As the first basic precept of religion, proving the existence of a supernatural realm should be at the top of the believer’s list of things to do. It should come before any other arguments, because if the supernatural does not exist, nothing in their religion is true. Given the very definition of immaterial, acceptable evidence for may never surface. This leaves argument as the only tool one can use to justify belief, but the arguments I have heard make flawed assumptions.
- Some mysterious or unknown feature of our universe (before the big bang, beauty in nature, physical laws, complexity of life). Things that are unknown are unknown. The ignorance of a cause for something does not make it magic. Things like the stars, the weather, and disease used to be thought to have supernatural causes.
- The existence of morality and of abstract ideas and concepts in our brains as being separate from our physical reality. Every one of those thoughts, ideas and concepts we have we have — including morality (view video in previous post) — is a result of known physical processes in a physical brain.
- The authority of the Bible. What if the only evidence for evolution was a book, and not all that observation, experiment, and not the independent lines of verification from geology, paleontology, botany, zoology, biogeography, comparative anatomy and physiology, genetics, molecular biology, developmental biology, embryology, population genetics, genome sequencing, and many other sciences?
Skeptics of the supernatural have often been called “closed-minded," and accused of bias towards a particular world-view. This is an disingenuous thing to say. Anyone can agree that it is not close-minded to require evidence for beliefs. If you can’t provide the evidence for something, you shouldn’t malign those who don't believe it. How can you blame them for not believing you? If your position takes faith to begin with, you cannot expect others to follow suit. But more to the point, if your position takes faith to believe it, maybe you shouldn’t have so much confidence in your position.