Tag: Evidence

False arguments? – the unfriendly universe

In the discussions and arguments between believers and sceptics on the internet, you’ll find a number of arguments and statements recurring. Many of them are presented as if they are telling blows for their proponents, without necessarily ever being argued logically. I have discussed the Carl Sagan claim “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence“, and now […]

Sam Harris on faith – sensible or silly?

I came across an interesting blog recently – Think That Through – where Steven had posted on the topic of What’s up with faith?. Steven is an atheist, and his post was discussing his objections to what he understands to be religious faith. The blog is worth reading, and Steve encourages polite discussion even from […]

Climate change, lies and statistics

I don’t get mad all that often these days – perhaps I’m getting too old and tired for that – but some of the climate change sceptics are really getting my goat. It’s not that I think believing in human-induced global warming is the only conclusion we can come to – there are, after all, […]

Is christianity just cultural?

But what is certain is …. that humans believe only the irrational tales of their own culture, not those of others Adele Mercier I hear it a lot these days. “People only believe in christianity because they were born into a christian culture.” “If you were born in Mecca, you’d be a Muslim.” “No religion […]

Science, faith and certainty

In many people’s minds, there is no argument. Science is based on evidence and can give us close to certainty; faith is not based on anything and is a delusion – believers may say they are certain but they cannot be. But there is a problem for this view – what do we make of […]

Archaeology and Jesus

Archaeology can tell us a lot about the world of first century Palestine, where Jesus lived, and this is a great help in understanding the New Testament. But can it tell us much about one of the most basic questions of all: are the New Testament gospels accurate accounts of Jesus’ life, based on eyewitnesses? […]

John Dickson on why people believe things

People may hold their political, religious or ethical beliefs for all sorts of reasons, but we all like to think that we are very rational in the way we come to our own views. But some recent studies suggest few of us are as logical as we might think, as historian John Dickson reported in […]

ECREE: Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence?

“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence!” Ever since Carl Sagan said it, this aphorism (often abbreviated to the acronym ECREE) has been used to critique claims of miracles or the paranormal. It sounds neat and logical, and it can help you feel you have the ‘high logical ground’, but is it true?

Is it natural to believe in God?

We all like to think we make good choices for good reasons. Those who believe in God like to think they are right in their belief, whereas atheists think believers are mistaken, sometimes even ‘delusional’. Some atheists would like to see all God-belief eliminated because they believe it does so much harm. Yet new scientific […]