The Raven Paradox.

In all your life, have you ever seen a raven that wasn’t black? That probably leads you to conclude that all ravens are black. Of course, it’s impossible to see every raven that ever existed and ever will exist, but from the evidence you have on hand, it’s pretty fair for you to make the statement, “All ravens are black.” Put into a logical form, the argument looks like this:

Proposition 1: All ravens are black.

Evidence 1: This raven is black.

According to logic, the statement “All ravens are black” has the equivalent form “All non-black things are non-ravens” — or in regular English, “Everything that isn’t black isn’t a raven.” The same way that every black raven you see supports your first conclusion, every non-black non-raven you see (A green apple! A school bus! A Smurf!) supports it, too. This builds upon our argument like this:

Proposition 1: All ravens are black.

Proposition 2: All non-black things are non-ravens.

Evidence 1: This raven is black.

Evidence 2: This green apple is not a raven.

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Though the raven example is almost absurdly simple, the paradox itself highlights a potential issue with the scientific method. Does every piece of evidence — even a piece of evidence unrelated to your topic (e.g. ravens) — really support your hypothesis, just because it doesn’t contradict it? Is the scientific method taking us into fallacious territory?

Ultimately, though, many argue the raven paradox isn’t so paradoxical. Though it doesn’t jibe with our intuition that a green apple would have a bearing on raven’s hue, that’s a problem with our intuition. A green apple does provide an almost imperceptible grain of support for the “All ravens are black” hypothesis. A black raven just provides a lot more. (1)

We all try to find evidence to support our views.

Trying to prove God exists.

But He does not need evidence.

He simply is.

And the evidence is all around us.

Even when they are not.

Or better: especially when there are not.


Look at that raven…

Yes, there is a God.

Look at all the evidence against Him…

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