A simple analogy with black and white marbles
Two guys are walking in a mall and see a huge jar with black and white marbles.
One guy says “there are an even number of black marbles”.
The other guy says “I don’t believe you” or “I don’t know”.
He is not asserting an odd number, he just doesn’t have confidence in the initial assertion.
Two flavors of atheism
There are two types of atheists, gnostic and agnostic.
“I don’t believe in the assertion that there is a God”.
“I don’t believe there is an even number of black marbles”.
“there is no God”
“odd number of black marbles”.
An antitheist is one who opposes belief in a god or gods,
they can be gnostic or agnostic.
Christopher Hitchens, an antitheist, says religion is harmful to society.
“Even number of black marbles are a bad thing and should not be allowed”.
Academic Definition of Atheism
I am using the colloquial, popular internet definition of atheist.
If I were using the Stanford Encylopedia definition then
an atheist is one who positively asserts “there is no God”.
I value lowering the friction in a conversation, so
I will go with the internet version unless
the person needs the proper version.
I’m good with either.