New Atheist Symbol October 23, 2007

New Atheist Symbol

At the Atheist Alliance International Convention last month, we were asked to pick an atheist symbol from a select list. That list had been shaped over several months of suggestions and revisions.

The “winning” symbol is seen here:


This process was started before the Richard Dawkins Foundation’s “Out Campaign” went public, so maybe the symbol is irrelevant now.

It looks nifty. But I have the same issue with it that I have with the Scarlet A. It doesn’t actually say “atheist.” No one outside the select few who pay attention to this kind of stuff will know what it means unless it hits a critical mass, which is unlikely.

(via Atheist Revolution)

[tags]atheist, atheism, symbol[/tags]

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  • Kate

    It looks like a ninja star…I don’t know, it just looks mildly violent to me. And I agree, no one knows what it means. Except adulterer. And uh…do we really need to taint our image more? 😛

  • I like it…I have a necklace w/the American Atheists logo, but according to my kids, it looks like the Jimmy Neutron cartoon logo. heh

  • Richard Wade

    That thing looks either like a branding iron for the Circle “A” Ranch or some science fiction fascist despot’s symbol of galactic terror who’s about to fry Planet Pleasant to a cinder. “Mwuhoohoohahahah! Behold the power of Asstrohole! Kneel before me or die!”

    I’m beginning to think even more that this whole overall symbol thing is a mistake. It plays right into the hands of people who want to claim that atheism is a religion. Don’t get attached to pretty little fetish objects.

  • Siamang

    Wow, now we’re a luxury car?

  • J.S.Brown

    I prefer a different symbol… the word, “atheist.”

  • Richard Wade

    Excellent idea, J.S.

  • Gadren

    Here’s the problem with saying that the symbol doesn’t “say ‘atheist.'” Does any symbol “say ‘X'”? Not to compare ourselves with Christianity, but does the cross “say ‘Christianity'”? No symbol will ever achieve a common recognition by anyone without reaching a critical mass, so your argument is against symbols in general, not an atheist symbol, and not this symbol in particular. It’s silly to expect people to know what any symbol means when it’s just been released.

    I think it only looks “violent” because of the red/black/silver color scheme they chose. If you look at the other images on their site, you might find them to be more appealing.

    If atheists want a symbol, we should have one. The idea that it plays into the hands of those who oppose us isn’t sufficient grounds. If we cared solely about not presenting a poor image of ourselves to theists, then no one would “come out” as atheist.

    And J.S., that’s a nice sentiment, but that’s not a symbol. It makes just as much sense as Hitchens saying that we shouldn’t be called “atheists” because we shouldn’t define ourselves by what we aren’t.

    As for my own opinion on this symbol… it’s not bad. I think that solidarity is most important, and so I have no intention of being a stick in the mud by using my own little subset of a symbol when everyone else uses another one. I do like the idea of the “null set” as the atheist symbol a bit more, but I like this one too.

    So, in short:
    Symbol? Yes! This symbol? Maybe.

  • unstable

    I can’t believe that nobody has noticed the close relationship to the traditional anarchist symbol of the circle-a:

    I personally have no problems with anarchism as a political philosophy but maybe atheists shouldn’t brand themselves in a way that can be mistaken for supporting a certain (whatever it is) political viewpoint.

  • Just off hand, it reminds me of an arrow pointing upwards, you know, to the heavens. There was one of the Jesus-freak cults in the early 70s that had one like that, I can’t remember which one.

    Symbols are pretty useless. If you’ve got the thing the symbol stands for, why bother with the symbol. If you don’t have it, the symbol is meaningless. But it’s a free country, until the next election gets stolen by Republicans.

  • It’s an A in a circle. Don’t we use those in our e-mail addresses ( So does this mean every Christian who sends an e-mail is promoting atheism?

  • Darwin-that’s hilarious 🙂

    As someone with a loooooooong background in communication, symbols DO mean a lot and CAN BE recognizable. A green circle with a white mermaid in it? The golden arches? The Jesus Fish? Apple? Donkey? Symbols in this age are logotypes.

    You’re right – not many outside of those who already know what it is are going to recognize it. They may ask about it, but I think it kind of has a Star Trekky kind of feel to it myself.

    Now, if you (collectively as a group) started using this in consistent branding through all ways, conventions, blogs, etc., etc….maybe it would slowly become associated. However, doing that now in an oversaturated culture is going to be extremely difficult…especially outside of the atheist population.

  • A symbol has to stand for something else besides just the lack of belief.

    I’ve always like the Greek letter Phi, which stands for Philosophy and also symbolizes the Golden Mean, an intersection of Science and Beauty. That’s a symbol that represents what I DO believe.

  • Zachary Moore, you do know that the “golden mean” was almost certainly the product of the thoughts of Egyptian, Greek and other priests, I hope. It’s use is associated with religious architecture from just about the beginning, philosophy too. As with “Occam’s razor (named for a Franciscan priest) and science , neither the “golden mean” or philosophy is the exclusive property of atheists.

  • Hi Hemant,

    I’m a long time reader but this is the first time I post a comment.

    While I do like the look of this suggestion for a symbol for atheism, I have a problem with every atheist symbol that is based around the letter “a” – it specifically refers to the English word for atheism. In Iceland atheists are called a “trúleysingi” (=faith-free), and I’m sure that there are many languages where the word for atheism is not derived from the Greek.

    The symbol for humanism is perfect in this international regard. But it’s not surprising that it’s harder to find a symbol that catches the essence of atheism, so if this ,,a” or Dawkin’s ,,a” gains support, I’ll settle for it 🙂

  • cygnus_darkstar

    A lowercase letter phi looks an awful lot like the symbol for the empty set (a zero with a slash through it).

  • I want to touch it and say, “Mr. LaForge, one to beam up.”

  • cygnus_darkstar

    and I don’t think Zachary Moore was arguing that philosophy is the exclusive property of atheists. More that atheism is bound with philosophy, as atheists usually become such after some serious introspection and thought about the bigger issues in life.

  • Rob

    It’s very nice photoshopping but how would it look on letterhead or a bumpersticker? I’m being serious- an effective symbol has to communicate itself through a variety of mediums. It seems to me this one got the vote just because it’s pretty.

  • I want to touch it and say, “Mr. LaForge, one to beam up.”


  • Polly

    It speaks to me, it says, “I was once part of an expensive automobile. The Acura.”

  • Vovic,



    this comment rocks!
    this comment is too nerdy.

    Or maybe just “this.”, like a Zen koan I have to meditate on.

  • @Gastren

    Actually, I think it was Sam Harris who said that.


    The American Atheists’ symbol is the standard atheist symbol with an “A” in the middle for “America”. I don’t see the point of branding notions of country into our identity, so why not just use the “atheist atom” alone? It has almost universal recognition and I’ve seen it on atheists’ tombstones.

    Plus, it looks cool if you ask me. And anyway, regarding the ability to have different symbols, as long as they retain the base design of the universally recognized one: the “A”, or the atom. Examples of this symbologic polymorphism in the religious community are the various stylized crosses of Christian denominations (or non-denominations (or whatever they’re called this week)) — the Methodists’ flame cross, the “modern” cut-out cross that looks like the pattern of light coming through a window (end result looks a lot like the Windows logo, actually). Yet they’re pretty instantly recognizable ’cause they all retain that basic cross image.

    Since our “atheist atom” symbol is in widespread use and generally understood, and has been used for a long time, and (bonus) is easy to draw (it’s just a parabola and a pair of ellipses, which also adds a nice mathematical touch now that I think of it), we should just stick with that one and permutations of it.

    And yeah, my first thought when I saw the circled A image up there was “car company logo?”, and the second was “Starfleet Command?”


  • Vincent

    If I wear one of those on my chest, everyone will think I’m a Trekkie!

  • I’m not really a big fan of the atheist atom. It has too much of a 60’s Sci-Fi feel for me. I didn’t understand why one of the orbitals was cut off, but now I see from your explanation that it’s supposed to be a parabola.

    How about something more fundamental: the atheist quark! How would that be drawn?! Or maybe atheist photon? atheist M-brane?

    Those are good points about the variety of crosses out there. It would be nice to have one symbol that could be varied but still recognized. I’m just not sure the atom is a good choice, since most people would think it means “radioctive!” or maybe, “Flash Gordon was here!”.

    It might also be better to have a symbol that is more “grass roots” and not associated with any particular atheist organization. I didn’t see the list of other choices, but has everyone seen this list from the IIDB thread?

  • ash

    ooh, ooh, do we get a free cape with that?

  • An email symbol? Come on, where are the creative atheists? People will just think you’re some kind of web developer geek.

    I like the Happy Atheist T-Shirt. Best design yet. And it’s not even Alliance-approved!

    Dawkins needs a new set of creatives over at campaign headquarters 🙂

  • Elizabeth

    It strikes me as a little strange that there is a Christmas version (even stranger that it’s written as xmas). Let’s develop one for all the religious holidays! Ramadan! Easter (with little spikes)!! Diwali! WHEEEE!

  • Polly

    You know, atheist doesn’t start with an “A” in every language, so this really is limited to the anglophone world.

    Russian: “????????” starts with an “N.”

    let’s see if the letters come through.

  • Polly

    Nope, they didn’t. And I didn’t get to EDIT either.

  • I think it’s a tendency of freethinkers to always want to invent new names, labels, identities, and symbols for themselves. Another tendency of freethinkers is to oppose all of the above. Freedom!

    Re the symbol itself, nifty! More nifty than anything else, really. I think it evokes the same futurism as does the atom, except without all the bad science. In physics, the Bohr model of the atom is famously wrong. The symbol is simple and recognizable, more so than the scarlet letter. It would go well on a necklace, but I think most atheists will react violently to the thought.

    The other side of it is that it hasn’t acquired any authority. I think the success of the scarlet letter has everything to do with, first of all, the marketing, and second of all, the authority recognition commanded by Dawkins. (I just know olvlzl’s going to jump on that one.) I think the authority of the symbol is far more important than anything else. But then, I really hate the Bohr atom and the Darwin fish based on their content, so maybe I’m refuting my own point.

  • Some other thoughts:

    They seem to be confusing freethought and atheism on the home page. They should know better!

    If you want there to be the word “atheist” in the logo, you should suggest to them that they add some renderings of the symbol with the word “atheist” underneath.

  • NYCatheist said,




    this comment rocks!
    this comment is too nerdy.

    Or maybe just “this.”, like a Zen koan I have to meditate on.

    It means “I agree with this.”

  • Mriana

    Hemant, don’t feel so bad that people don’t know what the Atheist symbol is. If you research the various Christian crosses, you will find they have pagan origins, which a lot of Christians don’t realize or even try to deny.

    The Ankh was the Egyptian fertility symbol and recently adopted by the “Vampire” community to symbolize the community as a whole.

    The sign of the Cross, Tammuz.

    The Celtic cross pre-dates Christianity.

    The Dakotas and Lakotas use the cross to represent the four winds.

    This link doesn’t go into details as well as I would like, but here’s an online link. It’s better to get a reliable book on these things though:

    The majority have no clue and the fish symbol, is actually pisces, for the Age of Pisces, but what Christian wants to admit that, because it admits to astrotheology.

  • Aj
  • Mriana

    Works for me! 😀

  • I guess if Christians get the + sign, you can claim the @. 🙂

    We agnostics take =

  • Richard Wade

    Badges? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges!

  • Thanks for the link. I kind of like this symbol, although I have seen others I like as well. However, I seem to be in a very small minority, so I am not expecting it to catch on any more than Dawkin’s A.

  • Looks like a hood ornament.

  • I love it. It’s clean, modern and will lend itself to good-looking jewelry. Yes, it looks like a hood ornament. “Mr. Laforge, one to beam up” is hillarious, but I still like it. I even think the resemblance to the anarchy symbol is kinda cool.

    Of course, this symbol is obscure as is Dawkins’s “A”. It’s our job to make it famous and commonplace.

  • redjellydonut

    I can’t believe only one of you (Vincent) saw the Star Trek connection!

  • jerry b

    um … I think the designers and promoters should be a tad bit concerned about Paramount calling.

    That looks a LOT like the Star Trek movie uniform lapel pins. Especially over that red background, given it’s the exact same color as the uniforms.

  • rishy

    We do not need a symbol! It makes us look like there is some sort of competition between US and THEM; it’s the last thing we need!

  • area man

    It’s the devil’s tail, curled up a ready to strike. I love it!

  • Max

    Looks evil. I’m not aligning myself with Darth Vader am I?

    Why is a symbol needed at all?

  • Siamang

    Okay, this is wierd.

    Today, at the bank, I saw a white Camaro with almost this exact symbol applied as a decal on the gas tank lid.

    The only difference is that the crossline on the A connected to the circle, not the leg.

    The car also had a cross necklace hanging from the rearview.

    Methinks someone else has claimed this symbol.

  • Mriana

    If it is on a gas tank lid that could be a car company, but I don’t think Acura has that symbol.

  • Monty

    It looks close enough to the Star Trek symbol it should be easier for people to pick up and remember. Good idea, though.

  • Siamang

    The symbol on the gas-tank was an owner-applied sticker.

    Unless Acura is selling after-market accessories for 15-year-old Chevys, I don’t think it’s that.

  • Mriana

    Oh ok. I don’t know then.

  • PasserBy

    The right leg of the A looks like a fish hook. A subtle snark re: Christianity? 😮

  • Cap’n Rufus

    Great! Just what atheists needed…a symbol. Maybe we can also come up a hymn.

  • Bacon

    Perhaps we can just have buttons made that say “I’m an Athiest – Ask me how!”
    Still, it is a pretty pin.

  • When I first saw this, I thought it was a link to an ad for the new Star Trek movie.

    I’m all for having a cool symbol for atheists, but maybe it would be good for something a little more identifiable – unless you want it to be a secret handshake kind of thing or a way to invite someone to ask you about it so you can explain to them what the symbol is and have a conversation.

  • …unless you want it to be a secret handshake…

    Good idea! If you meet another person on the road, you can draw half of it on the ground. If the person is a fellow atheist they will complete the symbol.



  • Mriana

    unless you want it to be a secret handshake kind of thing

    That’s how the “fish” symbol started supposedly. One person would draw the fish in the dirt or sand (or part of it, as NY said) and if the other person knew what it was, they knew they had ran into another X-ian. It was like a secret handshake in a way.

  • Grando

    I like the ? or the head with an exclamation mark in it. I’ve seen an asterisk as a suggestion too, but I think the American Atheists’ logo is very ugly and complicated.
    That A logo could suggest anything starting with an A. I think we need something simple and completely new.

    “We are all atheists about most of the gods that societies have ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.”

    – Richard Dawkins

  • Grando

    I like the empty set or the head with an exclamation mark in it. I’ve seen an asterisk as a suggestion too, but I think the American Atheists’ logo is very ugly and complicated.
    That A logo could suggest anything starting with an A. I think we need something simple and completely new.

    “We are all atheists about most of the gods that societies have ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.”

    – Richard Dawkins


    I think the symbol is very attractive and well thought out and unnecessary. I am reminded by some of the comments that many atheists are not joiners. Why should they be? I recall when a Unitarian, a classic joiner with a fat wallet full of membership cards, talked me into going to a service in Boston and promised that it would not be like a church. Well, it was a church, hymns were sung, preaching was preached and the only thing lacking was a body of doctrine.

    My idea for a symbol is the dead fish in a circle with a “not” slash through it.

  • Richard

    Someone would like to speak with you about copyright infringments…

  • Oerath

    Atheist’s shouldn’t have a symbol. You don’t have a codified set of beliefs, so why would you have a logo? It’s not even based on anything, it’s just an A. Find out what you personally believe based on the facts you have, and espouse those beliefs. Don’t let yourself be labeled with these jack-asses just because you’re mad at the Christians and the Muslims.

  • Cranky Media Guy

    More than anything, it looks almost exactly like the logo the magician Criss Angel wears on his stage clothing. Maybe there’s another way to go?

  • Tiger Yorktown

    You need a new ISP – the current one kept saying you exceeded your CPU limit. What a bunch of bullshit.

    The symbol looks like a Star Trek badge or an @ symbol. The fish with legs is sufficient to offset the fish. Atheist don’t need a symbol.

    nuff said

  • 3 words for you people:
    Chris Angel Mindfreak
    I saw this for the first time last night and low and behold what did I see at the end of his show? You guessed it – a great big red A in a circle.
    check out his online store Angel store
    We have to dump the A in a circle, now!

  • Jesus Christ

    I was drinking some wine with Moses tonight and we were talking about that “A” logo… I think it would make a kick ass neckless, but on your car, it would turn your Prius into an Acura… don’t you guys have better things to do like sue school boards in public schools over moments of silence? Anyway, let me know when your next arts and crafts festival is, King David has some kick ass quilts he’s been working on. Have a great night, and have fun “NOT” praying to me…

    P.S. My dad still loves you… even though you never send any Christmas/Birthday cards.

  • John

    Atheism should be the belief in living life, thus it needs no symbol it also doesn’t need a name since it is life, living it for yourself and others and not for some ‘spiritual’ being to praise and thank for it.

    Thus a symbol and the name atheism is pointless.

  • Amber

    I like it, but I had an idea a while ago. It struck me that the xian fish turned vertical with the tail end up looks like a…fertility symbol…yeah. Of course, if you colored in the fish part mauve it would be a little more obvious what you were trying to say.

    I’m certainly going to do it. If nothing else, it would confuse the neighbors. It would also mean that we wouldn’t have to produce any new symbols, we’d just have to spend five minutes in the xian bookstore buying one.

  • Mriana

    Oz Atheist said,

    October 27, 2007 at 2:56 am

    3 words for you people:
    Chris Angel Mindfreak

    Ah! S/he’s right! It’s pretty damn close! Not exact, but easy to be confused: The loop comes from the side, not one of the legs, but it looks too close to this one. It’s on his pants at the top center of the main page.

  • Faith

    Looks like an “A” in a hole…you might want to go with something else :-J.

  • Fred

    to paraphrase the cookie monster: “A is for A$$Hole thats good enough for me”

  • Fred

    Sort of looks like the devils tail curled up…

  • Friendly Atheist,

    You could always transfer to site to I think they can handle that type of traffic (for example, they host CNN’s political ticker blog: ) and it’s free 🙂


  • Terry

    I think a stylized version of daVinci’s man in the circle would properly indicate our focus on earthly reality.

  • DCW

    It’s a Star Trek comm-badge….I bet the atheists will all be screaming GOD HELP ME when Paramount sues them for 50 million in trademark infringement damages..
    LOL ‘Beam me up Jesus”

  • Pete

    I agree with a lot of posts here: The best symbol for us is no symbol at all. We show our beliefs by *not* wearing a cross, or star, etc. If anything, a symbol should be an empty circle or other empty container shape, but i’ve always thought that the biggest offense of the religious community was their inability to keep it to themselves; IMHO, widespread appearance of an atheist symbol would be no better in this regard.

  • The LAST thing you want to be associated with is Criss Angel. To me, he’s like half a step above Uri Geller. I don’t want to be seen, even accidetnally, as promoting some lame-ass fake psychic bullshit.


  • Mriana

    An empty circle would just perpetuate the idea that atheism is empty. The religious would point to it and say, “See? It is an empty belief.” I don’t think we want that either.

  • Maren

    It looks like the Anarchist symbol, another A in a circle. We don’t want to be associated with them.

    I don’t even like the term “a-theist.” It says I’m not something, and I’d rather say I am some other thing. We should have a positive term to describe ourselves.

    Instead of “Atheist” or “Bright” we should use the term “Rational” or “Clear Thinker” to describe ourselves. Religion is just irrational, delusional. We are the normal state of things, they have the polluted thoughts, they are irrational. Label them as not-something, or something wrong. Redefine the playing field.

    Labeling ourselves as “Rational” is labeling them as “Irrational,” which is an accurate description. Belief in invisible omnipotent capricious giants is irrational !

  • V

    There can be no symbol for atheists because there is no unifying principle that binds atheists: there is no source of moral absolutism, and therefore all things are relative to each individual. Based on that, there can be no meaning in any symbol you give to designate “atheist.”

    The best symbol for an atheist to wear is nothing: it sums up all that really needs to be said. By the way, I’m not banging on anyone here, but it just seems to me like a silly idea to try and create a unifying symbol: the very principle of atheists would suggest (in theory) that everyone is an individual and generates their own meaning and morals.

  • Atheists really don’t need a symbol: we’re not a religion or even a club. What we need is to speak up when religion is raised in a conversation. However, that didn’t stop me from creating my own symbol, which I like better than any of the others because it actually says: ATHEIST. Read about it here.

  • A club? Don’t put ideas in anyones head. Or clubs either.

  • Instead of “Atheist” or “Bright” we should use the term “Rational” or “Clear Thinker” to describe ourselves. Religion is just irrational, delusional.

    Yeah, that Wittgenstein was such a fuzzy thinker. William of Occam too. And you might as well include John Dalton and Asa Grey and Theodosius Dobzhansky, Gregor Mendel…. Not to mention any of the myriad of other faith-heads that you are so obviously more rational and less deluded than.

  • How about a nice peace sign?

    Identifying someone who doesn’t believe in God an Athiest is like calling a house not-a-barn, or a fork not-a-knife.

    I’d rather be defined by what I am than what I am not.

    It does look kinda cool though.

  • kevin.bravo

    looks like the uppercase symbol of the “@” symbol to me. perhaps people will think its part of a new email address?

  • Klaus

    So … wait … I don’t want to be cynical or needlessly inflammatory, but isn’t part of being an atheist to disavow public displays of religiosity (or, in this case, the lack thereof)?

    It’s not like it’s representative of an official organization like a Masonic handshake or the Star of David, that when you see one another on the street, you can rap about life and times in Local Non-believers 834 and “those damn Jesus-freaks!”

    How long do you before you get your own clubhouse and start to formalize how to believe in not believing? If that’s the intention, inventing your own signs and indicators is a big step in that direction! Just make sure you get tax-exempt status for your meeting halls, it can be quite a useful perk.

  • Jeffrey Fogel

    It’s sad to see that you so called “enlightened” Atheists would push your beliefs on people. One reason I hate religion is for that simple fact. You, the “Modern Day” Athiests, are no better then the churches you proclaim to hate. I’m agnostic, but I also belive that religion can be about the most destructive thing on the planet, and you so called “athiests” are starting up a whole new Following. You are blindly following your faith that there is no god, which you can not completely prove….. May your new symbol force many people to your belief.

  • Brian

    kinda stupid, looks more like a Anarchy symbol from the Punk rock days, but, what do ya expect from these people.

  • sandswipe

    Terrible, for all the previously posted reasons.

    If athiesm is focused on the belief in the power of life above that of the supernatural, why not do something with a double helix? It’s not found anywhere in nature that a human can see without the aide of a whole lot of rational thought building up to the electron microscope.

    Maybe null set sign with a double helix used for the cross, possibly separating to form an A? No wait, that would still turn into the Anarchy symbol.

    Anyway, a message matters more then a symbol. I’m sure athiesm will grow with or without it’s own sign.

  • I just came across this site, and was more surprised that atheists have annual conventions. Are there atheist leaders who speak at these conventions to reaffirm to the gathered atheists of what they don’t believe in… NEAT!
    I love Irony

  • Jesus Christ

    I just got back from my ski retreat with Noah and wanted to check in to see how the whole “Crazy A” necklace was coming along. Its neat I guess… I was reading the blogs and it looks like you have conventions?! How was I not invited. I am like the entire reason for the convention… (And I am the reason for the “Season”) Great bumper sticker by the way. I think the necklace should be changed to a clear plastic bubble. Then the air inside the bubble would symbolize what you belive in… nothing. You better hurry with that one because I think the scientoligists might steal that one soon. I passed by one of those science places the other day for a free “Stress test” and man I was a bit stressed… it bummed me out. Anyway, good luck with the whole removing my dad’s name from money, the constitution, and any book within 300 feet from schools… he sends his love as always.

  • Richard Wade

    Hey “Jesus Christ”:

    You weren’t invited because you have no address.

    No, you’re not the entire reason for atheist’s conventions. You have nothing to do with it, so don’t flatter yourself. Atheists convene to find solutions to the problems that some of your followers cause them, real dedicated disciples who practice such “loving” things as slander, shunning, vandalism, blackballing, firing from jobs, harassment, beatings and even murder. Have a long talk with those assholes who claim to be “glorifying” you before you come around here to show off your abysmal ignorance about us.

  • Danny Wisdom

    can you say star trek…………beam me up
    looks like the federation logo

  • Danny Wisdom

    hey jesus next time you see your dad tell him i still believe………….

  • Fred

    Criss Angel will sue your asses!

  • Mriana

    Who was that nut? He sounds like he needs to have the men in white coats carry him off to the funny farm. Richard, I don’t think it’s abysmal ignorance. Schizophrenia, maybe.

  • Fred

    The idea that atheists need a symbol is ridiculous. The fact that the winning entry resembles a Star Trek symbol makes it even more farcical. You certainly won’t catch me wearing it.

  • It looks like the symbol for that “magician” Criss Angel.

  • Why does atheism need an official symbol? It’s not an organization. I find the idea of an Atheist symbol to be offensive. I don’t want to Identify with other atheists by conforming to some standard symbol.

    At least the creators had a sense of humor about it… making it look like star trek meets anarchy, and then using that cliche’ photoshop glow effect.

    Thanks for making atheism a joke, guys.

  • Jeremy

    I vote for the Darwin fish with feet. It’s cute, funny, visually striking, and it’s obvious what it represents.

  • WurdBendur

    It looks like a variation on the at sign. In any case, I don’t think lettering should ever be used in a symbol. It’s a symbol and should be independent of any language. That should have been one of the basic requirements, and this shouldn’t have even been in the “select set” that apparently weren’t very select. It should not have been an option.

    Also, it should look good on a necklace or whatever. This thing just looks excessive. And it should be sturdy if carved out of wood, cast in metal or plastic, or otherwise presented physically, even the really cheap and flimsy stuff. This thing will break.

    If there is anything that isn’t wrong with this, I can see exactly one: It’s all one piece with no closed space or floating parts. That’s especially important for the above points.

  • Christians have the cross which is a symbol for the belief that Jesus died for their sins… And that this dying provides half of the requirements of getting into heaven (the other half is the believing).

    Atheists, of course, don’t believe that. But of course, neither do all non-Christians. What separates atheists from other non-Christians is that atheists don’t believe in any similar (but different) notion about God and afterlives.

    If there was a universal God symbol, then an easy atheist symbol would be some kind of negation of that universal God symbol. Although, religions all typically serve to differentiate themselves from each other. I know of no universal theism symbol that could be modified for atheism. So therefore, until someone comes up with something better, I kind-of like the A in a circle.

  • victor

    I see several folks who don’t like the idea of a symbol at all. And I agree with the fact that atheists are not a club or a religion. But I do think it’s a good idea for a symbol of belief (or lack of) to be seen. It shares an idea to the rest of the community that there are people out there who aren’t hiding how they feel.. And hopefully might get them to feel it’s ok to confess they really don’t believe in god because they see others who do. And besides, in a sea of crosses, it would be nice to see a symbol I agree with once in awhile.

    Well, just a thought, anyway.
    But don’t care for the @ either…

    How about a stylized eye in a circle suggesting we believe in what we see? Or a brain that suggests we use it?

  • looks alot like the symbol my friends band uses

  • I did an Anarchy sign you can use…

  • Robert Mansfield

    EVERYONE QUIT PATRONIZING IT AND EXCEPT IT! its fine! let it be thats that if its like that then so what what are we going to do about it. don’t be like those Muslims that want to push there religion on everyone.

  • OK, but mine’s better.

  • Eric

    I really like this symbol. I like it much better than the atom and the invisible pink unicorn combined.

    It reminds me of the Acura emblem on my car. hehehe…

  • Greg

    when I saw this symbol I was waiting for Chris Angel to crawl out of my monitor and show me that the dollar he just tore up is back in one piece and that my signature was intact.

  • John

    how do u know that there is no god? please enlighten me…

  • Betty

    i think there is a god. how can u not see that!!!!!

  • what are you franchising atheism here? I think God exists in another dimension and is phased in valiance sheaths. Basically he is very small and the Universe is finite and energy of it = God. He can be accessed by higher dimensional tuning. I built a machine I call the automatic Scimitar and notice electromagnetic consistency to ghost realm which is in the direction of God. Its in videos on MinorPhaserBurns. But good luck– Atheism could use a shot in the arm!

  • John, Betty,

    I’m not sure anyone is looking at this comment thread anymore. Try the newly opened forums for more discussion:

    (Short answer: most atheists do NOT say they know there is no god. Just like I don’t know there are no fairies, but the lack of evidence suggests the default position is a lack of belief. A discussion can be had on what exactly is to be considered evidence relating to the question of god(s).)


    Finally someone is making sense around here! Have you investigated the time cube?

  • Hey Thanks! I’ll look into the time cube. My condolensces on the Yankees.

  • WurdBendur

    EVERYONE QUIT PATRONIZING IT AND EXCEPT IT! its fine! let it be thats that if its like that then so what what are we going to do about it. don’t be like those Muslims that want to push there religion on everyone.

    Hey, this guy is right. Let’s just accept everything and stop trying to change things. If some distant power says that’s the way it is, then that must be the way it is, so I guess they’re right about God too. I think I’m going to become a Muslim now.

  • Emilie

    This looks TOO MUCH like the criss angel thingy.
    that’s probably what that one person saw on that car.
    i’d be okay with having a way to identify ourselves or whatever… but eh, no.
    not this one.
    it’s just too much like something else.

  • Mono Ape

    That logo says to me: cold, hard, militaristic and passionate in the sense of erotic (with the deep reds). Is that the message the atheist ‘movement’ wants a logo to convey? Don’t think so.

    Shouldn’t there be some indication of humanity, science, inclusion, progress, freedom? The Ubuntu logo is a good example – although I’m not suggesting that just gets copied with an ‘A’ smacked in the middle.

    ‘fraid this is no better than the Dawkins’ red ‘A’ with drop shadow.


  • pdsok

    The only thing I see is a bunch of people going ” Look at me, pay attention to me!!” and ” See my badge? Go on ask me what it is, go on ask me and i’ll tell you aaaall about it while I try to convert you to my way.”

    I am an atheist or whatever you wanna call it.

    Who knows it? Me and anyone who bothers to ask me if I believe in whatever.
    But I don’t feel the need to proclaim my ‘faith’, feeling or whatever I just am thats what makes me feel different from the sheep.

    If you wanna proclaim from the rooftops with ringing bells and wailing so that people come and listen to you sermonise in front of your fancy stained glass badge about believing in what is real then go ahead and do it .
    Hey you could even call it born again atheism.

    CAT >>> PIGEONS . . . . . . My work here is done.

  • samentha

    well said Pdsok, I personally think that atheistism is such a vague concept-it simply suggest the lack of belief in “god” . How can someone possibly create/accept a symbol that conveys the lack of belief in god when there is no symbol for god at all. Plus, atheists are a very diverse groups of people; we have different believes other than being atheists. It’s be extremely hard to agree on something as important as this.

  • jenni

    This is too much like a Freemason symbol, or something from a b-grade sci-fi film. I’d feel I were a cult member wearing that around my neck. I’m not too fond of the scarlet letter symbol by Dawkins either. The Atheist symbol should be more appealing to a younger audience, or to artistic Atheists. It doesn’t have to be too fancy, perhaps a more simple A would be more fitting.

  • Jon

    i personally like the circle, either empty or filled solid (for solidity in non-belief) or maybe the null symbol. i like the empty circle though, especially as a necklace like the cross and other religious symbols often are.


  • John

    well Im an atheist and Im not quite sure what to think about having a symbol for ahtheist but in a way I like the idea of being able to show our opinion

  • Jean-Luke Rivard

    everyone at my school thinks atheism is a cult that warships satan or something so me and my friend are making group that will show every one that atheism is not that bad

  • Here’s my idea for a symbol. I call it “Only sky”, named after a verse of the song “Imagine” by John Lennon:

    It’s a human figure with a star above (“above us, only sky”) and the curve of the earth below (“no hell below us”).

    Follow the link to read the rationale for the symbol.

    See ya! *o|-

  • Juan

    Wow thats really cool, but i think its gona take more than just a silver “A” to stop us. ACLU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Like an anarchist committee, an atheist symbol seems somehow oxymoronic. Let’s leave the symbology to the mystics.

  • eloy

    dang thats pimp lol i like it i want to get one were at though?

  • ted

    It could be a nice tatoo

  • atheist

    hey i like the symbol it is very cool…

  • warthog

    The fact that it does kind of look like the “Scarlet Letter” of old times seems to fit somewhat because that’s how it feels we’re treated in society; shunned, outcast, burdened with wrong doings… It’s almost like hunting season on Athiests because many of us aren’t open about it in public.

  • Just was anointed atheist brand manager by someone who is actually qualified to give me the job!

    Yes, a symbol is needed for branding.

    Unclear if this is a good enough one, as Atheism starts with an A in English, but not Chinese (for example).

    Did have a terrific brain fart today however and appreciate any reactions:

    Atheism – cool, no doubt!

  • warthog

    what is your company and what do you do?

    How about this:

    ATHEISM, Join the Evolution!“…
    With the ‘A’ as the symbol…

  • Anarchists are going to sue you.

  • PT

    How about the cross? Jesus died for all of you also – atheists included. Someday you will know. Eternity is waiting for all of us. Eternity with God or without. God bless you all. God loves you whether you know Him or not. That empty hole deep inside your heart can only be filled with God.

  • Jesus loves you, but Anarchists are a salty lot. You trod a slippery slope, ye peoples.

  • Jolly Jack

    LegoPanda wrote:

    “In Iceland atheists are called faith-free.”

    That’s the answer. Who wants or needs a symbol that requires an explanation?
    Faith-Free says it all!
    And it’s likely to stop proselytizers dead in their tracks.

  • That is interesting, faith- free… Is that a recent development in Iceland or the way the word translates? Then again, does atheism preclude “faith”? You could be a ferverent atheist or have faith of the heart or something.

  • Jolly Jack

    As far as I know, the term for “atheist” in Iceland has always been translated in that way.
    Regarding faith, well, you might have faith (or not) in a variety of things, such as in a swaying rope-bridge over a deep gorge, or in crossing a street at a busy intersection, which means there’s no proof that the bridge or intersection are safe, so you cross them at your own risk, but I think most people would see the word “faith” as relating to religion.
    The definition of “faith” in my dictionary, by the way, is:

    “Firm belief in something for which there is no proof.”

    I don’t have “faith” in my atheism, which would be tantamount to saying that I have no evidence to back up my belief, whereas there is much clear proof and evidence that the claims of ALL organized religion are unfounded, to wit, their errant holy books, such as the OT, NT, and Koran, which they say were inspired by their “god.”

  • GW-EM3:~ERJ

    i both agree and disagree with athiest having a symbol. On one hand we have something to show/say what we are and what our beliefs are but on the other hand we are turning into an organized group…which i feel will turn us into the same thing which alot of us are agianst..organized religion. But in my final decision i would love to have a symbol that shows what my beliefs are since there is a void so far in that area. Being in the military my dog tags dont say atheist, it says “norelpref” which means if something happens to me some priest of whatever denomination will pray over me. I would like to have something thats says “hey!! i am an atheist…dont try and give me my final rights”. But as for the icon above…its cool, its nice, but it just doesnt say athiest to me… hopefully one day it will.

  • In the latin atheist movement it is well accepted this symbol almost unanimously and it it is based onthe alfabete. Why not consider introducing it as an universal atheist symbol?:

  • RabidSpecies

    Come on! If your going to start a revolution you shouldn’t get all factional.

  • Nem

    Nice Zildjian Avedis logo…

  • F. Bacon

    Can’t write russian or chinese on this board, but I find it doesn’t appear that to translate Atheist would start with an “A” in either case. Guess the A is pretty anglophone.

  • Katie

    It looks just like Criss Angel’s sign….

  • Are you damn kidding me? It’s the hood ornament of the USS Enterprise…
    Try again.

  • The USS Enterprise A, I believe. Snazzy.

  • Linda

    I think that there needs to be a more unique archetype, or symbol 4 all of us Atheist, i’ve been an Atheist throughout all of my life, & not frightened,nor scarred as a child about silly things such as gods,ghost,magic,supernatural,etc. everything is linked with science and the universe, so we need something indicating just that. A strong ATHEISTIC beleif symbolic 4 what we are and where we stand. WE ARE ATHEIST. I’M AN ATHEIST.

  • Matt

    If I’m questioned about my religious persuasion, my answer is of course “atheist”. However I think I have a fundamental problem with the idea of atheist societies, symbols, conventions etc. and my reason is this:

    Well first of all let me say that I can see their function and I do think it is a good cause to fight, so I’m not against atheist organisations etc. I’m just not totally comfortable with the idea. Let me explain. I find the idea of atheist “organisations” as being too similar in style to the operation of organised religions. It seems ridiculous that there is a discussion/debate over the existence of imaginary god-friends in the first place and we shouldn’t have to waste our breathe trying to smack sense into these religious clowns. However, it’s when WE try to talk sense into these idiots, that WE appear to be trying to “convince” them of our belief, when it’s not a belief at all… It’s simply called reality. Choosing symbols for atheism, having organisations and such, just further fuels the misconception that it’s a belief system. On the other hand it’s dangerous to leave religion unchecked, so it’s a tricky balance to strike.

    Having said all that, I do feel strongly about promoting myself as a free-thinker. Free-thinking is a general mindset for rational, evidence based thought about EVERYTHING, not just religion. The point I’m trying to make is; why pick atheism specifically. Why not state a rational, logical frame of mind about ALL things where atheism is an implied, but inevitable by-product.

    Free-thought stands alone as an independent philosophy. Atheism only exists because its enemy exists.

    So getting back to the forum thread; there is already an established symbol for free thinking which is the pansy. There isn’t a stylised, agreed upon flag etc., but the best suggestion I have heard is the 5 pointed asterisk as a vague representation of the 5 petalled pansy. That is what I use.

  • Frank

    Why should atheist have the burden of wearing a symbol? Since atheism has no history, no prophet and no god and is not a religion, why carachterize ourselves with a symbol. I’m proud to believe in nothing if not science and do not think we need to lower ourselves to the rank of those who still have a primitive system of belief, thus needing symbols to feel like they belong to a group.

  • Andromeda

    Isn’t that the symbol used by Chriss Angel?

  • Metal Metal Rob

    I recently got this symbol tattooed on the back on my neck. I wanted something representing my beliefs or ..disbelief if you will, but didn’t quite know what to get. Not that I’m at all ashamed of what I stand for. I just wanted something subtle enough to still get my point across and flow well with the rest of my artwork (tattoos)without getting the word “godless” or something to that extent tattooed across my body. So does this symbol still represent atheism? Or is everybody just gonna think I’m really into Criss Angel? lol

  • Just a thought, but why do we feel a need to advertise? We’ll be having a secret handshake next…

  • Shawn Cary

    Hmm Can not find a silver pendant with this design…

  • Chuck Williams

    We believe in nothing, so way do we need a symbol to tell everyone.

  • I don’t think anyone is paying attention except various Atheists, so no harm no foul.

  • LOL..there has been a symbol for like 40 years now. It’s even used on the graves of military service people in the US…the Atheist Atom >A<

  • Mike P

    It’s up to the individual to make up his or her choice to use a symbol or not. I can create a symbol and say to me personally this means that I am an atheist. Or I can us no symbol at all, I’ll still be an atheist. Personally, I like symbols.

  • dasryt

    it’s brilliant,. it looks like the symbol of a powerful organization with destiny in it’s grasp.i will be proud and more than happy to use such a powerful but ominous symbol to represent who and what i am, an Atheist. if you think we belive in nothing then you are the reason we get a bad rep. we believe in ourselves an not some outside forces to determine our worth. we can create.

  • Quite a good symbol. Balance in design is clearly evident. Emphasis is inherent,and emphasis in combination with balance produces a striking and memorable image. Add to this its visibility, and its clear and no-frills simplicity, and we then have a symbol that suggests or emphasizes essential conceptions:

    Occam’s Razor

    A clear beginning and ending

    Quite a striking and memorable work–a metaphor, in this sense, of what a life should be.

    A brush-stroke that instantiates a figurative life-span
    Eternity, existence, eternity

  • decodeq

    It’s ‘Domain’ or 5th invader force from Magic Universe symbol

  • josh

    looks like ill have a new tattoo

  • matt

    i like it… its very stylish 😀

  • Scott

    Looks like a dorky Star Trek icon

  • Myersg

    here’s a new atheist logo i found at
    i think its neat!

  • JordanM

    I may get a tattoo of that symbol.

  • Dirkvrugteveen

    One thing is for sure there are no Atheists in hell

  • Is the symbol merely the metalic silver stylized emblem, or is the background also a part of the symbol?

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