Re: [asa] Dawkins, religion, and children

From: <>
Date: Tue May 01 2007 - 14:41:57 EDT

This is what Plantiga has to say about Dawkins
improbablity argument:

"...suppose we concede, at least for purposes of argument,
that God is complex. ..why does Dawkins think it follows
that God would be improbable? Given materialism and the
idea that the ultimate objects in our universe are the
elementary particles of physics, perhaps a being that knew
a great deal would be improbable... Of course we aren't
given materialism. Dawkins is arguing that theism is
improbable; it would be dialectically deficient in
excelsis to argue this by appealing to materialism as a
premise. Of course it is unlikely that there is such a
person as God if materialism is true; in fact materialism
logically entails that there is no such person as God; but
it would be obviously question-begging to argue that
theism is improbable because materialism is true."

On Tue, 1 May 2007 09:06:17 -0700
  PvM <> wrote:
> I think that Dawkins position is a bit more subtle than
>that. Dawkins'
> position is not one of a-priori non-existence of God but
>rather a more
> subtle, and thus much harder to reject, argument based
> improbabilities.
> <quote>The God Hypothesis is also very close to being
>ruled out by the
> laws of probability. </quote>
> On a scale of 1 to 7, where 1 Strong theist. 100 per
>cent probability
> of God. In the words of C. G. Jung, 'I do not believe, I
>know.' and 7
> Strong atheist. 'I know there is no God, with the same
>conviction as
> Jung "knows" there is one.', Dawkins ranks himself in
>category 6 Very
> low probability, but short of zero. De facto atheist. 'I
>cannot know
> for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I
>live my life on
> the assumption that he is not there.'
> <quote>Hence category 7 is in practice rather emptier
>than its
> opposite number, category 1, which has many devoted
>inhabitants. I
> count myself in category 6, but leaning towards 7 - 1 am
>agnostic only
> to the extent that I am agnostic about fairies at the
>bottom of the
> garden.</quote>

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Received on Tue May 1 15:57:44 2007

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