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Error #1: All Religion is Similarly Irrational
  1. Atheist fallacies (installment #1)
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This is not some vague analogy, it is the literal truth.

Atheist fallacies (installment #1)

If you deny that the genetic code is a language in the most literal sense, then you are in denial of science. Game over. No, there is no appeal to authority here. The citation of authorities is a routine part of rational discourse. If you doubt me, just check absolutely any scientific or scholarly journal. The logical fallacy of Appeal to Authority only occurs when a person argues that something must be true merely because an authority says so.

Please recall that, if Chuckles the Clown argued that the earth is round, he would still be right, even though he is just a silly clown who once flunked out of clown school. Similarly, if the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un argued that the earth is round, he would still be right, even though he is an evil dictator who lies a lot. If I missed it which is unlikely would you please point it out to me. Be specific.

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If you refuse to logically engage with the evidence which I present, that is fine. In the primary text on the application of algorithmic information theory to the question of the origin of life, titled Information Theory, Evolution, and The Origin of Life , physicist and information scientist Hubert Yockey explains this crucial point:. It has occurred to me lately—I must confess with some shock at first to my scientific sensibilities—that both questions [the origin of mind and the origin of life from nonliving matter] might be brought into some degree of congruence.

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I want to get to the Bible verses as we had agreed earlier but I want to out that hold on first. The fatal flaw with Mr. With a chemistry experiment involving a bunsen burner and test tubes? With a biology experiment involving a microscope and a petri-dish, perhaps? The metaphysical is the metaphysical precisely because it lies beyond the realm of physical data. Please note that science only deals with one level of causation…. Science does not even address ultimate causes.


Meta-scientific interpretation is necessary in order to determine the ultimate cause for such things as the origin of the universe and the origin of life. Jump is confusing and conflating science with ontology, in the same manner that so many atheists so often do. There is a crucial distinction between scientific observation and experimentation, on one hand, and the interpretation of those observations and experiments, on the other hand.

Data in isolation does not provide any explanation. Only human interpretation of data can provide explanations. Roy A. Varghese brilliantly elaborates in The Wonder of the World :. If we ask what are the laws that govern the universe, we are asking a scientific question. If we ask why does a structure of laws exist, we are asking an ontological question. The data of science can, of course, serve as the starting-point for ontological study but that study will require ontological and not scientific tools.

All of these mental acts are ontological judgements. Views about whether any intelligence exists outside nature are interpretations, not data, hence belong to a different sphere of reasoning than purely empirical scientific expertise confers. Yet science as science in the strictest sense proceeds inductively, accumulating finite bodies of information and constructing patterns. The interpretation that structures the information, by contrast, is ultimately meta-scientific.

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Even moving to the meta-scientific level may presuppose an intelligence that exceeds pure, random naturalism. As an example, Jeff, consider the meta-scientific question of why material things so consistently follow natural laws such as the laws of physics, chemistry, and thermodynamics. As Robert Boyle, the founder of modern chemistry, put it:. Or, as the knighted mathematician, physicist and astronomer Sir James Jeans put it in his book The Mysterious Universe :.

Mind no longer appears as an accidental intruder into the realm of matter. We are beginning to suspect that we ought rather to hail mind as the creator and governor of the realm of matter. Rather, it results from an ideological presupposition absent of any logical analysis. Hey Scott, this was a quick reply. Well my good sir, as a collection of water, calcium, and organic molecules.

You are definitely doing a good job. Because many of the people using this tactic are fundies they often have a loose understanding of modern science. This produces an interesting phenomenon where the person trying to discredit science refers to a scientific principle that is well understood. A famous example of this is Bill O'Reilly 's declaration that ocean tides were an unexplained phenomenon, implying the Almighty willed the oceans to move. Another less famous, but still incredibly hilarious example comes from one of SpiritScience 's videos.

When confronted with questions about a global flood, even seemingly rational people will resort to God of the Gaps with hidden under flowery language. For instance, one might ask, "How did Noah suddenly have advanced knowledge of calculus to build such a ship? And how did Noah even manage to lift beams that must have been bigger than Along those same lines, it wasn't that Noah learned calculus, it was just that he was following God's instructions". Clearly a solid argument to explain valid arguments against the Flood.

For anyone switching to creationism because of the God of the Gaps argument, God would be. This is why the argument does not work. The election booth for the RationalWiki Moderator Election is now open. Cast your votes today! Jump to: navigation , search. Brick by brick, century by century, with occasional burps and hiccups, the wall of superstition has been coming down.

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Science and medicine and political philosophy have been on a relentless march in one direction only — sometimes slow, sometimes at a gallop, but never reversing course. Never has an empirical scientific discovery been deemed wrong and replaced by a more convincing mystical explanation.

I've examined the pancreas of a diabetic dog , and darned if it's NOT an insulin deficiency, but a little evil goblin dwelling inside. And he seems really pissed! That one took five millennia, but fall it did. See the main article on this topic: Argumentum ad nauseam. See the main article on this topic: Appeal to omniscience. Our ignorance is God; what we know is science. But I believe that someday we will understand what causes epilepsy, and at that moment, we will cease to believe that it's divine. And so it is with everything in the universe.

If in fact the frontiers of knowledge are being pushed further and further back and that is bound to be the case , then God is being pushed back with them, and is therefore continually in retreat. We are to find God in what we know, not in what we don't know. Is that how you want to play this game? Religion comes from the period of human prehistory where nobody — not even the mighty Democritus who concluded that all matter was made from atoms — had the smallest idea what was going on.