Hello and welcome back to another post on the resurrection of Christ. Following the last post/video on the substitution hypothesis (make sure you check it out if you haven’t), I will be covering the second hypothesis that skeptics raise regularly to explain the 8 historical facts, the Hallucination Hypothesis. Alongside the stolen body hypothesis, this is perhaps one of the stronger hypotheses out there that you may encounter and it is important for us to be prepared to face it.
What is the hallucination hypothesis?
The hallucination hypothesis is basically the suggestion that the post-mortem appearances of Christ were the result of hallucinations of the disciples and Jesus didn’t actually appear to them.
Why this hypothesis fails?
There are two main reasons why this hallucination fails to explain the 8 historical facts.
1) It fails to explain the reality of the empty tomb
2) It is highly improbable
Failure to account for empty tomb:
In a previous video on my channel, (link is here), I have discussed the historical account of the empty tomb. This is a fact which is supported by Christian and Jewish sources alike. Even if we accept the idea that the hallucination hypothesis (HH) successfully accounts for the post-mortem appearances, it fails to account for the empty tomb. Since hallucinations are a non-physical phenomena caused by an individual’s brain, it only follows that they should be causally effete in regards to events in the actual world. Hence, they fail to explain why the tomb was empty three days after the burial of Christ.
In response, some people may suggest that the disciples stole the body of Christ. However, this combination of two hypotheses appears to be contradictory, they cannot both be true. If the disciples stole the body of Christ, it is obvious that they would know that Jesus did not actually resurrect and is actually dead. It would be inexplicable for them to then have hallucinations of a living breathing Jesus who they could interact with. Therefore, these two hypotheses are mutually exclusive.
It is highly improbable:
The HH also fails in its probability. Not only is an individual hallucination quite rare, when you take into account the number of times Jesus appeared to the disciples and the fact that they all experienced the same hallucination in groups, the situation just becomes very improbable.
Due to these two simple yet effective rebuttals, I believe that the HH fails in providing a suitable reason for the eight historical facts that I have established on my youtube channel. I will be uploading a youtube video on this topic later and feel free to check that out if you are interested.
In the remainder of this hypothesis debunking section of this series, I would be covering the following hypotheses: Jesus didn’t die, Disciples made the account up, Disciples stole the body.
If you have any other hypothesis that you would like me to address, feel free to comment below.