*I had to resubmit this post because of formatting issues. I apologize for the lost comments.
The popular idea that atheistic assumptions only stem from an unbiased, critical, and scientific examination of the world is misleading and inaccurate. Most advocates of the atheistic worldview maintain that they are defenders of “free thought” in our culture. They call themselves scientists, and brag of being led by the facts to the conclusion of atheism. They suggest that any view contrary to theirs is full of biased presuppositions that ultimately skew the facts and prejudice the observations. According to an atheistic worldview, anyone who attempts to expalin reality from a theistic point of view is hopelessly painting a picture of the world that is false. They accuse theists
of allowing religion to undermine free, critical, and supposedly unbiased reflection on the true nature of reality. Of course, a theist’s belief in the existence of God is an assumption that, at times, may prejudice his examination of the evidence. However, the atheist’s views are likewise not exempt from biased presuppositional committments. In support of this idea, consider the following statement by prominent atheist Richard Lewontin. He writes:
Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, inspite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior committment, a commitment to materialism…Moreover, materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a divine foot in the door.
The atheist’s boast that his quest for truth is untainted by religious presuppositions is ultimately a farce. Atheism claims to be true as a result of an unbiased examinationof the facts of reality, but if truth be told, it is presuppositionally committed to faith in the naturalistic worldview. Consider the words of the atheist, Dr. George Wald, former professor of biology at Harvard Univ. and the recipient of the 1971 Nobel Prize in biology. Regarding the fundamental principle of biology that life never comes form non-life, He states:
When it comes to the origin of life, we have only two possibilities as to how life arose. One is spontaneous generation arising to evolution; the other is a supernatural creative act of God. There is no third possibility…spontaneous generation was scientifically disproved one hundered years ago by Louis Pasteur, Spellanzani, Reddi, and others. That leads us scientifically to only one conclusion- that life arose as a supernatural creative act of God…I will not accept that philosophically because I do not want to believe in God. Therefore, I choose to believe in that which I know is scientifically impossible, spontaneous generation arising to evolution.
These qoutations epitomize and demonstrate that an atheist’s conclusions can be prejudiced by his prior philosophical commitments just like everybody else. The claim to be the only unbiased and critical evaluators of reality is simply untrue. In fact, as the following post will reveal, belief in the non-existence of God takes more faith from the start than belief in His existence.
The next post will uncover atheism’s fatal flaw…