Sorry for the delay, I haven’t had much sleep the last couple of weeks because of work and other reasons, but I hope this response makes sense despite these conditions. It’s pretty long, and I didn’t even bring up all counter arguments I jotted down on sticky notes here and there, and neither do I go into details of the ones I did bring up.
First of all I’d like to say that these philosophical “proofs” of God’s existence are not new and have been debated a lot between philosophers. Before I begin responding to them, I have to mention that one problem with these Theological Arguments is that they tend to cause new contradictions to arise, which is the case when we as finite beings are trying to understand and semantically express the ideas of infinites. I got a whole book about paradoxes that mostly are based on the problems with the concepts of infinites and infinite sets, and not always are the answers complete or easy to understand.
The philosophical arguments for God’s existence usually lend themselves best to support the Agnostic view, just because they, even though attractive, do not have enough compelling force to change someone into a belief. Contradictions usually arises when we try to define what “perfect”, “time”, “matter”, “space” or “existence” really means. These words describe concepts that can get blurry when we try to explain them on a cosmological level. And this leads to even a stronger case for Non-Cognitivism, because the words can’t really be completely understood, or more accurate, the concepts behind the words can never be completely understood. For example, Time is relative, and Time started at Plank’s Time of the inflation, so each quark, particle, photon “lives” in its own little “bubble” of time and has done so ever since. Our understanding of time isn’t as straight forward as we tend to think, or like to think. Not saying that this disproves the Cosmological argument, but it is an argument that we fail to fully uncover and understand these things, and maybe we’ll never be able to fully do so. We can play as much as we want with word-games and paradoxes and they might never really show what reality is, just because we are nothing more than finite beings.
I will break up my response to the arguments by the traditional groups and explain my view on those first, but I will however start in a reversed order to how the arguments usually are disputed, with my comments about the Teleological first instead of the Cosmological Argument. And since you didn’t bring up the Ontological Argument, I will not bring it up either, except for using the idea in refuting the Teleological Argument. I will then get into more detail of some of your “unique” answers. Teleological Argument Purpose
First of all, what is a purpose? How can something be argued from the standpoint that it seems to have a purpose, when we don’t even know the purpose we’re arguing it to have? If there was a supernatural entity that needed to create the Universe for a purpose, then this entity is/was not complete. He wouldn’t have to create the universe, and he wouldn’t need a purpose for it. If his purpose was to get humans into heaven, he only needed to create them and place them in heaven. To imply the purpose it also implies the need, and God is supposedly perfect and doesn’t need anything.
The universe is estimated to be 13.7 billion years old and modern humans (Homo Sapiens) have existed about 2 million years only (that’s 0.014% of the total lifetime of the Universe). The size of the universe is at least 78 billion light years wide (7.4x10^26 m). The low estimated number of galaxies is 100 billion, and there is about 7x10^22 stars minimum. Earth isn’t bigger than 12,700 km in diameter (which is only 1.8x10^-18% of the size of the Universe). In this enormously vast and old universe, us humans, we are infinitesimal small. How we can consider ourselves to be important or that the purpose must be focused on us is beyond my comprehension. The argument from purpose is completely emotional and based only on the personal perspective where on person see himself as very important in the whole. Some would call that a prideful mind. We’re not important, and there is no purpose. At least, I don’t see it as such. Not saying that I’m not amazed and awed by nature and the fantastic size, but because of how small we are compared to it I can’t see that we are the important part of it. Contemplate this, if each one of us humans divided the universe equally to give name to each star in the universe; each one of us would have 1x10^13 stars to name. If each one of us 6.5 billion people could name one star per second, it would still take us altogether 340,000 years. Doesn’t this make you feel a bit small?
If we were the purpose then God wants to observe us, and it brings up the next question: how can God observe us if he is non-temporal? For God to observe this universe that he had a purpose for, and then he needs to be able to observe us in “real-time”, i.e. what is happening “now”. If he is eternal or timeless, then he doesn’t have a “now”, and can’t observe us. But then if he is temporal, then he must be bound by the same rules of causality as us, which I will argue in the response to the Cosmological Argument below.
And from where would this supposed God be and observe his “beautiful” creation of humans? If God is somehow outside our Universe, then if God looked down on us, he wouldn’t be able to see us in our lifetime. Let’s say I shine a flash light into the sky, it would take at least 40 billion years before he would se it. Then if the idea is raised that he is in a separate dimension, it’ll bring up another question; how does he interact between his universe and our universe? If the argument is that God is omnipresent, then God isn’t much more than the sum of the energy and/or matter in the universe, and this gives us the idea that the Universe is a thinking organism by itself, which would equate God. Then God is the Universe and God is us.
In a godless universe, this kind of universe that we see is what we would expect to see, and arguing from Divine Hiddenness
(yes, it is correctly spelled), God is not to be seen, he doesn’t prove himself, he doesn’t interact with everyone on a daily basis in a convincing manner, and his existence can only be argued with some Philosophical slight of hand. A God that had a purpose and wanted to interact, would do so, and do it to everyone. Unless his purpose is to let it all run on its own, and this would be the foundation to argue for Deism rather than Theism.
Basically 100% of the universe is mechanically following physical laws. There isn’t a specific purpose for the rock to fall to the ground; it only does so because of pull of gravity. It is an automatic and repeatable function of the universe. It never fails. With the large majority of events that is happening, and not purpose driven, but follow fixed patterns and physical laws, where does intelligence come into play to explain natural events?
What we call “purpose” is a human invention. We are the result of the process of the universe; we are children of the universe, so of course we see pattern, purpose and intent in it. We judge it based on how we fit in into it, and how everything else fits into it. Of course it all does and of course we do. If we didn’t fit in and things didn’t hang together, then our existence would be the true miracle, and only then would we see there must be something beyond our world.
As humans we tend to fall for the transcendental temptation and try to explain what is too big for us to understand with something even bigger and fancier and beyond our world. And we are tempted to contemplate over the traits and attributes on this “ultimate biggest thing”, and give it the same traits and attributes as humans have. How can we say that this God necessitates the trait of “purpose”? How can we, without a twitch in our conscious, limit the definition of God to the image of man, only in our selfish purpose of explaining things? How can anyone of us claim to know the “purpose” of a being that is not even corporeal?Argument from Design The Perfect World
Let us borrow a little from the method used by the Ontological Argument to argue against this one. Usually Anselm’s Ontological Argument starts with the “if the idea of God is the idea of a being than which none greater can be conceived, the God’s existence is undeniable.” Let us reformulate that one a little, “if the idea of Heaven is the idea of a place that is greater and more perfect than can be conceived, then Heaven’s existence is undeniable.” And here’s the problem, if you can imagine such a place then this world, our world, is not perfect; if this world is not perfect then the argument that God must have created it because it is perfect isn’t an argument anymore.The world looks Designed
The reason why we think this world looks designed is because we’re part of it. We are creatures that see patterns, even in things where there are no patterns. Some people see eyes and faces in marble slates, wood doors and tile. Those images were not “created” or “designed”, but we connect dots in our minds, and this causes us to see “patterns” in nature that we think are designed.
Let us talk about the Watchmaker argument for a second. The Designer argument is an argument from analogy. And the conclusion is only as compelling as the strength of the analogy. A watch isn’t made by one person only, and mostly today not even done by humans at all, but by robots in a factory. Are we to say that the Universe is a product of a group of assembly line gods or a robot that put it together? We know robots do a better job than humans in the assembly process, so why not! The Universe was created by a Robot!
Most people have a problem with such a statement, because they want something or someone to be responsible at the end of the line with the intellect of thinking through the “design”. But still, the argument of design does not exclude a possibility of a mechanical process to fabricate the universe, and since we can’t find an argument to support or deny that proposition, then the thought that our particular universe must have been designed by an intellectual God is not really necessary. We could say God created the Robot that created our Universe. Or God created the Super-Robot that created the Robot that created our Universe. The answer is, we don’t know, we’re just guessing here. And we do it because of how we feel and not what we know.
Another counter argument is why there is such waste and poor design in so many places. We come back to the size of the universe, which is a complete waste of energy and space. We can also look at how we fight in the world because we can’t agree on things or agree on religion. What is so intelligent behind the design of cancer, crazy people murdering innocent and bacteria? It is estimated that 5 million trillion trillion bacteria exists in the world (5x10^30), more than the number of stars in the universe.
If it all was designed, God could have done a better job, simply because I can imagine a better world than this.The Fine Tuned World
Then we have the argument of the fine tuned world. If one parameter was off a little, the whole universe would collapse. This might be true, but since we haven’t figured out all the components or workings of the universe, we can’t say yet if there could be a different tuned universe that also could work.
If we would imagine that the world is based on a set of prime numbers, and these prime numbers have to be related in a certain way to each other to establish a functioning and balanced universe. We know there is an infinite number of prime numbers. Then there is a probability that we could find several sets where the prime numbers satisfy the balanced and fine tuned universe. In other words, there could be other kinds of universes that are also fine tuned, but doesn’t look that same as ours.The Complex God
God must be more complex than the universe. That is the basis for the argument of Design. A watch requires a human with a brain. Is the brain a simpler construct than the watch? No. So God as a designer must be more complex the its design. A watch needs several human beings to be design, and nowadays a watch requires machines to build it, and also, a watch requires existing material to be reworking into the pieces.
By using the Watch Maker allegory for the Design Argument, we must conclude the following about God:
1) God is more intelligent and complex than the universe
2) God is larger in spatial size than the universe
3) God must have had help
4) God could have used machinery
5) God must have used existing matter and energy
The reason why the Watch Maker allegory doesn’t fly so well is because it compares a physical object in correlation to how it exists in the physical world and how it relates further to physical beings. But the Watch Maker is then used to “prove” there must be a Non-Physical being working with Metaphysical properties and Physical properties to create Physical Objects. If the allegory should be taken the whole way, God must be a physical being and be bound by the same laws as the physical beings.Aquinas’ Cosmological Argument
I will argue that even granted that the logical structure of the Cosmological Argument is coherent and consistent; it will still lead to paradoxes.
First of all it presupposes there must be some entity that can exist without being observed and without having a cause, while all that we can observe have to have a cause. In the Cosmological Argument we’re forced (without evidence) to accept that all that exists have a contingence, while there is a top function that is without the same contingence. God somehow have to exist, but yet not exist according to the rules of existence. We are forced to accept that all that we can observe is following rules of causality in time, while the root entity that we can’t observe should not follow the same rule. This is an assumption of things not seen, and things we yet can’t measure or estimate.
Again what is time? Causality requires actions in a timeline. There’s no cause-and-effect without the time factor. Time as we know it is relative and not absolute. Time is just a measurement in arbitrary divisions of events. For instance relativity would make it that if we were present at the first second of the Big Bang, and we could travel with one of the photons that got emitted at the first Planck’s Time Event, we would have traveled to the edge of the observable universe, but still at this moment think that the Big Bang just happened a moment ago.
With all the strange paradoxes of time and space, how can we be so certain about the causality at a point of time and space we can’t look beyond? Time didn’t start until the first quanta of time at the Big Bang. We really can’t say what kind of event is required, since the word “event” or “cause” or “moving” are terms dependent on time this time. How can something be the “mover” in a time that doesn’t yet exist? And then if God is of “another” timeline, then he must be temporal in his own timeline and he would fall into the same contingency problems as we have with the universe.
Maybe the first event, or first cause, was a quantum tunneling, and we can all pray to and thank this “First Quark” that caused our existence.
Let us talk about the Prime Mover a little more. It is assumed that all motion has to have a root cause, like your argument of the infinite number series have to have a beginning at zero. First of all the infinite series can be viewed in other ways than just “starting at zero”. It could just as well start at the negative infinite. I don’t want to go into mathematical proof of infinites, infinite sets and hyper-sets, because then we for sure end up discussing paradoxes like Cantor’s Paradox and Russell’s Paradox. Just because the parts are contingent, it doesn’t mean the whole is contingent. For instance you can use operators like add, subtract, multiply on numbers, but you can’t use it on the infinite set of numbers (at least they don’t yield the same results). Many times working with infinite sets are just as convoluted as working with Nil or divide by zero, and you can’t draw conclusions because you have a curious result. Some things you’re just not supposed to do in math, like divide by zero. Once I brought up “mathematical” evidence that 1 is not equal 1 on this forum, and based on the problem of transforming infinite regressions into integers:
1) 3/3 = 1
2) 3/3 = 3 x 1/3
3) 3/3 = 3 x 0.333…
4) 3/3 = 0.999…
5) 1 = 0.999…
With the math put aside, these are some other problems with the Prime Mover. First of all, does this prime mover have a motion to begin with? If not, then who and what moved God to become the first mover? If we say God moved himself, we only create a self-referencing regression. It’s a recursive formula that makes God unable to act and never moves, or God was eternally moving and no “first motion” really exists.
Aquinas’ arguments are based on the assumption that God is the unique uncaused cause
, only because emotionally one have to assume that everything in the Universe is contingent, while God is necessary. But this has been pointed out by logicians to be a fallacy of composition, to infer that since all parts of things have a certain property, the whole thing has the same property. In other words all things in the universe are contingent, but does it necessitate that the Universe as a whole is contingent? A house is built by bricks, but does the house follow the same rules as bricks?
Regarding the arguments that the Universe could not have existed eternally (for instance Hilbert’s Hotel paradox is commonly used here), we have a problem if God created the Universe ex nihilo
. God would still require energy, his will power or strength to create the universe. This energy would be part of God, from eternal “time”, and the universe would in a sense still have existed eternally, yet only in a different form. And we’ll end up with an eternal universe again, but now in a metaphysical form. We can also from the “proofs” that actual infinites can not exist, deduce that God can not be an actual infinite. In other words, God could be actual but not infinite, or God could be infinite but not actual, but “he” could not simultaneous be both.
Just for fun, let’s modify the Cosmological Argument just a little:
P1) everything that exists has a cause
P2) God had no cause
C) God does not exists, because if he did he would have to have a cause
Even if the Cosmological Argument was true, by definition God would have to be non-temporal and metaphysical and completely disconnected from our Universe to be the cause that is un-caused, and hence he/she/it would be of no importance to us.
In conclusion I say that if God can be the unique unmoved mover
, or uncaused causer
, then the Universe could be so too. And if God could cause something it would require that he was temporal, and he would become a part of the same requirements of causation and he would require a first cause
ad infinitum. Furthermore whatever we call this first cause
, and whatever it is defined, we can’t give it attributes like intelligence, or “the source of morality” or having traits like “demanding obedience from humans” or “being just”, the real first cause
would be a “just is” and nothing more. To give this “robot” or “automation” the name God is a fallacy of equivocation, and to give it emotional needs is an unnecessary step. It’s not logically conclusive that “first cause” equals “intelligence” and then equals “God”, or that any “God” of this kind even could communicate or participate in the events in our Universe. Specific Replies to your Answers
Above I wrote generic answers to the arguments, and here I’ll get into the more specific comments to your posts. Question 1 – What is God?
I liked your answer, and have no comments about your definition.Question 2 – What is the Purpose of God?
I do have some comments to make here. If indeed there was a creator, based on the arguments you later are giving, there is nothing in the philosophical arguments that supports that God not only is the First Cause but also the Maintainer of all the subsequent causes. The idea of a First Cause is that it only affects the beginning and not the continuation, and science clearly is finding how all things are tied together as machinery, without any supernatural strings attached; unless we would call superstrings supernatural.
And I would not agree on your second point “foster us by providing all the necessities of life” either. We know the natural forces that life is dependent upon, and there’s nothing evidentiary support to claim a deity is providing us with food, health or other necessities of life
. And of course this goes for number three too, there’s nothing to confirm that God would be guiding us how to live our lives, since we see religious people do evil things just as much as anyone else. If God truly were guiding people’s lives to act good, then we would see statistical support for it, but we don’t.
The last argument you gave, that “God’s purpose is to give us reason to our own existence” is an assumption, and not quite clear either. It sounds like he exists for the purpose so we have something to pray to and live in fear off. What is God’s own reason to why he wants to be our God? Is it to demand obedience (like I suppose the Islamic faith is based upon) it shows a weakness in God. God is perfect, yet he demands something from the same things he created. He could have created it the way he wanted it from start, instead of making the world faulty and create temptations and evil, only for the purpose to see how many “gets” it. It sounds more like a huge rate-maze where God is the crazy scientist experimenting on us to see how far he can go before we realize that he does not have our best interests in mind.
If God’s ultimate goal for my existence in this world is to act good here and then go to Heaven, why doesn’t he let the angel Gabriel (I think it was) give a revelation to each person, instead of letting the majority of people in the world go to Hell? That is an important question, because he could supposedly do anything, but he doesn’t. I keep on bringing up this thing in other discussions that God is a very bad investor. His Return-of-Investment is extremely low, and he would not be hired as a money manager for my investments. Considered how a only a handful of people will go to Heaven, while a truckload of people will go to Hell. What a waste of human lives!Question 3 – Does this God exists?
Well, I’ve dealt with most of it when it comes to cause and effect earlier in the document, and the arguments you gave are philosophical arguments for a Deistic God, but not really is a full proof for the God that you described under Question 1 and 2.
Your answer is interesting though because you bring up a new insight into the cause argument, and that is that God is also supposedly the “final” cause. Interesting, and I do think I could make an argument for it based on quantum mechanics, but I save that for another occasion. You do say however: “we are compelled to acknowledge that it must terminate with some ultimate cause” which I can not agree to. There is no reason to believe that there has to be an ending to our world or that infinite does not exist, since God must be infinite by definition. It’s just making the argument “the universe can’t be eternal, but God can be eternal.” And it begs the question to why this would be “compelling to acknowledge”.
Another comment you make: “One may ask that if this [is] the case, then what is the cause of God? Well, asking this question would be illogical and would nullify the very meaning of First or Ultimate cause.” There’s nothing illogical to ask the question what caused God, nothing more illogical than to ask what caused the Universe. We can ask the question, and the only reason you argue that it would nullify the meaning of the First Cause, is because you have accepted the First Cause argument before you asked the question.
You also state the Proof argument as follows:
a. Every created thing has a cause
b. Every effect is the indication of a former cause.
c. All causes finally indicate a single cause
d. This ultimate single cause is the act of God.
I would say that you’re making some mistakes here. Already when you state “every created thing” you already assuming that things are created, and not formed by natural process, and you’re setting up the argument in the attempt to reach the conclusion. It needs to say “every thing” or “every thing that exists”. Because I could claim that the Universe is not created, and hence the Universe does not need a cause. If you also look at the last premise you claim that the “ultimate single cause” is an “act”. To “act” is an action; it is “do to something”. Did God think about this action before he did it? If he did, if he has intelligence, and he made up his mind before he moved his hand to act, then the act was an effect of God’s thought. This means that this act was an effect of a deliberate decision which would be the real cause. But then again these decisions must have come from some contemplation and planning, so the decision was an effect from the planning God made, which would be the cause. And if we go even further, God must have made up his mind to start this planning, which would have been the ultimate cause. What did he do before this point? Played golf? Was he moving at all? Was he forcing himself to not be causing anything, since the first cause must have been when he created the Universe? You see, the first cause argument will always lead to infinite regressions just because we try to explain the things we can’t understand. If God was in motion for eternity, then eternal motion exists, and we could find natural eternal motions that don’t require a “supernatural intelligence” to explain.
And you made this argument: Speaking in scientific terms, we know that our whole phenomenal Universe is an effect of a cause. The creation of Erath is the effect of Sun, the cause of Sun is the effect of Galaxies, the cause of Galaxies is the effect of Nebulae, the cause of Nebulae is the effect of Big Bang, the cause of Big Bang is the effect of a single Nebula and the cause of single Nebula is the effect of act of a Unified force (i.e. God). Now, the cause of this Unified force is the effect of this Unified force itself. Logically and scientifically, this Unified force must be exempted from this chain of causes and effects otherwise we can not term it as a unified force.
First of all the quantum mechanics isn’t straight forward Cause and Effect. We have the uncertainty principles and the probabilities of particles location and inertia. For instance the probability states that particles can exist in two places through a waveform function, and the uncertainty states that we can’t know the location and inertia at the same time for a particle. Here’s a little example I heard from a scientist, now granted I’m not a scientist, so I hope I do him justice by telling the story in my own words and that I remember it correctly:Let us try to defy the uncertainty principle by boxing in a particle (electron) in a little box. We will shrink the box until the particle is in one state, not moving at all. We will then know where it is, and also its inertia. Now we start with a big box, and we slowly shrink it. Now the probability states that this electron exists inside the box and outside the box simultaneous, and while we’re shrinking the box the probability will increase for the particle to exist outside the box and decrease for it to exist inside the box. At the point when the box has completely locked in the particle, the particle does not exist in the box anymore, but is outside, and the uncertainty principle has not been broken. This effect is called quantum tunneling, and it does not follow classic effects.
And I also find it amusing that you bring in the GUT into this, because the GUT is supposedly, according to your argument, a natural phenomenon without the cause-and-effect, i.e. GUT is self causing just like GOD! If GUT is without cause, then God did not cause it, then GUT is self-causing without God. This means that GUT would be GOD, but only with the difference that GUT would be mathematical and predictable according to natural laws, and completely non-sentient. Man assumed that the digit Zero (0) is the first-digit in mathematics, keeping aside the decimal system, on the base of this first digit, man started to build corresponding digits ranging from 1 to 9. The extension of digits after 9 is only the set-system we can not find any other digit in our whole mathematics, save 0 to 9. We were able to invent or discover this number system because, we agreed on a first-digit. If we would have started to argument over the existence of (Zero), which basically means "nothing", then we would not have discovered such a system and thus no scientific discovery or invention could have been possible.
I’d say you stretch it a little too far. We can build number systems on any base, and the most common used number system today is not 10 digits, but the base of 2, the digital system. I’m not sure what you’re arguing here though; is it the argument that we should keep an open and agnostic mind and not jump to conclusions? Yes that I can agree to. That’s why we can’t jump to the conclusion that the Universe can’t also be self-caused.
Talking about different alternative solutions to the universe, there’s a theory called Brane Theory. This one states that there are an infinite number of universes and each universe is separated by a “Brane” (from the word membrane). The Brane contains infinite amount of energy. When two universes collide, energy from the Brane would poor into the universe. (I hope I described it fairly correct). This collision would be an effect of wave functions in the space/time of the universes. (I think) Now if this theory is correct, then we have the explanation to the Big bang and the early inflation of the universe, without the problem of a first cause.
In your second proof you say: “Well, logically, nothing is happened for nothing. Therefore, everything must be done for some purpose.” This I can not agree upon. It’s a perfect example of how words intertwine and change meanings while we’re playing with them. The word “purpose” is a word of intent. It directly has the meaning of that someone have the intent of doing something. And you say that nothing is happening for nothing and that’s why there must be intent. I see a rock falling down a mountain because of gravity and not because of intentional or purposeful decisions. The majority of events in the universe follows mechanical, physical laws, and not intent. But claiming “purpose” you paint the world in the colors of your own mind. You see what you want to see, not what really is there. There’s no purpose in people’s pain and suffering, or earthquakes that take the homes and families from decent and innocent people. You can claim there’s purpose to it, but there’s nothing to support that claim. Sorry, I can’t say I see a purpose in this.
You talked about the observer’s paradox, which is very interesting, because I see it as it making us the gods instead of God. The probabilities of the waveform will not collapse to one point until we observe them, the past as a complete timeline isn’t established observed. That makes us the “creators”.
In your third argument, you bring up the Kalam Argument, which is quite similar to the Cosmological Argument. To argue that “everything must have beginning” is pretty much bringing it back to “everything must have a first cause”. And the logical structure of the argument is solid, but the whole argument as such doesn’t prove God. And you then bring in the Intelligent Design, and I made some arguments in the earlier section about this. You think the world is “intelligently designed” because you are intelligent and you know how to design things. You anthropomorphize the universe. You judge what you see based on what you are. I don’t see the “intelligence” in the design of the universe; the Universe just “is” and nothing else. So if I don’t see the intelligence or design in it, then my emotional argument of not seeing it should be just as valid as yours. You feel like it looks designed, and I don’t.
When it comes to the Fine-Tuned argument – The Anthropic Principle - of course we exist in a Universe where the exact parameters exist for us to exist. The logical conclusion is that if it didn’t, then we wouldn’t exist or be here to argue about it. Does this mean there are no other combinations of parameters for a universe? Are we really certain that it is so? If it was possible to have a universe where all the basic laws were a bit different, but still in balance to each other, would that universe eventually have a different kind of creatures that would contemplate existence and eventually come up with the Fine-Tuned Universe argument? They most likely would! So how do we know that these creatures in that complete different tuned universe don’t exist? The simple answer is: We don’t! So to bring up intelligent design, is nothing more than to bring up what we feel about things. The argument is based on the assumption that we are unique and alone.
If God exists, and Heaven exists, is Heaven in a different tuned universe or in the same kind of tuned universe? If it is in the same kind it means you can approve there could be other universes like our own, and we’re not alone, and if it is tuned different, then we can agree that there’s not just one possible “design”.
Also notice to that your arguments about design contains words as “Our Universe appears
to have an intelligent design”, or “if
chance is not valid”, and other comments, they all point to an uncertainty in your argument. They don’t say “it is clear from the evidence”, but rather “this is how I feel about it.” And that’s okay, but it’s not a proof. So if you are using words that hint uncertainty of your claims, then your claims are not proofs.
This quote of yours: The concept of taskhir in the Qur'an refers to the easily observable fact that nature, in both its cosmic and biospheric dimensions, has been constrained by Allah to render service and benefit unto humankind. In modern cosmological terms, taskhir refers to the high degree of fine-tuning of the design-parameters of the universe for the support of life on earth, and ultimately, conscious and intelligent human life. Through taskhir, the perfection of Allah's wisdom (hikmah) is manifested in the phenomenal world, and His Grace (fadl) realized for humanity. The service rendered to mankind by the Divine subjugation of nature is ultimately not only physical and material in nature, but also intellectual, moral and metaphysical in its significance: that humanity would be brought to recognize, acknowledge and glorify their Creator, and thus to realize fully the enduring transcendent meaning of their fleeting, phenomenal life on earth. Axiologically, this means that Islamic science is less utilitarian than intellecto-moral, and hence, the "outer" utilitarian dimension of science is to be subsumed under, and guided by, its "inner" intellecto-moral dimension, and not vice-versa.
It is beautiful, but there is no evidence to its claims.Response to the second set of questions Now, if we take your experiment as a successful one then it is very well explained that in this experiment a shadow-first cause (the scientists) is required and the first cause should be having the potential to create all the subsequent causes and effects to produce such a Universe. But, regretfully, we can not term this group of scientists as a first cause themselve, because they must have been caused by some other cause, therefore if we agree on a single all powerful alien scientist , then to this scientist we can use the term first cause. For any entity to be considered as a first cause its uniqueness and singularity is imperative.I can say that we might be the product (not byproduct) of some alien's experiment but then we have to find that how that group of aliens came into being and thus again an infinite chain will be started therefore; when we talk about God, we actually talk about the Ultimate final and the very first cause of all the subsequent causes and effects.
You see this is the root of the problem, you assume there must be an Ultimate Primary and Final Cause, and with that assumption any argument goes. And you also assume that this First Cause must have created our Universe first of everything, and you assume this First Cause can not have created a robot that created our universe.
If we are the product of such an experiment like the Universe 2.0, we can not claim our specific universe be the product of the first cause you are talking about, but the super-universe that created us, or maybe the universe before that. There is no guarantee that we are the “first caused” universe by such a being called “first mover”. Can you prove that we are for a fact Universe 1.0 by a God? Or is there a chance we could be the 10th, or 20th, or 10,000th universe? The problem is that you can’t say which one in order we are, even if there would be a First Mover somewhere down the line of universes. And since you can’t really know this, then you can’t even be sure if there is an infinite regression or not, because in the end, whatever or whoever this First Mover is, he/she/it have to be eternal and infinite. We will always ask “what is behind the next corner?” Ans: Well, If you see a very beautiful masterpiece of diamond, will you not consider that as a symbol of beauty? Hopefully, every human being would but, not every living-being and even in some cases some human beings would also not consider it a beautiful object. Therefore, Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Similarly, the cause & effect phenomenon is a proven fact but to term an effect as a purpose, it is the interpretation of the conscious-observer. However, this interpretation is itself stands as a fact for those who possess more wisdom and knowledge.
It’s true that we can contemplate and consider beauty in the world, but I don’t see any reason to believe that it has to have a source of a higher deity. It’s just a fact that we do see beauty, but it’s not a fact that this ability has to be programmed or designed in us by an external force. A counter argument would be that I would listen to a particular kind of music, and I would like it a lot, while another person would listen to same music and hate it. Some of our “beauty sensors” are genetic, but much of it is trained or culturally influenced. For instance classical music is an acquired taste. In this example, we can easily find that effect (experimentation) was recognised by all three observers but the true meaning of that effect was only recognised by the one who had the level of specific-understanding. Similarly, all the created beings are involved in the fullfilment of this cause and effect phenomenon but only the human being, being an intelligent and witty creature, is able to recognise the meaning of these effects and our current age of reasoning has made us able to gain that specific-understanding to find a hidden purpose in the chain of causes and effects. Therefore, we can say that purpose is indeed a fact but for those who deliberate.
This argument makes us gods. We have the ability, that is experienced and this is factual, but the source or how we have these abilities can’t be proven to be supernatural, but we do see that medicine and surgical measures can have an effect on people’s abilities to do these things. Frontal lobe injuries can make people angry and violent. Drugs can make people happy or sad. It is all in the brain. Ans: Well, your first assumption that God has to be a more complex being is actually not correct.
It is an assumption made from the argument that the Universe is complex and intelligently designed. If the Universe requires intelligence to exist, then this intelligence must be of a higher intelligence than all human beings all together, and it must be a brain larger than the universe, so my argument is that it is a requirement that God’s brain is more complex in construct than the Universe. If the Intelligent Design argument is true, then God must be intelligent enough to create a Universe that not even we can understand or encompass. So God must be more complex, it’s just logically and naturally follows the Design Argument.
If we compare the Watchmaker allegory to intelligence for a moment we can see some problems with the Design Argument. First of all the allegory states that we can deduce from experience that a watch we find on the beach must have been designed. Now if we look at intelligence, our experience tells us that animals are not intelligent, rocks are not intelligent, and computers do not measure up to human intelligence, and also that intelligence is always dependent on a brain. No one have seen or experienced intelligence outside the brain. Intelligence must have a brain, that is what we have seen through science and biology, and if the brain gets injured, the intelligence is affected. Now this leads, the same way as the Watchmakers argument, to the conclusion that God can not have a disembodied, non-temporal or non-corporeal intelligence. God must have a brain, and of such a size and complexity that it can figure out the construct of the universe. Now with the Designer Argument in mind, God’s complex brain can not just exist; it must have been created by a Super-God.
If we go with your answer that God is simpler than the Universe, then God is a lesser entity than the Universe, and there’s no reason to assume God to be sentient and no need contemplate his/hers importance in our lives. complex thing can not breed a more complex thing rather, it would breed chaotic things, undesigned. Simplicity breeds complexity
This is a contradiction to the Designer Argument, because the Argument is that everything is so complex and advanced that someone/something must have thought about it and figured out how it works and then designed it accordingly. This requires a planning, research, construction, testing etc. Since I’m in the software business, I know what kind of creativity and skills are required for doing designs. It’s is not a process of magically making things work. It’s a process of consciously building step by step. Again, the Designer Argument is an argument of the Complex God, not the Simple God.
But since you argue that simplicity would be the precursor to complexity, and God is this simple thing, then I could easily call define God as Quantum Mechanics, or Super-Strings. Just like you’re stating about the simplicity in quarks etc, this is very true. Our complex world is built upon simple and small components, and that is the whole formula of existence. Quarks and Super-strings do not have emotions, thoughts, intelligence or a requirement that we have to follow some arbitrary moral laws written in a book by a one single person some hundreds or thousands years ago. God is only a concept of the “whole existence” and nothing else. God is nothing more than the concept of a non-personal, non-thinking, non-cognitive and non-sentient “it”.
The God concept is quite similar to how we can mathematically specify to infinite precision what a circle is; a perfect circle. But in actuality no one can make one true perfect circle. The perfect circle only exists in our minds as a concept, but doesn’t exist in actuality. That is what God is. God is a concept of perfection that can not be an actuality.Conclusion
These Theological Arguments are good, compelling and interesting, but they don’t convince someone like me into conversion. They are admittedly among the best attempts to prove God’s existence, but they are not without problems or paradoxes. They’re based on logic, but logic that is applied to things we don’t fully understand yet and on certain unproven presuppositions. Theologians use the label God to put on anything that we haven’t explained or fully understood yet. It’s just another attempt to the “God of the gaps” argument.
And yet, in all this I’m not really trying to disprove the theological arguments to the level to say they are completely without merit, but only prove they are not strong enough to be a conclusive evidence for a divine being. My responses are more of an honest attempt to look at the arguments vis-à-vis counter arguments and deduce that we truly don’t know, instead of assuming one side of the argument to be better than the other.
This document is far from complete and probably not fully comprehensible, and if opportunity is given in the future I might complement with the rest of my arguments, and make it a generic document that can be used in similar debates. And hopefully remove some of the repetitions I made.Further Reading
The Cosmological Argument, and the Kalam Argumenthttp://en.wikipedia...._and_objectionshttp://www.infidels....r/kalamity.htmlhttp://www.bigissueg...mological.shtmlhttp://plato.stanfor...gical-argument/
The (Intelligent) Design Argumenthttp://www.bigissueg...nstdesign.shtmlhttp://plato.stanfor...ical-arguments/