|Posted: Sat Mar 25, 2017 5:14 pm The Modal Ontological Argument|
|First off, let me take the time to thank both my opponent (wiploc) for agreeing to debate me on this subject. Let me also thank the creators and moderators of this forum for providing an excellent platform for such a debate.
I hope for an engaging discussion. My opinion agreed to my use of the same OP from my last debate on this very subject (with rikuoa), with slight editions.
My contention is that the MOA is a logically sound/valid argument for the existence of God. My opponent seems to think otherwise.
That being said, lets get on with it..
Oh, I forgot; before I begin the actual argument, a few terms/concepts must be addressed. One of those concepts involves possible world semantics. What is a "possible world" (PW)?
A PW is a set of circumstances or any proposition that could be true or could be false…or a set of circumstances or any proposition that could be necessarily true, or necessarily false.
Example: Donald Trump is the President of the United States.
If this statement is true, then there is a possible world at which Donald Trump is President of the United States. However, since Donald Trump could very well NOT be the President of the U.S., then it follows that there is also a possible world at which Donald Trump isn't President of the U.S.
So, in essence, there is a possible world (set of circumstances) at which Donald Trump is the President of the U.S. (and vice versa). In other words, it's possible. It could happen, which makes the truth value of President Trump contingently truth, since it is equally possible for Mr. Trump to NOT be President.
Contingent truths are not to be confused with necessary truths. What are necessary truths? Necessary truths are truths that are either true or false REGARDLESS of the circumstances. So in essence, necessary truths are true in ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS. Good examples of necessary truths are mathematical truths, such as 2+2=4 <--- this is true in all possible circumstances and can never be false under any circumstance.
Before we move on, just to rehash..
Contingency truths: Propositions that are true or false, based on circumstances (could be true, could be false).
Necessary truths: Propositions that are true or false, REGARDLESS of circumstances (if it is true, it is impossible to be false [vice versa]).
Now that our preliminary terms have been defined, let's turn the attention to the definition of God, and keep in mind that I will be using "God" and "Maximally Great Being" (MGB) interchangeably throughout the argument.
God, at least as defined by Christian theism, is a maximally great being (MGB). By maximally great, we mean that God is..
Omniscient: All knowing, knowing the truth value of all propositions.
Omnipotent: Can do anything that is logically possible.
Omnipresent: Presence is manifested, whether physically or spiritually, everywhere, at any given time
Omnibenevolent: The ultimate source of goodness, morally perfect.
These "omni" properties (OP) are known as "great making" properties..as a being's greatness is measured based on these properties and the value of these properties. A MGB is a being of whom these properties are "maxed out" to such a degree at which there is nothing left to add, making it impossible to think of a "greater" being.
A MGB would also have to exist necessarily, meaning it would be impossible for such a being to NOT exist or fail to exist. Why? Because it is virtually impossible for one to gain possession of maxed out OP based upon contingent circumstances. So, if one was to possess these OP, then one would possess them necessarily.
A natural born human being or entity cannot possess MAXED out OP, but a necessary being whose existence is not dependent upon anything external to it, can indeed possess these properties, and these properties would be as necessary as the MGB himself (itself).
There are other reasons why it is necessary that there must exist a being whose existence is necessary (cannot fail to exist), which I will discuss later on in the argument.
So, now we've defined our terms, and we've even defined the MGB..now, on to the actual argument..
1. It is possible that a maximally great being exists
2. If it is possible that a maximally great being exists, then a maximally great being exists in some possible world.
3. If a maximally great being exists in some possible world, then it exists in every possible world.
4. If a maximally great being exists in every possible world, then it exists in the actual world (our world).
5. If a maximally great being exists in the actual world, then a maximally great being exists.
6. Therefore, a maximally great being exists.
I will justify each premise, one at a time.
1. It is possible that a maximally great being exists:
Justification for P1: In other words, for all we know, a MGB could exist. To "prove" that God doesn't exist, wiploc would either have to..
A. Possess the properties of omniscience and omnipotence and thereby be all knowing in knowledge, with a presence that is manifested at all possible locations within the universe or beyond the universe. Only then will he definitively be able to say "I know there is no God, because I am omniscient, and if that is not enough, I've been to every place there is to go in the universe (and beyond), and there is no God ANYWHERE." But we know that that is beyond my opponent's capabilities (and anyone's).
B. Prove that God does not exist as a result of logical absurdities that arise based on the definition of "God". So he would have to prove that God does not exist based on the simple fact that the mere idea of God (as defined) is logically incoherent. In other words, the concept of God is absurd.
If my opponent feels this way, then the burden of proof is on him to demonstrate to us where the absurdity lies.
I maintain that the concept of God, as defined in the argument, does not violate any laws of logic and is a logically coherent concept, making such a being's existence conceivable and at the very least POSSIBLE.
So, until further notice, P1 (It is possible that a maximally great being exists) stands.
2. If it is possible that a maximally great being exists, then a maximally great being exists in some possible world:
Justification for P2: Remember, in Possible World (PW) semantics, when something is "possibly true," it means that there are a set of circumstances at which the proposition (X is true) has true value.
For example, if there is a possible world at which Donald Trump is elected President, that is the same as saying "there are a set of circumstances that will allow for Donald Trump to reach 270 delegates to win the Presidency". Now, if that is to happen, there is a "world" (set of circumstances) that it is possible.
Likewise; if it is possible that a MGB exists, then there is at least some possible set of circumstances that allows such a being to exist.
P2 logically follows from P1, of course.
3. If a maximally great being exists in some possible world, then it exists in every possible world:
Justification for P3: If there is at least ONE possible world at which a MGB exists, then it follows that a MGB's must exist in EVERY possible world. Why? Because a necessary being's existence can't be possible in one world, but impossible in another world. Necessary truths are true in all possible worlds. For example, 2+2 cannot equal 4 on planet Earth, but equal 14 on Jupiter.
If 2+2 is 4 on Earth, it is 4 EVERYWHERE. So, if God's existence is possible in at least some set of possible circumstances, then it must be possible in all set of circumstances.
4. If a maximally great being exists in every possible world, then a MGB exists in the actual world:
Justification for P4: The actual world that we live in is among the lists of "possible worlds". Necessary truths are true in all possible worlds, including the actual world (our world).
5: If a maximally great being exists in the actual world, then a maximally great being exists:
Justification for P5: Self-explanatory.
So, from P1-P5, it has been demonstrated that if it is possible for a MGB to exist, it follows that a MGB must actually exist. It is worth noting, as I'm sure I will repeatedly say throughout this discourse, is that ALL POSSIBLE NECESSARY TRUTHS must be ACTUALLY TRUE.
Why? Because a proposition cannot be possibly necessarily true, but actually false. So for example, it cannot be possibly necessarily true that 2+2=4, but yet 2+2 is actually 14. Because if 2+2 is actually 14, then it was never possible for 2+2 to equal 4. That is a fundamental point if we are to understand modal logic correctly.
So, in a nutshell, God's existence is either necessarily true, or necessarily false. There is no gray area. It is either impossible for God to cease existing, or, it is impossible for God to exist, period. Again, no gray area.
Before I give the floor to my opponent, I'd to briefly touch on this "necessary" business, as I mentioned I would do earlier. God's existence is necessary because it is impossible for it to be otherwise. Why? Because existence, in general, is necessary. Whether or not you believe the universe is necessary (existing eternally), or if you believe that God is necessary (existing eternally)…either way, mere existence is necessary. Something/Someone had to have always been here. Someone or something have to be eternal in its existence.
However, it is impossible for the universe to exist necessarily, based on the evidence that we have for a finite universe and the philosophical arguments we can give to negate the idea of infinite regress through time. So it follows that a timeless, immaterial being of astronomical power with free will exists..a being who doesn't owe its existence to no ONE or no THING besides its self.
As you can see, I sprinkled a little "Kalam" argument on the MOA, and I did it on purpose. Why? Because it supplements the MOA, as it demonstrates why God's existence is necessary, and a necessary existence is one of the attributes (for lack of a better term) of a MGB as defined in the argument (not by coincidence).
It is because of these reasons as I've just demonstrated why I believe the MOA is a logically sound/valid argument for the existence of God. I will now wait for my opponent's responses and address them accordingly.
Post 11: Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:12 pm
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I'm having bad heart palpitations today. It doesn't hurt, and it's not dangerous, but it is powerfully distracting. My wife says it makes me "radiate hostility."
A woman called to thank me for giving blood today, and she expressed concern. A stranger on the phone is worried about me? Maybe I am radiating hostility.
And my nephew is going to be reading this, so I want to say two things:
1. I'm palpitating badly.
2. When I complained about your calling me disingenuous, you defended your right to--as I see it--invent a mental state for me and claim it as truth.
I feel like I have copped a tone. Inappropriate.
Right, you said that.
No, it just doesn't. There are gods that aren't necessary. They exist in some possible worlds, but not all of them. Those gods can exist even if the MGB doesn't.
You don't get to define things out of existence any more than you can define them into existence.
I grew up in Kansas. The Christianity I'm familiar with is trinitarian. One god are three; three gods is one. I remember this even if you don't.
Maybe you haven't read the early parts of the bible.
I really don't know why you're having me do this. I direct your attention to step 1 of the MOA.
That's absurd. Christians are all over the place on gods' attributes. There are five relevant responses to the PoE (problem of evil):
1. God isn't really omnipotent.
2. God isn't really omniscient.
3. God isn't really omnibenevolent.
4. Evil doesn't exist.
5. Screw logic. I believe what I believe regardless of logic.
I've had Christians use every one of those responses to the problem of evil.
I'm told that liberation theology posits that Jehovah doesn't know the future. (He was just guessing when he thought that cutting the ends of their dicks off would make the Jews happy.) I've been told by Christians that the bible nowhere claims that god is omnipotent.
I won't call you disingenuous, but there is no reason for you to make this absurd claim.
You cannot imagine a universe existing in which a universe does not exist. There are no worldless possible worlds. A world, therefore, exists in every possible world. The world is therefore, by definition, necessary.
I do not see the point of your trying to deny this.
No, that's not the question.
You're inventing a new system of modal logic just to evade one obvious conclusion? That takes special pleading to the extreme.
By the same test, your god is contingent. There are possible worlds with other gods. There are possible worlds with no gods.
The web site doesn't include enough nested quotes for some of these things to make sense. Since you want me to respond to them, I have to provide context. You wrote, "But we know via science and philosophical reasoning that the universe could NOT have existed necessarily." This is the claim that you offer to support.
It is about a category (called "possible") that includes both necessary things and contingent things. If we used a category that included contingent and impossible things together (call the category "not necessary") then the MOA would "prove" that your god does not exist.
Let's try it:
Step 1. A maximally great being is not necessary.
Step 2. If it is possible that a maximally great being is not necessary,
then a maximally great being does not exist in some possible world.
Step 3. If a maximally great being does not exist in some possible world,
then it does not exist in every possible world.
Step 4. If a maximally great being does not exist in every possible world,
then it does not exist in the actual world (our world).
Step 5. If a maximally great being does not exist in the actual world,
then a maximally great being does not exist.
Step 6. Therefore, a maximally great being does not exist.
Note that, but for the fact that step 1 of this version is true rather than false, this version is exactly as strong as your preferred version.
Not without conceding that non-physical things other than god exist.
I see no justification for that claim.
We have demonstrated that this isn't true. A possible world is any world without contradictions. There is no contradiction in not having gods, so some possible worlds don't have gods. Therefore, MGBs are not possible. They don't exist in any possible world.
And yet you don't believe in the NFST (necessary flying sea turtle), do you?
Why not? The logical proof of that is exactly as strong as the logical proof of the MGB. So why don't you believe in the NFST? Believing in the one without the other looks like special pleading.
I so request.
Okay then. And I must be SUPPOSED to bring up the problem of evil.
So you do believe in the necessary flying sea turtle?
By definition, a possible world is any world without contradictions.
There is no contradiction in a godless world. (Cue attempt at changing the topic to the KCA.)
Therefore, godless worlds are possible.
Some possible worlds are godless.
Therefore, no god exists in all possible worlds.
Therefore, no necessary god exists.
That's an ironclad proof. Go ahead and tell me again that I have offered no good reason.
You "addressed" it by making up a mental state for me and trying to pass it off as fact. I won't call that disingenuous.
Can I just duck this one? I may have misunderstood something you wrote, and the point is hardly relevant to the MOA.
Think of it as a parody of your argument, as an illustration of the fact that "greatness" is not defined in the MOA.
Arbitrariness requires objectivity?
Is true mercy like the true Scotsman? Is it different from regular mercy? If you are changing the subject from regular mercy, can you give us a hint as to what subject you changed to? Maybe "true" mercy is actually cruelty. After all, only gods get to have an opinion on that, right?
Bertrand Russell wrote that people only want things to be true in some newfangled way when they've given up on them being true in the regular way.
I'm sorry, you've got that backwards. You just undefined "mercy" so that you can't have any opinions about it at all. I, on the other hand, am talking about regular mercy, with which we are all acquainted. So it is the naturalists who know what they're talking about.
Any time you're ready to talk about step 1 of the MOA, just let me know. I'm willing to truncate this again if it means we can get back to the core subject.
Post 12: Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:48 pm
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I can't imagine that. I can't imagine you imagining it either.
So which is it, sixty percent merciful and forty percent just, three percent percent merciful and ninety-seven percent just? Didn't you just say that no human can define the objective characteristics of god?
Or is god knowable when you're talking but unknowable when I'm talking? Is that the rule? Because it looks like special pleading.
I don't know why you say that.
That's my point. If we don't know what you mean by "great," then calling your god "maximally great" is just word salad.
According to you, we cannot know what benevolence is anyway. So there's no point in pretending that "maximally great" is a meaningful term.
Again, you've got that backwards. On naturalism we can look in the dictionary. Or we can discuss terms and agree on meanings.
According to you, we don't have a clue.
On naturalism, maybe.
You want to talk about regular greatness or magically objective greatness? Pick one position and stick to it.
Presumably that's not the magically objective standard of greatness, and obviously it isn't any natural standard of greatness. It must be your very own standard.
And I think, though I may be confused, that we're down to where we talk about the MOA, which is what I want to talk about, so it is what I originally posted about. I think, therefore, that--except for the material I lost at the top of your post, and which I still hope to recover without rewriting from scratch--that I'm done here.
Let me know if I missed any points that you'd like me to cover.
Post 13: Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:05 pm
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Thanks to Riku for telling me how to find my saved drafts. Apparently I failed to save my draft. So here now is my response to the beginning of FtK's last post:
Godless worlds don't have any gods at all. That includes MGBs (maximally great beings).
You defined the MGB as necessary. We know for a fact that there are no necessary gods. It follows that the MGB is impossible.
Now you're putting words in my mouth.
I don't think you can defend that claim, but at least you didn't attribute it to me.
And you know about this evidence? Can you share your secret? Is this a scientific consensus or some personal authority?
I don't believe you can defend this claim either. If Vincent the incandescent mayfly exists for twenty minutes in every possible world, then he is by definition necessary, isn't he? Isn't the definition of "necessary" that you exist in every possible world?
There is nothing in the definition of "necessary" about being unbegun.
And no single definition of "begin" has your god as unbegun and the rest of the world as begun anyway. If your god is unbegun, so is the rest of the alliverse. Equivocation (surreptitiously two-stepping between incompatible definitions) is the only way to make it seem like one is begun and the other not.
But I'm open to the possibility that I'm wrong. I'm interested in your claim that necessary things are unbegun. I don't see how that could be, so, if you've got a case here, I'd like to read it.
I don't know of any such arguments. I mean, aside from William Lane Craig pretending that he doesn't understand transfinite math when he obviously does.
I finally found a couple of physicists who say they don't believe that infinities exist in the real world. (Implications: All motion consists of a series of tiny teleportations. The circumference of the universe has jaggies.) But that's a new thing. Up to this time, I've never run across that. And I have no idea what the current scientific consensus is.
Is there a scientific consensus that infinities don't exist in the real world? If so, I want to know about it.
Or, if you know of an argument so compelling that I must disregard the scientific consensus, I want to know about that too.
Bertrand Russell wrote something like this: Where the experts agree, the layman does well not to hold the opposite opinion. Where the experts disagree, the layman does well not to have any opinion at all.
But, either way. Give me a scientific consensus or give me a proof that discredits all those scientist types. I'm interested either way.
I don't understand this argument.
I'm going to quote, I believe, Piet Hein:
The universe may be as great as they say,
But it wouldn't be missed if it didn't exist.
If the universe (and, remember, I use that word to refer to the alliverse) didn't exist, there wouldn't be anything. There wouldn't be a world. You would have a worldless world, and that would be a contradiction.
Every possible world has a world. Therefore, worlds are necessary.
And you don't get invent a remainder (the part of the alliverese that isn't in the partiverse) and make up rules for it.
And I never made the claim that you are trying to attribute to me so that you can attempt to refute it anyway. It is not my position that godless universes have to be necessary.
You said it was virtually impossible. Also, you wavered on whether it was the universe or just the physical universe. Something like that anyway.
You know I hate anything that delays our attempt to address step 1.
That's right! Any truth that can be discussed before step 1 must have primacy.
Any world without contradiction is a possible world.
Some godless worlds are without contradiction.
Therefore, some godless worlds are possible worlds.
No god can exist in all possible worlds (including the godless ones) because that would be a contradiction.
Therefore, no necessary (existing in all possible worlds) gods exist.
Therefore, MGBs do defy logic. They cannot exist.
No, it is a contradiction. I cannot imagine a god existing in a godless world, no more than I can imagine a square circle. And you can't imagine it either.
There's nothing logically incoherent about an uncaused universe. Therefore, according to your reasoning, such universes must exist in some possible worlds.
MGBs cannot exist because we have stipulated that they are necessary. That is, if it exists at all, it exists in all possible worlds. They cannot exist in one without existing in all.
But some possible worlds don't have MGBs.
Therefore, no MGB exists in any possible worlds.
This does not preclude other gods, possible gods, many of whom Christians would call their own.
Post 14: Sat Apr 15, 2017 4:23 am
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I'm back, like a spinal cord.
Then they are contingent and didn't have to be here.
No, they can't...not if the MGB is necessary and these other gods are contingent, which is the case even in your own scenario (they exist in some possible worlds, but not all of them).
My point was; if you define a logically incoherent god, then such a god cannot exist. So, it depends on how it is defined.
You may be familiar with Christianity and the "Trinity". But guess what? I am a Christian and a Trinitarian, and I assure you that Christianity is monotheistic. All three members of the Trinity are of one "essence", and are the same "God". One God that has been revealed in three persons (the Father, Son, Holy Spirit).
I was gonna argue otherwise, but then I recall debating a Jehovah's Witness over whether or not God is omniscient. Either way, the Bible is clear, but some people, due to willful ignorance or down-right disingenuous-ness, will claim otherwise.
I don't see a case being made regarding the problem of evil (from you). But I do see a lot of assertions.
Yet, the Bible is filled with prophecies that have been fulfilled. See, that's what I mean; either willful ignorance, or disingenuous-ness.
Guessing? How about just asking? Or better yet, lets just assume that God's will is sovereign over man's happiness.
If you read the Bible, and you are unable to draw the conclusion that God is the greatest conceivable being, then you (not personally, but in general) need to see a doctor.
True, but then again, I have no reason to "imagine a universe existing in which a universe does not exist". So what?
Which makes my point or me. In both debates on this subject (with you and Rikuo), I maintained that mere existence is necessary, which is the same as saying "a world is necessary"...because mere existence is "a world".
So, thanks for agreeing to something that I've been saying since my opening argument.
Second, you are equivocating "world". First you said "a world" is necessary. Then you said "therefore, the world (this world) is by definition, necessary.
A world: In general.
The/This world: Specifically.
This is an equivocation...and not only that, but it is demonstrably false. The universe (this world) is contingent. It didn't have to be here...and something that didn't have to be here can hardly be considered to be necessary.
Denying it? I said it first (the latter).
Sure, and these "other" gods would owe their existence to a MGB. This is no different than angels, who, as powerful as they are, still owe their existence to God (MGB).
No problem. But first, just for clarity; are you maintaining that the universe (natural reality, anywhere), is eternal/infinite, never having a beginning? Is that your position?
Which is basically saying, "there are some things that are necessary, and some things that are contingent".
This is the same sort of reverse-MOA that you used prior. Yet, you are using it now as if it is something new that has been introduced to the discussion. I already responded to this on more than one occasion.
I have no problem conceding that non-physical things other than God exists: angels, demons, concepts, etc.
They hardly ever do.
And what you fail to realize is; there are certain implications to your statements. When you say MGB's are not possible, you are saying that they are IMPOSSIBLE. So if they are impossible, that would mean that physical reality exists necessarily.
If physical reality is necessary, then the universe is past-eternal. However, there lies the contradiction. A past-eternal universe is logically absurd. It absolutely/positively, cannot reflect reality.
And if it cannot reflect reality, then we have to appeal to something else in order to explain the effect (a universe which began to exist). And since you can't logically use the universe (or anything within the universe) to explain the origins of the universe, you have to appeal to something beyond the universe to explain its origins.
Now, I know this is a difficult concept for you to grasp, but hey, I don't make the rules.
This NFST is just "God" under a different name/title. And yes, God can manifest himself into a flying sea turtle if he so desired.
Well, make your case.
I believe that God can manifest himself into whatever form he sees fit..and if that is a flying sea turtle, then it is a flying sea turtle.
I've already addressed this, and again, no one is "attempting to change the topic to the KCA". The KCA is used to supplement a key premise in my argument, so I appealed to it.
In the same way, btw, that you are apparently appealing to the problem of evil to make your case.
I guess what is considered good is in the eye of the beholder.
Yet, I clearly defined what "greatness" entails.
Absolutely. Of course, we could demonstrate this by me simply asking you to justify why things like justice, mercy, forgiveness, kindness, love...and why those things are objectively good. But since we both know you can't...lets just concede the point and move on.
I am saying, how do we know when to show mercy, or inflict punishment? How do we know when to inflict punishment, or show mercy? What do we go by? Gut feeling? Situationals? Circumstances?
My point is, God does not go by gut feelings...he simply "knows" when to do what, why, and how. No finite human being can ever "fully" know, which is why we simply try to abide by the principals we believe he laid out to us in the Bible.
Again, I know that answer isn't good enough for you, but then again, your answers aren't necessarily good enough for me, either.
Ok, so what is mercy, and when do you exhibit it, why, and how? Tell me, oh wise one.
Its funny, because again, as I told rikuo..the entire argument hinges on Step 1, and I would have loved to discuss it. However, you did the same thing he did, get off track and start talking about irrelevancies.
Now, you want to talk all of a sudden. LOL.
Post 15: Sun Apr 16, 2017 2:22 pm
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I can imagine God existing in a perfecting stationary state (never being in motion). In this case, time is nonexistent. And 13.7 billion years ago, God beginning to create, thus, creating time.
Not only can I imagine it, but that is about the only way that it could have happened if we are to rid ourselves of absurdities. If you have any other viable alternatives, I am open.
I think those characteristics are situational, and I don't believe one can put an arbitrary percentage on it.
God can be known, but what/how much we know is a different story. Kind of like the same concept that naturalists use with science, you know, such as how we "know" life came from non-life, yet we don't know "how".
Because, if you grew up in Viking culture, you may have been brought up to believe that mercy is for the weak. If you grew up in Mother Teresa's household, you may have been brought up to believe that mercy is everything.
The question is, which one is it (on naturalism)? Science isn't in any position to make moral or ethical judgments...so if you are a naturalists, you recognize there is this "thing" called moral benevolence...where does it come from and who gets to decide what is what?
Yet, I explained in the OP what I meant by "great".
Actually, what I said was; on NATURALISM (your view) we don't have an objective standard as to what benevolence is. The point is; if you believe in objective moral values, you have to have an objective standard by which you base these values on. On naturalism, there IS no objective standard. So it is circular reasoning.
The only thing that matters in this case is if these attributes (omnis) are possibly true. So regardless of whether you think the attributes are meaningful is irrelevant.
You are the one that said "many things qualify a MGB" and I am simply asking you what are those things, besides the ones that I already mentioned.
Well, we can just go with that, then.
Is it possible for a being to have magically objective greatness? On naturalism or otherwise? The answer is yes, and so far I haven't seen anything to say otherwise.
I don't see how that is in conflict with magically objective greatness. But hey.
I said what I had to say, and unless you want to discuss these things further, I have nothing more to add.
Post 16: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:17 pm
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If Godless world's are possible, the universe is eternal...but it is impossible for the universe to be exist eternally...therefore, a being we call "God" is necessary.
I also justified why a MGB is necessary. What I'd like is a solid refutation of the justification.
I don't know who "we" is..but what I do know is that I am not included in it.
No, I simply implied the default position that you must have after you negate one of only two possible options.
Any contemporary text book on cosmology will tell you that the universe began to exist. But, at your request, I could give you a quick, free lesson on contemporary cosmology..and also sprinkle a little philosophy in there as well.
Sure, but if that were to happen, there would be no way to naturally explain Vincent's existence. You can't put that kind of thing in a test tube and conduct an experiment, and that's the point; it would be beyond nature...supernatural.
Yes there is. A being cannot "reach" necessity based off of contingent circumstances. It is either you have it, or you don't. If you don't have it, you can't get it...and if you do have it, you can't get rid of it.
Sure. We are specifically talking about necessary being(s), though..so..I repeat; One cannot reach necessity based on contingent circumstances. I briefly addressed this above. If you need further clarification, let me know.
Let me put it to you this way; if the universe is eternal, time is infinite. If time is infinite, there were an infinite amount of past days to reach the present day, correct?
However, that cannot be the case, because if you cannot traverse an infinite amount of days (one by one) to successfully arrive at any specific day.
That would be like if I told you if you take an infinite amount of steps down an infinitely long road, and after you've taken the infinite amount of steps, there will be a trillion dollars waiting on you...all yours to keep.
Do you think you will ever "arrive" at the money? No, it is impossible. It is the same concept with the universe and events in time. Can't happen. If it can't happen, then time must have had a beginning because you see; you can only reach a discrete "point" on the time scale if you have a beginning point of reference.
The beginning point of reference is Gen 1:1, "In the beginning.."
Actual infinities don't exist in the real world, but potential infinities. Google actual/potential infinities the difference.
There will be a scientific consensus once you can tell me when you will collect your trillion dollars in the scenario above.
Go on, take the money and run..
Go on, take the money and run..
Existence is necessary..but physical existence is contingent.
Non sequitur. There could be a supernatural reality, beyond the scope of the physical universe. Now, I know that is an option that you'd rather not entertain, but it is an option, nevertheless.
Physical worlds aren't.
I have the right to appeal to whichever alternative that has the most explanatory power to produce the effect.
It is not my position, either.
I am not aware of any non-physical universes.
A godless world is not possible, because a world without God would be past-eternal. But a past-eternal world is logically absurd. Therefore, a timeless cause is necessary.
If you can show me how the universe can exist eternally in its past, I will grant your point that a godless world is possible. But, you can't, so you won't.
Then go on, take the money and run..
Post 17: Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:44 pm
Like this post (1): rikuoamero
Round Three is what I'm gonna call this.
Wiploc's First Post of Round Three.
Modal Ontological Argument
Here's the MOA again. You don't have to read it; it's the same as before. Maybe you want to skip over it now and refer back to it later? Anyway, here it is.
Step 1. A Maximally Great Being Is Possible. (Premise)
Step 2. If it is possible that a maximally great being exists,
then a maximally great being exists in some possible world. (PWS definition of "possible")
Step 3. If a maximally great being exists in some possible world,
then it exists in every possible world. (Definition of MGB)
Step 4. If a maximally great being exists in every possible world,
then it exists in the actual world (our world). (Because the actual world is possible.)
Step 5. If a maximally great being exists in the actual world,
then a maximally great being exists. (By definition)
Step 6. Therefore, a maximally great being exists. (From 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5)
Steps 2 thru 6 are bulletproof. (I'm not saying step 3 is true. I'm just saying it is a definition, a given, in this version of the argument.)
That leaves step 1 as the issue, the challenge, the matter under discussion.
But even if we didn't know where the problem lay, we would still know there was a problem. Let's have analogy:
Driver: "What's wrong with my car?"
Mechanic: "I'm not finding a problem. The transmission fluid is clean. Your sparkplug gaps are perfect."
Driver: "Why won't it start?"
Mechanic: "The fuel is good. The brakes are new. I'm really not seeing a problem."
Driver: "It doesn't run! There's definitely a problem."
Mechanic: "No, look how clean the seatbelts are.
Any reasonable person can tell there's a problem with that car even if the problem is not located.
Likewise, anyone should be able to tell that the MOA is bogus because it will "prove" anything you are willing to slap the adjective "necessary" on. Do necessary flying sea turtles (NFST) exist? The MOA says yes. Does a necessary large herd of mile-tall free-roaming elephants in Kansas exist? The MOA says yes. Do necessary unicorns exist? Yes. Necessary Flying Spaghetti Monsters? Yes.
According to the MOA, everything that you can arbitrarily label "necessary" exists.
If a syllogism produces garbage conclusions, the syllogism is not sound.
The MOA produces garbage conclusions.
Therefore, the MOA is not sound.
We know this. There's no getting around it. Even if we didn't know where the flaw was, we would know the MOA is as worthless as a car motor that won't run.
If you actually believed in the logic of the MOA, you would believe that Jenny the Necessary Flying Sea Turtle (NFST) exists. The MOA says she exists; if you believe in the MOA--and you're not being inconsistent--then you believe in Jenny.
Does FtK (For the Kingdom) believe in Jenny? He hedges. He doesn't say yes and he doesn't say no. He says, inexplicably, that Jenny is god, that god could assume the form of Jenny if he wanted.
That's a horrible thing to say. It's vicious libel.
Jenny isn't Jehovah. Jenny never created a universe. Jenny never committed genocide. Jenny is just a dubiously aerodynamic reptile who happens to exist in every possible world. If FtK wants a creator god, he'll have to look elsewhere.
Does FtK actually believe that everything that can be called "necessary" exists? I can't imagine that he does.
If you don't believe in the existence of Jenny the NFST and in everything else that can arbitrarily be called "necessary," then you should believe that the MOA is fatally flawed.
The MOA produces garbage; the MOA is garbage.
So, as established above, we would know the MOA was broken even if we didn't specifically know where. But we do know where. Steps 2 thru 6 are perfect, and step 1 is perfectly wrong.
Step 1. A Maximally Great Being Is Possible. (Premise)
That is an obvious untruth.
All worlds without logical contradiction are possible worlds.
Some godless worlds are without logical contradiction.
Therefore, some godless worlds are possible worlds.
Therefore, no god can exist in all possible worlds.
So step 1 of the MOA is a false premise. It is an obviously false premise, indisputably so.
How does FtK respond to this news? He changes the topic like a shady car salesman.
Buyer: "This Mustang doesn't start."
Salesman: "Let me show you this Mazda. Two-tone, low mileage."
Buyer: "I'm here for the Mustang. You called me in to look at the Mustang."
Salesman: "The Mustang is excellent. You must have the Mustang. A prestige vehicle."
Buyer: "But it doesn't start."
Salesman: "Look at this Mazda!"
Every time we show FtK that the MOA proves god does not exist, he says, "Look at the KCA (Kalam cosmological argument)."
It's as if he doesn't really believe in the MOA. His heart is with the KCA.
Flawed arguments can have true conclusions. You cannot support the soundness or validity of the MOA by showing that the KCA reaches the same conclusion.
The MOA proves the existence of gods and nonexistence of gods with equal facility. Does this give FtK pause? Not at all. When he likes the MOA's conclusion, he accepts it as truth; when he doesn't like it, he changes the subject.
That is not a legitimate way to establish the soundness of an argument.
FtK's Defense of Step 1
In my introductory remarks, I pointed out that Alvin Plantinga and William Lane Craig equivocate on the meaning of "possible." In step 1 of the MOA, they want people to think something is "possible" if, "Duh, I dunno." But by step 2 of the MOA, "possible" doesn't mean that anymore. If something is possible in step two, it definitely exists in one or more possible worlds.
In step 1--if we're equivocating, if we're invalidating the MOA by changing the meaning of "possible" between step 1 and step2--the burden of proof to show that something isn't possible could be said to be on the person arguing against the MOA. But in step 2, the burden of proof is definitely on the proponent of the MOA.
In step 1: "Possible" means we don't know. (Burden on who denies possibility.)
In step 2: "Possible" means it definitely exists in a possible world. (Burden on who asserts possibility.)
Plantinga and Craig were tricksy in two ways. First, they encourage or allow people to read "possible" with two different meanings. Second, they don't define the MGB as necessary until step three. That is, only after they get people to agree that MGBs are "possible," do they say what the MGB is.
I thought this should be mentioned. So, in my opening remarks, I did mention it. But I was careful not to implicate FtK. Plantinga and Craig were deliberately tricky, but FtK is a different case.
And, while the MOA has lame versions (invalid because of changing definitions, and sly and deceptive because MGBs are defined after their possibility is acceded to), I wanted to use the principle of charity; I wanted to refute the strongest possible version of the MOA, not some lame version.
So FtK and I stipulated that he was not equivocating, and he wasn't trying to trick anybody by putting step 3 (definition of MGBs) after step 1 (possibility of MGBs).
I thought that would put these issues behind us, allow us to focus on the strongest version of the MOA.
FtK complained anyway. He said he is not equivocating. He said I spent too much space on Plantinga and Craig. He asked why I don't debate him instead of them.
And then he brought up an old thread. He bragged about how he got people to agree that gods are possible before they realized that he was talking about necessary gods. He implied that those people were disingenuous because they didn't think necessary gods were possible even after granting that some gods were possible.
In other words, he equivocated on the meaning of "possible," and he suckered people in by not defining MGBs until after they had agreed that MGBs might exist.
He brought this stuff up himself. He was tricksy and equivocal--and he's proud of it.
So I went back and had a look at how he justified step 1 in this debate.
His first point is that MGBs are possible because, Duh, we don't know. Let's see that in his own words:
That's his entire justification of step 1.
After that--as would be appropriate if he was equivocating and using the "Duh, we don't know" definition of "possible," he tries to shift the burden of proof to me:
In this attempt to shift the burden, he makes two points.
First, he says that I cannot prove an omnipresent god's nonexistence without searching the whole of the universe. Because, presumably, god could be anywhere, hidden.
That's an absurd argument, not appropriate to an omnipresent god. Omnipresent gods are everywhere. If you find any single place where they don't exist, then they don't exist at all.
Second, he asks me to do this:
I've done that. I do it frequently. Here it is again:
All worlds without logical contradiction are possible worlds.
Some godless worlds are without logical contradiction.
Therefore, some godless worlds are possible worlds.
Therefore, no god can exist in all possible worlds.
Since the MOA produces known-to-be-false conclusions, we know it is not sound. It "proves" that gods do not exist as easily as it proves they do exist. It is, therefore, worthless. It weighs nothing in the scales of persuasion.
Step 1 of the MOA is demonstrably false. As has been demonstrated repeatedly, it is not true that a necessary god exists in a possible world. If it did exist in one, it would have to exist in all of them, and that would be contradictory since some possible worlds are--as Plantinga admits and logic demands--godless.
For both of the above reasons, we know that the MOA is unsound. For the Kingdom undertook to prove that the MOA is sound. This debate is about whether the MOA is sound. The MOA is not sound.
Despite his affronted denials, FtK equivocated on the meaning of "possible." Since he uses "possible" to mean one thing in step 1 and another thing in step 2, it is clear that FtK's version of the MOA is not just unsound but also invalid.
At one point, I offered to debate other subjects with FtK after this debate ends.
Then FtK turned to insults. He accused me of being disingenuous. I asked him not to do that. His response (by PM) was that he has to do that or he'll be being disingenuous himself. Candor, apparently, consists of slinging insults.
Why did he think I was disingenuous?
Sincere statements are blank and empty; insincere statements have content?
FtK claims that his is the greatest god, and that anything imaginable exists in some possible world.
I pointed out that I can easily imagine better gods than his. He said that I should see a doctor. And anyone who agrees with me needs a doctor. Anyone, presumably, who thinks a god who can defeat iron chariots would be better than one who can't needs a doctor. Anyone who thinks an omnipresent god shouldn't need pillars of fire to get around needs a doctor. Anyone who thinks an omniscient god should be able to find the kids in the garden needs a doctor. Anyone who thinks a great god would be consistent about whether or not it can be seen needs a doctor.
Okay, I guess I overstated the case. I don't want to misrepresent. I personally don't need a doctor, but the rest of you are sickos.
Anyway, FtK and I don't play well together. I withdraw the offer to engage him future debates.
I've tried to focus on the main points this time. Last time I tried that, FtK (by PM) called it a slap in the face. He wanted me to address all of his points.
So I wrote for two more days, addressing issues that I considered anywhere from secondary to irrelevant.
I was trying to be accommodating.
FtK's reaction to that effort was to make fun of me:
So this time around I'm just hitting what seem to me the main points.
FtK, the ball is in your court.
Post 18: Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:56 pm
Like this post
I can only conclude, not having yet read anything beyond the above quote, that you are implying: "I can tell there is a logical problem with the MOA, even if I don't know what the problem is at this moment".
That may work in the land of auto-mechanics, but it won't fly in an intellectual debate.
Nope. Won't work. If I define myself as "necessary", does it "prove" that I exist necessarily? No. So obviously, it takes a lot more than just stapling labels to things.
It takes a lot more...umph.
If a NFST, mile-tall free-roaming elephant, or a necessary flying spaghetti monster...if ANY of those entities existed, those entities would be called "God". And of course it is possible for those entities to exist necessarily. Why? Because since it is possible for a MGB to exist, it is also possible for those entities to exist...because a MGB would have the power to manifest itself into any entity that it chooses...and if God so desired to manifest himself into the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or a NFST, he certainly has the power to do so.
As WLC pointed out in his debate with Lewis Wolpert...when an opponent of the MOA throws around these substitute entities in an attempt to replace the MGB as defined by the argument, all they are doing is defining God, but with a different label.
So, is the above implication of "See, a NFST can exist necessarily, too" the best refutation you've got of the MOA. It sounds like you are concluding that you don't know where the flaw lies with the argument.
That line of reasoning won't work for previously mentioned reasons.
Horrible to whom?
Yet, the universe began to exist. If Jenny (God) didn't create it, and it didn't create itself...but yet it began to exist, why did it come into being?
How do you know what Jenny did/didn't do?
So Jenny is this necessarily existing, dubiously aerodynamic reptile...and it didn't create or have a part in anything that began to exist....yet, things began to exist.
Makes no sense whatsoever.
No need to imagine, when I flat out explicitly stated or implied in every single thread/topic on the MOA that "just because something is defined as necessary doesn't mean it actually exists".
You really think that this "Jenny" business is a sufficient refutation of the MOA?? SMH.
Who told you that? Jenny?
Thanks for handing the debate to me.
I saw no good reasons (from you) as to why Step 1 is an obvious untruth.
I've already addressed this.
Look, I gave an in depth explanation as to why the KCA was brought forth, and how both arguments are supplementary. If my opponent has a problem with me using a supplementary argument to prove my MAIN argument, then he never should have proposed the idea that we debate the subject, considering the fact that I told him that I would be using the same argument with him that I had used with rikuo...and he agreed.
Now, he is acting as if he is blinded-sided by my supplementary argument. The fact of the matter is, again, the KCA supports the MOA in the sense that it proves that the universe is contingent, and MUST have an external, NECESSARY cause (with free will and astronomical power).
So therefore, a necessarily existing First Cause is necessary (for lack of a better term), which makes Step 1 of the MOA true, because its denial will give implications of something that we already KNOW to be false (the possibility of an eternally existing universe).
And that was the whole point. I tried to explain this to my opponent in just the debate in general, but my very first OP. And as far as I can remember, he has yet to address this at all.
My heart is wherever I can go to make my case stronger.
First off, no one is attempting to "support the soundness/validity of the MOA by showing that the KCA reaches the same conclusion".
The KCA was used to support a PREMISE (Step) of the argument. I could have swore that the point was to give supporting evidence to the premises, which is what I've done.
The point was simple; If Step 1 is false, then the universe is past-eternal...but the universe cannot be past eternal (insert KCA), therefore, Step 1 is true. Plain and simple.
You stated that the beef is with Step 1, well, I gave three justifications as to why Step 1 is true, with the supplementary KCA being only one of them. I've done my part to present and defend the MOA. Don't know what more you can ask for.
I already addressed this.
Again, it is quite disingenuous of wiploc to state that I "change the subject when I don't like the MOA's conclusion". I don't know how he can make that statement when I've spent my last 3 posts in this debate DIRECTLY responding to practically everything he stated.
And if I did "shift gears", it was only AFTER I responded to his quotes and then shifted gears to make another point (i.e. bringing forth the KCA). So it would seem as if my opponent isn't accurately describing what is going on and what has taken place.
What I believe wiploc is talking about here is what I'd like to call an "innocent, systematic approach" to the argument. You start the argument as if you are wet behind the ears, as in "we don't know, maybe a MGB could exist, maybe a MGB doesn't exist. We just..dont..know".
Innocent enough, right? But then you get in depth...you analyze, you critically think...you think about the concept, terms, implications, etc. THEN you go from "we dont know (possible)..."we DO know" (possible).
It is a systematic approach that my opponent calls equivocating, but then again, once the truth value of Step 1 is reached, then Step 2 just follows logically from Step 1...so I dispute his assessment of what is being done here, from how he is assessing the argument, and also his misplaced assessment of WLC and Plantiga's intentions.
SMH. This is just bad analyzing, in my opinion. Either Step 1 is true, or it is false. Bottom line. No one is equivocating anything. No one is conning anyone. The bottom line is; either Step 1 is true, or false...and there has been justifications that it is true.
"He got people to agree that gods are possible.." Doesn't that sound like I put people under hypnosis and "got them to agree that gods are possible? SMH.
Not at all. Those people spoke from the heart. Up until the MOA was created, everyone was fine and dandy with the mere possibility of God existing. They found out the implication, then changed their tune. That is what happened.
Nope. Not accurate.
Yet, MGB was defined in the preface of the OP..in the same way it was defined in the preface of the OP of this debate. SMH.
Consistent statements of inaccuracies and in some cases flat out falsehoods, yet complained when called "disingenuous".
So, 15 posts in, and "now" he goes back "and had a look at how I justified step 1". SMH.
Did I make false statement? No. Why? I will tell you why; because for all we know, a MGB could exist.
Not only did I make a true statement, but it is a true statement that any modest unbeliever would make (before they are presented with the MOA, of course).
Disingenuous. How can that one sentence that be my "entire justification" when there was two reasons (A and B) which preceded my whole "existence is necessary" spiel at the latter part of the post.
First he stated that that one sentence was my "only justification" I gave of Step 1, and then he precedes to talk in depth about the other "justifications" I gave for Step 1.
Cmon now. God could be invisible, yet present. Or, he could be invisible some places (still present) and visible other places (and still present).
You've never been behind the sun, so you don't know whether God is behind visibly present behind the sun.
Whats that? Oh, when he stated something along the lines of "worlds without gods are possible worlds"...which is like saying; "the number of elephants in the room is zero"...by zero, you don't mean that there are ACTUALLY elephants in the room that equal to a total number of 0.
It is absurd.
I'd like my opponent to describe to me the concept of a godless world, and to explain how an omnipresent being wouldn't exist in this world. And again, he fails to acknowledge the implication of a godless world. A godless world would imply an infinite, past-eternal universe, which is blatantly false.
Ok, the MOA is not sound. Then, a necessary being doesn't exist, therefore, the universe is eternal. Moving on..
But what...it is IMPOSSIBLE for the universe to be past-eternal...so the universe must be contingent, owing its existence to an external, necessarily existing timeless cause.
He can continue failing to address this all he wants...but it aint going anywhere.
I gave three reasons why God's existence is possible, though.
Isn't something missing here? So, he offered to "debate other subjects with me after this debates ends"...
Then I turned to insults? I missed the in between part. Am I the only one?
He said my response to him was "I have to do that or I'll be being disingenuous myself".
Yet, my response was actually..and I quote..
"I disagree with the notion of NOT accusing a person of being disingenuous if, in fact, you think that they are being disingenuous.
Hell, I get accused of being disingenuous from time to time. I just kindly explain to the accuser why their assessment is misplaced, and move on from there.
The fact of the matter is, people can be disingenuous. Now, if you feel as if my accusation was misplaced, then simply explain to me why it is misplaced..and I will simply say "Oh, my bad".
No one is perfect."
That is an EXACT quote, from me to him. Now, where did I say "I have to or I'll be disingenuous myself". Where? WHERE?
Easy. Simply read the quote that I was responding to at which I called you it.
Getting kind of emotional, here.
Not all, just the main ones...the ones that were conveniently ignored.
I actually gave reasons, on more than one occasion as to why those issues were/are quite relevant, but I haven't heard one reason as to why those issues were/are irrelevant. Not one (besides what he touched on briefly above).
I was too, by accepting this debate.
I forfeit this debate. Not wasting any more time. Too many falsehoods, inaccuracies, and refusals to address points. You can have the last word, sir.
Post 19: Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:20 am
Like this post (1): rikuoamero
No, of course not.
Right. And yet the only reason we are given to think that the MGB is necessary is that is labeled that way.
As far as the MOA is concerned, that label is all we have. Therefore, if the MOA were to be considered authoritative about the MGB, it should also be considered authoritative about necessary flying sea turtles.
I don't know why you say that. They don't have any qualities that I associate with gods. This is a claim that would need support.
If I understand your claim that necessary things have to exist all the time--and I don't endorse that claim--then it follows that your god has to be Jenny all the time in every possible world. And also has to be a necessary unicorn all the time in every possible world. And has to be every other necessary thing in every possible world.
I can't imagine that. I don't think you can imagine it.
I believe you're on record as saying that 2+2=4 is true in every possible world. You seem to be claiming now that god is every necessary thing, so it would follow that god is 2+2=4.
2+2=4 is simply not what we mean by the word "god." So it is not true that every necessary thing must be god.
That's arbitrary nonsense.
To Jenny. She's an innocent. She would never torture anybody forever.
I made her up myself. The same way theists make up gods. I define Jenny as necessary in the same way that you define your MGB as necessary. I describe her as innocent in the same way that Abrahamic theists describe their god as genocidal.
Right. So what good is the MOA? Why do you think it proves the MGB exists if you don't think it proves Jenny exists?
I'm sorry if I gave that impression. I'd like to debate the KCA, just not in a debate on the MOA.
First, I don't see it as relevant. If I managed to convince you that a particular reptile existed in every possible world, would that convince you that the MOA works? No, to prove that the MOA is a good argument, we have to look at the MOA itself.
Second, I don't think you did actually present the KOA as a coherent argument. You alluded to it many times, but didn't explain why you thought it worked. You didn't give me enough information to formulate a refutation.
I could have asked you to explain why you think things that begin have to be caused, why necessary things don't have to be caused, etcetera, but--again--that would have distracted us from the Mustang--I mean, from the MOA.
I'd be entirely with you on this if I thought the KCA actually made your case stronger.
See, I don't get that.
And I don't get that.
This stuff would be worthy of its own debate.
I don't see the relationship. What does the KCA have to do with your MGB?
I'm not looking for an answer; I'm happy to call this debate over. I'm just expressing bafflement.
The frustration is mutual.
P1: We don't know.
C: We do know.
I don't get it.
See, this is relevant. I had two main arguments, and this addresses one of them. I can only wish that you had put as much effort into this as you did into the KCA.
Well, then, I recant. It certainly struck me that way, but I'll take your word for it that I was wrong.
Before they are clear on the concept of the MGB existing in every possible world if it exists in any.
You wrote, "Justification for P1: In other words, for all we know, a MGB could exist." That was your entire defense of step 1.
You then made two attempts, A and B, to shift the burden of proof to me. A and B were your ideas of how I might go about proving step 1 to be false, but they were not a defense of step 1.
That's hardly the issue. If a god is defined as omnipresent (visibility has nothing to do with this) but is shown not to be present in any one location, then that omnipresent god does not exist.
Any world with no gods.
Well, if your being is a god, then it would contradict logic for it to be in a godless world. That couldn't happen.
When you call it "omnipresent," that doesn't define it into existence. It just means that if it exists then it exists everywhere in the actual world (and, in your opinion, I believe, everywhere in every possible world).
So if there's any location where it doesn't exist, then it follows that it doesn't exist at all.
You keep alluding to the KCA, but you don't explain it. I don't know why you think godless worlds are infinite and past-eternal, and I don't know why you think infinite past-eternal worlds are false.
In all the myriad myriad possible worlds, I assume there are past-eternal worlds and also uncaused past-finite worlds.
That's just an assumption; I haven't thought it thru.
Please don't pull an MOA on me and say, "He doesn't know, so I get to decide."
That doesn't follow. In fact, it's not just a non-sequitur, it is wrong.
Anything that does be is a "being," right?
That includes the universe (the alliverse, everything that exists).
You can't have a universe without a universe, a world without a world; that would be contradiction.
So the world exists in every possible world.
Therefore, the world is a necessary being.
Therefore, a necessary being exists regardless of whether the MOA is sound.
Again, I don't see how that follows, or what it has to do with the MOA.
So far, this claim seems to me (a) unsupported, and (b) not relevant.
Well, I apologize again.
I thought that was a fair restatement of what you said. I was working from memory, but now that you have reproduced the original text, my succinct rephrasing still seems accurate.
I regret that you feel I misrepresented you. I assure you that any misrepresentation was unintentional.
No need to call it forfeited. You presented your case, and I presented mine.
I did enjoy this, and I feel that I made progress, expressed my ideas better than in the past. I hope you don't feel it was a waste of time.
I thank you for engaging in this with me. And I thank Debating Christianity and Religion, and the moderators and spectators.