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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 1: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:07 am
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Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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Hi everybody

I thought it would make a good opportunity to discuss loosely the arguments pro and con the existence of God and perhaps add some links to Youtube and other places.

So let's start, I'll be the pro God's existence.

William Lane Craig vs. Sam Harris

YouTube

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William Lane Craig vs. Lawrence Krauss

YouTube

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William Lane Craig vs. Lawrence Krauss

YouTube

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One big bag of arguments: St. Aquinas' "Five Ways".
And all other such. I'm not sure Monades need to enter the discussion.

Are you good? Anybody? We can be 2 Christians too, by all means, in "cameraderie", going through the arguments against us.

Study Very Happy Cool

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 2: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:21 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

Aquinas' Five Ways by Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Ways_(Aquinas):
"The Quinque viƦ (Latin "Five Ways") (sometimes called "five proofs") are five logical arguments regarding the existence of God summarized by the 13th-century Catholic philosopher and theologian St. Thomas Aquinas in his book Summa Theologica. They are:
1. the argument from "first mover";
2. the argument from causation;
3. the argument from contingency;
4. the argument from degree;
5. the argument from final cause or ends ("teleological argument").

"The Five Ways"

"Prima Via: The Argument of the Unmoved Mover
Summary
In the world, we can see that at least some things are changing. Whatever is changing is being changed by something else. If that by which it is changing is itself changed, then it too is being changed by something else. But this chain cannot be infinitely long, so there must be something that causes change without itself changing. This everyone understands to be God.[7][13]

Explanation
Aquinas uses the term "motion" in his argument, but by this he understands any kind of "change", more specifically a transit from potentiality to actuality.[14] (For example, a puddle growing to be larger would be counted inside the boundaries of Aquinas' usage.) Since a potential does not yet exist, it cannot cause itself to exist and can therefore only be brought into existence by something already existing.[1]

Secunda Via: The Argument of the First Cause
Summary
In the world, we can see that things are caused. But it is not possible for something to be the cause of itself because this would entail that it exists prior to itself, which is a contradiction. If that by which it is caused is itself caused, then it too must have a cause. But this cannot be an infinitely long chain, so, there must be a cause which is not itself caused by anything further. This everyone understands to be God.[13]

Explanation
As in the First Way, the causes Aquinas has in mind are not sequential events, but rather simultaneously existing dependency relationships: Aristotle's efficient cause. For example, plant growth depends on sunlight, which depends on gravity, which depends on mass.[8] Aquinas is not arguing for a cause that is first in a sequence, but rather first in a hierarchy: a principal cause, rather than a derivative cause.[15]

Tertia Via: The Argument from Contingency
Summary
In the world we see things that are possible to be and possible not to be. In other words, perishable things. But if everything were contingent and thus capable of going out of existence, then, nothing would exist now. But things clearly do exist now. Therefore, there must be something that is imperishable: a necessary being. This everyone understands to be God.[7][13]

Explanation
The argument begins with the observation that things around us come into and go out of existence: animals die, buildings are destroyed, etc. But if everything were like this, then, at some time nothing would exist. Some interpreters read Aquinas to mean that assuming an infinite past, all possibilities would be realized and everything would go out of existence. Since this is clearly not the case, then there must be at least one thing that does not have the possibility of going out of existence.[13] However, this explanation seems to involve the fallacy of composition (quantifier shift). Moreover, it does not seem to be in keeping with Aquinas' principle that, among natural things, the destruction of one thing is always the generation of another.[16] Alternatively, one could read Aquinas to be arguing as follows: if there is eternal change, so that things are eternally being generated and corrupted, and since an eternal effect requires an eternal cause (just as a necessary conclusion requires necessary premises), then there must exist an eternal agent which can account for the eternity of generation and corruption. To hold the alternative, namely that an infinite series of contingent causes would be able to explain eternal generation and corruption would posit a circular argument: Why is there eternal generation and corruption? Because there is an eternal series of causes which are being generated and corrupted. And why is there an infinite series of causes which are being generated and corrupted? Because there is eternal generation and corruption. Since such an explanation is not acceptable, there must be (at least one) eternal and necessary being.

Quarta Via: The Argument from Degree
Summary
We see things in the world that vary in degrees of goodness, truth, nobility, etc. For example, well-drawn circles are better than poorly drawn ones, healthy animals are better than sick animals. Moreover, some substances are better than others, since living things are better than non-living things, and animals are better than plants, in testimony of which no one would choose to lose their senses for the sake of having the longevity of a tree. But judging something as being "more" or "less" implies some standard against which it is being judged. For example, in a room full of people of varying heights, at least one must be tallest. Therefore, there is something which is best and most true, and most a being, etc. Aquinas then adds the premise: what is most in a genus is the cause of all else in that genus. From this he deduces that there exists some most-good being which causes goodness in all else, and this everyone understands to be God.[13]

Explanation
The argument is rooted in Aristotle and Plato but its developed form is found in Anselm's Monologion.[17][18] Although the argument has Platonic influences, Aquinas was not a Platonist and did not believe in the Theory of Forms. Rather, he is arguing that things that only have partial or flawed existence indicate that they are not their own sources of existence, and so must rely on something else as the source of their existence.[19] The argument makes use of the theory of transcendentals: properties of existence. For example, "true" presents an aspect of existence, as any existent thing will be "true" insofar as it is true that it exists. Or "one," insofar as any existent thing will be (at least) "one thing."[20] The premise which seems to cause the most difficulty among interpreters of the fourth way is that the greatest in a genus is the cause of all else in the genus. This premise does not seem to be universally true, and indeed, Aquinas himself thinks that this premise is not always true, but only under certain circumstances[21]: namely, when 1) the lesser things in the genus need a cause, and 2) there is nothing outside the genus which can be the cause. When these two conditions are met, the premise that the greatest in the genus is the cause of all else in that genus holds, since nothing gives what it does not have. Since Aquinas is dealing specifically with transcendentals like being and goodness, and since there is nothing outside the transcendentals, it follows that there is nothing outside the genus which could be a cause (condition 2). Moreover, if something has less than the maximum being or goodness or truth, then it must not have being or goodness or truth in itself. For example, how could what has circularity itself be less than fully circular? Therefore, whatever has less than the maximum being or goodness or truth must need a cause of their being and goodness and truth (condition 1).

Quinta Via: Argument from Final Cause or Ends
Summary
We see various non-intelligent objects in the world behaving in regular ways. This cannot be due to chance since then they would not behave with predictable results. So their behavior must be set. But it cannot be set by themselves since they are non-intelligent and have no notion of how to set behavior. Therefore, their behavior must be set by something else, and by implication something that must be intelligent. This everyone understands to be God.[13]

Explanation
This is also known as the Teleological Argument. However, it is not a "Cosmic Watchmaker" argument from design (see below). Instead, as the 1920 Dominican translation puts it, The fifth way is taken from the governance of the world[2].

The Fifth Way uses Aristotle's final cause. Aristotle argued that a complete explanation of an object will involve knowledge of how it came to be (efficient cause), what material it consists of (material cause), how that material is structured (formal cause), and the specific behaviors associated with the type of thing it is (final cause).[22] The concept of final causes involves the concept of dispositions or "ends": a specific goal or aim towards which something strives. For example, acorns regularly develop into oak trees but never into sea lions. The oak tree is the "end" towards which the acorn "points," its disposition, even if it fails to achieve maturity. The aims and goals of intelligent beings is easily explained by the fact that they consciously set those goals for themselves. The implication is that if something has a goal or end towards which it strives, it is either because it is intelligent or because something intelligent is guiding it.[23]

It must be emphasized that this argument is distinct from the design argument associated with William Paley and the Intelligent Design movement. The latter implicitly argue that objects in the world do not have inherent dispositions or ends, but, like Paley's watch, will not naturally have a purpose unless forced to do some outside agency.[23] The latter also focus on complexity and interworking parts as the effect needing explanation, whereas the Fifth Way takes as its starting point any regularity.[23] (E.g., that an eye has a complicated function therefore a design therefore a designer) but an argument from final cause (e.g., that the pattern that things exist with a purpose itself allows us to recursively arrive at God as the ultimate source of purpose without being constrained by any external purpose)."

- Again, from the Wikipedia article, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Ways_(Aquinas).

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 3: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:33 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

Fine Tuning Argument (William Lane Craig)

The Fine Tuning of the Universe of such complex magnitude points to an Intelligent Designer.

"God Is the Best Explanation of the Fine-Tuning of the Universe for Intelligent Life":

YouTube


Paraphrasing:
"Complex and delicate balance given in the moment of Big Bang (or so)!"

Stanford, SEP, "Fine-Tuning":
https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/fine-tuning/

So how much details into the argument?

Study Very Happy Cool

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 4: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:38 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

Kalam cosmological argument

"Form of the argument
The most prominent form of the argument, as defended by William Lane Craig, states the Kalam cosmological argument as the following brief syllogism:[5]

Whatever begins to exist has a cause;
The universe began to exist;
Therefore:
The universe has a cause.
Given the conclusion, Craig appends a further premise and conclusion based upon a conceptual analysis of the properties of the cause:[6]

The universe has a cause;
If the universe has a cause, then an uncaused, personal Creator of the universe exists who sans (without) the universe is beginningless, changeless, immaterial, timeless, spaceless and enormously powerful;
Therefore,
An uncaused, personal Creator of the universe exists, who sans the universe is beginningless, changeless, immaterial, timeless, spaceless and infinitely powerful.
Referring to the implications of Classical Theism that follow from this argument, Craig writes:

"... transcending the entire universe there exists a cause which brought the universe into being ex nihilo ... our whole universe was caused to exist by something beyond it and greater than it. For it is no secret that one of the most important conceptions of what theists mean by 'God' is Creator of heaven and earth."[7]"

Source, Wikipedia, "Kalam cosmological argument": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalam_cosmological_argument#Form_of_the_argument

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 5: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:51 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

(5.) Personal Experience of God
- To have the experience of a world under God is to feel that God exists!
Personal testimony for the existence of God
I can add all the billions of people who are also believers in God this way. (JCI, Buddhism, Shintoism, Hinduism, Sikhism... all.)

God Can Be Personally Known and Experienced, Dr. Lane Craig:

YouTube


Argument nr. 2 is the Fine Tuning Argument.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 6: Fri Apr 03, 2020 3:55 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

(4.) God Is the Best Explanation of the Historical Facts Concerning Jesus of Nazareth

The YouTube video, drcraigvideos,
YouTube

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 7: Fri Apr 03, 2020 4:04 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

(3.) God Is the Best Explanation of the Existence of Objective Moral Values and Duties

Youtube, drcraigvideos:
YouTube


Loosely, Modus Tollens by double negation:
If God does not exist then objective moral values and duties do not exist either
Objective moral values and duties do exist
Therefore, God does exist (necessarily)

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 8: Fri Apr 03, 2020 4:09 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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(1.) God Is the Best Explanation of the Origin of the Universe

The video by drcraigvideos:

YouTube


Loosely,
it's more rational to say God brought the Universe into existence than nothing (or next to nothing) that "modern day physics" says!

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 9: Fri Apr 03, 2020 10:01 am
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 1 by Aetixintro]

I'm game to discuss this.

But you have to pick one argument to address at a time. Which one do you think is strongest? Which one would give you pause to see refuted? Which one is your own faith based on?

And you have to post the argument rather than a video of the argument. There was a time when I was willing to spend hours refuting videos, but I was quickly cured of that. "That's not my argument," people would say. "Why did you fasten on that part of the video? I was only interested in this other little bit that you didn't address at all."

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 10: Fri Apr 03, 2020 1:31 pm
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Re: Pros and Cons for God's Existence

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[Replying to post 9 by wiploc]

Cool. Let it be us, but give me more time first. I'm not ready just yet.

Now, I'm most in favor of St. Aquinas' "Five Ways". Can we do these?

All in all, there are many aspects in terms of maturity that make up my foundation for faith, the Christian one, and the Scientologist, "and the non-practicing others", Islam, Kabbalah, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, etc.

So we agree now and then we discuss later. Good?

Study Very Happy Cool

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