Why do so many of you blame atheists for not “choosing” to believe in god (or "choosing" to not believe in god)? We have not made that choice.
How does one just “choose” to believe in god, if they have not been convinced that “he” exists?
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence if they are to be believed.
1)For example, if you read in a biography that Abraham Lincoln ate an apple everyday for breakfast, you probably would not even question this and would accept the claim.. People eat apples every day, so it is no skin off your nose to believe that Lincoln ate apples for breakfast. Sure this could be a false claim, but it is not unreasonable to believe it.Claims #1 and #2 may very well be false, but they are not extraordinary claims that require extraordinary evidence to believe. However, claim #3 would require extraordinary evidence to be believed.
2)Now, what about the story of Lincoln being shot by John Wilkes Booth? Sure, that could be a made-up legend, but we do have evidence that he died and we know that humans who are shot, often die, so it is not unreasonable to believe this.
3)Now, what if people claimed that Lincoln died but came back to life inhabiting the body of his successor in order to finish out his term? Is it reasonable to believe that humans come back to life and then inhabit another person's body? Not without extraordinary evidence.
With that being said, how does one “choose” to believe extraordinary claims without something that convinces them of the claim’s truth? Without some kind of convincing proof or experience, how is an atheist expected to believe in god? My beliefs are arrived at based on something convincing me of its truth. I cannot just choose to believe out of the blue. Nothing has convinced me yet of god's existence, so I do not currently believe. It doesn’t matter if I “want” to believe in god (which I do), because my beliefs aren’t arrived at based on what I “want” to believe in. Heck, there are some things that I believe in that I would rather not believe, but have no choice based on the overwhelming evidence.
Let’s take the following scenario as an example:
Would you "choose" to believe your son is a murderer?
Let's say your son (hypothetical) got arrested for murder (1st degree). You've raised him as loving, moral, son for over 20 years and he's never hurt a flea.
Would you "choose" to believe that he was a murderer at this point? (Probably not, since it goes against everything you know about your son.....how kind, gentle, and upstanding he is.)
Now let's say that you are exposed to the damning evidence, your spouse witnessed the murder, and your son did not deny it. There is no mistake in this case that he committed premeditated murder. Would you now "choose" to believe your son was a murderer?
If you are a loving parent who has over 20 years of experience with your son, and know that he has been a good kid all of these years.....why would you "choose" to believe he was a murderer?
On the other hand, if you "choose" to believe he is innocent........why?