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July 15th, 2013
02:50 PM ET

Behold, the six types of atheists

By Dan Merica, CNN

(CNN) - How many ways are there to disbelieve in God?

At least six, according to a new study.

Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious traditions.

“The main observation is that nonbelief is an ontologically diverse community,” write doctoral student Christopher Silver and undergraduate student Thomas Coleman.

“These categories are a first stab at this," Silver told the website Raw Story. "In 30 years, we may be looking at a typology of 32 types.”

Silver and Coleman derived their six types of nonbelievers from 59 interviews. We're pretty sure we've spotted all six in our comments section.

1) Intellectual atheist/agnostic

This type of nonbeliever seeks information and intellectual stimulation about atheism.

They like debating and arguing, particularly on popular Internet sites.

(Ahem.)

They're also well-versed in books and articles about religion and atheism, and prone to citing those works frequently.

2) Activist

These kinds of atheists and agnostics are not content with just disbelieving in God; they want to tell others why they reject religion and why society would be better off if we all did likewise.

They tend to be vocal about political causes like gay rights, feminism, the environment and the care of animals.

3) Seeker-agnostic

This group is made up of people who are unsure about the existence of a God but keep an open mind and recognize the limits of human knowledge and experience.

Silver and Coleman describe this group as people who regularly question their own beliefs and “do not hold a firm ideological position.”

That doesn't mean this group is confused, the researchers say. They just embrace uncertainty.

4) Anti-theist

This group regularly speaks out against religion and religious beliefs, usually by positioning themselves as “diametrically opposed to religious ideology,” Silver and Coleman wrote.

“Anti-theists view religion as ignorance and see any individual or institution associated with it as backward and socially detrimental,” the researchers wrote. “The Anti-Theist has a clear and – in their view, superior – understanding of the limitations and danger of religions.”

Anti-theists are outspoken, devoted and – at times – confrontational about their disbelief. They believe that "obvious fallacies in religion and belief should be aggressively addressed in some form or another.”

5) Non-theist

The smallest group among the six are the non-theists, people who do not involve themselves with either religion or anti-religion.

In many cases, this comes across as apathy or disinterest.

“A Non-Theist simply does not concern him or herself with religion,” Silver and Coleman wrote. “Religion plays no role or issue in one’s consciousness or worldview; nor does a Non- Theist have concern for the atheist or agnostic movement.”

They continue: “They simply do not believe, and in the same right, their absence of faith means the absence of anything religion in any form from their mental space.”

6) Ritual atheist

They don't believe in God, they don’t associate with religion, and they tend to believe there is no afterlife, but the sixth type of nonbeliever still finds useful the teachings of some religious traditions.

“They see these as more or less philosophical teachings of how to live life and achieve happiness than a path to transcendental liberation,” Silver and Coleman wrote. “For example, these individuals may participate in specific rituals, ceremonies, musical opportunities, meditation, yoga classes, or holiday traditions.”

For many of these nonbelievers, their adherence to ritual may stem from family traditions. For others, its a personal connection to, or respect for, the "profound symbolism" inherent within religious rituals, beliefs and ceremonies, according the researchers.

-

The authors of this study have graciously agreed to field questions from our commenters. If you're interested, please post your question below or tweet it to us at @CNNBelief. 

We'll take the best questions to the authors and the Q&A will be posted in a follow-up article. 

Please try to keep your questions related to the study itself.

Thanks,
Daniel Burke

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Holidays • Lost faith • Nones • Spirituality • Trends • United States

soundoff (9,518 Responses)
  1. Chuck

    I'm a blend of #3 and #4.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
  2. Anti-atni-theist non theist

    I believe that religions are a function of imagination. Therefore I feel they are unable to be policed and only able to be protested to a small degree.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
  3. Mendy

    God is a concept by which we measure our pain.–John Lennon

    July 17, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • Salero21

      Lennon is dead Jesus is alive. Atheism is total stupidity.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
      • Jaded

        Jesus is dead, if he ever existed at all. Faith is idiotic.

        July 17, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          You'll get no sense from salt shaker

          July 17, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
        • Rodents for Romney

          Jesus is the best gardener we ever had.
          (That other one from 2000 years ago, not so much).

          July 17, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
      • Anon

        Where is the evidence for this mythological Jesus?

        July 17, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
    • Enter "The Atheist Hunter"

      John who??? Oh you mean the dead guy with the little glasses. Oh yeah. What can he do for me now?

      July 17, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
  4. TDH

    Raised Episcopalian, therefore an absolute ritual atheist. My son the church organist? Likely a ritual atheist as well.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
  5. Nathalia Ergon

    Six categories? Far too simplistic. Why even bother? I suppose I have characteristics of several of the six. That simply shows that trying to categorize a set of beliefs or a non-acceptance of such is an exercise in futility. How many categories have you come up with for Christians? for Muslims? for Jews? for Buddhists? for Sikhs? for Pantheists? for Druids? I don't care what people believe or don't believe. I just don't want them making laws that infringe on my right not to believe in some almighty power that 'cares' about the falling sparrow and what kind of washing machine we need to buy.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
  6. Dyslexic doG

    Thomas Jefferson

    "Religions are all alike – founded upon fables and mythologies."

    "I do not find in orthodox Christianity one redeeming feature."

    "Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man."

    July 17, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
  7. Namel

    this is inflammatory and anti nontheism in its tone such as assciating actvism for the freedom of non relgion through the freedom of relgion with feminism and animal care. this is an offensive piece and is a perfect example of why the freedom of religion should be abolished. Humans can not handle this freedom as it still oppresses athiest expression and dignity

    July 17, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I doubt you'll find much support outside of totalitarians, whether left or right, for the end of freedom.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • Akira

      "....example of why the freedom of religion should be abolished. Humans can not handle this freedom as it still oppresses athiest expression and dignity."

      No. You realize that by posting that you feel religious freedom should be abolished so you can have atheist expression and dignity, you're denying religious expression and dignity?

      Nobody is being "oppressed" when it comes to religious freedom. You are free to either believe or disbelieve.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
  8. sly

    Day 4 and y'all still trying to prove you are right?

    Folks. Opinions. Y'all are all right.

    Those that believe in God, believe there is a God.
    Those that don't believe in God, don't believe in God.

    Those of you trying to prove opinions are right, are all WRONG, because opinions are never wrong.

    But ... go ahead and waste your time trying to prove the other side in wrong, because if you are trying, then you are fools, and none of us care what you think.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Why are you posting your opinion if you think it's so dumb for people to post opinions?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        My opinion is that sly's opinion is probably not the best opinion on this opinion board... whew! That was exhausting...

        July 17, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
    • sly

      Education Captain – you should consider a reading comphrension course.

      Those who do have a high reading comphrension can see that no one suggested posting opinions is wrong. This is a blog Private, and all we do is post opinions.

      As I noted, anyone claiming their opinion is 'right' and 'fact' is a fool. You seem to have some characteristics of 'fool' as well, but that wasn't my point. Learn to read.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        I have noted your foolish opinions, and I'm sorry to have done so.

        July 17, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        • sly

          Ah, those correspondence courses must be working Capt'n. It is fine to call my opinion foolish – that is your opinion.

          Now back to all these fools who are not content to express their opinions as opinions, and insist they are being factual.

          July 17, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          I don't believe all opinions are equally worthless, but you do, and that's perfect for me. Why not take your own advice and keep your worthless opinions to yourself? Or are you a hypocrite who believes opposite of what he says?

          July 17, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • Jake

      Sly, you’re missing a key point here. The existence of god(s) or lack-there-of is not simply a matter of personal opinion. There is an underlying truth – there either is a god or gods or there isn’t. Either god-believers are wrong or atheists are wrong. We may not know the answer with 100% certainty, but we do know with 100% certainty that they are not both right.

      July 17, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
      • sly

        Jake, that is exactly my point. Opinions are not facts. When they can be proven, one of these 'opinions' becomes a fact, and the other becomes 'wrong'. As you note, we don't know, and we sure as heck never will. I know I have a strong opinion about whether there is a God or not.

        Red Sox fans can tell Yankee fans all day: My team is the best. But don't expect Yankee fans to take that as fact.

        July 17, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
        • Jake

          Sly, opinion is not the right word. We are talking about views here, not opinions. Based on the facts available, it is my view that it is astronomically unlikely that there is a god. Therefore, it is perfectly reasonable for me to criticize others, who also have access to the same evidence, who come to a highly illogical conclusion that is almost definitely wrong.

          Similarly, to use your analogy, if the question was about which is the better baseball team between the New York Yankees and my local T-ball team, you could call that an opinion, it’s really not. If you think a t-ball team is better than the Yankees, your illogical conclusion should be rightfully criticized.

          It’s sort of like Atheism has played Religion in a million baseball games and won every one 1000 to 0 and some people think it’s rational to argue that Religion is a better team. That’s not an opinion, it’s an illogical view.

          July 17, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
  9. Sarah

    I despise the fact that agnostic/athiest or as I prefer "freethinkers" are being segregated from each other with these so-called divisions to drive a wedge amongst them. Athiests and agnostics everywhere; kindly ignore this article and farce research and continue questioning things rather than blindly following them. This article may be a conspiracy or propaganda. Carry on.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
  10. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    It looks like CNN just reformatted again, but to 15 per page...

    July 17, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • Topher

      Yes. And for some reason, whenever I post and the page refreshes ... none of the comments appear and I have to go select the specific page to see any of it.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Yeah, it's not taking me to anyone's post when I click on the link, and it's not taking me to my own posts after they post. terrible

      July 17, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      It's better than 10 per page though... by the time you're done typing the conversation was 5-10 pages away... that was ridiculous

      July 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • OTOH

      Yes, it's better... and good to see the "Recent Posts" is working again, but now, after having jotted down page numbers for my previous posts, those are all meaningless again - ** sigh **. Oh, well...

      July 17, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
      • OTOH

        Now, "Recent Posts" is off again.... grrrr!

        July 17, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
  11. friendly neighbor atheist

    thank you for this clarifying article, i especially enjoy reading the blurbs on famous/infamous and celebrity atheists. I don't really care what others think about my ant theist beliefs, just wish people would look past silly self indulgences and be REAL TO EACH OTHER.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
  12. Bart

    What happened to the 7th type which is look from within for thou are the Budda?

    July 17, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • ram

      Good point.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
  13. RICK

    I am a die-hard agnostic. the elements of the universe, our world and all things living is just too wonderful and complex to have started by itself. If a god exists he, she, or it can never, nor will ever, be capable or understood by man The problem I have is that religion is often cruel, condescending and, in at least one instance, exclusive to only those who accept its premise and beliefs. I am speaking of the religion that if you don't accept, "Down you go."

    July 17, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • toll

      die-hard agnostic? sounds interesting thanks for sharing

      July 17, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      toll, go away

      July 17, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      It sounds like you are describing deism, not agnosticism.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • Note

      They've made 5 films in the Die Hard series.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • ThorisGod

      Which god have you decided to be unsure about? All of them? The agnostic has chosen to be unsure about the existence of Thor?

      I never understood this about Agnostics... you know very well that Jesus did not walk the earth, join the rest of us in persecution, don't pretend there is not enough evidence.

      If you want to go on being unsure of the "chaotic" all powerful essence that science can't quite explain away yet, go ahead, but don't pretend you are unknowable about the existence of Shiva or Zeus. Come on...

      July 17, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Interesting if you use the technical of agnostic you have made a life long commitment to the lack of knowledge.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        Bill, you moron, agnosticism is not a "life-long" commitment. None of these positions are. Are you really as dumb as you portray yourself, here?

        July 17, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • Honey Badger Don't Care

      Yea but the 5th Element (elements of the universe) was also a Bruce Willis movie.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • Rodents for Romney

      Then you need some courses in Chaos Theory. All your "wonderful" things have perfectly natural scientific explanations. Complexity does not require intervention of any sort. It, and everything else arises spontaneously, and has been demonstrated in multiple ways, mathematically, and in super-computers to need no interventions. Intelligent design has been utterly debunked.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
      • lionlylamb2013

        Good days Rodent...

        If your so intellectually "oriented" than consider this. How are atomized essentials within a cellular body being fed and what sound reasoning tells the stories behind atomic feeding frenzies? Do atoms need sustenance in order to remain within the cellular confinements of celestially "orientated" Life augments and if so, "How does the propensities of the atomized cellular conditionings remain a constant veneration of venerable sublicenses"?

        July 17, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
      • lionlylamb2013

        Rodent...

        Though we "created" many technical marvels just exactly where does the intellectual hindsight for these technical marvels come from? Billy Gates was a garage based dreamer and to attribute Gate's abilities to sheer luck is not only preposterous but plum lunacies. Thomas Edison was another inspired genius despite his differences with his helper Nicolas Tesla's help.

        I do not support your naturalistic perspectives regarding Creationism(s). Yes, we are all a product, as being but a common building to be inhabited by the powers of God and Godliness virtues way beyond our self-lustered synopsis apprehensiveness conditionings around practicing makes perfection ideologies. For God does ever practice making His creations a wholesomeness of atmospheric biologic framed works of Gods highest acclaims!

        Our base-rooted freedoms of today is fast becoming a declination of depraved minds wanting emotionalisms over intellectualized advocacies appraised acknowledgments. It is of little wonders why we became one of Life's last fruits to fall upon this world's Godly enriched atmospheric biological diversities which did quite well in being sculptured by God's fashioning accords and mankind became His failing grace. 😦

        July 17, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
        • John 78

          So God woke up after 13+ billion years and said you know I am going to play a game with the mud and make someone in my image that does not play by my rules, that destroys my toys and only a small percentage are to my liking and when they don't I will smite them. Sounds like a strange creature.

          July 22, 2013 at 8:25 pm |
        • Evangeline

          According to God, He won't be mocked! Better watch out!

          July 23, 2013 at 1:07 am |
        • Edward

          ...beyond our self-lustered synopsis apprehensiveness conditionings around practicing makes perfection ideologies.

          This is not even a sentence. What is wrong with you, are you speaking in tongues now?

          September 3, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • Chuck

      I'm in Rick's camp. this put's me somewhere between #3 and #4. God may exist but religion on earth has it completely wrong.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • God wears panties

      Bill Deacon

      Interesting if you use the technical of agnostic you have made a life long commitment to the lack of knowledge.
      <
      He is not agnostic, rather a die hard deist.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
    • lionlylamb2013

      Hi Rick,

      Your shtick around you being an agnostic seems to be your temperament philosophy. For in the very beginning moments there was but the One. And the One divided itself into Two and kept up their divisional accords until they became separated via a mighty expansion whose rationed expansive rate seems to be attributed as being a "Big Bang".

      People of today's time period are lavishing their freedoms especially within the nation of the USA. Despite our governances ineptness to being literally negligent within their expenditures of being fiscally responsible, the rift of high financial obligations are far outpacing our nation's inappropriate funding proposals leaving our nation virtually bankrupt and its people literally penniless. Our nation's religious diversities keep this country's masses from revolting and amassing in forces to protest with populace support.

      We or those who instill many of our nation's nationalized "Alpharians", the governing bodies dare influences these types with subtle financial easements to eviscerate the nation's moralized majorities who feel rather then steal and in their fathomed conditionings the moral majorities allow such socialized "Alpharians" to continue on unabated. How much longer will it take for the moralized majorities to rise up and become a united front boldly standing against the governances that has put the USA upon its cliff edges? Is there time nowadays to peter and pauper in un-holiness spent offerings of tinged retreats?

      July 17, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
      • Rodents for Romney

        "Lavishing their freedoms".
        Is that Lion language or sheep talk ?

        July 17, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
  14. Frank

    I personally am an atheist but respect people have religion, and if I married someone of religion we would let our child decide what him/her wanted to believe in. On a completely irrelevant topic, this authors name is the most American name I've ever seen. Dan Merica. 'merica

    July 17, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • toll

      wow thanks for sharing

      July 17, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
  15. Drekor

    I suppose I'd be an Intellectual Atheist although, I like to examine and debate mostly just for the sake of a pursuit of knowledge but at the end of the day I don't really care whether a god exists or not

    July 17, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • toll

      wow thanks for sharing

      July 17, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • Topher

      You don't care where you'd spend eternity?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        If you can prove that humans have an eternal aspect to their being I will be considered about that aspect. I am concerned about the functioning of my liver, because I know it is important to my being; I am not concerned about any "soul" because nobody knows if it is there or not and nobody can show a rational reason to believe I have one.

        July 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
        • Topher

          You said you don't know if there is a soul or not. That still leads to the possibility there is. Don't you owe it to yourself to try to find out?

          July 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          Topher, I will carefully examine any evidence for a "soul." Any concept which is proved with verifiable methodology should be believed. If a soul were proved to exist, I would believe in it.

          July 17, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
        • Alias

          Even if you prove a soul exists, how do you know the bible is the correct book?

          July 17, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
        • Topher

          Alias

          Well, test it. What are its claims? Is it accurate? The Bible is a reliable collection of historical doc.uments written by eyewitnesses during the lifetime of other witnesses (automatic baloney detector) who claimed to experience supernatural events. It's proven trustworthy.

          July 17, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
        • Topher

          Cpt. Obvious

          What are your presuppositions on the universe's beginnings?

          July 17, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
        • Colin

          Topher said, "The Bible is a reliable collection of historical doc.uments written by eyewitnesses during the lifetime of other witnesses (automatic baloney detector) who claimed to experience supernatural events. It's proven trustworthy."

          Actually, the opposite is true. Just to concentrate on the four gospels for a moment, as they are the only books of the Bible that talk about Jesus life in any detail, NONE of the authorse were eyewitnesses. They wrote either 40 (the author of Mark) 50 (the authors of Matthew and Luke) or 60 (the author of John) after Jesus was crucified. Both Matthew and Luke had a copy of Mark when they wrote, but when they are not simply parroting him, their accounts of Jesus life are hopelessly inconsistent. John is wildly inconsistent with ALL of the other three gospels.

          No, unfortunately, the truth is that the gospels arre very unreliable as to what Jesus really said or did while on Earth, excpet in the broadest terms.

          July 17, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          I don't have any. Why?

          July 17, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
        • Topher

          Colin

          Wow, are you misinformed.

          Both Matthew and John were apostles, thus eyewitnesses. And Luke is considered, even among secularists, to be one of the greatest historians of antiquity.

          And the gospels are not inconsistent whatsoever. They each focus on a different aspect, that's true. For instance, Matthew's audience were Jews. Mark targeted Greeks, etc.

          July 17, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • Topher

          Cpt. Obvious

          So are you more a Big Bang kind of guy, or a Creation guy? I only ask so as to know where the foundations of the conversation should begin.

          July 17, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  16. aallen333

    Is their anything about life that is not already a miracle. The existence of the constellations is a miracle. How the universe operates with more precision than an atomic clock is a miracle. The formation of plants and insects is a miracle. The formation of the animals of the earth, sky and seas is a miracle. The formation of man is a miracle. If you attempt to use your reason to explain these miracles, your reason will always come up wanting, because for all practical purposes, there is no reason for any of this to exist. You must then ask yourself – if your reason is incapable of explaining these things, why would you think your reason will be able to explain the God who created all of these things?

    July 17, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • mason

      God & Nature identical.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
      • Grampa Caligula

        Welcome to Deism!

        July 17, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Your reasoning is exactly why I don't believe in a god. If we can't conceive of the "magic" of the operation of the universe and if we can't conceive of the being who would set up that operation, there's no reason to pretend we can.

      You said it.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Alex

      All of these things are indeed amazing, but just because we currently don't understand the science behind how the universe works doesn't automatically mean that a particular interpretation of God exists.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • buckleb22

      Their is no reason all of this exists and there does not have to be a reason it all exists.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
      • toll

        in your opinion

        July 17, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
      • Dippy

        There, not their.

        July 17, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • joshc

      Well said!

      July 17, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Athy

      The constellations are a miracle? Wow, who'd have thought? And it's "there," not "their."

      July 17, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Regretfully

      Yours is the old and stale argument from ignorance. Resons and meanings are not required for things to exist. Existance exists, period. Why do you need a reason? WHy does this reason need to be a god, especially your god, and not a magic, non-physical turtle, teapot or tricycle? Can you explain how something needing a reason to exist= a god?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      You seem to be redefining the word miracle to mean "Something we do not 100% understand about our natural world."

      From this definition, global climate change is a miracle, gravity is a miracle, bacterial digestion and pooping is a miracle, evolution is a miracle etc...

      You would fit right in just a couple hundred years ago when even more facts about the universe were unknown and thus considered miracles.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Leo

      Responses like this clearly show that the only opinion you can comprehend is your own.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  17. toll

    no matter what your belief, why do people on this site find it necessary to tell others. Looking for approval much, or even worse, disapproval? Would I be correct in saying this site acts in that way. For those to come and pick a fight or get emotional bj from like-minded posters.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • sam

      Well, it's an opinion blog. It's meant for stating opinions. It's apparent you don't like it; what's hilarious is that you're complaining about it by replying with a snotty 'thanks for sharing' to every post.

      Go find something else to do while the big kids talk.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
  18. Topher

    Nope. Def. not an atheist.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Akira

      Topher! Hi! Where have you been?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Topher

      Hi, Akira. How are you? Been going through some transitions at work. Hours moving all around.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      @Topher
      do you repair clocks for a living?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
      • Topher

        Ha. Funny.

        July 17, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
  19. rickytw

    I have a Blog on the subject. Everyone's welcome to read it and comment!
    Here is thew address
    http://richardgavatin.blogspot.com/

    July 17, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
  20. Rich

    I believe there is a Greater Power in our lives, I just don't believe in organized religion. I view religion as a tool to be used for control of the masses and as a cover for one's fears and sins, religion is the harbinger of war in the name of God. Religion is only a cover for our individual failures that we commit through our individual weaknesses. God however you define him brings us our own sense of peace and tranquility or sense of guilt for our minor transgressions. Finally, you do not need religion to believe in God as he exists in your heart and mind separate from the rest of humanity.

    July 17, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
    • bluewriter98

      Well said Rich!

      July 17, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I agree with you Rich, as far as you go. The question becomes though, presuming, as you do, that a higher power exists, what then is our just response?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Mic

      I agree with your Rich, and we don't seem to fit in the 6 types described in the article.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Bill Deacon
      How can you oppose organized religion as a member of the oldest, largest and (arguably) most crooked church in history?

      July 17, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • illusive

      What you are describing is called either Deism or Pantheism (depending on smaller details)

      Atheist means "Does not believe a god exists" Yes, this means that Buddhists are atheists as well.

      The fact that you believe in a "Higher Power" makes you a theist, and not an atheist. so for that other commenter, you are not included because you do not belong in it.

      July 17, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.