There’s no need. The atheist is not seeking metaphysical certainty. The atheist is merely choosing how to live his life. And for that, it makes no difference whether God does not exist or God is hiding in such a way as to leave no evidence.
I don’t have to completely rule out Bigfoot in order to not believe in Bigfoot.
Looking around, I found some works by Barry Stroud that are of interest. I think I will read up a bit, and I may bother you with some posts in the future. Trading barbs is fun once in a while, but I think there is a good, informed discussion worth having at some point.
This is not about what you are able to disbelieve.
If it is the nature of God to hide himself, then the fact that you cannot discern him is not evidence that he does not exist, but on the contrary, evidence that he quite possibly does.
Well I disagree with this. The nature of God is to reveal himself, because we can’t see him on our own. He appears hidden, but that’s just because or view is limited, not because he hides.
Can you explain this statement? I’m well aware that not everyone agrees with Plantinga, but AFAIK he is still regarded as a major philosopher of religion of the 20th century.
I don’t have to disprove God exists in order to lack a positive belief that God does exist. As an analogy, a defendant does not have to prove he is innocent. Instead, it is the claim of guilt that has to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
It was an example, perhaps bad example, of how dismissal is not a replacement for discussion.
And if someone is into PHILO… the man, not the topic… maybe he would be Old Testament too?
Atheists have no clue what you are talking about. I do because I am a believer, but they don’t. All they know is that they do not discern him. And since you are incorrect in saying God does not hide (Scripture says he does), his ‘hidden-ness’ then becomes the only thing that would even remotely make him a possibility in their view of things. And it is precisely that possibility that they must deal with.
Cleverly worded, but misses the point. What you must do is to disprove the possibility of God.
Why? I don’t have to disprove the possibility of a defendant being guilty in order to find him not guilty.
Since atheism is about my own beliefs, where exactly is the problem? I am not telling you what you should or shouldn’t believe. I can only explain to you why I am not convinced by the arguments I have heard for the existence of God, and the overall lack of evidence I have found for the existence of God.
OK, I am apparently too much mired in positivism to understand the Plantinga link you gave me. For example:
I would say that there’s copious empirical evidence for the existence of other minds. And if we admit that, Plantinga’s argument collapses. So what am I missing here?
So am I to understand that you concede the possibility of God?
Absolutely. I am fallible, and I am certainly not omniscient. Leprechauns, fairies, and bigfoot are also possible, but I bet you don’t believe in them, nor do you think you should have to disprove their existence in order to justify your disbelief.
Then you also concede the possibility that God is exactly the God described in the Bible. You actually have no other choice at this point.
How have you ruled out the possibility that other people just appear to have minds, but are not actually conscious beings?
Do you also concede the possibility that God is exactly the God described in every other religion? It would seem that you have no other choice at this point.