Illustration by Damien Marie AtHope adapted from the book: “Living Religions” by Mary Pat Fisher

What are the largest religions of the world? What are their membership statistics, relative size, locations, rankings? Find out now simply by looking at the table and map below:

 

Religion: Members:
Christianity 2 Billion
Islam 1.2 Billion 
Hinduism 785 Million 
Buddhism 360 Million 
Judaism 17 Million
Sikhism 16 Million
Baha’i 5 Million
Confucianism 5 Million
Jainism 4 Million
Shintoism 3 Million
Wicca .7 Million
Zoroastrianism .2 Million

“Reason is my only master, whereas faith offered as reality is most defiantly not my friend.” 

When you say “GOD,” what do you mean by god?

 What happened before the big bang?

 
What is really being asked is, what happened before the universe of naturalism we do know exists; hoping you don’t know so it leaves open the possibility for their gOD myth of choice. What is before the big bang, “I don’t know” but I am waiting for science to one day tell us all. But, much more humble is the acknowledgment that we currently don’t know. However, it’s only reasonable to consider that all the things before are natural as that is what the big bang produced, only naturalism. With the amazing world of science facts, all one after another disproving the faulty claims of gods and religions; we need to stop asking whether believing in gods or religion is rational, and instead start asking how strongly holding onto religious belief is even cognitively possible. Science Facts Should Make Religious Belief Impossible So, even though You may say terms like god(s), as if that term universally means anything, without a connected myth people believe in (appeals to faith Fideism “FAITH-ISM”: faith is independent of reason, superior to reason, or reliance upon faith alone in some (generally religious) chosen beliefs and not others, even if reason is valued). But you don’t believe in a know-nothing theism “FAITH-ISM”, do you? You only value reason and evidence, right? Now, be honest when you think of god the influences of some god myth come in your head not an unknown and unknown possibly god somethingism, a vague unjustified theistic possibility thing you think came before the big bang. And, whatever, people can believe it’s a god but even if one could agree with you, honestly that would at best only get you the vague unjustified god nothing as your possibility before all the nature and reality we do know. However, we both get such a god does not fit a given religion hella vague something unknown before the big bang god if real has shown complete indifference to life on earth. So, all the religions are out the door or you could say almost all god claims can fit an origins unknown like what the big bang would limit and in that we find the problem. Religious holy book myth gods are well defined and not at all like the undefined something that could have been concluded as something before the big bang, which leaves us at, we don’t know but what is it about this unknown that can be believed to be a god something does nothing for you just as it tells you nothing and is most likely nothing but more nature just as everything we do know is a nature nothing magical. What do you mean by god? God, should stand for confusion. Not all people who say they believe in “gOD” agree on any of what they choose to agree on starts or completes a chosen god belief. Which should offer new possible ideas concerning why disbelief actually beats belief in a god something but just like there is no exact definition of a god concept existence, some stuff will hold a never-ending problem. Therefore, in trying to define or analyze chosen god belief styles in this way any may find some aspects that definitely hold reason to challenge, the differences in god belief attribution and god belief make up of this thing called god even in members of the same religion. The utter confusion of and about what others think amounts to or demonstrates what god myth should lead a reasonable person to conclude they all have or are currently making it up. There are no gods nor supernatural anything, think otherwise prove it with valid and reliable reason and evidence. To simplify, the general idea of “god” is likely derived from a man-made animistic assumption that nature contains magic thus a magic designer or controller called gods. Some people who are atheists were never theists. How lucky not to have endured what I did. Some of these Gold Star Atheists “never-theist” atheists may wonder if they missed out on something by not being raised theistically. Yes, you missed something alright, you missed a mind full of bullshit that is as hard to escape for some me included to even begin to see clearly, is my response but likely quite similar to many other because us Brown Star Atheists “theistically-raised” atheists, we think you missed out on the fun of Something terrible like missing out on a unilateral mind rape of faith toxic beliefs…

What do you mean by god Evidence?

As ethical atheists, we are not ok with pretend. So we are not silent because sacred falsehoods must end, even if the truth may offend. What is Faith but an unjustified belief that is willfully supported in violation to The Ethics of Belief, as faith holds a burden of proof until justified so faith claiming to “know” anything by this means is intellectually dishonest, uninformed on good belief etiquette or confused thinking offered as pseudo-knowledge? Theists like to confuse the understanding of atheism to lessen its obvious reason. So, here’s a definition of atheism: all offered claims of god(s) are baseless and devoid of a shred of testable or provable evidence and the claims of or about gods either don’t represent in reality or claim to represent things contrary to reality as well as contradicts each other requiring a conclusion of atheism (lack of belief or disbelief in theism). The god claim, is like a clown car in the magic big top of Fideism “faith-ism”, and Presuppositional Apologetics is Just Fascist Fideism all of which demonstrates the Theistic Reality Confusion. Sure there are intelligent theists and that does not in any way make theism even reasonable as one can be brilliant and hold logical fallacies as their truth and that like any thinking errors like theism can happen to an otherwise sound thinker. I strive to be a sound thinker thus I am an axiological atheist and some may wonder what is that? Axiological Atheism (“philosophic” value theory/value science “formal axiology” social science” atheism) is Classed Under Anthropocentric (human-centered) arguments: “Axiological atheism favors humanity as the absolute source of ethics and values, and permits individuals to resolve moral problems without resorting to God. Marx, Nietzsche, Sartre and Freud all used this argument to some extent to convey messages of liberation, full-development, and unfettered happiness.” – Link “Damien, your Axiological Atheism sounds Highly interesting! One point, though. Have you considered that all of this philosophizing will mean nothing when you are dead? Human ideology on the concepts of mortality have been around since the dawn of mankind and will continue until every last human being is dead.” – Challenger My response, philosophizing like all science will mean nothing after “we” are dead but I care about more than me I want universal betterment and true humanity flourishing so philosophizing like all science matter in this goal does it not? I am Not just Atheist, I am a proud Anti-religionist as well as Anti-theist. Those atheists who still like esoteric religions or religious philosophies, that is not me at all I oppose it all. Yes, you read that right, I reject it all, every religion or even pseudo-religion like. Just so I am not misunderstood, this includes buddhism, satanism, taoism, paganism, wicca, spiritualism, etc. Don’t get me wrong I am against ALL religion. What makes some believed Truth is actually True? To me, truth, in general, is a value judgment we place on what we think or believe is evidence or reason. Therefore, the rational imperative on us as intellectually honest thinkers to demonstrate that the proposed evidence or reasoned assumption is actually of a high epistemic standard with as much valid and reliable reason and evidence as possible from a credible source as possible which then makes some believed “Truth” actually worthy to be seen as Epistemologically True thus a “justified true belief”. Broadly, epistemic means “relating to knowledge (itself) or to the degree of its validation” and epistemological means ” critical study of knowledge validity, methods, as well as limits to knowledge and the study or theory of various aspects of or involved in knowledge”. I have justification to claim to know what I claim to know, that is proof, not faith which is unproof “Unjustified Belief.” Do you have such Justification? By claiming to know something by faith is to act in a way mirroring a dishonest thinker, as intellectually honest thinkers don’t claim knowledge without justification. As a general thinking in all my epistemology is Justificationism:(philosophy) is an approach that regards the justification of a claim as primary, while the claim itself is secondary; thus, criticism consists of trying to show that a claim cannot be reduced to the authority or criteria that it appeals to. In a general way, “Justificationism” to me, is the presupposition that claims to knowledge must be authenticated, certified, verified, validated, confirmedprovencorroborated, back up, show to be accurate, confirmed or in some other way shown to be justified. In other words, if a belief is knowledge, then it is in some way justified, and if a belief is unjustified then it is not knowledge. Justificationism” is the presupposition that claims to knowledge are on trial and the desire is make sure or demonstrate that (something) is true, thus in a Justificationism presupposition inquiry any claim to knowledge can be analyzed, for value by asking for its justification, and failure to provide sufficient justification is enough to reject that claim to knowledge until adequate justification is provided. In this context, a rational ethical belief (Ethics of Belief), is one which is justified, and a rational person is one who provides a rational ethical belief, with good reasons or proof to justify what is believed. For a justificationist, the purpose of philosophical investigation is not a search for faith (unjustified) belief, but only a search for justified true belief. This difference is subtle but important: while a justified belief is always rationally justified as true, it still must be realized that an unjustified belief is not necessarily always false but indeed is not justified. Failure to provide sufficient justification is enough to reject an offered claim to knowledge as unjustified belief (faith: belief without evidence or belief even up against contradictory evidence). These presuppositions constitute a reinforced justificationism uses and defines the rules by which competing proposals are evaluated, it can ensure any attempt to introduce faith (unjustified) belief(s) can be dismissed as unjustified. “Theory of justification is a part of epistemology that attempts to understand the justification of propositions and beliefs. Epistemologists are concerned with various epistemic features of belief, which include the ideas of justification, warrant, rationality, and probability. Loosely speaking, justification is the reason that someone (properly) holds a belief. When a claim is in doubt, justification can be used to support the claim and reduce or remove the doubt. Justification can use empiricism (the evidence of the senses), authoritative testimony (the appeal to criteria and authority), or logical deduction.” Ref I have to challenge your beliefs, because you won’t. To me, every religion was new at some point and had someone who made shit up, yes all of them, every religion. As an atheist, I am a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of god or gods. In my non-belief, I am also ignostic feeling that every theological position assumes too much about the concept of god(s). As an ignostic, I am a person who rational no idea of anything from reality whatever to label as “a concept of god” thus I can say I have no idea of anything that can connect to the term god and no reason to think anyone else can either. As an anti-theist, I am a person who is active in opposition to theism: both the concepts of god(s) as well as the religions that support them. This is because theistic concepts and theistic religions are harmful and that even if theistic beliefs were true, they would be undesirable. As an anti-religionist, I am a person who can look at religion on the whole and see it is detrimental to the progress of humanity thus am in opposition to all and every religion, not even just opposition to organized religion. In case you were wondering, I am anti-pseudoscience, anti-supernatural, and anti-superstition as well. Therefore, I am a proud anti-religionist, not just atheist or even anti-theist. Yes, I am an atheist, anti-theist, and an anti-religionist. I am against flawed superstitious magical beliefs like god(s) and/or religion. However, I am not against people. I have many strong opinions and beliefs as well as my challenge of others or I am against many types of beliefs especially if they involve supernatural or superstitious, or harm. However, I am not against people nor am I against their free right to believe as they wish. To me, everyone owns themselves and their beliefs are theirs as well, and will be held accountable for those beliefs. Thus, to me, not I or anyone has the right to force people on what to believe. I as others do have the right to voice our beliefs, just as I or others then have the right to challenge voiced beliefs. Long live mental freedom. Proudly, I am an atheist, anti-theist, and an anti-religionist. “Damien, what’s your philosophical position? Are you a materialist who believes that everything is reducible to physical? Idealism, Neutral Monist, etc.?” – Questioner My response, I am a metaphysical naturalist (basically everything is reducible to physical) because of the universal reliable truth of the application of the scientific methods reliable and only demonstration using methodological naturalism, no magic, not even simple supernatural found in any amount ever anywhere by anyone. “Damien, regardless of fancy wording we can not prove something is true without evidence just the same as we can not prove something is not true without evidence. Do you not agree that is the real argument?” – Questioner My response, No, I don’t agree, it is always so. If I say I have the Nile River in my pocket you can’t see in my pocket but if you are rational and assess just what is allowable in reality, you don’t have to even look I know as you such a claim is preposterous to the point it can defy reason thus anyone would rightly reject a claim that a very limited space of a pants pocket watch can only at most fit something about 10 inches long but the Nile River is 4,258 mi long and even if it could be moved, which it can’t, more issues, but all and all it is clear that you can with certainty say that the Nile River in my pocket does not exist. I will give you another. Or say I said I have a money in my front pocket and you look finding nothing where it would be if there thus you now have negative evidence of my pocket which is empty when reasonably searched and nothing, you rightly can confirm with certainty that the pocket is, in fact, empty and not filled with money as I had claimed. You are certain there is no money in my pocket exists. There are many more examples but I think you can see what I am saying. To me even your question, while a good one exposes how the approach to reason may be used differently depending on the thinker. I am a Methodological Rationalist, I rarely am pushed to doubt as a default, instead, I see reason as my default and at times it may be responsible to doubt, but I get to that conclusion because of reasoning. A common saying in pseudologic is “You can’t prove a negative.” This is, simply not true. This is clearly not true because any statement can be rewritten into the negation of its negation. Any provable statement can be written as a negative. For example, “X is true” can be rewritten as “X is not false”, a negative statement! If “X is true” can be proven true, then you have also proven a negative statement “X is not false”. Moreover, even if it is widely believed that you can’t prove a negative. Going so far as to have people thinking that it is a law of logic—you can’t prove that Santa Claus, unicorns, the Loch Ness Monster, God, pink elephants, WMD in Iraq and Bigfoot don’t exist. This widespread belief is flatly, 100% wrong. In this little essay, I show precisely how one can prove a negative, to the same extent that one can prove anything at all. Evidence of absence is evidence of any kind that suggests something is missing or that it does not exist. Per the traditional aphorism, “absence of evidence is not evidence of absence”, positive evidence of this kind is distinct from a lack of evidence or ignorance of that which should have been found already, had it existed. In this regard Irving Copi writes: “In some circumstances, it can be safely assumed that if a certain event had occurred, evidence of it could be discovered by qualified investigators. In such circumstances, it is perfectly reasonable to take the absence of proof of its occurrence as positive proof of its non-occurrence.” — Copi, Introduction to Logic (1953), p. 95 Here are some links about proving a negative: LinkLinkLinkLinkLinkLink We fight IDEAS, not people, so while I wish to destroy harmful or false ideas I wish to uplift and empower people by inspiring their will to reason and know REASON is often the enemy of ignorance.