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The fallacy of no proof equals proof

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posted on May, 18 2008 @ 09:09 PM
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That's why I consider myself to be an Apatheist: There may or may not be a God, but I just don't give a damn.




posted on May, 18 2008 @ 09:48 PM
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i've said this before but atheism is a lack of belief in a god or gods. meaning it's just not there at all. usually atheists don't give god much thought until of course a believer brings it up.

what i don't understand is why people of faith need to get all up in arms about atheists at all. isnt the whole concept of "faith" that YOU believe? are you constantly feeling like your "Faith" is being tested by them or maybe you personally aren't sure?



posted on May, 18 2008 @ 09:48 PM
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I suppose you could liken this situation to the legal system of 'innocent until proven guilty'. The religious people are the ones trying to prove their point, not non-religious folk. Take these examples;

Say if I came to ATS and posted a story how I have met an alien race and they told me to pass on a whole lot of knowledge that I had to make the world's population believe. I would have to be the one who is to prove my point not the people who come and post in my topic and say give me proof.

I have my own beliefs, my beliefs are not any of those that any church on earth represent or worship. To be put simply I believe in a 'creator', you can't deny that something created what is all around us. I just don't believe that any of the world's religions have hit the spot on our true origins. So one may ask me to prove my beliefs and to be honest I cannot prove my beliefs however I am not going around the world trying to convince the world into believing what I believe and I don't care if you believe me or not.

Catch my drift ?



posted on May, 18 2008 @ 09:53 PM
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I dont understand the point of debating if there is a god or not...Truly people won't know until they go- and even then the answer will never be shared...It's an ongoing battle. Individual beliefs should stay with that person- not passed along to others or forced in most cases.

My point being...let atheists believe god doesn't exist and followers of god believe he does- there will always be a balance of belief and non-belief...

Just like the beatles song..."Let it be"



posted on May, 18 2008 @ 10:01 PM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


Then what is your proof for God?

You cant tell atheists not to argue against God because they have no proof, and then argue for God with the same amount of proof, none at all.

It's illogical to do so.

[edit on 18-5-2008 by Devilock]

[edit on 18-5-2008 by Devilock]



posted on May, 18 2008 @ 10:42 PM
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Originally posted by garyo1954


But in fairness and honesty, if one believes there is no God, there must be some reasonable proof, beyond the rhetoric "God doesn't exist," that causes them to disbelieve.

Is there anything beside rhetoric to discredit the possibility?




Well, it depends on to what degree a logical assumption requires proof. After all, when referring to God, I assume that you mean an intelligent, non-human being of some sort that possesses great power. But as far as we know, humans are the only intelligent species(to the extent that they can consciously manipulate nature in complex ways) that have ever existed.

Doesn't that count for something? I mean, it's a bit like saying that granite doesn't think. Now I don't know for an absolute fact that granite doesn't think, but I make a reasonable assumption that it doesn't because I only see evidence that biological organisms think.

If someone wrote a book stating that granite has complex thoughts, how can I disprove that beyond a reasonable doubt? It might be very difficult to disprove such a notion to those who've accepted the existence of sentient granite in a religious context. But please remember: It is not difficult to write a book stating the existence of sentient granite. Especially if such a book is not required to provide any evidence of its claims.



[edit on 18-5-2008 by Flatwoods]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 01:42 AM
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Originally posted by Devilock
reply to post by garyo1954
 


Then what is your proof for God?


God is a time traveller and he work in mysterious ways. It's all about language really, to understand the hidden meaning of Words and sentances. If you comprehend the system and is rightious before God anything you ask for will become reality. But it's not for everyone. With no spirit you can't hear. And for every good thing you do, a bad thing will happen. May God grant you insight into the wisdom of language with hidden mysteries. God has awakened someone and he calls all his childen home. He who knows what is kept from even the wisest can change the world and make the Kingdom of God grow in strength and wisdom.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 04:46 AM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


1: i posted the entire sentence, even though it was in parts. i didn't change the meaning

2: you failed to address the logical inconsistency i pointed out and merely asked me to delete or edit my post, not to mention the u2u you sent me asking me if i had gotten my anger out...



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 05:16 AM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


My understanding is that Athiests do not believe in God (actual disbelief), while Agnostics remain undecided.

To me the 'yet to be convinced' argument is a bit lazy, especially if accompanied by a demand for scientific proof of some kind. Who waits for scientists to prove something before you make up your mind?

Religion appeals to intuition and personal experience and requires a personal judgement. I doubt anyone will be able to prove the existence of God in a double blind test!

Atheism on the other hand (assuming it means what I understand it to mean) is a postive statement of the non-existance of God and accordingly requires at least some evidence or rationale to justify it.

I personally have no problem in disbelieving in the Christian God, as a kind of old man in the sky looking down from heaven. He is too exclusive and childish to make sense to anyone who looks beyond their back fence.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 11:55 AM
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Originally posted by Devilock
reply to post by garyo1954
 



You cant tell atheists not to argue against God because they have no proof, and then argue for God with the same amount of proof, none at all.



BINGO! Now you're thinking!

This is something that no one has mentioned! In other words, this whole set of ideas goes both way!

You can no more say 'there is no God because there is no God because God doesn't exist' than you can 'there is a God because there is a God because God exists.'

Of course, you don't see believers making this claim. If you search the many religious forums you'll find their proof is mostly personal testimony.

Of course, we know atheists do not have personal testimony.

Now, the purpose of this thread is not whether there is or is not a God, but to establish the reality that a statement of fact requires proof.

One can believe as they wish with regards to anything, but when one makes a statement of fact, then evidence is required.

2+2=4 is not proved by 'Ms Bristol told me so in third grade.' That is not evidence. That is a statement that can be proved or disproved once we establish the meaning behind the symbols.

Whether there is a God or not does not matter in this thread. That is not the issue here. The question is:

Why do atheists claim a free pass from providing evidence when they make the statement 'There is no God?'

Thanks for the excellent thoughts Devilock!



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 12:02 PM
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Originally posted by ElusiveGoddess
reply to post by garyo1954
 


Atheism on the other hand (assuming it means what I understand it to mean) is a postive statement of the non-existance of God and accordingly requires at least some evidence or rationale to justify it.



Exactly put! I should have consulted you before starting this post. Your explanation is much better than mine!

And I agree it makes no difference whether one believes or not. And the actual existence is not at issue here as you pointed out.

We go back to Carl Sagan, don't we?
(Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.)

Thanks ElusiveGoddess for your input! You've helped get us back on track!



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 01:55 PM
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sent by garyo1954 via u2u
You didn't address the points.


the points were few and far between and were mostly based off of a flawed premise. if someone says the sky is orange and then makes a deduction from there, you attack the premise that the sky is orange instead of the points themselves.



You simply showed how little you understood about logic. Well, no you showed the proper use of third grade logic. It's so because Ms Bristol told me doesn't work for adults, though.


if you could demonstrate how i have an elementary school level of logic instead of just using a caustic attack tactic, i'd be ready to address this point.



Got anything of substance as to why atheists get a free pass on evidence?


because we're not the ones that started the argument by saying "god doesn't exist"
in fact, most of us simply say that we don't believe in god because there's a lack of proof

a good argument for why we don't have to provide proof was proposed by Russell in the form of his infamous teapot.


If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes. But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is an intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age or of the Inquisitor in an earlier time.


now, is it the burden of proof on the a-teapotist or on the teapotist?



Probably not, since you can't think past your idea of win/lose.


...now you're psychoanalyzing me?



Sad to say, you can't understand the post so there is no possibility of any dialog.


i understand that it's fairly nonsensical and actually cites a false stereotype of atheists (the whole part where we state that there is no god instead of passively disbelieving in a concept that hasn't been proven)



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:32 PM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


Why is it when someone agrees you think they're absolutely great and when someone disagrees you insult them, basically insinuate they're ignorant or simply unable to understand? Lots of people here are perfectly able to understand you they just happen to think you're wrong. You're so condescending it's breath taking, and by the way, there is no such thing as 3rd grade logic. there is logic and there is non logic, simple and clear. There is only one logic, wheres spock then you need him!

I'm not an atheist but i know a fair few and let me tell you something, lots of them don't say "there is no god", they just say "they don't believe in god". There is a difference there, although it's subtle. What they're asking for is evidence before they start worshipping a being they cannot see, feel, hear etc. They however are not all saying there is no possibility of a god existing.

Some atheists on the other hand do take a very "god does not exist" approach, maybe we should seperate these two groups into athiests and extreme atheists.



[edit on 19-5-2008 by ImaginaryReality1984]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 02:46 PM
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Originally posted by ImaginaryReality1984
reply to post by garyo1954
 


Why is it when someone agrees you think they're absolutely great and when someone disagrees you insult them, basically insinuate they're ignorant or simply unable to understand? Lots of people here are perfectly able to understand you they just happen to think you're wrong. You're so condescending it's breath taking, and by the way, there is no such thing as 3rd grade logic. there is logic and there is non logic, simple and clear. There is only one logic, wheres spock then you need him!

I'm not an atheist but i know a fair few and let me tell you something, lots of them don't say "there is no god", they just say "they don't believe in god". There is a difference there, although it's subtle. What they're asking for is evidence before they start worshipping a being they cannot see, feel, hear etc. They however are not all saying there is no possibility of a god existing.

[edit on 19-5-2008 by ImaginaryReality1984]


I applaud those who understand what the point of this thread is and offers something that furthers the thinking about it.

And I should. It is a great feeling when I read a reply and recognize the poster has made a contribution that furthers this topic.

Should someone offer a differing view, that addresses the question(s) I have posed, I would applaud them as well.

I'm impartial as to what is said, but I am not deviating from the topic and allowing it to become a yes/no argument about existence/nonexistence.

Thank you for asking that. I'm sure other readers had the same idea.
I will try to be less partial from this point forward.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 03:01 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
i'm sorry, but i have to point out how you're failing at logical consistency.


Is this a caustic attack?

Now, if it upsets you that I responded in the same manner that you addressed me, then I suppose we are even?

If you want me to address the rest of your post, please stay on topic.

Your belief is not at issue.
I accept that.

I do not accept your entrance with some rude, uncalled for comment that has nothing to do with the issue. You will receive the same respect you show.

And you showed none. So how much show you receive?

I will read and consider your other posts and get back to you.

Thanks.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 03:33 PM
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I have to chuckle every time I read 'absolute proof here' or 'prove this wrong there'.
If I said I saw a pink elephant ufo yesterday prove me wrong. It would be easily possible and probable that there is massive data to show no one has ever seen a pink elephant ufo, reptitlian, sasquatc, God, etc. Asking for absolute proof is like producing hen's teeth. It's just not possible in this venue. Only in a lab with consistently verifiable results. Unless. dare I say, some people have 'faith' in certain things.



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 03:37 PM
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reply to post by madnessinmysoul
 


The burden of proof is on the one making the claim. I agree. Now would you agree that one who is saying 'There is no orange sky' should offer proof?

The same is true with the teapot. Would you agree that no matter how outrageous a claim, evidence should be expected to prove or disprove that claim?

Or does one just say 'it can't be true, because it is too outrageous to be true?' See the problem, there?

Too, it would seem the more outrageous the claim, the easier it would be to disprove. And that means, I can't agree that 'logic' is used when one claims something to be false merely by the fact that is 'outrageous.'

We question these ideas with the intent of proving or disproving. Otherwise we become sheep and say 'I believe 2+2=4 because Ms Bristol told me so in 3rd grade.'

Now, the purpose of this thread is not whether there is or is not a God, but to establish the reality that a statement of fact requires proof.

When one makes a claim, as you showed, one should offer proof of that claimed. I agree with you.

That it might be outrageous, beyond belief, unheard of, or just out of this world, has no bearing (outside personal belief), as to it being true or not.

Would you agree?



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 06:05 PM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


Well that's the point i've been making all along as an agnostic. You cannot disprove ANYTHING because to be able to prove such a thing wrong is impossible.

It's like a version of scroedingers cat. Lets say we put a cat in a lead coffin and shut the lid and leave it, well we don't know the cats dead or alive and we cannot prove it unless we open the box. That's what god is, something in a lead lined box which no one is able to open.

However, yes we cannot disprove god, but you can't prove god either yet you seem to think it's ok to believe in god as that's faith but not ok to not believe in god. I have to ask what your faith is, are you a believer in god, an agnostic or an atheist?

In my view believing or not believing in god are both faiths as we cannot be sure until we're actually dead. However i think the atheists have slightly more of a case than the god believers simply becuase plenty of science is available to show that when a body dies it's dead and we have found no mechanism as to how a person could go on living after death.

So atheists who don't believe in god have a slight edge over the person who does believe in god. However i think the most logical thing to do is shrug your shoulders and say you have no idea whos right. Again i will say it, agnosticism is the way forward, (only joking).

Or maybe a better way would be to just accept everyones viewpoints, which is easier as an agnostic i think, because agnostics have no axe to grind belief wise.

EDIT

Just to say abot the burden of proof. well scientifically and philosophically the atheists are correct. The burden of proof is on the person making the claim, that's how human society has always worked. In the old times people would see miracles and other things as proof, but as our science advanced and we were able to dismiss miracles as medical occurences, atmospheric phenomena and simple magic tricks, we learnt we needed a better proof.

I will say this again "the burden of proof is on the person making the claim" as it is truly impossible to prove anything isn't true. I could right this second make up an idea that a dancing flamingo is controlling the mind of George W Bush, prove me i'm wrong! If i claimed this then everyone would want me to prove it, and rightfully so.

EDIT again!


garyo1954
That it might be outrageous, beyond belief, unheard of, or just out of this world, has no bearing (outside personal belief), as to it being true or not.


It has no bearing unless we're talking about the scientific method, which is the best way we've found of determining truth to 99.99% If something has to be determined true then tests are needed, however you cannot test god and so it's down simply to what you wish to believe. Again though the atheists have the edge, they have a good deal of proof that our brains are what contains our conciousness, that we are nothing more than a series of chemical and electrical reactions culminating in the ability to comprehend our own mortality and the idea of a superior being.

They have proof that when we die these chemical and electrical signals cease, slowly rot and are returned to the earth via micro-organisms, carnivorous animals and/or insects.

The proof on the opposite side of the argument is............faith, that's it.


[edit on 19-5-2008 by ImaginaryReality1984]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 08:50 PM
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reply to post by ImaginaryReality1984
 


Very well thought out! I really enjoyed reading it. But......(yeah, there's always this little but.....)

Some background for those who may not be familiar with the idea of Schrödinger's Cat: A cat, along with a flask containing a poison, is placed in a sealed box shielded against environmentally induced quantum decoherence. The flask is shattered, releasing the poison, if a Geiger counter detects radiation. Quantum mechanics seems to suggest that after a while the cat is simultaneously alive and dead, in a quantum superposition of coexisting alive and dead states. Yet when we look in the box we expect to see the cat either alive or dead, not in a mixture of alive and dead.



In my view believing or not believing in god are both faiths as we cannot be sure until we're actually dead. However i think the atheists have slightly more of a case than the god believers simply becuase plenty of science is available to show that when a body dies it's dead and we have found no mechanism as to how a person could go on living after death.


I'm not into the Jesus conspiracy much. I'm assuming this is in relation to that. But as much as I know about Christianity, I don't accept Paul's ideas. Paul was, at most, a good talker. And the best thing we could do with everything Paul wrote is trash it. Yeah, I'm a little Jewish.




I will say this again "the burden of proof is on the person making the claim" as it is truly impossible to prove anything isn't true. I could right this second make up an idea that a dancing flamingo is controlling the mind of George W Bush, prove me i'm wrong! If i claimed this then everyone would want me to prove it, and rightfully so.


As you say, the burden of proof is on the person making the claim. Thus, the burden of proof would lie with someone making a negative claim as well, as with scientists?

When scientists work with a hypothesis (a belief) is it not taken to be true for the purpose of investigation? And later to be proved or disproved?

Sure it is. That is the way scientific investigations work. So then the statement 'God exists' is a working hypothesis, neither proved nor disproved.

And those who say 'There is no God,' have reached the conclusion through investigation and experimentation, and must have evidence to support that statement.

Its the only logical conclusion we can draw since belief is proof of nothing.

Thank you! I enjoyed this post and the direction it has led.

Schrödinger's cat died of lead poisoning, after the box was opened.



edited to keep PETA at bay: No actual cats were harmed in this posting. Any similarity to live/dead or dead/live cats are purely coincidental and should not be tried at home.

[edit on 19-5-2008 by garyo1954]



posted on May, 19 2008 @ 10:28 PM
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reply to post by garyo1954
 


and so proof in this sense is in the eye of the beholder. Since christians use personal testimony as proof and in much the same way atheist do too.



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