Re: [asa] scientism question

From: Keith Miller <>
Date: Thu Jan 08 2009 - 19:03:53 EST

Bernie wrote:

> This atheist says he does not believe in God (just as he does not
> believe in the tooth fairy or Santa). He claims to have no
> "beliefs" in anything. He says that if you believe in God, then it
> is up to you to justify. Since he doesn't, he has nothing to
> justify. Same with the spirit- if you think it exists, then you
> justify it- he doesn't have to justify it as he has no belief.
> Same with life after death- he says the body dies and that's it.
> If you think something else happens, that's your belief and up to
> you to validate- not him.
> See my difficulty in dealing with him? I'm trying to challenge him
> and get him to see that everyone has a "belief system."

Don't get hung up on the word "belief." The question is how does he
justify his position that there is no God? Again, appealing to
science is irrelevant, since science cannot investigate the
supernatural. If he does not wish to make any argument beyond a mere
statement that nature is all there is -- then he is simply making no
argument at all. He must have reasons for his belief, whether or not
he is willing or able to state them. There must be reasons why he
chooses not to seriously consider the existence of God. He may even
be completely blind to his reasons.

Many philosophical and moral arguments have been made for atheism.
Is this person really completely unaware of these? For many atheists
the problem of natural evil and the problem of pain are primary
barriers to belief. Are these significant for this person? If so,
you now have the basis for a theological discussion.


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Received on Thu Jan 8 19:07:48 2009

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