Response to “The Problem with Presuppositionalism”
One of our readers brought this post – http://philosophiles.net/2012/09/28/the-problem-with-presuppositionalism – to my attention. For some reason I was unable to comment on the post, so I have reproduced a brief response here.
The author is probably correct to think that premise four is the one that presuppositionalists are going to object to, but in attempting to defend that premise he makes at least three errors.
First, he focuses on, “The only effective way to falsify premise four,” which assumes that the burden of proof is on the presuppositionalist to falsify the premise. But that’s not the way arguments work. Since he presented the argument, the burden falls on him not only to state his premises, but support them through further argumentation. He has not done so.
Second, he writes, “The only effective way to falsify premise four is to present a sound ontological argument to establish God’s necessary existence.” But this is not the case at all. Presuppositionalists – believe it or not – *presuppose* their God. Thus God’s existence and nature are already part of the argument. That includes His necessary existence. Now the author of the post might reply that the presuppositionalist has somehow cheated. He might demand that the presuppositionalist defend a contingent (not necessary) god instead. But the presuppositionalist will simply respond that he or she has no interest in defending a god that was made up and assigned to the presuppositionalist to defend. God is a necessary being.
Third, he writes, “the problem with giving an ontological argument is the apologist will have to presuppose the validity of some laws of logic just to form the ontological argument.” Of course the presuppositionalist – believe it or not – presupposes the laws of logic in his or her argumentation. In fact the argument moves from logic to God, as it were. Logic presupposes God. I’m not sure where this author got the idea that in order to argue that logic presupposes God, one must “give up” logic. That’s very strange indeed. Again, he writes, “The apologist will have to give up her presupposition to defend her presupposition, which seems a bit absurd.” What presupposition will the presuppositionalist be giving up? God? No. God as a necessary being? No. Logic? No. So I think this gentleman is a bit confused.
Meanwhile he has attempted to utilize logic throughout his post without accounting for it apart from God. Since providing such an account is logically prior to utilizing the laws of logic in question, the author of the post has not established his case even if his argument is sound, which it is not.
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