Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Disbelief in or denial of the existence of God or gods.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The doctrine that there is no God; denial of the existence of God.
  • noun The denial of theism, that is, of the doctrine that the great first cause is a supreme, intelligent, righteous person.
  • noun A practical indifference to and disregard of God; godlessness.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The disbelief or denial of the existence of a God, or supreme intelligent Being.
  • noun Godlessness.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Belief that no deities exist (sometimes including rejection of other religious beliefs).
  • noun broadly Rejection of belief that any deities exist (with or without a belief that no deities exist).
  • noun Absence of belief that any deities exist (including absence of the concept of deities).
  • noun loosely, uncommon Absence of belief in a particular deity, pantheon, or religious doctrine (notwithstanding belief in other deities).

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun the doctrine or belief that there is no God
  • noun a lack of belief in the existence of God or gods

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[French athéisme, from athée, atheist, from Greek atheos, godless : a-, without; see a– + theos, god; see dhēs- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

16th century French athéisme, from athée ("atheist"), a loan from Ancient Greek ἄθεος (átheos, "godless"), from ἀ- (a-, "without") + θεός (theos, "deity, god"). First English attestation dates to 1587 (OED).

Examples

  • So if you wanted to see a load of tweets about atheism, you would search for #atheism in Twitter search, and find a load of hashtagged results!

    Planet Atheism

  • Atheists can point out flaws in our beliefs – which is perfectly in keeping with the term atheism, as atheism often arises in reaction to a specific form of theism.

    God Is Nothing « Publius the Geek

  • Refusing to use the term atheism might be more trouble than it's worth.

    What is an Atheist?

  • Since its first coming into use the term atheism has been very vaguely employed, generally as an epithet of accusation against any system that called in question the popular gods of the day.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 2: Assizes-Browne

  • One of the things I liked about Sweeney (other than her total honesty about something so personal) is that she rejects the term atheism out of hand because it describes her lack of belief in religious terms.

    Electronic Cerebrectomy

  • One of the things I liked about Sweeney (other than her total honesty about something so personal) is that she rejects the term atheism out of hand because it describes her lack of belief in religious terms.

    Electronic Cerebrectomy

  • I have already addressed some of the features of what I call "atheism lite versus Christianity lite."

    Bishop Pierre Whalon: Why I Am Not An Atheist

  • Dawkins not only admits his atheism is a personal, subjective choice, but he roots it is his FEELINGS!

    Dawkins: Shallow Elation and Retreat

  • Pew studies tend to be fairly carefully done, but I get a bad feeling when "atheism" is lumped in as a religion - they clearly don't get the idea of what the null set means.

    religious change in the us

  • Pew studies tend to be fairly carefully done, but I get a bad feeling when "atheism" is lumped in as a religion - they clearly don't get the idea of what the null set means.

    tingilinde:

Comments

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  • Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

    October 21, 2008

  • Notice, Shockofgod...the definition is not "madness."

    April 7, 2010

  • Contemplating atheism is 6.6 times more likely than brewing your own wine to lead to fractures.

    January 24, 2013