Non-theistic belief systems
Atheism: Belief in no God, or no
belief in God. (There is a difference)
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Why many people select Atheism:
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Overview of Atheism:
"Atheism" has many meanings, all of which are related to an absence of belief in the existence of a god, a goddess, gods, goddesses, or pantheons which are typically combinations of supernatural entities. (The word "pantheon" is related to the building with that name commissioned by Marcus Agrippa circa 30 BCE as a temple honoring all the deities of ancient Rome.)
The term "Atheism" is ambiguous by itself; it really requires a modifier -- as in "strong Atheist," "weak Atheist," "apathetic Atheist." etc. in order to accurately refer to a specific belief system.
Among the general population, the most common meaning of the word "Atheist" describes what many would call "a strong Atheist:" a person who definitely asserts that all the thousands or tens of thousands of god(s), goddess(es), ghosts, demons, Satans, angels, etc. recognized by humans in the present and past do not exist in reality but were all created by humans.
The most common meaning among Atheists themselves refers to a weak, negative, soft, or skeptical Atheist: one who simply lacks a belief in and knowledge of any supernatural entities whatsoever.
A common belief among conservative Christians is that a person chooses to be an Atheist for only one reason: if they were to believe in a God they would need to follow that God's moral code as he/she has revealed to humanity. That may be a true assessment for some Atheists, but I have never met any who would fit that description. Most are offended by the suggestion. All the Atheists that I have communicated with, including my spouse, assert that they have been forced to become Atheists on purely logical grounds. They see no evidence for such being(s) and they see many indicators that such beings do not exist. To be true to themselves, they cannot accept the existence of God, just as the average Christian cannot accept the existence of Thor, Venus, Baal, and countless other goddesses and gods of antiquity.