Once more, I venture into the realm of the obvious.
We atheists are often asked about meaning. How do we find meaning in life without God? For an atheist, what is the meaning of life? For me, the answer to that is pretty simple: meaning is personal. There is no inherent meaning to anything; something only has meaning to the extent that it means something to someone. When asked, “What does it mean?” one can reply, “What does it mean to whom?”
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It’s the middle of June and I’m still not used to the light. It was about 11pm and I glanced down the hall into the living room and I thought maybe I’d left on a light or the TV or something, so I checked. No, everything was off but the blinds were open. I was seeing light from the sun that had set but was not very far below the horizon. Maybe my perception of light as it relates to time of day at this time of year has been messed up by how cold and wet this year’s spring weather has been.
Well, Nik Wallenda successfully completed his wire walk across Niagara Falls. He admitted to feeling like a “jackass” for wearing the safety harness, which ABC reportedly required him to wear as part of the broadcast contract. He accomplished the crossing by his own will, painstakingly-honed skill, and strength. I think it’s unfortunate that he needed to fool himself into thinking that the non-existent “God” had something to do with it.
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence: always? Maybe not.
I think that, sometimes, the lack of evidence in favour of a positive assertion does constitute evidence against that assertion. For example, the Noahic flood cannot have happened as described in Genesis because, if it had, there would be clear evidence of it. There is none – and there has been quite a lot of investigation into the available evidence.
We can do the same regarding claims of the existence of God, depending on the god-concept being put forward. If the claim is for a God that intervenes in the world in such a way that those interventions can be detected, then there should be good evidence of such interventions (there is none).
Continue reading “Absence of Evidence is not Evidence of Absence?”