The Dichotomy: Atheist Vs. Atheism
There is a war going on for your mind. An age-old question is/are there a god or gods? Nested in this question though is another decision worth noting. If my answer is “I do not know” am I an atheist or an agnostic? I would argue that they are one in the same. To call yourself an agnostic is to be a subset of atheism.
Although the distinction between atheist and agnostic may seem significant in use they are similar in definition. The definitions of the terms are as follows; Definition 1: a lack of belief or a strong disbelief in the existence of a god or any gods, Definition 2: one who is not committed to believing in either the existence or the nonexistence of god or gods. Without being labeled these definitions of atheist …show more content…
Many people confuse dichotomies as “this” or “that”. A true dichotomy is actually "this" or "not this". To misrepresent a dichotomy is to leave a grey area in the discussion. So, for example, a man is asked if he went left or right. The structure of this question leaves only two answers but if the man went straight then neither is true. It is a false dichotomy. Now we ask the man if he went left or not left. He can honestly answer the question saying he went not left. Now to address this in terms of agnostic and atheist. The perfect dichotomy is; theism, belief in the existence of a god or gods; or atheism, (a) meaning not or without, -theism. To say I do not know if I believe in god or gods is to say that you have not been convinced of the existence of a god or gods. An example, there is a man named Jacob. Jacob has a wife named Natasha. Natasha struggles with her weight and is categorized as clinically obese. Jacob was talking to a work friend, Ahmed, and told him that his wife is a ballerina. Not only is she good but she is currently one of the best in New York. Now Ahmed has never seen Natasha dance but knows she is currently struggling with her weight. Given the information, he isn't convinced that she could be one of the best ballerinas in New York. So he does not believe Jacob. So we see that disbelief and to not be convinced in this sense are synonymous. When a person is not convinced there is a god or gods is when many people take the stance of agnostic, but given the true dichotomy if you are not a theist then by default you are an