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3 AM Philosophy

If ~Bp is held as atheism, then ~B~p can be held as theism else you are guilty of special pleading.

“Weak Atheist Special Pleading Argument”
(WASP argument)

I wanted to see if I could simplify my atheist special pleading argument because people have once again been talking about it. This is a little more explanatory I think, with a much more succinct summation at the end.

As simplified as I can make the argument:

If ¬Bp is held as atheism, then ¬B¬p can be held as theism else you are guilty of special pleading.

*JUMP TO BOTTOM TO SKIP ALL THE LOGICAL STEPS TO JUST GET TO THE SUMMATION OF THE ARGUMENT*

Given the general form of φ V ¬φ

Then given any proposition p you have p V ¬p

This means it is the case that p is True (p) or (V) is not-True (¬p).
“not-True” here being synonymous as False.

p V ~p is simply therefore saying that it is the case that p is either True or it is the case that p is False.

Given the predication of belief, where B is “Believes” or “Believes that” then is either the case that you believe p (Bp) or it is not the case that you believe p (¬Bp).

Given then the form φ V ¬φ:

Then if φ =Bp:
φ V ¬φ
(Bp) V ¬(Bp)
Bp V ¬Bp

The scope of the negation therefore is it is the case that you believe p or Bp or it is not the case that you believe p (¬Bp).

Now suppose p=”God exists”. It is either the case that p=”God exists” or ¬p=”it is not the case God exists” or ¬p=”God does not exist”.

Given it is generally accepted that if you believe God exists you’re a theist so given then:

Bp = “Believes that God exists”

and If one does not believe p then by shown above one must hold to ¬Bp then:

¬Bp = “Does not believe that God exists”

Theism would then Bp=”Believes that God exist” and the non-acceptance of Bp would be ¬Bp which is often referred to as “weak atheism” or merely “lacking a belief that God exists”.

You now have:

Theism= Bp = “Believes that God exists”
Weak atheism = ¬Bp = “Does not believe God exists”

And some people wish to refer to weak atheism as merely atheism where “weak” case here just refers to holding to a position of “does not believe” (¬Bp)

Atheism = Weak atheism = ¬Bp = “Does not believe God exists”

Given then ¬p=”God does not exist” and “weak” referring to merely holding a position of “does not believe” then not believing ¬p would be ¬B¬p.

Then ¬B¬p would mean “does not believe that God does not exist”.

Since “weak” is a position of “does not believe” then if one does not accept the negation of p that “God does not exist” then ¬B¬p would be “weak” theism.

Since B¬p entails ¬Bp logically (If you believe “God does not exist” you “do not Believe God does exist”.
So B¬p must also be atheism in what is called the “strong” case.

Conclusion:

Theism (strong) = Bp = “Believes that God exists”
Weak atheism = ¬Bp = “Does not believe God exists”

Atheism (strong) = B¬p = “Believes that God does not exists”
Weak theism = ¬B¬p = “Does not believe God does not  exists”

If someone wishes to claim weak atheism = atheism then someone else can also claim that weak theism = theism and to deny them otherwise is simply being guilty of special pleading.

______________________________

*Summation with out all the logic steps:*

If strong atheism (B¬p) is “Believes that God does not exist”
then weak atheism (¬Bp) would be “Does not believe God exist”.

Then strong theism is (Bp) “Believes that God does exist”
then weak theism (¬B¬p) would be “Does not believe God does not exist”

If one asserts weak atheism (¬Bp) is to be held as “atheism”
Then someone else can assert that weak theism (¬B¬p) is to be held as “theism”

If you deny them that then you are guilty of special pleading.

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