What is not evidence!

Friday, 22 October 2010 01:23 by salim

In most discussions that I have with people of fervent religiosity, one thing that frustrates me is the lack of basic understanding of what constitutes as evidence. So, today I found this gem of a list in the comment section of a blog. It is a pretty comprehensive list of types arguments usually used from the religious people to defend their faith.

Allegations are not evidence.
Hearsay is not evidence.
Unsubstantiated claims are not evidence.
Personal revelation is not evidence.
Anecdotes are not evidence.
Rumors are not evidence.
Wild speculation is not evidence.
Wishful thinking is not evidence.
Illogical conclusions are not evidence.
Disproved statements are not evidence.
Logical fallacies are not evidence.
Poorly designed/executed experiments are not evidence.
Experiments with inconclusive results are not evidence.
Experiments that are not and cannot be duplicated by others are not evidence.
Dreams are not evidence.
Hallucinations/delusions are not evidence.
Experiments whose methodology is not open for scrutiny are not evidence.
Data that requires a certain belief is not evidence.
Information that is only knowable by a privileged few is not evidence.
Information that cannot be falsified is not evidence.
Information that cannot be verified is not evidence.
Information that is ambiguous is not evidence.

Now, only if everybody play nice and follow these basic principles. I am not very optimistic. Because, if the theists, especially the fanatical one used any kind of logic and rationality, they will find their own arguments crumble like dry Puttu

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