Just look at this comment from RJ! I rest my case.
My argument is not that we should "reach a supernatural conclusion". My argument is that we should accept the historical testimony of the Israelites based on three factors:
1 - The magnitude of the events and their involvement of the entire Jewish population
Sorry, but the 'magnitude of the events' actually works against TMS, not for it. Just think about it: The Torah claims that 2 million slaves left Egypt after 10 incredible miracles. The entire Egyptian army drwoned chasing them, while they were miraculously saved by a split sea. Then, 2 million people travelled through the desert for 40 years (with quite a few miracles on the way), 2 million people witnessed God Himself, and then conquered Israel without ONE SINGLE PIECE OF CORROBORATING EVIDENCE ANYWHERE?????? Which is the more likely scenario? All this happened, but for some strange reason NOBODY ELSE IN THE WORLD NOTICED? Or, the myth grew over time? At best, this whole line of argument proves absolutely nothing. At worst, it proves that TMS cannot possibly be true.
2 - The significance of the events and their role as the basis of the theological, cultural and political establishment in Israel, which was unlike any other system before or since, and made significant demands on the populace to give up the temptations enjoyed by their neighbors
A religion making significant demansd? Oh well, then it must be true!!! Hello??!! Have you ever heard of Islam??? Have you ever heard of cults??? Have you ever heard of religious indoctrination???? Have you ever heard of people willingly sacrificing things to appease the gods??? You claim to have studied religion. Doesn't sound like it to me! Also, Tenach itself disproves your arguments. The Bnai Yisroel worshipped idols for almost a thousand years after Matan Torah is claimed to have happened. Any changes in their behavior happened gradually. And, giving up Baal Peor Worship or Molech Worship is hardly a demand. Which is better - sacrificing animals to the one true God, or playing with faeces and burning your children to death?
3 - The unlikelihood that a group of people who would have wanted to oppose the implications of these stories simultaneously having a hand in developing and embellishing them;
What on earth are you talking about?? All religions develop over time. How do you think Christianity or Islam developed? The evolution of religions is well documented in general.
alternatively, the unlikelihood of the neviim trying to use stories that the masses did not recognize as their history (YT"M, receiving laws and standards from Moshe, etc.) in order to convince them.
Again, the myth grew over time. You have no idea what actually happened with the Neviim. Also, the Neviim by and large preached social justice. They were hardly advocating chumras in halachah.
This argument leads to a conclusion which is implausible in the sense of being unconventional, i.e., involving Divine intervention.
Rubbish. Your arguments lead nowhere at all, except to someone already convinced.
Any alternative scenario will be implausible from the standpoint of logistics - it will have to posit the occurrence of events and gradual changes in the history of the Jewish people as well as the existence of individuals facilitating these developments - although its conclusion will be more palatable to the skeptic because it doesn't invoke the supernatural.
Events and gradual changes????? Individuals facilitating these changes???? Like, that couldn't possibly happen in a religion!!!! No way!!!!
Are you nuts? No, just fundamentally incapable of seeing how distorted your 'arguments' are. Every one of your arguments works just as well for Islam as for Judaism. What's the matter with you???
This is the reason I believe these discussions go nowhere, as BHB and I recently concluded on his blog. I am open to the possibility of the supernatural having occurred if there is compelling evidence and it is the most plausible explanation for it. He (and other skeptics) is happier with a less plausible scenario that produces a less objectionable result, i.e., avoiding the supernatural. We left it at that.
Utter nonsense. Your scenario is ridiculous. Your arguments are incredibly lame. And we haven't even touched the content of the book, and all the issues with that.
This is also why I have never considered Kuzari a "proof", just a good argument that makes other explanations implausible. Suggesting it is a proof is intellectually dishonest in my opinion.
I don't think I have anything further to add. Generally these debates are not fruitful because of the above mentioned factors.
No, they are not fruitful because your arguments are miserably pathetic, but being a fundamentalist, you couldn't admit to that even if a gun was held to your head. You really just proved my point better than any article I could ever have written.
You are obviously an intelligent, well read and articulate person. You are not even a hard core chareidi! But still, you cannot face reality.