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Logical Fallacy of Proof by Assumption

 

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Assumption

Whenever a logical fallacy is committed, the fallacy has its roots in Agrippa's trilemma. All human thought (without Divine revelation) is based on one of three unhappy possibilities. These three possibilities are infinite regression, circular reasoning, or axiomatic thinking. This problem is known as Agrippa's trilemma. Some have claimed that only logic and math can be known without Divine revelation; however, that is not true. Without Divine revelation, neither logic nor math can be known. Science is also limited to the pragmatic because of the weakness on human reasoning, which is known as Agrippa's trilemma. Proof by assumption is one of the many smokescreens that are used to cover the fact that the reasoning is based on one of the three fallacies of Agrippa's trilemma.

The logical fallacy of proof by assumption occurs when assumption is required to support a premise that is used to support a conclusion, or when assumption is the only thing that is supporting a conclusion. An assumption could be categorized as an unsupported assertion fallacy or an unverified evidence fallacy. An assumption is a thing that is accepted as true or as certain to happen, without proof. However, most assumptions are pulled from worldviews/fake-realities, which seem more real than reality itself. For this reason, it either seems to make sense to make the assumption or else the assumption is made without realizing that it is mere assumption and not part of reality.

If you allow yourself a single assumption in your thinking, you can "prove" anything. If you assume that the Easter Bunny exists and dogmatically hold to that assumption, then you have "proven" that the Easter Bunny exists. But you did it by using a fallacy. Naturalism and Materialism are both assumptions that assume no God. They are routinely the unspoken assumptions behind the anti-God claims of Atheists. In the same way, Uniformitarianism is an assumption that assumes no Genesis flood. Uniformitarianism is the unspoken assumption behind every argument against the Genesis flood.

Proof by assumption is one of the many ways that Agrippa's Trilemma operates. Agrippa's Trilemma will assure that every argument against God, against the Bible, and against the history of the Bible will be based on either infinite regression, circular reasoning, or arbitrary assumptions that are taken as axioms. In other words, such arguments must be logical proof by fallacy. Fallacies can be very deceiving and hard to discover, but the fallacies will be there. And it doesn't matter whether the attacks come from an angry man like Dawkins or a rocker like Gungor, the fallacies will be the bases. Agrippa's Trilemma assures this to be true.

Clarifying the Meaning of the Word, Assumption

Dictionary definition of the word, assumption: "a thing that is accepted as true or as certain to happen, without proof."

The only reason this must be done is that there has been considerable use of the logical fallacy of equivocation in regard to assumptions. For an example of this equivocation, let's look at a quote from the Berkeley website in which not a single example given for the word, assumption, is in conformity with the definition given above. This would not be a terrible problem, except that the common practice is to so broadly define the word, assumption that a place like Berkeley uses the same word to define real assumptions and the examples given below, causing their graduates to have difficulty sorting out reality from unreality. "Much as we might like to avoid it, all scientific tests involve making assumptions — many of them justified. For example, imagine a very simple test of the hypothesis that substance A stops bacterial growth. Some Petri dishes are spread with a mixture of substance A and bacterial growth medium, and others are spread with a mixture of inert substance B and bacterial growth medium. Bacteria are spread on all the Petri dishes, and one day later, the plates are examined to see which fostered the growth of bacterial colonies and which did not. This test is straightforward, but still relies on many assumptions: we assume that the bacteria can grow on the growth medium, we assume that substance B does not affect bacterial growth, we assume that one day is long enough for colonies to grow, and we assume that the color pen we use to mark the outside of the dishes is not influencing bacterial growth."

  • Let's examine these so-called assumptions.
  • "we assume that the bacteria can grow on the growth medium" Would they not have tested this to make sure it was true so they would not have to assume it? Of course, this is the case.
  • "we assume that substance B does not affect bacterial growth" So, do they just grab some random substance B, not knowing what it is so that they have to assume? Of course not. They use a substance that has been tested repeatedly using scientific method so that they can be sure that it doesn't affect bacterial growth.
  • "we assume that one day is long enough for colonies to grow" They actually might have to make an assumption like this if this is the first pass at this experiment and they know nothing about the bacteria. More likely, they set the time to a period that they know is long enough because they have already shown this to be long enough before they start adding other variables. To introduce too many unknowns at once is sloppy science.
  • "we assume that the color pen we use to mark the outside of the dishes is not influencing bacterial growth" This would not be an assumption. What kind of lab would through an untested pen into the mix so they wouldn't know if the experiment is bringing meaningful results or not?

Note that every one of these so-called assumptions is testable. None of these things requires assumption.

So, this definition of assumption is confusing. What is even more confusing is calling these testable facts "assumptions" while also calling untestable, often impossible, proclamations "assumptions." This is the logical fallacy of equivocation.

Here are some real arbitrary assumptions: "Natural processes are sufficient for understanding the natural world." "Nature operates uniformly throughout the universe in space and time." "It’s impossible to know if we have considered all possible alternative explanations." "Scientific knowledge is the most reliable knowledge we can have about the natural world and how it works." "There was no Genesis Flood." "There is no God. God cannot be known. God cannot reveal anything." "Science is the only way to know anything." "There is no spiritual realm." "God cannot have any affect on any scientific inquiry." "We can make valid assumptions without any proof or any way to test those assumptions." "All processes continue at the same rate from the beginning unless this assumption causes problems for the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story, in which case, other assumptions must be made to make the observation fall in line with the story."

Here are some revelations that conflict with some of those assumptions: "God is the cause of all of what we call natural processes, and He is faithful but unrestricted." "In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth--in six days, He created them." "The world as we know it will be destroyed and replaced with a new Heaven and New Earth." "God judges sin because He is just." "There is a spiritual realm." "It is possible to know God." "Everyone who keeps seeking to know Christ in sincerity, humility, submission, and respect will find Christ." "Everyone who follows Christ is led by Christ." "God works with us in unfolding revelation from glory to greater glory." "God has an order for everything that He has created; when we violate that order, we work against the purposes of God." "The big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story is a lie."

Examples of the Logical Fallacy of Proof by Assumption

Bill Nye arguing against Creation science: “You can show the Earth is not flat. You can show the Earth is not 10,000 years old.”

This is the logical fallacy of faulty comparison.

How do we know that the Earth is not flat? We can see that it constantly falls away to the horizon. We can calculate the way this happens and come pretty close to the circumference. We can go out in a space craft and look at it as we orbit it. That’s how we know. What do we have to assume? If there were no revelation, we would have to assume that we are observing what we are observing, but God reveals that, so we don't need to assume that. God also reveals that the laws of logic are valid--He shows us that logic makes sense in the light of a faithful, wise creator God but not in the light of the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story.

How do we know the age of the Earth? Can we observe the age of the Earth? We have to assume whether or not there was a global flood (or else believe God). We have to assume a starting point for every so-called clock. We have to assume that nothing happened in between for each clock, assume a closed system, an assumption that is in conflict with scientific observation. The clocks differ wildly when used with the same assumptions, and the vast majority of them give us a young age for the Earth. So, Bill Nye is forced to assume that only a few of the clocks are valid and that it's OK to cherry-pick data. Since Bill Nye, and those who share his belief system, will only use the clocks that they can manipulate to give an old Earth, this is also the logical fallacy of cherry-picking data. And then there is the fact that when dates using the favorite methods don’t give the desired results, that data is thrown out, disregarded, and new tests are run until the desired results are obtained.This is an extreme example of the logical fallacy of stacking the deck.

Bill Nye arguing against Creation science: “Snow ice forms over the winter as snowflakes fall and are crushed down by subsequent layers, they’re crushed together, entrapping the little bubbles, and the little bubbles must needs be the ancient atmosphere. There’s nobody running around with a hypodermic needle, you know, squirting ancient atmosphere into the bubbles, and we find certain of these cylinders to have 680, 000 layers. 680,000 snow winter- summer cycles. How could it be that just 4,000 years ago all of this ice formed? Let's just run some numbers. This is some scenes from lovely Antarctic. Let's say we have 680,000 layers of snow ice and 4,000 years since the great flood. That would mean we would need 170 winter-summer cycles every year for the last 4,000 years. I mean, wouldn't someone have noticed that? (laughing) Wow! (laughing) Wouldn't someone have noticed that there's been winter-summer-winter-summer 170 times one year?"

“the little bubbles must needs be the ancient atmosphere” How ancient is this atmosphere? How do you date the ancient atmosphere trapped in the little bubbles? You don’t. The word, ancient, is a logical fallacy of proof by assumption and a tactic of suggestion. It is a ploy to get you to think old. The bubbles obviously got there before the day they drilled, but we can’t know how long ago they got there.

"There’s nobody running around with a hypodermic needle, you know, squirting ancient atmosphere into the bubbles" Bill Nye is using the fallacies of irrelevant thesis and irrelevant conclusion, since he is proving that no one is messing with atmosphere in any way. The little bubbles are interesting. The atmosphere in them is of some unknown age. Ancient is a nebulous term and is just that much more ambiguity in the argument. But none of this proves anything. It is all irrelevant. The arbitrary assumption is that a ring equals a year, but observation tells us that this is far from true.

“680,000 snow winter- summer cycles” Bill Nye is also going beyond the evidence by assuming the cause of the ice rings, that fallacy of false cause and effect. This story has been refuted long ago. In fact, the reason that scientists who believe in billions of years come up with such long ages is that they assume billions of years to begin with. This is the logical fallacy of circular reasoning, assuming the conclusion to prove the conclusion. They do a similar thing in Antarctica and publish it as "science." (article: Do ice cores show many tens of thousands of years? No.) Many cycles can be formed each year as evidenced by some World War II planes that landed there in Iceland. There are snow ice cylinders, that have many layers, but the layers cannot possibly be winter/summer cycles. This is the logical fallacy of appeal to presumption, alleged certainty, and jumping to conclusions. Bill Nye is assuming that these layers are winter/summer cycles. This is also the logical fallacy of stacking the deck. Bill Nye may have been ignorant of the fact that some planes went down in Greenland during World War II--perhaps someone stacked the deck with him telling him only selective evidence. Such a tactic (selective evidence) is commonplace in the schools, since they have an a priori commitment to the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story. Forty-six years later, the planes were found deep under the ice and snow, 250 feet. So, actual observation shows that Bill Nye’s example of the ice cores actually represents only about 2,000 years. If Bill Nye was aware of this, he knowingly committed a fallacy, but if he was unaware of this, then he still committed a fallacy but not with intent to deceive.

"Let's just run some numbers. This is some scenes from lovely Antarctic. Let's say we have 680,000 layers of snow ice and 4,000 years since the great flood. That would mean we would need 170 winter-summer cycles every year for the last 4,000 years." Mr Nye is using the logical fallacy of misused statistics. This relates back to previously jumping to conclusions about the cause of the ice rings. 

"I mean, wouldn't someone have noticed that? (laughing) Wow! (laughing) Wouldn't someone have noticed that there's been winter-summer-winter-summer 170 times one year?" Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of appeal to ridicule. While this logical fallacy definitely works--no one likes to be ridiculed--it is irrational. A better tack would be to use real reason. However, real reasoning cannot be used to prove lies, so this is why Atheists rely on fallacies.

Most importantly, this so-called evidence conflicts directly with what God says to us by divine revelation as He communicates to our innermost minds through the Bible. And His revelation can be tested and verified because everyone who seeks Him finds Him. We can't go beyond what He tells us, and, when we do, He shows us to be liars. This is what happens with many theologies that go beyond the Bible. But every person can find Jesus and know His moment-by-moment leading. And the Holy Spirit will reveal that the Bible is the Word of God without error, that it must be understood by the revelation of the Holy Spirit, just as the physical world around us must be understood by revelation. So, Bill Nye's claim is in conflict with known fact.

 



Author/Compiler
Last updated: Oct, 2014
 
 




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Logical Fallacy of Proof by Fallacy

Proof Surrogate / Evidence Surrogate

Error in Observation

Misrepresenting the Facts Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Distorted Evidence

Logical Fallacy of Unverified Evidence

Logical Fallacy of Hysteron Proteron

The Logical Fallacy of Unsubstantiated Inference

Assuming Facts Not In Evidence

Logical Fallacy of Wishful Thinking

Logical Fallacy of Appeal to Worldview / Appeal to Fake-Reality / Appeal to Paradigm / Appeal to Confirmation Bias

Logical Fallacy of Slippery Slope

Logical Fallacy of Limited Scope

Logical Fallacy of Mind Reading

Logical Fallacy of Shoehorning

Logical Fallacy of Confirmation Bias

Sacred Cow Fallacy

Fantasy Projection / Worldview Projection / Fake-Reality Projection / Paradigm Projection / Context Projection

Group Think Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Context Imposition

Psychologist's Fallacy

The Logical Fallacy ofAmazing Familiarity

Stolen Concept Fallacy / Smuggled Concept Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Weak Inference

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Theoretical Stories

The Logical Fallacy of Anecdotal Evidence Presented as Scientific Evidence / Personal Testimony Presented as Scientific Evidence

Logical Fallacy of Dismissing All Personal Testimony

Logical Fallacy of Rewriting History / Have it Your Way

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Model

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Assumption

Logical Fallacy of Argument from Personal Incredulity / Personal Belief / Personal Conviction

Logical Fallacy of Argument by Lack of Imagination

Logical Fallacy of Argument by Imagination

The Logical Fallacy of Capturing the Naive / Argumentum ad Captandum / Argumentum ad Captandum Vulgus

Logical Fallacy of Argument from Personal Astonishment

Logical Fallacy of Special Pleading

Logical Fallacy of Variant Imagization

Logical Fallacy of Self-Exclusion

Logical Fallacy of Unintended Self-Inclusion

Ad Personam Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Assertion / Proof by Repeated Assertion

Logical Fallacy of Cherishing the Zombie

Logical Fallacy of Argumentum Ad Lapidem

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Understatement / Misunderstanding by Understatement

Logical Fallacy of Proof by Logical Tautology

Logical Fallacy of Proof by False Declaration of Victory

Logical Fallacy of Assumption Correction Assumption

False Criteria Fallacy / Fallacy of Questionable Criteria

Logical Fallacy of Cutting Off Discussion / Summary Dismissal

Logical Fallacy of Thought-Terminating Cliche / ClicheThinking

Logical Fallacy of Truism

Logical Fallacy of the Perfect Solution / Nirvana Fallacy / Perfect Solution Fallacy / Perfectionist Fallacy

Just In Case Fallacy / Worst Case Scenario Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Unwarranted Extrapolation

Logical Fallacy of Untestability

Logical Fallacy of Subjectivity / Relativist Fallacy / Subjectivist Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Bizarre Hypothesis/Theory / Far-Fetched Hypothesis/Theory

Logical Fallacy of Least Plausible Hypothesis

Logical Fallacy of Extravagant Hypothesis / Complex Hypothesis Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Privileging the Hypothesis

Logical Fallacy of Canceling Hypotheses

Logical Fallacy of Appeal to False Faith

Logical Fallacy of False Appeal to Heaven / Appeal to Heaven / Gott Mit Uns / Manfest Destiny / Special Covenant

Logical Fallacy of Inaccurate Models

Logical Fallacy of Hedging / Having Your Cake / Failure to Assert / Diminished Claim / Failure to Choose Sides / Talking out of Both Sides of Your Mouth / If by Whiskey

Preacher's "We" / Salesman's "We" / Politician's "We" Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Appeal to Nature

Logical Fallacy of Experimenter Bias

Fallacy of the Crucial Experiment

Logical Fallacy of Argument from Hearsay / Telephone Game / Chinese Whispers / Anecdotal Evidence / Volvo Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Ad Hoc Rescue / Ad Hoc Hypothesis

The Logical Fallacy of Hindsight Bias / Knew-it-all-Along Effect / Creeping Determinism

Logical Fallacy of Continuum / Argument of the Beard / Fallacy of the Beard / Heap Fallacy / Heap Paradox Fallacy / Bald Man Fallacy / Continuum Fallacy / Line Drawing Fallacy / Sorites Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Argument from Fallacy / Argumentum Ad Logicam

Logical Fallacy of Inflation of Conflict

Logical Fallacy of Infinite Regress / Homunculus Argument

The Logical Fallacy of Reification / Anti-Conceptual Mentality Fallacy / Attributing Concreteness to the Abstract / Concretism / Hypostatization Fallacy / Objectification

Logical Fallacy of Reification / Personification

Logical Fallacy Slothful Induction

Logical Fallacy of Superstitious Thinking / Magical Thinking

Logical Fallacy of Meaningless Question

Logical Fallacy of Proving Non-Existence

Argumentum ad Imaginibus

Statement of Conversion Fallacy

Logical Fallacy of Outdated Information

Logical Fallacy of Argument by Laziness

Alien Fallacy

Quantum Physics Fallacy

Fallacious Abstraction Fallacy

Appeal to the Untested / Appeal to the Unknown Fallacy

Grasping at Straws

Appeal to Pragmatism Fallacy / Pragmatic Fallacy / Appeal to Convenience / Pragmatism / Appeal to Utility / Argumentum Ad Convenientiam

Appeal to Fake Hope

Appeal to Intuition Fallacy

Appeal to Mystery Fallacy

Argument from Design Fallacy

Untestability Fallacy

Fallacy of Imaginary Evidence

Monopolizing the Question / Hypophora

Fallacy of Antecedent / Fallacy of Time

Faulty Sign / Faulty Predictor Fallacy

Pretentious Antecedent

Logical Fallacy of Pretentious Premise


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