Many people are mistaken about the etymology of the word “atheism.” They think it comes from an alpha-privative negation a- joined with theism, that is, they think
atheism = a- theism
atheism = the negation of theism
That is not where atheism comes from, however. ‘Atheism’ is in fact an older word than ‘theism.’ It comes originally from the Greek ἄθεος meaning ‘godless’ or ‘without god’. The -ισμός is a later addition, which means “doctrine of” or “teaching of.”
We’ve been granted permission to publish Professor Borden Painter, Jr’s Curriculum Vitae (CV). For those unfamiliar with CVs, they’re equivalent to academic resumes. As can be seen below, Professor Painter has had an outstanding career.
Please consider buying and reading his book the New Atheist Denial of History. The cover is awful & the author himself is not pleased with the price (set by the publisher), but it’s well worth the time and cost.
*2018 update – free version of Borden Painter’s book online:
Conversation continues backward in time with the section covering the Medieval/middle ages and Renaissance Period. Professor Painter mentions “Dark Ages” as Victorian term to describe the era as incorrect description. Professor Painter then discusses advances during the medieval era and the dated and distorted model of middle ages as nothing but unthinking superstition.
Professor Borden Painter continues his discussion with Max Kolbe regarding atheist mis-representations of history from his book New Atheist Denial of History. The first topic in this part is Hitler’s views and trying to make him Catholic, rather than his obvious hostility to Christianity.Max discusses The League of Militant Atheist and it’s propaganda showing up in the new atheist movement.
Max Kolbe interviews Professor Borden Painter, Jr., a distinguished historian who has written The New Atheist Denial of History. Professor Painter begins by offering up his background and interest in new atheists and their version of history. He had read Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, and Richard Dawkins and found their history wanting.
Something that doesn’t get a lot of attention today are actual atheistic arguments, arguments for the position “God does not exist.” This is the result of an odd situation that occurred in the mid-20th century in which atheists essentially did two things:
(1) they admitted their position could not be defended and gave up trying to do so, and
(2) they still did not abandon their indefensible position, but instead shifted their position to a much more defensible one, agnosticism—except they did not do this honestly and openly, but redefined ‘agnosticism’ and ‘atheism’ so that they two words are now supposed to mean essentially the same thing (despite the fact that ‘agnosticism’ had been coined in explicit contradistinction to atheism, and also despite the fact that the loud atheist minority did not bother to ask permission of the agnostics before forcibly co-opting their identity).
What are the arguments that God does not exist? How strong are they? There are only four, to my knowledge, and if you suspect they are not very strong, given that atheists themselves recognized their complete failure, you would be correct.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve been active on social media. In that time, I’ve discovered that many atheists are active on social media as well and they often target me for my views on Christianity. I’ve learned much about many of their views, so this article offers some arguments to present my views in the context of theirs.
One discovery I’ve made is that many want “evidence” for my faith in Christianity. They don’t want to hear that many of the two billion Christians in the world have strong personal testimonies. This “anecdotal” evidence, even when considered collectively, is not enough. I told them that I could collect testimonies from a thousand people in my church to create an empirical study using subjective content analysis, which would analyze themes and patterns. They reply that they need physical evidence. Of course, they know that I can’t produce physical evidence of the metaphysical.
Join Max Kolbe and Professor Stephanie SJ Thomason for a discussion on atheism. Topics include Professor Thomason and essays to leading online atheists, including concepts of Hell in Christianity, traditional role of theism in Buddhism, Jesus myths, .