Instead of calling myself an atheist I’d rather call myself a person of reason.
Plus what hits harder when someone asks if you believe in god, replying "No, I'm an atheist." OR "No. I'm a man/woman of reason".
(Though I do realise 'atheist' is a little sexier and easier to google.)
Try "Free Thinker" It's been a euphemism for "atheist" since the Enlightenment.
I like that one too.
I've used the word atheist since about age 7 I think, facing crowds of catholic students, nuns, nun-teachers, priests, bishops. So I guess I'm used to using it. In a world awash with moronic spiritualism (be it celestially religious or not), the word atheist has it's place for me, it means "I think you are all ridiculous" ("you" being those faith driven sheople).
But when it comes down to a discussion with friends about faith and spiritual stuff, I move on to the term realist, sometimes naturalist, but mostly realist. I surround myself with realism, I seek out the discernibly real from the fake and delusion and karma and "mushy feelings" and all the other BS that gets pushed by those obsessed with the non real world... which unfortunately includes some who consider themselves atheists.
Reason and rational I find to be duplicitous words. I know a whole lot of people who "believe" in Capitalism and the New World Order who consider themselves reasonable... not very impressed.
A 'normal rational person' is a good description too.
Normally Rational Person, might work also. I have found some strangely helpful stuff at times mixed with newage crud. The last has been RT energy therapy, during which I get a very good nap, while the other person thinks they are an 'energy engineer' playing with my 'energy fields'. Figure good for me/good for them, I don't have to believe it to get a nap/deep relaxation. LOL
Dan, I agree with you that although I am a Atheist by definition, I prefer to describe myself as "non-religious" because not only do I not believe in a god, I don't believe in the whole religious scam. Also when you tell someone "I'm a atheist" it brings up pre-conceived ideas immediately, no chance for a discussion because they have already formed their opinion of you.
"Free-Thinker" baffles most people so that is a good one also.
Agreed, Tim - granted, there's nothing wrong with the word, but it does have it's connotations, and if you have ANY intention of further dialogue with your audience, another, synonymous term might be advisable. Of course, if you're just looking to say, "up yours!" then atheist should do nicely.
I agree with you. I tell people I don't believe in the scriptures, so I have no basis to believe or disbelieve in a God. But I caucus with the Atheists.
The problem with identifying yourself as a "person of reason" is that many people consider themselves that as well.
Xian - "So, do you go to church? I do."
person x - "No, I'm a person of reason".
Xian - "What luck, me too!"
Once 'reason' is associated enough with nonbelief, I would consider this title.
Also it's a little condescending. Maybe that's not unwarranted, but it's usually not helpful either. The obvious implication is that the other person is not reasonable just because they are religious.
The term Atheist gives the impression of an ardently non-religious person, which almost invites challenge. I don't usually want to discuss religion with a religious person at all, so I tend to just say that I'm not really religious, and leave it at that. If they persevere, I simply say I think religion is a personal matter and I don't want to discuss it.