My point exactly. But when you converse with an atheist, they will say correctly (1) that atheism is not a worldview and (2) 'but science'... They then often proceed to have a debate about the various scientific proofs for things - which is not the debate at all. (It is actually strawman tactics?). Science is not the issue and the evidence that it produces is great/amazing/ etc etc. There IS no argument. But it is typically the atheists that claims 'science is true, therefore atheism...'.
dennis, you keep thinking the problem is ours, but it's yours. You're not getting this at all.
Look, science allows us to discover how the real world works. The one we live in. The one we can all pretty much agree on. We're not saying it's good at everything. We're not saying it is the be-all and end-all of discovery methods OK? Are we done with this now? We are in agreement on that. Can we fucking move past it now and on to things that matter?
It is not that 'science is true, therefore atheism'. But it is
about how destructive science can be toward theism. The reason science is so destructive to religion is because it provides us with natural explanations for how reality functions. When you have natural explanations, you no longer need supernatural ones. This has been proven time and time again, and for my money, the theory of evolution just pummels the idea of God into dust. While you may feel justified in saying 'this is just how God set things up', this is a completely unnecessary step and provides us with absolutely no further understanding.
An analogy for what you're doing here would be something akin to saying that the fairies in the dirt make the grass green; then finding out about chlorophyll and saying the grass is green because of chlorophyll because of the fairies. If you know what makes the grass green, and it's a completely natural process, then why the fuck do you still need to talk about the fairies? You can safely jettison that idea, can't you?
My argument is that science is true for the material world. It therefore cannot be used to debunk a worldview that includes and transcends science.
We aren't trying to use it to do that. This is the point you have to get off of. We have been asking for another methodology that we can use, and you've given us nothing to work with. You can't say 'faith' because that's not useful here. You really could be wrong, and not only that, if we are to use faith as reasonable evidence, then the faiths of every person on the planet should be taken into consideration as evidence for the existence of their particular god or gods as well.
What science allows us to do, however, is give reasonable, natural, non-deity based explanations for a ridiculously large number of things in the universe. If you have that, then God slowly drifts toward becoming an unnecessary explanatory force, and it just dies out. Just like the fairies in the garden. And lets just say the trend is moving that direction, don't you think? I mean seriously... can you think of any
single phenomena for which there was once a scientific explanation, that was overturned by a religious one? It doesn't happen. And then, can you think of any phenomena for which a religious explanation once held sway that was overturned in favor of a scientific one? They are all over the place, and every single day there are more of them. Science is pushing the necessity of God as an explanatory force right out the window. When is it finally going to be safe to say that he's just not fucking there? Do we have to know every single detail about the universe in order to recognize the massive shift in the legitimacy of natural claims over the supernatural ones? Isn't it now perfectly reasonable to think that if we don't know the answer to something, regardless of what it is, that it's a relatively safe bet that there is a natural explanation?
So again, it's not that we are applying science to the study of God. We aren't. We aren't looking for God under a microscope and saying 'Nope, no God here!' and then concluding atheism is true. We aren't trying to hold up a tape measure to the sky and saying 'Nope, can't measure God, therefore atheism!'. We are simply applying science to the study of reality, and coming up with natural explanation after natural explanation, which, in turn, decreases the necessity of God as an explanatory force. It's really that simple.
Christianity is different to all religions in that it is based on GRACE. All other religions ask followers to DO something to EARN their way to heaven. Well, if your god made you broken and incapable of being sin-free, but also demands that you earn your way to heaven, that sounds like an unfair deal to me. Hence all other religions are dismiss-able in my book.
Do you really dismiss all other religions because you think they are unfair? Do you normally use the fairness of a position as a determining factor behind what is true or not true? If your best friend was shot in the face, would you dismiss the claim that he was shot in the face simply because you felt it was unfair for him to be shot?
What does the notion that Christianity is different from other religions have to do with whether or not it's true, anyway? Scientology is super-duper different... does that make it more true?