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To believe….or not to believe…"what?" is the question…


4:36 am
September 11, 2011

Pantheist Atheist


posts 38

Ok, so I just happened to run across a random atheist forum while googling something, and I discovered a whole debate about whether atheists can / or "should" believe in anything supernatural…there are apparently atheists who believe that a "good" or "proper" atheist will completely disbelieve the presence or existence of ANY phenomena not currently explained by our current understanding of the various fields of science.

For example, it was brought up that at least one poster believed it was possible that ghosts might exist.  Not that they believed in ghosts necessarily, but that they weren't willing to rule it out entirely based solely on our understanding of what we think ghosts might be IF they WERE real.

Obviously, the "textbook" definition of an atheist or agnostic has nothing to do with any form of supernatural existence except that of a God or gods, so the question was not so much about the definition itself, but how each individual understands their own concept of what it means for other potentially supernatural phenomena to self-identify as atheist/agnostic.


That got me curious about the members of this group, small as it may yet be….if you consider yourself an atheist/agnostic, do you still believe in the existence of other "supernatural" phenomena?

Also, how do you view atheists who don't believe in God but DO believe in (or at least don't disbelieve) in other "supernatural" phenomena like ghosts, psychic powers, etc.?

11:23 pm
September 11, 2011


United States


posts 16

I define myself as an Atheist but I do believe there is a supernatural figment to our selves. I do know someone who has seen ghosts and has had many experiences in the past. I believe in certain cases there are people who are trapped here on earth to finish something, or to find something about themselves. You might be thinking I think that when those people finish their debts or whatsoever, that they go to heaven, but I don't. I think that they experience the same as we do when we reach our end of the road. We just release and no longer feel anything.  I like to describe the feeling as sleeping without dreaming. You don't think and you are totally unaware of yourself. That is how I imagine death. We cease to exist.

11:23 pm
November 8, 2011



posts 3

  I do not believe in anything supernatural.  If it exists, it is natural, and someday we will have actual evidence of it.  when it comes to ghosts and the like, many people have tried many times to prove they exist and so far still not one iota of actual evidence.  Seems to me there comes a point where you call BS.  However I am always open to new data.

3:01 am
November 17, 2011


Sheridan, Wyoming


posts 15

I think that the same rationality that brings one to an Atheist conclusion, would also bring you to the conclusion that NO, ghosts do not exist. 

11:04 am
March 29, 2012

Clark Stinson, Jr.

Nashville, Tennessee


posts 19

I would have to say that my views on the supernatural is the same as I view god, there is not enough evidence to disapprove god/supernatural as much as there is not enough evidence to  prove god/supernatural existence. Therefore, I will dismiss both god and supernatural unless there is actual solid evidence of such nature. I’ve experimented in attempting to find some evidence which I had been around grave sites, done the Ouija board, gone to so called haunted places and there’s nothing. The only paranoia that I see occurred in those situations people who confuse their imaginations with such experiences.

"Thank logic I'm an Atheist!"

11:08 pm
April 7, 2012



posts 15

Super-natural is just a nice way of grouping things we can't explain and for some people it means using the g word, and for some it means "spiritual". By introducing the g word or s word, it hasn't logically solved or helped understanding of what you don't understand, it just means you can be lazy and not try to understand because you have a bogus answer. (I copied from Wikipedia) Occam's razor (also written as Ockham's razor) is the English equivalent of the Latin lex parsimoniae — the law of parsimony, economy or succinctness. It is a principle urging one to select among competing hypotheses that which makes the fewest assumptions and thereby offers the simplest explanation of the effect. If you don't need it, cut it out.

9:00 pm
November 26, 2012

Kara Estes


posts 2

I believe that which has supporting evidence.

The supernatural has no supporting evidence.

Therefore, I do not believe in the supernatural.


While I would never make the claim that atheists who believe in the supernatural are not "good" or "proper," I do not believe they are rational and fail in the area of skeptical thinking.

12:32 am
November 27, 2012



posts 1

Not believing things is a lot of work and there are so many things not to believe in.  A fact about humans is that we have hard-wired biases that cause us all to make the same mistakes.  We generally all see certain optical illusions the same way. Likewise, we come up with explanations for our experience so fast that we mistake the explanations for our actual experience.  But we can learn that we make these mistakes.  For instance, scientists learn to triple check and cross check to try and avoid sample biases because our brain exaggerates the importance of a small number of events.  The only explanations I find useful are those that can be replicated and make some sense in a broader context of a network of explanations.  CS Peirce said that truth is an infinite number of people making an infinite number of observations over an infinite amount of time and I like that idea.  Anything supernatural, magic and so on explains things but the observations are always extremely small samples and they cannot be reproduced.  They stand alone as mysteries independent of the physical world they inhabit.  It extremely paradoxical that they could influence the physical world and not be subject to its laws and if they are subject to its laws they why can't we observe them and if they are not subject to the laws of the physical world then how can they influence things?  The whole idea is so bizarre that it is not so much a matter of not believing in it but not figuring out how it would be possible to believe it it.  It is like not believing in led marshmallows or something.  So, as I was saying "not believing" is not quite the way I look at it. 

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