The Common Consent Argument

This is the nineteenth in a series of posts responding to a list of 20 arguments for the existence of god from this article. To be fair, the article does state that these arguments don’t make a case except when taken all together, using the metaphor of a rope, but I am analyzing them individually so I have responses when I encounter the argument later in other sources.

  1. Belief in God—that Being to whom reverence and worship are properly due—is common to almost all people of every era.
  2. Either the vast majority of people have been wrong about this most profound element of their lives or they have not.
  3. It is most plausible to believe that they have not.
  4. Therefore it is most plausible to believe that God exists.

This argument is nothing more than the bandwagon fallacy, which is almost the first fallacy anyone learns. Indeed, we ALL know it intuitively, or at least those of us who have heard or asked the common question, “If all your friends jumped off a cliff, then would you do it, too?” As with many of the arguments on the list, the main support is an incredulous stare. Peter Kreeft can’t believe any explanation but that god exists, therefore god exists. This is hardly convincing to a skeptic, especially one who, like myself, has read The Believing Brain and has therein seen natural explanations for why humans believe in god.

2 thoughts on “The Common Consent Argument

  1. Seriously. This is the precise formulation for an Ad Populum fallacy. He’s not even attempting to obfuscate his poor argumentation, any more. I can’t wait to see if the trend continues in number #20! Without having read Kreeft’s original, I’m gonna go ahead and predict that #20 is “1. God exists; 2. Therefore, God exists.”

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