Atheism and Occam's Razor
One of the most misunderstood and misused concepts in philosophy is Occam’s Razor. Note that the previous sentence says “in philosophy”, not “in logic.” This idea is most coherently phrased as, “Plurality ought never be posited without necessity.” The vast majority of misapplications occur when this idea is treated as a regulation, rather than a rule of thumb. Occam’s Razor (O.R.) is a philosophical guideline, and its application is therefore highly subject to interpretation. The “razor” moniker is particularly appropriate to this idea, given the way it is often applied. Razors meant to shave hair away from skin can be misused to slice through skin as well. The fact that a modern razor can be physically used in this way doesn’t automatically make that use appropriate or necessary – and the same idea applies philosophically. Just because someone can slice up an idea using Occam’s Razor doesn’t mean that they’ve done something constructive.