Atheism ‘as natural to humans as religion’

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Atheism does not appear to have been a recent invention.
Far from being an invention of the modern world, atheism has actually been around for thousands of years.
The idea that mankind is naturally predisposed to believe in a god is something that has been debated by scientists for years, but while many subscribe to the idea that atheism as a concept is something that has only arisen relatively recently, new research has suggested that it may have actually existed far longer than anyone had suspected and was common even in ancient times.

In a new book entitled ‘Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World’, Prof Tim Whitmarsh has traced atheism as far back as the sixth century BC where prominent Greek thinkers such as Xenophanes of Colophon had openly expressed a disbelief in supernatural gods and deities.

Plato also spoke about ‘non-believers’ in a historical context in the fourth century BC.

“Rather than making judgement based on scientific reason, these early atheists were making what seem to be universal objections about the paradoxical nature of religion – the fact that it asks you to accept things that aren’t intuitively there in your world,” said Prof Whitmarsh.

“The fact that this was happening thousands of years ago suggests that forms of disbelief can exist in all cultures, and probably always have.”

Originally posted 2016-03-30 21:09:12. Republished by Blog Post Promoter