The Importance of “I Don’t Know”


It’s something that theists have a hard time saying and a harder time understanding, the phrase “I don’t know”.  However, it is as close as they can ever get to their deity, thinking critically and rationally, which is why anyone who goes beyond that, who makes claims that they cannot support, is being automatically irrational and uncritical in their reasoning.

This came about in a discussion with a theist about science’s ability to demonstrate the supernatural, specifically, in this case, miracles.  He stated that science can, indeed, prove that miracles happen, simply by not being able to demonstrate that they come from natural causes.  In his mind, anything that cannot be shown to be natural is, by definition, supernatural.  I pointed out that he was wrong, all science can do is fail to come to a conclusion, it can never actually show that the supernatural exists, at best it can conclude that it has no current solution.  That is the same as saying “we just don’t know at the moment.”

The other question that I ask theists who are convinced that science or reason can lead us to the supernatural is, what would evidence of the supernatural look like?  If we found it, how would we know it was evidence of the supernatural?  They have no answers for that because they don’t have a clue.  Theists think that anything that has no other current natural explanation is automatically evidence for the supernatural but nothing could be further from the truth.  They don’t really know what such evidence for the supernatural might be, because to them, it really doesn’t matter.  They don’t need evidence. They don’t care about evidence.  Blind faith and empty claims are good enough for them.  So long as they feel good about it, it has to be real.  What if it isn’t?  That isn’t a question they’re even willing to entertain.

That’s why having rational discussions with theists is so difficult, we’re not even speaking the same language, nor are we following the same rules.  Having  beliefs that correspond to reality doesn’t matter to them.  They want reality to correspond to their beliefs, just the act of believing has to make it true, but only for them, that doesn’t apply to those evil heathens who believe other things.

What do we do about it?  I don’t know.  I just don’t know.

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