So what would it take to convince you there was a god?
This subject has come up before, and while not proof of an omnipotent deity, I offer the following:
If you find the King James Bible encoded in some naturally occurring organism's unused DNA, that would be a pretty good argument.
You would need to show it's extremely unlikely that a code could be found such that natural DNA would decode to the KJ Bible, unless it were intentionally put there.
It's very unlikely that having the KJ Bible encoded in a creature's DNA would be an evolutionary advantage. So I would tend to think, something intelligent had to put it there.
This wouldn't be proof of God - but rather of powerful intervention by an intelligence that we don't know anything of.
It's also possible to imagine a creature that would be extremely unlikely to have evolved by natural selection.
Creationists are always coming up with things they think are examples of this, but aren't really.
Perhaps, a fluorescent bulb like what you can buy at the hardware store, would be an example. With some weird phosphor that has no other known use. Inside a glass shell with vacuum, supplied with electric power.
Or a nuclear-powered creature.
Maybe that would mean the earth was passing through a massive cloud of hallucinatory gas :)
Oh, some people are just too cynical.
I recently enjoyed Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar...: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes. On the virtue of searching for natural, parsimonious explanations for supposed miracles, the authors quote this joke:
One day Bill complained to his friend that his elbow really hurt. His friend suggested that he visit a swami who lived in a nearby cave. "Simply leave a sample of urine outside his cave, and he will meditate on it, miraculously diagnose your problem, and tell you what you can do about it. It only costs $10."
Bill figured he had little to lose, so he filled a jar with urine and left it outside the cave with a $10 bill. The next day when he came back, there was a note waiting for him that said "You have tennis elbow. Soak your arm in warm water. Avoid heavy lifting, it will be better in 2 weeks."
Later that evening, Bill started to think that the swami's "miracle" was a put-up job by his friend, who could have written the note and left it outside the cave himself. So Bill decided to get back at his friend. He mixed together some tap water, a yard sample from his dog, and urine samples from his wife and son. To top it off, he included another bodily fluid of his own, and left the concoction outside the cave with $10. He the called his friend and told him that he was having some other health problems and that he had left another sample for the swami.
The next day he returned to the cave and found another note that said "Your tap water is too hard. Get a water softener. Your dog has worms. Get him vitamins. You son is hooked on cocaine. Get him into rehab. Your wife is pregnant with twin girls. They aren't yours. Get a lawyer. And if you don't stop playing with yourself, your tennis elbow will never get any better."
That's a great joke. Especially when you realize just how much he had to have been playing with himself, to cause a sore elbow :)
He didn't get that tennis elbow from playing tennis
What would convince you that there's a supernatural being that isn't a fantasy?
Here's a thought that Steve Shives came up with in one of his videos which impressed me:
Why should WE worry about what kind of proof we would need to be convinced of the existence of a god. If god is all that and a bag of chips, HE KNOWS what it would take to convince us ... and yet he doesn't.
Anyone want to guess as to why?
Why should WE worry about what kind of proof we would need to be convinced of the existence of a god.
I was just being playful. Peter Boghossian asked Richard Dawkins that question during a discussion. Peter Boghossian asks religious people this question in the opposite direction: what it would take to prove your faith wrong? So in the spirit of open-mindedness and fairness, he discussed what it would take to show an atheist that God does exist.
But I asked it it because it could be an imagination-stimulating question - provoking baroque scenarios :)
If any real evidence of a god existed, I wouldn't be an atheist. The philosophy of creationism originated with the misunderstanding of the evolution of bacteria in a critique of Darwinism called "irreducible complexity". The foundation of Intelligent Design has been debunked: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn13663-evolution-myths-the-bac...