Yes, I know your logic is faulty

If you’re reading this blog, there’s a decent chance that I never met you.  I know nothing of you.  I don’t know where you live, how you grew up, what you do, what you believe, and certainly not why you believe it.  But if you believe in God, and believe you’re rationally justified in doing so, you’re not. You may have heard this before, and didn’t understand. But luckily I’m here to explain it to you.

I’m staking a claim here that you don’t have good reasons to believe in your god.  Considering how much I don’t know about you, that seems pretty smug of me, right?  Do I sound elitist or narcissistic?  Many would say yes.  But I’m not, and I’ll tell you why.  Even though I don’t know you at all, I can say with a very high degree of confidence that you are of the species homo sapien.  Further, I’m going to stand on the claim that you are made of cells.  Now, if I’m wrong on that, please provide documentation, and I’ll go ahead and publicly admit I was wrong.  But in the meantime, I’m gonna go ahead and stand on that pretty solid.  Do I sound smug if I tell you that you are a human made up of cells?  Elitist?

Of course I don’t. We all know that humans developed writing for communication, and we’re the only animals that have the capacity to do so. We also know about cell theory. Chances that you’re not made of cells hovers between zero and more zero.

You’re not special

So, even from the comfort of my sofa, I can already draw some pretty basic, universal conclusions about religious belief, yours included.  There are a half-dozen major world religions.  There are hundreds of sub-groups of those religions.  And there are thousands upon thousands upon thousands of denominations of those religions.  Just Christianity alone has over 30,000 denominations, which is more denominations than there are SENTENCES in the bible.  Just based on sheer numbers alone, a one-in-a-million chance is probably a very generous chance to give that you, the theist reading this, are right.

But let’s just pretend for just a second that it just so happens that you just happen to be the person that has the right answer.  Or your church, I’m fine with that.  That means that if you walk out of your church, go down a few blocks, and walk into the next church, all of those people inside are using faulty logic to believe what they believe.  This has to be true!  If your religious belief is correct, then billions of other people are believing with faulty logic, because they aren’t coming up with your answer.  If you are right, they are all wrong.

Well, you ask, what kind of faulty logic does everyone else use?  If someone is right, and other people are wrong, we could expect as many bad arguments as there are denominations.  But what we actually see is a nauseating loop of the same or slightly repackaged arguments, long ago debunked.

These bad arguments are used so repetitively and tiresomely that I found a handy bingo card over at The Friendly Atheist, he attributed it to his friend Bob Seidensticker.

BINGO-large1

The humor is that we’ve heard them all before. This isn’t a complete list, but if your neighbor church says it, I’ve probably heard it.

Their bad logic is your bad logic

Good arguments result in sound conclusions.  On the other hand, a single bad argument can result in any number of wrong conclusions.  What this means is your conclusion is equally invalid as the church down the street.

But wait, how do I know you have a completely different argument? Because you’re not famous, that’s why.  If you crafted an evidenced, logically sound argument for God, your specific denomination would take over the world.  It would actually make sense, and other believers and atheists alike would join in your ranks.  Instead of being published in self-serving religious publications, it would make the science journals, and we would be astonished.

But this has not happened.  Instead, apologists put out stupid books that pretend they are scientific.  Spoiler alert, they aren’t.  They’re actually just propaganda for believers, using misleading and dishonest arguments to help believers stay faithful.  As intellectual arguments, they are completely useless.

They use junk science, with junk evidence, used in junk logic to hint at something that might have happened that “we don’t know for sure, but we’re just gonna call it god, and since nobody is checking to make sure I am not making shit up, I’ll just go ahead and say that god just also happens to be the particular religion and particular denomination that I’m comfortable with.”  They are cringeworthy, dishonest, and painfully the same.

So, I’m honestly not judging your character or your intellect or your capacity to evaluate things.  Honestly.  But if you have tried to rationalize a belief in God, you are in fact using a fallacious argument.  Don’t be mad at me, I’m the messenger. Take your best argument off the shelf, and examine it critically. It will fail.

The Spartan Atheist

 

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67 thoughts on “Yes, I know your logic is faulty

  1. The only problem with this post is you’ve summed it up so well that it leaves nothing for the rest of us to write about. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Lol! I take that as a compliment. Thank you so much! 😄

      Liked by 3 people

  2. “But if you believe in God, and believe you’re rationally justified in doing so, you’re not. You may have heard this before, and didn’t understand. But luckily I’m here to explain it to you. I’m staking a claim here that you don’t believe in your god for good reasons.”

    You never quite got around to explaining how belief in God is not rationally justified. You indicated that the sheer number of different religions make it unlikely that any particular one of them is correct. While true, that does not demonstrate that belief in God is irrational. The differences between religious worldviews have no bearing on the existence of God.

    I would never stake a claim that you don’t have good reasons for saying belief in God is irrational. Can you explain what is irrational about belief in God?

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    1. Thanks for the question, John. It is irrational because it relies on fallacious arguments. I didn’t list them all here and then deconstruct them because of space, but could easily do this for any particular example.
      But it’s suffice to,say that if we even had one rational example, we wouldn’t need apologists anymore.

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      1. I see. Certainly anything based on fallacious arguments would be irrational.

        What is one of the fallacious arguments to which you are referring?

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      2. Well, John, we already discussed the Prime Mover. However, you seemed very ardent about avoiding the lack of evidence problem with this argument. So if you care to be honest and consider it, that’s fine. But if you insist on calling ignorance “evidence”, then this won’t be a very long conversation.

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      3. I never claimed ignorance as evidence.

        Please articulate the argument for the prime mover as you understand it and explain where it is fallacious.

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      4. Argument basically. Stuff moves. It moves only when moved by something. Something must have been the first mover. That mover is God.
        I’m sure you can find mistakes in there, but I’m not attacking my description, I’m summarizing.
        If the universe was always as it is now, his argument may be valid. But that is an assumption (ignorance). The universe was not always as it is now. Therefore his first premise is based on the fallacy of argument from ignorance, and his argument fails.

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      5. Your summary is essentially correct.
        Things cannot move themselves. Physics describes this reality. It is science, not religion.
        There is nothing fallacious in this argument.

        How can you claim “the universe was not always as it is now”? Isn’t that also an argument from ignorance?

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      6. No, because I have the evidence to back it up. The evidence points us to a time about 13.8 billion years ago when time and space began, before matter came into existence. Since it is impossible for anything to do something without time, a prime mover is completely illogical. A concious prime mover is impossible twice as much since both processing thoughts and moving objects requires time.
        But in a universe described by the big bang, natural forces alone expanded the universe, providing the actual energy.

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      7. But even if I am wrong, it still demonstrates that Aquinas was using the argument from ignorance, because he didn’t consider any other options.

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      8. Aquinas reasoned backward from the evidence at hand. Things do not actualize their own movement. Again, this is science, not religion.

        You have not demonstrated how the argument is fallacious. You have suggested that the argument might be invalid in an alternate universe.

        The strength of the argument is that it conforms to both the first and second laws of thermodynamics. It follows logically from observable, testable physics.

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      9. John, simply by offering an alternative, I demonstrated his argument as fallacious. Remember the sun moving across the sky? A god doing it was fallacious logic, and as it turns out demonstrably false. Aquinas is doing the same.
        As for thermodynamics, and gravity, and time, and mass, they were all produced in the big bang. So before the big bang, it is irrelevant.

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      10. “A god doing it was fallacious logic, and as it turns out demonstrably false. Aquinas is doing the same.”

        You still need to show where Aquinas argument is “demonstrably false”. Again, the argument is from logic as evidenced by physics. Calling it “fallacious” is denying both science and reason.

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      11. John, once again, I don’t know how much clearer I can be. There is another explanation. Just by simply having another explanation, he is engaged in a fallacious argument.

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      12. I’m going to offer another explanation to yours.
        Will that make your argument fallacious?

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      13. Depends. Did I already consider it? If I did, then went where the evidence leads, then no. But if I ignored other options and assumed myself correct without evidence, then yes, I am making a fallacious argument.
        I welcome new options for consideration. You do not.

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      14. I welcome new options for consideration too.
        I am open to having my logic proved flawed.
        I’m ready to toss out physics the instant it’s demonstrated to be false.

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      15. Good. Then research what science has to say about the early universe. I would suggest “A Universe from Nothing” by Lawrence Krause. He has youtube videos too of the same name.
        Again, “what moves the sun across the sky?” used to be a valid question, but an understanding of the entire mechanism of orbits makes it a nonsensical question. Likewise, “what was the prime mover?” is a nonsensical question when you actually understand what the big bang means in terms of mass, time, and physics. It doesn’t destroy physics, it expands it. It’s amazing and wonderful. It’s so much bigger than the idea of something pushing stuff into motion.

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      16. I always appreciate replies that require me to “educate myself” and “do my own research”. What makes you think I am ignorant of these concepts?

        But, as I said, I’m open to new information. I’m ready to have my worldview shattered by the brilliant theories of Lawrence Krauss (note the spelling).

        You will likely reject my summary of Krauss book so I’ll offer this from Michael Brooks at New Scientist:
        “Krauss contends that the multiverse makes the question of what determined our laws of nature “less significant”. Truthfully, it just puts the question beyond science – for now, at least. That (together with the frustratingly opaque origins of a multiverse) means Krauss can’t quite knock out those who think there must ultimately be a prime mover. ”

        And David Albert from the New York Times:
        “But the laws [of physics] have no bearing whatsoever on questions of where the elementary stuff came from, or of why the world should have consisted of the particular elementary stuff it does, as opposed to something else, or to nothing at all.

        The fundamental physical laws that Krauss is talking about in A Universe From Nothing–the laws of relativistic quantum field theories–are no exception to this. The particular, eternally persisting, elementary physical stuff of the world, according to the standard presentations of relativistic quantum field theories, consists (unsurprisingly) of relativistic quantum fields. And the fundamental laws of this theory take the form of rules concerning which arrangements of those fields are physically possible and which aren’t, and rules connecting the arrangements of those fields at later times to their arrangements at earlier times, and so on–and they have nothing whatsoever to say on the subject of where those fields came from, or of why the world should have consisted of the particular kinds of fields it does, or of why it should have consisted of fields at all, or of why there should have been a world in the first place. Period. Case closed. End of story.”

        And George Ellis (Professor of Applied Mathematics, University of Cape Town):
        “[Krauss] is presenting untested speculative theories of how things came into existence out of a pre-existing complex of entities, including variational principles, quantum field theory, specific symmetry groups, a bubbling vacuum, all the components of the standard model of particle physics, and so on. He does not explain in what way these entities could have pre-existed the coming into being of the universe, why they should have existed at all, or why they should have had the form they did. And he gives no experimental or observational process whereby we could test these vivid speculations of the supposed universe-generation mechanism. How indeed can you test what existed before the universe existed? You can’t…what he is presenting is not tested science. It’s a philosophical speculation, which he apparently believes is so compelling he does not have to give any specification of evidence that would confirm it is true.”

        Maybe you should contact these guys and tell them how evidence works.

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      17. John, I asked that you do your own research because this isnt a physics blog. This is a blog about getting the wrong answer. Since I’ve already demonstrated that Aquinas’ argument was fallacious, his conclusion can not be held with confidence.
        I will not discuss further with you until you can concede Aquinas’ argument was fallacious.

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      18. Ok.
        I’ll concede Aquinas when you concede that Krauss’ argument is fallacious.

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      19. This isn’t a game of sharing ice cream, John. This is about what is or isn’t real. Reality doesn’t have to be split 50/50 based on what people believe.
        I’m willing to examine Krauss’ argument, but I will do that in it’s own right. And now that you’ve demanded that I reject it without discussion based solely on the fact that you were wrong about Aquinas is tantamount to intellectual bullying, and I won’t let you. If you are an honest person, you would concede Aquinas full stop, and we could later discuss Krauss. And the misspelling before was auto correct.

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      20. This seems like intellectual bullying. If you are an honest person, you would admit that you are guilty of the same thing you’re condemning in me.

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      21. You wish to force me to concede a point not based on reason, but because you are trying to keep score, and I’m bullying? Get outta here, John. Your desperation is showing.

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      22. I agree there is a lot of desperation on display.

        A single piece of evidence for self actualization will refute Aquinas’ argument.

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      23. No, John, I’m not asking you to admit he was wrong. I’m not asking you to agree with the alternative. I’m not asking you to throw god away in the trash. All I’m asking you to do is concede that Aquinas’ argument is fallacious. That’s it.

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      24. Yes. I know what you want.
        Give me a single example of self actualization and I will admit Aquinas was wrong.

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      25. I don’t even have to give you an example, so I won’t. All I have to give you is the possibility, which Aquinas did not consider, thus his argument was fallacious.

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      26. No.
        You have to give an example that demonstrates Aquinas was fallacious. I don’t have to just take your word for it.

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      27. John, I’m not demonstrating option B for you because then we will argue about whether B is true or not. It doesnt matter. Aquinas assumed option A, he did not consider option B, or C or D for that matter. Since he lived hundreds of years ago, I can somewhat forgive him for the error. But the error was made nonetheless. Because he failed to account for option B or beyond, his argument is fallacious. He may be right, he may be wrong, but his argument is still fallacious. I have now demonstrated his fallacy, please concede.

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      28. If you don’t demonstrate option B, then it doesn’t exist.

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      29. I actually don’t. Its not called the argument from ignorance because you’re convinced of an alternative, it’s called that because you don’t consider any alternatives.

        But if you insist, Big Bang Theory. Concede.

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      30. The Big Bang is not an example of self actualization. You have begged the question. That’s like me saying “Creation Theory” as proof of a prime mover.

        If you simply said, “There is no evidence for God that I find compelling” then I will concede that as true.

        I

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      31. If you’re just going to dismiss every thing I say based on putting your fingers in your ears and saying “la, la, la”, then we ate at an impasse. The big bang is highly evidenced. You pretended like you know that, but now dismiss it as conjecture. Once again, you’re making nothing into supposed evidence for your God, but lots of good solid evidence is dismissed with a wave of your hand. This intellectual dishonesty is not worth my time.

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      32. I did not say the Big Bang is conjecture. And I didn’t say it is evidence for God.
        Conjecture would be saying the Big Bang actualized itself. Is that your position?

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      33. The big bang is the natural process by which the universe began, John. That is my position.

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      34. Then your view is different from Lawrence Krauss. That’s cool!

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      35. The natural part or the universe began part?

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      36. So Krauss thinks it was supernatural?

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      37. He probably wouldn’t use that word. The Big Bang wasn’t “natural” though. There was no nature prior to it.

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      38. Holy shit, dude. He specifically uses the word “natural” all the time. And now that I’m absolutely positive you’re making shit up, and you have absolutely no interest in learning, I’ll bid you adieu.

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      39. Holy shit, dude. I said he probably wouldn’t say “supernatural”.

        How old are you?

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      40. Thanks for playing, John. I don’t converse with people that lie to make their point.

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      41. I didn’t lie.
        You should treat people respectfully even if you disagree with them.

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      42. You said Krauss wouldn’t categorize it as natural. That is a lie. He explicitly said it is natural and nothing else. He dwelt on the natural nature of this discovery. You, sir, are a charlatan.

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      43. I said he wouldn’t use the word supernatural.
        Again…Nature did not exist before the Big Bang. If you have a quote from Krauss saying, “the big bang was a natural occurrence” then I stand corrected.

        I am not a charlatan. Dismissing me as a liar is rude and lazy.

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      44. “If we live in a universe full of stuff, how did it get here? And many people think that very question implies the need for a creator. But what’s truly been amazing, and what the book’s about is the revolutionary developments in both cosmology and particle physics over the past 30 or 40 years that have not only changed completely the way we think about the universe but made it clear that there’s a plausible case for understanding precisely how a universe full of stuff, like the universe we live in, could result literally from nothing by natural processes.”
        Lawrence Krauss

        https://www.npr.org/2012/01/13/145175263/lawrence-krauss-on-a-universe-from-nothing

        John, you are a charlatan.

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      45. And you are rude and intellectually lazy.

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      46. At least I don’t misrepresent people based on your own desire to be right. You misrepresent people, you misrepresent the bible, you misrepresent the nature of evidence, and you misrepresent your knowledge of Jesus. You are a charlatan. And now everybody knows it.

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    2. I found it a pretty safe bet to not believe whatever you believe. It has 100% efficacy and been my faithful tool. Yes. You are a tool

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s completely irrational and quite typical of you, Jim.

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      2. Well Darth, I see you’ve found greener grass to burn up with your mere style. I am confident Spartan will see through your games soon enough. Trolling can be a fickle thing, use easy tried and true before you put in the pop gear and the jerk bait.

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      3. I believe you’re a thoughtful person who offers excellent insight.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Oh, the jerk bait comment. I know, I have a keen eye for fisherman with too much free time.

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      5. I believe you’re very wise.

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  3. Jb is being disingenuous here. Lawrence krauss never… i mean never posits that the event that caused the expansion of what we know as our universe was anything other than natural. Its plain to see that jb has never read a universe from nothing and knows very little of what krauss actually says.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, KIA. I knew that before but now he blatantly dropped a lie. If I wanted people to lie to me I’d go back to church.

      Like

      1. Coolio. Mega history with jb. He’s just not worth the argument time. He won’t be honest.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. By the way, good to meet you. Just followed you too.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. You must understand that Branyan is The Apologists’ Bitch and lying is his bag. Currently, he is currying favour with Mel Wild and wanders the Internet looking for blogs where he can unbutton his metaphorical trousers and expose himself.

    Once he has reached a state of Extreme Fundamentalist Arousal – it normally takes about 15 to 20 utterly asinine and disingenuous comments, he will rush back to his own blog where he can write what he believes is a truly awe inspiring piece so the rest of his herd can get themselves off. It is the closest thing he can get to internet porn without Jesus getting cross and sending him to the naughty step.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Brother, this comment just won the internet for today! I’m gonna print it, frame it and hang it over an altar. I’ll even burn candles in front of it and sacrifice a few chickens to it. Bravo!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Ha ha! Absolutely love the bingo game! Hilarious!
    https://aladyofreason.wordpress.com/

    Liked by 1 person

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