The No True Atheist Fallacy
Christian Apologetics UK
I used to be an atheist. That doesn’t necessarily mean I was a Hitchens/Dawkins (insert other religion despiser) style atheist, in fact I wasn’t anti-religious at all. Yes perhaps I thought it was all a little silly but to be honest it was more out of ignorance than disdain for the religious. Coming from a single-parent, dysfunctional and working class household I wasn’t particularly well read and needless to say I did pretty bad at school, not because I was stupid but because I was lazy and was never really encouraged to see any value in education and learning. However, I considered myself an atheist because I didn’t believe a God or gods existed nor did I believe in the supernatural which seems consistent with atheism. I have always been naturally sceptical and atheism just seemed rather normal to me. Although I never thought about it at the time (because I’d never heard of hedonism), I used my atheism to justify by hedonistic lifestyle because it just seemed okay because that’s what everyone else in my friendship group was doing. Of course I’m not saying atheism necessarily leads to hedonism but it could just as much as it could lead to humanism.
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Yet in the seven years I’ve been a Christian I can’t count the number of times I have been accused of lying, since I couldn’t really have been an atheist. I’m constantly struck by the arrogance of some atheists who seem to know better than I do about what I have or haven’t believed in the past, rather than accept that people can move from atheism to theism. How dare people accuse me of not knowing what I didn’t believe in. One does not have to be a middle-class, Nietzsche read, university educated, Starbucks sipping humanist to be an atheist, one simply needs to have the absence of belief in the gods and the supernatural! There is no atheist disclaimer that states only those that know the Origin of the Species from back to front or those that saw the light after reading The God Delusion are allowed to call themselves atheists. Perhaps it’s that it’s only some of the arrogant atheists (and atheist celebrities) on Twitter that define themselves by their lack of belief in the gods that feel justified in accusing those less read than themselves as worthy of calling themselves atheists…
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