Talk:Heaven

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Atheist view on an afterlife[edit]

All 'Atheism' means by definition is 'non-belief in a God or Gods'-it has no bearing on a belief in an afterlife-one could believe in all sorts of things beside this-such as ghosts, mediums, extra-sensory-perception-and still be considered an atheist. So to say that there is a 'blanket' atheist view on an afterlife is plainly untrue.

An Atheist would seek evidence that there is a heaven or ghosts etc.....to be specific atheists is the critique and denial of metaphysical beliefs in God or spiritual beings. Should talk about this at the Afterlife article not here at the religious article. I agree some may believe in an afterlife but heaven is a whole different topic because of the reward aspect of heaven.-- Moxy (talk) 18:58, 15 January 2014 (UTC)

An atheist is exactly what a theist is not-someone who does not accept the premise that a God or Gods exist. Nothing whatsoever to do with belief in anything else, and quite separate from a belief in heaven or an afterlife. An atheist does not need be 'logical' or 'rational' by definition-they simply have to believe that a God or Gods do not exist. So if one says 'I don't believe in God, but I believe in ghosts'-then they are an atheist by definition, from the greek 'a'; 'no', and 'theos'; god. Nothing whatsoever to do with a scientific or rational view of the world per se.

Jains and some schools of Buddhists; who do not accept belief in a God or Gods, could also be described; not inaccurately, as atheists

To wit: I'm not an atheist (I'm not a theist either). But I don't believe in ghosts and I have a pretty scientific, rational view of the universe. Does that make my view any less rational?JWULTRABLIZZARD (talk) 16:20, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

Its based in logic....most don't believe in Gods, spirits, or metaphysical life force. Since there is no life force ...it cant survive death to go to an afterlife can it? - Grace Davie; Linda Woodhead; Paul Heelas (2003). Predicting Religion: Christian, Secular, and Alternative Futures. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. p. 211. ISBN 978-0-7546-3010-4.  -- Moxy (talk) 17:31, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

Only it isn't neccesarily based on logic at all- it just means a person who does not believe in a God or Gods-and to say 'only atheism is rational' would mean that notable scientists and philosophers like Heisenberg, Einstein, Kant, Godel, David Hume, Voltaire, et cetera were not rational as regards their conclusion that a god of some kind exists (and I'm not saying I neccesarily agree with them by the way)-which, if you know anything about the beliefs of any of them, is patently nonsense.

Note the word 'most' there. Obviously, as a cross-section of society, the majority of atheists will not believe in an afterlife. But that doesn't mean all of them do, nor does it mean they cease to be an atheist by definition if they decide they believe that, say; there is an afterlife of some kind.


The definition given in the Oxford English Dictionary for 'Atheist' is:

"a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of God or gods."

-and the definition given for 'atheism' is:

"disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods."

-doesn't say anything else whatsoever other supernatural phenomena, reincarnation, ghosts, et cetera. All it means is, quite simply, the belief that a God or Gods do not exist.

What has 'belief in a life force' got to do with anything? People have all sorts of justifications (rational and irrational) as regards their belief in an afterlife.

Likewise, a person can be a theist (one who believes in a personal god) or a deist (one who believes in a god but not a personal one) and not believe in an afterlife: for example, the early jews didn't have any concept of an afterlife at all, and Einstein, though a believer in a (non-personal) god, was quite clear and emplicit that he did not believe in an afterlife.

oh; and never mind (and I quote you) 'most of them don't believe in gods'; none of them believe in gods or a god-that is precisely what 'atheism' means.

JWULTRABLIZZARD (talk) 18:33, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

I do agree however, that discussion under 'afterlife' would be more appropriate, as heaven (like, for example, reincarnation) is a specific type of afterlife.

JWULTRABLIZZARD (talk) 18:43, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

Lets show more comprehensive sources as some seem to believe that its all about religion vs a metaphysical belief-system. --
If by definition they don't believe in spiritual beings how can a supernatural phenomena like reincarnation let them go to heaven if they don't believe in them to begin with. -- Moxy (talk) 07:30, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

You're not listening. 'Atheism'-lack of belief in a God or Gods- is the opposite of theism-a belief in a personal God or Gods-it has absolutely no bearing on whether a particular theist or atheist accepts

They do not 'by definition...don't believe in spiritual beings'-that's exactly my point. All 'atheism' means by definition is 'disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods'. You can believe in any number of 'supernatural beings' and still by definition be an atheist. If a man does not believe in a God or Gods, but he accepts the existence of, say, ghosts-then he is still an atheist precisely because he does not believe in a God or Gods. Belief in any other phenomena-supernatural or not-is irrelevant. All that is relevant is whether the person believes in a God (in which case he is a theist) or not (in which case he is an atheist)

If by definition they don't believe in spiritual beings how can a supernatural phenomena like reincarnation let them go to heaven if they don't believe in them to begin with

i.They (atheists) don't neccesarily not believe in supernatural beings. ii.Only sikhs and hindus believe in reincarnation that leads them to a 'heaven'. Therefore, by definition btw, they are theists. iii. Jains -though they accept belief in reincarnation, absolutely do not believe in a God or Gods. Thus, by definition, jainism is an atheistic religion (and that also means all jains are atheists as well.) iv.You are utterly, utterly missing my point: if a man absolutely does not believe in a God or Gods, but accepts the existence of an afterlife or reincarnation, then he is still an atheist, by definition, because he does not believe in a God or Gods. That is the dictionary, official definition, regardless of what other authors may say they 'generally' believe. Likewise, most will 'generally' believe in an afterlife statistically, but a man can still be a theist and not believe in an afterlife-the early jews, for example, certainly didn't believe in a heaven or any form of afterlife-but they were still by definition theists. Likewise with atheists who believe in an afterlife-they might, percentage-wise and statistically be in the minority, but they still exist. Therefore there is not a 'blanket' atheist view on an afterlife.JWULTRABLIZZARD (talk) 01:05, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

It will be hard to avoid what academic sources say vs the above guess. Will let others comment.Moxy (talk) 06:23, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Comment about "Weasel Words"[edit]

Actually, the section on "Entry to Heaven" does not appear to me to have Weasel Words. Certainly, it does not have a lot of content; but equally certainly one cannot be saying "all religions" or "religions" in general. Maybe that banner is auto generated based on syntax -- but to me it does not appear correct in this application.108.212.92.200 (talk) 22:48, 10 April 2014 (UTC)

Give WP:WEASEL a read. 'Weasel words' are basically words such as 'Some religions do X' or 'Most do Y' or 'Most cars in the US have an emergency break.' There needs to be clarification to these claims, as well as citations. Ging287 (talk) 22:58, 10 April 2014 (UTC)