Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Doubletalk On Verificationism

I recently tweeted:

Think about it. What kind of evidence would a theist need to be shown that contradicts their theology? For most, if not all theists, they'd have to be shown empirical evidence. That's right. Theists raise the bar to the level of empirical evidence when it comes to any science that contradicts their beliefs. But they all make exceptions when it comes to the supernatural claims which skeptics reject due to the fact that they cannot be verified.

This is a clear contradiction.

Take the soul for example. We have no evidence that we can use to verify its existence. The soul must be believed on faith. Every theist knows this, and yet, the theist will accuse the skeptic of being a verificationist, or a positivist, if he demands empirical scientific evidence for the soul.

But then the theist will demand that same level of empirical scientific evidence for anything that goes against their theology. For example, with evolution most creationists demand to see with their own eyes one species evolving into another; only then can evolution be true. And when it comes to cosmology, many theists demand to see the multiverse with their own eyes in order for them to believe it - mathematical descriptions are just not enough.

I'm just saying that if the theist wants to be a bit skeptical about things that we cannot directly see, then why not be consistent and apply that to angels, demons, the soul and to god himself?


  1. Good point. By the way, great article in NYT today - Opinionator piece "Did Zeus Exist?" by Gary Gutting, prof of philosophy. The argument being that he could have existed, based on many of the arguments believers use.

    1. It looks like Gutting's article also addresses your own reason for supposing the god of Christianity exists (as indicated in a previous comment) - your own personal experiences :-)

  2. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Ordinary require ordinary evidence.

    They seem to think extraordinary claims require ordinary evidence. Ordinary require extraordinary evidence.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...