who does the responsibility of proof fall to?

one big topic that comes up in theist vs atheist debates is who does the responsibility of proof fall to?

does it fall to the creationists to prove that god DOES exist?


does it fall upon those who do believe that god does NOT exist?

AND, can you give your reason(s) why?

I personally think that it is the creationists responsibility to prove god's existance BECAUSE: throughout the entire history of science, science has only ever proven the existance of things, science has NEVER proven that something DOES NOT exhist. eg. earth, air, fire and water were proven not to be elements, because of the discovery of the EXISTANCE of the true elements (hydrogen, carbon etc), but neither earth, air, fire or water were proven not to exist by this discovery, they were simply proven not to be fundamental elements. the EXISTANCE of the atom was proven, and that discovery did not prove the NON-EXISTANCE of anything. the EXISTANCE of the forces of Gravity, Electromagnetism, Strong and Weak nuclear forces have all been proven, but that too has not proven the NON-EXISTANCE of anything. same goes for the existance of micro-organisms, dinosaurs, black holes, other stars, planets, galaxies, protons, electrons, electrons, neutrons, matter, antimatter, energy etc (the list of things that exhist is very VERY long). not once has science ever proven that something does NOT exhist, so why should it start now? why is there no evidence for the non-existance of non-existant things? because non-exhistant things have non-existant evidence for their non-existance, therefore you do not need to provide evidence that proves that something does not exhist, but if you claim that something DOES exhist, you must provide the proof or evidence that it exhists.

please i encourage anyone to comment if they can think of an instance where something has been proven not to exist, unlike the vast majority of creationists, I am open to new knowledge and new information and to changing my personal views and beliefs and to being proven wrong, i am always looking to review and refine my definitions and explanations of my knowledge and beliefs.

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Comment by Jason Woolsey on April 28, 2013 at 5:37am

I wish there was a like or thumbs up button so I could just agree with someone instead of a whole new post.  Anyway, Ray has the right of it...the burden of proof lies with the one making the claim.  

That combined with the fact that you cannot prove a negative puts the Burden of Proof in the religious persons hands most of the time.

I have always thought of it like a castle siege...if you are hanging out in your castle and someone brings their Army and attacks (Makes a claim) then you should probably let them tire themselves out trying to ram the castle gate (providing the proof).  If they show up and demand that you come outside and face them well, that is just crazy talk...it is up to them at that point to show you your weak argument.

Comment by Lance Angus Miles on April 28, 2013 at 7:14am

very true Jason, another way i like to look at is to say that in science, until something has been proven to exist, we assume that it doesn't.

Comment by Unseen on April 28, 2013 at 10:35am

It's wrong to say that you can't prove a negative. It simply depends upon the assertion. Many negatives cannot be proven, but if I say there's an elephant in my backpack, that's impossible, so the negative proves itself. If I say there's no elephant in my kitchen, the proof comes by simply looking. The problem with proving God doesn't exist starts with the impossibility of defining what proof of the existence of God might consist of. Such a proof would have to be like a scientific experiment and its result, reproducible in other words. If a scientist says, I did that and got this result, it's meaningless unless I can do what s/he did and get the same result, every time. Then you have formal proofs, as in mathematics (and cosmology, which takes some facts and measurements to start with and from there uses math and logic since generally experiments are not possible).

Comment by Lance Angus Miles on April 28, 2013 at 12:04pm

trust me in saying that i took no pleasure in conceding that argument as a valid point, in the interest of fairness in a debate, one must admit when the opposition has a valid argument, but Alan helped me understand a way in which it can be considered a non-valid point. i also find it ironic that just as i recieved the notification of your post, i was in the middle of watching a video of Neil Degrasse Tyson talking about the observable universe and just got to the part where he was talking about the multiverse and that we just happen to live in a universe where the constants and laws of physics allow for the existance of life


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