Saturday, February 21, 2009

A Concise Refutation of Materialist Atheism

Scientific-evidence based arguments for the non-existence (or the existence) of God are essentially incoherent. To explore this, one must ask, “What is science?” What does science really do? Science is, briefly put, correlation of data to a model. It asks: how well does this particular model follow the data and the evidence collected?

What is the assumption here? One clearly must have data. What does the collection of data assume? It assumes a material existent. Science cannot work with anything that is not a material existent. Thus, the pop atheist books now in circulation that use the argument, “There is no scientific evidence for the existence of God” are clearly offering an irrational argument. Science assumes material data. To apply its methods and argumentation to a deity question is to have a fundamental misunderstanding of what science is.

Also, the problem of universals shows that there are indeed non-material existents. Most or all of math is a non-material existent. One cannot find math anywhere as a physical object. Thus, one must accept the existence of non-material existents, unless one wishes to claim that mathematics does not exist. One knows that the number two really exists, but where is it? Two tables before me and two chairs behind me both use the exact same existent “two.” However, can we point physically to this number two? No, it is a non-material existent, as are most or all universals. Thus, one cannot reasonably claim that there is no such thing as a non-material existent. This opens us up to another realm where there are things that are real, and exist, apart from physical phenomena, such as mathematics and consciousness.

Thus, the evidence based atheist who says there is no evidence for God, and therefore, he does not exist is using an invalid method for the debate. One cannot use any purely material based approach to the question of a non-material existent, such as God.

Therefore, any scientifically based argument in a discussion for the existence of God is clearly irrational, and invalid. Science assumes material phenomenon for applications of any of its methods.

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A lot of confusion among materialist scientists is perhaps a misunderstanding of the philosophical basis of the methods they practice. The correlating of evidence to fit a model usually is the application of this data to a mathematical model. And, one does not perform science without mathematics, or some abstract model. And, it seems that a materialist scientist should accept the reality of mathematics, since they necessarily use it. Thus, they accept material evidence (data) and determine how close this data correlates to the non-material models, usually mathematical.

Perhaps they do admit mathematical realities, or, perhaps they do not think about the issue at all, simply performing their work habitually without understanding philosophically what is going on. So, when the arguments for the existence of God are examined, the materialist, I suspect in some ignorance, asks the wrong questions, out of habit, not taking the effort of examining, and thereby understanding, the valid applications of their habitual method. Since the methods they use give them consistent results and a high confidence in its validity for what they do every day, they make an incorrect assumption that it applies to some philosophical questions. In many cases, this confidence turns into arrogance, which in turn explains some of the recklessness when a materialist glibly applies the method to non-material questions.

I also suspect that when a philosophically astute challenger points out these obvious errors of materialism, the materialist suddenly feels exposed and naked, since his previously unassailable method has been shown useless (for some questions) with arguments he has never thought about before. And, a scientist usually does not take very well to exposure that his previously reliable intellectual approach, (and often by implication his reputation of being “smart”) is shattered so easily. I think a lot of the materialist evasion after being challenged effectively is a turning away on their part to the truth shown in the argument coming from from a fear of looking directly at the issue, because an entire world-view will be shattered for them, in many cases.



Lutherius
President
Association of Former Pentecostals

14 comments:

Anonymous said...
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libresansdieu said...

You are assuming that there is something else than material data on which an argument for the existence of God could be based on. By doing so you open the door to irrational arguments. The existence of God needs to be demonstrated within reason, not in a magic world someone just made up.

Lutherius said...

libresansdieu,

Thank you very much for your participation on this blog.

No. There is no argument in this post that argues FOR the existence of God. So, I will have to ask you: Where did you get that idea?

You claim that something other than non-material data as the basis of an argument opens the door to irrational arguments. Are you familiar with the Problem of Universals? This is a 2000 year old philosophical problem. Yes, there are non-material existents, and yes, they are real. If anyone does not accept this last statement as true, then they MUST deny the entire reality of the branch of Mathematics, which is non-material. All the numbers are non-material. You cannot point in space to the square root of two, because it is not a material existent, and neither is any other number.

Now, you may be bold enough to say that there is no such thing as a non-material existent. However, once you make this statement, you must deny the reality of mathematics. Now, is that rational or irrational?

You mention in your last statement again about the existence of God. The blog post is not about the existence of God. The blog post is about Materialistic Atheism, not about the existence of God.

Materialistic Atheism is false. There are no arguments to support it. Why? Because materialistic atheism assumes that only material existents are real. This is false, since we know that there is such a thing as mathematics.

Since most atheists use this materialist argument, they are supporting a logical error. However, there are other people who do not believe in God who do not use the materialist argument, usually because they know better.

Here is the core point of my proposition: There is no rational or logical basis to believe in any form of Materialistic Atheism.

Here is my second proposition: There is no argument available anywhere to support Materialist Atheism.

Here is my final statement: Materialist Atheism is illogical, irrational, and completely false.

Libresansdieu, I challenge you to propose ANY coherent argument FOR Materialist Atheism.

Good luck, and thanks a lot for your post.

JPI

Laestadian said...

I think you made a pretty good argument, but how do you relate to creationism?

See my video about creationism by clicking on my Nick.

It's Me Victoria! said...

Our church is inside our hearts

Micah Escobedo said...

I've grown up, not in the Oneness Pentecostal tradition, but in the Charismatic tradition: The practices are mostly the same.

For about a year now (I'm 20), I've been removing myself from that odd sub-culture of Christianity and if there's one thing I can say about the process, it's that it's freeing... I feel like I'm discovering who I truly am and not who I've been told I am the past two decades of my life.

Keep up the great work! :)

The Celtic Chimp said...

I tried commenting here but go annoyed at the word limit, so I responded on my own (now mostly defunct) blog.

If your are interested the post is here http://celticchimp.blogspot.com/2010/07/response-to-concise-refutation-of.html

Luke said...

Can you please clarify - I am a scientist and have never heard of this 'material' type of data you speak of

Most data I deal with has no material connection whatsoever.

Champlain said...

If it has no material connection, then it is not physical science. Perhaps you are doing math or even philosophy.

Luke said...

This is very interesting. I thought the scientific method was the scientific method. I didnt realise science was divided so clearly into physical science and ... what exactly? Please clarify

Champlain said...

Luke, think about what you are saying. You said that what you do often does not have a material (physical) connection. Physical science studies physical phenomena. Now, I asserted that if you are dealing with things without an ultimate physical connection, you are not doing physical science. I think this is pretty clear, straightforward, and unambiguous.

Sextus Empiricus said...

Wow, talk about straw men.

There is no burden of proof upon atheists to prove the non-existence of God. The burden of proof rests upon those who assert his existence.

Since they are unable to do so, we can state with confidence that God does not exist.

Forcing the argument into the realm of inductive reasoning, where it is impossible to prove a negative, is just as equally intellectual dishonesty.

Freddy Martini said...

Sextus, You are free to make your case. So do it. Or perhaps you cannot. Well, I know you cannot, but you can try. Go ahead!

Freddy Martini said...

Actually, in Inductive Reasoning, it is impossible to prove a POSITIVE. See my provocative post here:

http://crackingthecodeonphilosophy.blogspot.com/2014/09/the-problem-of-induction-why-science-is.html