I often find myself involved in debates of a scientific nature. Which is amusing, as I’m not a scientist, and 99.999% of the time neither is the person I’m debating. So why do I do it? Well, being an atheist, I’m expected to have knowledge of the scientific explanations for the formation of the universe and the occurrence of life.
Which, let me tell you, is really annoying. Luckily I happen to enjoy reading about science. Had that not been the case, the long and arduous process of trying to understand things like evolution or abiogenesis would be too much to bear.
So I take my limited knowledge onto stickam, or YouTube, or in real life and I engage in debates with (more often than not) Christians and other believers. I don’t claim to have all knowledge, or to get everything right, but I have a slightly better than basic understanding of these things. And if I can help someone else understand, I will.
The sense I get from a good majority of the people I debate, however, is interesting. You would think that their goal in talking me would either be to convince me of their explanation for the universe, or to understand my side. But that’s not what I get from them. What happens is they try as hard as they can to disprove whatever scientific subject I may be on at the time.
Why is that?
It’s simple, really. They think that disproving the Big Bang, or evolution, or abiogenesis will somehow prove their side correct.
Confusing, isn’t it? Confusing and, I’m sorry to say, quite wrong.
From a believer’s perspective, or at least the perspective of some of them, existence is ‘either/or’. Either their god is the truth, the way, and the cause of everything…or he isn’t. So they expect science to work the same way.
They think that if they disprove the Big Bang, then the only other option is that their god did it. They think if they disprove evolution, then the only other option is that god made it happen. But they miss a step.
So to all Christians and other believers out there, listen up! I’m going to help you out here. Disproving the Big Bang is not enough! You actually have to show evidence for your side. You have to back up your claims with more than the authority of scripture.
Because even if it turned out tomorrow that evolution was false, the Big Bang never happened and abiogenesis was a hoax, you would still have to back up your own ideas with evidence. My atheism does not rise and fall on the accuracy of the Big Bang. So by all means, argue against it, show contrary evidence and disprove it if you can.
At the end of the day I’ll smile, doff my cap, and ask where your evidence is.