Actually and somewhat interestingly, I think it's a bit more nuanced than that. The old axiom that "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence" is true but what is meant by "extraordinary" isn't simply "a lot" but a quality difference as well. There is some arcane debate out there as to what would convince an ardent atheist there is a God. And some folks claim "well if God came down and talked to me", but others have rightfully noted that somethings like left-temporal lobe epilepsy can cause that exact heterophenomenon and it might well be a better conclusion that you are simply having an exceptionally vivid hallucination (as many are), rather than God is really talking to you. So then where does that leave the proposition?
The problem here is that a lot of evidence is different than extraordinary. You really need an explanation that explains everything. And to the above question I think a satisfactory answer is that if I woke up from a matrix like game designed and executed by God, upon waking I quickly regain my real memories and understand the physics of the real universe are nothing like the massive multiplayer networked video game that is all of this universe and that real physics were completely different than the physics of Earth. Such evidence would be substantially more extraordinary than something claiming to be God coming around and showing off what could be super-advanced alien technology on Earth. Extraordinary doesn't mean a lot of additional evidence to the contrary but something that could actually overthrow everything we think we know about the universe.
Sunday, July 24, 2011
What would prove to you that there is a God?
>>I think the strength of evidence required to falsify a claim depends on the amount of evidence extant.