If God were immaterial, God therefore would not exist.
The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.
Winner & statistics
After 5 votes and with 23 points ahead, the winner is...
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Round 1: Opening Arguments.
Round 2: Rebuttals.
Round 3: Rejoinders.
Round 4: (Double) Rejoinders.
Round 5: Closing Arguments.
Definition of exist: to be (Cambridge Dictionary.)
Thank you to my opponent for accepting the challenge. By accepting the challenge as the proponent of the proposition, his position is necessarily materialist. In this debate, I will demonstrate the absurdity of restricting existence to a materialist perspective, thereby rebutting the notion that God must necessarily be material to exist.
My argument is rather simple: if we were to accept the proposition, "If God were immaterial, God therefore would not exist," applying this logic to all that which we suppose is immaterial would render the same conclusion. So for example, numbers, which are immaterial, because they do not consist of matter would not exist when extending the logic of the proposition in this context. The manner in which we relate these numbers, arithmetic, would also not exist when operating on the premise, material = existent.
What about shapes? Shapes do not consist of matter; and if shapes don't consist of matter, they are not material; therefore, operating on the logic of the proposition, shapes do not exist. So if shapes wouldn't exist, and numbers wouldn't exist, what parts of mathematics would exist? Would mathematics even exist at all? Would the laws of physics which are informed by mathematical models exist?
Finally, neither words nor their meaning consist of matter. Therefore, these very words I'm typing would not exist. Sure, the pixels on your computer screen make them visible to you, but the meaning and communication would not exist. It is for these reasons that we must consider restricting existence to a materialist perspective to be categorically absurd. Thus, the statement God must be material to exist (the inverse of the proposition) is absurd, too.
Greetings! Welcome to another exciting debate. As always thank you to my opponent for the challenge. I fear there has been a misunderstanding in the pro con relationship. I accepted this debate because I believed I would be arguing for the existence of God, in opposition to the resolution, not the other way around.
However, in order to give my opponent a good debate, I will play Dawkins advocate and give my best shot at being an atheist. Please do not refer to me as dust and ashes in this debate, but rather, my atheist alter ego, gene and mutation.
Now on to my argument.
As the great Carl Sagan once said, the universe is all there is, was, and ever will be. Surely this is a basic fact of science. As a species, our knowledge base operates on the engine of science. On the engine of experimentation, and observable results. We know what we know by observing the universe around us. All of the phenomenon and processes around us all eventually come down to matter acting on matter.
1. Everything in the known universe has been observed to come down to particles or energy
The fact is, we have never observed or tested anything that superseded nature. We just haven't.
2. Since this is the case, if we posit a God who is immaterial, what we are positing is someone who does not fit into our model of existence, which is based on scientific realities. In other words, immaterial realities do not exist.
I hope my opponent will consider these basic scientific facts...in my next round I will reply to my opponent arguments regarding shapes and math.
Thank you all!
(Dear God please forgive me of these blasphemies)
I would like my opponent to please continue. Forfeit disregarded
"Greetings! Welcome to another exciting debate. As always thank you to my opponent for the challenge. I fear there has been a misunderstanding in the pro con relationship. I accepted this debate because I believed I would be arguing for the existence of God, in opposition to the resolution, not the other way around."
It's unfortunate that you were confused by the proposition, but the proposition necessarily suggests a materialist position for the one who supports it. Even if we were to convert the proposition to its inverse, "If God were material, God therefore would exist," accepting the position of pro would still necessarily suggest the same.
"I will play Dawkins advocate..."
Nice play on words.
"As the great Carl Sagan once said, the universe is all there is, was, and ever will be. Surely this is a basic fact of science. As a species, our knowledge base operates on the engine of science. On the engine of experimentation, and observable results. We know what we know by observing the universe around us."
And what are these basic facts of science without the abstracts on which they communicate this universe, i.e. language and mathematics?
All of the phenomenon and processes around us all eventually come down to matter acting on matter."
Including the ideas you've just conveyed to me about the phenomenon and processes around us?
Everything in the known universe has been observed to come down to particles or energy
The fact is, we have never observed or tested anything that superseded nature.
Tests on or about nature are subject to nature. If you want to test for that which "supersedes" nature, you must expand the parameters of the test to include for that which "supersedes" nature. (I'm scare quoting "supersede" because the resolution doesn't necessarily conclude mutual exclusivity.)
"if we posit a God who is immaterial, what we are positing is someone who does not fit into our model of existence, which is based on scientific realities."
And what of the definition of exist I stipulated in the very beginning which serves as our model for existence?
"I hope my opponent will consider these basic scientific facts..."
I do consider basic scientific facts. I do not consider them however necessarily material. If anything, they are necessarily abstract because of the mathematics and essentially abstract notions which premise their conception.
Greetings. As always, thank you to my opponent for his response. To reiterate, I am playing the atheist part, and I feel quite naughty I must say. Nevertheless, I will now rebut my opponent's first statement.
My opponent has appealed to the idea of mathematics and shapes as evidence for the immaterial. What my opponent has done though is added properties to things which have no inherent properties. Rather, are merely tools of language.
SHAPES: Material or abstract?
My opponent has mentioned shapes and then asked me to explain them. It's quite simple, shapes are not some nebulous immaterial concept. They are simply descriptions of physical construct. If I have a ball, the way I describe that ball through human language is by calling it a "sphere". The word sphere is either written or spoken, and those words or sounds are processed by the brain to make the hearer or reader know I am referring to a something with the physical nature of a ball.
The same applies to numbers. If I have "two" apples, it means I have an apple, and another apple. The word two is merely a descriptor of a physical state of being. In this case apple A and apple B. This applies across the board to all mathematics and shapes.
So, there is no need to change the properties of physical descriptions we have created in our language, into some non material function of reality. Again, my contention that matter is all there is still stands.
Thank you all.
I concede. I haven't had the time I would like to give this debate the attention it deserves. If you're still interested, I may challenge you directly to this debate again. Until then.
Yes, feel to challenge me directly. Of course I'm not actually a materialist, but it's been fun
I think you're on the right track, I don't know if I would have used shapes as evidence for the immaterial. Numbers can work. Where can I find "twelveness" in nature? Those analogies have their limits though. If I was trying to disprove materialism I might have gone with something like logic. The concept of logic by necessity must be immaterial for it to function at all. We could discuss that more if you'd like. Or I would bring up moral truths as examples of immaterial realities, that's always fun. Can altruism be weighed? Can you look at justice with a microscope...where in nature is the truth that you shouldn't murder people? Can that truth be experienced with the five senses? Are those truths made of particles? You get the idea. Just some more ammunition for future debates with real materialists.
My apologies for my forfeit. I grossly overestimated the time I had available to respond. It's up to you: we can end the debate here, and allow my forfeit to determine the outcome, or we can pick up where we left off in Round 3. Either decision is fine.
Lol nice alter ego dude
'semantic realm' of reality is something I came up with in my anti-materialism debate. I'm impressed to see that this (and not consciousness) is how you defeated it.