I thought it deserved to be repeated.
I don’t see — I can’t see — how some theists and non-theists can be so “zero-concession” about evidence. Why can’t we be honest? Life is too short for this sort of crap. For my part, I want all the help I can get in the search for truth, whether the cooperation and collaboration comes from theists or non-theists.
A message to my non-theistic buddies with full sincerity and respect: prima facie, the universe is a contingent being; prima facie, the fundamental constants are fine-tuned so as to permit the emergence of life; prima facie, consciousness is not reducible to any standard account of the physical. Taken together, they can legitimately used to offer decent support to the hypothesis of theism. Maybe you could add the Moreland/Reppert argument from reason — I don’t know enough about the relevant literature to pretend to know. Against this backdrop, it makes sense to talk about the principle of credulity and religious experience. This isn’t shabby inductive or abductive support for some form of theism.
A message to my theistic buddies, with full sincerity and respect: prima facie, the quantity, variety, duration, intensity, and distribution of suffering is unjustified; prima facie, the diverse religions are incompatible with one another; prima facie, it’s pretty ambiguous whether or not at least one god exists, and what such a god or gods are like. Taken together, this isn’t shabby inductive or abductive support for some sort of non-theistic picture of the universe.
Starting from here, admitting to each other our worries about our one’s own position, as well as the strenghts of our friendly interlocutor’s position, let’s work together to get closer to the truth: no enemies; only collaborators in the exciting search for truth.
Points of agreement
I agree with pretty much all he says here. I agree there are arguments both ways, and I agree that it would be better if those of us on different sides could see ourselves as working together “in the exciting search for truth” – even if we think we know the truth, I doubt any of us thinks we know all the truth!
The only difference I have is with his assessment of the balance of the arguments. I think there are arguments from experience, miracles, ethics, reason and Jesus which he doesn’t mention, and I don’t find the argument about diverse religions at all strong. So I believe in the end that the reasons to believe are definitely stronger than the reasons to disbelieve. (For more on this, see Why believe?.)
But I can respect those who think differently.