A #1 bestseller in the Atheism category, On the Existence of Gods is a response to a public challenge posed by a militant atheist who claimed to have never encountered any good arguments for the existence of gods. It is a competitive discourse between a Christian and an atheist, each of whom argue for their position on the subject, after which the arguments are adjudicated by a team of three judges – a Christian, an agnostic, and an atheist – before additional arguments are presented.
The format is compelling and the results are at times surprising, as the discussion takes unexpected twists and turns, while the judges exhibit ruthless impartiality as they criticize the arguments without mercy or favor. Vox Day, the author of The Irrational Atheist, presents the Christian perspective, while Dominic Saltarelli argues for the atheist position. The debate is wide-ranging and intelligent, but remains civil throughout, even as the momentum swings in favor of one side, and then the other.
Narrated by Jon Mollison, On the Existence of Gods is three hours and 22 minutes long. Click on the links or the cover image to listen to a sample.
There is a vast quantity of extant documentary and testimonial evidence providing indications that gods exist. This evidence dates from the earliest written records to current testimonials from living individuals. While it is true that the quality of this evidence varies considerably, it cannot simply be dismissed out of hand anymore than one can conclude Gaius Julius Caesar did not exist because one cannot see him on television today. Each and every case demands its own careful examination before it can be dismissed, and such examination has never been done in the overwhelming majority of cases.
For example, there are many documented cases of confirmed fraud in published scientific papers. If we apply the same reasoning to published scientific papers that some wish to apply to documentary evidence of gods, we have no choice but to conclude that all science is fraudulent. But this is absurd, as we know that at least some science is not fraudulent. Therefore, if one is willing to accept the validity of published scientific papers that one has not been able to verify are not fraudulent, one must similarly accept the validity of documentary evidence for the existence of gods that one has not examined and determined to merit dismissal for one reason or another.
Because it is intrinsically testimonial in nature, the documentary evidence for gods has been impugned on the basis of studies concerning the unreliability of eyewitness testimony for various reasons. However, this critical analogy actually demonstrates the precise opposite of what it purports to show. Since eyewitness testimony has been variously determined to be somewhere between 12 percent and 50 percent inaccurate, this means that between 50 percent and 88 percent of the testimonial evidence for gods should be assumed accurate, at least concerning the correctly reported details of the divine encounter. The correct interpretations of the specific details, of course, are a different matter.