Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Debate: Does God Exist? (David Wood vs. Heina Dadabhoy)

Here's a recent debate I had with Heina Dadabhoy on the existence of God. Heina was raised as a Mulim, but she's an atheist now. Although she's fairly new on the scene, she's already better than most atheist debaters.

I also interviewed Heina on her reasons for leaving Islam and becoming an atheist:


Nojmul Huda said...

Only one miraculous science came out of Quran as true is its test of proofing false prophet hood by poison test. Quran proved that Muhammad was a false Prophet because he was killed by poison. Quran 69:44-46 “And if Muhammad had made up about Us some [FALSE] SAYINGS, We would have seized him by the right hand; Then WE WOULD HAVE CUT FROM HIM THE AORTA”.

As Quran said if Muhammad was true prophet he would not die when he ate poisonous lamb meat cooked by a Jewish woman.

Atheists like Heina are missing opportunity to take God’s love and kindness offered for us for eternal life before end of this material world controlled by evil power who denies existence of God. It is fight between good and evil power and we are customers for both God and evil. We have freedom to choose either of the two paths to enjoy our mortal life. But at the end of world there is only one way that could take us to eternal life.

As David said in his opening statement I too believe at the end of scientific day, when all truths about seen or unseen be revealed to mankind, then all people of earth would praise God in one voice “Glory to God in Heaven”. But for many of us it would be too late to turn to Him to get His salvation, before end of the world. It is rightly said “make hey while sun shines”.


Traeh said...

Toward the end of the debate, David and Heina were talking a bit about love, which Heina reduced to brain chemicals. I would have liked to see David develop an argument that God is love. I'm not sure that God is omniscience or omnipotence, but I do think God is love.

I don't see how Heina feels there is any meaning in her life, if "she" is just electro-chemical brain reactions, and there are no mental states really, since all "mental" states are really just physical states, in her view. If she is just flesh and her soul is nothing really, then what meaning is there? "Meaning" in her view would apparently be nothing really. After all, meaning is fundamentally relationship -- and relationship is in principle not something that could ever be made directly visible, it is a non-physical, i.e., a spiritual, thing.

But she's pretty honest and consistent. She evidently has no memory or current experience of a purely spiritual reality. She is only aware of physical realities. In that, she seems to be like most people most of the time in the current stage of history. For the most part we only have more or less abstract thoughts today, and abstract thoughts, from an experiential point of view, are "grey" and weak by comparison with our "physical" experience. They are so "grey" experientially, so "attentuated," that we find, for example, that most scientists are convinced that thoughts are in a way an illusion, and that all that is "really" present is the brain.

During the course of history, mental states have gradually become abstract, as thought has emerged. Mental states have become abstract, have been gradually emptied in a sense of their own spiritual being (through an historical process lasting millennia) partly so that mental states could arise that would be able to represent or be "about" outer things. Somewhat like mirrors, abstract thoughts do not show their own being, but empty themselves of it, so that they can mirror other things.

But precisely because abstract thoughts -- today almost all thought is in a sense abstract -- are experientially almost empty, they leave us free, do not compel us, whereas before human beings had abstract thought, the voices of spiritual beings did in a sense impel and compel human beings. Before the ancient Greeks, most human beings lived in a kind of spiritual plenum, the myth/image consciousness, through which spiritual voices spoke.

But image consciousness faded into thought among the ancient Greeks, who carved with their thoughts a kind of hole in the spiritual plenum, and into that "empty" free space of thought and civilization opened by the Greeks and others, the divine "I Am", the Christ, descended, to reconnect humanity with the spirit, but now on higher level inclusive of human freedom and conscious individuality.

Spiritual being can enter our mental states again, so that they are no longer only abstract or experientially empty, but rather become filled at certain moments of concentration with reality every bit as qualitatively rich and convincing -- but in a non-physical way -- as the natural world is qualitatively rich and convincing in its reality. Christ and the spiritual world can begin to pulse directly in our thoughts and speak to us in them. I don't mean that in some metaphorical sense. I mean a new kind of reality or evidence can enter consciousness today. But unlike humans before the advent of thought and the descent of the I Am, we can now through the Christ be free individual beings in relation to the spirit.

To find out more on this, perhaps the best place to start, if you are oriented toward thinking, is with a book by the man whom C.S. Lewis called "the wisest and best of my unofficial teachers." I mean the book Worlds Apart by Owen Barfield. That book is pretty astounding in itself, and can lead toward other books that explain still further what I'm referring to.

bam bamba said...

David I must commend you for such a very cordial debate with Heina. Though Heina at times became quite agitated and aggressive when cornered , she was overall very civil and respectful.
I would say that the arguments whichever way one looks at it points to the complexity needing a designer. We may assume that certain things are inefficient or could have been made better, but the question is what is the reference for such conclusion? It is kind of surprising that Heina is willing to accept that there is a designer for the computer and other less complicated tangible items but not for the universe with all its complexities. As a medical person I am often times in awe when all the microsystems that make human beings function is observed at the microscopic level. The chance of these happening by chance is completely ludicrous.
As regards microevolution - this is nothing more than adaptation- the information already exists in the genome which becomes manifest under different condition.
Heina continuously talked about science as if you have to be an atheist to pursue knowledge, this is a commonly used mantra by atheists which unfortunately falls flat in the face of the history of major world discoveries. On a last note, Heina's experience in islam I believe clouded her objective reasoning to see that something cannot come from nothing.
Well done David for a very articulate and consistent argument.
Jesus Christ is the answer for the world.

Feralness said...

How sad to be so insecure in your religion you can't handle when someone leaves.

Tom said...

Hi David,
Pray that the New Year will bring you and the family continued greater Blessings of love, Peace, Health and Wealth, Glorious New Year!

I found it frustrating that you could not respond because you being the gentleman that you are, followed the framework, that is the Topic is used in the broad sense with no one, believe system to use as a guide. She 'boxed' you.

When she said that, God is not Loving, is sadistic, not benevolent etc.. you could not Refute her according to the Christian scriptures which she claim to have read but surely not understand!

I am very curious, that aethist use this argument eg.that the larynx is not efficiently designed?
Is there any proof that this is the original design?
If it were to be designed any other way,wont there be other changes that needs to made both internally & externally? What would the result of those changes?

rivan said...


New Year greetings to you and the family! Thanks for posting this debate. Ill be watching it tonite. I've asked you this a few times now, when will u post the debate u had in Paris? You usually are prompt in posting any debate, was wondering why the delay in posting that one. God Bless!!

Andy said...

Good debate David. It seems that atheists like to argue since science explains how things work, there is no need for a creator. I think Professor Lennox explained it well when he said just because science can explain engine combustion doesn't negate the fact that the Ford engine had a designer. On one hand science explains how combustion causes an engine to fire but on the other we all know Henry Ford is the designer of the engine. Science explains how things work in the universe but wants to avoid what caused it to happen in the first place. You have to have both and atheists are adamant that the complexities of the universe doesn't require a cause, after all, like Heina said, things can pop in and out of existence on its own. While I think she is just repeating this from Steven Hawking, I am skeptical something can come from nothing. Now that, is serious faith on our atheist friends part.

Joseph said...

Great debate David,

I thoroughly enjoyed the very end which I wont spoil for others who havent seent it - but that was a classic moment in debate history, lol.

I always find interesting the double standard that atheists have to stand on in order to support the naturalistic worldview - Which is, what I call - The Nature of the Gaps.

Its perfectly fine for them to "have faith" in naturalism although they have no evidence for the belief that Nature brought itself into existence - Yet its Not ok for the Theist to come to a logical conclusion that God (a personal cause) exists based on the simple fact that the universe had a beginning.

I think Heina even admitted at one point that she was "not arguing that everything came into existence by chance" - if thats the case then what is she saying? What is the opposite of chance? Choice. So then, who's choice?

Haecceitas said...

I think Heina did quite a bit of strawmanning in her replies. Perhaps because she doesn't have all of the required categories to discuss the arguments without distorting them. But perhaps the "highlight" of the debate was a short exchange that went along these lines (though not exactly word for word):

David: "This is the simplest known living organism."
Heina: "No, it's not. There are simpler ones."
David: "Which ones?"
Heina: "I don't know. I'm comfortable with uncertainty."

Whatever one thinks of being comfortable with uncertainty in general, it probably isn't a good idea to be comfortable with it when making a pretty confident claim that the other debater is wrong.

David Wood said...


You can download YouTube videos using this site:

bob morane said...

2 hours to talk about before big bang?

wow.. i don't want to lose my time