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Old 05-11-2005, 09:56 AM   #16
schemanista
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PZ Myers has a really good blog entry about this exact subject on Pharyngula.

Stained Glass, if you haven't already, check out his blog, and Panda's Thumb where this exact issue is discussed ad nauseum and in great detail.
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Old 05-11-2005, 11:02 AM   #17
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Your first assumption, that "Nothing can exist without purpose. Anything that exists must have to exist, or it wouldnt" is a mere statement of faith. "purpose" is an anthromorphic construct and has no absolute meaning. In order for your proof to be conclusive, assumption # 1 would not only have to be universally agreed upon but true! And while the statement: "Nothing can exist without purpose" can be argued, it cannot be proven.
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Old 05-11-2005, 11:48 AM   #18
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a lot of people responded to my claim that nothing can exist without purpose. This was a misuse of diction. What I meant to say was "nothing can exist without cause." Since a god is not a necissary condition for the existence of the universe, then there must be a cause for god's existence if there is to be a god. (even if it was a necissary condition, that would also mean there was a rule higher than god.)
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Old 05-11-2005, 12:29 PM   #19
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Quote:
MarcusMaximus wrote
a lot of people responded to my claim that nothing can exist without purpose. This was a misuse of diction. What I meant to say was "nothing can exist without cause."
There is evidence that indicates that this assumption may not be true.

We do not live within a Newtonian "clockwork" universe, although it is a good enough approximation for most everyday activities.
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Old 05-11-2005, 01:33 PM   #20
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MarcusMaximus wrote
a lot of people responded to my claim that nothing can exist without purpose. This was a misuse of diction. What I meant to say was "nothing can exist without cause." Since a god is not a necissary condition for the existence of the universe, then there must be a cause for god's existence if there is to be a god. (even if it was a necissary condition, that would also mean there was a rule higher than god.)
I guess I look at it this way:

#1) we are here, we exist blah blah blah.

#2) If there always must be a cause for something, then our universe must have had infinite causes on an infinite timeline, and since there would be no possible way to reach a point on an infinite timeline, most scientists would agree that there was a beginning to our universe.

#3) Since there was a beginning, if we consider this beginning without a god, there must have been some event that happened without any cause or reason. To say that there was an infinite number of causes before would not allow for any cause to actually occur. So there must have been an uncaused event even if the universe was created without a god.

This is why it makes a lot more sense to me that God would be the one who caused this unexplained beginning than, well...nothing. The fact that God has no cause or beginning is, to me, part of the definition of God. He is because He is and without Him nothing would be.
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Old 05-11-2005, 01:53 PM   #21
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veritas wrote
It makes a lot more sense to me that God would be the one who caused this unexplained beginning than, well...nothing. The fact that God has no cause or beginning is, to me, part of the definition of God. He is because He is and without Him nothing would be.
That gets you nowhere. All you have done is postulated a hypothetical solution (an uncaused object) and called it 'God'.

You have not ruled out the possibility that an infinite regression is invalid or simply that reality itself is the uncaused event.

I think you leap to a conclusion. The irony is that your "uncaused event" God really tells you nothing, theologically. Absolutely nothing.

Does this 'God' still exist? Dunno.
Is it sentient? Dunno.
Did it intend to cause the universe as we see it? Dunno.
Does it know about us? Dunno.
Did it intent to create us? Dunno.

What typically happens is that someone postulates God as the "uncaused event" and then immediately uses it as evidence of the Christ's resurrection.
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Old 05-11-2005, 02:04 PM   #22
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baric wrote
That gets you nowhere. All you have done is postulated a hypothetical solution (an uncaused object) and called it 'God'.
Yeah, Im just making the point that it is not an argument against God's existence to say that since He has no cause He must not exist.


Quote:
baric wrote
You have not ruled out the possibility that an infinite regression is invalid or simply that reality itself is the uncaused event.
Explain to me how infinite regression is valid. If there is no beginning, you cannot ever start forward movement in order to reach a certain event.


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baric wrote
I think you leap to a conclusion. The irony is that your "uncaused event" God really tells you nothing, theologically. Absolutely nothing.
I did not attempt to make any other points other than the fact that God does not need a 'reason'. I've made numerous posts from my theological viewpoint but I don't have time to get into all that right now. This isnt the right topic to start it under either.
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Old 05-11-2005, 03:12 PM   #23
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hmm something stuck out at me while reading recent replies. Could the argument that nothing can exist without cause also be used to prove the existence of a higher order than the universe we exist in? Even according to the higher sciences of today, the only random thing in the universe is the decay of a radioactive isotope. This would mean that the original existence of the universe could not have been random and must have been caused by some higher order. Whether you choose to call this higher order god or not is, of course, irrelevant.
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Old 05-11-2005, 03:26 PM   #24
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right, but with the exception of the random creation of particles near a black hole, none of them involve actually creating matter/energy from nothingness, which is what would be necissary for the universe to exist. (unless you claim that the universe always has been, in which case it is little different from god.)
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Old 05-11-2005, 03:56 PM   #25
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but that can only happen near a singularity... since nothingness isn't a singularity the random creation of particle/antiparticle pairs couldnt happen. If there was a singularity which this could happen next to then there would be matter and energy which would similarly have to be caused by something.
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Old 05-11-2005, 06:11 PM   #26
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MarcusMaximus wrote
but that can only happen near a singularity... since nothingness isn't a singularity the random creation of particle/antiparticle pairs couldnt happen. If there was a singularity which this could happen next to then there would be matter and energy which would similarly have to be caused by something.
Virtual particle pairs are created and annihilated everywhere, all the time. The only become real particles near a singularity when the gravity of the black hole is too strong for one particle of the pair - the other annihilates in a burst of pure energy.

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Old 05-11-2005, 06:19 PM   #27
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veritas wrote
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baric wrote
You have not ruled out the possibility that an infinite regression is invalid or simply that reality itself is the uncaused event.
Explain to me how infinite regression is valid. If there is no beginning, you cannot ever start forward movement in order to reach a certain event.
Why do you implicitly assume that time is linear?

If time is not linear, then there is no "beginning" and no infinite regression.
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Old 05-12-2005, 10:20 AM   #28
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St. Teabag wrote
Quote:
Tenspace wrote
Quote:
MarcusMaximus wrote
but that can only happen near a singularity... since nothingness isn't a singularity the random creation of particle/antiparticle pairs couldnt happen. If there was a singularity which this could happen next to then there would be matter and energy which would similarly have to be caused by something.
Virtual particle pairs are created and annihilated everywhere, all the time. The only become real particles near a singularity when the gravity of the black hole is too strong for one particle of the pair - the other annihilates in a burst of pure energy.

Ten
I don't think you meant to say that did you ten? One particle cannot annihilate, it has to be a pair (a particle antiparticle pair in fact). If one virtual particle is pulled into the black hole and the other is not is will simply remain as a free particle. Virtual particles are only virtual because of the short time they exist. Antimatter is just as stable as matter as long as it doesn't see it's opposite
That's what I get for posting when I'm tired... :) I should have stated that the remaining particle does become a real particle, but has a 50% probability of pure annihilation. Now, you've got me reading up on the trans-Planckian problem. Physics is so much fun! :)

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Old 05-12-2005, 12:29 PM   #29
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St. Teabag wrote
what do you mean by "pure annihilation"?
There is a 50% probability that the particle removed from this universe by the black hole is not the antiparticle. The little antiparticle that remains will most certainly collide with another particle swimming in the dense soup at the Schwarzshield radius, its mass converting to pure energy. That's what I meant by pure annihilation. Now, I know that applies primarily to electron-positron collisions, but with the exception of proton annihilation, which produces neutrinos, whose three flavors are not necessarily massless, particle-antiparticle annihilation produces complete mass to energy conversion.

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Old 05-13-2005, 08:02 AM   #30
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" 1) Nothing can exist without cause. Anything that exists must have to exist, or it wouldnt.
2) An absolute God exists (that's right guys, a proof by contradiction)
3) There can be no higher order than an absolute god by definition of absolute.
4) there must be a reason for the absolute God to exist by #1.
5) there must be a higher order than the absolute God due to the existance of a reason for its existence.
6) contradiction between 5 and 3.
7) An absolute God doesn't exist by contradiction."
Note - 1) changed from 'purpose' to 'cause' as specified by MM.

Part two of 1) is an incorrect assumption. While it is correct that if something does exist, there is a 100% probability of its existing, this does not mean that the fact of its existence is required by the mere fact that it does exist. It is easy to postulate scenarios in which any given object's existence is not necessary - even when said object does exist.
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