An introduction to agnosticism
Anthony Kamau Githinji
Agnosticism is based on the premise that the existence of God cannot be proved or disapproved. Theology is the study of concepts of God and the nature of religious truths. Agnostics believe that theology is pointless if the existence of God cannot be proved. Atheists meanwhile do not believe in the existence of a God or gods. Agnostics are neither theists nor atheists (Smith, 2003, pp. 10 - 13).
The main question that atheists, theists and agnostics seek to grapple with is the existence of God. Theologians do not have a consensus on the definition of the word God or proof of his existence. Theological attempts at defining God or his existence are mainly based on faith or belief. However, some religions attempt to personify the existence of God through statues or animal worship. Others consider the occurrence of events such as earthquakes as proof of the existence of a deity and term these events as ‘Acts of God’. There are agnostic theists and agnostic atheists (Smith, 2003, pp. 21 - 26). Agnostic theists accept the existence of God but insist that his nature and attributes are unknowable. Agnostic atheists do not necessarily deny the existence of a God but insist that it is impossible to completely deny his existence (Smith, 2003, p. 11).
In my view, agnosticism, in all its forms, is the legitimate response to questions about God s existence and his attributes. Theism requires the suspension of reason and insists on faith in God (Smith, 2003, p. 13). Atheists meanwhile have gone out of their way to disprove the existence of God. Until Gods existence can be satisfactorily confirmed or denied, agnosticism seems to be the most sensible stand on the issue.
Smith, G.H. (2003. Atheism: The Case Against God. Retrieved from http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/jksadegh/A%20Good%20Atheist%20Secularist%20Sk...