Stub page for atheist.
To be as inclusive of as many atheists as possible, we use the simple definition that an atheist is any person who does not believe in any god or gods. Similarly, atheism is simply that state of a person lacking any god belief, or theism. Etymologically, this works as 'a-' meaning 'without', and 'theism' meaning 'god belief'.
The definitions from the Oxford English Dictionary:
Here is how the OED defines atheism:
atheism Disbelief in, or denial of, the existence of a god.
disbelieve 1. trans. Not to believe or credit; to refuse credence to: a. a statement or (alleged) fact: To reject the truth or reality of.
- To contradict or gainsay (anything stated or alleged); to declare to be untrue or untenable, or not what it is stated to be.
- Logic. The opposite of affirm; to assert the contradictory of (a proposition).
- To refuse to admit the truth of (a doctrine or tenet); to reject as untrue or unfounded; the opposite of assert or maintain.
- To refuse to recognize or acknowledge (a person or thing) as having a certain character or certain claims; to disown, disavow, repudiate, renounce.
Note that the OED definition covers the whole spectrum of atheist belief, from weak atheism (those who do not believe in or credit the existence of one or more gods) to strong atheism (those who assert the contrary position, that a god does not exist).
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Annoying misunderstandings of atheists
I am not 'athier' than anyone else, so stop calling me athiest.
agnostics are either atheist or theist
many academic and otherwise high-quality definitions of "atheist" that are consistent with this (correct) definition