The Contingency Argument For God’s Existence

By Evan Minton

Why does anything at all exist? Why isn’t there just nothing? This is the first philosophical question I ever remember asking myself. I remember lying in bed at night when I was about 6 years old, and I asked and pondered this very question. I thought to myself “Everything must have been made by God. If God didn’t exist, then nothing else would exist either. Since everything exists, God must exist. But what if God didn’t exist either? Then nothing else would exist.” It was only 15 years later that I discovered that my childlike insight was actually developed into a sophisticated philosophical argument for the existence of God long before I was even born. In fact, I had even forgotten that moment of reflection when I was a small child until I started reading about the argument as an adult. Then I remembered.

Contingency Argument God

The argument is called “The Contingency Argument For God’s Existence”. Sometimes it’s referred to as “The Leibnizian Cosmological Argument”, the reason why it is called that is that the argument was first formulated by the mathematician Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz. The argument’s premises are:

1: Everything that exists has an explanation of its existence (either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause).

2: If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.

3: The universe exists.

4: Therefore, The universe has an explanation of its existence.

5: Therefore, the explanation of the universe’s existence is God.

Now, this is a logically airtight argument. So if the atheist wants to deny the conclusion, he has to say that one of the three premises is false. Let’s examine the premises to see what reasons can be given for affirming them.

Premise 1: Everything That Exists Has An Explanation Of Its Existence (Either In The Necessity Of Its Own Nature Or In An External Cause). 

*Types Of Explanations – There are 2 types of explanations for why something exists. X was either caused to exist by something that exists outside of and prior to X or X exists out of a necessity of its own nature (I.e its non-existence is impossible and it depends on nothing outside of itself to bring it into or keep it in existence). Something was either caused to exist by something else or it exists out of logical necessity.

*This Premise Is Self-Evident – We all intuitively know that whatever exists has some sort of explanation as to why it exists. Imagine you were walking in the forest with a friend and found a ball lying on the ground. You would naturally wonder how the ball came to be there. If your friend said to you “Don’t worry about it. The Ball just exists inexplicably” you would either think he was crazy or was joking around. Either way, you’d never take seriously the notion that the ball just existed there with no explanation for why it existed or how it came to be there.

Whatever it is we think about, whether it be cars, trucks, chairs, tables, people, houses, trees, balloons, mountains, planets, galaxies, etc. we know that they must have some explanation for their existence. Nothing exists for no reason. Even little children know this. Why else would they ask Mom and Dad “Where do babies come from?” They know that they have an explanation for their existence. They know that they don’t exist inexplicably.

*Objection: Does God Have An Explanation Of His Existence?

Critics of this argument frequently object to this premise by saying that if everything that exists must have an explanation for why it exists, then God must have an explanation for His existence. If God exists, then the premise applies to Him as well. However, that would demean God as it would mean something existed outside of God Himself which brought Him into existence. In other words, God would have a Creator and we would have a Heavenly Grandfather. Now, if we make God an exception to premise 1, the skeptic would rightly accuse us of special pleading. And moreover, he could ask that if we’re allowed to make God an exception to premise 1, why not exempt the universe?

This objection does not succeed. Read the first premise again. “Everything that exists has an explanation of its existence (either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause)”. We would agree that God’s greatness would be diminished if he had anexternal cause for His existence. But that’s not the only type of explanation there is. One category of existence-explanation is necessary existence. What the Christian Apologist would say in response is that God does indeed have an explanation for His existence, but that explanation is that He exists by the necessity of His own nature. If God exists, He cannot not exist. His non-existence is logically impossible.

So premise 1 certainly seems to be true. What about premise 2? Is premise 2 true?

Premise 2: If The Universe Has An Explanation Of Its Existence, That Explanation Is God.

At first, this premise may seem like a huge logical leap. But it actually makes sense when you think about it. In order to have caused the universe to come into being, the cause of the universe must be beyond the universe, beyond space and time. And therefore cannot be a material, spatial, or temporal type of thing. Whatever caused the universe to come into being must be a spaceless, immaterial, uncaused, powerful, personal Creator. Why is that?

The cause must be

Spaceless — because it brought space into existence. If the cause is responsible for space’s existence, it cannot be inside of space. It cannot exist inside of something that doesn’t exist yet. Just as the builder of your house could not have existed inside your house, so the cause could not have existed inside of space.

Immaterial – The cause’s non-spatiality entails immateriality. How? Because material objects cannot exist unless space exists. Material objects occupy spatial dimensions. If there is no space, matter cannot exist. This means that because the cause is non-spatial, it is therefore non-material.

Supernatural – “Nature” and “The universe” are synonyms. Since the cause is beyond nature (given that its the explanation why nature exists), it follows that the cause is supernatural. After all, that’s what phenomenon transcendent to nature is. Supernatural, that which transcends the natural.

Powerful – Whatever is able to create and/or sustain the entire physical cosmos must have enormous power.

Uncaused – Given that the cause of the universe is a necesarilly existent being, it must therefore be uncaused. Necesarry existence presupposes eternal existence.

Personal – This is an entailment of the cause’s immateriality. There are two types of things recognized by philosophers that are immaterial: abstract objects (such as numbers, sets, or other mathematical entities) or unembodied minds. Philosophers realize that abstract objects if they exist, they exist as non-physical entities. However, abstract objects cannot produce any effects. That’s part of what it means to be abstract. The number 3 isn’t going to be producing any effects anytime soon. Given that abstract objects are causally impotent, it, therefore, follows that an unembodied mind is the cause of the universe’ beginning.

This sounds an awful lot like God to me. Now, we don’t have to call this cause “God” if that makes the atheist feel uncomfortable. We could just call it “The non-spatial, immaterial, unimaginably powerful, necesarilly existent Mind behind the universe”. But to avoid getting out of breath, I prefer to label this explanation “God”.

Moreover, even if the universe were beginningless, it would still be the case that it needs a cause that has the aforementioned properties. Leibniz’ argument doesn’t depend on proving that the universe had a beginning. As long as the universe is not a necessarily existent thing, then it needs a non-spatial, non-material, powerful, uncreated Mind to be the explanation for why it exists. For The Contingency Argument to succeed, all that needs to be true is that the universe is contingent.

3: The Universe Exists.

The truth of this premise is overwhelmingly obvious to anyone with even a small shred of sanity. No defense of this premise needs to be given.

Of course, if someone wanted to resort to some crazy idea like solipsism (the view that you are the only thing that exists, and the entire universe and everything you experience are projections of your own mind), that doesn’t get you out of this premise. In this case, one could just say that YOU are the universe.

4: Therefore, The Universe Has An Explanation Of Its Existence.

This follows logically from premises 1 and 3.

5: Therefore, The Explanation Of The Existence Of The Universe Is God.

This follows logically from premises 2 and 4.

*Objection: “Well, Maybe The Universe Doesn’t Need To Have An External Explanation For Its Existence. Maybe The Universe Exists By A Necessity Of Its Own Nature.”

This is one way an atheist could escape the conclusion of this argument. Perhaps premise 2 of this argument is false. The atheist could say “Well, granted. God or a being remarkably similar to God must be the explanation of the universe’s existence provided the assumption that the universe requires an external cause. But maybe that assumption is wrong. Maybe the explanation for the universe’s existence is that exists by a nature of its own existence.”

In order to save premise 2 and ergo the argument’s conclusion, we’ll need to show that the universe does require an external cause for its existence. There are some pretty clear reasons why we wouldn’t want to embrace this alternative. As we think about this big ole world we live in, none of the things that it consists of seem to exist necessarily. It seems like all of these things didn’t have to exist. It seems like they could have failed to exist.

But, you might say, perhaps the matter that these things are made of exists necessarily? Perhaps that although the galaxies, stars, planets, people, etc. and everything in the universe doesn’t exist necesarilly, the material stuff these things are made of exists necesarilly.

This proposal just simply doesn’t work. Allow me to explain why. You see, according to physicists, matter consists of teensy weensy particles called “quarks.” Everything in our world are just different arrangements of these quarks. But it seems to me that one could ask why a different collection of quarks could not have existed in the stead of this one? Are we expected to believe that every single quark in existence cannot possibly fail to exist? Does the skeptic want us to buy into the notion that all of the quarks in the universe have to exist?

“Okay, well maybe quarks aren’t necessarily existent. But maybe the particles of which the quarks are composed exist necessarily.” This suggestion won’t work because quarks aren’t composed of anything! They just are the basic units of matter. So if a quark doesn’t exist, the matter doesn’t exist.

It seems obvious to me that the existence of a different collection of quarks comprising everything of the cosmos was possible, but in that case, it follows that a different universe could have existed, and if a different universe could have existed, then it follows that our universe isn’t necessarily existent.

To see the point, think of your house. Could your house have been made of candy? Now, I’m not asking if you could have had a different house (one made of candy) in the stead of the one you actually live in. I’m asking if the very house you’re currently living in ifthat house could have been composed of candy. Obviously not. If it did, then it would not be the same house. It would be a different house.

Similarly, a cosmos comrpised of different quarks would be a different cosmos. Even if the said quarks were arranged in such a way as to resemble our universe identically, it still wouldn’t be the same universe because the quarks comrprising it would be different quarks. It follows from this that the universe does not exist by a necessity of its own nature.

Moreover, we have powerful scientific evidence that not only could the universe have failed to exist, but there was a time when it actually did not in fact exist. The Big Bang Theory has a lot of scientific evidence in its favor. A Big Bang beginning is a logical entailment of the expansion of the universe which is itself an entailment of the empirically verified “red shift” of distant galaxies, and moreover, The Big Bang is the only explanation for the abundance of light elements in the universe. Moreover, the universe is running out of usable energy over time, and if the universe had existed from eternity past, it would have run out of usable energy by now. Yet the universe has not run out of usable energy by now. This means that the universe cannot be eternal in the past, but must have an absolute beginning. Since the universe had an absolute beginning, it cannot exist by a necessity of its own nature. Why? Because necessary existence entails beginningless existence. It something cannot possibly not exist, then it could not have had a beginning to its existence. Since if it had a beginning to its existence, that would mean there was a time that it did not exist.

Conclusion

Given the truth of the 3 premises, the conclusion follows: God is the explanation for why the universe exists.

 

Original Blog Source: http://bit.ly/2te1kFa


 

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20 replies
  1. Andy Ryan says:

    Why assume that ‘nothing exists’ would be the default state, such that an explanation is required to explain the alternative? We don’t even know if ‘nothing’ is even possible – we have no examples of it in the universe. Perhaps existence is the default – we don’t know.

    And while you are aware of the argument’s vulnerability to the accusation of special pleading, you don’t properly address it. Your answer – that God might simply be necessary – could equally apply to the universe. Occam’s Razor favours the latter, as we at least know the universe exists! Why explain the existence of something by assuming the existence of an even more complicated thing?
    The answer given above is to ask if the universe could have been slightly different. Sure, but that doesn’t address if the existence of universe itself is necessary. One might as well ask if a God with slightly different properties would be possible, or whose nature is slightly different – after all, America alone has thousands of different denominations of Christianity, each one of which has a slightly different conception of God, his nature, his expectations of us, what he views as sinful, etc. Does this invalidate the idea of a ‘necessary God’? If not, then the same applies to the universe and all its quarks.

    Reply
    • Kalmaro C says:

      Wait, you’re saying that God is more complicated than the universe but in what way?

      Occam’s razor favors God in this case because the universe’s beginning necessitates something supernatural to have caused it. To say that it was a natural cause would require a very complicated explanation since you would be trying to find a natural way to explain the origins of all things natural in the first place. Ca

      Reply
      • Andy Ryan says:

        “Wait, you’re saying that God is more complicated than the universe but in what way?”
        A mind that created every aspect of a closed system and knows every single possible thing that not only WILL happen but CAN happen in it must be more complicated than that system.
        “necessitates something supernatural to have caused it”
        You’ve no basis for saying that.
        “To say that it was a natural cause would require a very complicated explanation since you would be trying to find a natural way to explain the origins of all things natural in the first place”
        Why is a supernatural cause simpler than that? Also, all we can say about the start of the universe is that the Big Bang was the beginning of the universe in its current form. All ‘supernatural cause’ means here is ‘outside of the current universe’, rather than supernatural in the sense of magical or God-caused.

        Reply
        • Kalmaro says:

          I’m still not understanding your thought process on saying a mind is too complicated. How exactly do you establish that? I’ve always assumed that minds were simple but never thought much on it since it is not something we can test.

          As for the universe having a supernatural cause, the article explains this pretty well, I’m not sure why you have a problem with the explanation. How would you define the word ‘nature’?

          Your last point interest me the most though. If nature is define as everything in the universe, then whatever started the universe can not be natural. You can not be made of something that does not exist yet. That just goes against logic. So to say that the cause for the universe is natural is essentially to say that the universe caused itself, which sounds like you are going to need a pretty complicated explanation for. How can something cause itself to exist? We have never shown that to even be possible.

          What we have shown and seen ourselves are countless examples of things coming into being due to a cause. If reality allowed things to just exist suddenly and with now cause we would be in trouble, I would imagine anyway.

          Reply
          • Andy Ryan says:

            Most people figure the human brain is probably the most complicated thing in the universe. You saying minds are actually simple, including a mind that supposedly knows every fact possible, strikes me as so bizarre that I can see much possible common ground between our views.

            You talk about things ‘coming into being’ with a cause. In fact we have no examples of anything ‘coming into being’ thatbincan think of with the possible exception of quarks. What we see is existing things changing form. We have no examples of something out of nothing, yet you think a God pulled off such a trick. We have no examples of the supernatural, yet you posit the existence of an all-powerful supernatural being.

            You say things can’t cause themselves to exist. Granting that, two of our choices are a God that always existed and a universe that always existed. As I already said, the latter seems the simpler explanation as we already know a universe exists. Your assumption is that universe at all existed before the Big Bang, rather than just the universe in a different form.

  2. Tracey says:

    As many types of beliefs; Christianity, as there are that many types of people, and amen to that.
    God needs no explanation what would he do with it, file it?
    Sometimes unbelief is preferred than to trust another with your, feelings, your thoughts, like a child beginning to walk, without the first fall, the child has no real inhibitions just wants to get mobile and change this mobility as the child grows, inbuilt time clock. But once the first fall is experienced the child then knows all about the pain of the fall, doesn’t stop trying to walk just, is now, unaware of being careful.
    God is all about us, we, if we had our own way, is all about, me, as the song goes, me, myself and I.
    How will this benefit me? let me count up the ways.
    And the word, Matter, in law is the Word.

    Reply
  3. Kalmaro says:

    @Andy
    I think part of the confusion is that you are mixing the work brain and mind. I do not believe we have reason to assume that this hold God as an disembodied brain. We are talking about consciousness in itself. That is not something that can be measured scientifically, hence me wondering how you are making the claim that it is complicated.

    As for am example of something coming out of nothing through means that can only be supernatural… I think the universe in itself is testament to that. We know of no testable way that anything can come from a state of non being without a cause.

    You are right that I do believe that God always existed, but I never once said the universe did. I think evidence supports the view that the universe has a beginning. If that is true then it make no sense logically that the universe could have caused itself to begin. Something must have caused it.

    Reply
    • Andy Ryan says:

      “hence me wondering how you are making the claim that it is complicated”
      I’ve already explained. Necessarily, a mind that created every aspect of a closed system and knows every single possible thing that not only WILL happen but CAN happen in it must contain more information than that system. If that doesn’t make it more complicated, I’d like to know how you’re defining the term ‘complicated’. It seems that you’re saying it’s ‘simple’ by virtue of awarding it no qualities at all but the most nebulous.
      “You are right that I do believe that God always existed, but I never once said the universe did”
      I know – there’s your problem.
      “I think evidence supports the view that the universe has a beginning”
      …sure, in its current form. That doesn’t mean nothing natural preceded it, it just means we currently have no way of telling what that was.
      “We know of no testable way that anything can come from a state of non being without a cause”
      The last three words of that sentence are not needed. Try this:
      We know of no testable way that anything can come from a state of non being.
      Kalmaro, neither of us are cosmologists, but I note that there are plenty of experts on universe origins who don’t point to a God as the most reasonable explanation for the Big Bang, including Stephen Hawking and Lawrence Krauss.

      Reply
      • Kalmaro says:

        I’m saying it’s simple in that it is not complicated in its makeup. By that I mean it has no physical properties to make it complicated. That’s why I was asking what you meant. It looks like you are leaning on complication via information though so I think I see where you are coming from.

        When a theist points out that God is simple, what they mean usually is that he is not made up of parts. The universe, however, is comprised completely of parts. Even things like saying that he has all information would not necessarily mean he is complicated, as information is not necessarily physical in nature.

        If one were to try and compare God to a natural cause to the universe you would quickly see whamich is more complicated. You’d first have to find a mechanism for something to exist and at the same time create itself. Then find a way for this cause that has no will of its own to act on its own without being acted on by itself since a mindless object cannot just decide to cause something. It starts to become messy fairly quickly. You have to create explination after explination to figure out how the universe could have a natural cause, and none of these explinations could be tested. They would all be assumptions.

        A simpler answer would be that the universe had an unnatural cause.

        “That doesn’t mean nothing natural preceded it, it just means we currently have no way of telling what that was.

        How can something natural create all that is natural? I can think of no natural or logical way to answer that. To say there is one sounds more like a leap of faith than anything else. Not to mention it looks like you are dismissing my answer in favor of the hope that you will find an answer later, which also sounds like faith.

        Also, while I am not a cosmologist, you do not need to be one to know that things do not come into being without a cause. Giving me examples of people who think otherwise does not change anything, especially when they can not prove their point. I think the people you should lend more credit to are the philosophers, as that deals with logic and how to apply it. Without good philosophy you can not even properly utilize science and I think anyone making the claim that nature can create itself is not using good logical reasoning.

        Reply
        • Andy Ryan says:

          “How can something natural create all that is natural?”
          We have no examples of anything being created by something NON-natural! Natural creation is all that we DO see. You beg the question by citing the universe itself, as the creation of the universe is what we’re discussing in the first place!

          “you do not need to be one to know that things do not come into being without a cause”
          Again, we don’t see things ‘coming into being’ in the first place.

          “When a theist points out that God is simple, what they mean usually is that he is not made up of parts”
          Why does this make it a simpler explanation? How do you even know that something ‘not made of parts’ is even possible? It’s not something we see in nature. You’re trying to answer a mystery by appealing to an even bigger mystery.

          All that aside, we’re going around in circles now.

          Reply
          • Kalmaro says:

            You’re making this more complicated than it needs to be. If nature has a beginning, it cannot be nature that caused it. That’s just all there is to it. The universe having a beginning, and the fact that the universe contains all of nature is the biggest evidence that something above nature started it.

            This is not special pleading, and the only reason we are going in circles is due to you saying that nature can create itself, despite that view not being supported scientifically or logically. If you are going to hold to the idea that objects can create themselves there is really not much I can say. Your faith in this is pretty strong.

          • TGM says:

            It does seem to be the case that nature cannot cause nature. But you are making the assumption, unwarranted, that the universe is the entirety of nature. Kalamaro, how did you rule out the universe was created by some other natural thing that we simply cannot investigate right now? Why do you acknowledge the universe arising from something and then just assume that that something must be unnatural and/or goddish?

      • Tracey says:

        Yes the universe did begin, and time began ( Big Bang) , read Genesis then read Job (the oldest book), the book of Genesis was written by Moshe and he wrote in brief because the book of Job, is detailed.
        Could you please provide what was before the universe?
        Be interested to read, from your point of view.

        Reply
  4. Kalmaro says:

    @TGM
    “But you are making the assumption, unwarranted, that the universe is the entirety of nature.”

    That’s an interesting point. You are right, I am making the assumption that the universe contains all nature, mostly due to the fact that we have little reason to believe otherwise. Perhaps there actually is matter outside of the universe, but that would only push the problem of origin back further.

    If we are to make the claim that nature existed before the universe then we start running into the issue of explaining where that nature came from in the first place. The idea that nature exists outside of the universe is am assumption that we can’t prove as of yet and likely won’t. To dismiss other answers to the problem of our cosmological beginnings on the grounds that we might find a more preferable answer in the future is a faith claim. It essentially is the same as saying “Well you may have a point, but I think you will be proven wrong in the future.”

    However knows, perhaps someday we might actually be able to observe our beginnings somehow. However, to dismiss answers supported by the evidence now I’m favor of a hope for a better answer seems odd. I don’t have the faith or patience for that.

    As for why I believe the universe is unnatural I’m origin. As we have no evidence yet of nature outside of the universe, and since we have no reason yet to believe that something can come into being without a cause, the only explanation left is a cause that is above nature. Another word being supernatural. This is not about me just wanting God to be the answer, this is purely about acknowledging the qualities of the cause of the universe. If those qualities match with those of the biblical God then so be it. I can not help that.

    What bothers me are those who are so against the idea of anything being above nature that they try to find other answer, and make things more complicated. Even worse are those that just ignore any unfavorable answers on the hope that science will find an answer some day. That right there is just wishful thinking.

    Reply
    • TGM says:

      “If we are to make the claim that nature existed before the universe…”
      I make no such claim. That, too, would be unwarranted. I only asked how you ruled it out. Your inclination, when faced with the origin of the universe, is to go straight to the supernatural, something we cannot investigate, in favor of other explanations. The proper approach seems to be to take no position on origins preceding the earliest expansion data.

      “However, to dismiss answers supported by the evidence now I’m favor of a hope for a better answer seems odd. I don’t have the faith or patience for that.”
      Except that there are no quality answers supported by the evidence and I reject the lesser answers offered to date in favor of “I don’t know” or “I am not convinced of that”. Good luck demonstrating that those are faith positions.

      “since we have no reason yet to believe that something can come into being without a cause”
      Right. But we also have no reason to belief something DID come into being without a cause. We have a universe that we can trace back to the Planck Era. We think that something came before this in the period between our earliest measurements and the proposed singularity. That’s the best we can do right now. Based on this, what is this uncaused thing you reference and what do we know of it?

      “What bothers me are those who are so against the idea of anything being above nature that they try to find other answer, and make things more complicated.”
      And what bothers me is that those who are so determined to find an answer to difficult existential questions will leap to the quickest, most reassuring one, eschewing their skepticism. The clearest dividing line I’ve discovered between theists and non-theists is the degree of a person’s willingness to accept uncertainty/ambiguity (moral, cosmic, value etc.). I can live with “I don’t know. Let’s figure this out. Hopefully we’ll learn more.” Not theists, so much.

      Reply
      • Kalmaro says:

        I did not say you made the claim of nature before the universe, I only discussed the complications that may come from that standpoint. The reason I give towards the supernatural is because this is a situation where the natural does not cut it. For reasons I’ve listed in my previous post. If ‘nature’ is everything that is within the universe and has a beginning with the universe, then it would follow that whatever started nature can not be natural.

        This is why I say that to make the claim “nature has a natural beginning and we will eventually find an answer” is a faith claim. There logically is no way nature can make itself so dismissing other answers for that one to be explained sometime in the future does not seem logical to me. I just do not understand taking that position, unless there is some other underlying reason for doing so.

        Now as my reasoning for this cause I believe in, it is based on the qualities of what could have caused the universe in the first place. Since we have very good reason to believe that the universe did begin at some point then that would suggest some form of cause. Going from that point to God just requires listing the qualities and then comparing them to how God is described in the Bible. It’s true that we can only trace things back so far but logic allows us to go further. Like when we say that whatever caused the universe can not itself be bound by time since it created time. As such, it would be timeless and not have a beginning.

        Let’s also clear one thing up, honest theist do not pick God because they want him to exist. They pick him because he is the simplest and most rational answer. Occum’s razor and all that. We are perfectly fine with admitting we do not know all of the details and we have no problem looking deeper since, for us, finding out how God did things (assuming he exists) is fascinating. We do not just say “God did it” and then go back home and sleep easily knowing that they have sold all scientific inquiries. I’m not sure who started this myth but I can assure you it is not true. There are Christians in every branch of science and they do their job with just as much fervor as their secular coworkers.

        I find it amazing how people who trumpet how important skepticism is but don’t seem to be skeptical of themselves.

        Reply
        • TGM says:

          “If ‘nature’ is everything that is within the universe and has a beginning with the universe, then it would follow that whatever started nature can not be natural.”
          I hear this a lot around here, from you, Frank and others. It sounds reasonable and intuitive. Barring deeper consideration, it’s something I can accept provisionally. It’s also another way of saying the universe was caused by something that is not the universe. The problem is that I don’t hear anyone arguing otherwise. I’ve been a participant in the Great Argument for a while now and I have yet to hear anyone claim that nature caused itself. So who exactly are you arguing against when you make this point? Yes, Hawking did say something peculiar along these lines, but I think (1) it was misunderstood and (2) the only ones I ever see citing him are theists. Non-theists are not using Hawking’s proposition, so your point, while valid, is strawmanish.
          “…but logic allows us to go further. Like when we say that whatever caused the universe can not itself be bound by time since it created time. As such, it would be timeless and not have a beginning. ”
          Again, sounds reasonable until you give any thought to what it could mean to be “timeless.” Existence as we understand it requires a temporal dimension. This is incoherent to me.
          “…the bible…”
          I find no reason to connect anything in the bible with anything cosmic. Even if the bible has some things correct, there is no demonstrated pathway from the cosmic unknown to the words in the bible. Until such a demonstration, anything correct is merely coincidence or crafty interpretation.
          “There are Christians in every branch of science…”
          True, but I’ve read their science related articles and never seem to come across the word “creator” or “god”. So their fidelity is irrelevant.

          Reply
  5. toby says:

    Premise 2 is still a huge logical leap.

    Logical leap 1: Spaceless, Immaterial, Supernatural —The most you could say is that a cause is outside or apart from our universe. You cannot tell us anything of it’s composition.

    Logical Leap 2: Powerful —A sound wave can set off a chain of reactions that causes an avalanche. Since you can’t be certain of the composition of your god you can’t be certain that a small nudge didn’t snowball into a universe.

    Logical leap 3: Uncaused ––Aside from the fact that a necessarily existing being is just an idea no support other than definitional gymnastics, I don’t think you can argue whether or not something was uncaused. In fact you have to do the footwork to prove that anything can be uncaused—is it a valid concept?

    Logical Leap 4: Personal –– No reason to assume this at all. It’s just a way of smuggling in an idea from dualism that minds are somehow separate from brains.

    Reply
  6. Richard Anderson says:

    Use spellcheck next time. Necessary, not necesarry, and necessarily, not necesarilly. Under Premise2, Uncaused.

    Reply

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