I’m listening to the infamous William Lane Craig vs Christopher Hitchens “Does God Exist” debate, and I was reminded of Carl Sagan’s clear and simple (opening) statements of how pointless the cosmological / cosmogenetic first-cause “something from nothing” argument is as a basis for a “creator”. Craig leads off on this – before going off on a misunderstood summary of “fine-tuning” arguments against coincidence and improbability.
The theist is concerned primarily with “objectivity” and “evidence” of “great facts” – Jeez – yet says we mustn’t focus on “external arguments” for our individual beliefs and inner voices – Jeez. And shameless strawmen like “atheists say there is nothing wrong with rape” etc. Why am I listening to this ? (Just interested in why so many evangelical theists see Hitchens as having been slaughtered in this debate … 2 hours of it … but all the standard rehearsed arguments and tricks from the theist side so far.)
And lo and behold, Hitch leads off on the irony of the theist using “scientistic” arguments, physics and cosmology that could never have been available to the original prophets. Retrospective evidentialism – infinitely updatable hindsight – not worth arguing against. If that’s your argument, you win the undisprovable pointless point. And eventually we get to first cause … see above.
Interesting that the riposte is basically agnosticism vs atheism. The “meta-why” argument. Why would you want “proof” – what would “proof” look like anyway ? It’s why I say non-theist. (Oooh, Craig also suggests non-theism.) Too important to be agnostic (evasive), too sceptical to expect proof – just balance of rational argument needed to “explain”. The wrong argument(s) – a non-debate.
The ubiquitous golden rule. Human solidarity.