January 2012
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Elgin’s Books


  • Christianity and Secularism

  • Evidence for the Bible


  • Science, Religion, and Naturalism, continued

    Paul L. LaClair’s post is here. His comments are in blue

    Paul,

    In relation to your claim that my argument involves consciousness you said:

    “Yes it does. It has to, if you’re going to offer an apologetic for theism, as Plantinga does.”

    While, an argument for theism would involve a concept of consciousness, I was not making an argument for theism. Look at the conclusion of my argument it does not mention God. I put forth an argument that demonstrated a key, and I believe fatal, flaw in the claims of naturalism.  While this could be a first step towards building an argument for theism, it is not itself an argument for theism as many other steps would be necessary.  Thus it does not involve consciousness, and your claim that “it has to” is again simply in error.  But while not sufficient to demonstrate theism, it is more than sufficient to refute naturalism, which was the point I was making.

    I find this to be a common problem among non-theists; they always want to jump to the conclusion of god, and then claim there is no evidence.  Any attempt to demonstrate the problems with their thinking or any attempt to build towards theism that involves a multi-step argument is effectively rejected, seemingly regardless of the soundness of the individual steps.  Arguments are evaluated not on their merits, but on whether they could lend support to theistic claims.

    For many non-theists, arguments such as the one I put forth are really crucial, because much of their rejection of theism is based either formally or informally on the concept that the natural world is the only thing that exists, or at least is the only thing that we can know about.  During the latter part of the 20th century, such views became increasingly untenable, which is why theism is once again under serious discussion.

    So my argument still stands, and still refutes the claims of naturalism.

    In relation to my pointing to the historical role of the Judeo-Christian world view as a refutation of your claim that theistic thinking had retarded scientific progress you replied simply,

    “You seem to have met yourself coming ’round the barn.”

    Sorry, but it is not at all clear what your point is, or even the relationship of this statement to my refutation of your claim, and as such it hardly refutes what I said.  Perhaps you could clarify your argument.

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