If God exists, then where did he come from?

Techne

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 28, 2008
Messages
12,401
We know that the observed universe started with an expansion event (about 14 BYA), we do not know the origin of the singularity from which the observed universe expanded.
Let's for arguments sake assume that the singularity is the first material substance to come into existence. This means that there was no material substance any moment before it, in fact there were no moments before it. It then follows that it does not have an accidental cause i.e. a cause that is prior in time to the singularity. So the question "what is the accidental cause of the singularity" is simply nonsensical.

Does this imply that the singularity has no essential cause? No. Why not? Well, if its nature was its act of existing then it would not cease to exist. But it did cease to exist. The singularity is no more. This implies that it was a contingent material substance and therefore that it was a composite of its essence and its act of existing. This implies that something conjoined its essence and act of existing whenever it existed and that essential causal chain ends in something whose essence is its act of existing (just like for any other material substance).

No, seems to me it would be necessary, and everything within it would be contingent. (That neatly does away with the necessity of your second tier necessary being)
The universe is the sum of all material substances. The beginning of the first material substance heralded the beginning of the universe (for arguments sake, the universe began with the beginning of the singularity). The existence of a universe depends on the existence of material substances. The first material substance (the singularity) was contingent, thus the beginning depended on the existence of a first contingent material substance, which ultimately depended on something whose essence is its act of existing.
 

alloytoo

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
12,266
Let's for arguments sake assume that the singularity is the first material substance to come into existence. This means that there was no material substance any moment before it, in fact there were no moments before it. It then follows that it does not have an accidental cause i.e. a cause that is prior in time to the singularity. So the question "what is the accidental cause of the singularity" is simply nonsensical.

Does this imply that the singularity has no essential cause? No. Why not? Well, if its nature was its act of existing then it would not cease to exist. But it did cease to exist. The singularity is no more. This implies that it was a contingent material substance and therefore that it was a composite of its essence and its act of existing. This implies that something conjoined its essence and act of existing whenever it existed and that essential causal chain ends in something whose essence is its act of existing (just like for any other material substance).
An awful lot of verbage and gymnastics.

The singularity continues to exist, you are part of it.

The universe is the sum of all material substances. The beginning of the first material substance heralded the beginning of the universe (for arguments sake, the universe began with the beginning of the singularity). The existence of a universe depends on the existence of material substances. The first material substance (the singularity) was contingent, thus the beginning depended on the existence of a first contingent material substance, which ultimately depended on something whose essence is its act of existing.
Again. composition error.
 

Swa

Honorary Master
Joined
May 4, 2012
Messages
23,833
Not nearly as much as theists. Take any two Christians and any two atheists. The Christians will have more in common in the way they live out their lives and react to situations when compared to the atheists.
I see more in common wrt beliefs amongst atheists.

May I just ask why these statements, from both ends of the spectrum, are being entertained in PD?

It's not a place to start discussing the traits of one or another group of people. It's intended as a sub-forum for intellectual debate about philosophical and religious topics. This bullschit back-and-forth between you lot about what christians do and what atheists are, are quite frankly puerile and don't engender proper discussion. What began as a justification for SaiyanZ's point of view was trolled by Swa into a false accusation of a group of wildly diverse people. It's now being entertained as if relevant and important to this discussion. It isn't.

Swa, I'm asking nicely, please stop doing this. It is derailing topics into hate-fuelled attacks from both supposed "sides". This isn't a soap-box for you to voice your discontent with people. And likewise, it isn't a platform for others to voice their hatred for religion or specific religions.

If we can agree on this then we can have proper, meaningful debate. If we continue down the path of there being this "us vs them" mentality, this sub-forum will continue to be ignored by people who could actually add value, and topics will ping-pong back and forth between various iterations of what boils down to being one big "up yours!".

TL;DR - grow up...
Oh yes as usual blame the person responding and not the one who brought it up. In case you haven't noticed there is no meaningful debate in PD. But you'll continue to ignore who's fault that is.

Philosophy is thought which has been thought out correctly. It's not musings of minds, which is what ordinary people may think. When you claim to call it musings of minds you are philosophizing, so maybe that's also a musing of mind eh and just verbose nonsense? Every time you think about something you philosophize. You either do it with careful self reflection and avoid mistakes or you do it carelessly.

I'm not bending anything to religion. Reasoning out the existence of God and His properties / nature is not religion. But often philosophy goes with religion, it also goes with science (philosophy of science with guys like Popper), ethics and so on.

The philosophical system first formulated by Aristotle and other Greeks was later adapted by the Christian Church through works of the Scholastics, such as Thomas Aquinas. Not all religion is just stuff made up by Bill and Ted's amazing Bible shack.
I find it amusing that some people can reject philosophy. Science can't prove itself correct when not even mathematics can prove itself correct but relies on philosophy.

Because I have seen the end result of it - as in your posts. Look, our minds can make up all sorts of wonderful sounding theories - especially when we want the theories to support our beliefs - but at the end of the day it is man made musings.
Grand philosophical realisation. Houston we have a breakthrough. Now just apply that to the rest of your beliefs.

Guns having been blazing from both sides of the spectrum for a number of years now, with each side trying to convince the other.
Exactly

How so?

Universe = sum of everything in it. And we know that started with the Big Bang. Which had some cause.
He just picked up something again and is trying to sound intelligent. The fallacy of composition has exceptions and it usually applies the other way around. I.e. what's true for the whole may not be true for the parts instead of what's true for the parts may not be true for the whole.

It may also be a brute fact.

Notwithstanding, you haven't answered why special pleading a universe into existence is any less right than special pleading a universe maker?

Occum would suggest the inverse.
Fact or not does not make it any less special pleading.

If special pleading is used neither is any more or less right. But you're failing to see that it's a rebuttal.

Ockham (who is wrongly attributed to the razor) would not suggest anything of the sort.

I'm neither assuming nor pleading it, I'm merely want a justification for excluding it in favour of a far more complex and less likely option.
You don't know the complexity and likelihood of either option.

Not quite. The universe didn't "start" with the Big Bang - no scientific theory proposes this. The Big Bang was just a rapid expansion of the universe.

[edit]
Taking this further: as far as we are concerned the universe has existed forever. We are only causally connected to other events within our light cone that started at the Big Bang. According to the Big Bang Theory the universe was contained within a infinitesimal spacetime at the time the Big Bang occurred (t=0). As such, according to the General Theory, time would have "stood still" while the universe was bound within this infinitesimal spacetime - time-like geodesics have no extension into the past at t=0 when the metric blows up to infinities.
Special pleading :p
 

Techne

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 28, 2008
Messages
12,401
The singularity continues to exist, you are part of it.
The singularity existed at the beginning and when it ceased to exit it gave rise to other substances that add up to make the universe. It is like saying water split into hydrogen and oxygen and then claiming water continues to exist and oxygen and hydrogen are part of it. That does not make sense.

Again. composition error.
I don't know why you think so. Could you please elaborate why you think this is true?

Does a balloon cease to exist once inflated?
No. A balloon can be argued to be a substance on its own so it can undergo accidental change (e.g. change in size) without ceasing to be a substance. The universe is not a substance, it is the sum of material substances.
 

alloytoo

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
12,266
It may also be a brute fact.

Notwithstanding, you haven't answered why special pleading a universe into existence is any less right than special pleading a universe maker?

Occam would suggest the inverse.
Fact or not does not make it any less special pleading.
A brute fact requires no pleading, it merely is.

If special pleading is used neither is any more or less right.
"A universe just popped into existence."

"Show me?"

"There you go, one universe."

"Kewl"
"A god just popped into existence."

"Show me?"

"....ah.....must be around here somewhere..."

"Maybe the other guy should show me his universe again....."
Frustra fit per plura quod potest fieri per pauciora


But you're failing to see that it's a rebuttal.
For the rebuttal to be effective he would have to offer why his special pleading is superior to the other option.

Ockham (who is wrongly attributed to the razor) would not suggest anything of the sort.
"Occam's razor (also written as Ockham's razor from William of Ockham (c. 1287 – 1347), and in Latin lex parsimoniae) is a principle of parsimony, economy, or succinctness used in logic and problem-solving. It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected." - Wiki


You don't know the complexity and likelihood of either option.
I don't have to assume a universe exists, therefore my position is simpler.
 

Swa

Honorary Master
Joined
May 4, 2012
Messages
23,833
A brute fact requires no pleading, it merely is.
A brute fact first has to be proven to be a fact.

Frustra fit per plura quod potest fieri per pauciora
I'm assuming what you're trying to say is that the universe just popping into existence requires the least amount of assumptions. Not the case. The existence of the universe isn't proof that it just popped into existence. It is an assumption of your part. The universe just popping into existence actually requires more assumptions to make it fit for life so if Ockham had a razor it would actually side with religion in this case.

For the rebuttal to be effective he would have to offer why his special pleading is superior to the other option.
You're still missing the point that if special pleading can just be asserted it can be done on both sides.

"Occam's razor (also written as Ockham's razor from William of Ockham (c. 1287 – 1347), and in Latin lex parsimoniae) is a principle of parsimony, economy, or succinctness used in logic and problem-solving. It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected." - Wiki
It's a myth. There is no reference that William of Ockham ever used the phrase. The law of parcimony also doesn't state that the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be chosen but instead that entities should not be multiplied needlessly. Iow amongst a set of competing hypotheses the simplest adequate explanation is preferable.

I don't have to assume a universe exists, therefore my position is simpler.
Neither do I.
 

alloytoo

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
12,266
A brute fact first has to be proven to be a fact.


I'm assuming what you're trying to say is that the universe just popping into existence requires the least amount of assumptions. Not the case. The existence of the universe isn't proof that it just popped into existence. It is an assumption of your part. The universe just popping into existence actually requires more assumptions to make it fit for life so if Ockham had a razor it would actually side with religion in this case.


You're still missing the point that if special pleading can just be asserted it can be done on both sides.


It's a myth. There is no reference that William of Ockham ever used the phrase. The law of parcimony also doesn't state that the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be chosen but instead that entities should not be multiplied needlessly. Iow amongst a set of competing hypotheses the simplest adequate explanation is preferable.


Neither do I.
You make an awful number of baseless assumptions.
 

alloytoo

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
12,266
LOL [sarcasm]Nice rebuttal[/sarcasm]
But you've failed to answer question.

Instead you deflect by raising the issue of life in the universe, a silly attempt to introduce the debunked fine tune argument.

and waffle on about what William of Ockham may or may not have said.

What makes your special pleading with all it's additional complexity, no evidence and assumptions better than mine, for which I have, hey presto, a universe.
 

SaiyanZ

Executive Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2008
Messages
8,137
A better question would be:

If God doesn't exist, why do people think he/she/it does?
 

DrJohnZoidberg

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 24, 2006
Messages
21,535
A better question would be:

If God doesn't exist, why do people think he/she/it does?
A deeper understanding of the universe has only very recently started to explain things in detail, before this people had no way to explain even the most basic of things that are common knowledge now. It was much easier just to make up mythical gods to attribute these things to. Cultures were then forged from these beliefs and here we sit today.
 

Solarion

Honorary Master
Joined
Nov 14, 2012
Messages
18,837
"I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life." - Revelation 21:6

I don't think God needs us to understand, our understanding is by and by and pointless. What is just is.
 

alloytoo

Honorary Master
Joined
Sep 12, 2006
Messages
12,266
A better question would be:

If God doesn't exist, why do people think he/she/it does?
Gods are early man's attempts to both understand and manipulate the word. Gods offered explanatory power and something which whom early man could reason, barter, flatter or guilt into action.
 

Swa

Honorary Master
Joined
May 4, 2012
Messages
23,833
But you've failed to answer question.

Instead you deflect by raising the issue of life in the universe, a silly attempt to introduce the debunked fine tune argument.
There was no question. You simply assume that your universe means evidence it popped into existence. If that's the case my universe is evidence it was created. The universe is only evidence it exists, not how it came to be. You fail at comprehension as usual. And the fact that the universe is fine tuned for life has never been debunked. Only more assumptions of a universe with the correct variables magically existing all by itself or a multiverse or them simply being there magically by necessity.

and waffle on about what William of Ockham may or may not have said.

What makes your special pleading with all it's additional complexity, no evidence and assumptions better than mine, for which I have, hey presto, a universe.
It's important as the real "razor" is a very different principle than the one you're using. Not my fault if you can't understand that and think it's all "waffle." Again the issue is what makes your special pleading with additional complexity, no evidence and assumptions better than mine, for which I TOO have a universe?

A deeper understanding of the universe has only very recently started to explain things in detail, before this people had no way to explain even the most basic of things that are common knowledge now. It was much easier just to make up mythical gods to attribute these things to. Cultures were then forged from these beliefs and here we sit today.
It's a common misunderstanding that gods were invented to explain natural phenomena. A deeper understanding of mythology reveals that this is not the case. Beings like Zeus were simply capable of using the natural phenomenon of lightning and weren't the origin of it or even controlling it. We still don't have a satisfactory explanation when getting down to the fundamentals. All of this is irrelevant when dealing with the basic question of the reason for the nature of existence itself.
 
Last edited:
Top