Why the Supernatural (Probably) Doesn't Exist

Posted by : Rev. Ouabache | Thursday, July 30, 2009 | Published in

I know this is ambitious of me, but I'm going to do it anyways. I can prove with a very slight sliver of doubt that the supernatural does not exist. I know what you are saying, "Humans have believed in the supernatural for nigh on 10 millenia now. How can you just disregard all of that evidence?" Simple, there is no evidence for the supernatural and there never will be.

I'll back up a tick though. First let's agree on what we mean when we say "supernatural". Webster's defines it as "of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe". Basically this means stuff that we can't measure scientifically. And that is where I start to have problems with this supernatural business. If something exists and has an effect on the natural world then it can be measured. If it can be qualified then it can be quantified. The problem with the supernatural is that there is no consistently reliable way to gain knowledge about it. People always end up with wildly different results (or no results at all). Humans have a funny habit of finding false signals in noise. Furthermore if do find a way to consistently gain knowledge about a subject, then by definition it is natural.

If you stop and think about it, what the word "supernatural" really means is "stuff that I don't understand right now". It has always been a placeholder until a better natural explanation comes along. The sun rising in the morning and setting in the evening wasn't because of some giant scarab rolling it across the sky. It is because of the way the earth rotates on its axis. Lightning isn't created by an angry god on a mountain, it was created by ions in the atmosphere. The weird noises you heard in the night weren't caused by disembodied spirits who got lost on the way to the Other Side. It was the stray cat knocking over a trash can. Everything always ends up having a natural explanation in the long run.

But there is one other very very slim possibility. This is always the off chance that Eris (or some other Trickster God) really does exist and enjoys royally fucking with us. Perhaps She is constantly changing evidence on us. She is changing the molecules in our test tube. She is making us see things out of the corner of our eye. She is making us hear voices that aren't there. She is knocking over our vases and moving our chairs in the middle of the night. Why? Because she is in it for the lulz.

comments

  1. Anonymous

    You're most likely correct. I particularly liked the mention of the stray cat knocking over the trash can. lol.

    Sean

    April 13, 2013 at 6:05 AM

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