questionswhich gods are agnostics agnostic for?


Wouldn't it, but defaut, be any god? If you can't decide (or come to a conclusion) on one god, how can you decide on any other god?


@wnyx585am: By default yes.

But I've often heard arguments that give the same attributes of a possible god of those who share a religious view of where they live.


I'd have to say any and all as well. To my understanding, agnosticism is not denying the possibility of a god, but not actively believing in a particular one either. So seeing God/gods spiritually, but not adhering to the tenants of any particular organized religion.


The word "agnostic" was made up by biologist T. H. Huxley sometime in the 1860s as the antithesis of Gnostic. The root of agnostic (and gnostic) is "knowledge" (not belief)- because Huxley thought that anything beyond the material world was not only unknown but inherently unknowable - including the existence of deities or any supernatural being.

If it is impossible to know anything about a being/beings/thing that is outside the material world, then all gods are equally unknowable, unless your particular deity is right here in the material world.


Majikthise: I mean, what's the use of our sitting around half the night arguing whether there may...

Vroomfondel: Or may not.

Majikthise: a God, if this machine only goes and gives you his phone number in the morning?

Vroomfondel: That's right! We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty.


Lunkwill: Who are you? Get out of here!

Majikthise: I am Majikthise.

Vroomfondle: And I demand that I am Vroomfondle.

Majikthise: It's all right, you don't need to demand that.

Vroomfondle: All right. I am Vroomfondle. And that is not a demand. That is a solid fact. What we demand is solid facts!

Majikthise: No, we don't, that is precisely what we don't demand.

Vroomfondle: We don't demand solid facts. What we demand is a total absence of solid facts. I demand that I may or may not be Vroomfondel.


I hope those little exchanges clear up your uncertainties around agnosticism.


For ease, when I say "god" just insert "god, gods or God".

I was in a fairly extensive argument recently and someone had the position that agnostics and atheists go god-to-god and reach a conclusion on each. I don't believe this happens often, but if one person does it, I have to assume others do as well.

I am agnostic, because as @adadavis pointed out, it's not possible for me to know. Some people have faith and some don't. But, being agnostic doesn't hinder me in learning about religions and how each tries to provide answers to questions that science cannot yet answer.

It can vary, but generally:
Theists = Belief in god
Atheists = Denies the existence of god
Agnostics = Don't know

We could assume that all 3 classes have done their due diligence and research before reaching their conclusions, but I doubt it. I know my own studies will probably never be done, which is why I am comfortable remaining agnostic.

I hope this thoughtful Q doesn't devolve into any ad hominem attacks.


My own personal version of agnosticism is this: I believe there are sentient powers unseen among us. Throughout history various cultures have developed religions around their concept of what those powers are and what motivates them. While religions vary, most cover the basic questions of: Why am I here? Why do things happen? Who or what is in charge? What do I need to do to please them? What will happen to me when I die? In my own individual belief system, those points where almost all religions find common ground are probably the ways in which we, as humanity, are right about the nature of these powers. Points where they diverge the most sharply are likely the ways in which we are the most wrong. But I don't think any one religion has all the answers, so I follow a belief system made up of the parts of them all that integrate to a single set of ideas that work for me.


Obviously there are things we humans don't fully understand yet. The existence of the universe, for example. Sure, we might be able to see that the universe is expanding and there may have been a big bang, but where did the big bang come from? Why was there anything there to go bang in the first place?
Agnostics are open to the possibility that there is a "higher power", but it's doubtful that this higher power is anything like the gods described in books written by mankind. As long as we keep looking, someday we'll find the real answers. As a sentient being, I hope the answers will be revealed to me when I leave my physical form behind. If it turns out there is nothing after this life, I won't know any different.
One of these days, we'll discover something that will be a "light bulb" moment and then everything will make so much sense. Collectively, we might have to change our way of thinking before we're open to such possibilities.


@thedogma: Has it about right, in my personal case. I've considered myself agnostic for years. I don't disbelieve in any gods, but at the same time I haven't found a single religion that's really sold me on its theology.

I usually joke around with people and just say that I'm keeping my options open.


I used to be agnostic until I found Frisbeetarianism.
We believe that when you die, your soul flies up to the roof and gets stuck.

(Thanks, George Carlin).


@curtisuxor: atheists don't deny the existence of gods, we deny there is evidence supporting the claim. So I enjoy the here and now, and not what might be.

@bsmith1: yes there are things we don't understand... but we shouldn't make
stuff up to fill in the blanks - we should use the scientific method to understand what we can, and say "I don't know" for things we don't. I require evidentiary proof of any claim.

Witnessing, testimonials are not evidentiary proof of a claim other than to those who is are making them.

One bit of evidence to me would be a regrowth of a freshly cut limb of a faithful volunteer, through prayer alone, during live feed, broadcast continuously, accompanied with world wide prayer.

Time tested scientific, medical help will not be used, with the exception of a tourniquet to help stop the bleeding.