Riker's Mailbox

Thursday, December 20, 2007


I was gonna save this for much later, but reading a recent series of posts and commentary on Possummomma's blog, I had to sound off on it...

I've read through dozens of debates between theists and atheists over the last year or two, and over the course of doing so, I noticed a recurring phenomenon that seems to be the single most common reason why these debates often end in a flaming wreck.

The Christians who fight tooth and nail against the most solid reasoning, the ones who unfailingly and effortlessly have a response and excuse for every monumental counterpoint, the ones who inevitably turn into violent and aggressive animals once their best attacks are parried, all seem to inhabit the same trait: they can't "turn off" the existence of God.

In other words...

A lot of these Christians seem unable to take the cognitive leap into someone else's perspective. They try to wade through all our arguments under the pretense that God still exists, instead of looking at it under the assumption that he does not.

It is the ability to do this very thing that allows us atheists to be so solid in our conclusions about the world... when weighing the theistic arguments, we can and do look at things under the pretense that God exists.

And when we do that, what we observe simply doesn't jibe with that presumption.

There will always be the problem of theistic blindness to the reality that the world does not behave as it undoubtedly would if God existed. Christian gamblers have their prayers answered exactly as often as non-Christians who don't pray and end up winning. God only heals those who have the exact conditions that we as humans know how to cure with our own learned scientific skills. God might actually exist and be doing these things.

Well if that's the case, then God's trying awfully hard to remain indistinguishable from 'nothing at all'. And in that case, then... what in the world is the difference?

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