Why atheism is almost certainly true.

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Sapporo's picture
Strong Atheist: Exactly, like

Strong Atheist: Exactly, like being able to create something out of "nothing".

Talyyn: i disagree a little bit here, if supernatural beings were ever to exist, their interactions with the natural would certainly leave clues that can't be explained, right?

For exemple creationists assert that radioactive decay can arbitraly vary in time. Sudden rise of it would leave pattern i think, but yeah, it i but my humble opinion.

:p in recent times, I've been beginning to suspect that most of the time and energy spent in debates is due to disagreements over the meaning of words.

I consider nature to represent everything that exists - this is necessarily a self-contained system defined by laws. Within such a system, it is impossible for something to be created out of nothing. What exists outside such a system is a meaningless question to me, as is the notion that the natural world was created out of nothing.

toto974's picture
So we must first debate and

So we must first debate and find a common definition for words, but this debate itself would be lost withi minutes... a vicious circle.

Sky Pilot's picture


I think the stumbling block for most people is that they imagine a fully formed adult elephant popping out of nothing. We know that doesn't happen. But that doesn't mean that a high energy neutrino can't pop out of nothing. And once that happens it continues to evlove into more complex elemental particles until hydrogen atoms are formed and then they start cooking up everything else. The universe is still evolving.

Cognostic's picture
Finally some intelligence

Finally some intelligence thrown into the discussion.

Sheldon's picture
" i disagree a little bit

" i disagree a little bit here, if supernatural beings were ever to exist, their interactions with the natural would certainly leave clues that can't be explained, right?"

If a clue can't be explained how can you assert what it means? Theists do this with claims for miracles all the time, it's the very definition of an argument from ignorance fallacy. Unexplained means just that, and by definition can mean nothing more.

xenoview's picture
As an Atheist I believe in

As an Atheist I believe in zero gods.
When I was a theist, I tried to prove god was real.

I prayed to God, got no answer.
I asked God to reveal itself, god remained hidden.
Therefore I remain an Atheist.

Sky Pilot's picture


Creptius will answer your prayers several times a day with smelly gas.

LogicFTW's picture
@Strong Atheist Original post

@Strong Atheist Original post:

This is one of many many reasons religion makes no sense. Any one of them should be good enough to shut down the debate for "a particular god idea" by it self, but of course those brainwashed from an early age to accept fantastical explanations w/o evidence simply do not see it that way. They operate god is god first, and that explains everything else: any possible logic, reasoning, factual counter argument.

An unproven idea to explain all possible counter arguments. Ofcourse we regular atheist have seen this all the time and are well aware of the central basic concept that is a completely effective argument against this: we operate in a world and reality where if we want to survive we make decisions about the future based on evidence available to us. The better we are at this the more likely we are to survive to old age and not get taken advantage of by our fellow human beings. In that system, we require evidence for any claim, especially fantastical ones. A skill we all have to a greater or lesser degree, just: atheist apply to the "god ideas." Where theist do not.



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Strong Atheist's picture
My post is a response to

My post is a response to William Lane Craig saying that it's impossible or near impossible for something to come from nothing. Well then how could god make something come from nothing? Others, Catholics, say something can come from nothing if God does it. So.… Yeah. :D

algebe's picture
Strong Atheist:

Strong Atheist:

Do you consider reality to a binary choice between (a) no god or (b) God (with a capital 'G')?

In my opinion, it's a choice between (a) reality, as something that came into being through some natural but as yet unexplained event, and (b) reality created magically by one or more of an infinite range of vanishingly improbable supernatural agents, all of which have characteristics that link them to particular human cultures/civilizations.

There's no choice really.

Strong Atheist's picture
I don't know tbh.

I don't know tbh.

Randomhero1982's picture
I read the comments of god is

I read the comments of god is timeless and outside of the universe, reality etc...

I'm yet to see any evidence that there is even an outside of the universe, nor the reality we share.

So when evidence, reality and so on fails them, we move to the more recent arguments... "you can make logical arguments to support the notion".

Yes, and you can also make a logical argument that The Predator is real and will run for mayor of San Diego one day... doesnt make it so.

Really what the OP should have said is 'why atheism is the more likely to be accurate in regards to the question it pertains too.

Sky Pilot's picture
Strong Atheist,

Strong Atheist,

When a new star goes on line it is just a ball of burning hydrogen. Over time new elements are created. So where did those new elements come from? And where did the hygrogen come from that formed the star? and go on goes the gression until you get to nothing. The problem is that we can't comprehend what nothing is or what its properties are. And since there is a lot of stuff now maybe nothing is getting scarce, which is why we can't detect it.

Imagine a bowl of plain water. You then gently pour some colorless liquid soap in it without causing a distrubance. Everything seems to be just like it was before. But then you stir it up. And guess what? The soap reacts with the water and traps air into all sizes of bubbles. Were the bubbles always there before the mixture was mechanically agitated? Why didn't you see them before? How did the air get trapped and form diffirent size bubbles? If you had gently poured sand into the water would you have gotten the same kind and amount of bubbles when you stirred the water?

What is the difference between the two experiments? The both start out with plain water in a bowl. But one ingredient causes a lot of bubbles to be formed while the other one hardly causes any reaction at all. In the case of the formation of the universe we have not yet figured out what nothing is, represented by the water, but we know that nothingcan be created with the addition of hydrogen (the soap).

Strong Atheist's picture
What would you all say is the

What would you all say is the best way to convert someone to atheism as fast as possible?

edit: The Argument from Contingency
(1) Everything that exists contingently has a reason for its existence.
(2) The universe exists contingently.
(3) The universe has a reason for its existence.
(4) If the universe has a reason for its existence then that reason is God.
(5) God exists.

This argument from contingency suggests that God created the universe from nothing because the universe is contingent rather than necessary.


toto974's picture
How it is known that the

How it is known that the Universe exists contingently? Why would the reason be the abrahamic god?

LostLocke's picture
We don't know that premise 1

We don't know that premise 1 and 2 are true. So there's no way to conclude 3, and conclusions 4 & 5 presupposes "God" ie, Yahweh/Jehovah/Allah, and ignores all the other hundreds, if not thousands, of other creator gods.

Sheldon's picture
Substitute the word pixie for

Substitute the word pixie for god in that argument, then ask them to explain why it is any less compelling? Define pixies with the same attributes they define their deity. If they protest explain you are defining pixies into existence in the exact way they tried to define their deity into existence.

This argument is also not a theistic argument, as it demonstrably get you no closer to Jesus or Allah than it does to Zeus or Apollo.

I don't need to "convert" anyone to atheism, and the wording again seems incorrect, it's like trying to convince someone to change hobbies by asking them to stop collecting stamps.

It's enough to argue against religious's more pernicious beliefs and doctrinal claims.

LogicFTW's picture
@Strong Atheist

@Strong Atheist

What would you all say is the best way to convert someone to atheism as fast as possible?

The fastest easiest way? Steer young children away from all religion, atheist parents/family/community = atheist children 99+ percent of the time. Everyone is born atheist and they are tought (brainwashed) to be theist at a young vulnerable defenseless age. I would bet all my worldly possessions that if children were not exposed to religious ideas until they became adults and preferably learned at least high school level logic and reasoning skills that 95+ percent of all people would never even consider any religion and be atheist.

The largest reason I am atheist is because my mother was atheist, and I had a choice to not go to church, (which any kid will pick sleeping in and having brunch over waking up early to go sunday church and/or saturday church school.)

As for converting someone back to atheist from a lifetime of theist brainwashing since they were young and vulnerable, that unfortunately is a lot harder. I never seen it happen quickly outside of a horrific disaster. I imagine some of the survivors of the horrific and awful jewish synagogue mass shooting attack a couple of weeks ago might have quickly dispensed with their faith, (with other clinging even stronger to their faith as a result as well.)

The most effective tool I seen around here is: go read an opposing religions holy document, as you read it, explain to yourself why you disagree with that religions holy books, then after slogging through that, read one's own holy books and notice the very same reasons popping up in one's own reading cover to cover reading of various bibles etc.

Just about all major religions are hung by their own books, especially the older "out of date" versions of them. (I dare anyone to read the old testament cover to cover and step away from that reading thinking their god/religion is just, wise, fair and god like in knowledge/revelation.



▮          I am an atheist that always likes a good debate.          ▮
▮   Please include @LogicFTW in responses directed to me.    ▮
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Devans99's picture
Something cannot come from

Something cannot come from true nothing (no time, space, matter/energy) so you are correct that something must have always existed. But what always existed could be God so you can't prove atheism this way.

Tin-Man's picture
@Dan Re: "...so you can't

@Dan Re: "...so you can't prove atheism this way."

So, if you don't mind my asking, do you have any suggestions on how to prove aclausism? Or maybe aunicornism, or aleprachaunism? I'm thinking if you can provide us with your method to prove those things, then perhaps we could use your method to prove atheism.

Devans99's picture
Proofing that something does

Proofing that something does not exist is harder than proving something exists. It's probably impossible. Some folks may induce that God does not exist from their survey of nature but one cannot prove he does not exist on that basis. We can never prove that 3 legged unicorns do not exist, so I think the pursuit of a proof of atheism is not worth investing time in.

Tin-Man's picture


Aaaaaaand, of course, you totally missed the point.... *heavy sigh*.... *rolling eyes*.... You are speaking of atheism as if it is something that needs to be proven. A little hint: There is nothing about atheism that requires any type of "proving". Atheists simply do not believe in any god or gods. Period. Just like you (hopefully) do not believe in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, or an invisible pink unicorn that farts rainbows. But, please, by all means, do enlighten us dullard atheists and PROVE your lack of belief in all of those subjects. And while you are at it, please prove YOUR atheism in regards to all of the thousands of other gods ever created by man. I'm all ears... *smile of anticipation*....

Devans99's picture
Well the OP seems like an

Well the OP seems like an attempt to prove atheism. I know atheists do not believe in any Gods; but that can never be proved. On the other side of the fence; proving God's existence is possible. I wonder if one day we will prove it via the fine tuned universe argument; say we find something so clearly artificial that a creator's involvement is required.

The atom is a minor miracle. The strong nuclear force and electromagnetic forces have to be just right for atoms to hold together; if the forces were different, atoms would not form, or if they would form, it would only be the simpler elements (no carbon so no life). The fact that the two forces are set so precisely allows the wonderful range of matter we experience in the world today (the elements all 100+ of them). We then have the also remarkable chemical bonding process that give rise to the hugely diverse range of chemical compounds in the world. The atom truly is a miracle toolkit for construction of advanced matter and life. Contrast our universe to most hypothetical universes; particles would just bounce off each other endlessly without any cohesion because the forces and particles where not fine tuned such that atoms would form.

This sort of argument is not sufficient to prove a creator's existence at present but with time, I think science will get there.

Tin-Man's picture
@Dan Re: "I know atheists do

@Dan Re: "I know atheists do not believe in any Gods; but that can never be proved."

...*blinking rapidly multiple times*.... *blank stare*.... Ugh!... *quadruple face palm*....

algebe's picture
@Dan: if the forces were

@Dan: if the forces were different, atoms would not form, or if they would form, it would only be the simpler elements (no carbon so no life).

Then we wouldn't be here talking about this. That's all. Your argument from design presupposes that the universe was designed for humanity.

First of all, we can only survive in a very thin bubble of certain gases trapped on the surface of one planet in one solar system out of billions, trillions, and dingdongdillions of stars and galaxies in the universe. So much for design.

Second, we aren't the end product of the universe. We're a side effect.

Devans99's picture
All stars have a habitable

All stars have a habitable zone in which planets that fall in that zone are live supporting. Astronomy has found many Eco-planets so it looks as if a high proportion of the universe is life supporting.

If you were designing the universe, you would go for an Occam's Razor design; and it looks like thats exactly what we have. The universe contains exactly what is needed for life and no more: Stars as the sustained energy source for life and planets as the location for life.

Can you think of a simpler design for the universe that would enable life on such a grand scale? I cannot so I conclude this aspect of the universe is further evidence for a designer.

So we have a lot of evidence for a designer of the universe:

- High level design of universe is Occam's Razor
- Low level (standard model) is designed.
- Gravity and the rate of expansion of the universe are designed
- Cause and effect apply so the Prime Mover argument must be true; there must be a first uncaused cause
- That there is something rather than nothing seems to require God for an explanation.

Last time I did the maths, I came out at 97% sure there is a creator of the universe. What % do you have?

algebe's picture
@Dan: an Occam's Razor design

@Dan: an Occam's Razor design

What's that? Occams' razor is the principle that the simplest answer, the one that requires the least assumptions and speculation, is likely to be the truth. You've made a whole lot of disconnected assumptions and claims, which mysteriously add up to 97%, and on that basis you make a huge leap of faith to god. You're a very long way from Occam's razor. And by invoking god you've opened up an Occam's can of worms, because now you have to explain where god came from.

To date there's no evidence for life on any of the exo-planets discovered so far. Listening programs like SETI have produced zero results. I don't doubt that life exists elsewhere in the universe, but I think it's exceedingly rare, and that it can be snuffed out by supernovas, meteor strikes, climate change, and countless other extinction-level events. Life nearly vanished on Earth several times. The universe is NOT friendly to life. Even here on Earth, the star that is our "sustained energy source" will bombard you with harmful ultraviolet rays. Unless you protect yourself, you'll suffer serious burns and eventually you'll get skin cancer and die. Some design.

Devans99's picture
The star has run out of

The star has run out of energy by the time it supernovas so the star system is no longer habitable. Running out of energy at some point is just natural and unavoidable. Thats why I think time is circular; everything dies and then renews itself. Stars and us included. That is God's great design. A looping game of Conway's game of life played with stars and planets.

Meteor strikes are incredibly rare and many a problem in the early universe; the number of meteor strikes decreases with time. It's also possible to develop technology to counter meteors, so they would not effect advanced life.

Climate change and other extinction events: I think God expects us to develop the technology to look after ourselves. Live is very resilient and has never been under any real threat. Past extinction events have merely culled the weaker species and left the stronger to survive. That is part of God's plan.

We would not be able to detect EMR from aliens via programs like SETI; other star systems are simply too far away for that. We have a sample size of 1 saying star systems support life. So statistically at this stage we have to assume the universe is absolutely crawling with life.

I've been through the 97% probability calculation for a creator of the universe on this site before. Once again then (apologies):

1. The big bang looks like it must of had an artificial cause (a creator)

2. There is the fine-tuning of the multiverse for life which implies an intelligent creator

3. Why is there ‘something rather than nothing?’ Logically there should be nothing. The fact that there is anything at all is amazing and enough to invoke a Deity as a possible solution.

4. Various logical arguments (prime mover / necessary being) point to some sort of intelligent creator

So the above constitutes evidence in favour of the existence of ‘God’ (where God is defined as the creator of the universe ONLY). I’m not aware of any evidence against God (please let me know if you have any).
For each argument I assign a probability that it is evidence for Gods’ existence. This step is a little arbitrary so you will likely have an opinion on the numbers I’m using:

1. 50% chance god exists
2. 75% chance god exists
3. 25% chance god exists
4. 25% chance god exists

Starting at 50% chance God exists (always starts at 50% for an unknown boolean proposition), combine the probabilities:

1. 50% + 50% x 50% = 75% chance god exists
2. 75% + 25% x 75% = 94% chance god exists
3. 94% + 6% x 25% = 96% chance god exists
5. 96% + 4% x 25% = 97% chance god exists

So going on the available evidence, there is a 97% chance a creator God exists. I’m not claiming that any such God has magic powers like Omniscience, just that he created the universe.

Nyarlathotep's picture
Dan - ...always starts at 50%

Dan - ...always starts at 50% for an unknown boolean proposition...

Again, that is known as the naive definition of probability, and it is an extreme example. It is the work of a crackpot.

/e Perhaps even more disturbing is the author's appeal to probability, after telling us that set theory is bollocks. Apparently the author does not realize that probability is underpinned by set theory.

Devans99's picture
Honesty you know I already

Honesty you know I already proved you wrong in this. We went through it on a separate thread. You came up with a faulty example with a non boolean sample space, which I debunked. I will not repeat it all here.


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