Skip to comments.Is GOD In The 'Multi-verse'?
Posted on 10/23/2011 4:30:28 PM PDT by freejohn
I hope that it's okay to post this in the Religion forum!?
I have been thinking about this for quite some time now and have come to my own conclusion and that is .. GOD HAS TO EXIST and not only does he exist .. He is the main argument Against the now popular 'Multi-verse' scenario!
Scientists from many different areas are pondering an infinite number of universes to explain our existence.
They talk about 'string theories' and 'infinite universes' where anything and everything can and does exist!
An example may be that in one universe, I am alive but in another I never was.
In one universe, I am a doctor while in others I may be a lawyer or an Indian Chief while in THIS one .. I'm just another 'smuck'! *)
IF the multi-verse theory were correct then GOD would HAVE to exist simply because 'Scientists' say ALL things MUST take place in 'Infinite Universes'!
Now .. Wouldn't it make sense that if GOD were to exist in even one of these universes then NONE of the rest of those universes could or would exist!?
GOD is a GOD of ORDER and Not a GOD of DISORDER so-o-o .. HOW could such a chaotic universe or in this case Chaotic Universes exist!?
I believe that Science has backed itself into a hole on this one!
(or maybe just created another paradox?)
What do you think?
If you were able to get beyond the multi-use of the word 'exist' in my ramblings .. I would Really like you Scientific and Religious thinkers input on this! 8)
I think you are onto it though. In our universe, ~73% of it's entirety is Dark Energy, ~23% is Dark Matter and 4% is the "stuff" that we can see, stars, galaxies etc. Scientists do not understand exactly what composes dark energy or dark matter.
But atheists like Lawrence Krauss will tell you with a straight face (on youtube) that the universe was created from a quantum fluctuation and required no god. Even though they cant explain 96% of the universe...they "know" that.
So you agree that the multiverse theory is false.
Nice try ...
If you review my comments in this thread, I most carefully neglected to comment upon the so-called ‘Multi-verse theory’ and restricted myself to ONLY the flawed arguments y’all were tossing around.
I am a retired engineer with considerable expertise in Computer Systems design and implementation. I can discuss many topics in my field with assurance that I am competent and well enough informed in both the underlying technology and methods for applying that technology. On such topics, I am happy to assert opinions, armed with the knowledge that what I know and how I express myself are correct and proceed from demonstrated competence.
I have SOME exposure to the topic y’all have been batting about here, enough to recognize the vast distance between what you THINK you know and what you actually don’t know, at all.
To begin with, your ‘argument’ presupposes many things which simply aren’t ‘true’. There is NO ‘Multi-verse theory’, as you describe it. There ARE a number of conjectures and models describing the nature of ‘reality’ and the natural history of the Universe which attempt to incorporate features like ‘infinity’, the interaction of matter and various forces, the nature of time and so forth.
None of these are ‘theories’. A ‘theory’, in correct usage, has certain characteristics or it is merely a shambles. A theory, to be useful, MUST incorporate everything about the topic it addresses that we already KNOW to be true — demonstrated, repeatable according to known methods and / or principles and, arguably, self-consistent.
This structure has two further characteristics without which it is useless and pointless to pursue. It MUST make predictions that are unambiguous and can be verified. It MUST also be ‘falsifiable’ — in other words, if any part of it can be demonstrated to fail, as advertised, or if any measurement or demonstration required by it’s predictions fail to match up, we deem the ‘theory’ to have ‘failed’ or been disproven.
It general, a ‘theory’ CAN fail or be proven / demonstrated to be inadequate. A ‘theory’ CANNOT be deemed ‘true’ or ‘false’. It can only serve as a stepping stone to further ‘theorizing’ and the attempt to acquire more knowledge or a greater understanding within the limited scope to which it applies.
Some ‘theories’ are small in scope and more easily demonstrated to be useful. Other ‘theories’ are so grand in scope that they exceed our present ability to construct or conduct meaningful observations or demonstrations. Until our knowledge or capabilities expand to encompass them, they must remain ‘conjectures’ — speculation, guesses, unrealized possibilities.
Simply put, a ‘theory’ is NOT something you can loosely throw out in conversation and demand agreement — is it ‘true’ or is it ‘false’.
As you seem to use it, the ‘Multi-verse’ addresses the notion that a single Universe is insufficient to contain all the possible components, events, information and whatever other ‘stuff’ CAN POSSIBLY exist. This assumes that every possible event or outcome of the interaction of all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever MUST somehow be permitted to occur, somehow, someplace, sometime.
The argument proceeds by ‘somehow’ replicating a single Universe which already encompasses everything that exists into multiple similar Universes also containing everything that already exists but subtly different due to the observation that something that existed or occurred in one somehow doesn’t exist or occur in the same state in another. Expand the scope of this an infinite number of times and you obtain an infinite number Universes in an infinite number of configurations.
And, oh, by the way, NONE of these infinite Universe have ANY contact, overlap or whatever with ANY of the others. You cannot observe ANYTHING that happens outside of your particular Universe. It’s as though none of the other Universes actually even exist, for all you can observe. You cannot observe or demonstrate whether or not there is ANYTHING outside of the Universe you happen to occupy.
The ‘Multi-verse’ thus attempts to describe a condition that is, by it’s own definition, unknowable, unmeasurable, intangible and beyond the scope of any conceivable method of observation or demonstration. Therefore, we CANNOT test any feature of existence accessible to us to determine whether or not this class of conjectures ‘means’ anything. We cannot use it to make any predictions; we cannot test these non-existent predictions in an attempt to ‘falsify’ them; we cannot ‘do’ or ‘conclude’ ANYTHING meaningful about this conjecture.
Do I think it’s ‘false’ ? I think it’s meaningless to invest any effort or energy into this concept until or unless you have anything more to offer than free-floating speculation and a massive overdose of wish-fulfillment.
One Man’s Opinion
It's not a meaningful question. You can ask why is there anything at all, whether god is in the mix or not. And having god in there doesn't answer the question because you can still ask, why is there god?
"Now .. Wouldn't it make sense that if GOD were to exist in even one of these universes then NONE of the rest of those universes could or would exist!?"
No, that doesn't make sense. There's no paradox. Your premise is that every possible universe exists. That would therefore include a god in some of those universes. But your conclusion is that a gods in any number of the individual universes somehow equates to a single god of the multiverse. You've mixed up in your head the parent multiverse and children universes.
If something arises within a child universe because all possible child universes must exists, that something exists inside that child universe only.
You saying it is not meaningful does not make the question inconsequential. Before the universe began....before there was anyting.....something happened to bring forth everything from nothing. What conditions changed? What changed? It seems the only viable answer is that there was a personal decision. That person was timeless, immaterial, supremely powerful to bring forth everything from nothing. That is what inductive reasoning will conclude, it seems to me.
The question stands, 'If God does not exist (to make that decision) why is there anything at all?"
You ignoring the logic of my post does not make it go away. :-)
The logic doesn't rest on my say so. You can say god was the cause, but what caused god? You haven't gotten to an answer yet, you've only pushed it back an extra step.
"It seems the only viable answer is that there was a personal decision."
You have no idea what all the viable answers are. It's the height of arrogance to claim that if you can't think of an answer to a question that an answer can't exist.
Again, inserting "god" into the "why does anything exist" question achieves nothing to answer the question, because the question equally applies to god.
In fact to deny the Law of Causality is to deny rationality. The very process of rational thinking requires us to put together thoughts (the causes) that result in conclusions (the effects). The Law of Causality is well established and undeniable. So, we ask, "Did the universe begin?" From science, we have 5 lines of evidences which remove essential all doubt that the universe began. I won't go over those again but to enumerate: (1)General Theory of Relativity, (2)Eddington's findings confirming Einsteins theory, (3)(Hubble's findings of the red shift showing the epanding universe, (4) Wilson and Penzias findings o cosmic background radiation a(the echo of the original big bang) (5)The findings of COBE and Smoots WMAP. There are many other logical 'proofs' of a beginning from the Kalam argument, the ontological argument, the epistemological argument, the metaphsical arguement, and many, more. I won't bother you with these other logical arguments for First Cause....just the scientific explainations.
So, since the universe had a beginning (science tells us) it had to have a beginner (a Cause). So in light of all of the evidence of a beginning for the space-time universe, indicating the moment prior to the beginning the beginner must have been 'outside' of that universe which had not yet begun to exist. Here is where you come in with your question....'if the universe had to have a beginning, then what caused God?' Here is where the atheist derisively states , what caused God? They fail to understand Law of Causality....Whatever comes to be has to have a cause. Theist, of all stripes, never affirm that God came to be. He is eternal. He transends time/space/energy/matter. Remember, as Alamo-girl often says, "In the absence of space matter cannot exist. In the absence of time events cannnot take place." So as an atheist you might say, "Wait, if you can have an eternal God, I can have an eternal universe." The problem with that argument is while it may seem logically that the universe could be eternal, in reality we have given you multiple lines of scientific evidence that it is not eternal...it actually had a beginning. So, by ruling out an eternal universe, we are left with that other option which atheist find distastful...Something outside the is eternal (remember time began at the Big Bang). So, to reitterate, the universe had a beginning, so it was caused by something else - by something outside itself, according to science.
Now we take a further steps and ask what is this First Cause like? We can discover the nature of First Cause by what scientific findings tell us.
It must be self-existent, timeless (eternal) nonspacial (not extending into space), immaterial (since First Cause created time, space, and matter (in other words limitless), unimaginable powerful, to create the entire universe out of nothing, supremely intelligent with such precision (remember the Law of Uniformity despite the second Law of thermodynamics), and personal, in order to choose to convert nothingess into a time-space-matter continuum we call the Universe.
These are characteristics of First Cause, and they are exactly thecharacteristics theists ascribe to God. Again, I did not derive them from any theist, but from Einstein, Eddington, Hoyl, Wilson and Penzias, Smoot COBE, WMAP.
So when you so derisively denounce Leibnez question, I will repeat it and ask you to answer it....If God does not exist, why is there something rather than nothing?
As a sidebar, I would ask you if you are a materialist, darwinist, physicalist, naturalist in your worldview?
You’re saying the multiple universe idea is not falsifiable empirically—in an a posteriori fashion—therefore we cannot really discuss it in a meaningful way. But the empirical is not all inclusive.
I’m saying the idea is falsifiable logically—that is, in an a priori sense. This sort of context is epistemologically valid, thus meaningful. Logic is the greater scope—logic encompasses empiricism. Not the other way around.
As for nature of the multiple universe idea, we should look at its origin. There are strong indications that it arose in the form of a psychologically motivated response by secular/atheist scientists to the discovery of physical evidence establishing the truth of the Big Bang. The Big Bang was a major refutation of the conventional view of many scientists who were educated during the first half of the 20th century. They tended to hold the belief that the universe had no beginning.
But the fact that the universe had a beginning makes it extremely difficult if not impossible to deny that it had a cause. This leads to the likelihood of intelligent design, an idea which is a major source of fear for secular scientists whose identities and sense of pride has been founded on the belief in a Godless, randomly based universe.
All I can say is ... Wow !!!
It is impossible for me to imagine having a ‘meeting of the minds’ with someone who is willing and able to publish such gobbledy-gook and EXPECT to be taken seriously.
You must get really dizzy spinning yourself around in circles like that all the time.
I tried — I Really TRIED — to translate enough of what you just published into a sensible form that might be refutable. However, I confess I have failed. We do not appear to share enough common ground to support further discussion — it would appear to be pointless.
At this point, I’ve lost all interest in trying to respond, so ... Buh ‘Bye !!!
21stCenturion, you cite Anselm of Cantebury and Thomas Aquinas both saints and doctors of the Roman Catholic Church of providing prime examples of the fallacy of Begging the Question/Circular Reasoning. I have some doubt, however, that you understand what these two world-class thinkers were saying.
Moreoever, there is a fallacy that you may not have heard of the Fallacy of Misplaced Concreteness, so ably described by the great mathematician and philosopher A. N. Whitehead but it seems to me that you have committed it; and that it may be "corrupting" your thinking.
The tip-off comes in your remark, "GOD must exist somewhere within such an infinity of Universes." No He mustn't no more than Michelangelo "must exist" in the Sistine Chapel, or in his magnificent sculpture, David.
The Fallacy of Misplaced Concreteness which embroils you is your supposition that God "exists" as yet another existing entity within the universe we humans live in or within some other multiverse.
Yet when Anselm calls Him "Perfect," this must mean that God does not "exist!" Rather, it is an acknowledgement that He is pure, absolute, eternally self-subsistent Being and, that being the case, He is utterly perfect (in that He needs nothing from outside of Himself to Be what He IS).
God is not "IN" anything He made in the Beginning including Space and Time (they are His creations too).
All existing things are finite and contingent. Man is finite; his life contingent on what happens around him and to him. The Fallacy you commit is to reduce God to what He is not i.e., to just another existing thing within the Creation. A sort of superhuman after Feuerbach's "projection psychology," wherein the deity is thought to be nothing more than the fanciful projection of the highest desires and aspirations of mankind nothing "real" in Himself, just an elaborate fiction designed to ease human existential anxieties.
Yet even the great classical philosophers (around 500400 B.C.), pre-Christian though they may have been, drew the distinction between being and existence. They believed that all existent things were so because they were participations in divine Being. Because God IS, we are. Plato's God was a God utterly "Beyond" the Cosmos. As pure eternal Being, the source and sustainer of life, He could not be yet another denizen of the world of His making, the place designated for finite, mortal, contingent creatures to come into existence, and then to pass out of it in due course.
Moreover, the Greek word Kosmos refers to a single integrated, ordered system and the order is there because of the divine Intelligence and Will that causes the world to be as it is, and not some other way; and to be something in the first place, and not nothing at all.... (Which answers Leibniz's two crucial questions.)
Materialism/scientism absolutely rejects a creator God in principle, preferring to believe the unbelievable to wit, that the random motions of matter somehow have a "principle" conducive to the elaboration of ordered systems in Nature, including the principal ordered system of which they are parts and participants the universe/multiverse itself.
It doesn't matter to me all that much whether there is one universe, of whether there may be many (multiverses). If they began in time, something had to kick-start their ordered processes.
And if they didn't have a beginning in time, then their existence is inexplicable.
This was the point Aquinas was making: you wrote
In the Universe, all things that exist are the product of other things that already existed. This progression cannot continue infinitely as there must be SOMETHING that existed as the first producer of whatever came next. This first producer ( first cause ) we have all agreed to call God. Do you see the fallacy operating here ?No, I don't see the fallacy; I see logic at work. This is straight out of Aristotle, who reasoned that if there were not a "first cause," a/k/a an "unmoved mover," then the universe would have had to arise by virtue of an infinite regression of causes. But if that were so, then no particular thing could come into existence for lack of an organizing principle, a Limit (peras) which is just another way of saying that purely random processes in nature are productive of nothing in particular, nor can they be.
Plus you can yell about random processes till kingdom come, and still not explain where the matter subject to such randomness came from....
And so if people have "agreed" to call this first principle God, I do not see how circular reasoning is at all involved. You could call this first principle "dandelion" if you wanted to "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." The logic of First Cause would not be disturbed at all, whatever you choose to name it.
Of course, we Christians are very glad to call it: God.
In closing, here's what Anselm wrote in Monologion 1:
If anyone does not know, either because he has not heard or because he does not believe, that there is one nature, supreme among all existing things, who alone is self-sufficient in his eternal happiness, who through his omnipotent goodness grants and brings it about that all other things exist or have any sort of well-being, and a great many other things that we must believe about God or his creation, I think he could at least convince himself of most of these things by reason alone, if he is even moderately intelligent.Notice that Anselm nowhere in this passage says that God "exists." Rather he is saying that God is the very cause and ground of everything that does exist. Anselm does not conflate being and existence; he does not reduce perfect being to finite contingent existence and thus he, unlike you, does not commit the Fallacy of Misplaced concreteness!
Notice he also says that man's knowledge of God comes via reason, intelligence. It must be that way, since God Himself is not a direct observable the sort of thing required by the scientific method.
God is seen, not directly via sense perception, but in His effects.
I'll leave you with that clue, 21stCenturion.
Thank you so much for writing!
IF the multi-verse theory were correct then UNICORNS, HOBBITS, and LEPRECHAUNS would HAVE to exist simply because 'Scientists' say ALL things MUST take place in 'Infinite Universes'!
IF the multi-verse theory were correct then GOD would HAVE to exist simply because 'Scientists' say ALL things MUST take place in 'Infinite Universes'!
Assuming you're right, would He be God in all the universes or just in one or two?
In other words would He be what believers usually mean by "God" -- omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent?
Betty, you had so much fun picking my comments apart, I almost hate to rain on your parade. But ...
In both instances where you ‘quoted’ ME, as though the ideas expressed were my own thoughts or beliefs, you were dead wrong.
The tip-off comes in your remark, “GOD must exist somewhere within such an infinity of Universes.” No He mustn’t no more than Michelangelo “must exist” in the Sistine Chapel, or in his magnificent sculpture, David.
This was the point Aquinas was making: you wrote
In the Universe, all things that exist are the product of other things that already existed. This progression cannot continue infinitely as there must be SOMETHING that existed as the first producer of whatever came next. This first producer ( first cause ) we have all agreed to call God. Do you see the fallacy operating here ?
No, I don’t see the fallacy; I see logic at work.
In both instances, I was clearly paraphrasing or summarizing someone else’s ideas or arguments. In effect, you are arguing with the other guy( s) and leaving me out entirely.
In general, your entire response was an exercise in either willful or inadvertent misdirection. You were responding to what someone ELSE thought, which I quoted for reference, NOT to what I thought and clearly presented as my own thoughts, separately.
If you’re going to conduct a reasoned argument to somehow counter mine, please try to do a better job of construction and attribution. I don’t believe you actually addressed what I said and thus I don’t have any basis to respond other than as I just did.
Care to try again ? I AM still listening ...
What part of what you wrote is your own thought? Where did you present your thoughts elsewhere, "separately?"
Do you normally cite authorities whose arguments run counter to your own? I got the distinct impression that you were citing those with whom you agree that's why you cited them. As corroborating evidence, a it were.
We can correct all this just tell me what YOU think, and then we can take it from there! (Or refer me to the clear presentation which clearly I must have missed.)
Thanks for your reply, 21stCenturion!
The post you call “gobbledy-gook” is clear, straightforward and logical.
You are unable to show which part deserves your name-calling, because none does.
Every time you reply to me, your post is emotional with personal attacks. I challenge you to remove this kind of gobbledy-gook from your thought process, and have a logical discussion.
For starters, do you understand what is meant when I say that empiricism comes under the umbrella of logic, and not vice-versa?
In #34, the references to St. Anselmo and Aquinas were provided as examples of ‘Begging the Question’. I don’t accept or agree with either argument nor did I even ‘imply’ agreement.
In #102, “There is NO ‘Multi-Universe theory’ ... “ is, in fact, my own thought. The subsequent discussion of what a ‘theory’ is or is not constitutes my argument in defense of that assertion.
All the discussion beginning with
“As you seem to use it, the Multi-verse addresses the notion that a single Universe is insufficient to contain all the possible components, events, information and whatever other stuff CAN POSSIBLY exist.”
through the end of @102 is the substance of my own ‘take’ on the so-called ‘Multi-universe’ conjecture.
The rest of my prolix discourse addresses the form of the arguments presented by the various folk I was addressing.
WRT “Do you normally cite authorities whose arguments run counter to your own?”, in each case I was pointing out that the arguments cited were fallacious. I thought I was rather unambiguous about that. Since when is citing someone you disagree with, in order to present the disagreement, somehow a defect in presenting an argument ?
In fact, you got it backwards — I was citing ‘em BECAUSE I disagreed. It doesn’t seem fair to leave out the substance of the argument I am disputing, now does it ?
BTW: I am quite familiar with Whitehead’s concept of ‘reification’. I don’t quite see how it applies to anything I’ve said, ‘though. As you should realize by now, nothing I said argues for or against the existence of God in ANY Universe, let alone some mythical ‘Multi-verse’. I never went there, even by implication. I was addressing the form of the arguments others indulged in, NOT the underlying ‘theology’.
Does this provide sufficient clarity ?
Look, it’s really quite simple. I think the ‘Multi-verse’ conjecture is a bogus exercise as there is NO basis for proliferating ‘Universes’ in order to overcome a purely human inability to comprehend the concept of ‘infinity’. Referring back to @102,
... the Multi-verse addresses the notion that a single Universe is insufficient to contain all the possible components, events, information and whatever other stuff CAN POSSIBLY exist. This assumes that every possible event or outcome of the interaction of all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever MUST somehow be permitted to occur, somehow, someplace, sometime.
I can’t state my position any more succinctly without ‘losing’ the essence of what I mean to say.
As to YOUR assertion that ‘God is NOT within the Multi-verse’ ( or apparently anywhere else ), I suppose your supporting arguments might be interesting at SOME level but ... BIG But ... You lost me when you stated —
“Notice he also says that man’s knowledge of God comes via reason, intelligence. It must be that way, since God Himself is not a direct observable the sort of thing required by the scientific method.”
Man’s ‘knowledge of God’ is merely the product of faith and the belief in some supernatural power that operates outside the realm of reason or the scope of man’s intelligence. That is NOT ‘knowledge’, that is the denial that ‘knowledge’ is possible.
I am often appalled to see how many different forms Man’s ‘Knowledge of God’ takes, depending on who is telling the story and what agenda they appear to be serving. Personally, I tend to sympathize with the adage ‘Man creates Gods to serve him’. It seems to cover the history of theological thought since prehistoric times quite adequately ...
One Man’s Opinion
OKay, sport, you ASKED for it.
“Youre saying the multiple universe idea is not falsifiable empiricallyin an a posteriori fashiontherefore we cannot really discuss it in a meaningful way. But the empirical is not all inclusive.”
I never SAID that or anything like it. You seem to have invented it out of whole cloth. But, that’s okay, I saw you palm that card. What I DID say was that
“The Multi-verse thus attempts to describe a condition that is, by its own definition, unknowable, unmeasurable, intangible and beyond the scope of any conceivable method of observation or demonstration. Therefore, we CANNOT test any feature of existence accessible to us to determine whether or not this class of conjectures means anything. We cannot use it to make any predictions; we cannot test these non-existent predictions in an attempt to falsify them; we cannot do or conclude ANYTHING meaningful about this conjecture.”
a priori, you cannot presume to know, without ANY observation, that ANY Universe exists outside of the one in which we are now present and having this lovely conversation. If you can’t observe ANY Universe outside of our own, a posteriori, you cannot demonstrate ANYTHING meaningful about it. THAT is what I said.
You go on to state —
“Im saying the idea is falsifiable logicallythat is, in an a priori sense. This sort of context is epistemologically valid, thus meaningful. Logic is the greater scopelogic encompasses empiricism. Not the other way around.”
You don’t seem to grasp what is meant by ‘falsifiable’ within the context of the so-call Scientific Method. It doesn’t mean I can simply ‘deny’ something. A sound theory makes specific predictions. If ANY of them turn out to be ‘false’ / ‘inaccurate’, the theory is deemed to have ‘failed’. It is the process of demonstrating the ‘truth’ of those specific predictions that constitutes ‘falsification’. There is NO ‘logical argument’ that substitutes for demonstrating unambiguously and repeatably that a given prediction holds up.
It is NOT ‘epistemologically valid’ to attempt to argue the merits of a theory WITHOUT demonstrating unambiguously and repeatably whether any or all of it’s predictions hold up. This is NOT ‘empiricism’. This is the nature and definition of the Scientific Method.
You go on to state
“But the empirical is not all inclusive ... Logic is the greater scope logic encompasses empiricism. Not the other way around.”
This is one statement I have no problem labeling Gobbledy-gook. Semantically, I can’t quite decipher what you think you’re saying. ‘Logic’ ( a method of constructing meaningful arguments ) is ‘the greater scope’ because it ‘encompasses empiricism’ ( the argument that all knowledge is derived from the evidence of our senses or our experiences ) ??? Apples and oranges ...
You then come in for a landing with
“But the fact that the universe had a beginning makes it extremely difficult if not impossible to deny that it had a cause. This leads to the likelihood of intelligent design, an idea which is a major source of fear for secular scientists whose identities and sense of pride has been founded on the belief in a Godless, randomly based universe.”
In engineering ( my field of expertise ) we work hard to distinguish between ‘cause’ and ‘correlation’. Just because ‘a’ precedes ‘b’ does not ‘prove’ that ‘a’ CAUSED ‘b’. There well may BE some element of ‘design’ in the way the Universe is constructed and behaves, but I don’t concede that your point of view or favored explanation has any more validity than anyone else’s. And I have a lot more confidence in MY epistomological methods than I can imagine having in your gobbledy-gook arguments.
Now, in view of
“The post you call gobbledy-gook is clear, straightforward and logical.
You are unable to show which part deserves your name-calling, because none does.”
I am content to think you published ‘gobbledy-gook’; that it was NOT ‘clear, straightforward and logical’; and that I have demonstrated a valid basis for that contentment.
One Man’s Opinion
Aw come on, 21stCenturion, do you mean to suggest that you do have the ability to "comprehend the concept of 'infinity'?" On the possibility that you might so comprehend (though that certainly seems doubtful to me), I suspect "infinity" in your sense would just be a stand-in for God.
... the Multi-verse addresses the notion that a single Universe is insufficient to contain all the possible components, events, information and whatever other stuff CAN POSSIBLY exist. This assumes that every possible event or outcome of the interaction of all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever MUST somehow be permitted to occur, somehow, someplace, sometime.Just who is it that (seemingly) claims to know future events (at least in general if not in each and every particular) and all the details of what is needed "all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever" because they "...MUST somehow be permitted to occur, somehow, someplace, sometime."
That person evidently has a most exalted, God-like view of things. Kinda reminds me of Laplace....
Tell me, why MUST "all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever" be "instantiated?" According to what rule, what purpose? Just because this cite of yours (with whom you state you disagree) insists that they should i.e., insists that all possibilities eventually must manifest themselves, given enough time?
But of course, infinity doesn't really have so much to do with time as it does with number. It is a mathematical concept; and some physicists have complained that it is "unconstructible" in natural science.
I think what your cite may have in mind is "endless time." If time is endless, then anything that can happen, will happen. And the pièce de résistence is that if time is endless, then randomness might (in all probability) have a chance to "accidentally organize" itself into something actual. This is the thousand-monkeys-with-typewriters-shut-up-in-a-room-trying-to-compose-Shakespeare scenario.
Of course you don't need multiple universes to explain the manifold of the Universe. If there are other "universes," they would be embodied, integrated in some fashion into the ONE, indivisible Universe, the living Universe of God's Logos in the Beginning. JMHO.
Mans knowledge of God is merely the product of faith and the belief in some supernatural power that operates outside the realm of reason or the scope of mans intelligence. That is NOT knowledge, that is the denial that knowledge is possible.God is not "supernatural": He is not any kind of "natural." He is absolutely irreducible to your "measurements." He most definitely IS outside the realm of reason, and definitely beyond the scope of man's intelligence, individual, collective, historical.
As Saint Anselm said (in Proslogion):
O Lord, you are not only that than which a greater cannot be conceived, but you are also greater than what can be conceived.Anselm is thinking and reasoning along a line that perhaps you don't suspect exists:
Speak to my desirous soul what you are, other than what it has seen, that it may clearly see what it desires.For Anselm, the fides quarens intellectum the quest of faith seeking understanding, knowledge is not essentially epistemic; it is volitional. Anselm is drawn by the Love of God, which he fervently and ever faithfully returns.
In the end, I gather we disagree about this: You believe that faith and reason are mutually exclusive; I do not.
Rather I believe they are necessary complementarities. Truthful human knowledge requires the light of both.
But it's late, 21stCenturion, and I've run on long. It's time to say good night and sleep tight!
Since the 1960s forward measurements of the cosmic microwave background radiation consistently agree that the universe is expanding. This means that space and time do not pre-exist but are created as the universe expands. It also means there was a beginning of real space and real time.
That was the most theological statement to ever come out of modern science (Jastrow) In the beginning, God created (Gen 1:1)
There is no infinite past. Steady state cosmology is dead as a doornail.
So of course physical cosmologists went into high gear trying to obviate God the Creator evidently because methodological naturalism cannot allow for Creator God.
But none of the theories cyclic, ekpyrotic, multi-verse, multi-world, imaginary time, etc. can avoid the problem that space and time do not pre-exist.
In the absence of time, events cannot occur.
Both are required for physical causation.
Also, the singularity of big bang cosmology is not nothing:
It is not nothing. It is a spatial point. A singularity is not nothing.
In ex nihilo Creation (beginning of space/time) - the dimensions are not merely zero, they are null, dimensions do not exist at all. There is no space and no time. Period.
There is no mathematical point, no volume, no content, no scalar quantities. Ex nihilo doesnt exist in relationship to anything else; there is no thing.
In an existing physical space, each point (e.g. particle) can be parameterized by a quantity such as mass. The parameter (e.g. a specific quantity within the range of possible quantities) is in effect another descriptor or quasi-dimension that uniquely identifies the point within the space.
Moreover, if the quantity of the parameter changes for a point, then a time dimension is invoked. For example, at one moment the point value is 0 and the next it is 1.
Wave propagation (e.g. big bang, inflation) cannot occur in null dimensions nor can it occur in zero spatial dimensions, a mathematical point; a dimension of time is required for any fluctuation in a parameter value at a point.
Moreover, wave propagation must also have a spatial/temporal relation from cause point to effect point, i.e. physical causation.
For instance 0 at point nt causes 1 at point n+1t+1 which causes "0" at point n+1t+2 etc..
Obviously, physical wave propagation (e.g. big bang/inflationary model) cannot precede space/time and physical causality.
And he realizes that only God, beyond space/time and physical causation, can be the uncaused cause of causation, the first cause, The Creator of the beginning.
Space, time and physical causation are not properties of God the Creator. They are properties of the Creation. Only God is uncaused.
Order cannot arise from chaos in an unguided physical system. Period. There are always guides to the system whether one is using chaos theory, self-organizing complexity, cellular automata or whatever to analyze complexification, entropy and order.
Indeed, to me, the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics (Wigner) is Gods copyright notice on the cosmos.
Logos is the Greek word which is translated Word in the following passage. It is also the root for the word Logic:
At the moment of first expression of dimension Time, it was volumetric. When linked to dimension Space is when dimension Time took on variable expressions, and linked to Time, Space took on variable expressions, thus the Universe God created came to be and express the variables in combinatorics. That I think of it all that way is probably why I like Dr. Schroeder’s explanation for the Age of the Universe since God Created ‘it’.
Oh, it is more than mere encouragement. I am in awe ...
My dear sisters in Christ, Betty and Alamo, I am blessed by your discussions. BB, your first response to 21st connects with where I am going with my sermon for this week, so I fastened onto it. The theme is from James 1 in which poor and rich are encouraged to acknowledge the fragility of their own existence...their morality. Instead, we are to focus on being “rich in the Lord.”
The discussion ranging from Anselm to Plato does that for me, but I especially liked the “concreteness” argument you made, that Michelangeo is not somehow imprisoned in the Sistine Chapel. It’s connection to the theme of the sermon is irrelevant to your discussion, but I do appreciate the tie-in you provided, that God is simply “outside” those things. They would not and could not move Him at all. So insignificant is gold, for example, that the streets of heaven use it for mere paving stones, and so insignificant are precious stones, that they are walls and foundations in the heavenly city.
21st century, just a bit of an encouragement that is off topic, as well. HTML. The lines you draw on the page really don’t present your arguments very well. You would do well to use italics, blockquoting, lists, etc. to set off your arguments as opposed to those you quote.
When I read your statement that readers simply weren’t understanding what was you and what wasn’t, without backtracking to your original posts and relying on these recent ones, I knew a big part of the problem could have been formatting.
Clarity in formatting is such a huge aid for those of us reading anything said by another. Perhaps you have all these html skills already and just avoided them because you were in a rush. That’s fine.
The bottom line, though, is that clarity is the responsibility of the message sender and not that of the receiver.
acknowledge the fragility of their own existence...their
For me the most fascinating theories in Geometric Physics posit that there are additional dimensions of time (e.g. Vafa's f-theory and Wesson's 5D2T). The expanded dimension theories are more elegant than the compactification theories based on Kaluza/Klein (i.e. string theories) and simplify the challenges of such things as non-locality at a distance and superposition.
Many scientists become quite unsettled over such theories because as a volume instead a line (an arrow of time) - past, present and future are concurrent. And that of course suggests that cause>effect could also be effect>cause, etc.
But to a Christian that could make perfect sense:
According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: - Ephesians 1:4
God's Name is I AM.
And I join you in appreciating betty boop's illuminating insights! Truly, I cannot thank her well enough for all of them for she seems to ever have the forest in view while I am engrossed with a single leaf.
The Fallacy of Misplaced Concreteness sheds light on many of my leaves.
Indeed it brings to mind Max Tegmark's Level IV Parallel Universe model which posits that everything we observe "in" space/time is actually a manifestation of mathematical structures which really do exist outside of space and time. Or to put it another way, what an observer "in" space/time perceives as real is actually a manifestation of reality which is not subject to space, time, energy-momentum, etc.
Of course the Physicist must not under the principle of methodological naturalism allow God the Creator to be mentioned in his theory. But to a Christian it is obvious:
I wrote —
I think the Multi-verse conjecture is a bogus exercise as there is NO basis for proliferating Universes in order to overcome a purely human inability to comprehend the concept of infinity.
You replied —
Aw come on, 21stCenturion, do you mean to suggest that you do have the ability to “comprehend the concept of ‘infinity’?” On the possibility that you might so comprehend (though that certainly seems doubtful to me), I suspect “infinity” in your sense would just be a stand-in for God.
Seems I didn’t actually say anything that resembles your conclusions. I DO comprehend the definition of ‘infinity’ — that is no great accomplishment, I think. Whether I can, in my limited mind, grasp the significance or meaning of an expression like ‘an infinite number of Universes’ is questionable. I did NOT assert possession of such an insight.
Further, ‘infinity’ in ‘my’ sense has to do with an exercise in counting, nothing more. Nowhere did I imply some being / existence / personality / whatever that could reasonably be construed as ‘God’. That presumption originates with you.
You wrote —
Just who is it that (seemingly) claims to know future events (at least in general if not in each and every particular) and all the details of what is needed “all possible combinations of matter, energy or whatever” because they “...MUST somehow be permitted to occur, somehow, someplace, sometime.”
That person evidently has a most exalted, God-like view of things. Kinda reminds me of Laplace....
Laplace ? I assume you refer to “Je n’avais pas besoin de cette hypothèse-là” ( I did not need this hypothesis then ) ? I never went there, except, I suppose, to the extent that I made no appeal to the supernatural at any time to justify or explain myself.
I never asserted ‘an exalted God-like view of things’, as you so cheerfully provided me with. I humbly view myself as a bit too modest to claim such an exalted opinion or myself or my ‘notions’ as stated herein.
You conclude —
In the end, I gather we disagree about this: You believe that faith and reason are mutually exclusive; I do not.
Rather I believe they are necessary complementarities. Truthful human knowledge requires the light of both.
NOT my words, you’ll quickly realize —
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1
For once, you nailed me. I absolutely DO believe that faith and reason are absolutely incompatible — mutually exclusive, to use your terms. To that extent, you’re right, our ‘world views’ ARE ‘mutually incompatible’.
In my chosen profession ( engineering ) we would rightfully condemn someone who filters / modifies / corrupts data in order to fit a predetermined conclusion. It’s certainly NOT honest; it doesn’t change the underlying reality; and the results must, inevitably, produce failure. Passing reality through a lens of ‘faith’ and claiming the results are equivalent to the product of ‘reason’ looks a lot like that.
One Man’s Opinion
You do not grasp my point, friend. Even you are "a man of faith" within the meaning of that term as I understand it. Every scientist or engineer who ever lived and thought is "a man of faith."
The scientist's faith is that the world is intelligible. If the scientist did not believe that, then all his science would be in vain; indeed, there could be no science at all. And the engineer faithfully believes in the complete adequacy of the mechanistic principles of his calling. If he doubted them, he would not be an engineer at all.
It seems to me that all human knowledge rests on faith at its very foundation. That is, without faith there is no spur towards knowledge, no scope for the operations of logic and reason, nothing for intelligence to work on. Without faith in something, there is really nothing at all for a man to do. He might just as well curl up in the fetal position and resign from the human race.
But this rarely happens for the very simple reason that every man believes in something, whether it is true or not. If he didn't, he wouldn't even be a man.
Yet evidently you have been trained to cast a cold eye on belief in God. This seems to pass as quite fashionable nowadays in certain circles.
And yet for countless millennia by now, belief in God has been universal to all mankind everywhere. Doctrinaire atheism is quite a contemporary phenomenon. And I note that where you find it, you find not only contempt for God, but also contempt for mankind in general but especially that part of mankind that believes in God, and particularly the Christians among them.
But back to my opening comment, that every scientist must believe the world is intelligible or there couldn't be any science at all; science per se would be a pointless exercise if the fundamental intelligibility of the world was in doubt.
And yet I know of no scientist, offhand, who asks the question: Why is the world intelligible? What is it that embues it with intelligibility? From whence do its laws arise? And other questions of that kind the answers to which cannot be found within the spacetime reality of ordinary existence and experience, of the direct sensory perception on which the scientific method ineluctably depends.
Science does not ask these questions. Indeed, such questions seem a bit above science's paygrade, given its utter dependence on sensory perception/observation/measurement which is its fundamental, even sacrosanct method.
I might add that there are plenty of "non-observables" of the greatest importance to human beings. Indeed, the ability of man to detect them is a sign of his categorical superiority to the lower animals.
But to not ask such questions doesn't mean the questions disappear. Plus by its own methods, science cannot disprove, or falsify the eternal Presence of God the God Sir Isaac Newton called "The Lord of Life with His Creatures."
I just wish you guys would stop behaving like the Dog in the Manger.... The rule there being what the dog cannot eat himself must be denied to all other creatures for which it is the most suitable and nourishing fare.
Anyhoot, back to my claim that faith and reason are NOT mutually exclusive: If you were to scrupulously, honestly analyze your own thought processes, I think you would find I am right about this.
But hardly any person does that sort of thing nowadays.... Few people understand their own thinking. But then critical thinking is getting to be a lost art it seems.
Thanks so much for your reply, 21stCenturion!
freejohn, you have kicked off a wonderful discussion. Anytime this group of participants engage it is beneficial to us all.
I see this particular argument as a contradiction in terms. What does Uni-verse mean? It means one. Therefore, if we are to consider the whole, then multiple “universes” must themselves exist within an even larger Universe. Once there, to the larger whole, don’t think you have arrived at the end of your journey. God does not exist within that Universe. It exists within God, for God IS existence. Of everything! And more!
It is natural to try to make our beliefs consistent with our knowledge of the external for the key to belief is understanding. When we try to understand God we are going beyond that, going beyond our understanding of “the world.” The door to that understanding is Faith. It is normal to try to make things coherent within what we already know but when it comes to God, forget that. It is a whole new world that you can only understand through experience, but once you experience it the Bible unfolds its mysteries to you.
Once you believe and study God’s message in the Bible, you will see lessons about life you didn’t know were there. You will see the answers to questions which have sold millions of self-help books and made hundreds of authors wealthy simply by explaining what is already explained. They are just explaining them to non Bible readers.
21st Centurion does a wonderful job of explaining the common fault of Begging the Question. That and Hasty Generalization are the two most common errors in thinking. Yet, in this case it is just of ancillary interest. To prove God destroys that which you just proved, so why bother if that is your purpose. To understand God you MUST beg the question, but don’t let that bother you. Logic is of the natural, physical world, man’s world, but God is of the Spiritual world, within which the natural world exists. God is More.
My learned friends have given you much to contemplate. They have explained the natural, scientific reasoning of why God exists. Yet, that is simply explaining God’s existence, not who God is. What does it matter that God exists if we are not going to embrace Him and learn His message? Learning that He exists is just academic. To make it meaningful you need the experience of which I spoke. Can you experience beauty and not feel God? Can you love and not feel God? What about poetry, even sensual pleasure? A delightful aroma? Can science explain that? Sure, scientists can talk about the senses and what senses the sensation, but can they explain the delight, the awe, the reverence, the sadness, the pity, the kindness, etc., which result from those sensations. For that you need something more. I am not saying that you cannot experience those emotions in a secular manner but for a believer they come naturally. For a believer they also evoke a desire to say “Thank you, Lord.” in recognition of the Source. I doubt a secularist feels a need to say, “Thank you, body.” To make God meaningful you must experience Him and His Love and that will lead you to the Truth and Life.
As I said, belief opens up a whole new world. What is the purpose of a static belief that God exists? It is more important that you know God. To know God you must experience God. Faith is the door to that experience and Faith is gained through Grace. Grace is granted following Bible study and prayer. Do it! Nothing else matters. Then, you don’t need these discussions, although they are still fun and helpful. Then, when you encounter evolutionists and non-believers who mock your belief you can just smile, secure in your belief. If you choose to engage them, fine for with the help of these Freepers you will be well armed, but you need not engage them if you don’t want. You will have the Truth. They won’t.
God is not a hypothesis. He lives. His Name is I AM. I've known Him for a half century and counting.
The atheist claim is therefore as absurd to me as someone saying that my brother does not exist simply because he does not know him.
Yes, in fact your claim is that the multiple universe idea is not falsifiable empirically: “unmeasurable, intangible beyond the scope of observation or demonstration...cannot test these predictions.”
This precisely describes the definition of the empirical process—observation, measurement, prediction, demonstration.
Science is dependent on logic (language)—in the absense of logic, science can do as much as—or more probably, far less than—a ship on dry land.
Logic, on the other hand, is independent of empiricism and completely viable without it.
When I said “This leads to the likelihood of intelligent design,” I was not asserting or arguing for the likelihood of intelligent design. Rather, I was explaining that such a likelihood is necessarily a logical possibility once the reality of Big Bang was established through observation in 1965.
Again—the fact that intelligent design is a logical possibility is very intimidating to atheist scientists. But ironically, this is an example of being intimidated by the very thing by which they presume the existence of their own ultimate identity and credibility—the discovery of truth.
Jeepers, dearest sister in Christ, it certainly seems that way at times! Talk about "flatlanders!"
Thank you so very much for your kind words!
Thank you oh so much for your wonderful insights, dear Mind-numbed Robot!
I particularly liked your observation that if we can "prove" the existence of God, then what we are testing wouldn't be God.
It's sort of analogous to the situation in which a biologist is trying to understand what life is. The "scientific" way to go about the problem would be to take a crittur down to its parts, then study them. But if this done, then of course, one is dealing with a non-living crittur "You can't get there from here."
Or as the poet said [Blake]: We murder to dissect.
Life itself is not a direct observable. But one definitely knows when it is absent.
Thank you so very much for your outstanding essay/post!
I, too, would love to be able to hear your sermon!
Thank you, BB. I always enjoy these threads and I appreciate your pinging me to them.
The Jewish mystics use the name Ayn Sof when speaking of God the Creator. Literally it means "no thing." And the point is that any word a person would use to describe God reduces his own concept of God to the word that he used.
Logic for instance is part of the creation, not a property of the Creator.
Thanks for the enlightenment about the Jewish mystics. That, I suppose, is why we occasionally see G_d in these discussions.
Judaism does not prohibit writing the Name of God per se; it prohibits only erasing or defacing a Name of God. However, observant Jews avoid writing any Name of God casually because of the risk that the written Name might later be defaced, obliterated or destroyed accidentally or by one who does not know better.
The commandment not to erase or deface the name of God comes from Deut. 12:3. In that passage, the people are commanded that when they take over the promised land, they should destroy all things related to the idolatrous religions of that region, and should utterly destroy the names of the local deities. Immediately afterwards, we are commanded not to do the same to our God. From this, the rabbis inferred that we are commanded not to destroy any holy thing, and not to erase or deface a Name of God.
It is worth noting that this prohibition against erasing or defacing Names of God applies only to Names that are written in some kind of permanent form, and recent rabbinical decisions have held that writing on a computer is not a permanent form, thus it is not a violation to type God's Name into a computer and then backspace over it or cut and paste it, or copy and delete files with God's Name in them. However, once you print the document out, it becomes a permanent form. That is why observant Jews avoid writing a Name of God on web sites like this one or in BBS messages: because there is a risk that someone else will print it out and deface it.
Normally, we avoid writing the Name by substituting letters or syllables, for example, writing "G-d" instead of "God." In addition, the number 15, which would ordinarily be written in Hebrew as Yod-Heh (10-5), is normally written as Tet-Vav (9-6), because Yod-Heh is a Name. See Hebrew Alphabet for more information about using letters as numerals.
Abominable behavior quickly followed, e.g. abortion and mainstreaming of homosexuality. Those are symptoms of the disease, i.e. "officially" blinding this nation to God.
He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. - Psalms 2:1-5
There is an arrogance inherent in atheism which seems rather irrational to me ... how can an atheist assertion certainty that a Creator does not exist when the atheist literally has so much evidence to the contrary? The irrationalness of a Christopher Hitchens or of a Dawkins nags at one the more they open their bitter mouths. Reminds me of a toddler who throws theirself to the floor in a fit for a specific toy, hoping the parent will give them attention and provide what the toddler demands while writhing around screaming in a pile of toys.
I agree with the arrogance, which is a reflection of narcissism. They seem to revel in defying God in their self-congratulatory academic fashion. In that they assume superiority over the rest of us. As far as the toddler is concerned, I see it as him locking himself out of the house in defiance of the parents.
AG, thanks again for the wonderful history lesson. It seems that some Jewish fundamentalist could use a small dose of Christianity and its offer of redemption.
If there are an infinite number of universes with an infinite number of configurations of the laws of physics, then it is inevitable not only that a Supreme being exists but that an infinite number of supreme beings both good and evil exist. It is inevitable that with an infinite number of universes there must be an infinite number of universes where these supreme beings can exist in more than just one universe. Therefore it follows if all possibilities are true that an infinite number of times an infinite number of evil Supreme beings have consumed the entire multiverse and would have destroyed it. Since we are here speaking to one another that is not possible. Therefore the multiverse refutes itself. The problem is that they start with an infinite plurality to explain the universe we see, rather than a singularity, while Aristotle pointed out long ago that a first cause is the only philosophically logical answer.
Too bad I was too busy with other things and missed out on this thread. Very interesting. Maybe next time. But 21stCenturion is right, since the definition of ‘Multi-verse’ defines all other ‘universes’ as being entirely outside the experiential limits of this one, and thus impossible to verify one way or the other, it is merely conjecture and nothing more. And all it can ever remain.
Finally, SOMEBODY who seems to ‘get it’ ...
The whole point of the Multi-verse’s infinite proliferation of ‘universes’ is to ‘allow’ mutually exclusive events / outcomes / histories in a limited single ‘Universe’ that MUST otherwise forbid ( exclude ) them. THAT, after all, is what ‘mutually exclusive’ means.
Since there is NO possible way to observe / experience / act upon these ‘other universes’ from within our own, they may as well not EXIST because their ‘existence’ has NO meaning or significance, from our frame of reference.
As Gertrude Stein ( speaking about her home town of Oakland, CA ) said “There is no ‘there’ there ...”.
I objected, originally, to the fallacious and ‘hand-waving’ pseudo-logic being used to describe a ‘Multi-verse theory’ and what significance such a ‘theory’ might have. I also argued that the use of the term ‘theory’ in this discussion was unsound and, in fact, incorrect.
Essentially, I was NOT arguing for or against any ‘proof’ derived from this conjecture. I merely tried to point out that the conjecture itself was unsound, unnecessary and pointless.
Thank you, LogicWings, for honing in on the essence of my rather prolix exercise.