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David Wood: Skepticism, real and fake

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Scooby-Doo and the Case of the Silly Skeptic (David Wood)

In “Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island,” the gang encounters real zombies and ghosts for the first time. But Fred explains away the evidence by appealing to increasingly absurd naturalistic explanations. In the end, even Fred recognizes that his explanations simply can’t account for the facts.

Atheists often call themselves “skeptics.” But when we consider the methodology they apply when questioning God’s existence, we find that the atheist’s methodology rules out all evidence for God’s existence even before considering what the evidence is.

In this video, David Wood uses some clips from “Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island” and some clips from his recent debate with Dr. Michael Shermer to show why it’s becoming impossible to take atheists seriously when they demand evidence for God’s existence.

Useful for many purposes beyond religion

7 Replies to “David Wood: Skepticism, real and fake

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    This video by David Wood is an excellent explanation of the selective skepticism that is constantly employed by atheists to deny any evidence for the reality of God. An argument which goes basically like this,,

    Step 1: Ask for evidence for God.
    Step 2: Sit back and deny that any evidence presented to you for God constitutes convincing evidence for you of God.
    Step 3: Repeat ad infinitum.

    I really like how David Wood, at the end of his video, turns that selective skepticism of atheists on its head and asked the atheist himself to prove that he himself existed.

    And although David Wood just sat back, as the atheist does with any evidence presented to him for God, and denied any evidence presented to him by the atheist constituted convincing evidence for him that the atheist really does exist, the fact of the matter is that if God does not really exist as a real person then the atheist himself, in fact, DOES NOT exist as a real person but is merely a neuronal illusion,,, even a zombie. That is to say, even though the atheists knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that he really exists as a real person, his own atheistic philosophy denies the possibility that he really exists as a real person. Atheists themselves, if they are honest with themselves about their philosophy, end up admitting that their naturalistic/materialistic philosophy cannot account for the reality of their own ‘personhood’.

    “(Daniel) Dennett concludes, ‘nobody is conscious … we are all zombies’.”
    J.W. SCHOOLER & C.A. SCHREIBER – Experience, Meta-consciousness, and the Paradox of Introspection – 2004

    “We have so much confidence in our materialist assumptions (which are assumptions, not facts) that something like free will is denied in principle. Maybe it doesn’t exist, but I don’t really know that. Either way, it doesn’t matter because if free will and consciousness are just an illusion, they are the most seamless illusions ever created. Film maker James Cameron wishes he had special effects that good.”
    Matthew D. Lieberman – neuroscientist – materialist – UCLA professor

    “The Astonishing Hypothesis is that “You,” your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules. As Lewis Carroll’s Alice might have phrased: “You’re nothing but a pack of neurons.” This hypothesis is so alien to the ideas of most people today that it can truly be called astonishing.”
    Francis Crick – Astonishing Hypothesis: The Scientific Search for the Soul (p. 3)

    “What you’re doing is simply instantiating a self: the program run by your neurons which you feel is “you.””
    Jerry Coyne

    The Confidence of Jerry Coyne – Ross Douthat – January 6, 2014
    Excerpt: then halfway through this peroration, we have as an aside the confession that yes, okay, it’s quite possible given materialist premises that “our sense of self is a neuronal illusion.” At which point the entire edifice suddenly looks terribly wobbly — because who, exactly, is doing all of this forging and shaping and purpose-creating if Jerry Coyne, as I understand him (and I assume he understands himself) quite possibly does not actually exist at all? The theme of his argument is the crucial importance of human agency under eliminative materialism, but if under materialist premises the actual agent is quite possibly a fiction, then who exactly is this I who “reads” and “learns” and “teaches,” and why in the universe’s name should my illusory self believe Coyne’s bold proclamation that his illusory self’s purposes are somehow “real” and worthy of devotion and pursuit? (Let alone that they’re morally significant:,,) Read more here:
    http://douthat.blogs.nytimes.c.....oyne/?_r=0

    “The neural circuits in our brain manage the beautifully coordinated and smoothly appropriate behavior of our body. They also produce the entrancing introspective illusion that thoughts really are about stuff in the world. This powerful illusion has been with humanity since language kicked in, as we’ll see. It is the source of at least two other profound myths: that we have purposes that give our actions and lives meaning and that there is a person “in there” steering the body, so to speak.”
    [A.Rosenberg, The Atheist’s Guide To Reality, Ch.9]

    Thus David Wood’s strategy of using the atheist’s own selective skepticism against God against the atheist himself, i.e. of being selectively skeptical of the atheist’s claim that he really is a real person, is far more devastating than David Wood let on in his video.,,, i.e. The atheist himself, by his unwavering adherence to naturalism, ends up denying the reality of his own existence even though he knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that he does, in fact, really exist as a real person.

    Moreover, many times leading atheists themselves, when they are honest, honestly admit that it is impossible for them to consistently live their life as if they did not really exist as real persons:

    Who wrote Richard Dawkins’s new book? – October 28, 2006
    Excerpt:
    Dawkins: What I do know is that what it feels like to me, and I think to all of us, we don’t feel determined. We feel like blaming people for what they do or giving people the credit for what they do. We feel like admiring people for what they do.,,,
    Manzari: But do you personally see that as an inconsistency in your views?
    Dawkins: I sort of do. Yes. But it is an inconsistency that we sort of have to live with otherwise life would be intolerable.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....02783.html

    Darwin’s Robots: When Evolutionary Materialists Admit that Their Own Worldview Fails – Nancy Pearcey – April 23, 2015
    Excerpt: Even materialists often admit that, in practice, it is impossible for humans to live any other way.,,,
    When I teach these concepts in the classroom, an example my students find especially poignant is Flesh and Machines by Rodney Brooks, professor emeritus at MIT. Brooks writes that a human being is nothing but a machine — a “big bag of skin full of biomolecules” interacting by the laws of physics and chemistry. In ordinary life, of course, it is difficult to actually see people that way. But, he says, “When I look at my children, I can, when I force myself, … see that they are machines.”
    Is that how he treats them, though? Of course not: “That is not how I treat them…. I interact with them on an entirely different level. They have my unconditional love, the furthest one might be able to get from rational analysis.” Certainly if what counts as “rational” is a materialist worldview in which humans are machines, then loving your children is irrational. It has no basis
    within Brooks’s worldview. It sticks out of his box.
    How does he reconcile such a heart-wrenching cognitive dissonance? He doesn’t. Brooks ends by saying, “I maintain two sets of inconsistent beliefs.” He has given up on any attempt to reconcile his theory with his experience. He has abandoned all hope for a unified, logically consistent worldview.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95451.html

    The Heretic – Who is Thomas Nagel and why are so many of his fellow academics condemning him? – March 25, 2013
    Excerpt:,,,Fortunately, materialism is never translated into life as it’s lived. As colleagues and friends, husbands and mothers, wives and fathers, sons and daughters, materialists never put their money where their mouth is. Nobody thinks his daughter is just molecules in motion and nothing but; nobody thinks the Holocaust was evil, but only in a relative, provisional sense. A materialist who lived his life according to his professed convictions—understanding himself to have no moral agency at all, seeing his friends and enemies and family as genetically determined robots—wouldn’t just be a materialist: He’d be a psychopath.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....tml?page=3

    In what should be needless to say, if it is impossible for you to consistently live your life as if your worldview were actually true then your worldview cannot possibly reflect reality as it really is but your worldview must instead be based on a delusion.

    Existential Argument against Atheism – November 1, 2013 by Jason Petersen
    1. If a worldview is true then you should be able to live consistently with that worldview.
    2. Atheists are unable to live consistently with their worldview.
    3. If you can’t live consistently with an atheist worldview then the worldview does not reflect reality.
    4. If a worldview does not reflect reality then that worldview is a delusion.
    5. If atheism is a delusion then atheism cannot be true.
    Conclusion: Atheism is false.
    http://answersforhope.com/exis.....t-atheism/

    Moreover, although the atheist’s own philosophy provides the rope for the atheist’s own hanging, it is not as if we do not have compelling physical, scientific, evidence for a transcendent component to our being. i.e. Scientific evidence verifying ‘the necessary soul of our own personhood’:

    “You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.”
    George MacDonald – Annals of a Quiet Neighborhood – 1892
    Evidence to that effect

    Scientific Evidence That We Do Indeed Have A Soul (Elaboration on Stephen Talbott’s question “What power holds off that moment — precisely for a lifetime, and not a moment longer?”)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2P45Obl4lQ&list=PLtAP1KN7ahiYxgYCc-0xiUAhNWjT4q6LD&index=2

    Verse:

    Mark 8:37
    “Is anything worth more than your soul?”

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    Existential Argument against Atheism – November 1, 2013 by Jason Petersen
    1. If a worldview is true then you should be able to live consistently with that worldview.

    Where a worldview makes claims about the observable universe, they may be true or false depending on their correspondence with what is observed. Where moral judgements or opinions are involved, they are neither true nor false.

    Furthermore, since human knowledge and experience is necessarily incomplete, imperfect and sometimes inconsistent so is any worldview founded on it. We all live within worldviews that are flawed to that extent. The ability to function within a flawed worldview is not necessarily a test of its consistency.

    2. Atheists are unable to live consistently with their worldview.

    Yes, they can. I can answer one assertion with another

    3. If you can’t live consistently with an atheist worldview then the worldview does not reflect reality.

    See above. There is no such thing as a worldview that is a perfect reflection of reality yet we still manage to live within what we’ve got.

    4. If a worldview does not reflect reality then that worldview is a delusion.

    Worldviews are often messy compilations of knowledge and beliefs, some true, some false, some neither. Some parts may be delusional. Does that make the whole thing delusional? No, not necessarily?

    5. If atheism is a delusion then atheism cannot be true.

    Technically, atheism is a lack of belief in a god so it cannot be a delusion. On the other hand, unshakeable belief in a god for which there is no compelling evidence could be a delusion.

    I think Petersen’s argument needs some work.

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, you act as if you really are a real person that is making logically sound arguments that were freely arrived at by your free will. i.e. Arguments that were logically arrived at by the truthfulness, or falsity, of the arguments propositions. Yet, your atheistic worldview itself denies that you really are a real person with free will. You need to stop living inconsistently within your worldview so as to prove to us that you actually can live consistently within your worldview! 🙂

    Repeat over and over if it helps: I am a neuronal illusion with no free will,,,
    I am a neuronal illusion with no free will,,,
    I am a neuronal illusion with no free will,,,
    I am a neuronal illusion with no free will,,,

    🙂

    Good luck in your endeavour to become a non-existent illusion with no free will!

    🙂

    of note:

    Sam Harris’s Free Will: The Medial Pre-Frontal Cortex Did It – Martin Cothran – November 9, 2012
    Excerpt: There is something ironic about the position of thinkers like Harris on issues like this: they claim that their position is the result of the irresistible necessity of logic (in fact, they pride themselves on their logic). Their belief is the consequent, in a ground/consequent relation between their evidence and their conclusion. But their very stated position is that any mental state — including their position on this issue — is the effect of a physical, not logical cause.
    By their own logic, it isn’t logic that demands their assent to the claim that free will is an illusion, but the prior chemical state of their brains. The only condition under which we could possibly find their argument convincing is if they are not true. The claim that free will is an illusion requires the possibility that minds have the freedom to assent to a logical argument, a freedom denied by the claim itself. It is an assent that must, in order to remain logical and not physiological, presume a perspective outside the physical order.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....66221.html

  4. 4
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Sev

    Where moral judgements or opinions are involved, they are neither true nor false.

    The claim that all human behavior is determined by physical/chemical processes is either true or false.

    If all behavior is determined by molecular processes then there is no moral decision-making. There is no learning or reason for argumentation and reasoning about things.

    But even the people who believe such a thing to be true, do not live consistently with that belief.

  5. 5
    Phinehas says:

    This was a great video. Thank you for bringing it to my attention!

  6. 6
    Daniel King says:

    That was an inane video. Thank you for demonstrating the silliness of theism.

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    “That was an inane video. Thank you for demonstrating the silliness of theism.”

    Said the illusion by no will of its own!

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