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Re: "Thinks" and "Believes in"

  • Subject: Re: "Thinks" and "Believes in"
  • From: Roy Schestowitz <newsgroups@schestowitz.com>
  • Date: Fri, 08 Jul 2005 00:25:04 +0100
  • Newsgroups: uk.philosophy.atheism
  • Organization: schestowitz.com / Manchester University
  • References: <d96lnl$1kgc$1@godfrey.mcc.ac.uk> <11bg87un8pos015@news.supernews.com> <jfagb15mdovpqq9pqdp8bn7eb1arcpdn3r@4ax.com> <11c6a27flkc0dd@news.supernews.com> <42c4300e$1_1@mk-nntp-1.news.uk.worldonline.com> <dai7u8$1gqt$1@godfrey.mcc.ac.uk> <42cd83ff$1_2@mk-nntp-1.news.uk.worldonline.com>
  • Reply-to: newsgroups@schestowitz.com
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John Brockbank wrote:

> <  If you say that beliefs and the existence of God is something that
> can't be
> determined, then you could say the same about Santa. There is some remote
> chance that Santa rides his invisible sleigh. >
> Well actually there is a difference.  To be specific about it depends on
> what attributes Santa is supposed to have, but if they include the fact
> that he has a physical body and lives in a particular place then it should
> be possible (for the sake of argument anyway as I am sure you will allow)
> to search and verify that he is not anywhere on Earth. There is other
> evidence
> as well:  he appears to omit from his present giving, Indian children.  No
> doubt you can think of more evidence. If you can't, then you will have a
> lot of explaining to do to me about why he has never given my two
> wonderful
> children a single present.  It is possible that one could, if one were to
> do the investigation fully, end up able to say 'I think that there is
> enough
> evidence for us to conclude that Santa does not exist'.  Now of course the
> Santa Claus creationists would be able to then simply change the
> attributes, as in 'actually he might live on the moon and he does not give
> the children of non-believers presents' - however, that is a different
> Santa. It would be possible for someone to give Santa attibutes (living in
> another galaxy, able to travel instantly, able to do any magic at all)
> which would
> end up rendering a total lack of possibility of any Santa evidence.  The
> situation then ends up the same as for God - it makes no difference
> whether or not he exists, in other words it is exactly as if he does not
> exist. If someone wants to believe in Santa in the hope that if they do,
> one day he will bring them a present, that is OK with me, though I would
> probably suggest that if they want something then it is a good idea to
> save up a little money to buy it.

Actually, it is possible to say that just as Santa omits certain ethnic
groups from his present giving, so does God. Your average creationist will
say that God has something positive in mind when choosing to do so. This is
an entire contradiction whereby God does positive deeds but when something
horrific happens, that's somehow flipped upside-down to show a positive
side. That is just a denfence mechanism to one who believes. It is pretty
much like saying that the dog bites you because he needs to be fed, which
somehow justifies a brutal attack on a child.


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