A thought

Author: Tejretics ,

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  • Tejretics
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    Staying out of the Religion forum.

    On this site’s “precursor” of sorts, Debate.org, I’ve debated God’s existence a ridiculous number of times, from both sides. Eventually, the topic became relatively uninteresting and I stopped.

    I’m an atheist, but I think New Atheism is mostly dumb, there’s a good chance religion is a net positive for society, quasi-religions are inevitable anyway, and most common arguments against God’s existence (e.g., the omnipotence paradox, the problem of evil, the second order problem of evil, the contradiction between omniscience and free will, some of the more apparently sophisticated arguments of people like the late Michael Martin and the late Victor Stenger) fail (though the same is true of most common arguments for God’s existence, e.g., the kalam cosmological argument, the various versions of “ontological arguments,” the teleological argument and its variants, the Leibnizian cosmological argument, the argument from religious experience, and so on). 

    I’ve come to think, however, that possibly the strongest argument against God’s existence—of course, it is very much rebut-able, and it is fairly straightforward to have a long debate about it—is prima facie unlikelihood. This isn’t quite the same as Occam’s razor or Russell’s teapot or whatever—it’s not about burdens of proof per se. It’s just that, other things equal, it seems bizarre that the universe is created and/or ruled by an interventionist humanlike giant. And we should have a strong prior against that. So if we’re considering God’s existence from a Bayesian perspective, where H is the hypothesis that God exists and is any evidence in favor of God, P(H) is low, so P(e | H) would have to be pretty high and P(e | ~H) would have to be pretty low for an argument in favor of God’s existence to not work.

    (I am aware of other relatively strong arguments against God’s existence – for example, that God’s existence is possibly incompatible with B theories of time, which special relatively points in the direction of; that minds are processes that could require time as a prerequisite; that God is an efficient cause and not a simultaneous one, and that time is a prerequisite for that, so efficient causation of the universe of any kind is incoherent; various versions “reverse modal ontological arguments,” e.g., God being necessarily existent entails that the universe exists necessarily, which either it doesn’t or it does while contradicting God’s existence; some of the more abstract work in the philosophical literature about God’s spatial location. I nonetheless think the basic Bayesian argument might be stronger.)

    I probably won’t respond to anything on this thread, but in case you’re interested in discussing with others. This also isn’t a strong opinion or one I’ve thought about too deeply. 
  • TheRealNihilist
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    --> @Tejretics
    I’m an atheist, but I think New Atheism is mostly dumb
    Truuuuuu
    there’s a good chance religion is a net positive for society
    Depends on how you define it.
    (e.g., the omnipotence paradox, the problem of evil, the second order problem of evil, the contradiction between omniscience and free will, some of the more apparently sophisticated arguments of people like the late Michael Martin and the late Victor Stenger) fail
    Explain the evil one.
    (though the same is true of most common arguments for God’s existence, e.g., the kalam cosmological argument, the various versions of “ontological arguments,” the teleological argument and its variants, the Leibnizian cosmological argument, the argument from religious experience, and so on). 
    I am guessing this is a both sides meme.
    I probably won’t respond to anything on this thread, but in case you’re interested in discussing with others. This also isn’t a strong opinion or one I’ve thought about too deeply. 
    Okay.
  • Tejretics
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    Explain the evil one.
    The first order problem of evil says that the existence of an omnibenevolent and omnipotent God (say G) is mutually incompatible with the existence of suffering in the world (say S). Since is true, it follows that is false. In set form (if P(x) is the probability of x):

    P1) P(∩ S) = 0
    P2) P(S) = 1
    C) Therefore, P(G) = 0

    The second order problem of evil says that God’s existence is mutually incompatible with the existence of “gratuitous puzzlement.” Since the problem of evil is a form of “gratuitous puzzlement” (i.e., needless confusion about God’s own existence), and it exists, God wouldn’t exist. (Sounds bizarre, I know, I dunno what academic philosophy looks like.) 

    The nth order problem of evil says that the (n – 1)th order problem of evil poses gratuitous puzzlement, which means God doesn’t exist. 
  • TheRealNihilist
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    Please simple words.

    Are you saying the argument doesn't fail?
  • Tejretics
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    Are you saying the argument doesn't fail?
    I don’t understand the question.

    I don’t agree with any of the arguments I explained above, to be clear.
  • TheRealNihilist
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    P1) P(∩ S) = 0
    P2) P(S) = 1
    C) Therefore, P(G) = 0
    I have never seen shapes likes those. Can you put this into words?

    What is “gratuitous puzzlement.”?
  • Tejretics
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    I have never seen shapes likes those. Can you put this into words?
    Oops, sorry.

    P1) The probability that both and are true is 0 (or, in some versions of the argument, less than 0.5). 
    P2) The probability that is true is 1 (or, in some versions of the argument, greater than 0.5).
    C) Thus, the probability that is true is 0 (or, in some versions of the argument, less than 0.5). 

    is the statement that “God exists and is omnipotent and omnibenevolent” and is the statement that “suffering exists in the world.”

    Basically, if God is all-powerful and all-caring, he wouldn’t have created a world with suffering in it. Since we know suffering exists, that means God probably doesn’t exist. 

    What is “gratuitous puzzlement”?
    Needless confusion (as I noted above).
  • TheRealNihilist
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    Isn't this implying God is good?

    Is that the problem with the argument? You did disagree with the first paragraph

    Thank you for simplifying it. 
  • Tejretics
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    Isn't this implying God is good?
    The argument is that God cannot be simultaneously omnibenevolent and omnipotent. So it doesn’t “imply” it, it’s from the definition of God this argument uses.

    The argument has many problems, in my view, and I’d recommend searching for those problems on Google Scholar instead of asking me, since my explanations are probably pretty bad. 

  • TheRealNihilist
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    The argument is that God cannot be simultaneously omnibenevolent and omnipotent. So it doesn’t “imply” it, it’s from the definition of God this argument uses.
    Okay. Thought you were talking about a different omni.
    The argument has many problems, in my view, and I’d recommend searching for those problems on Google Scholar instead of asking me, since my explanations are probably pretty bad. 
    Any links you have in mind?
  • ethang5
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    I’m an atheist, but I think New Atheism is mostly dumb,...
    What is the difference between what you believe, and new atheism, that makes new atheism dumb and your belief not?
  • zedvictor4
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    All data is essentially the same.

    it's just how we choose to order data that supposedly makes us different.

    Theism and Atheism and New Atheism are all essentially the same. 

    It's all  just down the addition of a few extra  A's and new's etc. 

    A load of fuss about nothing really.

    Nonetheless, entertaining.
  • ethang5
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    I suspect that Tejretics, if he responds, may have a more rational answer.
  • Tejretics
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    What is the difference between what you believe, and new atheism, that makes new atheism dumb and your belief not?
    My problem with New Atheism isn’t the atheism. Rather, it’s three-fold: (1) The outright dismissal of people who derive meaning from their religious beliefs as irrational and stupid. This lack of empathy (combined with a lack of epistemic modesty) really gets me. (2) The kinds of arguments they make against God’s existence being very weak, making their dismissal of faith seem even more acutely bad. (3) The claim that we should attempt to somehow eradicate religion from society. I do not think religion does more harm than good, though it’s certainly possible, and I think it is near-impossible to eradicate religious belief in some form—evidenced by the fact that, at its peak, New Atheism became a sort of quasi-religion (and in its quasi-religious practices, created environments exclusionary to both other kinds of important discussion about science and philosophy and to particular groups of people, such as women). 

  • ethang5
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    That was a very rational answer with which I agree. Thanks.
  • PGA2.0
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    I’ve come to think, however, that possibly the strongest argument against God’s existence—of course, it is very much rebut-able, and it is fairly straightforward to have a long debate about it—is prima facie unlikelihood.
    I, contrarily, think one of the best arguments for God is the unlikelihood of the universe without God, a necessary Being.

    There would be no intent. How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability? One of the reasons science works is because we have confidence that things will work like they have in the past, thus predictability. If there is no mind or intention behind the universe why should we expect that to be the case? Why should we be able to find reasons for such a universe?

    If there is no ultimate mind behind the universe why should we look for meaning and why do we continue to find it? We can explain natural functions like gravity and thermodynamics with mathematical formulas. Mathematics is a product of minds. A tree or rock does not think, let alone think in terms of mathematical probabilities. We discover these principles, we do not invent them. They seem to ring true whether we exist or not. Without your particular mind of my mind, they would still be true. Yet they require mindfulness. So the meaning seems built into the universe. The anthropic principle seems like the best explanation. 

    2 + 2 = 4 means nothing to a tree or rock, yet it is a principle that can be nothing but what it is and is dependent on mindful beings thinking it yet it does not depend on any particular human mind for its existence. Thus, if you have two objects and add two more then you have four objects. Thus, 2 + 2 = 4 is an eternal truth that depends on mindful beings since it cannot be other than what it is unless you want to argue that it can be something other than 4 practically? Since it does not depend on any human mind and we discover these principles to make sense of our world and universe then God is a reasonable explanation. 

    Thus, to date, God is a more reasonable and likely explanation than chance happenstance.

    What about morality? How does relativism equal good? How can a relative, subjective, changing standard make sense of good? We see even in our cultures of Canada and the USA a changing view on what is good. We see what was once taboo, bad, and a moral outrage now embarrassed as good, acceptable, the moral norm. We see other cultures or societies or subgroups disagreeing with ours. That begs the question of what is actually good? Logically, how can two opposing views both be true and right at the same time and regarding the same issue when they contradict? And what is the identity of good in such cases? How can its identity be the opposite of what it is or the contrary depending on who thinks it? 

    Is it more reasonable to believe that life comes from non-life and what is the evidence other than a naturalistic or materialistic mind frame? how does this happen? We never witness life coming from non-life. Thus, we have to assume it.

    Why do we continue to find information and order that seems unlikely from chance happenstance? What kind of information would you expect to find from a random explosion? It would produce chaos.

    What we witness is mindfulness coming from other mindful beings. 
    We see meaning coming from the meaningful.
    We see intelligence coming from intelligent mindful beings.
    We see life coming from the living. 

    Thus, the chance happenstance universe continually fails the experiential test. You can think it but you can't live by it. It is inconsistent with daily living and what we witness.

    ***

    So I have not seen these questions adequately met by an atheistic worldview to date. Mostly they are ignored. I would be grateful for your explanation and a discussion on these and other issues since you are a thoughtful person, judging from pass encounters on DDO where I read your responses. 

    This isn’t quite the same as Occam’s razor or Russell’s teapot or whatever—it’s not about burdens of proof per se. It’s just that, other things equal, it seems bizarre that the universe is created and/or ruled by an interventionist humanlike giant. And we should have a strong prior against that.
    As put forth above, I think the opposite is true. It seems bazaar that a chance universe would produce meaning, mindfulness, information, sustainability,  and order. And it is not like God is created in the likeness of human beings but rather the opposite. That is, humanity is created in the image and likeness of God, not in a physical sense since God is Spirit, but in our mental capacity to think, reason, love, find purpose and meaning. 

    So if we’re considering God’s existence from a Bayesian perspective, where H is the hypothesis that God exists and is any evidence in favor of God, P(H) is low, so P(e | H) would have to be pretty high and P(e | ~H) would have to be pretty low for an argument in favor of God’s existence to not work.
    Again, we approach the problem of existence from two different mindsets or worldview. I would argue that yours is inconsistent with the way things are and how they got to be that way. 

    Not only this but if the Bible is what it claims to be then you would expect confirmations of what it says in regards to history and the sciences, not scientism, since the universe would be created by God's will and exists because of His providence and mercy and it is explained by God. Thus, you would have a fixed source for morality, meaning, purpose, truth, epistemology, etc. 

    (I am aware of other relatively strong arguments against God’s existence – for example, that God’s existence is possibly incompatible with B theories of time, which special relatively points in the direction of; that minds are processes that could require time as a prerequisite; that God is an efficient cause and not a simultaneous one, and that time is a prerequisite for that, so efficient causation of the universe of any kind is incoherent; various versions “reverse modal ontological arguments,” e.g., God being necessarily existent entails that the universe exists necessarily, which either it doesn’t or it does while contradicting God’s existence; some of the more abstract work in the philosophical literature about God’s spatial location. I nonetheless think the basic Bayesian argument might be stronger.)
    We humans live and exist and experience in the A-theory of time whereas God exists in the B-theory of time. We experience life in a physical manner where we begin to exist (a timeline) whereas God is a spiritual Being and since He is timeless He sees the physicality of time events before Him in the present. Past, present, and future are all the present to God in that He sees the whole of time in the present, now. Everything in the physical universe is laid bare before Him and since He created and put this universe into existence He understands it in all its aspects. We, as humans only see it in part (limited) and our experience is guided largely by the physicality of our universe and our existence. It has a beginning. God does not, thus timeless. God's existence is not physical although, in the living Word, the Son, He stepped into His creation and experienced the temporal. The Bible, at various times speaks of two worlds, two kingdoms, two realms (or the kingdom of God versus the kingdoms of the world) of which the realm of God is the greater and everlasting realm.     


    I probably won’t respond to anything on this thread, but in case you’re interested in discussing with others. This also isn’t a strong opinion or one I’ve thought about too deeply. 


    That is a shame. It is a peeve of mine when someone initiates a thread that I am interested in, make interesting comments, then step back from it and take little accountability for what they have said. I am glad to see that you have continued to answer questions and respond to comments, however. 
  • TheRealNihilist
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    There would be no intent. How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability? One of the reasons science works is because we have confidence that things will work like they have in the past, thus predictability. If there is no mind or intention behind the universe why should we expect that to be the case? Why should we be able to find reasons for such a universe?
    These are just questions.
    If there is no ultimate mind behind the universe why should we look for meaning and why do we continue to find it?
    Not an argument for God. Saying people find meaning has no link to God. If you happen to find a link to God.
    They seem to ring true whether we exist or not.
    There is absolutely no way to verify this to be true.

    The 2 + 2 = 4 paragraph is in essence a repeat of the last paragraph. 
    Thus, to date, God is a more reasonable and likely explanation than chance happenstance.
    Describe to me the contrary position as in the not God argument.

    If it wasn't clear I am not a fan of your questions. Instead of actually presenting an argument for your side you instead resort to condemning the other. Why not make a compelling argument instead of shifting the burden of proof?


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    --> @Tejretics
    PS. I was wondering whether you agree with the comments of one atheist on the philosophic thread that God has nothing to do with philosophy since you bring up the subject? 
  • PGA2.0
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    There would be no intent. How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability? One of the reasons science works is because we have confidence that things will work like they have in the past, thus predictability. If there is no mind or intention behind the universe why should we expect that to be the case? Why should we be able to find reasons for such a universe?
    These are just questions.
    They seek understanding.

    Not only questions but they are questions to an atheistic worldview. They seek to find out how from the atheist perspective, origins can be made sense of reasonably.

    Either the universe owns its existence to a mindful Being, beings, or it is a product of chance. So, what is the reason for each view and how logical and logically consistent is it?

    If there is no ultimate mind behind the universe why should we look for meaning and why do we continue to find it?
    Not an argument for God. Saying people find meaning has no link to God. If you happen to find a link to God.
    But we formulate mathematical equations that are not invented by us. We discover these meaningful, to us, PRINCIPLES. 

    Not only this but we continually seek meaning in what, by atheist standards, would be chance happenstance, an ultimately meaningless universe.

    We continue to live as if things matter. The majority of humanity, through existence, continue to seek out God or gods as the answer. Although that proves nothing conclusively in itself (an argument from popularity), it does bring to mind why we do this. We continually live as though things matter so inconsistent with chance happenstance.  

    They seem to ring true whether we exist or not.
    There is absolutely no way to verify this to be true.
    Experientially and practically, you keep confirming these things are true, although theoretically and presumptuously you live contrary to those two qualities.  


    The 2 + 2 = 4 paragraph is in essence a repeat of the last paragraph. 
    I'm not following.

    Thus, to date, God is a more reasonable and likely explanation than chance happenstance.
    Describe to me the contrary position as in the not God argument.
    Mindless, unintentional, purposeless, pointless, irrational, indifferent chance happenstance.


    If it wasn't clear I am not a fan of your questions. Instead of actually presenting an argument for your side you instead resort to condemning the other. Why not make a compelling argument instead of shifting the burden of proof?

    The questions themselves present an argument. That argument is, make sense of ultimately anything from a chance, chaotic, random, happenstance universe, one without a mind behind it that wills it and sustains it. 

    First, with a chance happenstance universe what is the why? It just is. And why should there be a how or what?
  • TheRealNihilist
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    Not only questions but they are questions to an atheistic worldview.
    Care to tell me this worldview?
    How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability?
    Please put this in more simpler terms. Are you saying how did this universe form without a God? 
    But we formulate mathematical equations that are not invented by us.
    Who invented this?
    Not only this but we continually seek meaning in what, by atheist standards, would be chance happenstance, an ultimately meaningless universe.
    You can seek meaning in an ultimately meaningless universe, do you disagree?
    Experientially and practically, you keep confirming these things are true, although theoretically and presumptuously you live contrary to those two qualities.
    You saying it is true doesn't demonstrate it to be the case.
    I'm not following.
    What you said in the paragraph that starts with "2 + 2 = 4 means nothing to a tree or rock" is something you covered in the last paragraph. Things exist outside our mind which was the essence of the two paragraphs which is why I didn't cover it.
    Mindless, unintentional, purposeless, pointless, irrational, indifferent chance happenstance.
    Explain how God did so is a more compelling argument.
    I'll entertain the strawman just here.
    That argument is, make sense of ultimately anything from a chance, chaotic, random, happenstance universe, one without a mind behind it that wills it and sustains it. 
    So you were begging the question? Instead of actually presenting an argument you are assuming it to be true without evidence.
    First, with a chance happenstance universe what is the why? It just is. And why should there be a how or what?
    Why does why matter to you? Do you want there to be a God or are you finally going to give an argument for once?
    The reason why you can ask how or what is because we can use what we know to understand what and how occurs. Asking why requires to know the person doing it. I don't think you have a connection to God. If you did please present it to science as our best way to find observable evidence. 
  • PGA2.0
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    Not only questions but they are questions to an atheistic worldview.
    Care to tell me this worldview?
    It either denies God/gods or it lives and looks at life as though none exists. Thus, its explanation of the universe is materialistic or naturalistic.

    How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability?
    Please put this in more simpler terms. Are you saying how did this universe form without a God? 
    I'm asking to make sense of why we can do science or why things continue to function or in the same manner (uniformly) so we can predict outcomes and make equations that explain the way these processes work? In a random chance universe, why should things continue in the same way that we and every other human being have experienced them as happening or could reason out the process? There would be no reason for the process. It would be willy nilly.

    Randon chance happenstance would be similar to expecting dice to roll by themselves without any intention in them rolling and then expecting them to continually roll the same number millions and billions of times without exception. While such principles can work theoretically they do not work experientially. If you think they do, then roll six exclusively one million times in a row with the same number coming up each time and without intentionally fixing the dice. Thus, unless the dice are fixed do you think you would be able to do this?

    Now, with intentionality, you could rig the dice to perform the same outcome every time. 

    But we formulate mathematical equations that are not invented by us.
    Who invented this?
    That would depend on whether you believe we discover these principles of mathematics that explain the way things function, these natural laws such as gravity or the laws of thermodynamics? Or do you believe we invent them? Do you believe they do not exist without our thinking them?

    Well, granted it does not depend on any of our minds because these principles work whether we think them or not it would be reasonable to believe they depend on a necessary mind - God. Thus, there is a reason that we discover them. We, being made in the image and likeness of God think His thoughts after Him. We discover something in the process of how He makes or sustains the universe. 

    Not only this but we continually seek meaning in what, by atheist standards, would be chance happenstance, an ultimately meaningless universe.
    You can seek meaning in an ultimately meaningless universe, do you disagree?
    Sure we can create meaning but ultimately it means nothing. 

    Experientially and practically, you keep confirming these things are true, although theoretically and presumptuously you live contrary to those two qualities.
    You saying it is true doesn't demonstrate it to be the case.
    But one view is consistent with experience, the other is not. So you live contrary to what you inwardly believe. 

    I'm not following.
    What you said in the paragraph that starts with "2 + 2 = 4 means nothing to a tree or rock" is something you covered in the last paragraph. Things exist outside our mind which was the essence of the two paragraphs which is why I didn't cover it.
    ?

    Mindless, unintentional, purposeless, pointless, irrational, indifferent chance happenstance.
    Explain how God did so is a more compelling argument.
    I'll entertain the strawman just here.
    We could only know if God revealed this, which is what the Bible claims. Now, if the Bible is what it claims it would, in and of itself, have confirmations that what is said is true or reasonable to believe. I believe I can show that it is reasonable and logical in that history, experientially, philosophically that it does. 

    The Bible reveals God spoke the universe into existence. He said, "Let there be light, and there was light."

    Thus, the created order came from His mind. He thought it into existence. It was no more difficult to God than a thought. 

    That argument is, make sense of ultimately anything from a chance, chaotic, random, happenstance universe, one without a mind behind it that wills it and sustains it. 
    So you were begging the question? Instead of actually presenting an argument you are assuming it to be true without evidence.
    I am asking for an explanation from a worldview that discounts God and that is reasonable to believe. How does that beg the question? If there is no intention behind the universe explain how and why it sustains itself and why it must?

    Again, there would be no reason why, yet I bet you can think of many. Immediately you would think of why in terms of gravity and other factors like the distance between bodies like stars and planets and galaxies, in relation to gravitations pulls, etc, etc. 

    First, with a chance happenstance universe what is the why? It just is. And why should there be a how or what?
    Why does why matter to you?
    It matters because I can make sense of the 'why' with God and ultimately I do not believe an atheistic worldview can and remain consistent with its starting presupposition - no God. 


    Do you want there to be a God or are you finally going to give an argument for once?
    It is not a question of wanting or not wanting but whether there is a God. My argument is that granting God these things become explainable and make sense. 

    Morality makes sense if there is an unchanging, fixed, universal, absolute, ultimate reference point and measure. Without it why is your FEELING any better than mine? 

    The reason why you can ask how or what is because we can use what we know to understand what and how occurs.
    But do you know or understand origins? If you are wrong on origins how much more are you wrong on? 

    Asking why requires to know the person doing it.
    Why does the earth rotate around the sun? Gravitational pulls causes the orbit (or God as the reason behind gravity).

    Why did the mouse eat the poison bait? It was hungry. Did that require I know the person for the explanation?

    Why does the water rise at high tide? Because of the gravitational pull of the moon. Does that require I know a person?

    Now, why existence? Why is there something rather than nothing? 

    I don't think you have a connection to God. If you did please present it to science as our best way to find observable evidence.
    How would you know since you deny God His existence, or at least ignore Him? What could I ever give to convince a person who does not want convincing? You would just find another reason to deny Him, another 'what if.' 
  • TheRealNihilist
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    --> @PGA2.0
    It either denies God/gods or it lives and looks at life as though none exists. Thus, its explanation of the universe is materialistic or naturalistic.
    How about if I take the view that things did exist before the big bang but it wasn't God? 
    I'm asking to make sense of why we can do science or why things continue to function or in the same manner (uniformly) so we can predict outcomes and make equations that explain the way these processes work?
    Please tell me how God conforms to cause and effect. If God doesn't God has no support in science unless you are making the claim it created it. At that point please stop begging the question and prove to me God exists instead of assuming it is true.
    Well, granted it does not depend on any of our minds because these principles work whether we think them
    I did not grant this. Explain yourself.
    Sure we can create meaning but ultimately it means nothing. 
    Why does it have to ultimately mean something?
    But one view is consistent with experience, the other is not. So you live contrary to what you inwardly believe.
    This is begging the question again. I am not going to explain this because I have already given an answer earlier on that I would've used here.
    ?
    The two paragraphs after "There would be no intent. How does chaos and chance happenstance explain uniformity of nature and nature's sustainability?" are the same. That is all.
    We could only know if God revealed this, which is what the Bible claims.
    Are you an agnostic?
    The Bible reveals God spoke the universe into existence. He said, "Let there be light, and there was light."
    I found this book called dog and in it and I stated "Let there be bad and there was bad". Is that proof of the devil (evil God)?
    I am asking for an explanation from a worldview that discounts God and that is reasonable to believe.
    Please read the prior statement earlier. I stated give me an argument. You said there was arguments in the question themselves. Meaning instead of actually giving evidence for your worldview you instead resort to begging the question by ridiculing the other side. You pretty much implied your side is true without even proving it.
    If there is no intention behind the universe explain how and why it sustains itself and why it must?
    Why does the universe need intention?
    It matters because I can make sense of the 'why' with God and ultimately I do not believe an atheistic worldview can and remain consistent with its starting presupposition - no God. 
    So what I am getting here is that it feels good to see the world in your way so you accept it?
    My argument is that granting God these things become explainable and make sense. 
    Begging the question yet again. You know you are not making an argument right?

    How about we assume Devil (evil God) to be true? I feel like it explains the world.
    Morality makes sense if there is an unchanging, fixed, universal, absolute, ultimate reference point and measure. Without it why is your FEELING any better than mine? 
    Yet again no argument. You are basically saying my dad makes sense of strawberries. Without my dad how do I make sense of strawberries? I just picked up on this argument from authority. Instead of actually providing evidence God did this, you are saying God did this as an authority on the subject. While also shifting the burden of proof yet again. 
    If you are wrong on origins how much more are you wrong on?
    You are in no position to question my position. At least I don't lie about the reality of things. You use the supernatural (unattainable thing) to support your arguments. You use feelings to support your claims and an old book. 
    Now, why existence? Why is there something rather than nothing? 
    I don't know. Doesn't mean I will beg the question to be what I would like it to be. I would like to hear an argument instead of this constant deflection. 
    How would you know since you deny God His existence, or at least ignore Him? What could I ever give to convince a person who does not want convincing? You would just find another reason to deny Him, another 'what if.' 
    Who said anything about me? I specifically talked about science. Give your findings to science and see what they think of the supernatural. I am going under the suspicion you don't actually want to give your old book to science because you know they don't agree with the findings. If this is true then you are pretty much cherry picking what you understand through science to suit your agenda and discard what doesn't conform to it. 


  • Tejretics
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    --> @PGA2.0
    PS. I was wondering whether you agree with the comments of one atheist on the philosophic thread that God has nothing to do with philosophy since you bring up the subject? 
    I haven’t seen the comment, but my guess is I don’t.

    Anyway, I’m not particularly interested in adjudicating the question of whether God exists. This thread was related more to comparing the relative strength of arguments against God’s existence than (1) discussing various arguments on both sides or (2) checking if this argument actually disproves God in the absolute, rather than relative to other atheistic arguments. So I’m not going to put in much effort in responding to you; my apologies! (Feel free to have the discussion in this thread if you’d like, though, I’m sure other people are willing to engage.)

  • Tejretics
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    There’s an error in the original post. It says:

    So if we’re considering God’s existence from a Bayesian perspective, where H is the hypothesis that God exists and is any evidence in favor of God, P(H) is low, so P(e | H) would have to be pretty high and P(e | ~H) would have to be pretty low for an argument in favor of God’s existence to not work.
    That should read “in favor of God’s existence to work.” 
  • PGA2.0
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    --> @TheRealNihilist
    It either denies God/gods or it lives and looks at life as though none exists. Thus, its explanation of the universe is materialistic or naturalistic.
    How about if I take the view that things did exist before the big bang but it wasn't God?
    That just takes the process back one step further.

    It still does not explain whether the process is a) random chance happenstance or b) initiated by a mindful, intelligent, intentional Being. 
     
    I'm asking to make sense of why we can do science or why things continue to function or in the same manner (uniformly) so we can predict outcomes and make equations that explain the way these processes work?
    Please tell me how God conforms to cause and effect.
    I like the scenario R. C. Sproul uses. Suppose we are exploring a new part of the globe and come across a fairly new hoed garden, organized in neat rows, with ten different crops just sprouting that we include in our diet, in the middle of the jungle. We assume that there is a gardener but after waiting a week no gardener shows up. We search everywhere and there is no sign of human life anywhere within hundreds of miles that would tend the garden. The jungle looks pristine except for this one patch of ground. We speculate on all kinds of things but the gardener dies the death of one thousand explanations. Does that mean there is no gardener? We have exhausted our explanation of reasonable causes of the garden's existence. Well, it still does not explain the existence of the garden. 

    God is an explanation for the universe. God is also a reasonable explanation for the universe. We can trace cause and effect back to a point in time yet no further. For a number of solid reasons, we speculate that the universe had a beginning. We see a causal effect of things up to that point yet no further. Since everything we witness has a beginning we reason it is logical based on the data that the universe has a cause as well. Of course, we can speculate that some things do not have a cause. Those things would be eternal. Is the universe one of those things? Evidence to date suggests otherwise. So we have to have a sufficient cause for the universe if the universe has a beginning. Was the Big Bang the cause of the universe? It begs the question of what caused the Big Bang and why did it happen? Is the explanation for the universe covered within the universe? Jim Wallace, a homicide crime detective who worked for the LA police force and is used to examining crime scenes would look at the scene of death from within the room to determine if the evidence pointed to suicide or murder. If the clues pointed to outside evidence the crime would be investigated as a homicide because the evidence pointed to someone outside the room causing the death.

    So the question comes down to can the evidence within the universe point to a sufficient answer or not?

    Now, if you are asking if God conforms to cause and effect how can an eternal being have a cause? God exists outside of time. 
     

    If God doesn't God has no support in science unless you are making the claim it created it. At that point please stop begging the question and prove to me God exists instead of assuming it is true.
    The claim I am making is that science relies on consistency/repeatability. How does a random chance happenstance chain of events create that sustainability and consistency? I am asking for a reasonable explanation from you. I am questioning whether you can provide one that makes sense of science from your foundational starting point - a universe without intent nor intelligence. 

    Well, granted it does not depend on any of our minds because these principles work whether we think them
    I did not grant this. Explain yourself.
    2 + 2 = 4. Is that always true or can it ever be false? If so, in what universe? Thus, it seems to be a universal truth and something that does not just depend on your mind or mine thinking it. It seems self-evident and necessary and yet it requires mindfulness to think it. Principles of mathematics such as natural laws are discovered, not invented. They take minds to think them yet they are discovered not invented unless you can show that they only exist because you or I think them. The problem is they were operating before we discovered them or thought about them. Thus, we seem to be discovering someone else's thoughts before us. They don't seem to depend as to their explanation on any one human being or human origin since we discover them. We fit these principles into formulas or simple equations such as for gravity --> g = GM/r 2, or the force of gravity on earth -->  F g = mg.

    The equation for the force of gravity is




    That, to me shows the economy and simplicity of God and yet also His complex and incomprehensible mind. Thus, in science, we seem to think God's thoughts after Him.