Atheism Typologies

tpk: preface
The phenomenon of atheism is quite distinct from both the argument against the existence of gods or the simple living without gods, just as the playing of football is different from the study of the sport -- its history, its development, significant players, its role in society, etc.. These pages are an attempt at collecting some of the widely diverse writings regarding the phenomenon of atheism. Up until recently the phenomenalism of atheism has been written almost exclusively by non-atheists, primarily Christians, in efforts to dissuade fellow believers from falling into such a 'trap' of disbelief. Anti-atheistic writings have also been used as apologetics, explaining the 'superiority' and 'rationality' of Christian faith.

For the most part the citations included herein are commentaries on the phenomenon of atheism alone, going beyond the argument against theism itself. The purpose of this collection is not to argue the case for atheism but to offer the reader a glimpse at the breadth of thought devoted to understanding the varieties of atheistic experience.

Writings by atheists themselves can be classified into three main areas:
(1) evidential atheism, or anti-theism, from confirmed anti-religionists like Voltaire and Baron d'Holbach, both of the 18th century;
(2) the atheism of suspicion, founded in the critique of religion from the social sciences of economics and psychology promoted by the 19th century luminaries Marx and Freud; and
(3) religious atheism, as old as daoism and buddhism, places atheism within the sphere of the secular world and religious relativism.

Friends have remarked that introductions to the material would benefit the reading. At this time i am not able to provide introductions to all of the sources, and am actually quite content that they stand by themselves as untouched primary sources without the editor's first remarks. The selection of these texts is totally subjective, chosen from what varied sources i could find. I have tried to include citations from all sources presenting a different slant on atheism.

tpkunesh 1988 / 1996 / 1998

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created 1jun1996, revised 20mar98     |     comments on this site? tpkunesh@atheisms.info