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← Refuting supernatural

jay29's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by jay29

Jos Gibson writes: Please start writing multi-responses as single posts; racking up our post number leads us to start new pages unnecessarily soon, harming navigation.

I have no problem with this request as the number of responses is indeed increasing at an alarming rate- soon it will be more than I have time for.

Science clearly does have limits in the sense that there are matters which it cannot investigate.

Why is that clear? Give an example of something it clearly can't investigate & say why that's clearly so.

Well, I gave an example already: science cannot determine whether God exists or not. Why? Because one cannot specify, even in principle, an experiment whereby His existence/non-existence could be determined.

Which things that don't exist in spacetime do you nonetheless contend exist?

One example would be mathematical entities such as numbers. Many (perhaps even a majority) of mathematicians adhere to such mathematical Platonism.

his claim is clearly self-undermining. To see why consider the (your) claim "that a claim is unevidenced is a reason why to believe it is irrational" Now since there is no evidence for this claim on your own account it is irrational and we ought not to believe it!

I wish you'd stop saying "clearly"; it doesn't add to your case, but it does mean your case needs to prove more, since "X is clearly true" is stronger than "X is true". Anyway, I can give evidence it's irrational to believe that which is unevidenced; by definition evidence for X is a route by which the truth of X leads to its acceptance, so to believe that which is unevidenced is to believe without the belief's truth (if any) being the cause of that belief, which means there's no indication the belief is true. But by definition, a belief is a belief about what is true, making it irrational to have a belief without an indication that it is true. (In this case, the reason that argument counts as evidence for its conclusion is because it is the route by which the conclusion was reached, in which the conclusion's truth led to its being deduced. Thus, sound arguments are by definition evidence for their conclusions.)

I’m not clear what you are saying here, but in any case that does not matter since I have (above) provided a demonstration that your claim that (“that a claim is unevidenced is a reason why to believe it is irrational") is, on your criterion, itself irrational and therefor ought not to be believed.

Look: are you going to discuss specific examples of supernatural claims you entertain or not? This is the whole point I was making in my first post on this thread; anyone who entertains the supernatural entertains some specific supernatural thing, which they're wrong to do if that specific thing isn't suitably evidenced - so let's jump into that discussion right away. Of course, you've already said you don't accept that evidence is needed to get conclusions. What pray tell would warrant a conclusion?!

A sound argument (i.e. one which has true premises and is deductively valid) would “warrant” a conclusion; such arguments are truth preserving.

Fri, 13 Jul 2012 20:52:51 UTC | #949110