Friday, August 1, 2008

God and Logic (III)

Well, we are getting somewhere. For example, Sye has given up using these strategies:

(i) insisting that all atheists are crude reductive materialists.
(ii) Telling us we can’t fault his arguments logically because, as atheists, we are not entitled to use logic.

Sye, you have just stopped doing these things because I have, very patiently, I feel, explained why you are not justified in doing so. But you have not been gracious enough to acknowledge any error on your own part, or that I was right to pick you up on these things. You’ve just quietly dropped them. Oh well. It's still progress.

We have also made progress on the actual debate we are supposed to be having, which is: does the argument on your website constitute a proof? As I point out in my preceding post, you have now (perhaps unintentionally?) conceded your argument does just presuppose that the laws of logic cannot exist without God.

But then you have conceded it fails as a proof, surely. Hoorah!

All that’s now left to tie up is your challenge to atheists to account for the laws of logic, and loads of other things too, on an atheist world view.

Tell you what – I will continue with your challenge to “account for” the laws of logic on an atheist world view if you take my “evil God challenge” and explain why belief in the Christian God is any more reasonable the belief in the evil deity I discuss in “The God of Eth”.

Go here.

One thing, before we pursue logic and God, though. You keep switching questions. I said you were pushing two questions:

1. How are objective laws of logic possible in the absence of the Christian God?
2. How can we justify the laws of logic?

The first question is a metaphysical question; the second an epistemological question.

You will remember you said you wanted me to focus on 1, not 2 (because, I guess, you recognised you were going to have problems with 2). But in your previous reply (to God and Logic II) you try and get yourself off the hook by switching back from 1 to 2 (you say: “how can you know whether anything is universal?”) So which one are we addressing – 1, 2 or both together?

5 comments:

Sye TenB said...

Stephen Law said:

”Well, we are getting somewhere. For example, Sye has given up using these strategies:

(i) insisting that all atheists are crude reductive materialists.”


Stephen, up till now, you have been relatively honest in your debating technique, but I take exception to your straw-man tactics here. Where have I ever said, let alone insisted that all atheists are crude materialists???

”(ii) Telling us we can’t fault his arguments logically because, as atheists, we are not entitled to use logic.”

Again, I am simply asking you to justify the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic you are trying to employ against my arguments.

”Sye, you have just stopped doing these things because I have, very patiently, I feel, explained why you are not justified in doing so. But you have not been gracious enough to acknowledge any error on your own part, or that I was right to pick you up on these things. You’ve just quietly dropped them. Oh well. It's still progress.”

If you find anywhere that I have ever said, or insisted that all atheists are crude reductive materialists, I will gladly apologize, but if you cannot, it is you who owes the apology. Also I have never said that athesits cannot use logic, in fact on my site I clearly state that atheists do in fact prove things, they just cannot account for the very concept of proof. Atheists can, and do use logic, but in order to use it against my position you’d think you’d be obliged to tell us how the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic make sense in YOUR worldview.

”We have also made progress on the actual debate we are supposed to be having, which is: does the argument on your website constitute a proof? As I point out in my preceding post, you have now (perhaps unintentionally?) conceded your argument does just presuppose that the laws of logic cannot exist without God.”

Of course it does, just as you presuppose that the laws of logic CAN exist without God. That, in itself does not invalidate the proof, what we must determine is whose worldview is consistent with those presuppositions. You see Stephen if I asked you to prove that the laws of logic can exist without God (which I have done on numerous occasions), ANY proof that you offer will have the presuppositon that the laws of logic can exist without God.

”But then you have conceded it fails as a proof, surely. Hoorah!”

Um nope. Prove to me that the laws of logic can exist without God WITHOUT presupposing that the laws of logic can exist without God.

All that’s now left to tie up is your challenge to atheists to account for the laws of logic, and loads of other things too, on an atheist world view.”

At last!

”Tell you what – I will continue with your challenge to “account for” the laws of logic on an atheist world view if you take my “evil God challenge” and explain why belief in the Christian God is any more reasonable the belief in the evil deity I discuss in “The God of Eth”.

Sorry, that article is far too long for me to take take the time to do it justice. Surely though, the amount of time I have spent here warrants an answer to my question. Let’s just say this though, in a world without God, the very concept of ‘evil’ is meaningless. Without an absolute standard of good and evil, there is no evil, there is only personal preference.

”You will remember you said you wanted me to focus on 1, not 2 (because, I guess, you recognised you were going to have problems with 2). But in your previous reply (to God and Logic II) you try and get yourself off the hook by switching back from 1 to 2 (you say: “how can you know whether anything is universal?”) So which one are we addressing – 1, 2 or both together?”

Well, I’d really like you to answer both, but at this point I’d be happy with either.

Cheers,

Sye

Nick said...

Sye,

You have repeatedly made the assertion that only your worldview accounts for logic, but we're still waiting for your sound logical argument to justify this assertion. Do you have one or not? If so, please do tell, as we're all very eager to hear it...

Anonymous said...

Um nope. Prove to me that the laws of logic can exist without God WITHOUT presupposing that the laws of logic can exist without God.

Prove that the laws of logic can only exist with god WITHOUT presupposing that the laws of logic can only exist with god.

You imply that the atheist worldview is crude materialism. You imply it by asserting every time that logic is abstract. Now do not pretend this insistence is not there to show that the atheist worldview "cannot account for abstract entities." Be honest for once.

James F. Elliott said...

Sye,

Please prove how, having "proved" that there is a God, it is the Christian God.

Anders said...

I found you're blog and read through the post and the comments.

Please read a blog post in the left menu at bloganders.blogspot.com that contains a proof of the existence of an Intelligent and Perfect Creator (of the universe).