1. Which is the best atheist argument?  2. Can science disprove or prove the existence of god?  3. What do you think about this video on free will debunked?


I have notes on the existence of God.  Here they are.  Existence of God.  In the first part, I summarize the most common arguments from atheists against the existence of God.   In my opinion, the best argument against the existence of God is the one that comes from the existence of pain and suffering.   The argument goes something like this:  How can an all-powerful and all-loving God be consistent with all the suffering in the world.  Surely God, if he were as powerful as you say and as compassionate as you say, would prevent cancer, birth defects, war, genocide, earthquakes and hurricanes.  At first glance, this seems to be a powerful argument.  However, upon careful examination it collapses.  I respond to this in a second set of notes which I am also attaching.   In very short, God gave us free will because he is so loving and powerful.  It is our sin and rebellion that brings most suffering into the world.  But that is not the whole story, as there are “natural” causes of pain and suffering, such as disease, hurricanes and earthquakes.  But these are natural parts of a natural world which was wonderfully and amazingly created by God.  If anyone can improve on God’s world, they are invited to create a better universe, but I will defend the goodness of God.  Here are some notes on the question of pain and suffering: Problem of Pain and Suffering.  If you do a search, you will find audio on the topic at the web site as well.
No, science can neither prove nor disprove the existence of God.  Science, by definition, deals with natural laws and natural processes.  Science is not at all helpful in discussions about the supernatural.  Science, which deals only with the natural, is completely powerless to either dismiss or to prove the existence of the supernatural.  Science involved repeatable and observable things.  The supernatural is neither directly observable, nor is it repeatable.  So, an honest scientist will acknowledge that the supernatural is outside their range of expertise, as long as they are strictly talking only about what is scientific.
Now, science can be used to provide an argument either for or against the existence of God, but it cannot be used to prove it either way in the classic sense of proof.  However, we can ask what is the most likely conclusion from science.  From what we know from science (that the universe was created and that it is fantastically well-tuned to allow for life), is it more likely and reasonable to conclude that God exists, or that he does not exist?  I believe that the available information is more consistent with the conclusion that God exists.  The apparent fact that the universe was created, and that its creation is so well fit to the requirements for life tells me that God exists.  But….  This is not proof.  It is merely asking and answering the question what is the most reasonable conclusion, given the known facts.
This video sounds really convincing if you do not think super carefully about the nature of the argument the woman is making.  What she is doing is rather blatantly (in my opinion) using circular reasoning here.  If you look carefully at what she says, and her reasoning for what she says, you will see that this is very clearly circular reasoning.
Basically, what she does is she assumes a completely deterministic world, governed only by natural law.  Having made this assumption, she then uses this assumption to “prove” that there is no free will.  Basically, what she does is she assumes that everything is predetermined, then she uses this assumption to “prove” that everything is predetermined.  In reality, this is not an argument at all.  Or if it is an “argument” it is clearly a logical fallacy.  For example, she tells us that we are made up of atoms.  Atoms act according to natural laws, which cannot be affected by anything like a human will.  OK, but she began by assuming that all we are is atoms–protons, neutrons and electrons.  How does she know this? What is her evidence that we do not have a soul or a spiritual nature?  Has she proven this by experiment?  No, she has not. She simply assumes her conclusion before making her argument and then proceeds to her conclusion, which was really her assumption.  This is a completely invalid, fallacious argument!
But, she does make a couple of good arguments, that I want to acknowledge.  For example, she argues that quantum mechanics is not a good argument for the existence of human consciousness or free will.  I agree with this.  I have heard the existence of uncertainty in quantum mechanics as providing room for free will to act.  I believe that this is not a strong argument, and I believe that this woman does a good job discounting the use of quantum mechanics as support for free will.  She also refutes the existence of chaotic things as evidence for free will.  The fact that there are things which, in principle, are not predictable is not evidence for free will.
So, I will say this.  This woman does do a good job of refuting a couple of common arguments for free will.  However, despite this successful refutation, in the end, her entire argument is based on assuming determinism. She assumes that everything in the universe is governed by natural law. She assumes that there is no supernatural God who can give us free will.  She then uses her assumption to prove the validity of her assumption, which is classic circular reasoning.  This argument is simply bogus.
John Oakes

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