Evidence that God is real

Discussion in 'Religion' started by James R, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    My own comments (which are highlighted in bold) on Craig's first (God is the only explanation for why is there something rather than nothing) argument:

    (I) God is the best explanation why anything at all exists.

    1. Every contingent thing has an explanation of its existence.

    The "Principle of Sufficient Reason" which is traditional among philosophers and assumed by many like Leibniz. We would like to think that everything has an explanation, but we don't really know that. (It looks more like a heuristic principle to me.) It obviously turns problematic when we are talking about reality in its entirety.

    2. If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is a transcendent, personal being.

    This one looks exceedingly circular, assuming what Craig wants to demonstrate. Here's his justification of it from the Philosophy Now article:

    "The explanation of the universe can lie only in a transcendent reality beyond it -- beyond space and time --- the existence of which transcendent reality is metaphysically necessary (otherwise its existence would also need explaining). Now there is only one way I can think of to get a contingent entity like the universe from a necessarily existing cause, and that is if the cause is an agent who can freely choose to create the contingent reality. It therefore follows that the best explanation of the existence of the contingent universe is a transcendent personal being --- which is what everybody means by 'God'."

    That's very weak in my opinion, based on it being the only thing that Craig can think of (with some assumptions about metaphysical necessity and contingency tossed in).

    He's not an idiot and no doubt perceives the vulnerability of #2. So he does attempt what may or may not be a better argument for proposition #2 in other writings. Let's assume there is some timeless impersonal explanation for why the entire physical universe exists. (Something like the laws of physics perhaps.) If so, then that explanation for the universe would hold true timelessly and we might (so Craig seemingly thinks) end up with an everlasting universe. There wouldn't be any reason why the universe began with a 'big bang', 13.8 billion years ago. Craig seems to think that making the universe's cause personal and volitional would solve that problem (if it is a problem), since God could have intended (however timelessly) that the universe would start at a particular point.

    I still think that's pretty weak. But it might arguably highlight a difficulty faced by the Something from Nothing theorists like Lawrence Krauss who try to spin the entire universe out of the seemingly timeless equations of theoretical physics. If the laws of physics are satisfactory explanation for the appearance of a universe, why weren't they just as capable of doing it long before the 'big bang'? (Or for that matter, right now?)

    3. The universe is a contingent thing.

    I'm very much inclined to agree, but once again, we really don't know.

    4. Therefore, the universe has an explanation of its existence.
    5. Therefore, the explanation of the universe is a transcendent, personal being.

    These conclusions are only as strong as assumptions #1 and #2.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    By observation.
    As explicitly specified: now all you have to do is copy/paste the stuff you think is evidence of the reality of God. If there is any such stuff, you have been saved the work of digging it up.
    You claim they contain evidence for the reality of God. They don't.
    You have provided nothing from that source.
    That's a lie.
    Your agenda is of course the posting of dishonest disparagements, but that one is kind of silly, given that you repeatedly quote me to the contrary.
    Meanwhile: You have provided no evidence for the reality of God.
    Neither has Craig, if it matters - Craig is not here, and neither is any of what you think is his evidence, so far as we know yet.
    Like I posted: of course.
    I even described the circumstances involved, that create that odd situation for some people.
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  5. Capracus Valued Senior Member

    Mathematics is essentially codified language, and morality is codified conditioned individual or group behavior. And both are empirically discernible in terms of expression.
    Because mathematics and morality can be defined by their knowable characteristics, where supernatural aspects of theology can’t.
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  7. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

    I think people are frequently asked to justify their moral judgements and in essence there is no evidence for moral judgements

    I do think that you might be able to point to societies where various styles of morality operate and pick which one appears to be successful

    Of course I am sure you can pick sections from each society as being best of kind

    Would picking best of kind from each society and blending them result in paradise?

    So at least morality has something to point to. Theist have NOTHING as I am sure you must have noted in other threads

    They do claim evidence is available. Just producing it seems to be a non starter

    Mathematicians can hold their own

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  8. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    What did you observe, and how did you observe it?

    I think that is for atheists to do. I already accept it as decent evidence. Again you should take a leaf out of Yazata’s book.

    Why would I want to dig it up?
    I already provided the source of evidence.


    If that were the case it would mean that they do match. So what is it, regarding evidence of God, makes what I write, different.

    I provided the source.
    You go and look it up.

    No it’s not.

    So basically you don’t think it is evidence of God. I do. That’s as far as we can get, unless you have something else to offer.

    Do you think it is possible that it could apply to atheists. Their worldview does make them prime candidates?

  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

    We did look up the source; it was interesting. Which is why we now know that you support his claims, including that genocide is OK, that gays can't be moral people and that evolution is true.
  10. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    ...and, notably, an absence of evidence for God.

    It seems that Bill Craig is off-topic in this thread.
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Your posts, Craig's writings; by reading the text on my computer screen.
    You did not provide the evidence you got from that source.
    We could get as far as you posting what you think is evidence of God - this entire thread was made available to you, so you could do that.
    Mindreading is not among the superpowers of atheists. You are the only one who can post what you think is evidence of the reality of God. Nobody else can do that for you.
    So post it, whatever it is.
    That's what this thread is for, remember?
  12. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Why Bill Craig? Why not cite Jesus as a source for evidence that God is real? How many times does one need to remind you that hearsay is not admissible as evidence.
  13. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    If I was to follow Jan Ardena's standards in this thread, I could conceivably argue that somebody (pick a name at random) has evidence that God doesn't exist. Go away and Google it if you don't believe me, I could say. Oh, you couldn't find what I was referring to? Didn't you read everything the guy ever wrote? You must have missed his evidence; it's your fault. Oh, you say you read some of his works and couldn't find any evidence? Well, it's no surprise that you don't agree with him; you're just a theist and it's your fault. What's that? You say I should present something from this guy that I personally agree with (in order to answer the question in the opening post)? What a silly request; I agree with everything he ever wrote about the evidence! Oh, you say the guy has no evidence; well, you would say that - you're in denial. If you have a problem with something in it, you'll have to post your objections to it. I don't have to post in good faith. I don't need to put in any effort. I'm not concerned with evidence anyway; I'm only in this thread to troll my opponents.

    Clearly, Jan's theism, whatever it is, doesn't extend as far as establishing moral standards of honesty and good faith in discussion. I would hope that theists of Jan's denomination, whatever it may be (overt Abrahamic theists, perhaps?), would be keen to distance themselves from Jan's example, as set in this thread. Unless dishonesty and evasion is part of the creed, I suppose.
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  14. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    I have saved this to my library. If occasion warrants can I use it to make a single grand summation and then gracefully withdraw from further discussion? I won't claim authorship...

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  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member


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  16. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    The power of prayer ( law of attraction to some)
    Just thinkin' on this topic and wanted to propose something my ex-wife (a devout Brazilian Catholic) said years ago:
    Something like this,
    "If your prayers are answered often enough what other evidence do you need?"

    I actually witnessed a couple of these prayer events (relatively trivial) that helped me understand possibly why the foundation of her faith and how it was reinforced and validated. While my personal interpretation was different to hers it was the claim of many many similar "coincidental" events that proved problematic.

    Bearing in mind that to those who have very little (abject poverty) the Church and family are deemed their greatest asset. They are very aware of any "divine" coincidence.
    The problem is that while it may be easy to dismiss a few events as being purely coincidental, a hundred events of significant calibre are harder to do so.

    They would simply state that it is impossible to predict God's response, heracy if you try and not open to empirical investigation.

    Yet 100's of circumstantial prayer -events indicate something is happening..exactly what was my question. ( at the time)
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  17. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

    Would you be lost if it never existed?
  18. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    What about the 100's of circumstantial prayers that weren't answered?
    Why were they not answered? To difficult to produce results? Person making the prayer deemed not worthy of response?
    If you can make requests of an omnipotent creator, all prayers should be equally answered, no? Else any prayer that is not answered is a sign that your request is not worthy of answer. A dangerous assumption.

    If I pray for my team to win and it wins, do I thank god or the team? If it loses do I blame god or the team?
    If it is a matter of probability, you don't need god. Time itself will resolve your prayer if you apply fervent work to achieve the goal of the fervent prayer.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    A feature of the human mind that will keep psychics and astrologers in business forever.

    Plus the known benefits of the virtues often accompanying prayer - diligence, humility, an acceptance of circumstances not in one's control without depression or induced apathy, an amelioration of tension and diminution of fear, and (especially) an adoption of gratitude as a basic frame of one's relationship with the world as well as other people.
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  20. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    Another assumption!


    Their is nothing immoral or dishonest about giving the name of a source as a response to a question. Other atheists here have looked up the source and offered their opinion. There’s nothing stopping you from doing the same.

    William Craig’s arguments for evidence of God, is not buried deep into everything he ever wrote. It is all over the internet (loads on you tube). There are sections dedicated to just that topic, lasting as little as 2 minutes.

    You’re the one who is being dishonest James.
    It’s becoming obvious you are not concerned with evidence for God.

  21. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

    So you know for certain Bill Craig has no evidence for God, because you observed it through what I write, and what Bill Craig writes on your computer screen.

    Needless to say I’m not in the least bit surprised.

    No, but I provided the source.

    And I did provide what I think is evidence of God.

    But knowing for certain there is no evidence for God based on what you read on your computer screen is?

    I would have thought mind reading would be a doddle by comparison.

    I did. I gave my source, Bill Craig. I even told you what to type in google.

    See above.

  22. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    That depends on whether you are doing it to evade, lie, troll, etc.
    In your case, you are posting dishonestly at a basic and fundamental level. You are bearing false witness, in the language of the Scripture you claim to respect, in every post you make.
    Several, sure. They discovered no evidence for the reality of God, though. And they discovered nothing written by you - only Craig.
    "Arguments for evidence of God" is another example of your continual and dishonest word-fogging.
    Meanwhile, you have presented not one single example of what you think is evidence for the reality of God.
    Nope. You seem to have forgotten what the subject was.

    btw: In addition to discovering no evidence for the reality of God in Craig's writings, I also discovered that they were written by Craig, and he appears to claim that they are entirely his thinking, not yours. So I'm not sure why you keep referring to him, instead of posting what you think is evidence for the reality of God.
    The existence of Bill Craig is not evidence for the reality of your God, as far as anyone can tell. Why are you posting the existence of Bill Craig as evidence for the reality of your God?
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  23. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    How about this: Somebody from here gets hold of Craig, and has him call Ardena. Ardena tells Craig what he, Ardena, thinks is evidence for the reality of God. Then Craig writes it down in an essay, with nothing else in that essay - maybe with the title "What Ardena Thinks Is Evidence For The Reality Of God". Ardena proofreads it, agrees he got it right, and signs off on it. Craig posts it on his website. Ardena posts a link to it here. Then we link and read it. Then we find out.

    Then this classic bit of fundie-trolling a science forum can make at least that much progress.

    One obvious problem, of course, is that Ardena would then be accountable for what was in that essay, having signed off on it. Another is that the essay might not contain sufficient disparagements of science types and their worldview - but then it isn't posted on a science forum, so maybe that's not an issue.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
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