In his 1997 debate with William Lane Craig, Paul Draper considers seven lines of evidence and asks if they are more expected on theism or on naturalism. He argues that the meager moral fruits of theism, mind-brain dependence, evolution, the biological role of pain and pleasure, tragedies, divine silence during tragedies, and religious confusion are not what we would expect to find if theism were true. The world looks about as one would expect it to look if god did not exist.
Christians and atheists are both capable of accounting for what we observe. Certainty is not on the table. So what are we to do? According to Draper, we should ask: Is this fact likely given naturalism? Or is it surprising given naturalism? Is that datum to be expected on theism? Or is it not exactly what we would expect? Then we should survey the total evidence and see which worldview fares better overall.
Draper vs. Craig – 1997 [YouTube]
Paul Draper [Infidels.org]
Transcripts available at emersongreenblog.wordpress.com
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