The Creation of God

Introduction

Recently a wave of comments inundated several of my hubs from a hubber called Joseph O Polanco. Many of the arguments made in his posts draw substance from philosopher and theologian Doctor William Lane Craig. I don't at all condemn such borrowing as I myself have borrowed from other atheists and indeed MUST borrow from believers in the sense that in order to critique religions I must understand the beliefs and the arguments used to support those beliefs.

Joe's comments have caused a bit of a renewed spark for me in the whole atheism theism debate and I've watched several of Doctor William Lane Craigs recent exchanges in order to better understand what I take Joe's positions to be. In this hub I'm going to address the Kalam Cosmological argument and the generally accepted nature of the modern monotheistic 'Abrahamic' God and how neither are reasonable to accept or believe.

So this hub will be a bit of a hodge podge with an overarching theme.

The Kalam Cosmological Argument, conclusion, that cause is God
The Kalam Cosmological Argument, conclusion, that cause is God
a different version of the cosmological argument
a different version of the cosmological argument

Kalam Reloaded

Most of this hub will deal with the Kalam Cosmological argument, which is among William Lane Craig's favorite arguments for God to use. The argument asserts that all things that begin to exist have a cause and that because the Universe has a beginning, the Big Bang, that the Universe has an 'external' or transcendent cause that we call God. Most debaters do not take issue with the first premise, which is that everything which begins to exist has a cause but both the first and second premise are problematic when we begin talking about Cosmology and the type of creation or beginning being discussed.

You don't need a PhD to object to the first premise, all you need is an understanding of what Craig is actually saying. There is a hidden premise within the first premise that is seldom mentioned, which is the idea that the Universe came into existence out of nothing, or was created out of nothing. This idea is not founded on Cosmology but rather upon the philosophical presupposition that nothing ought to exist or that the fact that there is SOMETHING rather than NOTHING is somehow strange and demands an explanation.

It may seem obvious to the average person that the presence of something rather than nothing suggests that at some point in the past there was nothing and apologists are content to assume that the Big Bang asserts just this. Among scientists there are those who assert that, in fact, a Universe could arise from nothing via natural processes and still other scientists suggest that SOMETHING always existed, even “before” our Universe. The first premise of Craig's argument is dubious at best as a philosophical point and completely misrepresents the debate going on in modern Cosmology about the subject of cosmic origins.

Furthermore Craig's belief in creation out of nothing compounds the problem of establishing his first cause for Kalam because we have no confirmed examples of causality in regards to that type of creation. In simple terms we've never seen anything come into existence out of nothing and we have no idea if creating something out of nothing requires a CAUSE in the same way that normal cause and effect work. If the Universe was coming out of nothing we simply do not know that something causally prior to the Universe is necessary, let alone that it is a God.

An excellent deconstruction of Kalam's many flaws

The Meaning of Life

If we grant the first premise of Kalam we get to the second premise, which I am more than glad to grant for now, and that is typically stated as The Universe began to exist (although again Craig means created from nothing, rather than something pre-existing). The conclusion is where Craig once again gets into trouble. Craig comes to the conclusion that the First Cause is NOT simply an inanimate force beyond time and space but that the first cause is a timeless, spaceless, immaterial disembodied mind we call God. The problem with this is that even if we grant the assertion that a timeless, spaceless, immaterial thing can exist how can it possibly be a living mind?

As I partially explained to Joe we have numerous definitions of what it means for something to be alive, to be a living being or living organism. The definition that William Lane Craig seems to be suggesting is either based on some twisted form of vitalism (the idea that all life is different from the inanimate because it has an immaterial essence) or more likely upon the idea that all human beings have a soul, an immaterial immortal soul given to them by God. Either way Craig is engaging in special pleading, asking that God be exempt from the rules for no good reason.

So what does it mean when something is alive? What is life? Well in simplest terms life is a complex and unique form of organic chemistry. Things that are alive, or possess life, are capable of growth, reproduction, and carry on metabolic or chemical processes that are distinguishable from chemical processes carried on by non-living material. The definition of life as we understand precludes Craig's God and any attempts to amend the definition of life to include this timeless spaceless first cause either employ special pleading or invoke outdated definitions or unproven ideas (vitalism, the existence of a soul, etc).

I Got Soul and I'm Super Bad

In order to assume this God CAN exist in such a state Craig must already have the presupposition that such things are possible without a reason to back it up. In particular Craig has to believe that something which is immaterial can have the quality of life. The only argument I can think of that he can give for why we should somehow change our definition of what it means to be alive is to make an appeal to the human soul.

The idea that human beings have a soul cannot be used as evidence that something immaterial can be ALIVE outside time and space for several reasons. First of all the general belief is that only human beings have a soul, so having a soul cannot be said to be part of what it means to be alive, it would merely be a part of what it means to be human. Secondly William Lane Craig is not the type of theologian to deny the truth of evolutionary science, he is NOT a creationist in that sense and so he does, as far as I know, agree that human beings share a common ancestor with modern extant apes. So at what point, then, does the soul enter the world?

The Bible says that God breathed the breath of life into Adam often this is interpreted as God giving man an immortal soul and to those who take that metaphoric approach it is the moment that God turned man from a mere ape into a man. But at what point in the evolutionary timeframe was that? Was it a hundred thousand years ago? One million? Was it when the Neanderthals died out leaving homo sapiens the dominant hominid? When did human beings acquire this immaterial thing that makes us so special and why has it thus far proved entirely undetectable and completely inconsequential?

Deity Self-Destruction

Emmet has seen the "man upstairs"
Emmet has seen the "man upstairs" | Source

When faced with my claim that it is nonsensical to suggest something can be alive and also be immaterial, timeless and spaceless Joe accused me of the appeal to incredulity fallacy because I couldn't 'imagine' it and thus dismissed it. I can imagine it just fine however the idea directly contradicts our understanding of what it means for something to be alive. I am perfectly open to amending my understanding of what it means for something to be alive but I need a REASON to do so other than my own imagination. Being able to imagine something doesn't make it a reasonable proposition to accept.

I elaborate upon why an immaterial, spaceless, timeless LIVING God makes no sense, and also attempt to dismantle God's attributes such as omnipotence and omniscience in my hub Deconstructing God's Characteristics but I want to go one step further here and I understand this hub is running long so I'll try to make this segment quick.

If God is omnipotent within material reality, that is he can manipulate matter, space and time, how does it make any sense to say that he is immaterial? In what way can the immaterial affect the material? Even if we assume that God can cause the Universe to come into existence any further action by God to interfere within the Universe raises the question of how he can even act upon matter without material POWER, that is power in the physical sense.

In physics power is the ability to do work over time so it also makes no sense for God to be timeless and omnipotent as any action God could undertake would inherently require time to pass. Furthermore God cannot be omniscient without time and space, time is required for thought processes to occur and there would have to be a Universe to know about for God to meaningfully know anything. Along those same lines without space what does it mean for God to be omnipresent? It means nothing.

William Lane Craig does his bad philosophy in the name of Christianity
William Lane Craig does his bad philosophy in the name of Christianity

Thought processes, as far as we know, are purely a biological thing - a disembodied mind itself makes little sense and those who argue for God give very little reason why we should accept such a thing let alone give our praise to it and feel bad when we offend it.

Craig's God is therefore a massive self-contradiction as all of his meaningful characteristics are contingent upon the existence of a Universe, specifically a Universe like ours where time, space and matter all exist. And, if you take Craig's moral argument for the existence of God, than God's characteristic of omnibenevolence is contingent upon the existence of moral agents like ourselves. That is to say that if there was no Universe and simply was God, there would simply be a spaceless, timeless, immaterial disembodied mind and such a thing, absent a Universe like our own, COULD NOT be all-knowing, all loving, all powerful and present everywhere.

Who made whom? Did God make man or did man make God?
Who made whom? Did God make man or did man make God?

The Teleological Argument OF God

The modern monotheistic God is a chameleon-like mess of convenient plot-hole filler and special pleading so that he can break all the rules just because. Isn't it convenient that such a being explains away all the mysteries we've yet to nail down? What are the odds that a God powerful enough to create the Universe happened to exist? What are the odds that a God moral enough to govern human behavior also happens to know everything we do and think? Wow, what a convenient deity, its almost as if, to steal a line from the believers, God is FINE TUNED. If we tweaked the parameters of this God even a tiny bit why we'd get a totally different result!

Who could have Fine Tuned God in such a way that he fits all these characteristics we need him to? Like fitting neatly into mysteries we want answers to like the origin of the Universe and where consciousness comes from! It's funny because this same God once fit into all the mysteries we do know the answer to now but used to wonder about, like what causes diseases, why crops were bad, why an invading army was allowed to overcome us, death, where all the animals and plants came from, how the planets and stars seem to move, etc... etc... etc...

Who fine tuned God? We did. But now we don't need to defend this indefensible nonsense, we've moved beyond the concept of God. It's not that there are no gods anywhere at all, there might be, we don't know for sure - we need to keep an open-mind. But I think we can say that we understand the creation of the modern monotheistic God, we understand his origins, we understand his past and current evolution and in a lot of ways we've moved beyond the usefulness of the concept of a GOD altogether.

Conclusion

And, as I said in a previous hub, if there was a God that gave a shit about our freedom and autonomy as a species, maybe that freedom would be his greatest gift of all. Maybe the sheep becoming their own shepherds was all part of the plan. If there is a God why must we be so dependent and drag God down to our level, perhaps if there is a creator his plan would involve weaning us away so that he can enjoy his creation.

In conclusion I submit that: -

The modern God defined by monotheists (Christian, Muslim, Jew) is self-contradictory, nonsensical and does not exist.

Whether some kind of God exists or not the anthropocentric, anthropomorphic and primitive gods of our intellectual infancy as a species should be abandoned and we should take control of our own destiny as a species.


Thank you for reading and I look forward to what happens in the comments!

More by this Author


Comments 22 comments

Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 24 months ago from Michigan, USA

An interesting and thought-provoking hub, Titen.

I'm glad to see you've addressed what is far too often the "elephant in the room" in debates over God's existence -- something that is often overlooked even by atheists:

...that, even if we accept -- purely for the sake of debate -- the cosmological argument as evidence for some "uncaused" first cause, it STILL only takes us half-way to that "uncaused" first cause actually being God (let alone whatever particular god the apologist is proposing).

Demonstrating that God (especially YOUR particular God) is that "first" cause requires additional, separate evidence or compelling arguments. And that is a yawning chasm that no apologist has even come CLOSE to bridging.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 24 months ago from back in the lab again Author

Thanks Paladin,

There is no reason to posit that this first cause is actually a living God, at least not a compelling one.

What about a dead God? How about a being from an immaterial Universe that, like a dying star giving birth to the planets, uses its last moments to weave a physical Universe such as our own. While I do not believe in such a God I find it far more plausible (not to mention poetic) than Craig's finely tuned version and while my dead natural "god" does require dualism the notion does not necessarily require the supernatural.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 24 months ago from Somewhere in the universe

How would one expect mankind to take control of his own destiny? We can't even agree on whether there is a God or not, much less on what this magical being wants.

The very notion that "something" existed before "everything" existed is absurd. But maybe my brain is just too puny to figure that one out.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 24 months ago from back in the lab again Author

Even the best scientists in the world haven't figured out the origins of the Universe yet. I think the real ridiculous thing is that those making these arguments go through all these mental gymnastics to establish there creator and then they just pick the ancient God of the Bible anyway. How they get from a simple first cause to a God that cares whether you work on Saturdays or eat pork is beyond me.

As for getting our collective sh*t together as a species, call it wishful thinking but I'd like to think we'll get off this planet and explore the stars someday. Of course it will never happen until we educate people and get them passed the hang-ups that religion and politics have programmed them with.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 24 months ago from Somewhere in the universe

Well, maybe reincarnation is real and we will be born as astronauts someday. It's just as reasonable as a God that wants to cut off the foreskins of baby boys, right?


Joseph O Polanco profile image

Joseph O Polanco 19 months ago

@Paladin

"Demonstrating that God [] is that "first" cause requires additional, separate evidence or compelling arguments."

Indirect evidence is frequently and reliably depended upon to ascertain the reality of the world we live in . As a case in point , it's long been widely-used to show that our Sun generates power via nuclear fusion , hydrogen is present on it or that the our planet features an iron core . In like manner, the fact that there are dozens upon dozens of fulfilled Bible prophecies constitutes irrefutable evidence for the existence of it's author, Jehovah God.

This is, by far the most persuasive logical reason why millions upon millions of rational people today the world over accept the Bible as the Inspired Word of Jehovah God. Simply no other book – religious or not – comes with such illustrious prominence. Considering the fact that it's literally ** impossible ** for any person to foresee with complete precision what's sure to occur from one hour to the next, there's no two ways about it: Bible prophecies are not of natural origin. I kindly invite you to examine for yourself numerous examples of these accurately fulfilled prophecies: http://bit.ly/1d0Y82v


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 19 months ago from Michigan, USA

Joseph, we've been down this road before. I've visited that website and have addressed each of those supposed "prophesies" in detail. In fact, we literally spent weeks discussing them, in my hub, "God Is Dead...And I Killed Him:"

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/God-Is-Dea...

As I recall, your "accurately fulfilled prophecies" primarily consisted four predictions:

-- That Edom would become "desolate for all time" (It isn't. The kingdom, as is the case with most ancient kingdoms, has passed, but the land is NOT desolate, and some of the cities still stand).

-- That the Medes would destroy Babylon (They didn't. Babylon existed as a city for centuries afterward, gradually fading into disuse and abandonment).

-- That Daniel prophesized the coming of Alexander the Great (which I pointed out to you was probably written AFTER the appearance of Alexander).

-- That Alexander would destroy Tyre, and in a very specific way (Tyre was NEVER destroyed, at least not by any invader, including Alexander. It still exists, as the modern city of Sour in Lebanon, and the details you cited do not fit the particulars of the "prophecy," as I also pointed out to you).

These four "numerous" prophecies are hardly compelling proof for the divinity of the Bible. But your mentioning of them, AGAIN, leads me to a question about which I've long been wondering:

Joseph, do you ever LISTEN to anything people tell you, even when they contradict your arguments with irrefutable facts? Or do you just engage them long enough to try to disprove or discredit what THEY say?

From personal experience, it seems to me that one can spend weeks dismantling your arguments, and yet months later you repost them as if nothing ever happened. To me, that seems incredibly dishonest.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 19 months ago from Somewhere in the universe

Well, Paladin, it seems he has nothing better to do than go around and copy/paste his delusions on several people's hubs and questions. Over and over again. I'm suspecting a severe case of OCD.


Joseph O Polanco profile image

Joseph O Polanco 19 months ago

@Paladin

I could ask you the very same things because I proved that:

-Edom remains an uninhabited desert exactly as prophesied. (Jer 49:7-22; cf. Isa 34:9-15.)

-Babylon too is still an uninhabited desert exactly as prophesied. (Isaiah 13:19, 20.)

-Alexander was shown the prophecies in Daniel regarding him and Greece. (Jewish Antiquities, XI, 337 [viii, 5])

-Mainland Tyre fell before Nebuchadnezzar II and Island Tyre was razed by Alexander the Great exactly as prophesied. (Eze 26:7-12; Zec 9:3, 4; Eze 26:4, 12.)


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 19 months ago from Michigan, USA

Joseph, I'm NOT going to go over all this AGAIN with you. I already completely explained to you (in my other hub) why your so-called 'prophecies' don't hold water -- and exactly why the explanations you just offered (the same rationalizations you tried in my hub) are untrue and incorrect.

Joseph, a person who is genuinely concerned with the truth will, when confronted with factual contradictions of his or her arguments, reconsider those arguments and either change his or her mind or -- at the very least -- go back and modify those arguments to reflect the new information.

In the months I've been debating you over your various claims, you've done NEITHER. Ever. And you continue to repeat them even though you now KNOW they are untrue or incorrect.

I am now completely convinced that you have absolutely NO interest in engaging honestly with anyone here on HubPages. I have literally exchanged THOUSANDS of words with you over the last year or so on various topics, and will waste no more time doing so.

If you offer any additional comments on any of my hubs, they will be immediately deleted (I didn't say "new" because almost NOTHING you ever post is "new"). I encourage anyone else who cares about honest and open discussions (and doesn't enjoy talking to walls) here on HubPages to do the same.

So sad...


Joseph O Polanco profile image

Joseph O Polanco 19 months ago

@Paladin

“Unbelief is as much of a choice as belief is. What makes it in many ways more appealing is that whereas to believe in something requires some measure of understanding and effort, not to believe doesn't require much of anything at all.”

― Frederick Buechner

So sad that you would continue to disbelieve despite all of the evidence you were confronted with.


Akriti Mattu profile image

Akriti Mattu 18 months ago from Shimla, India

Fascinating piece.


Himangsu Sekhar Pal 14 months ago

In almost every religion that believes in some kind of God, he has been described as spaceless and timeless. Although there are lots of basic differences between different religions, yet in almost every one of them, either eastern or western, these two attributes have been commonly assigned to God. So if we now say that God does not exist, then we are also saying that there is no one in this universe about whom it can be said that he is spaceless and timeless. So by denying the existence of God we are also denying the existence of any permanent state of timelessness in this universe, because this God is not only spaceless and timeless, he is also eternal, everlasting. But science has also shown as to how a state of timelessness can be reached, because from special theory of relativity we come to know that at the speed of light time totally stops. If there is no state of timelessness in the universe, then why was it necessary for science to show as to how that state could be reached? Is it not self-contradictory on the part of science?


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 10 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Titen

I just got to this hub and enjoyed reading it. I've come across the idea of science and physics having a different understanding of 'Nothing' in that Lawrence Kraus said it was more like the component parts of the atoms before they came together.

It's interesting the way you define 'life' as that would be the materialistic way of understanding life, but as yet we don't really know how life started so can we really define it?

Just a thought.

Lawrence


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 10 months ago from back in the lab again Author

All life that we know of and have ever observed has been made up of physical matter and has the characteristics of that definition (ability to grow, reproduce, etc). Of course there could be some kind of non-physical life but we would need two things to be proven before accepting such a thing existed.

1) Proof that there is some non-physical substance or stuff (in other words proof of dualism)

2) Proof that processes which constitute life can be sustained in something made of a non-physical substance

If both of these were satisfied we might be able to expand the definition of life to include something supernatural or non-physical .

We don't know how life started but we do know that life is made up, at it's base, of self-replicating molecules like DNA (other self-replicating molecules could exist or have evolved on other planets). As far as we know there is no supernatural or non-physical aspect to life as no observations or experiments have ever confirmed such a thing.

Here's an interesting video of dualism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RS4PW35-Y00


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 10 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Titen

I agree with you on the two 'proofs' that would categorically answer the question and personally I think it might be a while before we have any answers.

As for all life being made up of self replicating molecules we still think we're missing something in that we can assemble those molecules yet still not have 'life'.

Neuroscience is researching the idea that our minds exist outside the chemicals that make up our brain! That human consciousness is seperate to our physical being and our brains are simply chemical conduits for consciousness that monitor the physical unit our soul resides in.

I've no idea how far they've got but it opens up all kinds of possibilities!

Lawrence


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 10 months ago from back in the lab again Author

"As for all life being made up of self replicating molecules we still think we're missing something in that we can assemble those molecules yet still not have 'life'."

I don't know what you mean. All of the pieces are self-assembling. When a human egg is fertilized it triggers a series of natural chemical processes that, if they go off without a hitch, result in a new human being. Maybe you are referring to stitching together some kind of Frankenstein lifeform, I honestly don't know.

All I'm saying is that life, at its root, is genes trying to replicate themselves. I think you are saying that we are MORE than the sum of our parts because there is a non-physical aspect to life. I don't think such the non-physical, spiritual, whatever you want to call it, has been adequately defined or codified into a coherent concept even.

"Neuroscience is researching the idea that our minds exist outside the chemicals that make up our brain!"

Every discovery I've ever read about in neuroscience suggests that consciousness is caused by brain activity. As I said before we would need evidence of dualism in order to establish that something non-physical was at work in the brain. People like Deepak Chopra like to invoke the quantum world to explain consciousness but most quantum physicists reject his new age woo woo. Others invoke God or a designer, I do not see evidence for any of those, or even for the basics of dualism.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 10 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Titen

You'd be right in assuming that I think that "The whole is greater than the sum of it's parts" with regard to life.

As for the comment I made about Neuroscience and the research into Human consciousness the material I read was in Lee Strobel's book "Case for a Creator" in chapter 10 he refers to a year long study published in the journal 'Rescusitation' (CalTech) in 2001 that 'provided evidence' (Strobel's words) that the consciousness continues after the brain has stopped functioning and the person is clinically dead.

Granted that's only one study (that I can find at the moment).

As I read the information it was from 63 Heart attack victims who were later revived so I can accept that it may be that we don't know what the 'point of death' is but the question would still remain about how the brain could 're-boot' itself after being totally shut down like that?

This is what I'm talking about with the Neuroscience and I recognise that not all the people working in the field accept this (most think that there might still be brain activity but too miniscule to register with our machines) is that it opens the door to the possibility that our 'minds and souls' while linked to our brains may not actually be the result of the processes of the brain (though I'm sure it affects us in some ways!)

All Human life runs on electrical some form of current ( I forget the calculation but it's something like .0001 miliamps) without it you only have the materials but no life, how does that 'spark' come? when does it come? we just don't know!

I'd agree with you about Deepak Chopra's stuff and don't really go for the new age stuff!

To me the designer is God and even if we have to go through a few cycles of regression we still end up with something had to be the 'prime cause' I just give that 'cause' the name of God and like to think of him as a person.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 10 months ago from back in the lab again Author

"that 'provided evidence' (Strobel's words) that the consciousness continues after the brain has stopped functioning and the person is clinically dead."

The only way that such an experiment could even be done is by killing people. I've searched the internet and Google Scholar and could not find a copy of the study to look at however I am assuming that in actuality the study had to do with NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCES. NDEs are experiences that happen in dying brains but the patient is later resuscitated. Brain death where brain processes have completely stopped, however, is irreversible.

Part of the problem is there are multiple types of death, as weird as that sounds. There is clinical death, cardiopulmonary death (where the heart stops) and brain death.

"the question would still remain about how the brain could 're-boot' itself after being totally shut down like that?"

Just because your heart stops doesn't mean you're brain dead and similarly they can keep your heart and lungs going while you are totally brain dead.

"is that it opens the door to the possibility that our 'minds and souls' while linked to our brains may not actually be the result of the processes of the brain"

Possibilities are great and all but there needs to be some evidence that a "soul" exists or even a coherent definition of what in the hell a soul is first.

"how does that 'spark' come? when does it come? we just don't know!"

We do know. Metabolic processes. Why do you think we eat food and need a certain amount of calories a day? Chemical processes in the body turn food into the chemicals our bodies use to run. That's where the electricity comes from. And after we die our metabolic processes, brain activity and other biological processes cease, the excess energy is released into the dead tissue and dissipates. As far as science is concerned being fully brain dead means you don't exist anymore.

"I just give that 'cause' the name of God and like to think of him as a person."

I could call the cause Marvin and say he is a penguin from the great Cosmic Ice Shelf and our Universe hatched from an egg he laid and neither of us would ever be able to prove anything to each other.

Personally I'm not sure that Universes are the sort of things which need causes in the simplistic sense that we think of causation. I would say that if we are going to posit a cause however we need both an efficient cause and a material cause. An efficient cause is the process or person that does the causing while the material cause is the stuff that is being caused to come together. We can't merely have a creator without some raw stuff for him to create WITH. After all nothing that we see get created, from a newborn child to a newborn star, comes about with some pre-existing energy or material coming together to form it. Now we see things like stars and babies form without a God all the time, so it seems to me that the Universe could have a material cause with a perfectly natural efficient cause.

So if the Universe needs a cause I don't see any reason to think it is a living thing and/or an intelligent agent.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 10 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Titen

I've got some of the links you asked for regarding 'Junk DNA' this one was in "Scientific American' and is an interview with one of the Leaders of the 'Encode' program that worked on DNA and sequencing after the initial draft of the Human genome was produced http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/hidden-t...

The other one is from Time Magazine http://healthland.time.com/2012/09/06/junk-dna-not...

As for the quotes from Strobel I think he was talking about 'Near death' experiences. It may be that the doctors got it wrong.

As for your comment about the efficient cause and material cause, that's been the debate that creationists and big bang theorists have been having for a while. Kraus says that "Nothing in the sense a Physicist says it" isn't the absence of matter but some other form (like a quantum field where atoms pop in and out of the material universe) but John Lennox points out that you still have to have an external force that causes them to, I've just got Kraus' book out where he argues this so I'm going to have a read of it.

As for not seeing any reason to think that there is a living and or intelligent being behind the universe, I'd naturally disagree with you but I need to read the book first.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 10 months ago from back in the lab again Author

Thanks Lawrence, very interesting stuff regarding Junk DNA there. The first link suggests up to 80% of the genome may be functional however it also states that there is a very wide range - between 9% and 80% - so clearly more research is needed. It also suggests that while 80% appears to be chemically active that they are not sure the copying of that 80% is crucial or not.

Another fascinating recent development in genetics is the study of epigenetics. Epigenetics is the study of how environmental factors can actually turn some genes on or off. Epigenetic changes don't actually change the DNA but simply change what genes are active.

"but John Lennox points out that you still have to have an external force that causes them to"

Actually as far as we can tell you don't need a cause. There are virtual particles that pop in and out of existence all the time on the quantum level and as far as we can tell they do this only because of the probabilistic nature of quantum mechanics. Now there may be some underlying root cause for virtual particles but none is currently apparent, they currently appear to emerge naturally from the vacuum of space.

I don't think we can take our every day thoughts about causation and apply them to things like Universes, or tiny quantum particles. It may make complete sense to say that a chair or a car or an event on Earth all had to have some kind of cause but when we try to take our intuition about causation and apply it to an entire Universe, I don't know.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 10 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Titen

Thanks for getting back to me on these. As I said I got Kraus' book out the library yesterday that goes into this so it should be interesting to read it and look stuff up on the net.

I think we'll have to 'wait and see' about possible root causes for quantum mechanics (and meanwhile probably enjoy good debate from both sides of the divide :-) )

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