"God is self-existent"
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03-02-2015, 07:12 PM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(31-01-2015 07:49 AM)Learner Wrote:  What is the best way to respond to the theist response to the atheist argument "Who created God?", when the theist says, "Well, nobody created God because God is self-existent!" (As with most, if not all theist arguments, the level of their arguments and responses seems too simplistic and childish and assuming to me, but I want to know the best way to respond to their lame arguments.)

Word games are the lowest form of debate. it shows the debater knows he/she doesn't have a leg to stand on, so they start playing with definitions...

You cannot state with any degree of validity that the first causal theory doesn't apply to the mythical egocentric abrahamic god because you have the unique opinion he is the "eternal god", thus wasn't "caused". How did you arrive at that thought? How did you ascertain your version of "god" is eternal? Which god by the way? There are so many, yet each fan club thinks their god is the only god, the true god and the only true religion. The irony of that kills me.

The major premise of the argument, ""everything had a cause," is contradicted by the conclusion that "god did not have a cause." You can't have it both ways. If everything had to have had a cause, then there could not be a first cause. If it is possible to think of a god as uncaused, then it is possible to think the same of the universe.

Some theists, observing that all "effects" need a cause, assert that god is a cause but not an effect. But no one has ever observed an uncaused cause and simply inventing one merely assumes what the argument wishes to prove. If a god can be thought eternal, then so can the universe. The word "cause" is a transitive verb. Causality requires temporality. If god exists outside of time, he cannot cause anything.

The latest spin on this position by christian philosophers like William Lane Craig is that:

1) Everything that begins to exist has a cause.
2) The universe began to exist.
3) Therefore, the universe has a cause.

This may be seductive to those who already believe in a god. To me, it seems awfully suspicious. The clause "Everything that begins to exist" sounds artificial. It is not a phrase we hear outside the context of theistic philosophy. It appears to be an Ad Hoc construction designed to smooth over earlier apologetic efforts.

Tell them, Nice try though.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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03-02-2015, 07:33 PM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(03-02-2015 10:32 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  
(02-02-2015 08:30 PM)guitar_nut Wrote:  I am willing to bet that within 5 minutes of a PM, and perhaps a phone call, I could be more convinced of Learner's existence than god's. That's a pretty amazing accomplishment, since (I'm guessing) Learner hasn't claimed power over all of space and time.

And I think that would be a natural line of reasoning. But perhaps you are familiar with the concept where a person comes to you and says, "You don't exist. This is all in my imagination." This may only be resolved as you asserting that you know you exist "deep down"...

I'm not responsible for resolving the claims of others. Anyone making such a claim must back it up with evidence. The bigger and more contradictory to reality the claim is, the more evidence I will require. It does not become an immediate 50/50 chance that someone is right every time something ludicrous spills from their mouth. I don't need to feel "deep down" that I exist anymore than you need to "feel" that I don't have an invisible squid playing dominoes in my cupboard.

Until new evidence, besides clever wordplay, proves I don't exist... here I be.

If Jesus died for our sins, why is there still sin? If man was created from dust, why is there still dust? If Americans came from Europe, why are there still Europeans?
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03-02-2015, 07:45 PM
RE: "God is self-existent"
One must obtain a license to be self-existent and my records show no such license issued to this god fellow.

My records don't lie.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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03-02-2015, 11:31 PM
RE: "God is self-existent"
I'm trying a new debate tactic:

I say, "Guess what?". Then I slap them in their genitals and walk off.
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04-02-2015, 10:00 AM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(03-02-2015 07:33 PM)guitar_nut Wrote:  
(03-02-2015 10:32 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  And I think that would be a natural line of reasoning. But perhaps you are familiar with the concept where a person comes to you and says, "You don't exist. This is all in my imagination." This may only be resolved as you asserting that you know you exist "deep down"...

I'm not responsible for resolving the claims of others. Anyone making such a claim must back it up with evidence. The bigger and more contradictory to reality the claim is, the more evidence I will require. It does not become an immediate 50/50 chance that someone is right every time something ludicrous spills from their mouth. I don't need to feel "deep down" that I exist anymore than you need to "feel" that I don't have an invisible squid playing dominoes in my cupboard.

Until new evidence, besides clever wordplay, proves I don't exist... here I be.

Unfortunately or fortunately for our discussion, your statements, including "Here I be" are an assertion that you find it self-evident that you exist and that such is the best evidence you have. Until you provide other proof (note how I use the term "prove" rather "evidence", just as atheists like to use that term when asking me about God's existence) - you may not exist at all, I'm afraid.

And anyone other than yourself who wants to provide evidence that you do exist is going to eventually have to say, "It's self evident Guitar Nut exists!" Therefore, you may reply if you like, but I would stand on my testimony that 1) it is self-evident to me (and to billions of others) that God exists 2) the Bible must be accurate when it describes denial of God's existence as one of two things--either denial on the part of an atheist or the atheist has not yet had a personal encounter with God.

PS. If is true as you say that "The bigger and more contradictory to reality the claim is, the more evidence I will require..." then don't spend a lot of time "believing in":

*gravity as being anything besides a mathematical abstraction or the hand of the divine
*dark matter
*the Oort Cloud
*love
*altruism
*etc.

I think what you meant to write instead, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that you don't want to waste your time arguing asinine claims. (Luckily for you I'm here to argue against the special knowledge people have at TTA that no god has ever interacted with us or space aliens in the last 15 Billion years or so, ever.)

And the reason you find it asinine to deny your existence when someone says you're a figment of their imagination is... wait for it... you find it self-evident you exist. It is self-evident to me and to most people that God exists. Shifting the goal posts to argue Pascal's wager or "There are millions of gods, Q!" is simply that.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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04-02-2015, 10:04 AM
RE: "God is self-existent"
As always, I want to know how they can possibly know that, and to provide evidence.

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04-02-2015, 10:10 AM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(04-02-2015 10:00 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Unfortunately or fortunately for our discussion, your statements, including "Here I be" are an assertion that you find it self-evident that you exist and that such is the best evidence you have. Until you provide other proof (note how I use the term "prove" rather "evidence", just as atheists like to use that term when asking me about God's existence) - you may not exist at all, I'm afraid.

And anyone other than yourself who wants to provide evidence that you do exist is going to eventually have to say, "It's self evident Guitar Nut exists!" Therefore, you may reply if you like, but I would stand on my testimony that 1) it is self-evident to me (and to billions of others) that God exists 2) the Bible must be accurate when it describes denial of God's existence as one of two things--either denial on the part of an atheist or the atheist has not yet had a personal encounter with God.

If you want to go through the philosophical route, then each person's reality is that they exist, and the rest might be imagination. But while interesting (and kind of à la Matrix), it's also a waste of time. Whether or not the rest of the world actually exists or not, living as if it does exist, does not create any problems. In fact, it works fine, so we assume that it does, because doing so, everything works according to the logic of this reality. Even if you are a brain in a jar.

Also, God is not self-evident as I am for myself. I can experience myself, with various senses and methods, but I cannot sense or experience God in any way.

(04-02-2015 10:00 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  PS. If is true as you say that "The bigger and more contradictory to reality the claim is, the more evidence I will require..." then don't spend a lot of time "believing in":

*gravity as being anything besides a mathematical abstraction or the hand of the divine
*dark matter
*the Oort Cloud
*love
*altruism
*etc.

How is gravity contradictory to reality? Name one phenomenon that puts gravity in contradiction with reality.

孤独 - The Out Crowd
Life is a flash of light between two eternities of darkness.
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04-02-2015, 10:28 AM (This post was last modified: 04-02-2015 10:37 AM by The Q Continuum.)
RE: "God is self-existent"
(04-02-2015 10:04 AM)Sam Wrote:  As always, I want to know how they can possibly know that, and to provide evidence.

How might you respond if I asked you how you can possibly know you exist, and to provide evidence. What might you do to avoid eventually asserting, "I know I exist, I just know it"?

Or did I misstate what you are asking others regarding God? Aren't those your "two big" questions that I've applied to you, yourself? Applied to me, I'm afraid eventually I'd have to say that, well, cogito ergo sum.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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04-02-2015, 10:36 AM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(04-02-2015 10:10 AM)The Polyglot Atheist Wrote:  
(04-02-2015 10:00 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Unfortunately or fortunately for our discussion, your statements, including "Here I be" are an assertion that you find it self-evident that you exist and that such is the best evidence you have. Until you provide other proof (note how I use the term "prove" rather "evidence", just as atheists like to use that term when asking me about God's existence) - you may not exist at all, I'm afraid.

And anyone other than yourself who wants to provide evidence that you do exist is going to eventually have to say, "It's self evident Guitar Nut exists!" Therefore, you may reply if you like, but I would stand on my testimony that 1) it is self-evident to me (and to billions of others) that God exists 2) the Bible must be accurate when it describes denial of God's existence as one of two things--either denial on the part of an atheist or the atheist has not yet had a personal encounter with God.

If you want to go through the philosophical route, then each person's reality is that they exist, and the rest might be imagination. But while interesting (and kind of à la Matrix), it's also a waste of time. Whether or not the rest of the world actually exists or not, living as if it does exist, does not create any problems. In fact, it works fine, so we assume that it does, because doing so, everything works according to the logic of this reality. Even if you are a brain in a jar.

Also, God is not self-evident as I am for myself. I can experience myself, with various senses and methods, but I cannot sense or experience God in any way.

(04-02-2015 10:00 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  PS. If is true as you say that "The bigger and more contradictory to reality the claim is, the more evidence I will require..." then don't spend a lot of time "believing in":

*gravity as being anything besides a mathematical abstraction or the hand of the divine
*dark matter
*the Oort Cloud
*love
*altruism
*etc.

How is gravity contradictory to reality? Name one phenomenon that puts gravity in contradiction with reality.

Very good points, and I applaud your reasoning powers here. You raised three issues:

1. If we're all brains in a jar or even we're all your imagination and one brain in a jar, we/you have imagined a world with moral accountability and consequences for moral actions. That lines up with the Christian view of judgment after this Matrix is reset/you/we die. How might the Architect put it? "The function of the One is now to return you to the source, allowing a temporary dissemination of the code you carry, reinserting the prime program into judgment mode."

2. I am sorry you are currently unable to sense or experience god. I do know He has great timing and even irony in the way He orchestrates lives, and that when you do experience Him, you'll both know and (please!) remember my admonition to obey what you hear and see.

3. Gravity is not in contradiction with reality but 1) neither are the miracles of God, most of which I can quickly think of natural explanations for and 2) there is no evidence for gravity's existence besides looking at its effects and saying it must have a natural cause that isn't divine. It is a force that cannot be measured with any human sense (which senses you said are your god-finding tools) or any scientific tool. (A gravimeter could as easily be measuring the divine finger pressure as it is measuring a wave/particles/dark matter etc. that can only be conjectural at this point since it is wholly unseen.)

Put another way, perhaps you should then reconsider archaeology/Bible prophecy/the testimony of others, etc. - anything that could be tested rigorously by you in addition to your senses.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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04-02-2015, 01:08 PM
RE: "God is self-existent"
(04-02-2015 10:36 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Very good points, and I applaud your reasoning powers here. You raised three issues:

1. If we're all brains in a jar or even we're all your imagination and one brain in a jar, we/you have imagined a world with moral accountability and consequences for moral actions. That lines up with the Christian view of judgment after this Matrix is reset/you/we die. How might the Architect put it? "The function of the One is now to return you to the source, allowing a temporary dissemination of the code you carry, reinserting the prime program into judgment mode."

I don't need to imagine a world with moral accountability and consequences for moral actions, I'm living in one. I am accountable for my actions. What makes you think that I'm not? Anything I do has more or less consequences on others, and it directly and indirectly affects their lives, as well as mine, of course.

(04-02-2015 10:36 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  2. I am sorry you are currently unable to sense or experience god. I do know He has great timing and even irony in the way He orchestrates lives, and that when you do experience Him, you'll both know and (please!) remember my admonition to obey what you hear and see.

I did "experience him", in the sense that I have not always been an atheist, I was a believer for most of my life.

(04-02-2015 10:36 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  3. Gravity is not in contradiction with reality but 1) neither are the miracles of God, most of which I can quickly think of natural explanations for and 2) there is no evidence for gravity's existence besides looking at its effects and saying it must have a natural cause that isn't divine. It is a force that cannot be measured with any human sense (which senses you said are your god-finding tools) or any scientific tool. (A gravimeter could as easily be measuring the divine finger pressure as it is measuring a wave/particles/dark matter etc. that can only be conjectural at this point since it is wholly unseen.)

Miracles are in contradiction with reality by their very definition. After all, if they weren't in contradiction, they would be considered regular or usual occurrences in the natural world. So yes, they're in contradiction. If you can think of a miracle that can be explained naturalistically, then it can be no longer called a miracle in the literal sense.

Whether gravity can be sensed by our senses is irrelevant, although I disagree, because we study things that sometimes are not possible to be sensed, yet they exist. Let's take Radio waves: you don't see, taste, smell, hear or touch them, yet you can listen to music on the radio.

Also, gravity has been explained, I won't say fully because I'm not totally into the subject, but I think we know enough to be able to explain the how and why.

(04-02-2015 10:36 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Put another way, perhaps you should then reconsider archaeology/Bible prophecy/the testimony of others, etc. - anything that could be tested rigorously by you in addition to your senses.

Those things are not on the same level. Archaeology is science and it is based on actual discoveries with concrete evidence. I don't know of any Bible prophecy being proved though. And I consider personal testimony to be irrelevant if the claim is not something ordinary or believable, because if you tell me you passed an exam without studying, I could believe it or not, it would be weird but possible. However if you tell me you have a giant pink elephant in your garage, I will dismiss it until you can prove it to me.

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Life is a flash of light between two eternities of darkness.
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