There are theistic arguments we have all come across now and again which we know are wrong, but find it impossible to respond to. Anyone care to present them in hope of an answer?

The one that always gets me, is the fact that by using logic to back up my use of logic I'm creating a circular argument, and, similarly, by using the evidence of efficacy to support the empirical method. How would one answer that in a way a theist would understand? I can't think of a single thing.

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Check out a wiki called Iron Chariots at www.ironchariots.org

This is a counter-apologetics wiki -- it gives great, both long and short rebuttals to common theistic arguments.

The author also has a great, point-by-point refutation of two Kirk Cameron "Way of the Master" episodes -- one on atheism and one on evlution.
Thanks! That's really useful!
If you don't already, do yourself a favor and subscribe to the podcasts that the Iron Chariots folks put into the wild. They are the weekly Atheist Experience (http://www.atheist-experience.com/archive/) and bi-weekly Non-Prophets Radio (http://www.nonprophetsradio.com/audio/). You'll especially enjoy the first one because they regularly field phone calls from theists that bring logic ranging from almost-reasonable all the way to surreal-idiocy (what the hosts call "fractal stupidity"). The way the hosts handle callers' arguments/logic ... man, it's a weekly clinic on how to argue with theists. Matt D rocks.
Ah, the problem of evil. Yeah, that's a fun one. It's fun because it's a problem for them, not us, as long as they want to hold on to that all good, all knowing and all powerful god idea. Real quick, you have:

1. God is all good
2. God is all powerful
3. God is all knowing
4. Evil exists

Well not all four of those can co-exist, so you have to lose one. Most arguments either make an excuse for reducing an ability or try to come up with a clever way to remove evil from the list. How can you remove evil from the list? Well you can't, but here's how they try:
• It's part of his plan
- exists to teach us
- exists to test us
- we can't possibly know what his reason is
• We make evil through free will, not him

Totally weak. A perfect god could find a better way to accomplish his goals. As for free will, aside from admitting he can't or won't intervene, there's also the issue of omnipotence, which means he knew before he made everyone what they'd do, including Adam and Eve eating those apples. That means he created beings intentionally flawed, knowing he'd be roasting most of them for eternity for a life of "sins" he knew they'd commit. Well, that doesn't sound like he's all good, now does it?
And if humans are flawed it either means
1) god made it so for reasons unknown which can refer to
- a) it's a part of god's plan
- d) it is all our fault (because we are flawed... duh, which questions the benevolence of god)

or it could lead to
2) god is also flawed

Which is a perfectly fine description why evil would exist but speaks against the omnipotence.

Personally, I don't believe in perfectionism ;) It is merely our quest to strive for it, but if our world would be perfect there would be no reason for life imo.
Not to mention that it's difficult for a god to be both all knowing and all powerful at the same time. If all knowing means that he knows all things that ever will happen (what many theists and all Calvinists would argue), then the future is set in stone and can't be changed, therefore, he is automatically powerless to change it. If he can change the future at will, then he is not all knowing because he does not know what changes he may have to make in the future.

It's fun to watch a theist try to wrap their minds around that one.
Imagine this:

A carpet suddenly flies up into the air (sounds silly, innit?).

Answer A: Gust of wind
Answer B: Skyhooks

By using Answer A, we are led to logically ask: "what is wind, or what causes wind?"

The same way, Answer B (if used), leads to the question: "what are skyhooks?"

A theists that explains something using the word 'God' only brings any rational person to ask what 'God' is. However, most theists claim that the concept of God would always remain outside human understanding, and that God is always eternal, outside of space and time, and was never created. By even mentioning the word 'God', a theist actually makes the argument more complex, instead of answering a basic question (e.g. Why did the carpet fly into the air?).

I think it's important to let a theist understand how using 'God' as an answer is a convenient shortcut to anything that cannot be explained rationally, logically or scientifically. It is also essential to realize that 'God', as an explanation, doesn't really solve any question at all, much less as a basis for argument.
What I like to remember is that with a stubborn minded individual, you should never try to get a concession out of them in the first debate or first few debates. Make them feel heard, and don't be too critical of their reasoning skills. After they feel listened too, present a few solid objections that get them thinking, then walk away from the discussion. For example, I usually end a discussion with, "I know non-theists are always saying that the god of the OT was unjust for killing millions of infants, babies, and children, etc. And I am amazed the both OT and NT could condone something as evil as slavery, but what gets me is, Why did God kill Ananias and Sapphira in the NT. Lying? Keeping money that was God's? I just don't know if I can believe in a God like that?"

The key is not so much that you challenge them, but that you present is as your OWN challenge in belief. Then, you let reason work its magic. And I say this all as a former fundy myself. This will eat a reasonable Christian up inside. If it doesn't, then oh well. It took me way too many years to wake up, but then again I don't remember anyone ever personally challenging my beliefs until my brother did 6 months ago.

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