“If someone doesn’t value evidence then what evidence can you give them to change their mind? If someone doesn’t value logic then what argument can you persuade them with?”
There’s a story in the news this morning about a guy who claims to be the second coming of Jesus Christ…..
Now I could go on about the burden of proof and rip his story apart in all sorts of ways but what would be the point? This story only proves that there is no story so outlandish that you can’t find some people to believe in it. In fact the only problem he has is that a world of 6 Billion people he hasn’t, so far, found that many but give it time and some mass media exposure and he’ll be set for life.
This kind of thing is a prime example of why I have given up arguing with the faithful like this guy who I was arguing with last week about scripture…..
In this guy’s opinion the only thing that would make the story above more convincing is to wait until 100 years after he’s dead then get dozens of people who didn’t know him to write down a 3rd or 4th hand version of the story then get 47 translators to amalgamate them into 4 differing accounts of the story! Now it becomes believable! Obviously such things are only believable to people who start with a belief in God and then try to fit the facts around that as best they can. This is why I have now embraced APATHEISM because I only have one life to live and I haven’t got the time to waste worrying about the beliefs of others. I can only trust in my gut feeling that in the great bell curve of belief the vast majority of people are similarly apatheistic and merely going along with whatever social flow they have been born into. I have reason to believe this…..
I had a little Twitter conversation with my favourite man of the cloth Rev Richard Coles a few weeks ago…..
I was having a little crisis of confidence in some of my fellow online non-believers. He, surprisingly, admitted to me that, like myself, he swings back and forth between apathy and antipathy towards Religion. It struck me as interesting that a man of the cloth could adopt a position so close to that of myself who has never believed in God. It made me wonder about all sorts of things. To what extent are the labels we put on ourselves decided before we justify them? Optimist or pessimist? believer or non-believer. In other words do Scientists make good Atheists or vice versa? I have observed that most Religious people seldom have any interest in rational reasons for their beliefs but rather their world-view seems to be developed out of an emotional response to Bach, or Titian or the beauty of the natural world and they mostly choose to set aside reason. Francis Collins famously set his rational mind aside after seeing a beautiful waterfall. Others have failed to comprehend how the natural world could exist without a creator and thus have concluded that God must exist. I have a lot of sympathy for these kind of views and generally these kind of believers are nice, genuine people who truly cannot, or don’t wish to, understand a creation without a creator. They are probably as perplexed by me as i am by them. Some have gone as far as being ordained despite their doubts because, i guess, they have weighed everything up and concluded that the fruits of their endeavour are their own reward. The ones to worry about are the ones who insist that Religion is rational and their Holy books are the word of God etc despite evidence. It is one thing to be concerned with matters eternal but it is something else to to claim rational reasons for doing so.