Archive for the ‘Philosophy’ Category

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The Profound Contingency of Reality

July 10, 2013

If a tree falls in the forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? I’ve heard atheists such as Sam Harris answer this with a definitive “yes” without blinking. But actually, it doesn’t make a sound!

This video explains something we often don’t think about. It’s something that is so profound, so simple, yet we take forgranted every day. It’s the contingent nature of conscious beings and the world. Sound was created for us, and we were created for sound. Sound is only a reality if there is a brain to perceive the sound. Otherwise, there is no sound, only waves. Ultimately, sound is a perception. The same is for sight.

Think of it this way: Imagine the world being black and soundless unless you were wearing a specialized helmet. Nothing could be perceived unless the helmet was put on to transmit the data floating around. You take the helmet off and nothing. You put it on and you perceive the world with sound, sight, taste, touch, etc. That is the human brain. The sound waves and light waves were created for us to perceive, and our ears and eyes were created for the sound and light waves to give our brains that perception.

Things are profoundly contingent!

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Why The Beef With Intelligent Design? (Naturalism Is At Stake)

May 24, 2012

ID became more popularized in 1985 after the publication of Michael Denton’s book “Evolution: A Theory In Crisis”, and in 1999 after the publication of Michael Behe’s book “Darwin’s Black Box”. You can go to my other thread here and read my responses to commonly raised objections to ID. For the purposes of this thread, however, I want to touch on what I see as being the heart of the matter, or the heart of why ID is so controversial. The heart of the matter is that ID poses a threat to philosophical naturalism (matter is all there is), and where there is a threat to philosophical naturalism, there is also believed to be a threat to methodological naturalism (empiricism is the only way to attain true knowledge).

Around 250 years ago it was primarily the influence of philosopher David Hume whom sparked the modern notion that empiricism (observation via the 5 senses) leads to the truth of the world. This has morphed into many assumptions that atheists currently have, ie. the idea that something shouldn’t be believed unless it can by physically demonstrated. It gives the atheist an excuse and means they supposedly are justified in their rejection of God. They fail to consult God as a prime cause (personal starting point for everything). Nor do they wish to acknowledge God through final causes (purpose and order behind creation), but only wish to limit their inquiry of God to Hume’s 5 senses.

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Why Do You Believe In Biblical Miracles While Rejecting Other Miracles?

December 24, 2011

There’s a debate on youtube where college students debate the topic of miracles. When I find it I’ll post it on here because it’s pertinent to this issue.

Often when there are debates on the topic of miracles this question is raised by the naturalistic atheist, namely, why do Christians only nitpick and choose to believe in the Biblical miracles, yet reject all other miracle claims? Is there a double standard going on? Is the Christian behaving inconsistently here and arbitrarily giving the Bible the benefit of the doubt?

Here’s my quick response to this important question:

First we need to define what we mean by a “miracle”. Usually what the naturalist will mean by this is any phenomenon that is not “natural”. I would argue that this is a bad standard because of the fact that morality and logic are not ordinarily accounted for by “nature” alone. I’d argue that morality is “supernatural” behavior. The fact that you’re even reading this or agree that molesting kids for the fun of it is always morally wrong is proof of this. If what “nature” cannot account for is to be considered a miracle then all humans have miraculous behavior. Philosophical Naturalism can only give us “what is”, not “what should be”, and morality and logic say we shouldn’t do certain things and that we shouldn’t contradict.

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What Should We Assume And Not Assume About TAG? (Clarifications Within Presuppositional Apologetics)

May 8, 2011

What is TAG? TAG stands for the transcendental argument for God’s existence. It is a form of apologetics under the umbrella of presuppositional apologetics. Presuppositional apologetics examines what a person already supposes or assumes about reality and the world. Just like there can be only one Highlander, so there can only be one worldview which is most consistent with all of reality. Is Christianity it? TAG is a part of presupositional apologetics that shows this to be the case. TAG especially helps show that “naturalistic” atheism can’t be correct because TAG reveals how without God there would be no such thing as thinking or morality. It is a powerful apologetic. It’s usually confusing at first but then begins to make a lot of sense. Thankfully, presupositional apologetics is starting to catch on more in mainstream Christianity.

However, here are some concerns I have with how people use TAG:

(1) Is it sinful to use historical and scientific methods to prove God’s existence like many proponents of TAG claim?

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A Discussion About Our Pre-Commitment to Logic (Is It Proof of God?)

August 24, 2010

Bill: “Because the LoNC (law of non-contradiction) cannot be false. Any attempt to prove it false necessarily assumes its truth. That’s precisely what “impossibility of the contrary” means. If you think it’s possible to prove it false or to limn and defend ANY situation …in which it could be false, please, by all means, illuminate us.”

Me: “Bill, you saying the LoNC cannot be false doesn’t preclude you from contradicting yourself anyways! I infer God’s existence b/c of the fact that us human sentient beings have a pre-commitment to be rational, as opposed to non-rational, which other animals could do. Do you account for this special behavior of yours by being created in God’s image (who has an eternal mind), or star dust (which the naturalstic guy on the Discovery channel says is our ancestor)?”

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Arguing TAG (Transcendental Argument of God) With Naturalistic Atheists

June 9, 2010


Here is a discussion I had with some atheists online where I argue for God’s existence using TAG (Transcendental Argument for God’s existence):

atheist: [talking to someone else] “I am an atheist who has lived his life well and tried to be a good human being, and you are saying that God in his almighty wisdom will send me to hell? Purely for not believing in something that has no evidence? If we are all God’s children he will forgive all non believers, but you clearly think he is some kind of vindictive bastard who will take joy in letting a good human being burn for all eternity?”

me: “You’re not critiquing Christianity or Scripture detours. You may be critiquing something, but it certainly isn’t Christianity. God doesn’t send you or anyone else to hell because you don’t believe, but because you’ve broken His law (you haven’t loved God and others perfectly). And without Yahweh, you can’t account for proof and evidence to begin with, that’s proof of His existence. Not everyone is “God’s child”. That’s no where in Scripture. The gospel is believe and repent to know if you are.”

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More On The Laws of Logic and John 1:1

May 20, 2009

laws of logic

Either the laws of logic are separate from God,

or

the laws of logic were created by God.”

Since John 1:1 says that “and God was the Logos”, thus what God is the Logos is (speaking of the Logos’ nature), this confirms me to believe that the laws of logic are neither axioms which exist as “forms” all by themselves (just as the Logos is not the Father), nor are the laws of logic created by God (just as the Logos is not “a god” created by the Father). Note: for the purposes of this thread, when I say “laws of logic” I am primarily referring to classical logic, and in particular the first law of identity.

But this is extremely profound!!! This philosophical issue which has perplexed countless people for centuries is answered in John 1:1. The very arguments which atheists, Clarkians, and others use to try and say that it must be either/or when accounting for the laws of logic (in particular the law of identity), have left out the only actual possibility: they are a reflection of God’s very own nature. This is not just something the Christian apologist says but can point to from Scripture itself!

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