The Argument from experience
Can God be experienced at first hand?
· Notion of God is to be rejected (There is no God, hence no experience of Him)
o Are there good reasons to do this? Divine characteristics incompatibility? Surely, there must at least be a possibility – we cannot prove the non-existence of God.
· Our experience was wrong (mistake identity, mis-interpretation, hallucination)
o Possibility we could be wrong does not mean we were wrong
o Hallucination requires the possibility of it being a true experience, how could have a hallucination/illusion of X without X being a possibility?
· The people who experience God are usually under psychological/social pressures
o But if people who experience God are often mad…that is not always.
· We have no tests for verifying experience as being experience of God
o But the existence of tests is independent of the truth of the claim
· Some people report experience of absence of God, no uniformity on this experience
o This does not demonstrate there is no God
o Surely this means that religious experience does not demonstrate God?
What is experience of God?
· Sense experience
o Sense experience of a non-physical, non-locatable (etc.)…