Is Belief in God Justified by Anecdotal Evidence?

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In summary, the conversation was about a debate between a friend planning to become a priest and a mathematics student regarding the justification for believing in a god. The student was unable to counter his friend's argument that belief in a god is just as valid as belief in the existence of the universe. However, there are guidelines in place to ensure that discussions about religion remain neutral and do not devolve into disputes. Administrators and mentors retain the right to take action in such discussions at their discretion.
  • #1
Dumbfish1
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I've been debating (In a pub, where all of life's problems are solved) with a friend of mine, who's planning on becoming a priest after he finishes university, on his justification for believing in a god. He admitted that he had no proof for the existence of a god that isn't anecdotal, but that since we can't know anything absolutely for certain other than that thoughts exist, my belief in the existence of a universe is just as unfounded as his belief in a god, that they were both equally valid theories.

I'm a mere Mathematics student, so I'm not that well versed in philosophical arguments and I was unable to counter him, but something about his point dosn't sit right with me. I was wondering if any of you had counter arguments, or wether his point was valid.
 
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I am almost certain this violates guidelines.

Religious Discussion Guidelines:
Discussions that assert the a priori truth or falsity of religious dogmas and belief systems, or value judgments stemming from such religious belief systems, will not be tolerated. As a rule of thumb, some topics pertaining to religion might be permissible if they are discussed in such a way so as to remain neutral on the truth of, or value judgments stemming from, religious belief systems. However, it is essential to use good judgment whenever discussing religious matters to ensure that the discussion does not degenerate into a messy dispute. If in doubt, err on the side of caution.

Because of the complexity and ambiguity of this subject matter, there are no hard and fast moderation rules that apply over all possible cases. Ultimately, it is up to the administrators and mentors to decide what is appropriate and what is not on a case-by-case basis. Discuss religious matters at your own risk: Administrators and mentors retain the right to lock or delete any religious thread or post at any time without warning or explanation. All administrator and mentor action taken with regard to religious discussions will be final and will not be up for dispute.
 
  • #3
As Dave has already mentioned this thread doesn't fit the guidelines, nor does it fit the rules for posting in philosophy which are posted at the top of the philosophy forum.
 

1. What evidence is there to support the belief in God?

As a scientist, I approach this question from a scientific standpoint. In terms of empirical evidence, there is no concrete proof of the existence of a higher being. However, for many people, their belief in God is based on personal experiences or faith. It is ultimately a matter of individual interpretation and belief.

2. Can science and religion coexist?

This is a debated topic and ultimately depends on one's perspective. Some argue that science and religion are at odds with each other, as religion is based on faith and belief while science relies on evidence and experimentation. However, others believe that science and religion can complement each other, as they both seek to understand the world and our place in it.

3. What about evolution and creationism?

Evolution and creationism are often seen as conflicting ideas, but they can also coexist depending on one's beliefs. The theory of evolution is supported by scientific evidence, while creationism is based on religious beliefs. Some people believe in both, viewing evolution as the mechanism through which God created life.

4. Is it possible to prove or disprove the existence of God?

From a scientific perspective, it is not possible to prove or disprove the existence of God. Scientific methods and experiments are not designed to test for the existence of a higher being. Therefore, the question of God's existence is ultimately a matter of personal belief and faith.

5. How can we explain the presence of suffering and evil in the world if there is a benevolent God?

This question, known as the problem of evil, is a philosophical and theological debate that has been discussed for centuries. Some argue that suffering and evil are a result of free will and the imperfection of humans, while others believe it is part of God's plan and serves a greater purpose. Ultimately, the answer to this question is subjective and based on one's beliefs.

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