Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by Cris, Jun 21, 2001.
All theists should consider God a close personal friend imho.
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If the perceived decision is known long beforehand, have you in fact made any decision at all? A decision is the ability to choose between multiple options, but here you have no ability to choose any alternative other than the one that appears to have been pre-determined for you.
But you would be unable to choose otherwise. Something that has no effective choice is an automaton. And that is what you become if every single action in your life is known with perfection, say thousands of years before you are born.
If your actions are known before you choose then you have no free will to take any alternative path.
The issue remains very simple - if knowledge of the future is known perfectly then free-will must be absent.
And many young children similarly create personal imaginary friends for their own comfort. Gods are the fantasies that adults create for themselves for their own comfort.
Except that in 12 years no one has been able to demonstrate that. Do you have something new to add?
I've thought about that idea some time ago but it doesn't work.
An omniscient god would know the path of each individual instance perfectly. The potential infinite versions of you would still each remain absent of free will - the actions in each path/instance would be known beforehand.
athiests have faith too. faith that one doesn't exist. Geez get over yourselves...you DON'T know. Evolution does not explain the first cell.
A. Anything always having been is impossible, for then there is no definition point, which is still true even if it is claimed to somehow be timeless. William Lane Craig got this far, noting that the universe had to have a beginning, but he forgot that all existents must have a beginning, whether electrons, ‘Gods’, or whatnot—any entity. Thus, they must be created, and thus cannot be the First and Fundamental. Yet, there is nothing to make any entity of, which we will get to later. Nothing is not anything.
“Wait!” Some might say. “Why not forever entities? Say more.”
Well, then what would determine its amount, its form, its properties, its ‘where’, its ‘when’, etc. In other words, the entity(s) would have been already made and defined without ever having been made and defined in the first place (that never was). They would be unmakeable, and thus unbreakable, as in having no parts, almost as in string theory, or maybe that is what they say.
So, again, entities must be created.
Then the basic entities hereabouts or the same making up composites are the same exact ones as there always were, which is fine, but that is a set, certain amount, and they operate in specific ways; yet, why not more or less of them, etc?
B. OK, so what creates the base entities? Not by another entity, for then we were not really speaking of the base entity. So, they have to come from no place, which is a lack of anything (nothing). Some might call this ‘causeless’. We already knew there was nothing to make anything of, so we are not surprised. And we’ve already shown that entities cannot have been forever, which was even enough by itself to lead us here.
“Well, OK, but it would be nice to confirm it.”
C. The zero-balance necessity begets the conservation laws of energy, momentum, and angular momentum—of point-of-view invariance, as discovered by Noether.
Nature demonstrates a zero-sum balance of opposites, such as with gravity vs mass, polarity of charge, matter and anti-matter.
Your argument asserts that something cannot be infinite, since everything needs to be created. And hence there must have been a beginning.
That is necessarily false. The existence of infinity is necessary since if there was ever a point where nothing existed then there would have been nothing to initiate a beginning, and we couldn't be here. This paradox dissolves once we realize that something must have always existed.
Remember also that the conservation of energy only applies to a closed system and the properties of infinity fundamentally invalidate that criteria.
That depends on how you view the definition of atheism, either a belief system, or the absence of theistic belief. It is the latter that most atheists associate with their perspective.
The atheist position is one primarily of opposition to theistic claims, rather than any specific claims of their own. Atheism isn't simply an alternate belief system requiring faith like religions. Atheism is dependent on theism, and if theism didn't exist then neither would atheism.
I disagree. Atheism now stands alone, with a view to replacing religion, which is why there has been a call (from some atheists) to drop the title ''atheist'', as they don't see themselves as that. They're basically implying that God does not exist, therefore the term ''atheist'' isn't necessary (imo), and now seek to advance in a non religious/theistic world.
That's incorrect. There have been several prominent atheists to reject the term, and for different, sometimes opposing, reasons. Christopher Hitchens, for example, contended that it was too broad. He preferred "anti-theist" because he felt it better reflected his views. Sam Harris's opinion is closer to what you say; he believes that calling oneself an atheist is as silly as calling oneself an a-alchemist, or an a-astrologist. (Granted, neither of those words easily lend themselves to the "A," but you get the point)
He also believes, however, that the word carries a lot of baggage which doesn't fit with his worldview. For example, he believes there is merit to the transcendental, taking somewhat of a Buddhist view on what others might call "spirituality," and simply grounding it in science.
I will agree that atheism does not require theism, because it is at most the belief that there is no deity or any of the trappings that come with with it. One could theoretically believe this without ever having been aware of theism.
What atheism does rely on is knowledge. The more one knows about the world at large, the less phenomena available to be attributed to a divine agent. Just as religion--or religiosity, or faith, or whatever--relies on ignorance. The less one knows about the world, the more likely one is to attribute the unknown to just such an agent.
There is a way to have both free will and a sense of order and direction at the same time, even though these appear mutually exclusive. There is a demonstration of this in nature, called osmosis.
Osmosis is driven by entropy, which among other things expresses an increase in randomness; goes from order to randomness. This is the free will analogy where humans depart from being natural robots. Although osmosis is driven by the randomness of increasing entropy at the micro-level, the global result is macro-level order/pressure that is directed. The increase in micro-randomness will create a directed macro-pressure that is a function of how the apparatus (creation) is set up.
Engineers use the randomness of entropy within osmosis, to generate directed work cycles at the macro-level. This green and renewable energy, using a membrane to separate the waters from the waters. It makes sense that the apparent randomness of free will allows a larger sense of order that can be used to create work; evolve creation.
That is a false conclusion based on an erroneous or unrealistic definition of omniscience. Omniscience is maximal knowledge, not absolute knowledge. The real question is whether the future possesses a truth value which can be known ahead of time. If not then there is no future as yet to be known, even for the omniscient.
This is supported by the existence of stochastic processes in nature that would to some extent necessarily limit the definite truth value of future events.
It is the conservation of energy that allows for existence from nothing, as two opposing and balanced charges can freely come into existence without violating it. Their total contribution is zero.
It is hypothesized that the total energy of the entire universe is equal to zero. If so, there is no logical or physical contradiction in it coming from nothing.
Yes, this would be the continual beginnings of stuff from nothing everywhere and always, but it's not the same exact stuff; so, any specific stuff always traces back to nothing. One could say the capability of 'from nothing' is eternal, this capability being a something.
The capability/possibility never had to be 'decided', for it has to be the default position, in that when there is a lack of anything, including any laws or constraints, then anything goes.
That definition is still inadequate. There cannot have been a point where there was nothing (universe wide). The quantum concepts of something from nothing is a really throw away unsatisfactory cop out.
In essence I don't believe something can come from nothing.
All very nice, but the subject is religion and in this case what you suggest would limit the powers of the god in question. The definition of omniscience with regard to Christianity is that God has absolute knowledge. Christianity is not a practical discipline, and the opening assumption of this thread was based on Christian definitions not practical ones.
In a practical sense I suspect I could predict all future events perfectly if I had a complete knowledge of every variable in the universe, plus the appropriate computing power to perform the forecasting. Such power feels very godlike to me.
No. Theism is simply the proposition that there is a god. Atheism is a disagreement with that proposition. Atheism is totally dependent on that initiating proposition.
For example if some caveman from the distant past uniquely imagines the concept that there is no god then he has automatically created the theist proposal with which he disagrees - i.e. can say no to. The theist proposition must come first and be considered first before it can be rejected - i.e. atheism.
The only alternative is where the concept of god did not exist and in that case we would neither have theism or atheism.
Perhaps you do not understand what a stochastic process is. But anyway, you can look that up for yourself if you have any consideration for avoiding cognitive bias.
The definition of omniscience has nothing to do with what anyone may or may not believe. There is simply no logical limitation in something without any truth value being unknown. In general, Christianity does better at reconciling omnipotence than omniscience, even though both operate the same way with regard to free will.
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i'm sure in a thiests' forum nobody was able to demonstrate that the christian god cannot exist for 12+ years as well.
the valid unrebutted refutation has been presented, nothing to add:shrug:
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.... and I'm still waiting for the irrefutable proof Smurfs can't exist as well.... SNAP!
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