Logic or Illogic?

Just curious, how many of us are familiar with deductive logic?

The hypothetical proposition/conclusion: If P then Q; P, therefore Q; not Q, therefore not P.

Here’s a gem of an example of deductive logic [or illogic?], presented by someone by the name of Thamus in the comment section of an article by Masked Crusader [http://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2015/12/embrace-compassion-regardless-of-religion/ 11 Dec 2015]:

  1. If God does not exist, objective moral values do not exist.
  2. Objective moral values do exist.
  3. Therefore, God exists.

Thamus was evidently confident that his argument, as expressed, is a logical, sound argument for the existence of God; and one of his closing lines reads: “And so ladies and gentlemen, there you have it, the first evidence for the existence of God.” This argument is obviously not strictly about deductive logic, but an attempt using illogic to show “evidence” for the existence of God.

The illogic or flaw in Thamus’ argument is as apparent as his wishful thinking about God. For the benefit of regular readers of this forum [and perhaps other members of the public], and for Thamus himself, the irrationality or absurdity of his argument needs to be exposed.

The flaw or irrationality of Thamus’ argument can be clearly exemplified by other similar arguments  juxtaposed in similar fashion, for example:

  1. If the ten-tailed monkey does not exist, Thamus does not exist
  2. Thamus exists.
  3. Therefore the ten-tailed monkey exists.

 

  1. If planet Thamucrazy does not exist, planet Earth does not exist.
  2. Planet Earth exists.
  3. Therefore planet Thamucrazy exists.

 

  1. If Thor does not exist, superstitious people do not exist.
  2. Superstitious people exist.
  3. Therefore, Thor exists.

We can clearly see the false premise/conclusion offered for each of these arguments.

Thamus may be unaware of course that to some people “God” is a term that is totally devoid of meaning, with absolutely no relevance or standing in the physical world, the question of his/her/its existence or non-existence notwithstanding.

Why should so-called objective moral values have to be strictly dependent on God? If God were to say: “A has no objective moral value” or “A has objective moral value,” A would still be a subjective issue, dependent on God’s whim or fancy.

I wonder whether Thamus has heard of the “Euthyphro dilemma.” Here’s an extract from

http://moralphilosophy.info/normative-ethics/deontology/divine-command-theory/the-euthyphro-dilemma/

“The Euthyphro dilemma is introduced with the question Does God command the good because it is good, or is it good because it is commanded by God? Each of the two possibilities identified in this question are widely agreed to present intractable problems for divine command theory.

Suppose that the divine command theorist takes the first horn of the dilemma, asserting that God commands the good because it is good. If God commands the good because it is good, then he bases his decision what to command on what is already morally good. Moral goodness, then, must exist before God issues any commands, otherwise he wouldn’t command anything. If moral goodness exists before God issues any commands, though, then moral goodness is independent of God’s commands; God’s commands aren’t the source of morality, but merely a source of information about morality. Morality itself is not based in divine commands.

Suppose, then, that the divine commands theorist takes the second horn of the dilemma, asserting that the good is good because it is commanded by God. On this view, nothing is good until God commands it. This, though, raises a problem too: if nothing is good until God commands it, then what God commands is completely morally arbitrary; God has no moral reason for commanding as he does; morally speaking, he could just as well have commanded anything else. This problem is exacerbated when we consider that God, being omnipotent, could have commanded anything at all. He could, for example, have commanded polygamy, slavery, and the killing of the over-50s. If divine command theory is true, then had he done so then these things would be morally good. That doesn’t seem right, though; even if God had commanded these things they would still be morally bad. Divine command theory, then, must be false.”

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