evil and God
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23-06-2016, 10:28 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 08:45 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  The Kalam Cosmological argument which proposes that anything within the natural realm must adhere to the below--

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause of its beginning.
2. The universe began to exist.
3. Therefore, the universe has a cause of its beginning.

Several discoveries determine that universe is expanding which demonstrates it had a beginning.

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause of its beginning.
What do you mean by "begins to exist"?
ex-nihilo (from nothing): the only things that I am aware of that may fall into this category would be virtual particles and particle/antiparticle pair creations which, as far as we can tell, are uncaused events; if so, this premise is just false
ex-materia (assembled from existing stuff): that certainly appears to be true in the day-to-day world within the universe that we experience but our common sense in this area does not necessarily extrapolate well to the universe itself

2. The universe began to exist.
You would need to clarify what you mean by "universe". The universe as we see it now has been traced back some 14-15 billion years to a point where our understanding of how things work breaks down under the extreme conditions. That is a kind of a beginning but doesn't say anything about whether the energy that makes up our universe was created at that point or existed in some other configuration before that point. If time began at that point then questions of "before" or creation are essentially meaningless.

3. Therefore, the universe has a cause of its beginning.
The premises need to mean creation ex-nihilo in order to support where this argument is going but that is a problem. If our current understanding is correct then the only creation form nothing that we suspect actually exists does not require a cause and premise 1 is false.

If we limit the argument to creation from existing material then premise 2 reduces to "the current configuration of our observable universe can be traced back to a specific point". We can say nothing more that that. It would support the conclusion but in a trivial way that doesn't support the claim of a creator.

There is also a category error here in that it is attempting to apply the laws of physics that operate within the universe to the universe itself or even to something "outside" the universe. We can't say that the same rules apply.

Finally, even if I granted both premises and the conclusion, it would not mean that we had an answer for what that cause was. Theists claim it had to be a supernatural being which strikes me mainly as a sign of a poor imagination. You can't rule out some other universe, or universes, with different rules that caused a new universe to be born. You can't rule out something from nothing (it sounds counter-intuitive but that's true of many things including relativity and quantum mechanics -- reality is stranger than we can fully conceive). You can't rule out something even odder that we haven't though of yet.

The best answer to how the universe got here is "we don't know". Claiming to know anything else is an argument from ignorance/god-of-the-gaps fallacy.

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23-06-2016, 10:33 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 10:28 AM)unfogged Wrote:  
(23-06-2016 08:45 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  The Kalam Cosmological argument which proposes that anything within the natural realm must adhere to the below--

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause of its beginning.
2. The universe began to exist.
3. Therefore, the universe has a cause of its beginning.

Several discoveries determine that universe is expanding which demonstrates it had a beginning.

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause of its beginning.
What do you mean by "begins to exist"?
ex-nihilo (from nothing): the only things that I am aware of that may fall into this category would be virtual particles and particle/antiparticle pair creations which, as far as we can tell, are uncaused events; if so, this premise is just false
ex-materia (assembled from existing stuff): that certainly appears to be true in the day-to-day world within the universe that we experience but our common sense in this area does not necessarily extrapolate well to the universe itself

2. The universe began to exist.
You would need to clarify what you mean by "universe". The universe as we see it now has been traced back some 14-15 billion years to a point where our understanding of how things work breaks down under the extreme conditions. That is a kind of a beginning but doesn't say anything about whether the energy that makes up our universe was created at that point or existed in some other configuration before that point. If time began at that point then questions of "before" or creation are essentially meaningless.

3. Therefore, the universe has a cause of its beginning.
The premises need to mean creation ex-nihilo in order to support where this argument is going but that is a problem. If our current understanding is correct then the only creation form nothing that we suspect actually exists does not require a cause and premise 1 is false.

If we limit the argument to creation from existing material then premise 2 reduces to "the current configuration of our observable universe can be traced back to a specific point". We can say nothing more that that. It would support the conclusion but in a trivial way that doesn't support the claim of a creator.

There is also a category error here in that it is attempting to apply the laws of physics that operate within the universe to the universe itself or even to something "outside" the universe. We can't say that the same rules apply.

Finally, even if I granted both premises and the conclusion, it would not mean that we had an answer for what that cause was. Theists claim it had to be a supernatural being which strikes me mainly as a sign of a poor imagination. You can't rule out some other universe, or universes, with different rules that caused a new universe to be born. You can't rule out something from nothing (it sounds counter-intuitive but that's true of many things including relativity and quantum mechanics -- reality is stranger than we can fully conceive). You can't rule out something even odder that we haven't though of yet.

The best answer to how the universe got here is "we don't know". Claiming to know anything else is an argument from ignorance/god-of-the-gaps fallacy.

Thanks for the replies. If one is open to the realization of the possibilities of counter-intuitives, why would the supernatural be so easily discounted as one of the possibilities?
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23-06-2016, 10:37 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 09:38 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Wouldn't it be more probable that a timeless, spaceless, immaterial creator who has no beginning since He created time, space, and material matter is the cause rather than any other proposition?

How are you calculating the probability? How do you know a supernatural cause for which we have no direct evidence is more likely than some natural cause for which we have no direct evidence?

How can an intelligence exist if it is timeless, spaceless, and immaterial? We have no examples of anything like that and no reason to believe that it is even a coherent concept. A mind produces thoughts and that requires that something be holding those thoughts (implying space and material) and time for the thoughts to form.

Why does it make sense that an immensely complex mind always existed but simple matter/energy had to be created?

The god answer raises far more questions than it answers.

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23-06-2016, 10:38 AM
RE: evil and God
What do you mean by supernatural?

If something manifests in reality then, by definition, it can be examined by natural means. If it does not then who cares.
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23-06-2016, 10:42 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 10:33 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Thanks for the replies. If one is open to the realization of the possibilities of counter-intuitives, why would the supernatural be so easily discounted as one of the possibilities?

If you aren't going to actually interact on discussions this will very quickly become fruitless.

I am open to anything for which evidence can be produced. There is no evidence for anything supernatural that can't be better explained naturally. Anybody who thinks the supernatural is a possible answer needs to first explain how we can test that conjecture. If we can't test it then it is not something we can confirm or deny and that makes it irrelevant. It also means that it is not rational to believe that it exists in any meaningful sense of the word.

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23-06-2016, 10:46 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 10:33 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Thanks for the replies. If one is open to the realization of the possibilities of counter-intuitives, why would the supernatural be so easily discounted as one of the possibilities?

Easily discounted? I'd say the effort to disprove all the other supernatural claims made by humans, through the work of science, has been anything but easy.

However, at this point, we have disproved almost literally every claim made by humans about supernatural causations.

Why, then, should we assume that anything has a supernatural cause, as opposed to the simpler conclusion that "humans like to make stuff up"?

You are suggesting that we have closed our minds to the possibility, simply because we do not subscribe to one of your pet ideas. That is false. Scientific thinkers are always open to any possibility, but we withhold belief until such a time as actual evidence has been presented. We can, however, hold opinions based on the pattern, and the pattern is clear: humans make up stories about intelligent agency, even where the is none, as has been proven time and again.

Why should we remotely begin to accept, without evidence (and don't start with that "the evidence is everywhere" BS... it's not), that your particular story about intelligent agency is any different than the gods of thunder and lightning?

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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23-06-2016, 11:04 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 09:24 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  
(23-06-2016 09:05 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Agreed. However, these premises I think point to a cause outside of the natural realm since this cause created the natural realm.

No. It indicates that at this time our scientific abilities can only take us back to the instant of the Big Bang.
Quote:Extrapolation of the expansion of the universe backwards in time using general relativity yields an infinite density and temperature at a finite time in the past.

Link

(23-06-2016 09:05 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  That would bring into possibility the existence of the supernatural.

Or maybe the universe was shat into existence by Cthulhu. Once you start making shit up, anything is possible.

(23-06-2016 09:05 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Since the supernatural cannot be observed or repeated through our scientific method which can only measure "natural" processes, it should not be discounted.

Since the supernatural has never been observed or studied through scientific methods, it should automatically be discounted.

(23-06-2016 09:05 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  Many possibilities could be derived but the most plausible would be the Abrahamic God and His declaration of creation in Genesis 1.

Least plausible. Seriously. You go from the god-of-the-gaps fallacy, saying "a god could exist" to "IT WAS MY GAAAWWD!! PRAISE JEEEBUS!!!"

Bullshit.
Hey don't drag the mighty Cthulhu's name into this inane argument. Cthulhu deserves better.

Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored- Aldous Huxley
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23-06-2016, 11:10 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 11:04 AM)devilsadvoc8 Wrote:  Hey don't drag the mighty Cthulhu's name into this inane argument. Cthulhu deserves better.

True. The mythology is better written and more consistent. Thumbsup

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23-06-2016, 11:15 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 09:05 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  However, these premises I think point to a cause outside of the natural realm since this cause created the natural realm. That would bring into possibility the existence of the supernatural.

Please clarify what you mean by this natural-supernatural distinction. In particular, if we were to examine some particular phenomenon or concept, how would we identify it as belong to the category of "natural" or "supernatural", without referring to those terms as if we already knew what they meant?
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23-06-2016, 11:30 AM
RE: evil and God
(23-06-2016 10:33 AM)godisinspiteofevil Wrote:  If one is open to the realization of the possibilities of counter-intuitives, why would the supernatural be so easily discounted as one of the possibilities?

Have you considered the possibility that magical unicorns exist?
If not, on what basis did you discount the possibilities?

Have you considered the possibility that faeries exist?
If not, on what basis did you discount the possibilities?

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Freedom offers opportunity. Opportunity confers responsibility. Responsibility to use the freedom we enjoy wisely, honestly and humanely. ~ Noam Chomsky
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