What Does Being Agnostic Mean?

In a world where people are often labeled as being either highly religious (whatever that religion may be) or atheist, it is very easy to overlook a third option when it comes to general religious world views. This third option is Agnosticism, and people who follow it are Agnostic.

Agnostics have a very simple belief – that the existence of God or any other divine powers, is not only unknown, but unknowable. Rather than pick what is commonly seen as two sides of the coin (religious or atheist), agnostics take a more balanced and logical approach by saying that they don’t have the necessary knowledge to pick the right side, and they will never be able to do so ever.

Now can this potentially seen as a cop-out? Certainly. But at the same time, agnostics are taking the most sensible approach when it comes to the divine world, which almost by nature is unknowable. Rather than putting their faith blindly into a divine spirit that they have never witnessed personally themselves, and rather than deny that such divine spirit even exists in the first place, they simply say that both possibilities are on the table, but proving either one to be the truth is simply impossible.

So how do agnostics go about living their lives? In reality, they live them almost identically to atheists. They do not go out to Church on Sundays, nor do they pray to God, which is quite similar to atheists. However, instead of ragging on people who believe in God like atheists often do, agnostics take a more tempered approach to the topic of religion. They (typically) won’t overtly go out of their way to bash religious people and in fact would often have a frank yet civil discussion on the topic.

While agnostics personally would not be able to come to the same conclusion as religious people on the topic of God, in my own personal experience agnostic people are simply people who rely on their reasoning skills more so than their sense of faith. In fact, the argument can be made that agnostics are more logically sound than atheists who simply deny that God exists due to a lack of proof. Agnostics take it one step further by admitting that there is no proof one way or the other, leading them to neither affirm nor deny God’s existence. And in reality, that is a perfectly reasonable and well-thought out point of view (albeit seemingly lazy and non-committal to some).