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Atheist Community of Austin
Positive atheism

Just a quick question, what exactly is positive atheism? Is there such a thing as negative atheism?

Hello Gert-Jan.

Positive atheism can mean the position that there are no gods, or probably no gods. It can also be the position that one can live a good, meaningful life without gods, which is also called humanism.

So when the ACA promotes positive atheism, does the second definition apply? I'm confused because the Wikipedia article titled "Negative and positive atheism" asserts the first definition, according to which crew members of The Atheist Experience and The Non Prophets such as Russell Glasser are "negative atheists". From what I gather, the crew members say they encourage "positive atheism", but I doubt that they would bear the burden of proof and try to strictly refute the supernatural.

Actually Omino it is referred to as secular humanism, considering that it is not to be confused with religious humanism, such as Christian humanism. Let's not forget that the man known as "the Father of humanism" and "the father of the Renaissance, that is Petrarch was a devout Roman Catholic. Facts matters.

I don't think this is what is meant by "positive atheism" when referring to how it's used in the ACA tagline. I think it's more about presenting atheism as a positive thing, through positive interactions with other people.

Negative atheism, in this case, would be the obnoxious atheist that goes to a Bible study with the express purpose of trolling, for example.

I'm not referring to how anyone in particular uses the terms Positive and Negative atheist but they are being misused all the time.

The terms positive atheism and negative atheism have nothing to do with anyone's attitude or behavior. The terms describe a philosophical stance.

Positive atheists do not believe that there is an all good, all knowing, all seeing god who created everything and does not believe in a personal god or any gods. It is also known as strong atheism.

Negative atheist have no knowledge of any god but that doesn't say anything about what they believe. It's also known as weak atheism. Positive atheists disbelieve in god or gods and negative atheists have no belief in a god or gods.

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