Absence of evidence as an argument against atheism.

Atheists claim that (1) absence of evidence is evidence of absence. There is no evidence that there is/are no god/gods, therefore they claim that (2) those claiming the negative/non-existence/absence, don’t require a burden of proof. I disagree with 2, but am happy to accept it, for now. I am reasonably happy to accept 1 since that’s probably why we don’t believe in trolls; goblins or fairies, but with something supernatural, or out of this world, it can’t really be argued as valid. Also, when atheists are presented with evidence, they reject it for not being proof, which is disingenuous, since evidence & proof aren’t the same thing. But for the sake of discussion, I’ll meet atheists on their terms, & then insist they stick to them.

In order for atheism to be valid, there’d have to be an origin for the idea that there is/are a god/gods. So I claim, (3) there is no origin for the idea that there is/are god/gods. 3 requires no burden of proof due to 2, the only origin ever given is that people invented it, since all early records of human civilisation show theistic beliefs, there is no evidence that any pre-theistic civilisations existed, so by 1, no pre-theistic civilisations existed, therefore people couldn’t have invented the idea of the existence of a god/gods. 3 is then valid unless the atheist rejects either 1 or 2. If the atheist rejects 1, then evidence for gods existence is unnecessary, & the debate ends without solution, this adds to uncertainty, & therefore agnosticism is more reasonable than atheism. If the atheist rejects 2, atheism is invalid due to 1. Both are required for the absence of evidence argument to remain valid.

Obviously, (4) anything that has no origin must have always existed, this is true a priory. Therefore (5) the idea that a god/gods exist has always existed, which is the modus ponens deduction from 4 & 3. But (6) ideas are products of minds, this is true a priory, therefore (7) if an idea exists, since the existence of an idea is dependant of the existence of a mind, not the other way around. Therefore, (8) a mind has always existed, is the modus ponens deduction from 7 & 5.

Since even atheists accept that the universe is finite, based on the acceptance of an expanding universe, then (9) the universe hasn’t always existed. Of course (10) something that has always existed pre exists things that haven’t always existed, is true a priory. Therefore, (11) a mind pre existed the universe, is the modus ponens deduction from 10 & 8.

The idea of a mind pre-existing the universe is entirely theistic, & such an entity would be called a deity. Thus the absence of evidence argument can be used to argue for a deity and is thus invalid as it can support both sides. The weakest premise is 3 which is supported by 1 & 2, which are fundamentals of the absence of evidence argument for atheism, therefore to reject it would make the original argument invalid.

Basically, the absence of evidence argument is not a useful argument as it’s premises can be used to reject atheism. My disclaimer: this argument doesn’t prove a god any more than the absence of evidence proves there is no god, but that’s the point, if this is a bad argument, then so is the absence of evidence argument against the existence of God.


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