Our server costs ~$56 per month to run. Please consider donating or becoming a Patron to help keep the site running. Help us gain new members by following us on Twitter and liking our page on Facebook!
Current time: August 8, 2022, 11:35 am

Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
#1
A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
Cleanthes (Hume's Dialogues):  The order and arrangement of nature, the curious adjustment of final causes, the plain use and intention of every part and organ; all these bespeak in the clearest language an intelligent cause or author.

And the clearest language of God's revelation doesn't demand further elaborations and contrived arguments. The very fact that arguments are revised, polished, and sometimes reformulated extensively, seems to be a disservice to theism. In what follows I will try to formalize this intuition

Let A be a new successful (valid and sound) argument for the God of classical theism, based on an uncontroversial set of premises, and discovered by someone (a philosopher, for example) at the date T. Here is now an argument (by reductio ad absurdum) against the very possibility of A.

1. Argument A wasn't known to (almost) anyone before the date T.
2. (From 1.) No one was rationally justified in believing in God before T.
3. (Restatement of 2.) God didn't make his existence known to anyone before T.
4*. God is willing, and was always willing, to make his existence known to everyone.
5. If God is willing, and was always willing, to make his existence known to everyone, then God was willing to make his existence known to anyone who lived before the date T.
6. (From the conjunction of 3. and 5.) God is both willing and unwilling to make his existence to everyone before T. Absurd conclusion. (3. and non-3. are simultaneously true, non-3. being: God made his existence known to at least one person. And 5. entails non-3.)

Therefore, there is no date t at which belief in the God of classical theism suddenly becomes rationally justified. The newness of any purportedly successful argument for God's existence is decisive evidence against it. The only possible argument for theism is the teleological argument in its earliest formulations. Behe's formulation, for example, rests on very recent findings in biology, therefore it's unsound if my argument above is sound. Similarly the CA rests on very recent results/theories in cosmology like the Big Bang, unsound for the same reason.

*In defense of premise 4: God not willing to make his existence known to everyone seems to contradict omnibenevolence (one of the tenets of classical theism) because many believers freely and actively seek a relationship with God. If premise 4 is not true, then the quest for a valid argument in favor of God's existence no longer has any value, and the logical negation of premise 4 can be used to argue for God's non-existence (as in divine hiddenness arguments);

If my argument above is true, then the theist's sole task would be to make the cost of rejecting the TA as heavy and unbearable as possible for the atheist, which seems doable by making analogies with some propositions that nobody usually disputes, like the existence of an external world,, or of other minds, etc.
Qur'anic revelation is the sole path to ultimate reality. All argumentation and philosophy is an expression of arrogance and an overestimation of human cognitive ability. 

"But believe me, Cleanthes, the most natural feeling that a well-disposed mind will have on this occasion is a longing desire and expectation that God will be pleased to remove or at least to lessen this profound ignorance, by giving mankind some particular revelation, revealing the nature, attributes, and operations of the divine object of our faith." (Hume's Dialogues)


Reply
#2
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
Lame. 2 doesn't follow from 1. 5 is a bare assertion and causes dependent arguments to beg the question.
[Image: Fenrir-sign.jpg]
Reply
#3
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:03 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Lame.  2 doesn't follow from 1.  5 is a bare assertion and causes dependent arguments to beg the question.

5. is clearly entailed by 4...

2. may be based on some controversial definition of rational belief. But you should consider whether you really want to reject 2.
Qur'anic revelation is the sole path to ultimate reality. All argumentation and philosophy is an expression of arrogance and an overestimation of human cognitive ability. 

"But believe me, Cleanthes, the most natural feeling that a well-disposed mind will have on this occasion is a longing desire and expectation that God will be pleased to remove or at least to lessen this profound ignorance, by giving mankind some particular revelation, revealing the nature, attributes, and operations of the divine object of our faith." (Hume's Dialogues)


Reply
#4
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:06 pm)Klorophyll Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:03 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Lame.  2 doesn't follow from 1.  5 is a bare assertion and causes dependent arguments to beg the question.

5. is clearly entailed by 4...

2. may be based on some controversial definition of rational belief. But you should consider whether you really want to reject 2.

Sorry, my numbering was off. I meant 4.

No, 2 isn't dependent on a controversial definition of rational belief. A isn't the only way to rationally justify belief, so 2 doesn't follow from 1.

You're also ignoring revelation, divine intervention, and sensus divinitatus, all of which can rationally justify belief prior to A.

You're also ignoring that God may have reasons for remaining hidden which would also pooch your argument by invalidating the sequelae from 4.


Anyway, the teleological argument is crap. You're just too stupid to realize this.
[Image: Fenrir-sign.jpg]
Reply
#5
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Sorry, my numbering was off.  I meant 4.

Yes, 4 is controversial, OFC. But again, nobody is interested in pursuing a God who isn't willing to let his existence known to everyone. And if God isn't willing to let his existence known to everyone, then no one will derive an argument in favor of his existence (God is all-powerful and can prevent this from happening).

(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: No, 2 isn't dependent on a controversial definition of rational belief.  A isn't the only way to rationally justify belief, so 2 doesn't follow from 1.

If you really mean this, then you're no longer an evidentialist.

(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: You're also ignoring revelation, divine intervention, and sensus divinitatus, all of which can rationally justify belief prior to A.

That's kind of the point of my thread: revelation and sensus divinatus are not new arguments. By contrast, all new arguments fail if my argument above is true.
Qur'anic revelation is the sole path to ultimate reality. All argumentation and philosophy is an expression of arrogance and an overestimation of human cognitive ability. 

"But believe me, Cleanthes, the most natural feeling that a well-disposed mind will have on this occasion is a longing desire and expectation that God will be pleased to remove or at least to lessen this profound ignorance, by giving mankind some particular revelation, revealing the nature, attributes, and operations of the divine object of our faith." (Hume's Dialogues)


Reply
#6
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
I agree with Woody Allen, “If it turns out that there is a God...the worst that you can say about him is that basically he's an underachiever.”
And without delay Peter went quickly out of the synagogue (assembly) and went unto the house of Marcellus, where Simon lodged: and much people followed him...And Peter turned unto the people that followed him and said: Ye shall now see a great and marvellous wonder. And Peter seeing a great dog bound with a strong chain, went to him and loosed him, and when he was loosed the dog received a man's voice and said unto Peter: What dost thou bid me to do, thou servant of the unspeakable and living God? Peter said unto him: Go in and say unto Simon in the midst of his company: Peter saith unto thee, Come forth abroad, for thy sake am I come to Rome, thou wicked one and deceiver of simple souls. And immediately the dog ran and entered in, and rushed into the midst of them that were with Simon, and lifted up his forefeet and in a loud voice said: Thou Simon, Peter the servant of Christ who standeth at the door saith unto thee: Come forth abroad, for thy sake am I come to Rome, thou most wicked one and deceiver of simple souls. And when Simon heard it, and beheld the incredible sight, he lost the words wherewith he was deceiving them that stood by, and all of them were amazed. (The Acts of Peter, 9)
Reply
#7
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:12 pm)Klorophyll Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Sorry, my numbering was off.  I meant 4.

Yes, 4 is controversial, OFC. But again, nobody is interested in pursuing a God who isn't willing to let his existence known to everyone. And if God isn't willing to let his existence known to everyone, then no one will derive an argument in favor of his existence (God is all-powerful and can prevent this from happening).

Isn't willing and isn't always willing aren't the same thing. God supposedly will reveal himself to all after death.


(February 26, 2022 at 6:12 pm)Klorophyll Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: No, 2 isn't dependent on a controversial definition of rational belief.  A isn't the only way to rationally justify belief, so 2 doesn't follow from 1.

If you really mean this, then you're no longer an evidentialist.

If you say so.


(February 26, 2022 at 6:12 pm)Klorophyll Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: You're also ignoring revelation, divine intervention, and sensus divinitatus, all of which can rationally justify belief prior to A.

That's kind of the point my thread: revelation and sensus divinatus are not new arguments. By contrast, all new arguments fail if my argument above is true.


Revelation and sensus divinitatus aren't arguments; they're direct experience.

And again, the teleological argument is crap, so I don't see where this is going, other than to circle round to sketchy premises and the inevitable conclusion that there are no 'successful' arguments for God.
[Image: Fenrir-sign.jpg]
Reply
#8
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Anyway, the teleological argument is crap.  You're just too stupid to realize this.

Neither Kant nor Hume agree with you. I guess I should be proud of how stupid I am.
Qur'anic revelation is the sole path to ultimate reality. All argumentation and philosophy is an expression of arrogance and an overestimation of human cognitive ability. 

"But believe me, Cleanthes, the most natural feeling that a well-disposed mind will have on this occasion is a longing desire and expectation that God will be pleased to remove or at least to lessen this profound ignorance, by giving mankind some particular revelation, revealing the nature, attributes, and operations of the divine object of our faith." (Hume's Dialogues)


Reply
#9
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:23 pm)Klorophyll Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:09 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Anyway, the teleological argument is crap.  You're just too stupid to realize this.

Neither Kant nor Hume agree with you. I guess I should be proud of how stupid I am.

You're full of shit.  I can quote you where Hume shits all over the teleological argument.  Show us where Kant or Hume say the teleological argument isn't crap.  

(And Kant is a moot point, as he was a theist bound determined to bend himself into a pretzel to prove God, so he's hardly a worthwhile defeated.)

Quote:My main reservation about what Cleanthes has said,
Philo remarked, is not so much that he bases all religious
arguments on experience as that his arguments seem not
to be the most certain and unbreakable even of that inferior
·experience-based· kind. That a stone will fall, that fire
will burn, that the earth has solidity, we have observed
thousands of times; and when any new instance of this sort
is presented we don’t hesitate to draw the usual conclusion—
·this stone will fall, this fire will burn, the earth that I
am about to put my right foot on is solid·. The exact
similarity of the cases gives us a perfect assurance of a
similar outcome; and we never want or look for stronger
evidence than that. But the evidence is less strong when
the cases are less than perfectly alike; any reduction in
similarity, however tiny, brings a corresponding reduction
in the strength of the evidence; and as we move down
that scale we may eventually reach a very weak analogy,
·leading to a conclusion· that is confessedly liable to error
and uncertainty. ...

...If we see a house, Cleanthes, we conclude with the
greatest certainty that it had an architect or builder; because
this is precisely the kind of effect that we have experienced
as coming from that kind of cause. But surely you won’t say
•that the universe is so like a house that we can with the
same certainty infer a similar cause, or •that the analogy is
here entire and perfect. The unlikeness in this case is so
striking that the most you can offer ·on the basis of it· is a
guess, a conjecture, a presumption about a similar cause;
and I leave it to you to consider how that offering will be
received in the world!

David Hume | Dialogues concerning Natural Religion | Part II
[Image: Fenrir-sign.jpg]
Reply
#10
RE: A "meta-argument" against all future arguments for God's existence ?
(February 26, 2022 at 6:23 pm)Angrboda Wrote: Revelation and sensus divinitatus aren't arguments; they're direct experience.

Muslims use Muhammad's religious experience in arguments to justify their belief that Islam is true. Same with Christians, Mormons, etc. There is a plethora of arguments based on revelation out there...

(February 26, 2022 at 6:26 pm)Angrboda Wrote:
(February 26, 2022 at 6:23 pm)Klorophyll Wrote: Neither Kant nor Hume agree with you. I guess I should be proud of how stupid I am.

You're full of shit.  I can quote you where Hume shits all over the teleological argument.  

The quote in the thread is from Hume's Dialogues. Some interpretations of Hume's work say that he was a deist. His criticism of the argument from design is well known, OFC. 
Kant also mentioned the teleological argument with respect, even if he ultimately rejected it. Your gratuitous slurs, however, clearly show that you don't know what you're babbling about.
Qur'anic revelation is the sole path to ultimate reality. All argumentation and philosophy is an expression of arrogance and an overestimation of human cognitive ability. 

"But believe me, Cleanthes, the most natural feeling that a well-disposed mind will have on this occasion is a longing desire and expectation that God will be pleased to remove or at least to lessen this profound ignorance, by giving mankind some particular revelation, revealing the nature, attributes, and operations of the divine object of our faith." (Hume's Dialogues)


Reply



Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  My Almighty VS your argument against it Won2blv 43 1377 May 5, 2022 at 9:13 am
Last Post: The Grand Nudger
  Atheism and the existence of peanut butter Klorophyll 710 26161 April 6, 2022 at 8:57 am
Last Post: Helios
  What is the best counter argument against "What do you lose by believing?" Macoleco 25 1103 May 1, 2021 at 8:05 pm
Last Post: The Grand Nudger
  How may one refute the religious stonewall argument "all is one"? Osopatata 29 1689 December 21, 2020 at 4:05 pm
Last Post: HappySkeptic
  Arguments against Soul FlatAssembler 327 13214 February 20, 2020 at 11:28 am
Last Post: The Grand Nudger
  The Argument Against Evil-lution no one 19 1919 January 5, 2020 at 7:58 am
Last Post: Gawdzilla Sama
  How to easily defeat any argument for God Tom Fearnley 629 13374 November 22, 2019 at 9:27 pm
Last Post: Tom Fearnley
  Arguments Against Creator God GrandizerII 77 15544 November 16, 2019 at 9:38 am
Last Post: The Grand Nudger
Information The Best Logique Evidence of God Existence Nogba 225 14099 August 2, 2019 at 11:44 am
Last Post: comet
  Atheists being asked about the existence of Jesus Der/die AtheistIn 154 10564 January 24, 2019 at 1:30 pm
Last Post: The Grand Nudger



Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)