CADRE Comments

A Rational Look at Christianity; Basing Reason in Truth

So here's an argument based upon arguments atheists make a lot.

(1) Empirical science has produced knowledge, technology, medicine, etc., etc. It's awesome.
(2) Abstract philosophy has produced nothing at all; it appears to be mere navel gazing.
(3) Therefore, we should base all of our beliefs on empirical science, not abstract philosophy.
(4) The arguments for God are abstract philosophy of exactly the kind that has proven so worthless.
(5) Therefore, we should reject all of the arguments for God.

To me, this seems to be a powerful argument for non belief. It doesn't prove that there's no God, but it does provide a potential reason not to believe in God, which is the same thing for all practical purposes.

The theist has two ways out, maybe. The first would be to muddy the distinction between philosophy and science. I think that this is probably doable to some extent, but I'm not sure how doable it actually is. The second would be to attack (4), and argue that some of the arguments for God are different from medieval philosophy in significant respects. Again, I'm not sure how doable this is.

Anyway, I'd like to hear what people have to say about this argument. I haven't seen anyone formulate it explicitly before.

So here's an argument.

(1) Empirical science has produced knowledge, technology, medicine, etc., etc. It's awesome.


* That is not a reason to assume that it's the only form of knowledge (which he does assume in the argument).

*Doesn't make it a competitor with religion.

* he's essentially arguing truth is indicated by it working. working = truth. Religious belief works too to produce the things it's supposed to produce.

(2) Abstract philosophy has produced nothing at all; it appears to be mere navel gazing.

bull honky do do that is BS!

*philosophy has produced many things including empirical scinece!

* you can't interpret data in the context of a hypothesis without philosophical thinking.

*"nature" is a philosophical construct and all the more so is "naturalism" You can't have an ideological framework such as naturalism without philosophical thinking.

* Religious belief does not reduce to just philosophy. Trashing philosophy is not a defeat for God argument nor is it a defeat for belief in God.


(3) Therefore, we should base all of our beliefs on empirical science, not abstract philosophy.

*that would not follow even if we granted the premises.

science works
philosophy doesn't do anything
therefore science is the only way to think

that does not follow. There can be other ways to think even if they are not philosophical.

*Of cousre the truth is it's not the case because you can't think scientifically without thinking philosophically.





(4) The arguments for God are abstract philosophy of exactly the kind that has proven so worthless.

*not necessary. arguments from experience are not abstract philosophy.

*God pod argument is not abstract philosophy

*reverse quantum is no more abstract philosophy than QM theory is.

* nor are God arguments the only basis for belief in God. Trashing philosophy does absolutely nothing to negate the warrant for belief.

*You can't have a coherent understanding of naturalism or it's implications without abstract philosophy. Atheism is just as dependent.


(5) Therefore, we should reject all of the arguments for God.

since every premise above is disproved so is this

4 comments:

At the risk of being predicable, I'll stay in character here: Jesus is why I believe in God. Jesus is not abstract.

Were you looking for a way to open the conversation to belief in God, or to acknowledgment of the abstract? I guess it all depends on which angle you're going for.

For the record I don't think "abstract philosophy" has been well-defined; it seems like a "no true Scotsman" style argument to call "in" what they want and "out" what you want. There's nothing more practical than a good solid theory. Taking a few things that you think of as philosophy that are useful, and watching (as soon as you prove it useful) that they'll put it on the other side of the dividing line -- a few exercises like that should make the point.

Take care & God bless
Anne / WF

I think you have a good point there. my aim was to undermine the fortress of facts mentality on carm. The idea that we have this big moutian of facts that's all proved by science you don't' have a single fact that proves God.

My overall philosophical and theological modus oporandi is to assume that the proving of the existence of god is a mistaken enterprise to begin with. The fact that we don't have facts that confirm God's existence is in line with my theology it doesn't invalidate it.

the fortress of facts says "we can only believe facts, and we have a mountain of facts." SO I undermine it by showing they self selected, and of course they ignore another fortress of facts that stands against them. The center piece of that fortress is the non-reductive concept of God. God is beyond our understanding, we can't reduce God to an empirical object.

I know this might not be the right forum for this question, but I would like to know how to respond to a standard line against the resurrection. Basically, someone says there is more evidence of, say, UFO's than for Jesus' Resurrection, and then provide things like eyewitness stories, visions etc. The point they try to make is this: anything that you might say to dismiss those stories can just as easily be used against the resurrection.

Here's a thread to display that:
http://jameshannam.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=824

So, is there any normal argument for the uniqueness of the resurrection, that would not involve special pleading? I know that Antony Flew said in one interview (perhaps when he was still an atheist) that while he did not believe it himself, he agreed that the resurrection of Jesus is the most well-attested miracle claim.

1) Empirical science created the nuclear bomb, mustard gas, hydrogenated oils, artificial sweetners, anthrax, Marxism, internt porn, LSD, meth... etc. It is cruel and evil

2) Abstract philiosophy is a product of our high evolutionary status as intellectual beings. It produces a magnified and intensified intellect.

3) Therefore, we should base our beliefs on our abstract undertsanding on what our minds are presented with in the empirical world.

4) The arguments for God are abstract philosophy of exactly the kind that has proven to be so priceless and at the core of human being.

5) Therefore, we should welcome all arguments for God.

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