Ann Gauger's latest salvo against Dennis Venema's arguments against an original pair of human beings


(Richard Wright) #478

Hi Phil,

I may have come across more, “nerved” than I really was.

Some things just aren’t amenable to be understood from studies, faith and alternative healthcare (AH) happen to be 2 of them. Simply put, the reality of my practice doesn’t match what studies find.

Another parallel between biblical Christianity and AH is that they’re spread by word of mouth (referrals) more than anything else.


#479

proof: "the cogency of evidence that compels acceptance by the mind of a truth or a fact "–Merriam Webster

Proof, in this context, is synonymous with a claim supported by evidence.[quote=“Jonathan_Burke, post:477, topic:36790”]
There’s a lengthy Christian tradition of religious faith as a rational assent based on evidence, and that’s within typical definitions found not only in dictionaries but also philosophical works, as opposed to fideism which is all about belief without (or even despite), evidence and rational thought.
[/quote]

I have yet to see any of those arguments stand up to scrutiny, but that is probably veering us way off topic, not to mention that this forum is not meant for arguing for or against the existence of God. I think we can agree to disagree on this one.


#480

The reason that the efficacy of prayer cannot be scientifically studied is that nobody can control for the actions of God. If a control group of sick people is not prayed for, that doesn’t rule out divine action. If anyone thinks that prayer somehow forces the hand of God, that is magic.


#481

Exactly. There is no proof that the patriarch Abraham was a real person, but that does not prove that he never lived.


(George Brooks) #482

@T_aquaticus

Mr. T,

I hate the way you frame the question… very irksome.

“…until there is evidence to back them.”

It’s irksome because that phrasing makes no acknowledgement of a gradient or continuum of information.
You always make it sound like a toggle switch. Innocence and Guilt in a murder trial is rarely a toggle either!
There’s an indefinable sliding continuum… along which people waver to the right or the left.

The task of the attorneys is to move the juror minds far enough in one direction that they can see, from their new vantage point, that they are definitely on the left or the right.

Faith is not two buckets… it is a tightrope…


(GJDS) #483

This discussion commenced with a case put by @Jon_Garvey, which provided evidence of a medical condition and information from Jon and his patient. I made the point that the evidence was true and this included the statement regarding faith.

If you believe Jon imagined the event, or “made it up” it is up to you to provide evidence for your “made up” hypothesis. If instead you believe Jon’s account is truthful, it is up to you to say so.

I cannot make it more clear than this.


(John Dalton) #484

I don’t see why it would be incumbent on me to do that. If I wished to definitively assert that the event did not occur, then it would be. Otherwise, I don’t see why I can’t simply disbelieve something that has all the characteristics of a belief.

I agree that people can hold beliefs based on evidence, call them faith if you like. If we’re not talking about something that can be proven, than it seems to me that it’s up to any other person to evaluate that evidence (if they care to) and decide whether to believe in turn or not believe.


(Jon) #485

It’s talking about a specific level of evidence; “the cogency of evidence that compels acceptance”. It is not saying “proof” and “evidence” are synonymous. Likewise, these definitions.

evidence sufficient to establish a thing as true, or to produce belief in its truth.

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/proof


1 evidence establishing a fact or the truth of a statement.

Catherine Soanes and Angus Stevenson, eds., Concise Oxford English Dictionary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004).


Proof is a fact, argument, or piece of evidence which shows that something is definitely true or definitely exists.

https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/proof_1


If we disagree that proof and evidence are synonymous, then I guess we disagree.


(GJDS) #486

We are all capable and free to believe or disbelieve what we wish - the discussion deals with a specific event, and the notion that the evidence related to that event was somehow “invalidated” because faith was part of the discussion.

I am simply stating what surely is self-evident; the event contains a great deal of data that is accepted as evidence. If you or others choose to disbelieve the account, or the evidence presented, than, if this is a rational discussion, it is incumbent of the protagonist to show how the evidence is invalid - otherwise I cannot see any basis for a discussion.

On the wider question of faith, we get back to the familiar point - how would someone who states an “absence of faith” be in a position to discuss faith?


(Richard Wright) #487

@Jonathan_Burke, @T_aquaticus

There is no evidence that God caused the healing. There is angiographic evidence of a sudden improvement in the patient’s heart condition. That improvement couldn’t be explained by known physiology. It is by faith that someone believes that God supernaturally caused the improvement, in an answer to prayers. It is also by faith that the materialist believes that there must be a physiological reason for the improvement. For the record, I believe that God caused the improvement.


(Jon) #488

Yes.

I haven’t seen that demonstrated.

Yes.

No.


(GJDS) #489

This where the difficulties may be found when theists and atheists decide there is some sort of conflict. Faith, as explained in Heb 11 includes hope and is also the evidence of things that are spiritual, and not sense based material data. So the evidence of God’s involvement is faith, and the hope is practiced by praying - but any outcome to the prayer is that of God’s grace - thus we hope God may answer prayer, and if an outcome conforms to that hope, we thank God for His grace and forgiveness of our sins. There is no suggestion that God replaces the doctor, nor that faith is equivalent to 25mgs of some medication.

I cannot see how anyone would seek evidence of God in any sense - God transcends His creation, and is not a material cause within it, or some magical substance that some may access, and claim healing as a result. The improvement of the patient would still be assessed by the doctor, and the reasons would conform to the usual medical tests.


(John Dalton) #490

Sure, what we wish, but if I were to disbelieve something that’s been proven, I’d be wrong. I don’t see how I could be judged wrong here based on the character of the evidence presented. I don’t see where anyone has used the word “invalidated” in the discussion; could you clarify?

I am simply stating what surely is self-evident; the event contains a great deal of data that is accepted as evidence. If you or others choose to disbelieve the account, or the evidence presented, than, if this is a rational discussion, it is incumbent of the protagonist to show how the evidence is invalid - otherwise I cannot see any basis for a discussion.

Indeed, there might not be a basis for discussion in that case. My point is that the bar for rebuttal of this evidence is very low. It was a one time event, and unverifiable assertions have been made about its cause. To accept the evidence is a matter of belief in itself. Disbelief is a rational position without further demonstration.

On the wider question of faith, we get back to the familiar point - how would someone who states an “absence of faith” be in a position to discuss faith?

I don’t see that that term has been used in this discussion either. However, absence of any particular characteristic wouldn’t seem to preclude one from discussing it.


(GJDS) #491

An account has been given by the people involved - I judge this account to be true so I believe it. You at times seem to disbelieve it, but claim you do not judge it to be true - this is the difficult part of this exchange.

If you disbelieve it, so be it - but otherwise your argument(s) seems irrational to me.

If you think someone is trying to change your disbelief, then and only then, you may seek any additional evidence that you need to change your disbelief into belief.

I cannot see anything else that needs to be discussed.


(Jon) #492

No he doesn’t disbelieve the account. He disbelieves certain conclusions some people are drawing from the account.


(GJDS) #493

The account consists of medical tests and diagnosis, and the person’s statement that his prayer was answered. The difficulty is for @John_Dalton and @T_aquaticus to admit to this - the discussion becomes impossibly difficult when the erroneous view is inserted, that of a specific event that is real to one person, is somehow generalised into atheistic notions on faith (which in itself appears as a contradiction).


(Jon) #494

No. They do “admit to this” (though “admit” is a misleading and loaded term). They have no difficulty acknowledging those facts.


(GJDS) #495

I am at a loss - what is your point? It is up to them to “admit” or "acknowledge’ the veracity or otherwise of the account. From your previous comment, you seem to agree with the original account.


(Jon) #496

My point is you’re misrepresenting them.

They already have, so you should stop claiming they haven’t. What they haven’t done is agree with you about what can legitimately be concluded from the account.


(GJDS) #497

Your participation in this exchange is odd, and now it is becoming offensive. The persons in question are able to speak for themselves - I do not want to indulge you any further.:rage: