back to top

5 Common Misconceptions About Atheists

Because the vocal minority isn't always an accurate representation of the whole.

Posted on

1. Not all of us are sure we're right

Fun fact: Agnostic/Gnostic refers to knowledge and Theist/Atheist refers to belief. These are two separate concepts. There are Agnostic Christians and Agnostic Atheists. A Gnostic thinks they know without a doubt their belief is true. Atheism can just represent a lack of belief. Richard Dawkins is technically an Agnostic Atheist because although scientific evidence doesn't support the existence of God, he doesn't think he can know that God doesn't exist with 100% confidence. So don't assume every Atheist is running around shouting "I'm right and you're wrong, and that's just the way it is".

2. We're not all Nihilists

A lot of people think Atheists believe there's no meaning in life and we feel that nothing we do matters. However, many Atheists believe in living their life with purpose and accountability for their actions, not for reward or punishment, but because it's the right thing to do. After all, if you believe you only get one spin at life, you might as well make the most of it while you're here. Nihilism is a philosophy some follow, but it's not the same thing as Atheism.

3. We're not all Anti-Theists

Some Atheists take a stance against religion and can be pretty vocal about it. There are a number of reasons one may be anti-religion. The aim is usually taken against the Church and organized religion as a whole. But Anti-theism and Atheism are not one and the same. Some nonbelievers have no issue with someone having a belief in God, and make an effort to be respectful of beliefs that differ from their own. Just FYI, we exist too.

4. We're not all "part of the club"

One of the unfortunate aspects of labels is that if you technically fall into a certain category, you're often going to be lumped in with people who don't necessarily always represent your ideas or attitude. Not all religious people are the same and neither are non-religious people. A lot of Atheists really don't care about being a part of the secular community, debating, or talking about the existence or nonexistence of God. Some don't even want to label themselves as Atheists because they just don't feel like getting into it. So, not all of us want to remind you God isn't real every time you say hello.

This post was created by a member of BuzzFeed Community, where anyone can post awesome lists and creations. Learn more or post your buzz!