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Re: Psalm 14:1 on another level -- *some* atheists are fools!

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  • w_w_c_l
    Don t write off Psalm 14:1 completely! ... This is a valid modus tollens argument: P1: If A , then B . P2: not- B . C: Then not- A . In this case: P1: If God
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 3, 2008
      Don't write off Psalm 14:1 completely!

      --- In ChristianityVSOtherWorldViewsAndReligions@yahoogroups.com,
      diana wilson <dwilsontx@> wrote:
      >
      > IF GOD EXISTS...THERE WOULD BE PROOF OF A GOD...
      > THERE IS NONE...END OF STORY
      > DIANA

      This is a valid modus tollens argument:

      P1: If 'A', then 'B'.
      P2: not-'B'.

      C: Then not-'A'.

      In this case:

      P1: If God exists, then there would be proof.
      P2: There is no proof.

      C: Therefore, there is no God.


      While the argument is *valid*, it remains Diana's
      responsibility to prove the argument is *sound* --
      that is, that both of her premises are "true".

      She has made two positive claims here:

      1) That if God exists, there will be proof of that.
      2) There is no proof.


      Regarding the first claim, I think that Diana will have
      a very hard time showing the statement is true -- there
      are probably a lot of things that exist for which we have
      neither proof nor even any idea of their existence.

      Regarding the second claim, it will be very difficult
      for Diana to unilaterally define what constitutes
      "proof".


      The idea that the "burden of proof" falls exclusively
      on the believer is incorrect -- the burden of proof
      falls on WHOEVER makes a truth claim, such as these
      two statements by Diana.

      It is also not quite correct to assume that the "default
      position" is that there is no God. If you are a member
      of a society that overwhelmingly accepts the existence
      of God, and you yourself have no faith, the default
      position, for you, is to figure out for yourself why it
      is that you are making the positive assertion, whether
      explicitly expressed or not, that the majority of the
      society is wrong -- and then you should be able to
      offer a rational argument to that end.

      There is also the problem of explaining what appears to
      be the biological reality that humans are "hard-wired"
      for faith, as they say. If that is indeed the case, then
      those who reject faith are suppressing one of their
      most "natural" inclinations, which could hardly be viewed
      as conducive to mental and emotional stability.


      As far as this idea of "multiverses" goes, Diana seems
      to think that because something can be shown to be a
      mathematical possibility, then it is automatically a
      reality, which is analogous to saying that because an
      engineer can design a bridge that will work, the bridge
      must exist. The truth is that the multiverse is just
      one of many possibilities, and was largely conceived as
      an explanation for quantum mechanics -- but there is no
      real evidence, according to some physicists, that any
      such exotic explanation is needed. It may simply be
      that everything "exists" right here in this Universe,
      but that we don't really know what "matter" is.

      For those who are interested, here is a paper:

      Issues in the Philosophy of Cosmology
      George F R Ellis. 3/30/06
      (http://www.mth.uct.ac.za/~ellis/enc2.pdf)

      Ellis is a theist and a world-class cosmologist, who has
      proposed a model of the Universe that he says "works
      almost as well as the real one". Even if you don't
      have the math (as I don't) to understand all the formulae
      in this paper, it is written in a way that you can skip
      over the equations and get the gist of what he is saying.

      He points out that even if the multiverse did exist, we
      could never hope to have any proof of that, since another
      universe *by definition* could have no causal connection
      to this one -- that is, there can be no exchange of
      information between them -- no light, no gravity, no
      mathematics, no nothing.

      What I am getting at is that there is thus more real-world
      "proof" of the existence of God than there is for any
      hypothetical multiverses.



      Rick Hartzog
      Worldwide Church of Latitudinarianism
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