Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
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17-11-2011, 10:09 AM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 09:42 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  Azaraith and Chas - The Kalam argument is not "logically inconsistent". It does devolve into an infinite regress, but so does The Big Bang... whether arguing the first cause is a singularity or a God, either way we simply don't have scientific evidence to support where the first cause came from.

The Kalam argument is based on an unproven premise (Something caused the Universe to begin to exist) and a false syllogism (This First Cause must be God), making it logically incoherent.

I am not pitting the KA against the Big Bang, merely pointing out that the KA is debunked.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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17-11-2011, 12:20 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
As a naive philosopher, can't rightly give ya a professional opinion...

Sam Harris handles WLC just fine. As for Dawkins; just cause he's a superhero, don't mean he's got the full complement of superpowers - he just ain't no good versus a smart, compassionate theist. The love that creates also destroys - and Dawkins clearly projects a "talk end/kill begin" aspect whenever his intellectual/ academic identity feels threatened...

WLC ain't nothing but experienced. After peddling fifty hymnals to the choir, the only god he believes in is himself. His main advantage has been adaptive coloration; he comes across as "just one of the sheep." But he's a total construct - if somebody identifies with WLC, they are, in effect, a clone.

I mean, a sheeperson has been conditioned to docility in response to shepherds; that personality type skips the "mentor" phase and heads off into the Elysian pastures of idolatry. What you need then, is an exorcist.

...and no. Imposing on a fellow atheist to the degree of willful analysis of a WLC performance is beyond the bounds of rational skepticism.

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17-11-2011, 06:49 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 03:22 AM)mysticjbyrd Wrote:  Dawkins has debated with theists before,



Warning, this video is absolutely infuriating.
Do not watch more than say 5 minutes of it as its a complete waste of time.
And people wonder why he refuses to do it anymore lol.

That woman makes my head want to fucking explode. Same thing over and over and over. Does she realize that in a conversation it's not just you talking?
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17-11-2011, 08:10 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 09:42 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  
Quote:The Kalam argument is debunked by its logical inconsistency. It devolves into infinite regress and so it is logically incoherent.
Dawkins is quite a good debater and wouldn't lose such a debate; but as another poster said, the loser would just keep playing the magic card. He won't debate these people any more because it is not useful. He quotes a colleague when he says "That would look good on your CV, not so good on mine."

Azaraith and Chas - The Kalam argument is not "logically inconsistent". It does devolve into an infinite regress, but so does The Big Bang... whether arguing the first cause is a singularity or a God, either way we simply don't have scientific evidence to support where the first cause came from. In which case, to suggest one by default, is an Argument from Ignorance. But his debate opponents rarely mention this fallacy or address it. I'm not saying that there is no answer to the Kalam argument or that it is perfect, but that his opponents don't answer it properly. They treat it much like you do, to simply assert that it is imperfect - but if you don't address why, you get a response like "the scientific argument has the same problem", and that's often what his opponents get. Skepticism is the answer to such an argument, not a deconstruction.

And to merely state, even emphatically, that Dawkins is quite a good debater is not evidence of such. William Lane Craig does it for a living, and has been for many years. He's got the experience, while Dawkins has repeatedly mentioned that he doesn't debate. I've obviously read The God Delusion, I've seen the quote, and so we both know this fact of his lack of experience (he won't do it because he doesn't feel he benefits from it). Debating isn't just about the facts and evidence of your case, but how well you present them; also, about how well you know your opponent's arguments and the rebuttals to them. It's a skill that's gained, like all skills, through practice and training. WLC has had both, Dawkins has had neither, and that is why I believe WLC is objectively better at debating than RD.

The infinitely regressing issue isn't the only problem with the argument. I can't say we even know the answer to the beginning of the universe, we may not ever know (it's the ultimate cold case), but we don't have any proof of anything being infinite (regarding time or something physical - not mathematics), so we cannot simply assume that there is an infinite being that was the first cause. That assumption is baseless. There is no other way to argue that point that is logically consistent either - you can't just say that the first cause is "exempt" and began, but didn't need a first cause. Either the first cause is infinite (no beginning) or finite (has a beginning, therefore logically inconsistent with arguing that anything with a beginning has a first cause).

Again, that is only the first part of debunking the cosmological argument. The other is the fact that it wouldn't prove the existence of a god as defined by religion, especially not so particular as to prove the existence of the Christian God. An infinite first cause could be any number of things besides a god. A singularity being but one option.

Is the Big Bang a fact? There seems to be very good evidence for it, but just because we have no idea what triggered it doesn't mean that the trigger was infinite or a first cause. We simply don't know the answer to that yet. It could be a link in a much longer chain of events. Hell, the universe could be cyclical - expanding and then contracting repeatedly, like blowing up a balloon and deflating it over and over.

Better without God, and happier too.
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19-11-2011, 07:05 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 08:10 PM)Azaraith Wrote:  Again, that is only the first part of debunking the cosmological argument...

I'm not going to give a rebuttal to this... frankly, it isn't fun to play devil's advocate.

We all suffer from personal bias, and we rarely recognize it even after it's pointed out. I think our arguments get stronger when we remove the bias, and I think the arguments made in this thread are getting better with time, as you have to be careful not to give me more examples to pick on... but that could be my own bias talking!

If you guys ever consider a formal debate in the future, you must be aware that you can lose with the truth. Even if you're debating against the existence of Santa Claus, you'll be put to shame if your opponent has logical rebuttals to every point you make, especially if you don't see these arguments coming.

It's best to pretend that your argument is not bulletproof, and that your opponent is not silly or careless. If you take the debate seriously, I think that you'll do a better job. If atheists did this, WLC wouldn't be begging for and demanding these debates like he does.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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28-11-2011, 01:44 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 08:43 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  The main reason for this is that Craig picks his opponents based on their lack of debate skill. While Dawkins knows the issue of God's existence/nonexistence very well, he's not a debater. If Dawkins did take Craig up on this challenge, he'd probably lose, despite being "right".
That's just silly.

The reason Dawkins won't debate Craig is that you cannot have a meaningful debate with someone who believes:
"Should a conflict arise between the witness of the Holy Spirit to the fundamental truth of the Christian faith and beliefs based on argument and evidence, then it is the former which must take precedence over the latter, not vice versa."

Debating someone who does not believe in argument and evidence is pointless.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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29-11-2011, 02:32 PM (This post was last modified: 29-11-2011 02:49 PM by mysticjbyrd.)
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
I just wasted 30 mins of my life watching the video...

Let me summarize what he said to save you all some time,
He claims that the goal of theoretical physics is to disprove the existence of god. Except the big band theory, that now somehow became a creationist argument.
Then he makes some arguments mostly with false premises and just claims divinity as an explanation.

Here is an example of a couple of his statements,
He suggested that if god existed, he would have to be spaceless, and timeless.
Which by definition would then mean that he DIDN'T EXIST in our space time.
However, he later said he PROVED that the multi-verse did not exist.
Thus the only space-time in existence, is our own.
Therefore, if god is not in our space-time, the only one is existence, then by his own conclusions he proved that god does not exist.
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02-01-2012, 01:05 AM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(17-11-2011 08:10 PM)Azaraith Wrote:  The infinitely regressing issue isn't the only problem with the argument. I can't say we even know the answer to the beginning of the universe, we may not ever know (it's the ultimate cold case), but we don't have any proof of anything being infinite (regarding time or something physical - not mathematics), so we cannot simply assume that there is an infinite being that was the first cause. That assumption is baseless. There is no other way to argue that point that is logically consistent either - you can't just say that the first cause is "exempt" and began, but didn't need a first cause. Either the first cause is infinite (no beginning) or finite (has a beginning, therefore logically inconsistent with arguing that anything with a beginning has a first cause).

Again, that is only the first part of debunking the cosmological argument. The other is the fact that it wouldn't prove the existence of a god as defined by religion, especially not so particular as to prove the existence of the Christian God. An infinite first cause could be any number of things besides a god. A singularity being but one option.

Is the Big Bang a fact? There seems to be very good evidence for it, but just because we have no idea what triggered it doesn't mean that the trigger was infinite or a first cause. We simply don't know the answer to that yet. It could be a link in a much longer chain of events. Hell, the universe could be cyclical - expanding and then contracting repeatedly, like blowing up a balloon and deflating it over and over.

I just spent a lot of time on this thread and I have arrived at my conclusion. I can prove,at least to myself that Yahweh does not exist , at least not as the bible describes him.

Quote:...God is love. 1 John 4:8

They entered into a covenant to seek the LORD, the God of their ancestors, with all their heart and soul. All who would not seek the LORD, the God of Israel, were to be put to death, whether small or great, man or woman. 2 Chronicles 15:12-13
This is just one of many examples of why god is NOT love, and is therefore a liar and a hoax. I do not think we can prove or disprove that god exists, yet. But if he does exist he is real creep!

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02-01-2012, 12:49 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
(28-11-2011 01:44 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(17-11-2011 08:43 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  The main reason for this is that Craig picks his opponents based on their lack of debate skill. While Dawkins knows the issue of God's existence/nonexistence very well, he's not a debater. If Dawkins did take Craig up on this challenge, he'd probably lose, despite being "right".
That's just silly.

The reason Dawkins won't debate Craig is that you cannot have a meaningful debate with someone who believes:
"Should a conflict arise between the witness of the Holy Spirit to the fundamental truth of the Christian faith and beliefs based on argument and evidence, then it is the former which must take precedence over the latter, not vice versa."

Debating someone who does not believe in argument and evidence is pointless.

"Calm down, you two! New Shimmer is a floor wax AND a dessert topping!"

I think you're both right:

When backed into a corner, WLC pulls out the faith card, and that ends meaningful discussion.

But at the same time, it's important to recognize that debating is a sport or game, just like football or chess. Success in debating depends at least as much on practice and skill as it does on the actual merits of your argument. Craig is a master of sophistry and obfuscation and knows how to ingratiate himself with an audience. Dawkins is straightforward and honest rather than tactical.

I don't blame Dawkins for not debating Craig. Dawkins has better things to do with his time. Craig doesn't.

Religious disputes are like arguments in a madhouse over which inmate really is Napoleon.
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02-01-2012, 02:38 PM
RE: Is God a Delusion? The Debate That Never Was: William Lane Craig vs Richard Dawkins?
"A creationist debating an evolutionist is like a round earth believer debating a flat eather"

"Yeah, good idea. Make them buy your invisible apple. Insist that they do. Market it properly and don't stop until they pay for it." -Malleus
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