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It Works for Me

It seems that theists aren’t always the ones who lack reason. Many times even normally reasonable atheists fall into the trap of using anecdotal evidence to justify an irrational belief. The old, “it works for me” claim is not actually evidence!

I usually hear religious people and new age people make the claim that something ridiculous works for them despite all the evidence to the contrary. But we also see this type of thinking in relation to homeopathy and this is where atheists occasionally get dragged into this logical problem.

Not long ago, I got into a discussion about Alcoholics Anonymous, which has a 5% success rate. I was surprised that normally reasonable atheists would make the claim that it works because they have some relative or friend who was saved. This anecdotal evidence is supposed to convince me in the face of the actual numbers?

Anecdotal evidence is not sufficient except if it confirms or highlights what other forms of evidence suggest. But just because my grandfather smoked a pipe until he was 93 years old doesn’t mean that smoking a pipe I not harmful to one’s health.

Logic, it works for me… and everyone else too!

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