What the Hell is a Fundamentalist Atheist?

I have just gone through the two most stressful weeks of my life… I call them studying and taking final exams. How I made it out of there without a spontaneous conversion to Christianity is a miracle of Biblical proportions.

Anyway, I have those out of the way and I’m looking forward to enjoying this three-day weekend (I wish it were longer), and I haven’t been posting much recently because of above reason, so, I’m going to write a post now.

So I haven’t exactly been hearing the term an increased amount lately, but I think I’ve heard it one time too many, and despite my many rants on why I’m not a ‘militant’ Atheist, I don’t think I’ve spent enough time addressing these… terms… These terms which I feel are inaccurate, and which don’t make sense anyway.

A Fundamentalist Christian is a Christian who believes that every part of the Bible should be taken literally and followed to the letter (including the parts about stoning blasphemers). A Fundamentalist Muslim believes every part of the Koran should be taken literally, it’s hard to be a Fundamentalist Pastafarian because the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster says that you don’t have to follow every rule to the letter, but you get the picture…

But Atheists don’t have any text-document telling them what they have to believe. All that one has to do to be an Atheist is to not believe in God (the dictionary says that you have to have faith in there not being a God… the dictionary is flawed). So, really, to be a Fundamentalist Atheist, you simply have to not believe in God… doesn’t that make ALL Atheists Fundamentalist Atheists?

Just where is the line drawn? What constitutes a Fundamentalist Atheist?

If you’ve got an answer to that question, please share it with me. I am genuinely confused.

Otherwise, it would be prudent to not use that term anymore since you obviously don’t know what it means.

While you’re at it, if you’ve got a definition of a Fundamentalist Atheist, please tell me how you apply it to Dan Dennett, Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, and Sam Harris. What’s so fundamentalist about them writing books?

I hath spaketh my mind.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Miykael Poly on January 20, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    =) I think religious fundies would say that fundamental atheist is a person, who wont teach his/her kids to love Jebus. Someone who insists on the right for freedom of speech and dares to defy their god.

    In essence, a atheist who actively refuses to submit to their will.

  2. The religious like to use terms that we use against them in an attempt to drag us down to their level. They know they can’t win so they simply try to make us appear as illogical and dogmatic as they are.

    They call creation a science, They say atheism is a religion and they call us fundamentalists. They even go as far to say religion and science compliment each other, Though i’m yet to hear a scientist use that argument to give credibility to science. They tend to rely on empirical testing and evidence.

    It’s a grown up version of “yea…. well so are you!”

  3. I don’t like the term either.

    From my understanding of fundamentalism, a fundamentalist atheist is someone who adheres to strict doctrine about atheism and will never consider anything outside of that. While I’m sure that describes some atheists, to apply it to atheists in general isn’t accurate or valid. Atheists in general don’t have a “doctrine” and most share only their non-belief in a higher power in common.

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