I have been debating with myself one specific point which essentially stems from the fallacy that a lack of evidence is not an evidence of lack. (Note that this a purely a thought experiment, not a claim, and that, on balance, the whole set of arguments against theism outweigh one possible philosophical issue which only relates to intellectual decency.)

Essentially, the fact that there is a lack of evidence to support theistic views does not mean that it's evidence of a lack of God. Imagine God to be something similar to our 21st century minds and technology like the continent of America was to 15th century Europe.

(Side note: To avoid potential nitpicking about this specific premise, I know that America was discovered and rediscovered, but the "official" discovery was an accident as the goal of the expedition was to find India. That some in the 15th century Europe might even have been aware that America existed is a bit irrelevant as society as a whole certainly did not believe it was there, and it's the mindset of those who did not believe which is interesting.)

Now, try to enter this mindset and think that God is in a similar situation. Just like the 15th century mindset and technology could not comprehend the continent of America, the mindsets and technology today is not capable of providing the evidence required to detect or understand a divinity.

Therefore, a God may exist (but it doesn't matter).



Edit: The title was erroneous in it's use of the word "for". This is not an argument for theisim, it's an argument not against theism. Thanks to Kasu for this insight.


Views: 212

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I'm getting totally lost on this concept these days.  For the most part I have to ask what even constitutes a god?  If someone wants to assert nothing more than a conscious prime mover then I have to ask why they consider that thing to be a god?  Honestly, I just can't consider notion of a god that hasn't demanded worship and given me good reason to think that it is worthy of worship.


If a really advanced alien showed up here and proved it had the ability to alter my DNA such that I could live forever, and further offered to fly me around the universe for a billion years checking things out, and further proved to me that it could keep me remarkably well entertained and happy for that billion years - I would be glad to sing songs about how wonderful he was if that would influence him to pick me for such an adventure, but I still would not think of him as a 'god'.


The only thing that would constitute a god to me is an entity that offered some guide to prayer that would significantly improve my life - and possibly lead to an afterlife, although I'm not adamant about that.  No such thing exists - I know that for an absolute fact because I've tried.  For me it's case closed.

I will go so far as to say 'something' might exist that we can't currently test for, and actually of that I am certain.  I am equally certain, however that that thing is not a god.  Plenty of people might want to claim I can't know if I don't even know what it is but I do know what a god is and I do know that it doesn't exist.  I also know that it is not an invisible pink unicorn because I know what that is and invisible and pink are mutually exclusive.  All this watered down 'absentee clockmaker' sort of rationalization of the god-concept succeeds in nothing more than proving that the bare minimum rationally definable god is no god at all.
It all ends up as a "The God of the Gaps" when attempting to explain something supernatural by natural means. If religious people had not continually attempted to do just that, we would not need these types of debates. The natural world belongs to science, the supernatural to religion. When something considered to be supernatural is explained by natural means, it is no longer supernatural and thus not within the purvey of religion to hold opinions about. 

In doing so, however, I assert that we will end up with something that is NOT a god by any sense of the word as it was initially coined.  At one time science postulated a lumeniferious aether, a medium for the motion of light.  It has been proven that this lumeniferious aether does not exist, yet the concept of an aether was adapted to other ideas.  It could be that one of those ideas turns out to be true, but those idea will NOT be the lumeniferous aether initially proposed and will NOT be the medium for the motion of light.


In point of fact, the only rational definitions of god are, by definition, rational.  The only definitions that lead to the necessity of 'worship' are irrational onces and as such are self-refuting.

Wow- I'm glad you're still with us. 

I enjoy reading your posts.

Heather, I don't see my previous reply-


"Wow, I'm glad you're still with us"


I'm glad to be here and glad to be still be welcome. :D
I think this can be answered best with dawkin's "teapot" argument. My proxy for this argument = that there could be invisible unicorns that have sex with fairys producing "fairycorns", which are responsible for global warming due to their gratuitous amount of flatulence (which is comprised mostly of CO2 btws). Although it is highly unlikely fairycorns exist, it may be possible that we just dont have the technology or mental capacity to observe them yet.
Personally, I choose to believe in fairycorns rather than accept responsibility for my own actions because its easier :D
Russell's Teapot not Dawkins'

I don't think this would work that well as an argument for theism (I like your point though).

If we think about our evidence for god as the the continent of America to 15th century Europe, then it would only require further scientific/technological advancement to find the answer (or at least as close as we can get to one).

This doesn't work well with theists because they (or at least many) hate science and try to fluff it with religious bull$hit in schools.

If they really want to work with this way of thinking and prove that there really is a god, then many would have to stop being jerks and promote the learning of science in schools and other places. Unfortunately, christianity is all about arrogance and knowing the answers immediately, so I doubt any christian would care for this mindset.

I'm not sure I have good answer for you. This is the way I see it. Doug Stanhope has a great bit about if you have never heard of Christianity and you found the Bible in an old book store and read it. Would you buy up the whole Christianity religion? Most likely not. So if no one had ever heard of God or religion and one day someone told you that there was a being that they couldn't prove to you was there (insert the rest of your favorite God argument). Could you or would you believe it?

This by the way is the same reason that I HATE it when someone says that no matter where they were born they would be a Christian.

One mustn't treat everything one can possibly imagine as equal to the real until it can be, in fact, demonstrated to be equal to the real. There is much each of us can imagine, but very little of what we imagine can be reasonably demonstrated directly or indirectly to be real. If one reacts in the same way to what is only imagined as one does to what is genuinely real, we call it madness. That is what it is. A healthy mind is that which can distinguish one from the other and act accordingly. I work at night. I hear many strange noises in the attic and underneath the house or elsewhere. If I treated all of it as though it were gremlins or trolls up to mischief, I could not work and, in fact, I could not live in my home. If I firmly believe there to be gremlins or trolls and want others to agree, it is reasonable to expect I would present some justification to do so OR they would have to know where to seek it for themselves. If it isn't presented or doesn't present itself, if it doesn't stand up to rational and reasonable examination, they will rightly think me mad or, in any event, dismiss the notion my home has been invaded by gremlins or trolls ... or both. The lack of evidence means they dismiss the claim as a meaningless notion. So it is, thus far, with the claim "god. The situation may or may not change in the future. In the present, there is no good warrant to treat "god" as anything more than fantasy. Is there reason to treat it as equal to "real", "true" or "fact"? Show it. A mere "feeling" isn't enough.


© 2020   Created by Rebel.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service