Fine tuning Intelligent Design Religion Science

Does the designer need to be God?

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I (News) usually run this kind of question on Sunday but at a recent post, “Intelligent design: The materialist double standard” there was an exchange:

Bob O’H: Seriously, what is the IDers’ answer to the “who designed the designer” question?

(failure to answer this will – of course – immediately condemn all IDers as poopyheads, despite any efforts by the Federation of Creationist Scientists, International/Overseas to suppress this categorisation)

and it was replied to:

Barry Arrington: Bob, have you ever heard the old saw “there’s no such thing as a stupid question?” It is false. Stupid questions abound. The one you just asked is one of them. As has been pointed out on these pages 1,303,261 times (all of which apparently sailed right over your head), the design inference is independent of the provenance of the designer.

Okay. A lot depends on what one wants an explanation to do. From J. Warner Wallace at Cold Case Christianity:

Imagine if someone said, “Christians sometimes point to the appearance of fine-tuning in the universe as proof that God exists. But you don’t need God to explain this fine-tuning.” How would you respond to such a statement? Here is a conversational example of how I recently replied:

He draws on extensive case files from his career as a homicide detective, then adds:

The universe is so incredibly fine-tuned, and even atheists admit there is an appearance of fine-tuning. At the foundational level, the constants of the universe; all the forces in the atom, including the weak nuclear force, the strong nuclear force, in addition to the forces of electromagnetism and gravity (along with many more universal constants) are incredibly fine-tuned to assure the existence of our universe and the appearance of biological life. At a regional level, our galaxy possesses a particular shape, size, mass, density, and location that allows life to emerge. Our solar system is also fine-tuned for the existence of life. Our sun’s location in the galaxy, it’s size, mass and nature are perfectly life-permitting. Finally, at what I call the ‘locational’ level, Earth is also finely tuned with a particular atmosphere, terrestrial crust, size, tilt, distance from the sun and existence of a moon that allows life to emerge.

Given all these levels of apparent fine-tuning, it’s reasonable to ask the question: how do we explain these layers of tampering, while at the same time, rejecting the existence of a tamperer? There are only a few ways to do this. First, you might ask: is this fine-tuning the result of chance? When you investigate at the improbability of this explanation, especially when we recognize the multi-layered nature of the fine-tuning, it’s unreasonable to explain what we see as a matter of chance. Another way to explain the appearance of fine-tuning is to argue that it’s inevitable based on the existence of the ‘natural laws’ than govern the universe. But this second explanation is rejected even by atheist astrophysicists. Many of these scientists claim our universe could possess entirely different universal constants (although an alternate universe of this nature would be unable to support the existence of life like ours). Finally, multiverse theories are growing in their popularity as an explanation for the fine-tuning in our universe. If there’s an infinite number of universes in a multiverse system, one like ours could exist simply on the basis of probability. But multiverse theories are incredibly controversial, even among atheist scientists, because the evidence for a multiverse is not commonly recognized and multiverse theories necessitate the existence of every kind of possible universe, including parallel universes (and even universes in which God exists – a notion unacceptable to atheist thinkers). More.

But are there no other options? What about this?: The laws that create fine-tuning, however they came to be, are the basis of the universe. The universe is their possibly inevitable outcome.

The laws include moral laws (which explain moral intuitions that cannot really be derived from vulgar claims about Darwinian fitness). That is, people would obey the moral law (or not) irrespective of whether their descendants survive and breed.

In the Eastern conception of karma, one cannot escape the choices one has made in a past life because these laws operate as natural laws. So the idea of rebirth is not an escape from death but rather a requirement that those who have acquired bad karma rebalance the system to zero via good karma, after which they can be liberated from existence.

I am not saying I believe this. I am wondering why it would not work as an explanation for a fine-tuned universe where intelligent beings have moral intuitions not derived from observations of animal nature. What observations does it not address?

See also: Copernicus, you are not going to believe who is using your name. Or how.

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54 Replies to “Does the designer need to be God?

  1. 1
    EDTA says:

    I’m not sure I follow you completely. If these hypothetical laws were somehow material, then we haven’t explained their origin. If the laws are immaterial (like Plato’s forms?), then what imposed them on the universe, and what caused the universe to conform to them? And how would those laws that initially controlled the form of the universe then make their way into our minds as moral laws?

    Those would be my first questions anyway…

  2. 2
    ppolish says:

    “Who designed the designer?” asks one thoughtful human designed robot to another.

    “Nobody designed the designer” answers another.

    Nobody designed the designer? Who programmed that robot – an atheist? Or a theist?

  3. 3
    rvb8 says:

    Firstly, atheists do not admit an appearance of fine tuning. If gravitational constants, the velocity of light, atomic forces, and Pi were all easy round numbers, then that would point to design.

    As it is when you look at the list of mathematical constants on Wikipedia you see an alarming aray of randomness, almost as if these natural constants appeared randomly in a messy violent, unstable, poorly designed, universe.

    The who designed the designer question, simply notes that God’s answer, “I am that I am”, aside from being an unprovable tautology, is also a lazy answer.

    I don’t know what existed before the Big Bang, and as the Big Bang created time and space, and as time and space are requirements for existance I would say nothing existed; but then of course you must ask, what made time and space?

    Your answer is God. A weak answer requiring no effort or curiosity. As it stands at the moment, I’ll go for the multi verse and parallel universe answer.

    My answer at least has the benefit of being possibly testable in the future, as we learn more about black holes and quantum strangeness. The test for a designer, or God? Fat chance.

  4. 4
    Marfin says:

    Rvb8- Here you go again extolling the virtues of science but when asked a science question you run away and hide.
    So Rvb8 is the Big Bang in defiance and opposition to the first law of thermodynamics , which is one of the most well founded and substantiated laws of science.

  5. 5
    kairosfocus says:

    RVB8:

    Firstly, atheists do not admit an appearance of fine tuning.

    I would think that the Nobel-equivalent prize winning astrophysicist Sir Fred Hoyle would fit with what is generally termed being an atheist. He also happened to be an expert on the subject. So, the agit-prop talking point fails utterly when we see:

    From 1953 onward, Willy Fowler and I have always been intrigued by the remarkable relation of the 7.65 MeV energy level in the nucleus of 12 C to the 7.12 MeV level in 16 O. If you wanted to produce carbon and oxygen in roughly equal quantities by stellar nucleosynthesis, these are the two levels you would have to fix, and your fixing would have to be just where these levels are actually found to be. Another put-up job? . . . I am inclined to think so. A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a super intellect has “monkeyed” with the physics as well as the chemistry and biology, and there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. [F. Hoyle, Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 20 (1982): 16.]

    Earlier in the same Caltech talk, he argued:

    The big problem in biology, as I see it, is to understand the origin of the information carried by the explicit structures of biomolecules. The issue isn’t so much the rather crude fact that a protein consists of a chain of amino acids linked together in a certain way, but that the explicit ordering of the amino acids endows the chain with remarkable properties, which other orderings wouldn’t give. The case of the enzymes is well known . . . If amino acids were linked at random, there would be a vast number of arrange-ments that would be useless in serving the pur-poses of a living cell. When you consider that a typical enzyme has a chain of perhaps 200 links and that there are 20 possibilities for each link,it’s easy to see that the number of useless arrangements is enormous, more than the number of atoms in all the galaxies visible in the largest telescopes. This is for one enzyme, and there are upwards of 2000 of them, mainly serving very different purposes. So how did the situation get to where we find it to be? This is, as I see it, the biological problem – the information problem . . . .

    I was constantly plagued by the thought that the number of ways in which even a single enzyme could be wrongly constructed was greater than the number of all the atoms in the universe. So try as I would, I couldn’t convince myself that even the whole universe would be sufficient to find life by random processes – by what are called the blind forces of nature . . . . By far the simplest way to arrive at the correct sequences of amino acids in the enzymes would be by thought, not by random processes . . . .

    Now imagine yourself as a superintellect working through possibilities in polymer chemistry. Would you not be astonished that polymers based on the carbon atom turned out in your calculations to have the remarkable properties of the enzymes and other biomolecules? Would you not be bowled over in surprise to find that a living cell was a feasible construct? Would you not say to yourself, in whatever language supercalculating intellects use: Some supercalculating intellect must have designed the properties of the carbon atom, otherwise the chance of my finding such an atom through the blind forces of nature would be utterly minuscule. Of course you would, and if you were a sensible superintellect you would conclude that the carbon atom is a fix.

    And again:

    I do not believe that any physicist who examined the evidence could fail to draw the inference that the laws of nuclear physics have been deliberately designed with regard to the consequences they produce within stars. [[“The Universe: Past and Present Reflections.” Engineering and Science, November, 1981. pp. 8–12]

    That’s the context for understanding the force of the much more general result given by Walker and Davies — as has been put to you repeatedly and studiously ignored:

    In physics, particularly in statistical mechanics, we base many of our calculations on the assumption of metric transitivity, which asserts that a system’s trajectory will eventually [–> given “enough time and search resources”] explore the entirety of its state space – thus everything that is phys-ically possible will eventually happen. It should then be trivially true that one could choose an arbitrary “final state” (e.g., a living organism) and “explain” it by evolving the system backwards in time choosing an appropriate state at some ’start’ time t_0 (fine-tuning the initial state). In the case of a chaotic system the initial state must be specified to arbitrarily high precision. But this account amounts to no more than saying that the world is as it is because it was as it was, and our current narrative therefore scarcely constitutes an explanation in the true scientific sense.

    We are left in a bit of a conundrum with respect to the problem of specifying the initial conditions necessary to explain our world. A key point is that if we require specialness in our initial state (such that we observe the current state of the world and not any other state) metric transitivity cannot hold true, as it blurs any dependency on initial conditions – that is, it makes little sense for us to single out any particular state as special by calling it the ’initial’ state. If we instead relax the assumption of metric transitivity (which seems more realistic for many real world physical systems – including life), then our phase space will consist of isolated pocket regions and it is not necessarily possible to get to any other physically possible state (see e.g. Fig. 1 for a cellular automata example).

    [–> or, there may not be “enough” time and/or resources for the relevant exploration, i.e. we see the 500 – 1,000 bit complexity threshold at work vs 10^57 – 10^80 atoms with fast rxn rates at about 10^-13 to 10^-15 s leading to inability to explore more than a vanishingly small fraction on the gamut of Sol system or observed cosmos . . . the only actually, credibly observed cosmos]

    Thus the initial state must be tuned to be in the region of phase space in which we find ourselves [–> notice, fine tuning], and there are regions of the configuration space our physical universe would be excluded from accessing, even if those states may be equally consistent and permissible under the microscopic laws of physics (starting from a different initial state). Thus according to the standard picture, we require special initial conditions to explain the complexity of the world, but also have a sense that we should not be on a particularly special trajectory to get here (or anywhere else) as it would be a sign of fine–tuning of the initial conditions. [ –> notice, the “loading”] Stated most simply, a potential problem with the way we currently formulate physics is that you can’t necessarily get everywhere from anywhere (see Walker [31] for discussion). [“The “Hard Problem” of Life,” June 23, 2016, a discussion by Sara Imari Walker and Paul C.W. Davies at Arxiv.]

    As for the next sentence:

    If gravitational constants, the velocity of light, atomic forces, and Pi were all easy round numbers, then that would point to design.

    Strawman.

    First, our scheme of numnering on decimal place values is arbitrary, we could even gain advantages by going to a -10 base! More importantly, the values of pi, e, 0, 1 and i are logically locked together to literally infinite precision, per Euler’s expression 0 = 1 + e^i*pi, which gives us high confidence in the coherence of a lot of math tied to the functionality of our world. Let’s just say that for years I lived more in the complex frequency domain than the day to day time domain.

    Further to this, demanding round numbers manifests ignorance of the reality: there are dozens of fine tuned constraints that set our observed cosmos to a precise, deeply isolated operating point for C-Chemistry, aqueous medium, terrestrial planet in spiral galaxy galactic habitable zone life. And things involved include precision of order 1 in 10^60 etc.

    As for the who designed the designer rhetorical gambit, let me clip from another thread where I noted as follows last evening in the materialist double-standards thread:

    99
    kairosfocusMay 16, 2017 at 4:31 pm

    F/N: The who designed the designer objection is actually a philosophically loaded objection. We are interested to assess causal process credibly accounting for X on signs relevant to X. The objection implies that designs require designer so you cannot properly discuss X without discussing the — in the nature of the case, unobserved — designer D1, and then the further inferred unobserved designers in cascade D2, D3 etc. So, the shift is to pull away from empirical signs and warranted causes per observation to a projected infinite regress, itself likely to be loaded with a priori evolutionary materialist assumptions and talking points. The red herring is dragged away from the empirical evidence and inductive warrant issue to shift to a strawman designer chain, to be soaked in loaded accusations and set alight. Meanwhile, the point that evidence of design is by reasonable second inference evidence of a designer with relevant capabilities, is distracted from and tainted by switching to an ideologically polarised debate not anchored in evidence. Frankly, I find this trifecta rhetorical tactic — and in various forms it repeatedly comes up in contexts discussing design evidence — to be cynically dishonest. It is high time such shabby and deceitful stratagems were acknowledged as improper, retracted and apologised for. Of course, some of the more naive objectors don’t realise the nature of the dirty tactics in the talking points they are being misled to use by those they look to for leadership. KF

    PS: I have already recently argued as to why a temporal-causal successive chain will be finite and non-circular in the past, pointing to a world-root of necessary being character. But that result is of course across the border, in philosophy. And no, “everything has a cause” is ignorance to be addressed through studying the nature of being, for which I find a possible worlds approach useful. The phil just will not go away.

    As for rhetoric that ethical theism is a weak answer requiring little effort, that is little more than an intimidatory, ill-advised rhetorical boast. It shows that you have not seriously engaged worldviews considerations, I give a 101 here on.

    RVB8, it is high time for a serious bit of re-thinking on your part.

    KF

    PS: On evidence in hand, design of life on earth could be accounted for on a molecular nanotech lab several generations beyond Venter. It is fine tuning of the cosmos that calls for a designer capable of building such a cosmos, and then we see how it is fine tuned for C-Chem, aqueous medium life. Those are serious issues and the sort of rhetoric I just had to remark on does not remotely begin to reckon seriously with such.

  6. 6
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: If the fine tuned values are locked by a super-law, that would point to second level fine tuning or even more incredible cumulative degree. Indeed, it would point to a programmed cosmos bakery cooking up life-habitable sub-cosmi. KF

  7. 7
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N 2: John Leslie has something to say about the matter that we again need to hear:

    One striking thing about the fine tuning is that a force strength or a particle mass often appears to require accurate tuning for several reasons at once. Look at electromagnetism. Electromagnetism seems to require tuning for there to be any clear-cut distinction between matter and radiation; for stars to burn neither too fast nor too slowly for life’s requirements; for protons to be stable; for complex chemistry to be possible; for chemical changes not to be extremely sluggish; and for carbon synthesis inside stars (carbon being quite probably crucial to life). Universes all obeying the same fundamental laws could still differ in the strengths of their physical forces, as was explained earlier, and random variations in electromagnetism from universe to universe might then ensure that it took on any particular strength sooner or later. Yet how could they possibly account for the fact that the same one strength satisfied many potentially conflicting requirements, each of them a requirement for impressively accurate tuning? [Our Place in the Cosmos, 1998 (courtesy Wayback Machine) Emphases added.]

    He also notes, through a famous metaphor:

    . . . the need for such explanations does not depend on any estimate of how many universes would be observer-permitting, out of the entire field of possible universes. Claiming that our universe is ‘fine tuned for observers’, we base our claim on how life’s evolution would apparently have been rendered utterly impossible by comparatively minor alterations in physical force strengths, elementary particle masses and so forth. There is no need for us to ask whether very great alterations in these affairs would have rendered it fully possible once more, let alone whether physical worlds conforming to very different laws could have been observer-permitting without being in any way fine tuned. Here it can be useful to think of a fly on a wall, surrounded by an empty region. A bullet hits the fly Two explanations suggest themselves. Perhaps many bullets are hitting the wall or perhaps a marksman fired the bullet. There is no need to ask whether distant areas of the wall, or other quite different walls, are covered with flies so that more or less any bullet striking there would have hit one. The important point is that the local area contains just the one fly.

    KF

  8. 8
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N3: The temporal-causal framework of our cosmos points to a regress to origins. Infinite regress is not feasible (as this implies trying to span endlessness in finite stage steps, a futility). An ultimate chicken-egg loop of circular causation is not feasible as it implies something coming from nothing. That leaves a finitely remote world root. Where, as non-being has no causal capacity, were there ever utter nothing such would forever obtain. A world now is, so something always was, implying a necessary, world-framing eternal being without beginning or end, independent of other beings for existence. In effect the pure actuality of the philosophers. Such a NB world-root would be present in all possible worlds. But now, we find ourselves as morally governed, rationally and responsibly contemplative, significantly free creatures, just as requisites to have a serious conversation. That points to a need for an IS that grounds OUGHT inherently, at world root level. After centuries of debate, there is but one serious candidate: the essentially good creator God, a necessary and maximally great being, worthy of loyalty and the reasonable, responsible service of doing the good in accord with our evident nature. The God of ethical theism, antecedent to any religious traditions as such. It is interesting to see that this is on worldview level inference to best explanation per comparative difficulties, and that an invitation to put forth a coherent alternative having been often given: _____, we find a studious dodging of this challenge, by and large. It is interesting, that the issue of clarifying the nature of omniscience did come up, but from a theist. Grudem’s reply on Divine Sovereignty meaning God’s ability to effect his holy will has proved an apt succinct answer, though one that obviously needs a lot of unpacking to see its full import. KF

    PS: No species of monism is capable of accounting for significant, responsible rational freedom, whether eastern pantheistic idealism or western materialism. Likewise any scheme that appeals to blind chance and/or mechanical necessity. It turns out that it is crucial to be able to see moral evil as the outworking of responsible choice, whereby the good is twisted and/or frustrated from its proper end. That is, evil is not an ultimate creation and aspect of the world-root. it cannot be balanced to zero in some imagined scheme of cosmological accounting. And fading to zero is not the proper end of those who have eternity placed in their hearts and may be surprised by C S Lewis’ joy beyond earthly fulfillments.

  9. 9
    News says:

    rvb8 writes at 3: “Firstly, atheists do not admit an appearance of fine tuning. If gravitational constants, the velocity of light, atomic forces, and Pi were all easy round numbers, then that would point to design.”

    Round numbers? But “round numbers” are a human construct. If you use the decimal system of counting, the tens series will be round numbers to you. I’ve heard that one West African system is base 17 (sum of first four primes). No doubt those are “round numbers” in that vicinity.

    Have arguments against fine-tuning really come down to this?

    Also: Could pi even BE round number? One wonders whether its sheer irrationality provides a sort of stability.

  10. 10
    daveS says:

    I’ve heard that one West African system is base 17 (sum of first four primes). No doubt those are “round numbers” in that vicinity.

    Now that’s an interesting choice.

  11. 11
    john_a_designer says:

    ”Could pi even BE round number?”

    No. For Euclidian geometry it must necessarily be the value it is. But it is a number about things which are round. Therefore, you could say that it is a round number– the ultimate round number, couldn’t you?

    One of the mysterious things about pi is that it appears to show up in nature where we don’t expect it. As the following Nova program explains in the natural world, “pi appears in a whole host of other phenomena… which have nothing to do with circles… [for example] it appears in probability theory quite a bit.”

    The discussion of pi begins at 7:35. However, the whole program is worth watching. There are other fascinating numbers besides pi.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3iuBXrTBRo

    I don’t see how the number pi or the profound mathematical nature of the universe could lead anyone into atheism. Anyone who smugly says that “God wouldn’t have done it that way,” needs demonstrate that by creating his own world. Short of that I am skeptical that he has the vaguest clue that he really knows what he is talking about it.

  12. 12
    mikeenders says:

    Firstly, atheists do not admit an appearance of fine tuning. If gravitational constants, the velocity of light, atomic forces, and Pi were all easy round numbers, then that would point to design.

    though its been answered – a truly ridiculous condition as if fractions/decimals are shunned by any proposed designer.

    The who designed the designer question, simply notes that God’s answer, “I am that I am”, aside from being an unprovable tautology, is also a lazy answer.

    Thats a pretty lazy retort. Its not only provable its logically undefeatable. You yourself then align with multiple universes and parallel universe “answers”. However thats not an answer but simple a “punt” to one more turtle down the turtles all the way down proposition. At some point you end up with something or someone that is just because it/he/she is. even an eternal regression of causes is causeless. You are just not thinking beyond shallow rehtoric.

    P.S. the fact that all three world religions positing a designer used fractions in their books hundreds of year before any controversy regarding a designer is yet another nail in the coffin of your condition that round numbers are a logical pointer to a designer. Since fractions were used in their religious calculations why wouldn’t their designer use them in the universe?

  13. 13
    kairosfocus says:

    Try to get an exact whole number of teeth on a gear without dealing in irrationals starting with c = 2 * pi * r. Likewise for growth linked to a rate on current mass and frequency related phenomena, without running into e or its close relatives. KF

  14. 14
    LocalMinimum says:

    There are plenty of elegant ways to describe Pi. Just not within the real numbers. It really sounds like a complaint that there exist, simultaneously, round pegs and square holes; and that, surely, this makes the whole toy industry worthy of condemnation; or even casts doubts towards its existence.

  15. 15
    hnorman5 says:

    A base 17 number system? Everybody knows base 10 is the only legitimate numbering system. All those zeros make it easier to work with. 😉

  16. 16
    News says:

    kairosfocus at 8, I can see why the universe cannot be infinitely old, because everything would already have happened, including its demise, an infinite number of times.

    I am still not sure why the “armies of unalterable law” cannot stand in the place of God, with respect to design as such.

    To ask what created them is like asking who created God. It’s not a silly question so much as one with no possible answer in this frame of reality.

    That is, it is like asking, “What if two and two did not make four?”

    What indeed? It is possible to ask a question to which there cannot be an answer. But that says nothing about the intrinsic reality of what we are discussing.

  17. 17
    rvb8 says:

    Marfin @4;

    “So Marfin is GOD in defiance and opposition to the first law of thermodynamics…?”

    And I’m accused of silly questions.

    Could an all powerful, all knowing God, make Pi=3.0? Or is this God constrained by circles, diameters, and physical laws; it would appear so.

    And the simple observation that constants are messy, derived from a violent, destructive universe, which is accelerating to a ‘heat death’ in sevral hundred billions of years also points to chaos and randomness at work.

    NEWS,

    Yes! ‘Fine Tuning’ arguments have come down to this. When I design something I don’t make one side of the box 1.56473m, and the other 1.37856m because that’s stupid and bad design.

    All of the messy constants points to one of two conclusions; that God is a shoody designer, a good designer would make simple round numbers; or, God is constrained by nature, making God part of nature, placing God under the rule of nature, making nature greater than God.

    No other conclusions are possible; Oh sorry, one other conclusion, there is no God, only nature. And I’m just fine with that, actually the alternative is positively frightening for you (but not me), because your God may be the wrong one.

  18. 18
    Marfin says:

    Rvb8- So Big Bang , first law of thermodynamics , you don`t want to answer the question, why am I not surprised.

  19. 19
    Axel says:

    Great article of yours in Nota Bene, today, News : How Rationalism Rots Science from the Head Down. It made very amusing reading for all the right reasons. It might seem like shooting fish in a barrel, atheists inviting ridicule by the infinity of their folly, but

    a) Ordinarily, you have a withering way with words, to match your satirical inights, anyway, and occasionally prompt much squealing from the chaotic ranks of scientism’s finest, and

    b) This is eccentric from you, in that regard, in that you simply allow them to show what fools they are by soberly citing a few of their more outlandish, intellectual antics ; which, of course, heightens the humour – rather like the characteristically dead-pan delivery of Australians of their jokes.

    And, of course, what raises the madness of materialists to truly dizzying heights is that they claim to be paragons of rational analysis.

  20. 20
    Axel says:

    ‘No other conclusions are possible; Oh sorry, one other conclusion, there is no God, only nature. And I’m just fine with that…’

    But your opinions are of no consequence are they, rvb8 ? You could be a splendid jewel fit to be the centre-piece of a royal crown ; or a piece of ordure. Both just matter. No more, no less.

  21. 21
    john_a_designer says:

    J. Warner Wallace quote from the OP,

    The universe is so incredibly fine-tuned, and even atheists admit there is an appearance of fine-tuning. At the foundational level, the constants of the universe; all the forces in the atom, including the weak nuclear force, the strong nuclear force, in addition to the forces of electromagnetism and gravity (along with many more universal constants) are incredibly fine-tuned to assure the existence of our universe and the appearance of biological life.

    (emphasis added)

    In 2007 while making observations at the Keck observatory in Hawaii, Sandra Faber, a professor of astronomy at the University of California, Santa Cruz, told science writer Anil Ananthaswamy,

    “that there were only two possible explanations for fine-tuning. ‘One is that there is a God and that God made it that way…’ But for Faber, an atheist, divine intervention is not the answer.

    ‘The only other approach that makes any sense is to argue that there really is an infinite, or a very big, ensemble of universes out there and we are in one,’ she said.

    This ensemble would be the multiverse. In a multiverse, the laws of physics and the values of physical parameters like dark energy would be different in each universe, each the outcome of some random pull on the cosmic slot machine. We just happened to luck into a universe that is conducive to life. After all, if our corner of the multiverse were hostile to life, Faber and I wouldn’t be around to ponder these questions under stars.”

    One of the problems with invoking the multiverse is there is absolutely no evidence that it exists. So an atheist who believes in it must believe it on the basis of faith. But isn’t the pretense and posture of atheism that it doesn’t require faith?

  22. 22
    Axel says:

    ‘In 2007 while making observations at the Keck observatory in Hawaii, Sandra Faber, a professor of astronomy at the University of California, Santa Cruz, told science writer Anil Ananthaswamy,’

    ————–

    Dear Ms Faber, what are you doing making observations ? They only give you ‘appearances’, tell you how something appears. You know… that empirical nonsense.

    But truth to tell, you have nowhere to go, do you, when you dismiss observations that ‘might allow God a foot in the door’, while earning your living carrying out other observations that will accomodate your favoured world-view, but will be false.

  23. 23
    jerry says:

    “Christians sometimes point to the appearance of fine-tuning in the universe as proof that God exists.

    No, it only points to the existence of an intelligence with huge capabilities. This Intelligence does not have to have the characteristics of the Judeo/Christian God.

    I suggest people read “The Last Question” by Issac Asimov, a professed atheist.

    http://multivax.com/last_question.html

    failure to answer this will – of course – immediately condemn all IDers as poopyheads

    What a silly statement. I assume it was made. The ultimate question is why does anything exists. Once that is given, the existence of a huge intelligence can be explained very easily. I am surprised that the anti-ID people do not take this obvious path. My guess is that they do not want to admit the existence of a huge intelligence no matter what.

    If one wants to get to the existence of the Judeo/Christian God, then that is another line of reasoning completely divorced from ID.

  24. 24

    News asks:

    What observations does it not address?

    What parts of the theistic argument does it address? How does one get karma and reincarnation without a soul and a non-material spiritual realm? Are you saying these exist, but are part of the natural world and operate by natural law? If so, what is free will? How does one explain the experience of the Divine?

    I mean, if we’re going to ignore how it all came to exist in the first place and just accept it as a brute fact, who cares about natural moral law? You say the penalty is continued existence due to a karmic debt payable in the future? Sign me up! The last thing I’d want to do is balance my karmic debt and disappear from existence!

    You might claim that doing good will ensure me of good Karma in future lives; why should I care about that guy? All you’ve said is that I can get away with doing bad things now and some other guy who won’t even remember me will pay the price. SIGN ME UP!!

  25. 25
    News says:

    rvb8 at 17: You write:


    NEWS,

    Yes! ‘Fine Tuning’ arguments have come down to this. When I design something I don’t make one side of the box 1.56473m, and the other 1.37856m because that’s stupid and bad design.

    All of the messy constants points to one of two conclusions; that God is a shoody designer, a good designer would make simple round numbers; or, God is constrained by nature, making God part of nature, placing God under the rule of nature, making nature greater than God.

    No other conclusions are possible; Oh sorry, one other conclusion, there is no God, only nature. And I’m just fine with that, actually the alternative is positively frightening for you (but not me), because your God may be the wrong one.

    But this is so dull, I cannot believe that a science teacher wrote it (you are a science teacher, no?). You should check to see if someone has wormed into your system and is posting in your name.

    First, “round numbers” exist only in our own heads. Numbers we can easily think about are round numbers to us.

    A universe designed by a Grade 12 English and Drama major would feature all round numbers, to be sure. It wouldn’t work, but neither, usually, do her play scripts (interesting but not actable).

    So, very well, we have a universe that works fine but was not designed to be easy for a person who dropped all her maths after Grade 10 to understand. It’s conceivable that making it easy for her to get by without study was not a priority.

    You write, “When I design something I don’t make one side of the box 1.56473m, and the other 1.37856m because that’s stupid and bad design.”

    My brother-in-law, a custom carpenter, has often worked on unusual projects. Whether design is bad depends on its relationship to intended function, not on what the numbers look like apart from function. But surely you knew that.

  26. 26
    asauber says:

    I cannot believe that a science teacher wrote it (you are a science teacher, no?).

    Present a man with a stupid idea and he might reject it, based on experience.

    Teach a child to be stupid and you’ll just have to wait awhile to have your stupid man.

    Andrew

  27. 27
    kairosfocus says:

    RVB8, meanwhile, this is still there to deal with, illustrating the problem with the strawman demand for “round numbers”:

    Try to get an exact whole number of teeth on a gear without dealing in irrationals starting with c = 2 * pi * r. Likewise for growth linked to a rate on current mass and frequency related phenomena, without running into e or its close relatives.

    And BTW, round numbers in general are a product of power series sums, so are transcendentals like pi and e, just these will not sit with any place value notation scheme based on a whole number base.

    KF

    PPS: Cf also 5 – 8 above which you also studiously avoided.

  28. 28
    Andere Stimme says:

    For that matter, what kind of shoddy designer decided that the standard dimensions of a pine board would be 2.4384m x 0.3048m? Obviously, board dimensions were determined by blind, pitiless nature.

  29. 29
    jerry says:

    KF,

    To throw a wrench into the gears and getting down to the actual nitty gritty.

    If gravitational constants, the velocity of light, atomic forces, and Pi were all easy
    round numbers, then that would point to design

    I have a question. Does anything exist in reality except integers or round numbers?

    Are the only numbers that actually exist in the physical world, whole or round numbers because all that exist are individual discrete entities? Do irrational numbers such as pi,e, square root of 2, etc. only exist in the abstract? I was a mathematics major and know the usefulness of irrational numbers as well as imaginary numbers. Just as infinity is a necessity in math, it really does not exist in the real world.

    Is it impossible to draw in our universe a true circle, or a right triangle with two equal sides? Will it always be an incredibly small bit off because all that exist are individual entities which are positionally restrained? If the physical universe is composed of a finite number of particles and their possible position from each other is somehow determined in exact distances even though these distances are extremely small, does that mean we will never be able to draw the perfect circle or the perfect right triangle. How can one have a circle when there are only discrete particles which are not continuous. We can certainly come incredibly close to drawing a circle but can it actually be done if we had to get down to the level of individual particles which we can’t. Because a true drawing requires the use of the positions of the finite particles. Do quarks or what are the basic particles actually have physical dimensions?

    If the universe is the sum of individual entities and if these entities are restricted on where they can be positioned relative to each other, then does that impose limitations on what actual numbers that can exist physically? We can imagine the space between two of these entities but can anything actually exist there? And what role does waves have in all this? Are waves continuous or they too composed of discrete elements that look like they are continuous?

    I am sure there are lots of issues but the brining up of round numbers is an absurd objection to design when all that may exist are round numbers.

    Does this mean that all the physical constants that affect how the universe operates, are really whole numbers and we will never have the tools to actually measure exactly what they are?

    I am just throwing this out as a possible description of reality when I am sure a particle or quantum physicist might have a much different understanding.

    Are the elements of the universe sort like what Plato described in his cave, imperfect elements to a form that exists only in the abstract.

    This really has nothing to do with the discussion in general but somehow it got into the discussion.

  30. 30
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, numbers, whole or not, are logical properties tied to structures and quantities. Once the logic is there, any number is as good as another. The capital example is the relationship 0 = 1 + e^i*pi, which locks whole domains together in an utterly exact coherence. I have already spoken to the challenge of cutting gears, which inherently brings up irrationals — and yes, good enough precision and tolerance are relevant. Physical instantiations and operations are almost never exact in relevant cases, but that just goes to underscore that logical relations are as real as physical ones. I here think of two radios I have, one a superhet and the other a DSP chip that directly calculates the output. The latter is superior. Where, I think the best short summary of what math is, is the logic of structure and quantity. As for the half-square triangle, at small enough scales the uncertainty principle comes to bear, but even that obeys mathematical patterns. We cannot physically instantiate a point particle, even in the classical realm [finite mass m in zero volume . . . ], but the ideal is useful. KF

  31. 31
    Jammer says:

    I believe what rvb8 meant to say was:

    “Firstly, poorly-educated atheists, like me, do not admit an appearance of fine tuning.”

    As kairosfocus conclusively proved, educated atheists fully accept the fine-tuning of the cosmos.

  32. 32
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Here are some numbers on a highly successful design, the SMLE:

    Length of barrel 25 3/16 inches.
    Calibre .303 inch.
    Rifling Enfield
    Grooves, number 5
    depth at muzzle .0065 inch.
    depth at breech, to within
    14 inches of muzzle .005 inch.
    Width of lands .0936 inch.
    Twist of rifling, left-handed 1 turn in 10 ins.
    Sighting system Adjustable barley
    corn front sight, radial back sight.
    Distance between barleycorn
    and back sight, V 1 ft. 7 5/32 ins.
    Length of rifle 3 ft. 8 9/16 ins.
    Length of rifle with sword-bayonet 4 ft. 8 11/16 ins.
    Length of sword-bayonet (over all) 1 ft. 4 7/8 ins.
    Length of sword-bayonet blade 1 ft. 0 1/8 ins.
    Weight of rifle, with magazine empty 8 lb. 21/2 oz.
    Weight of sword-bayonet 1 lb. 01/2 oz.
    Weight of sword-bayonet scabbard 0 lb. 41/2 oz.
    Ammunition same as for M.L.E., M.L.M., M M., and M.E. arms. [Note, bullets are diameter 0.312 inches]

    From Wiki, on the rounds:

    Americans would define the shoulder angle at alpha/2 ? 17 degrees. The common rifling twist rate for this cartridge is 254 mm (1 in 10 in), 5 grooves, Ø lands = 7.70 millimetres (0.303 in), Ø grooves = 7.92 millimetres (0.312 in), land width = 2.12 millimetres (0.083 in) and the primer type is Berdan or Boxer (in large rifle size).

    According to the official C.I.P. (Commission Internationale Permanente pour l’Epreuve des Armes à Feu Portatives) rulings the .303 British can handle up to 365.00 MPa (52,939 psi) Pmax piezo pressure. In C.I.P. regulated countries every rifle cartridge combo has to be proofed at 125% of this maximum C.I.P. pressure to certify for sale to consumers.[2] This means that .303 British chambered arms in C.I.P. regulated countries are currently (2014) proof tested at 456.00 MPa (66,137 psi) PE piezo pressure.

    The SAAMI (Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute) Maximum Average Pressure (MAP) for this cartridge is 49,000 psi (337.84 MPa) piezo pressure (45,000 CUP).[5]

    The measurement .303-inch (7.70 mm) is the nominal size of the bore measured between the lands which follows the older black powder nomenclature. Measured between the grooves, the nominal size of the bore is .311-inch (7.90 mm). Bores for many .303 military surplus rifles are often found ranging from around .309-inch (7.85 mm) up to .318-inch (8.08 mm). Recommended bullet diameter for standard .303 British cartridges is .312-inch (7.92 mm).

    No sensible person will deny the effectiveness and even dominance of this design, tracing from the 1880’s to the 1950’s and 60’s, with echoes down to today.

    And yet, the numbers, all carefully adapted and tested to work together, simply are almost defiantly not “round.”

    In short, the talking point being used as a red herring to distract from seriously discussing the main issue, is patently fallacious. It is just irrelevant and smacks of being a mark of rhetorical desperation.

    I trust we can now refocus the main issues.

    KF

  33. 33
    rvb8 says:

    NEWS,

    I teach History, Political Culture in the West, occasionally Media Studies, and very occasionally English.

    Secondly my claims to a ‘no God’ universe are just as well supported as the ‘God/Designer’ universe.

    More so, because as has been pointed out again and again, and never really refuted, the ‘God/Designer’ universe must necessarily work outside known physical constraints, and laws.

    Could this be? Sure, but there is no evidence for it, hence the extraordinary claim resides in the ‘God/Designer’ corner, and hence they need extraordinary proof.

    They provide none so I’ll stick with naturalism’s answer.

    Marfin,

    you always confuse me, either you’re extraordinarily brilliant, or the opposite. What do you want me to answer, and why is what I’ve written not an answer?

    You like all IDists are fond of obscure questions, which you often ask in salvoes, why is it you never provide answers or evidence?

    So is the Big Bang in defiance of the law, ‘energy can neither be created nor destroyed’, right?

    Well, why can’t I throw that in God’s face?

    To answer, at first glance yes, but what do I know, and more pointedly what do you know?

    The confidence you evince in God being the answer is as unsupported as the atheist’s answer that the Big Bang just happened; was an event.

    The differance between the two camps is that to atheists it’s an open question, whereas to the religious (like so many other unanswered questions about nature), Goddit!

  34. 34
    rvb8 says:

    Kairos,

    you give a load of Imperial measurements to suggest round numbers are not necessary in good design; that’s because your human designed system is a poor example of good design in measurement systems.

    When good design is employed in measurement systems we do indeed get round numbers; apparently God can’t think one up, but humans can?

    Water melts at 0 degrees Celcius and boils at 100 Celcius.
    tera 10 to the 12th.
    giga 10 to the 9th.
    mega 10 to the 6th.
    kilo 10 to the 3rd.
    hecto 10 to the 2nd.
    deca 10 to the 1st.
    0 none.
    deci 10 to the negative 1st
    Repeat down to atto, 10 to the negative 18th.

    Used in weight; grams/ kilograms etc.
    Distance; mm/kilometre etc.
    Pressure; pascal/kiopascal etc.
    Density; gram/mm cubed; kilogram/m cubed etc
    etc etc, in all areas of measurement and design.

    NASA uses this, all science departments in US universities use this, as do research facilities, and all doctors.

    There is a map showing which countries in the world don’t use this well designed, convenient, simple decimal system in daily life, they are Myanmar, Liberia, and the United States.

    My question Kairos, if humans can design a whole number system for design, why can’t God, or the US government for that matter?

  35. 35
    kairosfocus says:

    RVB8, the SMLE and good design patterns and realities are not under test, you were. And you failed; again. KF

  36. 36
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Let us refocus, does the designer indicated through the design inference on sign need to be God?

    Here is my earlier answer, in a nutshell:

    On evidence in hand, design of life on earth could be accounted for on a molecular nanotech lab several generations beyond Venter. It is fine tuning of the cosmos that calls for a designer capable of building such a cosmos, and then we see how it is fine tuned for C-Chem, aqueous medium life.

    And BTW, Sir Fred Hoyle (who readily qualified as both atheist and well qualified to comment on cosmology), took the evident fine-tuning seriously. Indeed, he is one of the first to have noticed, c. 1953.

    KF

  37. 37
    john_a_designer says:

    I don’t think there is any way to answer an incorrigible cynic. They are too blinded by their own ingrown thinking to see the world any other way.

  38. 38
    rvb8 says:

    j_a_d,

    “I don’t think there is any way to answer a religious person. They are too blinded by their own scientifically unsupported faith to see the world any other way.”

    Try this; Jesus defied gravity, mortality,and the first law of thermodynamics, (the loaves and fishes).

    Marfin says can the Big Bang defy ‘1st law’? Don’t know, neither does he, can’t know neither can he. When I ask can God defy this law, the clear answer is yes, Jesus did! Does that still make it a law, or ‘best practices’?

    Why can’t God do absolutely anything if this creation is his? He is constrained by his own laws? Tempting. But he made them, presumably he can unmake them. Why can’t God the omnipotent, omniscient, the omnipresent do anything he wills? And if not is he below these laws, making Nature God’s God.

    This is just where these silly, ‘what was before the Big Bang/God arguments take you; nowhere. Except of course into meaningless theological speculation as profitable to knowledge as Aquinas’s attempt to calculate how many angels could dance on a pin head.

    It is entertaining viewing however.

  39. 39
    Marfin says:

    Rvb8-As my friend tells me ” you should have been a genius”
    rvb8 the problem is you want to have your cake and eat it too, when we mention God or miracles you scream the laws of science, when we mention that what materialists teach goes contrary to the laws of science you say well so does God.
    Now you cannot say the material world and the materialist definition of science is all there is and then hold me and my arguments to this standard but not you and your arguments.
    I don`t believe the material world and the materialist definition of science is all there is , and I dont believe this because of the evidence from science and the natural world.
    The universe and all it contains is a creation of either natural or a supernatural event , if you disagree show me a third possibility.
    So if you are on the materialist fence ,then answer the question if matter cannot be created or destroyed (in a purely material world ) then who or what created matter.
    RVB8– You can believe there is no God , you can believe the universe popped into existence from nothing , you can believe life popped into existence from non living materials, you can believe that every living creature we see around us evolved from Hydrogen gas , you can believe, but dont call it scientific , dont call it fact , and don`t say we are the only ones who believe in miracles

  40. 40
    kairosfocus says:

    RVB8, it is clear that you have some serious re-thinking to do, and in so doing you need to be looking at plumb line self-evident truths; you seem to be using a crooked, inaccurate yardstick, which means that genuine truth — which already matches reality — cannot match the flawed yardstick. I suggest you do so before you go over a cliff and suffer serious consequences. I suggest that further rhetorical gambits such as the turnabout stunt you just tried on JAD are only highlighting even more that you have little more in hand than a rhetorical bag of agit prop tricks. I suggest, again, that here on will prove helpful. KF

    PS: A very good description of omnipotence, FYI, is precisely that God has power to do anything in accord with his holy will. This means he will do no evil (he is inherently good), and that it is no limitation that he cannot create a logically impossible being, he is communicative reason himself. And, that he would create creatures capable of creative love (which requires responsible, rational freedom) in no wise requires him to slice off or alienate or use up some of that power.

    PPS: I remain astonished at how often people seem to imagine that physical laws are logically necessary. The fine tuning evidence etc point elsewhere. And, no inductive procedure can demonstrate that a generalisation is without exception. Indeed, on miracles, we see that God sustains the general order of the world (necessary for responsible freedom) but reserves the right to act in accord with a higher purpose for his own good reason. There is nothing irrational or silly in believing that the author of life could raise Jesus from the dead in accord with prophecy written down 700 years ahead, with 500 witnesses who could not be turned.

  41. 41
    critical rationalist says:

    Barry Arrington: Bob, have you ever heard the old saw “there’s no such thing as a stupid question?” It is false. Stupid questions abound. The one you just asked is one of them. As has been pointed out on these pages 1,303,261 times (all of which apparently sailed right over your head), the design inference is independent of the provenance of the designer.

    That’s the thing, It hasn’t sailed over my head.

    Design isn’t abstract property. It’s not just will, or intent. While that might have seemed reasonable hundreds of years ago, we know so much more about how designers accomplish their goals that you’re might as well have said fire has the property of dryness.

    So, it’s unclear how you can say design is independent of a designer unless you’re making some implicit assumptions you haven’t disclosed.

    For example,

  42. 42
    critical rationalist says:

    For example…

    …I’d like to design a drug to cure cancer. However, regardless of what intention or purpose I had in formulating any such drug, it would only actually cure cancer if the necessary knowledge of what transformations of matter required to do so were actually present in it when administered. My mere desire, enthusiasm or benevolent intent are insufficient to actually cure cancer. Right? So, it’s unclear why knowledge is “not necessary with regards to a designer” and biological organism.

    So, it’s insufficient to merely point to “design” as an abstract property. I’m a designer, yet I’m unable to cure cancer.

    However, ID’s designer is abstract and has no defined limitations. As such it’s not limited by what it knows, when it knew it, what resources or time has at it’s disposal, etc. So, it’s not limited from rewriting an application, in it’s entirety, for every single customer, to meet their specific needs that day. And the same could be said about designing computers. Entire one-off operating systems could be written for each one-off computer built for each customer, along with one-off versions off each application to run on them.

    Nor is ID’s designer limited from creating one-off programming languages for each customer’s application.

    To use another example, we currently do not design entirely new automobiles every year because doing so is simply too resource intensive, expensive, etc. It’s simply not practical. Even then, new models often reuse existing parts and even the same power train because next gen engines need to be long term tested on the track, etc. Manufactures must price their cars so customers will by them, so they can make a profit. They must report to their shareholders and request R&D budgets.

    However, ID’s designer would not be limited from designing an entirely new model, from the ground up for every single vehicle. This is because it has no limitations on what it knows, such as if a design is crash worthy, if it has long term engineering issues, etc. It has no customers, competitors, shareholders, R&D budgets .etc. Nor is it limited from designing automobiles in the order of most complex to least, or even all at once.

    IOW, what you’re appealing to are today’s human designers, and human beings could not have designed themselves. Even then, that appeal won’t hold.

    At some point in the future, assuming we create the necessary knowledge in time to prevent ourselves from going extinct, we’ll use exponentially more powerful computers that we have now to create one off systems and products for each customer, in conjunction with vastly more capable manufacturing systems which make 3D printing look like child’s play. The need for reuse will simply be virtually nonexistent. Heck, customers will do it in their own homes and garages. So will their *children*.

    IOW, you greatly underestimate the role that knowledge, or the lack there off, plays in design. Human beings are good explanations for human deigned things, precisely because of our current limitations.

    So, it’s unclear how details about the designer, such as what they knew and when they knew it would be irrelevant to what they supposedly designed.

    Of course, since the designer could not be God if it’s methods, means etc. could be explained, it would come as no surprise that theists would want to artificially limit ID.

    Furthermore, good explanations have reach beyond the immediate problem space. They cannot be contained because you find them inconvenient to one’s theological beliefs.

  43. 43
    Phinehas says:

    I teach History, Political Culture in the West, occasionally Media Studies, and very occasionally English.

    I suppose we can all breathe a sigh of relief on behalf of your students that Mathematics are not on this list. Or science.

  44. 44
    rvb8 says:

    Phinehas,

    you can breathe in relief.

    I am interested in a subject, evolution. I research that subject by visiting the best minds on that subject; available on the inter-net, hence, the world.

    I find that subject in no debate whatsoever about the causes and reasons for this Darwinian observed process.

    I visit sites such as this to view the theological, and very poorly concieved philosophical reactions:

    Life is good:)

  45. 45
    StephenB says:

    rvb8,

    The who designed the designer question, simply notes that God’s answer, “I am that I am”, aside from being an unprovable tautology, is also a lazy answer.

    It is not a lazy answer, it is a lazy question. No one designed the designer if the designer is God. Do you understand why the causeless cause cannot be designed?

    I don’t know what existed before the Big Bang, and as the Big Bang created time and space, and as time and space are requirements for existance I would say nothing existed; but then of course you must ask, what made time and space?

    If “something made time and space,” then obviously something existed before time and space. If something did not make time and space, then time and space made itself. Are you arguing for the second option?

  46. 46
    StephenB says:

    “But are there no other options? What about this?: The laws that create fine-tuning, however they came to be, are the basis of the universe. The universe is their possibly inevitable outcome.

    Law-like regularities cannot create anything; they can only repeat their behavior. In order to bring something new into existence, the cause must decide to stop not creating and begin to create. Only an intelligent agent can do that. What we call “laws” cannot make decisions or change their behavior.

  47. 47

    SB, a pleasant surprise. I hope all is well.

  48. 48

    I am interested in a subject, evolution. I research that subject

    And yet, you have no interest in what is physically required for evolution to occur.

  49. 49
    critical rationalist says:

    @StephanB

    There are to options: either the designer / God created the universe the way it is on a whim, which explains nothing, or it created the universe the way that it is because of necessary reason X, in which case reason X explains why the universe is the way it is, not the designer / God.

  50. 50
    StephenB says:

    critical rationalist,

    There are to options: either the designer / God created the universe the way it is on a whim, which explains nothing, or it created the universe the way that it is because of necessary reason X, in which case reason X explains why the universe is the way it is, not the designer / God.

    You have changed the subject altogether. The point is that a law cannot create anything. That power is reserved for an intelligent agent.

    Meanwhile, to address your new subject, you are clearly wrong to say that identifying the cause of the universe explains “nothing.”

    If an intelligent agent created the universe from nothing, then that agent would be the *efficient cause* of the *fact* of its existence. This can be known through unaided reason, and it is definitely an “explanation.”

    To know the *reason* for its existence would also constitute an explanation, though of a different kind (final cause); but that can be known only through revelation.

  51. 51
    StephenB says:

    UB @47,

    Greetings back to you.

  52. 52
    rvb8 says:

    StepheB,

    “Do you understand why the causless cause can not be designed?”

    Umm, No! What the hell is a ‘causless cause’? If its not there, it can not cause anything! Unless you bring in faith, or religion, then it makes perfect sense.

    You’re not dealing with yokels here SB. We want reasons, facts, evidence, experimentation, provable concepts. Not empty wooo.

    ‘Causless cause?’ Grow up! Fairytales were left behind by me at age 12.

  53. 53
    StephenB says:

    SB: “Do you understand why the causless cause can not be designed?”

    rvb8

    Umm, No! What the hell is a ‘causless cause’

    A causeless cause is the first cause in a chain of causes and effects. Think of the train’s engine, for example, as the first cause of the movement of a series of box cars. It is not moved by anything else but it is responsible for all the other movements.

    If its not there, it can not cause anything! Unless you bring in faith, or religion, then it makes perfect sense.

    That the universe, as an effect, requires a first cause, and that the first cause must be a causeless cause, has nothing to do with “faith” or “religion.” It is simply a matter of logic.

    You’re not dealing with yokels here SB. We want reasons, facts, evidence, experimentation, provable concepts. Not empty wooo.

    You don’t need evidence to know that effects require causes and the the universe, as an effect, requires a first cause, which must also be a causeless cause. Indeed, no amount of evidence can either confirm or negate the point. That is why it is stupid for anyone to ask, “Who designed God?” in the context of a scientific discussion about the fine tuning of the universe. In keeping with that point, I invite everyone to refrain from asking the question, “Who tuned the tuner?”

    ‘Causless cause?’ Grow up! Fairytales were left behind by me at age 12.

    I can provide the requisite remedial education, but I cannot help you control your emotions.

  54. 54
    Vy says:

    Very insightful post SB @53

    I invite everyone to refrain from asking the question, “Who tuned the tuner?”

    – Who tasted the taster?
    – Who cooked the cook?
    – Who sang the singer?

    It does look far more daft when you put it like that.

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