An Inability To Deal With Truth?

Posted by on September 13, 2011 in Quick Note | 6 comments

The Craig vs Kagan debate has had my head spinning a bit today. People say that Craig is the best debater on the topic of religion, and yet all I see from him, again and again and again, is an inability to deal with concepts beyond God. He makes big jumps logic from one idea to the next, and constantly says he can’t see how such-and-such can be the case if there is no God.

I can see how this might be a difficult proposition for someone who has already decided that God is at the root of all things, but to debate people like this is futile. Or is it?

I’d like to think that arguing with people like Craig in a public forum will give people the chance to see what the best of both sides of the argument have to offer, and that they, the audience, will be able to make up their own minds based on the best argument presented. But for people like Craig, there will be no changing of mind or tact, for he is so bound to his ideas that no new ideas can get through.

When you approach a topic like “Is God necessary for morality” of course both sides will already have a preconceived idea of what they want that answer to be, but the difference between Craig and Kagan, for instance, is that Kagan’s understandings are plastic and malleable, able to change when the information is compelling enough, while Craig’s ideas seem to be so rigidly fixed in place that he hasn’t changed his basic argument for years. Is this an inability to deal with the truth of a situation, or is it a pigheadedness that disallows him the ability to reason through ideas? There are many ideas that have been presented to him that still allow for the presence of a God-being, which is what he wants the truth to be, and yet he sticks to his scripture based dogma, like an unwavering blade of grass in a windstorm, all the while denying the wind that is pounding over him.

After watching a few of his debates, I’m sorry but I can’t take Craig seriously anymore. He sticks his fingers in his ears and says “But why? But why? But why?” without any intention of listening to a reasoned and rational response.

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6 Comments

  1. I watched the Harris/Lane debate and walked away with the distinct feeling that Lane is totally overrated.

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  2. When Craig says “Murder is wrong in all possible worlds, because of the harm it causes to others.” I feel the exact same way about religion. It is harmful to humanity therefore should be unacceptable to humanity. It is why humanity accepts it at all, that is utterly illogical and confusing.

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  3. Have you watched the recent debate between Peter Singer and John Lennox? I have the same impression of Lennox as I do WLC. Neither of them seem capable for honestly and objectively evaluating another person’s position, resorting to the same old tired apologetics: we can understand the universe therefore god, the universe is complex therefore god, we don;t all kill each other therefor god. It is tiring playing whack-a-mole with these people, but necessary.

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  4. ” Faith doth that to people!” Fr.Griggs
    Haught declares that faith envelopes ones whole being, and McGrath maintains that first one has evidence ,applying faith for certitude, but both mean a rigidity to other ideas. William James will to believe is the same.
    We skeptics,following Clffird, find that we proportion our beliefs to the evidence [not that Jamesian straw man, so beloved of Keith Ward] to engage in something tentatively. No faith is thus needed, and actually contradicts the truth!
    Martin, you might flesh this out!
    Ifind advanced theologians faithful to tripe as much as any other theorlogian!

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  5. Kagan, to his credit, had the ability in that discussion to show where Craig’s argument became contradictory. I’ve listened to a few debates, and very few call Craig out.

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  6. I’ve always found that Craig is ready, willing, and able to listen to reasonable* arguments, and is more than willing to change his mind based on such arguments.

    * reasonable here being defined as “in perfect agreement with Craigs own arguments.”

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