Extraordinary Claims

Atheist: Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.
Christian: You mean extraordinary claims like “everything came from nothing for no reason”?
Atheist: What are you talking about?
Christian: Isn’t that your claim: that everything came from nothing?
Atheist: Well, not nothing, exactly -- more like quantum foam acted upon by the laws of physics.
Christian: Thanks for the clarification… but where did those come from?
Atheist: They just… are.
Christian: “Brute facts”?
Atheist: Yes, exactly.
Christian: So you’re still ok with “for no reason”?
Atheist: We don’t need any reason, we know that they exist empirically.
Christian: I’m not asking for a reason “that” they exist -- I’d like to know “why?”
Atheist: If there is a reason, we could never know it.
Christian: That’s sounding much more like agnosticism than atheism.
Atheist: Either one is more sensible than your "brute fact" god for which there is no empirical evidence.
Christian: God is not, and has never been a “brute fact”.
Atheist: But your claim to his existence is also “for no reason”.
Christian: On the contrary, the claim that God exists relies on sound principles.
Atheist: Do tell.
Christian: As the sufficient cause of the universe, God’s “competition” is not “nothing” (which is woefully insufficient) but is an infinite regress of natural causes, perhaps involving unobserved phenomena such as multiverses.
Atheist: But doesn’t your god also need a cause -- inserting him into his own infinite regress of causes?
Christian: Actually, no: the fact that an uncaused cause is preferable to an infinite regress is sufficient for us to consider the idea seriously. And as Aquinas put it, “this [uncaused cause] all men call ‘God’”
Atheist: What if I prefer the infinite regress?
Christian: You may -- you just can't pretend that an infinite regress is less extraordinary a claim than an uncaused cause, or that you have any more evidence (extraordinary or otherwise) for it.