[for the benefit of those living overseas or who missed The Big Questions on January 15th or the iPlayer version while it was up]
Are you unconvinced about the existence of God? Sceptical about claims of supernatural beings, miracles, virgin births, spiritual dimensions and an afterlife? Well great news. BBC One went to the trouble to invite a wide range of people from a variety of faiths and denominations and giving them a whole hour to present this gripping evidence in front of a handful of atheists: me, evolutionary biologist Diana Fleischman, Prof Peter Atkins and journalist David Aaronovitch.
Key highlights include:
"There's no evolutionary basis for altruism" Yes there is, it helps the survival of those around you, all of whom will be carrying at least some of your genes.
"I just feel like there's a God-shaped gap in my life" Yes many people feel things like loneliness or insecurity. But the presence of a void doesn't prove the existence of something that fills that void. By that argument ever colander is a bowl. [Also if you believe every hole should be filled - that's a pro-rape argument, though I didn't say anything so shocking on the show!]
"I know God exists from the really strong feeling I get when I see a landscape or hear great music". Right what about when you have an orgasm? Is that a strong enough feeling? And if God gave you the joy of music, she must have also given you that feeling of nausea when you see maggots. [Actually Diana Fleischman had just come from a conference on disgust!]
"When personal tragedy struck, I wanted God to exist and so I decided to believe" Does this have anything to do with evidence? "No". Ok.
"God appeared to me personally when I was in prison for committing hundreds of crimes and spoke to me (in English)" Shame she didn't show up BEFORE you ruined all those victims' lives.
Here's what didn't happen:
"I prayed to Allah and my amputated leg grew back"
"Jesus spoke to me in a dream and here he is, I brought him on TV with me, so you can all see it wasn't a hallucination"
Also as previously discussed, this is the episode where I compare the Qu'ran to Harry Potter. Deep apologies to Harry Potter fans everywhere!