Atheists Struggle With Their Evidence Demands

I went fishing for atheists:

After responding to one atheist, another one pops up:

And then a very typical set of exchanges shall follow, where the atheists will struggle mightily. Behold…..

Another atheist tries to help:

Then we get a lot of this:

The other atheist again tries to help:

The othet atheist raises his example offered earlier – a miraculous healing:

And here is how it ends, as I figure it’s a good place to stop:

LOL. I’ve been pointing out a fatal flaw in their atheism and they have no defense. No reponse. They remain completely oblivious, to the point of trying to insert a tired cliche at the last response. I think these two atheists help us to see that modern day atheism is rooted in shallow talking points rather than deep thinking.

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22 Responses to Atheists Struggle With Their Evidence Demands

  1. Ilíon says:

    ==I think these two atheists help us to see that modern day atheism is rooted in shallow talking points rather than deep thinking.==

    Atheism has *always* been “rooted in shallow talking points rather than deep thinking.”

  2. Kevin says:

    Watching that exchange is like watching a progressive try to answer the question “What is a woman?”

  3. They don’t care. They have no interest in answers or thirst for knowledge. They are happy having no explanation for the existence of the universe, its fine-tuning etc, as long as they don’t have to accept a theistic deity who can see their every move and wants to tell them what to do.

  4. Michael says:

    For it, was like watching Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne.

  5. Ilíon says:

    ==Watching that exchange is like watching a progressive try to answer the question “What is a woman?”==

    Intellectualy dishonesty does tend to run in well-worn ruts.

  6. Kevin says:

    For it, was like watching Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne.

    At least they’re funny, and good comes of their antics.

  7. Mr. Ron says:

    Romans 1:28 explains why they remain oblivious.

  8. Chaudhari says:

    Our old friend Carl Sagan:

    “A fire-breathing dragon lives in my garage.”

    …”Show me,” you say. I lead you to my garage. You look inside and see a ladder, empty paint cans, an old tricycle — but no dragon.

    “Where’s the dragon?” you ask.

    “Oh, she’s right here,” I reply, waving vaguely. “I neglected to mention that she’s an invisible dragon.”

    You propose spreading flour on the floor of the garage to capture the dragon’s footprints.

    “Good idea,” I say, “but this dragon floats in the air.”

    Then you’ll use an infrared sensor to detect the invisible fire.

    “Good idea, but the invisible fire is also heatless.”

    You’ll spray-paint the dragon and make her visible.

    “Good idea, but she’s an incorporeal dragon and the paint won’t stick.” And so on. I counter every physical test you propose with a special explanation of why it won’t work.

    …Your inability to invalidate my hypothesis is not at all the same thing as proving it true.

    …Imagine that, despite none of the tests being successful, you wish to be scrupulously open-minded. So you don’t outright reject the notion that there’s a fire-breathing dragon in my garage. You merely put it on hold.

    If this were a belief system, call it dragonism, a dragonist might argue that a fire occurring the garage would count as evidence for an incorporeal, invisible fire-breathing dragon.

    An adragonist might respond, “There are many possible explanations for a fire occurring in the garage, all of which are mundane and have been witnessed before. Why reach for the explanation of an invisible, incorporeal dragon? That’s just Dragon of the Gaps!”

    “Oho!” says the dragonist, “Well, then, what would count as evidence for an incorporeal, invisible, fire-breathing dragon?”

    After the adragonist proposes something, the dragonist responds, “What you have proposed is a Gap. That can only be evidence if the Dragon of the Gaps argument is valid. So is it valid? If the Dragon of the Gaps argument is not valid, then nothing could ever be evidence for a dragon. A perfectly closed mind.”

    What would you say to a dragonist who delights in going around baiting adragonists to fall into his trap? Is he bolstering the case for dragonism? Might it appear to others that he is inadvertently doing the opposite?

  9. TFBW says:

    Was the entire purpose of that meandering narrative an attempt to sow a seed of doubt? “Oh, noes! I might be hurting my own cause!” What is your cause, Chaudhari, that you engage in such amateurish psyops? Do you even know what motivates you?

  10. Kevin says:

    What would you say to a dragonist who delights in going around baiting adragonists to fall into his trap?

    It’s amusing watching how easy it is to refute adragonists’ talking points. Keep up the good work!

    Is he bolstering the case for dragonism?

    Refuting adragonist propaganda is a worthy goal in of itself.

  11. Ilíon says:

    ==Refuting adragonist propaganda is a worthy goal in of itself.==

    Especially as the ‘adragonists’ are leading people to their deaths.

  12. The problem with Sagan’s analogy is that atheists don’t have any competing explanations for the origin of the universe, fine-tuning of the universe and so on. If anything, the analogy works the other way around. Suggesting that everything in the universe came into being uncaused from nothing is, to quote William Lane Craig, “literally worse than magic”.

  13. MP says:

    So, Chaudhari, let’s change the invisible dragon to a very visible puppy.

    Won’t “adogist” be just as successful, as “adragonist”?

    What evidence can “dogist” offer, that wouldn’t be dismissed as a “gap”?

    Can “dogist” say that the dog can be seen? “Adogist” can answer that this is a gap, for there might be a different explanation. He can even offer one: it might be a statue.

    Can “dogist” say that the dog can be heard? “Adogist” can still answer that this is a gap, for there might be a different explanation. He can even offer one: it might be a sound recording.

    Can “dogist” say that the dog can be touched? “Adogist” can still answer that this is a gap, for there might be a different explanation. He can even offer one: it might be a plush toy.

    Can “dogist” say that the dog can be seen to move? “Adogist” can still answer that this is a gap, for there might be a different explanation. He can even offer one: it might be a robot.

    Can “dogist” say that… Actually, it does not matter. That still won’t help. “Adogist” can still answer that this is a gap, for there might be a different explanation. Maybe he won’t be able to offer any, but that won’t stop him from saying that maybe science will find one in the future.

    So, all you can show by that example is that someone who is stubborn can dismiss all evidence and refuse to believe.

    You can show that someone who decides what is the null hypothesis and what evidence is admissible cannot be persuaded to reject the null hypothesis by any evidence, if he doesn’t want to be persuaded.

    You can show that you can’t be forced to believe by any evidence we can give.

    And, well, we definitely agree. People are forced to do things by force, torture, violence, threats, social pressure, bribes… They are not forced by evidence.

    But we think that merely being stubborn is not a honest and reasonable position worthy of great respect.

  14. Dhay says:

    I observe that Chaudhari and MP are very familiar handles, sockpuppet handles of a familiar troll.

  15. Michael says:

    Atheist insists “there is no evidence for your god.” I ask, “well, what could count as evidence for my god?” Atheist now complains: “It’s a trap!!”

  16. Ilíon says:

    N2C:The problem with Sagan’s analogy is that atheists don’t have any competing explanations for the origin of the universe, fine-tuning of the universe and so on. …

    The God-denialist position is in an even worse state than that. It’s not *merely* that the atheistic metaphysic doesn’t “have any competing explanations for the origin of the universe, fine-tuning of the universe and so on”, it’s that easily known/observed facts about “Life, the Universe and Everything” ™ *contradict* what must be true if atheism were indeed the truth about the nature od reality; and thus, the intellectually consistent God-denier is force to assert obvious absurdities.

    N2C:… Suggesting that everything in the universe came into being uncaused from nothing is, to quote William Lane Craig, “literally worse than magic”.

    God-denialists often try to hypnotize themselves with contemplation of “Deep Woo”.

  17. Chaudhari says:

    The problem with Sagan’s analogy is that atheists…

    Actually, the “The Dragon in My Garage” chapter of The Demon-Haunted World is an analogy with the widespread phenomenon of alien abduction/visitation experiences. What are we to make of people who are so sure that they have been abducted or visited by aliens? They aren’t crazy; there is definitely something going on, even if that something is only going on in their mind. Understanding what is happening may require us to confront something about our own fallibility when it comes to the feeling of personal certainty.

    Sagan does briefly mention religion once near the very end of the chapter, but not without the significant justification given by the chapter. If we really understand what is going on with this alien visitation stuff, about how certain all these people are about their alien experiences, about how the evidence remains elusive despite their deeply felt experiences, that should permit us to inquire about other deeply felt experiences.

  18. Chaudhari says:

    Atheist insists “there is no evidence for your god.”

    Please note the last part of the quote,

    Imagine that, despite none of the tests being successful, you wish to be scrupulously open-minded. So you don’t outright reject the notion that there’s a fire-breathing dragon in my garage. You merely put it on hold.

    When we’re presented with a vague notion that some kind of thing exists, there’s no need to reject it outright; we just put the notion “on hold”.

    An adragonist might go too far by claiming, “There is no evidence for an invisible, incorporeal, fire-breathing dragon.” Now the adragonist is in hot doo-doo, for now he is obliged to justify his claim by explaining what would count as evidence, as his claim already suggests that he has such knowledge.

    By contrast, an adragonist who makes no claim but merely puts the idea “on hold” is under no such obligation.

    So let us grant that there are adragonists and atheists who go too far, who say, “There is no evidence for…” Let us commend you for seeking out and discovering random atheists on the internet who go too far. You have successfully shown that they go too far.

    But note that the very same technique for refuting atheists who have gone too far also works for refuting adragonists who have gone too far.

    The post just seems like an own goal to me. It presumably aims to be pro-theist, but ends up being anti-theist because it highlights the inherent problem with vague existence claims.

    The technique works for any vaguely-defined entity. It’d be easy to find someone who goes too far with the claim, “There is no evidence for fairies.” We can easily refute that guy, too, using this technique. Does refuting fairy-deniers support the case for the existence of fairies? No, because that is “not at all the same thing as proving it true”.

    The post only brings attention to how similar these vague existence claims are, and that’s why it looks like an own goal.

  19. Chaudhari says:

    I had to look up “psyops”.

    : military operations usually aimed at influencing the enemy’s state of mind through noncombative means (such as distribution of leaflets)

    What are you suggesting?

  20. TFBW says:

    Draw your own conclusions. You didn’t answer my questions.

  21. Kevin says:

    Does refuting fairy-deniers support the case for the existence of fairies?

    The title of the post is “Atheists Struggle with Their Evidence Demands”. Not “Evidence for the Existence of God”.

    Refuting atheists is the POINT. Any other topic is a tangent.

  22. FZM says:

    But note that the very same technique for refuting atheists who have gone too far also works for refuting adragonists who have gone too far.

    With the case of the invisible and incorporeal dragon, a relevant question seems to be to ask why someone is referring to ‘it’ as a dragon, as much as asking something more specific like ‘what evidence is there for the existence of this ‘dragon?’.

    The technique works for any vaguely-defined entity.

    It doesn’t seem a vaguely defined entity though, as much as a strangely defined one.

    Its only empirically observable properties seem to be periodic emissions of fire.

    You could add some sort of caveat that for an entity to count as more than vaguely defined it requires a certain number of empirical properties that must be manifest with reasonable regularity, which would be interesting.

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