For the last few years, I have been relatively active in discussing/debating the existence of a god or gods [myself arguing on the "not existing" side]. By mere virtue of living in the United States, this generally means a focus on the biblical god of Abraham...but I am an equal opportunity disbeliever in any god that interacts with our world...that is to say...a theistic god. My motivation is not to demean any given god-believer, but rather to demean and ridicule bad arguments. If the god-believer can be shown that their argumentative position is unsupportable yet they remain married to that argument, then the god-believer brings that ridicule upon themselves. I strongly believe that there is no such thing as a thought crime and an individual is free to believe what they will...though it does trouble me that children are inculcated with mythology-as-fact before they are able to reason for themselves.
So...In my years of discussing belief, it quickly became apparent that there is a very limited arsenal of arguments for the existence of God. Here I wish to present a list of common arguments for the existence of a theistic god and show how they fail. To my mind, the arguments cited below should simply be taken off the table if the god-believer wishes to have any intellectual credibility.
Over the coming weeks/months/years, I will provide provide a brief dissertation on how each of these arguments fail. Feel free to suggest other arguments if you feel I have missed some important ones. Remember...I am only refuting arguments cited for the existence of a personal, involved, theistic god and, for this exercise, am unconcerned with arguments for the "some higher power" deistic god.
- 1) The bible is the most popular book in the world
- 2) Why is there something instead of nothing?
- 3) Effectiveness of prayer
- 4) Personal experience
- 5) My holy book says so
- 6) The miracles of my deity
- 7) Prophecies
- 8) Irreducible complexity
- 9) The morality of humankind
- 10) The argument from consequence
- 11) The uniqueness of Christianity
- 12) All societal benefits of religion
- 13) The inerrancy of my holy book