Is Belief in God Reasonable? My opening speech

I’ve recently come to realize that when theists ask us to believe in god, this is actually a secondary request. Their first demand is that we believe in *them* ( then what they say about god is vouchsafed by our acceptance of their credibility and veracity).

There is no reasonable way to accede to this without surrender of our critical faculties. Refuse this and demand evidence, and all we get are smokescreen obfuscations.

Enquiries on Atheism

[Introductions and thanks for the invite to speak]

Let me tell you how this evening is going to go: a lot of statements are going to be made. That seems very much to be the nature of debates. A lot of those statements I am going to disagree with. Each statement I disagree with I am going to ask for evidence or a reasoned explanation for. I am not doing this to be obtuse; this is the only way to police the reasonableness of the discussion we have this evening. I try―and I occasionally fail―not to believe anything until a level of evidence and reasoned explanation have been delivered for that belief. The required level of evidence and reasoned explanation for each belief is described by the extraordinariness of the belief. Lets us take just a moment to explore what that means.

If you claim to have a pet dog…

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