Atheism is not a belief system. Any positive belief that an atheist has has another source.
Actually, I've grown to see that Atheism is a belief system. One of the people to influence my viewpoint was atheist Penn Jillette
, from the Penn & Teller duo.
Penn was interviewed for NPR's series "This I Believe" in 2005.
His opening statement:
I believe that there is no God. I'm beyond atheism. Atheism is not believing in God. Not believing in God is easy — you can't prove a negative, so there's no work to do. You can't prove that there isn't an elephant inside the trunk of my car. You sure? How about now? Maybe he was just hiding before. Check again. Did I mention that my personal heartfelt definition of the word "elephant" includes mystery, order, goodness, love and a spare tire?
Penn goes on. I'm a Christian and yet I found the whole interview quite powerful and insightful.
Now, granted, Penn starts off saying he's BEYOND atheism and that atheism is not believing in God. I did like his statement "I believe there is no God." It may be a grammar thing, but that statement is more positive and direct than "I don't believe in God." Tell me what you believe, not what you don't.
Then, later, I found images like this image:
For something that ISN'T a belief system, looks like they sure are trying hard to proselytize. Now, granted, this group does not represent every atheist.
To claim 'belief in the physical world is equally a position of belief/faith as 'belief in the metaphysical' is patent foolishness. That is the claim that too many entertain as a valid argument allowing Creationism in the classroom. It's absurd.
It is the sort of poor thinking that Creationists utilize to claim their beliefs should be accounted equal to the beliefs of science, though. However, science doesn't work on belief as faith. The beliefs of science are knowledge of facts and knowledge of tested, verifiable, and replicable results. There is no issue of faith what so ever. Similarly, asserting Atheism is a belief as faith is simply wrong. It no more works from a position of faith than does science.
Just for the record, there are millions of Christians that believe in creation, yet reject Creationism. Please do not confuse their misrepresentation of facts with our sound beliefs.