@JohnPhilpin For me, it’s both. Don’t believe in god and staunchly against organized religion (although love its music and architecture). I believe in certain core values that are immutable and certain secondary values that I remain open to change. I don’t believe that guidance should come from external (imaginative) entities or rather from your internal values (be good for goodness sake and not coz you want to not go to hell)
@JohnPhilpin Not a theologian. Have been deconstructing for a long time. I have always thought of an atheist as not only not believing in a god but also willing to defend the idea that no gods exist–especially after hearing from Hitchens, Harris, et al. I’m all about personal agency and I’m trying hard to remove myself from any number of boxes. I’m only willing to state that I’m a-religious.
@JohnPhilpin In the app Terminology, it is defined like this: 1. someone who does not believe in the existence of a god
(Which is what I’ve always thought it was.)
Oxford Dictionary define it like this: atheist /ˈeɪθɪɪst / ▸ noun a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of God or gods: he is a committed atheist.
@JohnPhilpin An atheist does not believe in the existence of any god. An agnostic believes that the existence of god (or of gods) is unknowable. People can believe in god (or gods) but not in organized religion; they want to have their faith but keep it separate from the institutions that created or maintain their faith's particular teachings. "Religion" can be thought of as an earthly institution that has historically failed many people. That's how I understand it when people say they don't believe in religion. Deists, who believe in a creator god but not a supernatural god that interferes in the universe (or in people's lives), also sort of believe in god but not religion.