Intelligent Design Mind

Stephen Hawking, Darwinists, and Losing (or Finding) One’s Mind

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Hawking says that nothing created everything. If nothing is nothing, it creates nothing, otherwise nothing is not nothing, it is something.

The “nothing created everything” hypothesis is just as illogical as the claim that random errors can produce complex information-processing systems with error-detection-and-repair technology in living things — the Darwinian thesis.

Have I lost my mind and ability to think logically, or have Darwinists and people like Hawking lost theirs?

I suggest that the latter is the case, because I was once included in their number. I did lose my mind, but eventually found it.

63 Replies to “Stephen Hawking, Darwinists, and Losing (or Finding) One’s Mind

  1. 1
    noam_ghish says:

    either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.

    any one concrete thing can come from nothing. the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.

    any one abstract thing, however, can not come from nothing, because abstract concept describe groups of things, such as order or beauty. i do not believe order can come from nothing. only a mind can order things, material cannot order itself. i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.

  2. 2
    Ilion says:

    Noan_Ghish:either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.

    No, they are not both absurd and illogical. The first is absurd and illogical; the second disputes/contradicts the first.

  3. 3
    kairosfocus says:

    NG:

    Re: either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here

    In this context, nothing is a true nothing not even a vacuum (which BTW has measurable properties). That something should come from nothing is nonsensical indeed.

    However, take 2 + 3 = 5.

    Can you conceive of a possible world in which the truth expresses in those symbols would be false?

    You cannot.

    This truth is an example of a being that has no external causal dependence, and is thus a necessary being. It never began, it can not cease, and it is independent of external factors.

    By actual example, this concept of that which always was and always will be is shown NOT to be absurd; unexpected maybe, even strange, but not absurd — no more so than 1 + e^pi*i = 0, perhaps the most astonishing single theorem in Maths. (BTW, traditionally, Christian theists have held that true propositions like this have eternally been held in the mind of God. FYI.)

    As I discuss here and here in more details, our observed cosmos credibly began, and is contingent, not necessary. Its causal root will be a necessary being, even through a multiverse.

    Likewise, even through the same multiverse speculation, the evident fine tuning of our cosmos that sets it at a finely balanced operating point that supports C chemistry cell based life, points to that necessary being also having purpose, skill, knowledge and capacity to create such a cosmos.

    GEM of TKI

  4. 4
    Brent says:

    @noam_ghish,

    either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical . . .

    Only for those who assume materialism to be true. And on that point, it is worth noting that believing in something always existing only gives gas to the materialist if by “something”, they mean God. An always existing universe is something they would really like to be able to believe.

    any one concrete thing can come from nothing. the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.

    Umm . . . This is nonsense. You refute this in your next paragraph anyway, as law is certainly abstract and only describes how physical things operate. And if law only describes how physical things operate, and there is nothing, then there is no law, but only in a sense. The problem is that because we do have laws that tell us how things operate, we by extension have a “law” that tells us how nothing operates also. If we could create a bubble inside of which literally nothing existed, the “law” from nothing, nothing comes, would still exist and apply. It could only be held by minds outside that bubble, but it would apply to the inside of the bubble nonetheless.

    any one abstract thing, however, can not come from nothing, because abstract concept describe groups of things,

    I think your use of “abstract” is equivocal here. Again, the bubble example above. The abstract, being an idea, “exists” and applies inside the bubble. In the abstract sense, then, inside the bubble some “thing” “exists”. Now, if you don’t want to talk about bubbles, but rather actually nothing at all existing anywhere, then we have nothing to talk about.

    But again, this is a problem for the materialist.

  5. 5
    Collin says:

    Gil,
    If you are going crazy then so am I. I couldn’t believe that Hawkins would say that the universe would create itself out of nothing.

    I do believe that something can exist eternally because it seems clear to me that there was a “time” before time began. If anything existed “before” time, then it must have been outside of time and not subject to the laws of entropy. Therefore it is not illogical that something exist eternally because there’s no “time” to subject it to entropy.

  6. 6
    junkdnaforlife says:

    Hawking’s nothing is not nothing, it is gravity and virtual particles in a vacuum. Bringing up God and “universe from nothing” is a sensationalized way to get people to watch the show. Hawking’s best scientific days are behind him, and he is slowly becoming just another ideological crusader similar to Dawkins.

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    Of related note: I liked what Professor Woit said recently about all this unsubstantiated speculation:

    ‘It’s well-known that one can find Stephen Hawking’s initials, and just about any other pattern one can think of somewhere in the CMB data.,, So, the bottom line is that they see nothing, but a press release has been issued about how wonderful it is that they have looked for evidence of a Multiverse, without mentioning that they found nothing.’ – Peter Woit
    http://www.math.columbia.edu/~.....ss/?p=3879

  8. 8
    noam_ghish says:

    @ Kairofocus,

    [This truth is an example of a being that has no external causal dependence, and is thus a necessary being. It never began, it can not cease, and it is independent of external factors]

    That’s just an assertion. You have no proof that something that exists, never began

    [Likewise, even through the same multiverse speculation, the evident fine tuning of our cosmos that sets it at a finely balanced operating point that supports C chemistry cell based life, points to that necessary being also having purpose, skill, knowledge and capacity to create such a cosmos]

    I agree that fine tuning points to an intelligent designer, but it does not point to the existence of anything being eternal.

  9. 9
    noam_ghish says:

    I guess I’ll take a break from arguing with atheists and debate with fellow IDers for a change. I’m tired of the rudeness of atheists.

    [Only for those who assume materialism to be true. And on that point, it is worth noting that believing in something always existing only gives gas to the materialist if by “something”, they mean God. An always existing universe is something they would really like to be able to believe.]

    if it could be shown that something had always existed or if something came from nothing, i don’t think that proves atheism or theism. for example, i personally prefer the something came from nothing scenario though i admit that i can’t prove it. something cannot order itself, you need a mind to order something.

    {any one concrete thing can come from nothing. the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.}
    [Umm . . . This is nonsense. You refute this in your next paragraph anyway, as law is certainly abstract and only describes how physical things operate. And if law only describes how physical things operate, and there is nothing, then there is no law, but only in a sense. The problem is that because we do have laws that tell us how things operate, we by extension have a “law” that tells us how nothing operates also.]
    If you believe that only a finite set of things can come from nothing then you’re imposing a law on that space that is nothing. You’re describing how that space operates. Let me state this logically.
    1. law is that which describes how things operate
    2. if nothing exists, then nothing can describe how it operates
    3. you posit, that only a through z can come from that nothing
    4. the words: “only a through z” is a description of how things operate
    5. therefore, you’re describing how nothing operates
    6. therefore, you’re using a law to describe nothing

    [If we could create a bubble inside of which literally nothing existed, the “law” from nothing, nothing comes, would still exist and apply. It could only be held by minds outside that bubble, but it would apply to the inside of the bubble nonetheless.]

    You’re assuming that the law ex nihilo nihil fit is true. You haven’t proven that it’s true.

    {any one abstract thing, however, can not come from nothing, because abstract concept describe groups of things}
    [I think your use of “abstract” is equivocal here. Again, the bubble example above. The abstract, being an idea, “exists” and applies inside the bubble. In the abstract sense, then, inside the bubble some “thing” “exists”. Now, if you don’t want to talk about bubbles, but rather actually nothing at all existing anywhere, then we have nothing to talk about.]
    abstract concepts describe physical things. beauty for example describes m monroe. abstract concepts cannot describe nothing and when i say nothing, i don’t mean nothing inside of something. i mean nothing at all, anywhere.

  10. 10
    noam_ghish says:

    @ collin,
    but thanks for the phrase: laws describe how things operate. i hadn’t thought of that.

  11. 11
    Ilion says:

    Noam Ghish:I guess I’ll take a break from arguing with atheists and debate with fellow IDers for a change.

    Oh? Do you mean hand-waving … sorry … arguing, like this — “That’s just an assertion. You have no proof that something that exists, never began

  12. 12
    noam_ghish says:

    Ilion,

    let’s see your proof. it’s on the burden of the person that makes the assertion to prove it. asking someone to prove their assertions is not hand waving.

  13. 13
    Ilion says:

    If you don’t quite have the candle-power to grasp the proof you’ve already been given, there is really nothing I do to help you. If that is your case, then you ought to spare yourself the embarrassment of trying to dispute anything with most of the regulars here.

    Ignoring the proof you have been given, waving away the argument already provided as being merely assertion, while demanding “Prove it again!”, is exactly what hand-waving is.

  14. 14
    noam_ghish says:

    I haven’t seen any proof beyond mere assertions. It’s the others who are hand-waving not me.

    [If that is your case, then you ought to spare yourself the embarrassment of trying to dispute anything with most of the regulars here.]
    That’s just an ad hom attack. I can see that you don’t know how to distinguish between a logical argument and an illogical one.

  15. 15
    uoflcard says:

    Hawking also said in his documentary on the Discovery Channel that “we don’t know how life started, but I think it was probably by accident”. How he can assign a probability to an event that we haven’t even theoretically considered beyond basic imagination is beyond me. His commentary on cosmology is fascinating – I can listen to it all night. His commentary on the genesis of life, and of the importance or significance of human life and intelligence is intellectually disgusting, to me. Human intellect is a treasure, yet he seems to view it as some sort of virus that is in need of natural selection.

  16. 16
    Scruffy says:

    let’s see your proof. it’s on the burden of the person that makes the assertion to prove it. asking someone to prove their assertions is not hand waving.

    In a case like this where we’re not dealing with something simple like how a car comes into being, it’s more about weighing the evidence and using a bit of logic/reason.

    People seem to have this idea that things that don’t exist are waiting behind a black current and then, when the time is right, the current is pulled.

    The reality is that there is no object hiding behind the curtain, because there is no curtain.

    We know that contingent things that begin to exist have a cause for their existence. This is fact and there are no observations that say otherwise.

    either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.

    There’s a third option that is as absurd as something coming from nothing, infinite regression.

    An eternal something is only absurd and illogical if we try to fit it within our universe of time, space, and matter.

    any one concrete thing can come from nothing.

    The evidence for this I would like to see. Every experience we have tells us the exact opposite of what you write. I’m not quite sure what you mean by “concrete things”, presumably something physical or something that’s not an abstraction.

    the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.

    A natural law, as Brent pointed out, is an abstraction. A description of the inharent properties of matter.

    There is no law if there is no matter.

    i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.

    Why is it that a mind can come from nothing yet matter cannot? There are rules to what can and can not come from nothing?

    What is governing the nothingness from which minds come from? If there is something governing nothing, that governing entity is not nothing ergo, something exists.

    Or does nothing have inherent properties as well?

    If a mind can pop into existence, uncaused, out of nothing, than there is no reason pizza, or people, or TVs, or any other piece of matter cannot pop into existence from nothing.

    abstract concepts cannot describe nothing and when i say nothing, i don’t mean nothing inside of something. i mean nothing at all, anywhere.

    It sure sounds like your saying “nothing inside of something.”

    Taking everything we know, current knowledge says there is no evidence that something can come from nothing and thus, there is no reason to assume it can.

    What else are we left with?

  17. 17
    lamarck says:

    From is the word in the idea that something can’t come from nothing, which makes it a self evident truth. From denotes a space, simple as that.

  18. 18
    NZer says:

    His commentary on cosmology is fascinating – I can listen to it all night. His commentary on the genesis of life, and of the importance or significance of human life and intelligence is intellectually disgusting, to me. Human intellect is a treasure, yet he seems to view it as some sort of virus that is in need of natural selection.

    One of the saddest aspects of this for me is the internal inconsistency of Hawking et al. Brilliant when he sticks to the facts; an idiot when he gets into philosophy. The big picture suddenly loses its beauty and coherence and turns into an ugly mess.

  19. 19
    Ilion says:

    … i do not believe order can come from nothing. only a mind can order things, material cannot order itself. i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.

    Oh, my! And to think, the sort of fellow who says something like this, abd wo clearly doesn’t even understand what ‘ad hominem‘ means, imagines he’s going to school me on logic. Amazing.

    So, would a “mind” which came from nothing be made of nothing? If so, that seems to me an even worse state than a mind which is empty. It’s a fascinating conundrum, don’t you think? On the one hand, to know what a thing is made of is not necessarily to know what the thing is; on the other hand, nothing is no-thing, whatsoever.

    And, consider the meaning of the quotation — ‘order’ cannot come from nothing; yet, ‘minds’, which are greater than order, and which can impose order where none is, can come from nothing.

  20. 20
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    The postulated alternative to “nothing can create everything” is “a mind can create everything” right?

    From which it follows that minds can exist without being created?

    Do I have this right?

  21. 21
    William J. Murray says:

    The postulated alternative to “effects can be generated from nothing” infinite regress and “effects can cause themselves” is “an uncaused cause can generate effects”.

    The only “uncaused cause” that we accept as such in every-day life, and live as if true on a practical, daily basis, is mind. It is why we assign personal responsibility to acts committed by individuals under all ordinary circumstances.

    We do not live on a practical, day-to-day basis as if infinite regression is true, or as if nothing can cause effects, or as if effects can cause themselves.

    The only reason that mind is discarded by materialists as an uncaused cause is because it interferes with their ideology. They intellectually argue for that which they cannot live as if true in any practical way.

    Ironically, that they are arguing necessarily assumes that what they are arguing is untrue.

    I wouldn’t say that materialists have lost their mind; I’d say they either never had one to begin with and are the biological automatons they believe themselves to be, or they willingly abandoned their mind for some reason or another.

  22. 22
    bornagain77 says:

    What Atheists Just Don’t Get – Video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3192755/

    =================

    notes:

    ,,,and contrary to Hawking’s unsubstantiated speculations, the theist has actual evidence for his beliefs:

    ,,, from the best scientific evidence we now have we have very good reason to believe that the entire universe came into origination at the Big Bang. Not only was all mass-energy brought into being, but space-time itself was also brought into being at the Big Bang!!! Thus it logically follows that whatever brought the universe into being had to be transcendent of space-time, mass-energy. Yet the only thing that we know of that is completely transcendent of space-time, matter-energy is information. Thus the question becomes did information bring space-time, mass-energy into being?,,, simple enough question, but how do we prove it? It turns out that quantum teleportation breakthroughs have shed light directly on this question!,,, Here are a few experiments establishing the ‘information theoretic’ origin of this universe, as well as establishing the information theoretic ‘sustaining’ of this universe;

    How Teleportation Will Work –
    Excerpt: In 1993, the idea of teleportation moved out of the realm of science fiction and into the world of theoretical possibility. It was then that physicist Charles Bennett and a team of researchers at IBM confirmed that quantum teleportation was possible, but only if the original object being teleported was destroyed. — As predicted, the original photon no longer existed once the replica was made.

    Quantum Teleportation – IBM Research Page
    Excerpt: “it would destroy the original (photon) in the process,,”
    http://www.research.ibm.com/qu.....portation/

    Explaining Information Transfer in Quantum Teleportation: Armond Duwell †‡ University of Pittsburgh
    Excerpt: In contrast to a classical bit, the description of a (photon) qubit requires an infinite amount of information. The amount of information is infinite because two real numbers are required in the expansion of the state vector of a two state quantum system (Jozsa 1997, 1) — Concept 2. is used by Bennett, et al. Recall that they infer that since an infinite amount of information is required to specify a (photon) qubit, an infinite amount of information must be transferred to teleport.
    http://www.cas.umt.edu/phil/fa.....lPSA2K.pdf

    ,,,This following experiment shows that the teleportation of ‘infinite’ information is instantaneous;,,,

    Researchers Succeed in Quantum Teleportation of Light Waves – April 2011
    Excerpt: In this experiment, researchers in Australia and Japan were able to transfer quantum information from one place to another without having to physically move it. It was destroyed in one place and instantly resurrected in another, “alive” again and unchanged. This is a major advance, as previous teleportation experiments were either very slow or caused some information to be lost.
    http://www.popsci.com/technolo.....-computing

    ,,,Whereas this experiment shows that quantum information is ‘conserved’,,,

    Quantum no-hiding theorem experimentally confirmed for first time
    Excerpt: In the classical world, information can be copied and deleted at will. In the quantum world, however, the conservation of quantum information means that information cannot be created nor destroyed. This concept stems from two fundamental theorems of quantum mechanics: the no-cloning theorem and the no-deleting theorem. A third and related theorem, called the no-hiding theorem, addresses information loss in the quantum world. According to the no-hiding theorem, if information is missing from one system (which may happen when the system interacts with the environment), then the information is simply residing somewhere else in the Universe; in other words, the missing information cannot be hidden in the correlations between a system and its environment.
    http://www.physorg.com/news/20.....tally.html

    ,,,The following articles show that even atoms (Ions) are subject to ‘instantaneous’ teleportation:,,,

    Ions have been teleported successfully for the first time by two independent research groups
    Excerpt: In fact, copying isn’t quite the right word for it. In order to reproduce the quantum state of one atom in a second atom, the original has to be destroyed. This is unavoidable – it is enforced by the laws of quantum mechanics, which stipulate that you can’t ‘clone’ a quantum state. In principle, however, the ‘copy’ can be indistinguishable from the original (that was destroyed),,,
    http://www.rsc.org/chemistrywo.....ammeup.asp

    Atom takes a quantum leap – 2009
    Excerpt: Ytterbium ions have been ‘teleported’ over a distance of a metre.,,,
    “What you’re moving is information, not the actual atoms,” says Chris Monroe, from the Joint Quantum Institute at the University of Maryland in College Park and an author of the paper. But as two particles of the same type differ only in their quantum states, the transfer of quantum information is equivalent to moving the first particle to the location of the second.
    http://www.freerepublic.com/fo.....1769/posts

    ,,,Moreover, when the wave state (superposition), which is defined as infinite information, collapses to its particle state, it turns out that the particle state can only convey one bit of information to any particular observer in the universe at a time:

    Zeilinger’s principle
    The principle that any elementary system carries just one bit of information. This principle was put forward by the Austrian physicist Anton Zeilinger in 1999 and subsequently developed by him to derive several aspects of quantum mechanics.
    http://science.jrank.org/pages.....z17a7f88PM

    Why the Quantum? It from Bit? A Participatory Universe?
    Excerpt: In conclusion, it may very well be said that information is the irreducible kernel from which everything else flows. Thence the question why nature appears quantized is simply a consequence of the fact that information itself is quantized by necessity. It might even be fair to observe that the concept that information is fundamental is very old knowledge of humanity, witness for example the beginning of gospel according to John: “In the beginning was the Word.” Anton Zeilinger – a leading expert in quantum teleportation:

    ,,,moreover, encoded information, such as we find encoded in computers, and yes, such as we find encoded in DNA, is found to be a subset of ‘conserved’ quantum information:

    Quantum knowledge cools computers: New understanding of entropy – June 2011
    Excerpt: No heat, even a cooling effect;
    In the case of perfect classical knowledge of a computer memory (zero entropy), deletion of the data requires in theory no energy at all. The researchers prove that “more than complete knowledge” from quantum entanglement with the memory (negative entropy) leads to deletion of the data being accompanied by removal of heat from the computer and its release as usable energy. This is the physical meaning of negative entropy.
    Renner emphasizes, however, “This doesn’t mean that we can develop a perpetual motion machine.” The data can only be deleted once, so there is no possibility to continue to generate energy. The process also destroys the entanglement, and it would take an input of energy to reset the system to its starting state. The equations are consistent with what’s known as the second law of thermodynamics: the idea that the entropy of the universe can never decrease. Vedral says “We’re working on the edge of the second law. If you go any further, you will break it.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....134300.htm

    John 1:1-3
    In the beginning, the Word existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made.

    etc.. etc..

  23. 23
    kairosfocus says:

    WJM:

    The mind is self-moved.

    As with much else in Plato, there lurk deep subtleties there.

    G

  24. 24
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    William:

    The postulated alternative to “effects can be generated from nothing” infinite regress and “effects can cause themselves” is “an uncaused cause can generate effects”.

    The only “uncaused cause” that we accept as such in every-day life, and live as if true on a practical, daily basis, is mind. It is why we assign personal responsibility to acts committed by individuals under all ordinary circumstances.

    Well, we may accept it “as if true” for some practical purposes, for other practical purposes we do not (declaring a person dead, for instance). But it’s possible to regard mind as caused (actually as both caused and causal in a tight coupling) and still assign personal responsibility.

    We do not live on a practical, day-to-day basis as if infinite regression is true, or as if nothing can cause effects, or as if effects can cause themselves.

    We don’t need to regress infinitely. Even if we do (and I do) posit that brains cause minds, then it seems perfectly reasonable to assume the neurons started it, and that once the neurons stop, mind will cease.

    The only reason that mind is discarded by materialists as an uncaused cause is because it interferes with their ideology. They intellectually argue for that which they cannot live as if true in any practical way.

    No, not at all. Take me, for instance.

    Ironically, that they are arguing necessarily assumes that what they are arguing is untrue.

    No it doesn’t.

    I wouldn’t say that materialists have lost their mind; I’d say they either never had one to begin with and are the biological automatons they believe themselves to be, or they willingly abandoned their mind for some reason or another.

    Of course materialists have minds, and of course they believe they have minds.

    This is a straw man 🙂

  25. 25
    William J. Murray says:

    Elizabeth,

    I don’t argue with the rustling of leaves, and I don’t debate the happenstance firings of neurons. Though either might produce interesting or amusing noises, I don’t consider either capable of rational debate.

  26. 26
    bornagain77 says:

    The materialist/atheist, as counter-intuitive as it may be for them, and no matter how much they deny it, simply has no solid empirical basis in physical science to insist that mind ’emerges’ from matter, whereas the Theist does have a solid basis to insist that Mind precedes matter, since it is clearly shown in quantum mechanics that ‘observation’ must precede wave collapse to 3-Dimensional particle in the first place!!!

    Dr. Quantum – Double Slit Experiment & Entanglement – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4096579/

    The immediate question is, “What does conscious observation have to do with anything in the experiments of quantum mechanics?” and thus by extrapolation of that question, “What does conscious observation have to do with anything in the universe?” Yet, the assertion that consciousness is to be treated as a separate entity when dealing with quantum mechanics, and thus with the universe, has some very strong clout behind it.

    Quantum mind–body problem
    Parallels between quantum mechanics and mind/body dualism were first drawn by the founders of quantum mechanics including Erwin Schrödinger, Werner Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli, Niels Bohr, and Eugene Wigner
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q.....dy_problem

    “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.” Eugene Wigner (1902 -1995) from his collection of essays “Symmetries and Reflections – Scientific Essays”; Eugene Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963

    Here is the key experiment that led Wigner to his Nobel Prize winning work on quantum symmetries:

    Eugene Wigner
    Excerpt: To express this basic experience in a more direct way: the world does not have a privileged center, there is no absolute rest, preferred direction, unique origin of calendar time, even left and right seem to be rather symmetric. The interference of electrons, photons, neutrons has indicated that the state of a particle can be described by a vector possessing a certain number of components. As the observer is replaced by another observer (working elsewhere, looking at a different direction, using another clock, perhaps being left-handed), the state of the very same particle is described by another vector, obtained from the previous vector by multiplying it with a matrix. This matrix transfers from one observer to another.
    http://www.reak.bme.hu/Wigner_.....io/wb1.htm

    i.e. In the experiment the ‘world’ (i.e. the universe) does not have a ‘privileged center’. Yet strangely, the conscious observer does exhibit a ‘privileged center’ in the universe. This is since the ‘matrix’, which determines which vector will be used to describe the particle in the experiment, is ‘observer-centric’ in its origination! Thus explaining Wigner’s dramatic statement, “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.”

    This following experiment extended the double slit experiment to show that the ‘spooky actions’, for instantaneous quantum wave collapse, happen regardless of any considerations for time or distance i.e. The following experiment shows that quantum actions are ‘universal and instantaneous’:

    Wheeler’s Classic Delayed Choice Experiment:
    Excerpt: Now, for many billions of years the photon is in transit in region 3. Yet we can choose (many billions of years later) which experimental set up to employ – the single wide-focus, or the two narrowly focused instruments. We have chosen whether to know which side of the galaxy the photon passed by (by choosing whether to use the two-telescope set up or not, which are the instruments that would give us the information about which side of the galaxy the photon passed). We have delayed this choice until a time long after the particles “have passed by one side of the galaxy, or the other side of the galaxy, or both sides of the galaxy,” so to speak. Yet, it seems paradoxically that our later choice of whether to obtain this information determines which side of the galaxy the light passed, so to speak, billions of years ago. So it seems that time has nothing to do with effects of quantum mechanics. And, indeed, the original thought experiment was not based on any analysis of how particles evolve and behave over time – it was based on the mathematics. This is what the mathematics predicted for a result, and this is exactly the result obtained in the laboratory.
    http://www.bottomlayer.com/bot.....choice.htm

    And of course all this leads us back to this question. “What does our conscious observation have to do with anything in collapsing the wave function of the photon in the double slit experiment and in the universe?”, and furthermore “What is causing the quantum waves to collapse from their ‘higher dimension’ in the first place since we humans are definitely not the ones who are causing the photon waves to collapse to their ‘uncertain 3D wave/particle’ state?” With the refutation of the materialistic ‘hidden variable’ argument and with the patent absurdity of the materialistic ‘Many-Worlds’ hypothesis, then I can only think of one sufficient explanation for quantum wave collapse to photon;

    Psalm 118:27
    God is the LORD, who hath shown us light:,,,

    In the following article, Physics Professor Richard Conn Henry is quite blunt as to what quantum mechanics reveals to us about the ‘primary cause’ of our 3D reality:

    Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger by Richard Conn Henry – Physics Professor – John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the “illusion” of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism (solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one’s own mind is sure to exist). (Dr. Henry’s referenced experiment and paper – “An experimental test of non-local realism” by S. Gröblacher et. al., Nature 446, 871, April 2007 – “To be or not to be local” by Alain Aspect, Nature 446, 866, April 2007
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/aspect.html

    Professor Henry’s bluntness on the implications of quantum mechanics continues here:

    Quantum Enigma:Physics Encounters Consciousness – Richard Conn Henry – Professor of Physics – John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: It is more than 80 years since the discovery of quantum mechanics gave us the most fundamental insight ever into our nature: the overturning of the Copernican Revolution, and the restoration of us human beings to centrality in the Universe.
    And yet, have you ever before read a sentence having meaning similar to that of my preceding sentence? Likely you have not, and the reason you have not is, in my opinion, that physicists are in a state of denial…
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....-designer/

    As Professor Henry pointed out, it has been known since the discovery of quantum mechanics itself, early last century, that the universe is indeed ‘Mental’, as is illustrated by this quote from Max Planck.

    “As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter.”
    Max Planck – The Father Of Quantum Mechanics – Das Wesen der Materie [The Nature of Matter], speech at Florence, Italy (1944)

    Colossians 1:17
    “He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.”

    (Double Slit) A Delayed Choice Quantum Eraser – updated 2007
    Excerpt: Upon accessing the information gathered by the Coincidence Circuit, we the observer are shocked to learn that the pattern shown by the positions registered at D0 (Detector Zero) at Time 2 depends entirely on the information gathered later at Time 4 and available to us at the conclusion of the experiment.
    http://www.bottomlayer.com/bot.....ly-web.htm

    It is interesting to note that some materialists seem to have a very hard time grasping the simple point of the double slit experiments, but to try to put it more clearly; To explain an event which defies time and space, as the quantum erasure experiment clearly does, you cannot appeal to any material entity in the experiment like the detector, or any other 3D physical part of the experiment, which is itself constrained by the limits of time and space. To give an adequate explanation for defying time and space one is forced to appeal to a transcendent entity which is itself not confined by time or space. But then again I guess I can see why forcing someone who claims to be a atheistic materialist to appeal to a non-material transcendent entity, to give an adequate explanation, would invoke such utter confusion on their part. Yet to try to put it in even more ‘shocking’ terms, the ‘shocking’ conclusion of the experiment is that a transcendent Mind, with a capital M, must precede the collapse of quantum waves to 3-Dimensional particles. Moreover, it is impossible for a human mind to ever ‘emerge’ from any 3-D material particle which is itself semi-dependent on our ‘observation’ for its own collapse to a 3D reality in the first place. This is more than a slight problem for the atheistic-evolutionary materialist who insists that our minds ‘emerged’, or evolved, from 3D matter. In the following article Professor Henry puts it more clearly than I can:

    The Mental Universe – Richard Conn Henry – Professor of Physics John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: The only reality is mind and observations, but observations are not of things. To see the Universe as it really is, we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things.,,, Physicists shy away from the truth because the truth is so alien to everyday physics. A common way to evade the mental universe is to invoke “decoherence” – the notion that “the physical environment” is sufficient to create reality, independent of the human mind. Yet the idea that any irreversible act of amplification is necessary to collapse the wave function is known to be wrong: in “Renninger-type” experiments, the wave function is collapsed simply by your human mind seeing nothing. The universe is entirely mental,,,, The Universe is immaterial — mental and spiritual. Live, and enjoy.
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/The.mental.universe.pdf

    etc.. etc..

  27. 27
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    William:

    Elizabeth,

    I don’t argue with the rustling of leaves, and I don’t debate the happenstance firings of neurons. Though either might produce interesting or amusing noises, I don’t consider either capable of rational debate.

    What an extraordinary response!

    So I take it that you think that what we believe becomes the truth? That because I (apparently, according to you) believe I have no mind, that I have none?

    Not that I do believe such a thing, which makes your response trebly odd.

    Ah well.

  28. 28
    Ilion says:

    WJM:Ironically, that they are arguing necessarily assumes that what they are arguing is untrue.

    Exactly — in order for their position to be the truth about the nature of reality it must be false.

    WJM:I wouldn’t say that materialists have lost their mind; I’d say they either never had one to begin with and are the biological automatons they believe themselves to be, or they willingly abandoned their mind for some reason or another.

    He must pull out his own eyes, and see no creature, before he can say, he sees no God; He must be no man, and quench his reasonable soul, before he can say to himself, there is no God.” — John Donne

  29. 29
    Mung says:

    Elizabeth Liddle:

    The postulated alternative to “nothing can create everything” is “a mind can create everything” right?

    From which it follows that minds can exist without being created?

    Do I have this right?

    No you don’t have it right. Why do you even need to ask us in order to know that? You should be able to look at your own words, that you just typed, and know that you don’t have it correct.

    Given your premise, how does your “conclusion” necessarily follow?

  30. 30
    William J. Murray says:

    Elizabeth,

    Unlike most others here, I do not believe that most humans have libertarian free will. I’m perfectly agreeable to the proposition that some or most people are saying and doing whatever they’ve been programmed by physics to say and do.

    In fact, I find that to be a very good explanation for much of what I experience out of most people I encounter.

    I call people like that NPCs; it stands for non-player characters (if you have played any online games, you are probably familiar with the term). I enjoy interacting with them, but I’d hardly get into a rational debate or argument with one.

  31. 31
  32. 32
    Collin says:

    Mr. Murray,

    But you act via libertarian free will? I guess most of us don’t pass the Turin test? 🙂

  33. 33
    Collin says:

    Turing test.

  34. 34
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    OK, William, thanks for the explanation.

    Obviously I profoundly disagree, but you will be used to that 🙂

  35. 35
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    Well, Mung, I’m just trying to figure out what is being said here. If it’s illogical to say that matter can be uncreated, that a mind must precede it, then it seems that you guys must be saying that mind can be uncreated.

    Or you’d just be pushing back the regress.

    I must say the idea that the ultimate reality is a universal mind is rather attractive.

    It just doesn’t seem to fit the evidence that minds have something to do with brains.

  36. 36
    William J. Murray says:

    Collin,

    My will is free; my actions are limited to what is available and physically possible.

  37. 37
    noam_ghish says:

    [quote]
    testing
    [/quote]

  38. 38
    noam_ghish says:

    [blockquote]
    testing
    [/blockquote]

  39. 39
    noam_ghish says:

    testing

  40. 40
    noam_ghish says:

    scruffy,
    thanks for your reply. i admire the rigor in your thought and for challenging my thinking.
    I want to be clear up front that this debate has no implication on whether God exists or does not exist. The only evidence for God is whether or not the Big Bang exhibits evidence of foresight and planning and I think it does. It doesn’t matter what happened before the Big Bang. Whatever happened before the BB has no bearing on whether or not the BB is the result of intention.

    let’s see your proof. it’s on the burden of the person that makes the assertion to prove it. asking someone to prove their assertions is not hand waving.

    In a case like this where we’re not dealing with something simple like how a car comes into being, it’s more about weighing the evidence and using a bit of logic/reason.

    Proof, logic/reason, same thing.

    People seem to have this idea that things that don’t exist are waiting behind a black current and then, when the time is right, the current is pulled. The reality is that there is no object hiding behind the curtain, because there is no curtain.

    This is not how I see things

    We know that contingent things that begin to exist have a cause for their existence. This is fact and there are no observations that say otherwise.

    This is an irrelevant side issue, but it is one that I feel passionate about. As an ID proponent you can’t believe the above and be consistent. Not everything has a cause. You’re writing the post you wrote was caused by your thoughts, but your thoughts did not have a cause. You chose them. You were the prime mover of your own thoughts. Your thoughts were influenced, but they were not caused in the sense of a billiard ball causes another billiard ball to move according to some inevitable physical law.

    either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.

    There’s a third option that is as absurd as something coming from nothing, infinite regression.

    Infinite regression is the same as something always existing.

    An eternal something is only absurd and illogical if we try to fit it within our universe of time, space, and matter.

    This is the fallacy of possibility. What you’re saying is:
    1. something’s possible
    2. therefore, it happened
    Another fallacy you’re committing is an appeal to imaginary empirical evidence which is the exact same thing the atheists do when they say:
    1. other universes are exist
    2. therefore, we’re an accident
    You’re making an appeal to another type of universe for which we have no empirical evidence of to prove your point. You can’t make up imaginary evidence to prove your point.

    any one concrete thing can come from nothing.

    You: The evidence for this I would like to see. Every experience we have tells us the exact opposite of what you write. I’m not quite sure what you mean by “concrete things”, presumably something physical or something that’s not an abstraction.
    Me: the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.
    You: A natural law, as Brent pointed out, is an abstraction. A description of the inharent properties of matter.
    Me: There is no law if there is no matter. i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.
    You: Why is it that a mind can come from nothing yet matter cannot? There are rules to what can and can not come from nothing?

    I never said that matter cannot come from nothing. I believe both mind and matter can come from nothing.

    You: What is governing the nothingness from which minds come from? If there is something governing nothing, that governing entity is not nothing ergo, something exists. Or does nothing have inherent properties as well? If a mind can pop into existence, uncaused, out of nothing, than there is no reason pizza, or people, or TVs, or any other piece of matter cannot pop into existence from nothing.

    You’re not understanding what I’m saying. When you say: “If there is something governing nothing, that governing entity is not nothing ergo, something exists.” That’s my point exactly. You want to know my proof that any one thing can come nothing. You just stated it.

    Me: abstract concepts cannot describe nothing and when i say nothing, i don’t mean nothing inside of something. i mean nothing at all, anywhere.
    You: It sure sounds like your saying “nothing inside of something.”

    Abstract concepts describe physical objects
    1. (A)bstract concepts exist if and only if (S)omething exists
    2. therefore, if Nothing (~S) exists, then (A)bstract concepts do not exist
    1. A ? S
    2. ? A ? S
    3. ? ~S ? ~A

    Taking everything we know, current knowledge says there is no evidence that something can come from nothing and thus, there is no reason to assume it can.

    We have to assume it can, otherwise we would not be here. But I want to stress that I believe that infinite regressions and something coming from nothing are both absurd, yet one of them must be true.

    What else are we left with?

    You can’t say
    1. x and ~x are both absurd
    2. therefore, ~x

  41. 41
    noam_ghish says:

    Computer didn’t read my proof, here it is again.

    1. A ? S
    2. A ? S
    3. ~S ? ~A

  42. 42
    noam_ghish says:

    Damn, it still won’t read my proof. Just replace the ? in 1 with equivalence and the ? in 2 and 3 with a horseshoe

  43. 43
    Mung says:

    Well, Mung, I’m just trying to figure out what is being said here.

    ok, I’ll take you seriously and see if I can help.

    The postulated alternative to “nothing can create everything” is “a mind can create everything” right?

    No. The postulated alternative is not that a mind can create everything, the postulated alternative is that nothing cannot create everything.

    Or, nothing cannot create anything.

    Or, nothing cannot create something, aka, something cannot be created by nothing.

    Or, for really silly people, nothing creates nothing.

    So you may now ask yourself the question, why is there something rather than nothing?

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....atchstick/

  44. 44
    Barb says:

    Noam wrote, “either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.”

    Your second premise is not absurd and illogical; time and space could easily have always existed. The steady state theory presupposes this.

    “any one concrete thing can come from nothing. the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.”

    Prove to me that any one concrete thing can come from nothing. After all, the burden of proof is on the person making the assertion. Show your work.

    “Law” is not concrete; it is abstract. We can have written laws, but the concept of law as providing justice or equality is abstract.

    “any one abstract thing, however, can not come from nothing, because abstract concept describe groups of things, such as order or beauty.”

    No, as explained above, abstract concepts aren’t necessarily groups. They’re abstract, not concrete. Beauty is abstract; justice is abstract.

    “i do not believe order can come from nothing. only a mind can order things, material cannot order itself. i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.”

    So, order (as in the harmony of planetary orbits, for example) cannot come from something but from nothing. Only a mind, a consciousness can cause order, but you then state that a mind can come from nothing!

    Dude, seriously, put the bong down and come up with a logical, reasonable argument. This is substandard pseudo-philosophy that Socrates would weep over.

  45. 45
    noam_ghish says:

    it’s very difficult for me to take seriously someone who writes: ” Dude, seriously, put the bong down and come up with a logical, reasonable argument. This is substandard pseudo-philosophy that Socrates would weep over.” That’s a pure ad hom. If you use ad homs then you have no respect for truth or philosophical inquiry.

    Noam wrote, “either something came from nothing or something always existed. both are absurd and illogical, yet one of them must be true, otherwise we would not be here.”
    Your second premise is not absurd and illogical; time and space could easily have always existed. The steady state theory presupposes this.

    The steady state theory has no empirical evidence to support it. That’s like quoting Darwinism to prove your point.

    “any one concrete thing can come from nothing. the only thing that can prevent any one thing coming from nothing is law and law is something. therefore, any one thing can come from nothing.”
    Prove to me that any one concrete thing can come from nothing. After all, the burden of proof is on the person making the assertion. Show your work.

    1. law is that which describes how things operate
    2. if nothing exists, then nothing can describe how it operates
    3. you posit, that only a through z can come from that nothing
    4. the words: “only a through z” is a description of how things operate
    5. therefore, you’re describing how nothing operates
    6. therefore, you’re using a law to describe nothing

    “Law” is not concrete; it is abstract. We can have written laws, but the concept of law as providing justice or equality is abstract.
    “any one abstract thing, however, can not come from nothing, because abstract concept describe groups of things, such as order or beauty.”
    No, as explained above, abstract concepts aren’t necessarily groups. They’re abstract, not concrete. Beauty is abstract; justice is abstract.

    You didn’t read what I wrote. I specifically said: “abstract concepts describe physical things. beauty for example describes m monroe. abstract concepts cannot describe nothing and when i say nothing, i don’t mean nothing inside of something. i mean nothing at all, anywhere.” Not only do you use ad homs, you don’t read what your opponents write.

    “i do not believe order can come from nothing. only a mind can order things, material cannot order itself. i believe mind can come from nothing, if it can’t then we would not be here.”
    So, order (as in the harmony of planetary orbits, for example) cannot come from something but from nothing. Only a mind, a consciousness can cause order, but you then state that a mind can come from nothing!

    mind is not order. mind does not describe physical objects, mind moves material objects. there is a distinct category difference between mind and order. Mind is immaterial, a force. Order is a concept that describes material.

  46. 46
    Scruffy says:

    noam_ghish,

    I honestly can’t see how you failed to grasp anything I said to this extent. I’m not even sure if you understand the issue here.

    This is an irrelevant side issue.

    No, this IS the issue. You’re saying things can come into being, uncaused, from nothing. Conventional wisdom since the dawn of man says it cannot and there’s no evidence to refute that wisdom.

    As an ID proponent you can’t believe the above and be consistent.

    I really can’t believe the absurdity of this. If things that begin to exist need a cause of their existence, ID is false?

    Not everything has a cause. You’re writing the post you wrote was caused by your thoughts, but your thoughts did not have a cause. You chose them. You were the prime mover of your own thoughts.

    You say my thoughts came from nothing, then in the next sentence, you say the cause of my thoughts are my own self.

    I am something, you defeated your argument in one breath.

    Your thoughts were influenced, but they were not caused in the sense of a billiard ball causes another billiard ball to move according to some inevitable physical law.

    This seems to indicate a huge misunderstanding in the issue. Just because something isn’t causally related to a physical thing, doesn’t mean it comes from nothing.

    Infinite regression is the same as something always existing.

    No, infinite regression requires an infinite number of past events in time. Eternity requires no time.

    This is the fallacy of possibility. What you’re saying is:
    1. something’s possible
    2. therefore, it happened
    Another fallacy you’re committing is an appeal to imaginary empirical evidence which is the exact same thing the atheists do when they say:
    1. other universes are exist
    2. therefore, we’re an accident
    You’re making an appeal to another type of universe for which we have no empirical evidence of to prove your point. You can’t make up imaginary evidence to prove your point.

    Wrong, I was only pointing out your fallacy of calling an eternal something illogical because you placed it within the context of our own universe. It was not a claim to it’s truth, it wasn’t even a statement about it’s possibilities.

    I never said that matter cannot come from nothing. I believe both mind and matter can come from nothing.

    So the reason McDonalds and bicycles don’t pop into existence uncaused is?

    You’re not understanding what I’m saying. When you say: “If there is something governing nothing, that governing entity is not nothing ergo, something exists.” That’s my point exactly. You want to know my proof that any one thing can come nothing. You just stated it.

    This response thoroughly confuses me. I made a reply indicating the absurdity of something coming from nothing for no reason in an attempt to get you to tell me the reasons why Object X would pop into existence.

    I then went onto say that if there is a reason, it would mean that there is actually a cause for said things popping out of nothing and it would defeat your position.

    Somehow I ended up proving something can come from nothing in the process, please explain.

    Abstract concepts describe physical objects
    1. (A)bstract concepts exist if and only if (S)omething exists
    2. therefore, if Nothing (~S) exists, then (A)bstract concepts do not exist
    1. A ? S
    2. ? A ? S
    3. ? ~S ? ~A

    I was simply stating that from my perspective, it seems like you’ve conflated the issue, so a reply explaining abstract concepts is out of place.

    We have to assume it can, otherwise we would not be here. But I want to stress that I believe that infinite regressions and something coming from nothing are both absurd, yet one of them must be true.

    Assuming something to be true, based on evidence, is a rational thing to do. Assuming something based on no evidence is irrational.

    Your position has no evidence for it and the hypothesis that something has always existed outweighs it’s negations, making it a more rational position to hold.

    It’s really rather simple:

    A. Things that begin to exist have a cause.

    B. Things that come from nothing would begin to exist.

    C. Things that come from nothing have a cause for their existence.

    D. Nothing is something.

    I should also note that your attempt to throw out eternal and say it’s the same as infinite regression further shows your lack of grasp on the subject.

    You can’t say
    1. x and ~x are both absurd
    2. therefore, ~x

    That’s actually what you did, not I.

  47. 47
    avocationist says:

    I had to go away for a while and lost track of this thread, but it disturbs me that some here believe that anything come come from nothing.

    Nothing is an abstract idea that does not exist. Because there is existence, there is something self existent, nothingness is impossible and no state of true nothingness has ever been.

    It’s not an either/or. There is only Existence.

  48. 48
    Brent says:

    noam @9,

    Sorry for the late reply.

    As for “nothing in a bubble”, are you calling me out on that because I stated the obvious? Is there any other way we can attempt to consider nothing? As I said before, if you want to talk about nothing at all, well, we have nothing to talk about.

    If you’ll notice, I added quotation marks to my earlier response when talking about the “law” from nothing, nothing comes. It should probably be referred to as an axiom. But this is an axiom that, for whatever reason, you don’t accept.

    This seems very, very strange to me, for you say that not even a law, and presumably an axiom, can be attributed to nothing. If you believe that, how exactly do you propose to get something, something concrete no less, from nothing? This is truly puzzling.

  49. 49
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    Mung:

    So you may now ask yourself the question, why is there something rather than nothing?

    Right.

    So what is the answer?

    (A physicist’s answer might be that nothing is inherently unstable, and that occasional random somethings and anti-somethings are more probable, but that doesn’t seem to me to answer the question as to why there is even an unstable nothing).

  50. 50
    Mung says:

    ok, you can’t read. i get it.

  51. 51
    Elizabeth Liddle says:

    Well, look at that. Mung had the opportunity to give me the answer to the ultimate theological question and he muffs it.

    Ah well. Hell for me I guess.

  52. 52
    Meleagar says:

    “A physicist’s answer might be that nothing is inherently unstable, and that occasional random somethings and anti-somethings are more probable …”

    I wonder how one calculates the behavioral probabilities of “nothing”, and how one would arrive at the conclusion that “nothing” is inherently unstable?

    I wonder, if enough really smart and respected scientists asserted that jumping off a cliff will increase your chances of living a long and healthy life, how many people will jump off a cliff?

    I mean, if one can be convinced that you can not only get something from nothing, but that you can also calculate the behavioral probabilities of nothing, what’s to stop people from believing that jumping off a cliff will help them lead a long and healthy life?

  53. 53
    kairosfocus says:

    NG, 8:

    That’s just an assertion [ –> in reply to 2 + 3 = 5]. You have no proof that something that exists, never began

    Pardon, but as asked previously, can you identify circumstances under which the truth expressed in 2 + 3 = 5 will not hold?

    Brazenly dismissing the matter by demanding a “proof” in the teeth of a demonstration by example, is selectively hyperskeptical.

    2 + 3 = 5 FYI is self-evidently true. Once you understand what it is saying, and what it means, you see it is true and must be true, and that there are no possible circumstances under which it will not be true, on pain of reduction to absurdity.

    That is, the truth claim expressed in 2 + 3 = 5 is true, it was always true and it will always be true. That is it corresponds to and accurately describes reality.

    You may not like the implications, but you have no answer to the case other than to try to demand a proof that you have known in essence since you were in grade school or even Kindergarten.

    In short, you have right in front of you an example of a necessary being. One that by the way is generally conceded, e.g. in the famous Russell- Coppeleston debate in the 1940’s, Russell was careful to acknowledge this first of all before making any other points.

    A true proposition is true, period. that truthfulness did not begin, nor will it end. And where the truth in a sentence that refers to time — as in the author of this post is now typing — is delimited by time, the complete truth expressed in this proposition will be like that. That is, “now” can be filled in as to say between 10 to 8 am local time here and 8 or so, on this date and place.

    Truth is like that, and it is seen through concrete cases.

    your error continues:

    I agree that fine tuning points to an intelligent designer, but it does not point to the existence of anything being eternal.

    But it is not fine tuning that points to there being a necessary being at the causal root of our cosmos but — even through multiverse speculations — its contingency.

    Which is most easily seen in the evidence that it has a beginning.

    Have you done the half-burned match exercise? That will show you what makes things contingent: they depend on external necessary causal factors.

    Absent such a factor and a contingent being cannot exist. It will not begin, or if a going concern, it will cease.

    So, you have the problem of traversing the infinite in steps, which is indeed an absurdity, or else you have a root being that is not contingent.

    A contingent cosmos, which is also fine tuned, points to such a root being: no beginning, no end — as not dependent on external causal factors — and with the power, capacity and purpose to design and effect a cosmos fine tuned for C-chemistry, cell based life.

    Now, I acknowledge that his type of thinking is novel to most of us, that is a result of the gaps in our education and public discussion driven by the dominance of a priori materialism.

    If you go back some decades, you will see that the Steady State cosmology was in part put forth as the cosmos as a whole would then be the necessary being.

    But, alas for materialists, that was not the case. Our observed cosmos credibly had a beginning and is thus credibly contingent.

    From that, much follows, and it puts on the table some very serious worldview issues.

    Issues that are inconvenient for the reigning orthodoxy.

    GEM of TKI

  54. 54
    kairosfocus says:

    Scruff, 16:

    Apart from the empirical evidence that points to a temporally delimited cosmos, the root challenge here is the traversing of the infinite.

    As my carpenter friend saw yesterday in a hardware shop, if the links in a chain extend to infinity, then they cannot be counted in sequence, we will never arrive at infinity – 1, infinity. (That is tied to the issue that cardinality aleph null happens when the members of a countable set can be put in one to one correspondence with the set as a whole, e.g. the evens with the natural numbers.)

    So, we cannot go, 1, 2, 3, 4, . . . and arrive at infinity. Nor, -1, -2, -3, . . . and arrive at negative infinity. So also, if the origin of the chain of causes is infinitely remote, we cannot arrive at the present by traversing the aleph null cardinality implied.

    That is before we see the problems of thermodynamics — energy gradients would run down leading to heat death and maximum chaos. Nor the direct observational evidence of clusters, galaxies, and Hubble expansion as best explanation for red shift.

    The situation we face is that our observed cosmos, so far as the facts support, had a finitely remote beginning. It is contingent, and has external necessary causal factor(s).

    that points onward to a necessary being as already outlined just now.

    GEM of TKI

  55. 55
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: gotta go bailing out water coming in over the gunnels, but the contingency has a separate dimension that would hold even in a temporally infinite cosmos. think about the contingency of the cosmos as a going concern: do we have reason to imagine that it cannot end? And, what about the factors that seem to be just this way and not that, which go together to make it habitable for our type of life? (Remember on this, the cosmos seems to be finely balanced as to mass as the ratio of a grain of sand to all the atomic matter out there. And yup I am being very specific in terminology.)

    Ah gawn . . .

  56. 56
    avocationist says:

    KairosFocus,

    You said-
    “Pardon, but as asked previously, can you identify circumstances under which the truth expressed in 2 + 3 = 5 will not hold?”

    It seems to me that in a state of true nothingness not only would this equation have no meaning, but could not be formulated, nor could anything.

    It seems to me that people are thinking in terms of bubbles of nothingness in an otherwise active cosmos and then ascribing properties to it. But the two are completely separate. As soon as you have any kind of somethingness, you no longer have nothingness.
    Although numbers are abstract and nonmaterial, they refer to material things, without which they cannot arise.

  57. 57
    kairosfocus says:

    Is nothingness — nonexistence of ANYTHING –a possible state of affairs? [Recognise, here, that we are discussing this . . . ]

  58. 58
    avocationist says:

    KF,

    Nothingness is not a possible state of affairs, at least not in our case, in which we have existence. I.e., nothingness does not “exist” somewhere.

    From yesterday:
    “Nothing is an abstract idea that does not exist. Because there is existence, there is something self existent, nothingness is impossible and no state of true nothingness has ever been.

    It’s not an either/or. There is only Existence.”

    But if there WERE a state of nothingness, nothing could arise from it! And if something arises within a bubble of nothingness, we can be sure it was transferred from without the bubble.

  59. 59
    Brent says:

    avocationist,

    First, the way I read KF makes it seem that 2+3=5 wasn’t necessarily meant to be applied to a state of nothingness. Maybe I’m wrong, but I think the main point he was trying to make was something else.

    Anyway, as you seem to agree, to speak of nothingness, we are somewhat forced to think in terms of a “bubble”. In that case, I think that you can apply abstract ideas, axioms, “laws”, concepts to that area of nothing. As I said earlier, from nothing nothing comes, would apply to that space. 2+3=5 would also, though it should be stated as a conditional, i.e., “if some things existed in that bubble”. But even while nothing exists in that bubble, it is still true within the bubble that 2+3=5. Nothing in the bubble could conceive of it or demonstrate its truth, but it would be true nonetheless.

  60. 60
    avocationist says:

    Brent,

    Yes, I was not arguing with KF, merely asking if, when considering a true state of nothingness (not a bubble), we can posit abstract, nonmaterial concepts such as numbers, when those numbers require things to refer to. Without things to count, could such a concept as #3 arise? The only way it could is if minds and things are borrowed from a functioning cosmos, and applied to a bubble. I think that could be misleading, especially as we are engaging in a metaphysical discussion of the necessity of an uncaused cause.

    Nothingness means no particles, no space, no quantum void. It’s not even dark, empty space. And so, whence the universe? Someone here said that nothingness could give rise to a mind.

  61. 61
    Brent says:

    OK. I think we agree. As I was saying earlier, if we are not speaking of a bubble, but just absolute nothingness “everywhere”, then we have nothing to talk about.

  62. 62
    noam_ghish says:

    @KF 53

    I don’t like this format. It takes too long to find my old posts. Please email me at bobsmith99 at catholic dot org if you would like to continue the debate.

    2 + 3 = 5 FYI is self-evidently true. Once you understand what it is saying, and what it means, you see it is true and must be true, and that there are no possible circumstances under which it will not be true, on pain of reduction to absurdity.

    I believe 2 + 3 = 5 is self-evident. I also believe, one, that it is self-evident that infinite regress is impossible in a concrete world, two, I also believe that it is absurd that something can from nothing. However, one or two must be true, in spite of their absurdity. Fortunately, whether or not one or two is true has no implication for theism or atheism. The only thing that has implications for atheism or theism is evidence of fine-tuning in our present universe, which there is.

    A true proposition is true, period. that truthfulness did not begin, nor will it end. And where the truth in a sentence that refers to time — as in the author of this post is now typing — is delimited by time, the complete truth expressed in this proposition will be like that. That is, “now” can be filled in as to say between 10 to 8 am local time here and 8 or so, on this date and place.

    Correct me if I’m wrong but you seem to be saying:
    1. truth has no beginning nor end
    2. therefore, something exists that has no beginning nor end
    3. therefore, this can apply to the universe

    If so, then you’re blurring the analytic-synthetic distinction which Kant pointed out was S Anselm’s mistake in his ontological proof for the existence of God. You can’t use truths that exist in the analytic, platonic realm and assume that they are always true for the concrete world. For example, you cannot say:

    1. in the platonic realm, a line is the shortest distance between two points
    2. therefore, in the material realm a line is the shortest distance between two points

    We now know that space is curved and the above is not true.

    But it is not fine tuning that points to there being a necessary being at the causal root of our cosmos but — even through multiverse speculations — its contingency.

    Listen I believe God’s existence is necessary to account for the fact that the universe is ordered. However, it does not follow that the universe is eternal. It’s a nonsequiter to say:

    1. God must exist, if order exists
    2. therefore, the universe has no beginning.

    Have you done the half-burned match exercise? That will show you what makes things contingent: they depend on external necessary causal factors.
    Absent such a factor and a contingent being cannot exist. It will not begin, or if a going concern, it will cease.
    So, you have the problem of traversing the infinite in steps, which is indeed an absurdity, or else you have a root being that is not contingent.

    Don’t understand what you mean.

    A contingent cosmos, which is also fine tuned, points to such a root being: no beginning, no end — as not dependent on external causal factors — and with the power, capacity and purpose to design and effect a cosmos fine tuned for C-chemistry, cell based life.

    This is just an assertion. I see no proof in that statement.

  63. 63
    noam_ghish says:

    @ Scruffy, I don’t have time to debate three people, so goodbye.

    @Brent 48

    I don’t like this format. It takes too long to find my old posts. Please email me at bobsmith99 at catholic dot org if you would like to continue the debate.

    As for “nothing in a bubble”, are you calling me out on that because I stated the obvious? Is there any other way we can attempt to consider nothing?

    Don’t know what you mean

    As I said before, if you want to talk about nothing at all, well, we have nothing to talk about.

    We’re talking about the origin of existence, which is something not nothing.

    If you’ll notice, I added quotation marks to my earlier response when talking about the “law” from nothing, nothing comes. It should probably be referred to as an axiom. But this is an axiom that, for whatever reason, you don’t accept.

    Sure, ex nihlo nihil fit is an axiom, but so is the impossibility of infinite regress in a material world. If you have two axioms that contradict each other, then one must be wrong. Let’s say both A and ~A were axiomatically true, that would be impossible. One of them would have to be true.

    This seems very, very strange to me, for you say that not even a law, and presumably an axiom, can be attributed to nothing. If you believe that, how exactly do you propose to get something, something concrete no less, from nothing? This is truly puzzling.

    I no more have a solution to how you get something from nothing, then you have a solution as to how to account for something arising out of an infinite regress.

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