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Miracles do not prove divinity.

Coin Flips

If you flip a coin 10 times and it comes up heads 10 times in a row, is that a miracle?

If you flip a coin 100 times and it comes up heads 100 times in a row, is that a miracle?

If you flip a coin 10,000 times and it comes up heads 10,000 times in a row, is that a miracle?

No tricks – let's assume you have reason to believe it is a fair coin. How do you explain 10,000 heads in a row?

The problem is, it could always just be a coincidence. No matter how unlikely. Further, there are many who would say that such a coin is an obviously unfair coin, using the result to re-define the base principles.

That's a great analogy to the “perfect universe implies a creator” argument. But it could refer to any sort of miracle. At a certain point one would have to ask what sort of proof is actually being asked for.

"Real" miracles

Let's say a whale jumped up and it suddenly got real cloudy except for one beam of light on the whale, and the whale had a scar that looked like a hat and mustache and it started dancing on the beach and singing a German rendition of “Good Morning” from “Singing in the Rain (1952)”.

Is that a miracle? Apart from being completely odd, and the rather theoretical concern that it doesn't seem intended to prove anything, you could say so, maybe. But it shares many similarities with a great number of coin tosses. According to quantum theory, you may in fact suddenly dematerialize and rematerialize somewhere else (even, to a place you want to go). It's not magic at all. And the chances of such happening are around the same as the dancing whale. Or, several trillion trillion coin flips coming up heads.

Thus, as soon as one wants to state it is 'only due to chance,' no miracle whatsoever could possibly prove anything, let alone divine intervention, because it could possibly be reproduced entirely by chance and our well-understood and proven science.

to be continued

miracles_do_not_prove_divinity.txt · Last modified: 2018/01/27 17:25 (external edit)