Both Johan Fruh and Karl Fuchs have put the case simply and to the point.
This is why, fundamentally, I have supported the !00% positive level so positively.
1. 100% certainty is a straw man argument generally used against atheists. An atheist no more has to be 100% certain of god's nonexistence than a theist needs to be 100% certain. There are very few things that a thinking person can be 100% certain about, and there is a degree of agnosticism in any endeavor.
2. Another problem with this question is the issue of Theological noncognitivism. The noun "god" doesn't have a single clear definition, and many of the definitions tend to be incoherent, contradictory or obviously made-up.
3. Even if there were an entity somewhere that looks like what we think of as a god, the question still remains, why call it god? What type of phenomenon would actually deserve that title, with all the ramifications? (An interesting set of characters from the Star Trek series were the Q and the Q Collective. These were aliens who, for all intents and purposes, could be labeled gods - but clearly were not.)
your point 1. got me thinking about something..
Isn't a person who isn't completely certain about god's existence, techincally an agnostic? Even if he is leaning towards the non-existent possiblity.
I always thought that atheism was affirming the non-existence of god. And you can't really affirm it, without being 100% sure.
The strawman, in my opinion, is the percentages that are very close to 100%, without quite being 100%. It's a way of reminding that we are only human and can be wrong about our certitudes. While virtuous and very atheistic (I've never met a religious person saying he is 99.99% sure god exists), being 100% certain doesn't stop you from admitting a possibility of error.
Certitude comes in absolutes. You cannot be partly certain of something.. that would be, by definition, uncertain. Only if you were uncertain, could you be leaning for an argument in percentages.
So the question is.... are you 0.1% uncertain of god's existence? ;) I know I'm not :).
"Isn't a person who isn't completely certain about god's existence, techincally an agnostic?"
Not depicted in this diagram is the fact that the gnostic-agnostic axis is a scale which represents degrees of certainty in either direction. Richard Dawkins placed himself at a 6 out of 7 on his own Scale of Theistic Probability, meaning "de facto atheist".
"...being 100% certain doesn't stop you from admitting a possibility of error."I'm pretty sure admitting the possibility of error indicates less than 100% certainty.
1. Which god do you refer to? There are over 3000 gods claimed to exist or claimed to have existed.
2. No-one can ever be 100% positive about anything. There is no such thing as absolute truth.
3. If you are referring to the Abrahamic God, it can't exist because it's definition forms a logical contradiction.
4. If you are referring to the Deist God, it is meaningless and irrelevant because it can't be falsified.
5. It's most likely that the rest of the over 3000 gods claimed to exist or claimed to have existed have definitions which are either incoherent or falsifiable since it's the case with all of the ones that I've come across so far.
I don't have any personal concepts of gods since I was never indoctrinated but based on current knowledge and my comments above I believe that it's highly unlikely any exist.
Since I'm not omniscient I can't comment on the future and whether that might or might not change.
Theists love it when some atheists (very few) make the claim that "gods don't exist" because then they can sit back and demand that the claimer prove it knowing full well that the claimer can't.
It allows them to shift the burden of proof onto the person making that claim and they are no longer required to provide evidence to support their equally unprovable claim that their favorite flavor of "god exists".
Which of the 3000 gods listed at that link am I supposed to be in any confusion about? These are just the ones we know about because someone took the time to write about them, or left their names inscribed on stone temples and effigies. Think of the thousands more that we DON'T know about, because no records of them were left behind. I am 100% certain that NONE of them, known or unknown, exist. Is there one I missed because it hasn't been listed yet?