Are atheists and non-theists the same thing? To me, it seems they are. But on several separate occasions I have heard people use them as words of 2 different meanings. I thought they meant the same thing. Here is the text that actually got me to post this question "...only 26% of nontheists and 18% of atheists are women".

The Oxford English Dictionary defines nontheism as "... not having or involving a belief in a god or gods, especially as a being who reveals himself to humanity." 

And the 2 main definitions for atheism I found is:

1. The lack of a belief that deity, in the form of one or more supernatural gods or goddesses, exists.

2.The denial of the existence of God or gods.

So, is there really a difference? If so, I would really like someone to explain it to me.

Views: 253

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

The Buddha and those who adopted his tenets as their religion (Buddhism in its pure, original form) are religious people without a personal (theistic) god. They don't claim there is no deity. Their religion simply doesn't address the matter. So, no, theists and non-theists may or may not be the same thing, depending on the particular case.

Most atheists are best characterized as simply not believing that there is a deity. Only the few make the affirmative statement that there is no deity, because such a statement would require entering into the quagmire of proof. Their argument is mostly based on the absence of evidence or the seeming impossibility of a being having the ascribed attributes.

By contrast, many non-theists simply don't spend much time thinking about it.

Interesting question. 

I think there is still room for mysticism in "non-theism". Like, there are no gods, but maybe some ghosts. 

I think Atheism, and realism are synonymous. non-theist is another cop-out like agnostic. 

RSS

Support T|A

Think Atheist is 100% member supported

All proceeds go to keeping Think Atheist online.

Donate with Dogecoin

Members

Forum

Things you hate.

Started by Devlin Cuite in Small Talk. Last reply by Unseen 13 minutes ago. 183 Replies

Blog Posts

Zella Mae Jarrett

Posted by Philip Jarrett on April 19, 2014 at 11:35pm 2 Comments

Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

Services we love

We are in love with our Amazon

Book Store!

Gadget Nerd? Check out Giz Gad!

Into life hacks? Check out LabMinions.com

Advertise with ThinkAtheist.com

© 2014   Created by Dan.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service