Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
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01-04-2016, 06:17 PM (This post was last modified: 01-04-2016 08:05 PM by embeddedwes.)
Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
I am a relatively new atheist and am still doing my best to read up on logical fallacies, common arguments, etc. so if/when I ever get the pleasure of debating people I can not be ignorant. I only preface my message with the above so that if I say something exceptionally stupid I have an excuse, haha.

My real question is related to the one less god argument. I've heard it a lot and it makes sense to me but there seem to be a lot of harsh christian commentaries on this argument talking about how it is in and of itself a fallacy. Perhaps they're right or perhaps they're grasping at straws I'm not sure. Either way I thought I'd make a nice like mathematical comparison to limits.

The limit of 1 over infinity is 0 and the limit of 0 over infinity is 0, so from that perspective regardless of whether you're an atheist or a monotheist your have the same chances (0% effectively) of having your beliefs afterlife promises being delivered. I think this is a decent argument and draws upon the one less god argument but is subtly different because instead of trying to argue why I'm an atheist Im' simply making a statement that a monotheists chances of making it to their "promised good afterlife" is not likely.

I attached a PDF with my argument. Is this a good argument or are there flaws in it and if so are they fixable flaws. I'd love to post a YouTube video about this particular idea but again I don't want to come off ignorant in the video so I"m looking for proof reading of my argument I guess.

Let me know what you all think! Thanks in advance!

For some reason it's not letting me attach files? So here's a link to the PDF on Google Drive: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B-pYPA...jJBc3VkbGc
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01-04-2016, 09:09 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
Haven't looked at the pdf but it sounds like your argument might make the case that believing in N gods increases the chances of an afterlife promise being met since N is larger than 1, and the more promises the better. If N is really large, that one of those promises comes true looks more certain, except there's no way to tell WHICH one. Thus enlarging gods believed in from N to N + 1 improves things more, to N + N even more, and to N to the Nth power incalculably more. Logically, monotheism is a dead end since it's got only one promise (and a not very appealing one at that). Nulltheism (sometimes mispronounced as atheism) has no promise at all, but a lot of us here at TTA have known that for some time. Tongue
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01-04-2016, 09:29 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
That's along the lines of what I was saying... although instead of making a case for believing in n gods being a good thing, I was rather saying the believing in 0 vs 1 god has an almost imperceptible change in statistically being correct or incorrect when compared to an infinite number of possible gods.

I do think you caught me on something though. I used the word atheist in my argument but I suppose a more appropriate word would be nulltheist.
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01-04-2016, 11:48 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(01-04-2016 06:17 PM)embeddedwes Wrote:  The limit of 1 over infinity is 0 and the limit of 0 over infinity is 0, so from that perspective regardless of whether you're an atheist or a monotheist your have the same chances (0% effectively) of having your beliefs afterlife promises being delivered.

That perspective is, however, invalid.

Probability calculations require accurate information on all the system they try to model. There is no information available on gods. Any probability "calculations" made regarding them are meaningless.

Nonetheless, welcome to the forum. It's good to have you, and please don't take the above as any sort of personal attack. I just tend towards extreme bluntness when talking about things like this, because it's best to be clear and simple in order to avoid confusion.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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01-04-2016, 11:57 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(01-04-2016 06:17 PM)embeddedwes Wrote:  The limit of 1 over infinity is 0 and the limit of 0 over infinity is 0,

I don't think that's right.

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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02-04-2016, 12:12 AM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?



[Image: E3WvRwZ.gif]
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02-04-2016, 03:25 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(01-04-2016 11:48 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  
(01-04-2016 06:17 PM)embeddedwes Wrote:  The limit of 1 over infinity is 0 and the limit of 0 over infinity is 0, so from that perspective regardless of whether you're an atheist or a monotheist your have the same chances (0% effectively) of having your beliefs afterlife promises being delivered.

That perspective is, however, invalid.

Probability calculations require accurate information on all the system they try to model. There is no information available on gods. Any probability "calculations" made regarding them are meaningless.

Nonetheless, welcome to the forum. It's good to have you, and please don't take the above as any sort of personal attack. I just tend towards extreme bluntness when talking about things like this, because it's best to be clear and simple in order to avoid confusion.

Thanks! I'm glad to be a member of the forum and I appreciate your input; extreme bluntness is usually a good thing IMO as it does like you said leave no room for vagueness!

So I just want to make sure I understand why the perspective is invalid so here's my understanding (your words restated), but correct me if I'm wrong. Basically because it can't be known for certain that there are an infinite number of gods - in much the same way we don't know for certain whether there's 0 or 1 or 10 or 50 god(s) then any argument of probability or statistics related to N (the number of God's) is going to be inaccurate due to the lack of complete (or at least statistically significant) amounts of information?
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02-04-2016, 03:27 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(02-04-2016 12:12 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  


Interesting video, thanks!
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02-04-2016, 03:28 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(02-04-2016 03:25 PM)embeddedwes Wrote:  Basically because it can't be known for certain that there are an infinite number of gods - in much the same way we don't know for certain whether there's 0 or 1 or 10 or 50 god(s) then any argument of probability or statistics related to N (the number of God's) is going to be inaccurate due to the lack of complete (or at least statistically significant) amounts of information?

No. Because we have no information at all about what a god is, how it might be detected, what conditions must be true in order to facilitate its existence, or any number of other things, it is not possible to assign any meaningful probability to the idea of one existing.

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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02-04-2016, 03:29 PM
RE: Unlikely Destination Argument (Similar to One Less God) Thoughts?
(01-04-2016 11:57 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(01-04-2016 06:17 PM)embeddedwes Wrote:  The limit of 1 over infinity is 0 and the limit of 0 over infinity is 0,

I don't think that's right.

You could be right, my calculus is a bit fuzzy (it's been a few years) but Wolfram Alpha does seem to confirm my math is correct. But if I made a mistake please do let me know. Thanks!

https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=li...3Einfinity
https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=li...3Einfinity
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