David Roberston quote
I am reading Robertson’s The Dawkins Letters: Challenging Atheist Myths. Thought this quote from one of his letters to Dawkins was very interesting:
“Do you seriously think the evidence for the God of the Bible is on the same level as the tooth fairy? You have not, for example, written a book on the Tooth Fairy Delusion. The evidence for God is on a completely different level. I suspect you know that but again in your rhetorical style the sound-bite put-down works so much better. Let me put it another way – if the only evidence that existed for Jesus Christ was the same as that which exists for the Flying Spaghetti Monster then I and millions of others would not believe in him.” p51.
The idea seems to be that if lots of people believe something, well then the evidence for what they believe must be, if not conclusive, then at least much better than that for e.g. the tooth fairy.
(i) I don’t remember Dawkins denying Jesus Christ existed.
(ii) When it comes to supernatural, paranormal type claims, the fact that loads of people believe something does not indicate that the evidence for what they believe must be reasonably good. Millions believe they’ve been abducted by aliens. Millions believe in astrology and psychic powers. And of course millions – hundreds of millions – of Christians believe the entire universe is 6,000 years old.
(iii) Dawkins even comes up with some interesting explanations for why people will hold religious belief whether or not there’s any evidence for theism.
There may be devastating critiques of Dawkins but this isn’t one.