God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

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We_Are_VENOM
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God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #1

Post by We_Are_VENOM »

.

First off, by "universe", I mean all physical reality govern by natural law. This would include universes that we know/don’t know about.

1. If God does not exist, then the universe is past eternal.

Justification: We know that the universe exist, and if there is no transcendent supernatural cause, then either

A. the universe either popped into being, uncaused, out of nothing.
B. OR, it has existed for eternity.

I think we can safely remove posit A from the equation (unless there is someone who thinks it is a plausible explanation).

Let’s focus on posit B.

Based on posit B, we need not provide any naturalistic explanation as to the cause of our universe, considering the fact that the term “universe” applies (as mentioned earlier) to all physical reality, which means that any naturalistic explanation one provides is already accounted for as “eternal”.

And if God does not exist, then physical reality (the universe) is all there is, and thus must be eternal.

2. If the universe is not past eternal, then God exists.

Justification: If the universe (all physical reality) is NOT eternal, then it had a beginning.

Since natural law (mother nature) cannot logically be used to explain the origin of its own domain, then an external, supernatural cause is necessary.

If “nature” had a beginning, one cannot logically use nature to explain the origin of nature, and to do so is fallacious.

So, where nature stops, supernatural begins.

3. The universe is not past eternal.

Justification: If the universe is past eternal, then the causal chain of events (cause and effect) within the universe is infinite. But this is impossible, because infinity cannot be traversed or “reached”.

If the past is eternal, that would mean that there are an infinite amount of “days” which lead to today. But in order for us to have “arrived” to today, an infinite amount of days would have to be traversed (one by one), which is impossible, because infinite cannot be “reached”.

Consider thought analogy..

Sandman analogy: Imagine there is a man who is standing above a bottomless hole. By “bottomless”, of course if one was to fall into the hole, he would fall forever and ever and ever.

Now, imagine the man is surrounded by an infinite amount of sand, which is at his disposal.

Imagine if the man has been shoveling sand into this hole for an infinite amount of time (he never began shoveling, or he never stopped shoveling, he has been shoveling forever).

Imagine if the man’s plan was to shovel sand into the hole until he successfully filled the sand from the bottom, all the way to the top of the hole.

How long will it take him to accomplish this? Will he ever accomplish this task? No. Why? Because the sand is bottomless, so no matter how fast he shoveled, or how long he shoveled, the sand will never reach the top.

So lets put it all together…

The sand falling: Represents time travel, and the trajectory of the sand falling south of the top represents time traveling into the past, which is synonymous with past eternity.

The man shoveling: Represents the “present”, as the man is presently shoveling without halt. This is synonymous with our present causal reality. We are presently in a state of constant change, without halt.

Conclusion: If the sand cannot reach the bottom of the hole (because of no boundary/foundation) and it can’t be filled from the bottom-up to the present (man), then how, if there is no past boundary to precedent days, how could we have possibly reached the present day…if there is/was no beginning foundation (day).

However, lets say a gazillion miles down the hole, there is a foundation…then the hole will be filled in a finite amount of time, and it will be filled from the bottom-up.

But ONLY if there is a foundation.

Likewise, we can only reach today if and ONLY IF there is a beginning point of reference, a foundation in the distant past.

4. Therefore, an Uncaused Cause (UCC) must exist: As explained, infinite regression is impossible, so an uncaused cause is absolutely necessary.

This UCC cannot logically be a product of any precedent cause or conditions, thus, it exists necessarily (supplementing the Modal Ontological Argument).

This UCC cannot logically depend on any external entity for it’s existence (supplementing the Modal Ontological Argument).

This UCC is the foundation for any/everything which began to exist, which included by not limited to all physical reality…but mainly, the universe an everything in it.

This UCC would also have to have free will, which explains why the universe began at X point instead of Y point...and the reason is; it began at that point because that is when the UCC decided it should begin...and only a being with free will can decide to do anything.

This UCC would have to have the power to create from nothing (as there was no preexisting physical matter to create from, before it was created).

So, based on the truth value of the argument, what can we conclude of the UCC?

1. It is a supernatural, metaphysically necessary being
2. A being of whom has existed for eternity and can never cease existing
3. A being with the greatest power imaginable (being able to create from nothing)
4. A being with free will, thus, a being with a mind

This being in question is what theists have traditionally recognized as God. God exists.

In closing, I predict the whole "well, based on your argument, God cannot be infinite".

My response to that for now is; first admit the validity of the presented argument, and THEN we will discuss why the objection raised doesn't apply to God.
Venni Vetti Vecci!!

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #511

Post by JoeyKnothead »

We_Are_VENOM wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 10:48 pm A supernatural universe doesn't tell you who you can/can't sleep with...
It gave us Christians for that.
Discovery is finding things that exist.
Invention is using things discovered.

Create that path and engineer a metamorphosis.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #512

Post by The Tanager »

TRANSPONDER wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 9:03 pmThere are only two possibilities that I can see (other than an infinite time loop that is even more counter -intuitive than infinite regression) and that is that originally there was an uncreated near nothing that had the 'potential' to act as though it was Something, or a cosmic mind with the power to plan and create (with no material, mind you) but which had no origin of its' own and that is less plausible, I'd argue than an uncreated nothing that could become Something and experiments showing that Nothing (vacuum) contains energy tend to support that.

A “near-nothing” is still something, so it would still actually be something and not just the potential to become something. The energy in the vacuum is still something. Still, I agree that there seem to be two options: an eternal material something or an eternal immaterial mind.

I reject the former because I believe in the A-theory of time and, if the eternal material something is timeless, that it could not change (by definition) and, therefore, could not cause anything else to happen, thus not being the cause of the temporal universe we exist in.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #513

Post by The Tanager »

Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 5:00 amYou know, that sounded a lot like "infinity is a quantity but not like the number 5 is a quantity." You put in a lot of effort arguing this just so to avoid saying things like there are infinite amount of stars in an infinite universe.

No, I put a lot of effort into saying there is a difference between infinity as a boundary idea (which means infinity cannot be reached) and infinity as a value which can be reached (which is what is required for an A-theory infinite past). If you agree with how I’ve described infinity, then it is not a value that can be reached and, thus, we could not have an A-theory infinite past. So, if one believes in the A-theory of time, then they cannot rationally think the universe is eternal past.
Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 5:00 amSo far so good, but why would that imply my "whole eternal existence would have stayed and continue staying at step 1," rather than always writing a number down and in doing that completing step 1 for the next number and so on.

Because writing a number down is step 2 but step 1 will never end (per the definition of infinity).

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #514

Post by Bust Nak »

The Tanager wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:21 am No, I put a lot of effort into saying there is a difference between infinity as a boundary idea (which means infinity cannot be reached) and infinity as a value which can be reached (which is what is required for an A-theory infinite past). If you agree with how I’ve described infinity, then it is not a value that can be reached and, thus, we could not have an A-theory infinite past.
Why not both? As a boundary idea, it cannot be reached, and as a value, can be reached? Consider counting the following 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. I have not reached the boundary 6, yet I have reached it by counting 6 numbers. It seems you have combined the two concepts of reaching into one and created a false dichotomy.

Or to go back to an infinite universe, how do you reconcile what you said here with the idea of a limitless amount of stars? Is infinite as a value that can be reached required for an infinite number of stars?
Because writing a number down is step 2 but step 1 will never end (per the definition of infinity).
How does the definition of infinity imply step 1 would never end? You don't even need to do anything for step 1, it is instantaneous since it's just a condition, the actual step that takes any time is step 2, completing step 2 trivially fulfils the next step 1.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #515

Post by Purple Knight »

Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 5:17 am
Purple Knight wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 2:33 pm Perhaps I'm trying to express something by analogy that isn't working too well. Infinity, I have always thought, was a mathematical concept. To find infinity in reality would be perplexing. That doesn't mean you can't, it just means it would be perplexing.
If you accept that as possible if perplexing, aren't you contradicting yourself when you grant We_Are_VENOM that infinite regression is impossible, even tentatively?
My usual modus operandi is to grant that what seems impossible probably is. I go by my senses and my reason until something contradicts that. Obviously if someone demonstrates that the universe is past-eternal then it is. I just refuse to believe that without such a demonstration.
Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 5:17 am
Infinite space is easily imaginable if it is empty. If it's not empty, then it becomes perplexing. It's like having infinite chickens. It breaks the laws of finiteness that are part of the reality we operate on every day. With infinite chickens you could kill any particular chicken and still have that chicken, for in infinity, there still must be that one again, eventually.
Why that chicken and not another chicken exactly like it in every way?
It's like in Rick and Morty. Rick could kill Morty, and go to one of the infinite universes along the central finite curve and retrieve not another Morty, but that Morty, identical and completely indistinguishable up until the moment the Rick in universe A decided to chop the poor boy's head off and the one in universe B didn't. Arguably, until the decision happened, they were the same individual.

This seems silly to me and I think it seems silly to Venom as well. There's no reason for me to claim I disagree when I don't, just because I could theoretically be wrong.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #516

Post by Purple Knight »

The Tanager wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:21 amI put a lot of effort into saying there is a difference between infinity as a boundary idea (which means infinity cannot be reached) and infinity as a value which can be reached (which is what is required for an A-theory infinite past). If you agree with how I’ve described infinity, then it is not a value that can be reached and, thus, we could not have an A-theory infinite past. So, if one believes in the A-theory of time, then they cannot rationally think the universe is eternal past.
This is what I meant with the infinite history book, you just articulated it a lot better than I did.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #517

Post by TRANSPONDER »

The Tanager wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:16 am
TRANSPONDER wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 9:03 pmThere are only two possibilities that I can see (other than an infinite time loop that is even more counter -intuitive than infinite regression) and that is that originally there was an uncreated near nothing that had the 'potential' to act as though it was Something, or a cosmic mind with the power to plan and create (with no material, mind you) but which had no origin of its' own and that is less plausible, I'd argue than an uncreated nothing that could become Something and experiments showing that Nothing (vacuum) contains energy tend to support that.

A “near-nothing” is still something, so it would still actually be something and not just the potential to become something. The energy in the vacuum is still something. Still, I agree that there seem to be two options: an eternal material something or an eternal immaterial mind.

I reject the former because I believe in the A-theory of time and, if the eternal material something is timeless, that it could not change (by definition) and, therefore, could not cause anything else to happen, thus not being the cause of the temporal universe we exist in.
That's the problem. A near -nothing is still something and requires an origin and thus a creator. The problem there is that a creator requires a creator. The only way out of this impasse is to posit an entity with the power to create but which wasn't created itself (which is as counter - intuitive as one could wish) or the idea of something that didn't need to be created which can only be nothing, which reasonably can be infinite in both time and space, where Something rationally can't be. And that has to be posited as a nothing that can naturally generate energy which of course is matter doing something, or rather matter is energy Not doing something. You rightly point up that energy sounds like Something but I make the point that it is near enough nothing that maybe it doesn't need to be deliberately created. It requires less to pop out of nowhere than a god, at least.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #518

Post by brunumb »

The Tanager wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:16 am I reject the former because I believe in the A-theory of time and, if the eternal material something is timeless, that it could not change (by definition) and, therefore, could not cause anything else to happen, thus not being the cause of the temporal universe we exist in.
But then again, you have to remember that the eternal material something works in mysterious ways. ;)
Christianty: 2000 years of making it up as you go along.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #519

Post by JoeyKnothead »

brunumb wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:06 pm
The Tanager wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:16 am I reject the former because I believe in the A-theory of time and, if the eternal material something is timeless, that it could not change (by definition) and, therefore, could not cause anything else to happen, thus not being the cause of the temporal universe we exist in.
But then again, you have to remember that the eternal material something works in mysterious ways. ;)
And don't like him, how it is you carry on.
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Invention is using things discovered.

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Re: God Must Exist: Infinite Regression is Impossible

Post #520

Post by The Tanager »

Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:51 amWhy not both?

If this is repeating your earlier claim about who has the burden here, I don’t think I have the burden of showing “why not both.” You have the burden of showing why both. To argue that I have the burden of showing why not both is akin to a theist shifting the burden to the atheist by saying “why couldn’t theism be the answer to X?”
Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:51 amAs a boundary idea, it cannot be reached, and as a value, can be reached? Consider counting the following 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. I have not reached the boundary 6, yet I have reached it by counting 6 numbers. It seems you have combined the two concepts of reaching into one and created a false dichotomy.

The question under consideration is whether infinity can be a boundary and a value that is reached. Giving an example of a number that can be both does nothing to prove whether infinity can be both.
Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:51 amOr to go back to an infinite universe, how do you reconcile what you said here with the idea of a limitless amount of stars? Is infinite as a value that can be reached required for an infinite number of stars?

I see a “limitless amount of stars” as an unbounded concept (i.e., a boundary idea), not a value that can be reached.
Bust Nak wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:51 amHow does the definition of infinity imply step 1 would never end? You don't even need to do anything for step 1, it is instantaneous since it's just a condition, the actual step that takes any time is step 2, completing step 2 trivially fulfils the next step 1.

You absolutely have something to do for step 1. You have to make sure a previous action was completed, one that wouldn’t have been completed unless a different previous action was completed, so you’ve also got to make sure that previous action was completed...which wouldn’t have been completed unless a different previous action was completed, so you’ve also got to make sure that previous action was completed...ad infinitum. The pre-writing step to writing, say, the number 3 will never end because pushing the question back a step goes on for infinity. You said the relevant definition of infinite was limitless or endless in scope earlier. Thus, step 1 will never end.

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