The concept of "God" proven illogical

Doubletap

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The following argument by Nathanial Branden does, I think, counter successfully ANY "creationism" or "big bang" idea: "FIRST CAUSE" IS EXISTENCE, NOT GOD

Question: Since everything in the universe requires a cause, must not the universe itself have a cause, which is god?

Answer: There are two basic fallacies in this argument. The first is the assumption that, if the universe required a causal explanation, the positing of a "god" would provide it. To posit god as the creator of the universe is only to push the problem back one step farther: Who then created the god? Was there still an earlier god who created the god in question? We are thus led to an infinite regress - the very dilemma that the positing of a "god" was intended to solve. But if it is argued that no one created god, that god does not require a cause, that god has existed eternally - then on what grounds is it denied that the universe has existed eternally?

It is true that there cannot be an infinite series of antecedent causes. But recognition of this fact should lead one to reappraise the validity of the initial question, not to attempt to answer it by stepping outside the universe into some gratuitously invented supernatural dimension.

This leads to the second and more fundamental fallacy in this argument: the assumption that the universe as a whole requires a causal explanation. It does not. The universe is the total of that which exists. Within the universe, the emergence of new entities can be explained in terms of the actions of entities that already exist: The cause of a tree is the seed of the parent tree; the cause of a machine is the purposeful reshaping of matter by men. All actions presuppose the existence of entities - and all emergences of new entities presuppose the existence of entities that caused their emergence. All causality presupposes the existence of something that acts as a cause. To demand a cause for all of existence is to demand a contradiction: if the cause exists, it is part of existence; if it does not exist, it cannot be a cause. Nothing cannot be the cause of something. Nothing does not exist. Causality presupposes existence; existence does not presuppose causality. There can be no cause "outside" of existence or "anterior" to it. The forms of existence may change and evolve, but the fact of existence is the irreducible primary at the base of all causal chains. Existence - not "god" - is the First Cause.

Just as the concept of causality applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole - so the concept of time applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole. The universe did not "begin" - it did not, at some point in time "spring into being." Time is a measurement of motion. Motion presupposes entities that move. If nothing existed, there could be no time. Time is "in" the universe; the universe is not "in" time.

The man who asks, "Where did existence come from?" or "What caused it?" is the man who has never grasped that existence exists. This is the mentality of a savage or a mystic who regards existence as some sort of incomprehensible miracle - and seeks to "explain" it by reference to non-existence.

Existence is all that exists, the nonexistent does not exist; there is nothing for existence to have come out of - and nothing means nothing. If you are tempted to ask, "What's outside the universe?" - recognize that you are asking, "What's outside of existence?" and that the idea of "something outside of existence" is a contradiction in terms; nothing is outside of existence, and "nothing" is not just another kind of "something" - it is nothing. Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.

-- Nathaniel Branden PH.D Author, Psychologist
 

GrosMinet

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That's a bunch of strawmen and confusions that may be reasonably put down to a sophomore more than to a PhD. Theistic philosophers and theologians are way more sophisticated than that.



The following argument by Nathanial Branden does, I think, counter successfully ANY "creationism" or "big bang" idea: "FIRST CAUSE" IS EXISTENCE, NOT GOD

Since everything in the universe requires a cause, must not the universe itself have a cause, which is god?
That's not how Aquinas, or Bill Craig have argued their cases.

then on what grounds is it denied that the universe has existed eternally?
That's the only interesting question : is the universe eternal and cyclical or did it have an absolute beginning caused by a Creator?



The universe is the total of that which exists.
It's not the common meaning of the word "universe". I think it's better to define the universe as the sum of physical beings existing within space and time or something like that.

To demand a cause for all of existence is to demand a contradiction: if the cause exists, it is part of existence; if it does not exist, it cannot be a cause. Nothing cannot be the cause of something.
It's not how theists have been arguing. Theists don't demand a cause for "existence", they demand a cause for PHYSICAL existence. Or, more properly, for the physical world.

Just as the concept of causality applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole - so the concept of time applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole. The universe did not "begin" - it did not, at some point in time "spring into being." Time is a measurement of motion. Motion presupposes entities that move. If nothing existed, there could be no time. Time is "in" the universe; the universe is not "in" time.
Augustine pointed out that time itself may have had a beginning. There may have been a first moment.

The man who asks, "Where did existence come from?" or "What caused it?" is the man who has never grasped that existence exists. This is the mentality of a savage or a mystic who regards existence as some sort of incomprehensible miracle - and seeks to "explain" it by reference to non-existence.
Fortunately, theists are not the ones who do that.

Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.
That's at best an awkward expression. Existence does not "exist". THINGS, PEOPLE and their properties exist, and that's all. Existence as such is an abstraction, it is a concept of the mind, we don't literally perceive something called "existence" in the world. We perceive things which exist and we sometimes dream of things which don't exist, but that's all.
 
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Katzndogz

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It makes as much sense as the universe is a hologram and none of us is real. Therefore there can be no such thing as murder because no one is really alive. It's all just part of the hologram
 
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Doubletap

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I posted what I believe is an interesting take for those who care to discuss the points raised.
Merry Xmas to all:)
 

Mad_Cabbie

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If God can have immortality, why then not the universe?

???

Something must have already existed, unless it could have possibly been "borrowed" by an unconnected source that was tapped from some unmeasurable future point in time.

We see something similar with virtual particles, while they appear to come out of nowhere, they are actually coxed into existence.

While I would admit that god could have been the original source from which the universe came about, it would be more likely that they were BOTH here and the universe AND God could be considered the same entity.

Example: my left arm is my prime method by which I may manipulate my surroundings, yet it takes all of its orders from my brain. Without my brain, my arm has no direction and nothing to guide it. My body and my mind are part of me, however ... without my body, my brain would have no capacity for critical thought; thus, they are equally important.


This is always a good starting point for this type of discussion:
The law of conservation of mass, or principle of mass conservation, states that for any system closed to all transfers of matter and energy (both of which have mass), the mass of the system must remain constant over time, as system mass cannot change quantity if it is not added or removed. Hence, the quantity of mass is "conserved" over time. The law implies that mass can neither be created nor destroyed, although it may be rearranged in space, or the entities associated with it may be changed in form, as for example when light or physical work is transformed into particles that contribute the same mass to the system as the light or work had contributed. The law implies (requires) that during any chemical reaction, nuclear reaction, or radioactive decay in an isolated system, the total mass of the reactants or starting materials must be equal to the mass of the products.
This suggests that the universe is immortal and was NOT created.
The concept of mass conservation is widely used in many fields such as chemistry, mechanics, and fluid dynamics. Historically, mass conservation was discovered in chemical reactions by Antoine Lavoisier in the late 18th century, and was of crucial importance in the progress from alchemy to the modern natural science of chemistry.
Here is a simplified explanation of matter.


Theory of created universe


 
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ABikerSailor

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It makes as much sense as the universe is a hologram and none of us is real. Therefore there can be no such thing as murder because no one is really alive. It's all just part of the hologram
Spoken like a true psychopath.

Good to know that we can see at least a part of your scheme. I pity those you will kill eventually because you think that there is no such thing as murder.

I also hope that you're taken out before you can kill someone, since you don't think that there is such a thing as murder.
 

Chuckt

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it makes as much sense as the universe is a hologram and none of us is real. Therefore there can be no such thing as murder because no one is really alive. It's all just part of the hologram
lol.
 

Chuckt

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That's a bunch of strawmen and confusions that may be reasonably put down to a sophomore more than to a PhD. Theistic philosophers and theologians are way more sophisticated than that.
You saved me a lot of time. Thank you.
 

Delta4Embassy

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L-rd save me from psychologists acting like astrophysicists. :)

If G-d is immortal, because the universe isn't, we wouldn't be able to know if G-d is or isn't immortal.

What I think many people don't understand about physics and explanations of the universe is that the explanations are usually only equations that work. It doesn't mean they're true, only that for a very specific problem, such and such an equation and explanation correctly answers the question - but it doesn't mean it's gonna work in every instance. Like classical mechanics vs quantum mechanics. For a while Newtonian physics worked solving very specific questions. As technology continued to advance and we discovered the atom and quantum scale though, these solutions stopped working. And now we seem poised to make a similar leap in scale going from the quantum to dark matter/energy scale. Consequently, things that 'work' right now may be shown to not work once we figure out what 96% of the universe actually is vis a vis dark matter and dark energy.

The hypothesis in favor right now about the universe itself is membrane theory. That there are perhaps many 'verses like sheets of paper stacked on top of each other but not precisely in contact with one another. When they do 'touch' big bang events are the result creating new 'sheets' of verses. Even more amazingly, there's evidence this might in fact be true as all matter in the universe is being pulled to one section of it as though by some gravitational force. As with another 'verse.

Unfortunately even this is the infinite regression idea. Rather than solving things it simply enlarges the scale. But when you think of the universe as a unit, and then other 'verses it makes G-d seem very small indeed. Of course that doesn't mean there isn't any gods, just that as our earthly religions describe it, compared to the multiverse, gods are really just as small as we are.
 

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The following argument by Nathanial Branden does, I think, counter successfully ANY "creationism" or "big bang" idea: "FIRST CAUSE" IS EXISTENCE, NOT GOD

Question: Since everything in the universe requires a cause, must not the universe itself have a cause, which is god?

Answer: There are two basic fallacies in this argument. The first is the assumption that, if the universe required a causal explanation, the positing of a "god" would provide it. To posit god as the creator of the universe is only to push the problem back one step farther: Who then created the god? Was there still an earlier god who created the god in question? We are thus led to an infinite regress - the very dilemma that the positing of a "god" was intended to solve. But if it is argued that no one created god, that god does not require a cause, that god has existed eternally - then on what grounds is it denied that the universe has existed eternally?

It is true that there cannot be an infinite series of antecedent causes. But recognition of this fact should lead one to reappraise the validity of the initial question, not to attempt to answer it by stepping outside the universe into some gratuitously invented supernatural dimension.

This leads to the second and more fundamental fallacy in this argument: the assumption that the universe as a whole requires a causal explanation. It does not. The universe is the total of that which exists. Within the universe, the emergence of new entities can be explained in terms of the actions of entities that already exist: The cause of a tree is the seed of the parent tree; the cause of a machine is the purposeful reshaping of matter by men. All actions presuppose the existence of entities - and all emergences of new entities presuppose the existence of entities that caused their emergence. All causality presupposes the existence of something that acts as a cause. To demand a cause for all of existence is to demand a contradiction: if the cause exists, it is part of existence; if it does not exist, it cannot be a cause. Nothing cannot be the cause of something. Nothing does not exist. Causality presupposes existence; existence does not presuppose causality. There can be no cause "outside" of existence or "anterior" to it. The forms of existence may change and evolve, but the fact of existence is the irreducible primary at the base of all causal chains. Existence - not "god" - is the First Cause.

Just as the concept of causality applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole - so the concept of time applies to events and entities within the universe, but not to the universe as a whole. The universe did not "begin" - it did not, at some point in time "spring into being." Time is a measurement of motion. Motion presupposes entities that move. If nothing existed, there could be no time. Time is "in" the universe; the universe is not "in" time.

The man who asks, "Where did existence come from?" or "What caused it?" is the man who has never grasped that existence exists. This is the mentality of a savage or a mystic who regards existence as some sort of incomprehensible miracle - and seeks to "explain" it by reference to non-existence.

Existence is all that exists, the nonexistent does not exist; there is nothing for existence to have come out of - and nothing means nothing. If you are tempted to ask, "What's outside the universe?" - recognize that you are asking, "What's outside of existence?" and that the idea of "something outside of existence" is a contradiction in terms; nothing is outside of existence, and "nothing" is not just another kind of "something" - it is nothing. Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.

-- Nathaniel Branden PH.D Author, Psychologist
Only us saints were given the knowledge from our Creator that we see illusions that aren't real. What is real is our Creator and His thoughts to make us believe we exist as more than His mere thoughts.
 

Mad_Cabbie

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Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.
That's at best an awkward expression. Existence does not "exist". THINGS, PEOPLE and their properties exist, and that's all. Existence as such is an abstraction, it is a concept of the mind, we don't literally perceive something called "existence" in the world. We perceive things which exist and we sometimes dream of things which don't exist, but that's all.
Think of existence as the sum of all things that are tangible; anything that has no energy, force or matter would be "nothing."

Now, imagine me saying "go 10 miles north of the north pole."

That would have the same basic coordinates as if I had said to you - "go out into the nothing and hang a left." Nothing is not a place, it's nothing.


Ergo, you cannot create something from nothing.
 
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hobelim

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Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.
That's at best an awkward expression. Existence does not "exist". THINGS, PEOPLE and their properties exist, and that's all. Existence as such is an abstraction, it is a concept of the mind, we don't literally perceive something called "existence" in the world. We perceive things which exist and we sometimes dream of things which don't exist, but that's all.
Think of existence as the sum of all things that are tangible; anything that has no energy, force or matter would be "nothing."

Now, imagine me saying "go 10 miles north of the north pole."

That would have the same basic coordinates as if I had said to you - "go out into the nothing and hang a left." Nothing is not a place, it's nothing.


Ergo, you cannot create something from nothing.
but you can create light where there had always been only darkness.

The creation story is not about the creation of the solar system or the universe.

it is about the law given as a light to teach people to distinguish between right and wrong, clean and unclean, true and false, and life and death in a world that had been for billions of years without shape and void where darkness had covered the face of the deep.

what is illogical is the assertion of human beings only a few thousand years removed from wild beasts that there are no higher intelligences and even one with absolute existence beyond the confines of space and time independent of the material universe..

to deny the incorporeal nature of existence is illogical since the realm of thought in which it is possible for people to even think is itself incorporeal and in existence.
 
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GrosMinet

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Think of existence as the sum of all things that are tangible; anything that has no energy, force or matter would be "nothing."
It would not exist as a physical being, sure, but why assume that no other form of existence is possible? Why assume that this physical world is everything?

There is nothing self-contradictory in the concept of a nonphysical reality. It's hard to conceive clearly, though, because our minds are attuned to physical existence.

Spinoza thought that there is an infinite amount of attributes of God beyond matter and mind.
 
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Doubletap

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Define "God".
Don't say what he/she/it isn't-say what he/she/it IS.
 

theword

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Existence exists: you cannot go outside it; you cannot get under it, on top of it, or behind it. Existence exists - and only existence exists: There is nowhere else to go.
That's at best an awkward expression. Existence does not "exist". THINGS, PEOPLE and their properties exist, and that's all. Existence as such is an abstraction, it is a concept of the mind, we don't literally perceive something called "existence" in the world. We perceive things which exist and we sometimes dream of things which don't exist, but that's all.
Think of existence as the sum of all things that are tangible; anything that has no energy, force or matter would be "nothing."

Now, imagine me saying "go 10 miles north of the north pole."

That would have the same basic coordinates as if I had said to you - "go out into the nothing and hang a left." Nothing is not a place, it's nothing.


Ergo, you cannot create something from nothing.
When a computer programmer takes his invisible thoughts ( which can't be seen by anyone ) and uses 0's and 1's in a binary code to convert his invisible thoughts through a computer processor to give us a way to see those thoughts in action, all we're seeing are illusions that come from nothing but invisible thoughts.

The invisible illusion called a retina is like an invisible illusion called a computer monitor to view invisible processed thoughts that were processed through an invisible illusion called a computer processor. Everything we see are only illusions within the mind of our Creator from His thoughts that have no mass, space or time. The illusions make us believe there are things such as mass, space and time.
 

hobelim

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Define "God".
Don't say what he/she/it isn't-say what he/she/it IS.
God is invisible where all invisible thoughts come from. We are His thoughts.


If that was true then God has one hell of a messed up up sense of humor.


the truth is that people are a product of their own thoughts whether good or evil, sane or insane.


"For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts." Isaiah 55:9




"Our Savior. Two thieves. One is supposed to have been saved and the other . . . (he searches for the contrary of saved) . . . damned.

Saved from what?

We are all born mad. Some remain so."

Samuel Beckett ,Waiting for Godot
 
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GrosMinet

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Define "God".
Don't say what he/she/it isn't-say what he/she/it IS.
Some theologians would tell you that it's impossible to "define" God because God is a unique being whereas things that can be defined belong to wider classes of beings.

It's like being asked to define Shakespeare. What would define him in his very individuality? We may describe him, his work, his thoughts, but we will always fall short of encompassing his very "Shakespeare-Hood" with our general concepts.

At any rate, here are some attributes of the theistic God which are usually agreed upon :

1) The Creator of all that is not him.

2) Almighty or at any rate far more powerful than any created being.

3) Morally perfect.

4) All-knowing.

5) Eternal and self-existent

6) Revelatory (though Deists would dispute that).

7) Involved in human affairs, though discreetly.

8) He leaves people some room for freedom, including the freedom to reject him, because he doesn't want to be loved by slaves or robots.

9) He is beyond genders though for convenience's sake we refer to him as a "he".

10) Not physical, though the stuff he is actually made up of is left unclear.
 

hobelim

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Define "God".
Don't say what he/she/it isn't-say what he/she/it IS.
Some theologians would tell you that it's impossible to "define" God because God is a unique being whereas things that can be defined belong to wider classes of beings.

It's like being asked to define Shakespeare. What would define him in his very individuality? We may describe him, his work, his thoughts, but we will always fall short of encompassing his very "Shakespeare-Hood" with our general concepts. .


It is for this reason that it is forbidden to make images of any kind for use in worship of God because any and every material representation of God that is made by human hands cannot accurately represent God and as a consequence is false.
 
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