Roger
user 33309642
London, GB
Post #: 251
the future's, well, the future - when lots of young people will have grown up:
http://yougov.co.uk/n...­
Angela D.
user 71491512
London, GB
Post #: 91
In the last national census, the humanist party wrote to members and others,

to write on their form: No Religion. But I had wondered what would all have atheist ACTUALLY stated?
Andy S.
user 8457357
London, GB
Post #: 191
Well the answer to what is your religion should be "None" rather than atheism as that implies the respondent is labelling atheist as his/her religion which muddies the water. I suppose religious perspective or religious worldview might be an appropriate category to put atheism but I think the best idea is not to use unless directly responding to a question about claims of god exisiting etc.
Adrian
KingHell
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 663
Well perhaps the question should be "Are you an atheist? Yes / No If no then continue to next question."
Or
"Do you believe in god?" etc.

since anyone who says no is an atheist pure and simple, although they may suggest they're not through general ignorance.
Georgi L.
Guffaw
London, GB
Post #: 1,751
Well perhaps the question should be "Are you an atheist? Yes / No If no then continue to next question."
Or
"Do you believe in god?" etc.

since anyone who says no is an atheist pure and simple, although they may suggest they're not through general ignorance.
These ones really get my goat (goat? ...what does that mean exactly?!). I tend to disabuse them of that if I come across them in social contexts. "Yes you ARE an atheist, why are you denying it". Why would anyone want to deny that they're sensible enough not to delude themselves with imaginary celestial tyrants? WTF? I class these as part of the 'irrational atheist' category. (It's something that Rich Francis and I haven't yet seen eye to eye on - a VERY rare occurrence!)

We even had 4 people like this at our meetup, who called themselves humanist but not atheist (Lorna Mumford's presentation - about the difference between those that prefer the label 'atheist' to those that call themselves 'humanist'.) Not a single person in the room denied their 'humanism ( Personally I don't use the LABEL as there are several aspects of it that don't sit right with me, but of course everyone but a psychopath would hope to aspire to humanitarian values ). Yet 4 'humanists' in a room of 50 people claimed they were not atheist. That's an impossibility isn't it, unless humanism can include believing in god now? So seems there are many irrational humanists too.

Atheism is a religion? Yes, like bald is a hair colour. It doesn't presume to tell us what is 'right' and 'wrong'. Surely we can work that out for ourselves. I've now understood what Rich F meant when he said that it should mean "lack of belief in supernatural agency" rather than just a lack of belief in a god. I agree, but I wouldn't want the 'official' definition to change as it would (severely?) cut down the number of people who would then be counted as 'atheist' i.e. since so many still seem to believe in woo like mediums, horoscopes etc. (More irrational atheists!)

Humanism on the other hand does not consist of a simple yes /no statement and instead is a set of fuzzy-wuzzy set of value judgements (which no one I've yet met seems to be able to identify!), and is IMO therefore far more like a religion. It attaches itself to 'ethics' and thereby suggests (like religion), that these values are somehow invented by or belong to the label. That doesn't sit right with me, since religious people can also be ethical, as can those who prefer other labels. I tend to think the humanism label is perhaps more suited to those who were once religious, and as such is very valuable in helping these people to come out. Probably 'atheism' as a stand alone label would be a step too far - no 'safety net' of a set of given codes and so on. But this is just a supposition, would be interesting to find out.

But regardless of label, as long as the trend is towards at least ticking the 'no religion' box, then that's more than good enough for me. The label differences are superficial and don't matter a toss when compared to getting rid of religion's hold - all towards Reason, that's what counts.
Georgi L.
Guffaw
London, GB
Post #: 1,752
Well the answer to what is your religion should be "None" rather than atheism as that implies the respondent is labelling atheist as his/her religion which muddies the water. I suppose religious perspective or religious worldview might be an appropriate category to put atheism but I think the best idea is not to use unless directly responding to a question about claims of god exisiting etc.
Hi Andy,

I would think the questions in the census were deliberately posed in such a way as to encourage people to tick a religion box, as a default. It requires much more thinking to answer 'laterally' or subvert an impertinence by the State in assuming you have a religion. Hence the JEDIs were born as a religion in the UK of course, gotta love it. And no doubt only because this was even more unpalatable to the State did they bother to include a no religion box at all the next time around.

A bit like the current opt in or opt out question over donor cards, the way the question is posed can make an ENORMOUS difference in the outcome, obviously. No doubt the church etc will have been consulted, and anyway they have unelected representation in decision making through the House of 'Lords'. And of course the BBC and other official bodies still insist on lumping religion with ethics as a category, when it should be under fiction or paranormal. It's all part of the same problem.
Adrian
KingHell
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 664
Atheism isn't a belief: it's a disbelief. And I love telling believers it's the fastest growing disbelief in the world!

The census is a data mining nightmare. They could easily identify an individual or at least a handful of individuals from using the much too copious information they asked for. I shall certainly ensure I'm overseas for the next one.

I agree with the humanism is like a sort of religion. Humanism has perhaps hijacked ethics like religion hijacked morals. I can see why that would have happened in Victorian times but really it needs a complete make-over, as it's now not that relevant to be a neo-Victorian institution claiming to be the guardians of what is now the domain of pretty much the majority of people.
Roger
user 33309642
London, GB
Post #: 274
World population is growing, belief is growing, disbelief is growing - where are the statistics to say how the overall pattern is shifting?
Angela D.
user 71491512
London, GB
Post #: 95
Some of the above is a little bit heavy for me. But there are paranormal atheist, or are they semi-atheist!?
There are irrational and rational atheist.
If humanist have aligned to ethical values, have not atheist too?
Is humanism being correlated, in a sense, to democracy?

Perhaps I have been confused with humanism with humanitarianism.
Adrian
KingHell
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 667
If humanist have aligned to ethical values, have not atheist too?
Is humanism being correlated, in a sense, to democracy?
Perhaps I have been confused with humanism with humanitarianism.
Maybe one day someone will actually be able to explain what humanism is (I haven't had a satisfactory answer, nor heard the same one twice!) and perhaps then your question will be answered!
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