A call to live up to our inner-Spock




Everyone loves Mr. Spock - except those people who mistake him with Dr. Spock, the baby doc, whose advice to mothers in the 50s ruined a generation (but that's another story for another day). No, Mr. Spock is not Dr. Spock. Mr. Spock (or Commander Spock) is that lovable, living, breathing computer-of-a-man who has dedicated his life to logic and facts. For those of us who grew up watching Mr. Spock - which pretty much includes everyone 60 years of age or younger - he represented something to which all could aspire; a person who values logic above emotion. And of course, whenever I do apologetics on the Internet, both sides try to claim the mantle of Mr. Spock. Everyone wants to claim that they are the one being logical while the opponent is being illogical.

Because I already know based upon the comments that twist what I have written in previous posts that someone is going to claim that "BK hates logic" or some other similar nonsense, let me be clear: there is nothing wrong with trying to be logical. It's crucially important that we avoid using logical fallacies when arguing - both formal and informal. In fact, failure to follow the rules of logic will result in nonsensical arguments. Consider, for example, the following syllogism:

Syllogism 1:
Premise 1: All atheists are fools,
Premise 2: Richard Dawkins is an atheist,
Conclusion: Therefore, Richard Dawkins is not a fool.

If Syllogism 1 causes your blood pressure to rise, you are probably an atheist. If it causes you to chuckle, you are probably a theist. But regardless if the syllogism makes you angry or amused, it is not the emotional response that determines if the syllogism is valid. Rather, it is the logical form. Effectively, this syllogism is in the form of:

Syllogism 2:
Premise 1:All X are Y,
Premise 2: Z in an X,
Conclusion: Therefore, Z is not Y.

But wait, that syllogism doesn't make sense, does it? If Z is an X, and all X are Y, then it must be the case that Z is Y. My syllogism concludes that Z is not Y. So, obviously the syllogism fails as written. In other words, it's form is not valid. Instead, it should conclude that Richard Dawkins is a fool.

Syllogism 3:
Premise 1:All atheists are fools,
Premise 2: Richard Dawkins is an atheist,
Conclusion: Therefore, Richard Dawkins is a fool.

That, then, is a valid logical argument.

But wait, one might ask, what about the premises? What if they aren't true? After all, I am certain a large number of readers would disagree that all atheists are fools even if Richard Dawkins is a fool. Well, the truth of the premises goes to the "soundness" of the argument. The soundness of the argument isn't based on it's logical form, but on the truth of its premises. There are always two questions that need to be asked in any argument: (1) is the form logically valid, and (2) are the premises true? If the answer to both is affirmative, then the argument becomes sound.

I feel confident that we can all agree that logic is important in making arguments. If we make an argument using a flawed logical form, i.e., the formal logic is flawed, we ought to be called out and corrected. The problem is when someone makes the "you're argument is illogical" claim, it is very rare that they are pointing out that an argument is not valid, i.e., the formal logic does not lead to the conclusion because it is flawed (like Syllogism 1 and Syllogism 2, above). So, most of the time, when someone tries to bring out their inner-Spock and claim the argument high-ground by claiming that something is illogical, what they almost always really mean is: (1) one or more of the premises are untrue, or (2) the argument uses an informal logical fallacy. I will not deal with the second problem here (I believe posts should be short), but I do want to make one point about the first.

I am certain that there are very few people making arguments about God, Christianity or the Bible who do not believe that their premises are true. (I expect there are "fake arguments" just like there is "fake news", but I think that very few people make an argument knowing or believing that their premises are false. That would be deceitful, and while there are certainly some people who are being deceitful, I choose to give the benefit of the doubt until proven otherwise.) But often the problem isn't that the premises aren't true. Instead, especially when arguing about the truth of the premises in the field of religion, the biggest problem is often a lack of common language. In other words, we are using different definitions or come from different world-views which those unfamiliar with the language's use in particular cultures mistakenly call "illogical."

As an example, consider Syllogism 3, above. My first premises is pretty controversial: All atheists are fools. Atheists and others may read that premises as meaning that all atheists are unintelligent, half-witted, or lacking in good sense. They justifiably believe that's what the syllogism means because those are all perfectly legitimate definitions or synonyms of "foolish." But that may not be what I meant at all. I may simply using the term consistent with the Biblical statement that "The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God.'" (Psalm 14:1) In other words, my definition of a fool may simply be "a person who has said in their heart that there is no God." If that is true, then let's substitute what I may have meant into Syllogism 3:

Syllogism 4:
Premise 1:All atheists are people who have said in their heart that there is no God,
Premise 2:Richard Dawkins is an atheist,
Conclusion:Therefore, Richard Dawkins is a person who has said in his heart that there is no God.

Is Syllogism 4 valid? Yes, the form of the argument has no flaws. Are the premises true? Yes, I would doubt that anyone would argue that the premises of Syllogism 4 are false. Is the argument sound? Yes, the form is valid and the premises are true. Is Syllogism 4 any different than Syllogism 3 when the terms are defined? No, they are the same argument - both are equally sound. Yet, I expect that people will still object to Syllogism 3. But understand that the reason you are objecting is due to the connotation that the word "fool" carries, but it is not because it is illogical. If you object that Syllogism 3 is illogical after having the definition of the term "fool" given, then you are simply allowing emotion to overtake your logic and you would not be living up to the high calling of Mr. Spock to be logical.

The call that someone is not being logical is way overused in Internet debate. I would like to encourage everyone - theists and atheists alike - to try to be more gracious and give people the benefit of the doubt that they are logical, thinking beings.


======

Addendum 2/16/2017 - After posting this, it occurred to me how it could be turned into something I did not say. So, let me add an additional thought. This post does not represent a call to come up with independent definitions of words. I could see something like this occurring:

Person 1: "All Christians are jerks" (or something worse).
Person 2: "Well, that's kinda' offensive."
Person 1: "Well, I'm defining 'jerk" (or the even more offensive term) as a really nice person, so you have no right to be offended."

I am not using this to call for this type of banter. What I am doing here is simply suggesting that in reviewing arguments for logic, we stick to logic. And when we review things for logic, we don't call things logical fallacies that are not logical fallacies. Talk that is wrong is wrong regardless of its logical component. It is not an invitation to start re-defining words.

Comments

im-skeptical said…
The call that someone is not being logical is way overused in Internet debate.

Should I point out the place in your article that uses invalid logic?
Anonymous said…
Sure.
im-skeptical said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
im-skeptical said…
Ok. Since you asked, BK states: The soundness of the argument isn't based on it's logical form, but on the truth of its premises.

It isn't stated as a syllogism, but you can sort of follow the line of thinking:
A. Validity is based on the form of the logic.
B. An argument can be valid and still not have true premises.
C. Therefore, validity is not based on the truth of the premises. (this is correct)

D. Soundness is based on the truth of the premises.
E. (unstated assumption) An argument can be sound and still not have valid logical form (this is not correct, but assumed as a parallel to B.)
F. Therefore, soundness is not based on it's logical form.

The problem is that while validity is based ONLY on the form of the logic, soundness is based on BOTH the form of the logic and the truth of the premises. BK made the logical leap that since statement B is true, then it would also be correct to assume statement E. But that is a non sequitur, since both B and E are dependent on the definitions of validity and soundness, which do not have parallel forms.
BK said…
No, your unstated assumption is wrong. What I was saying is:

Premise 1: Validity is not based on the truth of the premises.
Premise 2: Soundness is based on the truth of the premises.
Conclusion: Therefore, you can have an argument that is valid but is not sound if the premises are untrue.

I did not say, and do not think, that an argument can be sound without both a logically correct form and true premises. So, you read into what I wrote (as you note when you say that your unstated premises is assumed as a parallel to B. You assumption is not correct.
im-skeptical said…
Sorry. I didn't want to make a big deal of it, but you DID say

The soundness of the argument isn't based on it's logical form, but on the truth of its premises.

Which is not correct.
im-skeptical said…
At any rate, I substantially agree with what you say in this article. That said, we can't always assume that the argument is logically valid.

For example, take Joe's "Argument from God Correlate":
(1) Real effects come from real causes
(2) If effects are real chances are the cause is real
(3) the effects of mystical experience are real
(4) Therefore, the cause of mystical experience is real.
(5) the content of mystical experience is about the divine
(6) Since the content of ME is divine the cause must be the divine
(7) Since the cause is real and it is divine then the divine must be real.
(8) Therefore belief in the divine is warranted by ME


Notice as he moves from statement 5 to 6 to 7, he transforms an experience (perceived to be) ABOUT the "divine" to an experience that IS divine. This is not due to any false premise. It is a logically invalid argument.
BK said…
im-skeptical, you are correct. As I said it in that single sentence, you could draw that conclusion. What that sentence should probably read is: "The soundness of the argument isn't based solely on it's logical form, but on the truth of its premises." Since I also said, "There are always two questions that need to be asked in any argument: (1) is the form logically valid, and (2) are the premises true? If the answer to both is affirmative, then the argument becomes sound," I think that I wasn't too confusing. Thanks for allowing me to clarify.

As far as Joe's ME argument, I prefer to leave it to Joe to defend his own arguments since he has thought about them a great deal more than I do. And I do believe what you say has some basis. But I believe that the argument (I assume that you are accurately quoting Joe) isn't subject to the objection you have written. I say that because I would word the argument differently to get to the point, and the it seems to me that my rephrasing would remove the objection without removing the underlying point. I would begin with the unobjectionable part (steps 1-4):

(1) Real effects come from real causes
(2) If effects are real then the cause is real
(3) The effects of mystical experience are real
(4) Therefore, the cause of mystical experience is real.

(I removed "chances are" from the 2nd step because I don't believe we need to clarify it that way. Maybe there is a reason he did so, but that's why I prefer Joe to contend for his own arguments.) Through these first four steps, there is no question about the validity of the argument. (I think that the first three premises are also true, so the argument is sound - but that's another argument for another day.)

So, what would clarify steps 5 through 7 that would possibly overcome your objection? I believe it would be to add new steps 4a and 4b which would serve to clarify steps 5 through 8:

(4a) Effects are of the same nature as their cause(s).
(4b) The content of an experience is part of the effect of the experience.
(5) The content of mystical experience (hence, the effect, per 4b) is about the divine
(6) Since the content (hence, the effect) of mystical experience is divine the cause must be the divine
(7) Since the cause is real and it is divine then the divine must be real.
(8) Therefore belief in the divine is warranted by ME

Now, I don't know if this is what Joe was intending. I also know that I am, in part, re-writing the syllogism, but since I think I understand where Joe was going, I think that what I am writing is within the bounds of what he was trying to say. I leave it to him to either reject or accept my changes for reasons that I may not know because I have never truly considered this argument at this level. If you don't agree with what I said, take it up with him since he knows his own arguments better than I.
im-skeptical said…
I agree that your formulation introduces a premise that would make the argument valid. But of course, I would argue that that premise is not true. Consider an experience about the divine that is caused by drugs or by electromagnetic stimulation (as in the "God-hat"). The effect is quite unrelated to the cause. So I would reject that premise.
BK said…
I agree that your formulation introduces a premise that would make the argument valid. But of course, I would argue that that premise is not true.

Okay. That's alright. I have added the premises I think are needed to make the argument valid. I would argue that they are hidden premises that make the argument complete and they are consistent with what Joe is trying to argue, but I don't know if Joe would agree. Since this is his argument, I will let him take up the task. Whether they are true (hence, whether the argument is sound) is where I think the real battle lies with this syllogism - not the validity of its form.
Joe Hinman said…
Since you asked, BK states: The soundness of the argument isn't based on it's logical form, but on the truth of its premises.

Soundness is the validity of the argument plus the truth of the presses; if the argument is valid and all premises are true it is sound, that does not mean you get to declare it unsound because you disagree with it.
Joe Hinman said…
Bill's comments om behalf of my arguments are good,I have nog reproduced the form of the argument in the book because cant get to the book,i can't walk, don;t have my books here, can't get up and go get it, I could have someone bring it tome but yiu go be in nursing home see how that works. We live by that assumption every day,

But the cause is real but what is it? by "real" I mean external so more than just brain fart. Because that would not produce consistent long term positive effects,

now what kind of genius would assume that an external cause that reveals the meaning of life and that meaning is bound up with the divine but the reversal would not be devise or connected to it? that;'stupid,that is absolutely embedded in the experience.The noetic aspects of the experience are always about God and meaning of life qnd why we are hre and so on.

the sense of the numinous inherently is about a presence of holiness and divine, why woukd that be ? it matches up with the faqct itworiks for the psitive every time, why>



Joe Hinman said…
do you notice how Skepie is always on about y studies and books and arguments? he;s got to make everything degenerate into a harangue about that, he so afraid of it.
Joe Hinman said…
the mystical experiences are intrinsically positive. There are no studies that show negative effects. The experience would produce negative effects if it was merely the result of brain chemistry.

that that can be seen as three different arguments

(1) real effects need real causes

(2) the content is consistently about the divine, brain chemistry can choose content

(3) consistent lack of negative effects argues against purely naturalistic origin

they all work together to prodce a big argument
im-skeptical said…
For the record, Joe, I have no problem with the first four statements of the argument. I absolutely agree that the cause of any mental event is real. The question then becomes: What is the cause?

The content is NOT consistently about the divine, as I have pointed out to you, and even some of the papers YOU CITED make that point clear. If you want to claim some kind of scientific process in your work, then you can't afford to ignore relevant facts like that. Science has to account for ALL the evidence, not just the ones you choose.

Furthermore, it is still a leap of logic to say that because these experiences are correlated with positive outcomes, they must be caused by God. You haven't shown that causal link. As you said recently, you would have to systematically identify all other possible causes, and eliminate them, in order to arrive at the conclusion that God did it. For example, maybe it's just BELIEF in God that causes people to behave differently and produces these outcomes. Or maybe the psychological state of a person is the CAUSE of both the ME and the positive behavior. I don't think you have examined possibilities like these in any depth. In fact, it would require more scientific studies that are not included in your 200.

statement (1) - agree. All effects have real causes.
statement (2) - disagree. Not all peak experiences are about the divine.
statement (3) - disagree. Correlation does nor mean consistent. People can have a ME and still have something bad happen to them. Furthermore, there are natural things that consistently produce positive results. Lack of negative effects does NOT argue against a natural cause.
Joe Hinman said…
For the record, Joe, I have no problem with the first four statements of the argument. I absolutely agree that the cause of any mental event is real. The question then becomes: What is the cause?

that's what I have pointed out every time.Then I give you reasons to think it must be God, ie the 8 tie breakers, you never answer them.

The content is NOT consistently about the divine, as I have pointed out to you, and even some of the papers YOU CITED make that point clear. If you want to claim some kind of scientific process in your work, then you can't afford to ignore relevant facts like that. Science has to account for ALL the evidence, not just the ones you choose.


Yes the content is consistently about God.In a very small percentage like 10%
they refuse to call it God.Those are all atheists to begin with. There are no examples of believers in God having it then saying I saw it was not God. If you read the book You would know that I deal with those atheist experiences.

(1) the m scale research show the experiences are still the same when we remove doctrine and divine names, even the atheists.The way they relate to the experience is the same.

(3) atheists say say experience a void rather than presence ,But we see Vedanta also claims they experience a void and they believe in God..So the void is not necessarily indcative of no God.



2/20/2017 08:39:00 AM Delete
Joe Hinman said…
Furthermore, it is still a leap of logic to say that because these experiences are correlated with positive outcomes, they must be caused by God.

No it's not it makes perfect sense. The kind of positive experience is constant with the clams of religion and many embody religious belief such as presence of love, and giving meaning so on,



You haven't shown that causal link. As you said recently, you would have to systematically identify all other possible causes, and eliminate them, in order to arrive at the conclusion that God did it.

YesI did that, That;s what the tie breakers do. We have a tie between "God" in some sense,(Not specific to any faith), vs, naturalistic brain chemistry and BC can't account for the tie breakers, so that eliminates it. You cannot user any alternative answer that involves a god or religion because you are an atheist.


For example, maybe it's just BELIEF in God that causes people to behave differently and produces these outcomes.

First it has to be related to the experience it selfie all those cases where they are not seeking anything religious when the experience is unexpected and unsought. Secondly, you have no data or any kind that backs a claim that believing in some idea can give you the stamina and resolve to follow it out and change your life.No such studies exist.Third the studies done by guys like Wuthnow show that those having the experiences change like this but they compere to those who don't have it and they don't change.

Or maybe the psychological state of a person is the CAUSE of both the ME and the positive behavior. I don't think you have examined possibilities like these in any depth. In fact, it would require more scientific studies that are not included in your 200.

you have no idea because you have read nothing. this kind of thing we thought in debate all the time. you have no data about the prior state of people having mystical experiences, Some of the studies do deal witty it. There is no Constantine factor of that kind; in other words you have all these different people having mystical princesses there's no way to link them to the same mind set. 50% are children anyway and a bunch are not seeking or expecting,

statement (1) - agree. All effects have real causes.
statement (2) - disagree. Not all peak experiences are about the divine.
statement (3) - disagree. Correlation does nor mean consistent. People can have a ME and still have something bad happen to them. Furthermore, there are natural things that consistently produce positive results. Lack of negative effects does NOT argue against a natural cause.

a lot more is invoked than just saying you have some positive results. certain kinds of results and some such as the noetic are bound up in the experience themselves.
Joe Hinman said…
I have written a book that haws been lauded by the major researcher in the field and I have 200 studies, you are going to have to do more than just speculate. i can tell you know there are no studies that say what you are trying to say, you can't even prove you are dealing with mystical experience without something like the M scale.
im-skeptical said…
Then I give you reasons to think it must be God, ie the 8 tie breakers, you never answer them.
- Tie breakers? There is no tie. It's a matter of science versus faith.

YesI did that, That;s what the tie breakers do. We have a tie between "God" in some sense,(Not specific to any faith), vs, naturalistic brain chemistry and BC can't account for the tie breakers, so that eliminates it. You cannot user any alternative answer that involves a god or religion because you are an atheist.
- No, Joe. It's science versus faith, and there is no tie. Science always has a better explanation.

... So the void is not necessarily indcative of no God.
- And neither is the feeling of God necessarily indicative of God. That's just your faith talking, not science.

No it's not it makes perfect sense. The kind of positive experience is constant with the clams of religion and many embody religious belief such as presence of love, and giving meaning so on,
- Makes sense to someone who views everything through the lens of religious belief. You need to be objective and look at ALL the facts. You haven't done that.

Some of the studies do deal witty it. There is no Constantine factor of that kind;
- Show me a study that makes the causal link between God and outcomes. You are dreaming. The link is in your mind, because to you, that answer to every question is "God did it." That's not science.

certain kinds of results and some such as the noetic are bound up in the experience themselves.
- You are saying "People think it's God, therefore it must be God". Bullshit.


Joe Hinman said…
Then I give you reasons to think it must be God, ie the 8 tie breakers, you never answer them.

- Tie breakers? There is no tie. It's a matter of science versus faith.


Then I give you reasons to think it must be God, ie the 8 tie breakers, you never answer them.
- Tie breakers? There is no tie. It's a matter of science versus faith.

YesI did that, That;s what the tie breakers do. We have a tie between "God" in some sense,(Not specific to any faith), vs, naturalistic brain chemistry and BC can't account for the tie breakers, so that eliminates it. You cannot user any alternative answer that involves a god or religion because you are an atheist.
- No, Joe. It's science versus faith, and there is no tie. Science always has a better explanation.

... So the void is not necessarily indcative of no God.
- And neither is the feeling of God necessarily indicative of God. That's just your faith talking, not science.

No it's not it makes perfect sense. The kind of positive experience is constant with the clams of religion and many embody religious belief such as presence of love, and giving meaning so on,
- Makes sense to someone who views everything through the lens of religious belief. You need to be objective and look at ALL the facts. You haven't done that.

Some of the studies do deal witty it. There is no Constantine factor of that kind;
- Show me a study that makes the causal link between God and outcomes. You are dreaming. The link is in your mind, because to you, that answer to every question is "God did it." That's not science.

certain kinds of results and some such as the noetic are bound up in the experience themselves.
- You are saying "People think it's God, therefore it must be God". Bullshit.

In reality you can NOT provide mechanism that would explain why it's always long tern positive and never long term negative or why the noetic experiences embed with God. but atheist filter engage unknown information goes whoosh! it's gone, atheist filet protects from reason don't have to think it out the rear unaccounted for bits of info gone with atheist filter.

Me: Yes I did that, That;s what the tie breakers do. We have a tie between "God" in some sense,(Not specific to any faith), vs, naturalistic brain chemistry and BC can't account for the tie breakers, so that eliminates it. You cannot use any alternative answer that involves a god or religion because you are an atheist.

- No, Joe. It's science versus faith, and there is no tie. Science always has a better explanation.

no it's not, why should it be? who says science is opposed to faith? faith is not part of science's domain so science has to keep it's little number crunching mouth shut, science is not about disproving religion. that's your atheist pseudo science atheists made up-, Real science is not the enforcement mechanism of atheism.


... So the void is not necessarily inductive of no God.

Joe Hinman said…
- And neither is the feeling of God necessarily indicative of God. That's just your faith talking, not science.

yes it is, that's stupid, of course it is, if you see a color that you identify as red you see red, you don't have to prove it is red you see it, you see red. If you see rain falling out of the sky you don't have to prove you see rain you do see it. The semnses are proof in a prima facie sense That'; is all thiat;'s needed to warrnt belief, a prima facie sense.That the experience is a prioroir.

I gave three arguments that justify prima facie conclusion

(1) real effects need real causes

(2) the content is consistently about the divine, brain chemistry can choose content

(3) consistent lack of negative effects argues against purely naturalistic origin


Me:No it's not it makes perfect sense. The kind of positive experience is constant with the clams of religion and many embody religious belief such as presence of love, and giving meaning so on,


- Makes sense to someone who views everything through the lens of religious belief. You need to be objective and look at ALL the facts. You haven't done that.


atheist filter is not objective.It is totally subjective because it seeks to eliminate all proof of God. it doesn't care about truth at all i;s sole function is to protect the atheist from truth. The objective evidence tells us there is an experience that involves some sort of prima facie evidence of the divine or some sort of God, and that evidence is a priori part of the experience because what the noetic aspects do, They are inherent in the experience and they are about God or the divine.

with 200 studies giving us the same sets of findings its clearly objective,



Some of the studies do deal witty it. There is no Constantine factor of that kind;


- Show me a study that makes the causal link between God and outcomes. You are dreaming. The link is in your mind, because to you, that answer to every question is "God did it." That's not science.

I've been talking about the noetic function the whole tie you are too stupid to even ask what it is. It's exactly what you just asked for, all mystical experience has a noetic side. It is the sense that positive understandable information has been passed in the experience, all mystics some way with that, it is usually about life has meaning God is real, there is an answer to all the problems because there is power or mind or a force or a reality behind it all, the feeling of a larger sceame involving some higher power.

certain kinds of results and some such as the noetic are bound up in the experience themselves.

- You are saying "People think it's God, therefore it must be God". Bullshit.

There is reason indicative of god that is confirmed by the fact that it accomplishes the transformative task that religions promise to perform, it involves a priroi noetic aspects that are abouit God or the divine which means there is warrant for belief. There is reason to think it's god thus it's warranted to think so, it;snot proven that it is, belief ios warrranted.
Joe Hinman said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Hinman said…
Hey reader, did you notice Skepie played the little atheist "proof/no proof" trick again? He jumps over from the evidence as my argument presents it to prove the claims i made (that belief has a warrant) to his pseudo science belief.

The atheist pseudo science trick says any warrant established for belief is far short of actual proof so God cannot be proven and therefore it's irrational to believe. Or maybe they just assert that belief is unproven and leave the implication that this means it's not worth believing. The point is it is not willing to accept warrant as valid reason to believe. It, atheist pseudo science continues to imply belief is invalid because it's not proven.



his pseudo science, atheist speak thinks science is about proving truth. He knows better because he's heard of Popper(doubt that he's read Popper but he' heard the shtick, viri semilitude and disproving hypotheses; the one hypothesis left standing is assumed true. But if you do that and that hypothesis left standing is God then he pulls out the:you can't prove it: stick.

See I did everything that process calls for. I eliminated the other hypotheses (namely brain chemistry and polytheism) and now he wants studies that officially say :this proves God exists." But that's not veri similitude, that's not last hypothesis standing, it's the direct truth thing not the Popper thing, so he jumps over to the direct truth thing and challenges me to prove it when all the hypotheses he has to play are knocked down.

My argument is that beliefs warranted not that it's proven, So it;s enough to indicate a reason to believe not to actually prove it's true. Moreover, I have three counter arguments that employment the studies on ME. He only ever deals with one,and not all of that.

what we have said so far only covers part of the co-determinate argument, it doesn't even get to the point. He has not actually argued agaisnt even one of my arguments in toto.

The other two, epistemic judgement and universality of the experiences he doesn't even mention.
im-skeptical said…
Hey reader, did you notice Skepie played the little atheist "proof/no proof" trick again? He jumps over from the evidence as my argument presents it to prove the claims i made (that belief has a warrant) to his pseudo science belief.
- I invite the reader to search this thread for "prove", "proof", or "proving", and see who is talking about proof and who isn't. Hint: it isn't me.

The atheist pseudo science trick says any warrant established for belief is far short of actual proof so God cannot be proven and therefore it's irrational to believe. Or maybe they just assert that belief is unproven and leave the implication that this means it's not worth believing. The point is it is not willing to accept warrant as valid reason to believe. It, atheist pseudo science continues to imply belief is invalid because it's not proven.
- It is the stance of the empiricist that belief is warranted by objective empirical evidence. And feelings (as in "mystical experience") do not constitute objective evidence.

See I did everything that process calls for. I eliminated the other hypotheses (namely brain chemistry and polytheism) and now he wants studies that officially say :this proves God exists.
- No. I asked you to show that you have eliminated all alternative possibilities, and you haven't done that. I asked you to show where in all those studies where and hoe they make a link between God (as the causal agent) and the positive outcomes they cite. But they don't do that.

My argument is that beliefs warranted not that it's proven
- And my argument is that your religious belief isn't warranted by any valid method of logical and scientific analysis. The evidence doesn't support the conclusions you draw, and your logic is seriously flawed.

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Bayes Theorem And Probability of God: No Dice!

Where did Jesus say "It is better to give than receive?"

The Meaning of the Manger

If Christianity were true, would you become a Christian?

The Origin of Life and the Fallacy of Composition