I read these lame exercises in making excuses by theologians, and I don’t understand how anyone can be foolish enough to fall for them. The latest example is by Edward Tingley, who babbles on painfully about how believers are the true skeptics, the true scientists, while claiming that the believers have a deeper, stronger knowledge than mere atheists. Yet nowhere in his ramble does Tingley ever give any evidence or rational reason to believe in his god or any god — in fact, he triumphantly declares that there is no evidence — god exists, but (I can scarcely believe he makes this argument seriously) he’s hiding…hiding in such a way that only someone “muscled up with virtues” can see him. It’s the Emperor’s New Clothes argument all over again.
Even worse, how can we sense this evidence? We need to use a special instrument.
That instrument is the heart. “It is the heart which perceives God, and not the reason”. “The heart has its reasons, which reason does not know”. Pascal’s reasons of the heart are meant to take over from an intellect that operates on hard evidence but has run out of it. “The heart has its order, the mind has its own, which uses principles and demonstrations. The heart has a different one”.
It’s all fluff and nonsense. Tingley doesn’t have a skeptical or scientific neuron in his head, and it shows that he’s trying to think with a muscle.
Jeffrey Shallit takes this pretentious airhead down a few more notches. Somebody somewhere is going to have to someday point me to some intelligent arguments for gods, because I’ve sure never found them. And I know, someone is going to complain that I always pick on the weak arguments…while not bothering to tell me what the strong ones are.