God exists: an aetiological argument

I write this argument to fine-tune my beliefs, not to convert anyone. This is for me an exercise in critical thinking. Challenge me wherever you see fit. I will try to faithfully label each thought separately for ease of reference to aid in debate.

a. Universe – all physical things.
b. Exists – has objective reality and adheres in nature to the three laws of logic: A is A, A is not NOT-A, X is either A or NOT-A. (Nothing exists which is not what it is, hence my argument that what exists must follow the laws of logic. If we discard logic as a qualification for existence, then arguing quickly becomes useless.)
c. Infinite – having no bounds or limits
d. Finite – having bounds or limits
e. History – time which has passed
f. Caused – made to be true, made to come to be
g. Nothing – that which has the quality of having no qualities but that one

I am open to re-defining or fine-tuning my definitions. I am not attached to them.

Premise 1.1 The universe exists.
Premise 1.2. That which exists is either infinite in history or finite in history.
Conclusion 1. The universe is either infinite in history or finite in history.

So far everything I have said should be agreeable.

Premise 2.1 IF X exists in location Y, it is impossible for X to move to a location an infinite distance from Y.

This premise is in essence stating that George cannot walk an infinite distance, for infinity is by definition unreachable. No number of steps will deliver him to infinity.

If the universe exists at Point in Time X
And If Point in Time Y exists an infinite distance into the future
Then The universe will never get from X to Y

Now, let it be that A is a point in time in the past.
If the universe has met both A and the Present, B
Then A cannot be an infinite distance of time into the past

Thus, the universe does not have an infinite history.
Therefore, the universe has a finite history.
Therefore, the universe had a beginning.

Most people accept that the universe had a beginning. This shouldn’t be a hot debate.

We have at this point established that either the universe was caused or it was not caused, and that the universe had a beginning.

Premise 3.1 If the universe had no cause but had a start, then it was caused by nothing.
Premise 3.2 Nothing has no qualities of generative potential, so it is impossible for it to cause anything.
Conclusion 3. The universe was not caused by nothing.
Ergo, The universe was caused by something.

Now my definition of universe is “All things physical.” So what I am truly here saying is that “All things physical had a beginning” and “All things physical had a cause.” This cause cannot be physical, for then the universe had a beginning but caused itself – from nothing, which I have demonstrated is false.

The universe had a cause which was non-physical and not nothing.

What has generative power, is not physical, and is not nothing?
For that is the creator of the universe, whom I worship.

Oh fuck me, not again. Yet another half assed, re phrased, regurgitated version of Kalam.
raises one eyelid, snuggles cat, and goes back to sleep

Wake me up if someone types anything original…

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The argument assumes this is the sole universe. To ensure this argument is worthy, it must be proven that the multiverse is not possible, and this sole universe is the one and only in existence.

Good luck with that, quality research has not resolved this question of a multiverse.

Greetings, Raskolnikov,

I would say the faulty premise to question is that the Natural Universe is just all physical matter/energy (matter is simply a slowed down form of energy.)

The Natural Universe is not just all physical matter/energy, but also all space in between all components of physical matter/energy. (The Natural Universe is, of course, not one solid mass of matter/energy.)

And since the distance between these components of matter/energy is measured in light years, it follows that the Natural Universe also includes all time.

Between matter/energy, space, and time, the Natural Universe is everything that exists. If the Natural Universe is everything that exists, then nothing can exist outside the Natural Universe. Thus, there can be no such thing as a Super-Natural entity i.e. a God, existing outside the Natural Universe to create the Natural Universe.

And since the Natural Universe includes all time, there can be no time outside the Natural Universe and thus no time that pre-dates the existence of Natural Universe. Thus, the Natural Universe is not finite and was not created. The Natural Universe, as Carl Sagan put it, always was, always is, and always will be.

What is called “The Big Bang” was not a theory of the creation of the Natural Universe, but, rather, a theory about the expansion of what we know of the Natural Universe. (And, for all we know, in the infinitude of the Natural Universe, maybe there were countless other “Big Bangs” that we have yet to discover.).

A great thought exercise, to be sure. (Goodness knows it gave me a mental workout.) But not a good argument for the existence of a Supernatural Being that created the Natural Universe.

??? What are you defining “cause” to be???

A) made to be true

What does this mean? Can I hold true in my hand? This is nonsense.

B) made to come to be

Perhaps closer to a definition.

C) no cause but a start

Whaaaa??? Again nonsensical word usage.

D) caused by nothing

Again, “nothing” hasn’t been measured or even defined. We have no idea what “nothing” can or cannot produce - AS it doesn’t exist in the natural universe.

An interesting side note: quantum physics has measured an effect before the cause.

Which leads to the important question: what caused the big bang?

The honest answer is “WE DO NOT KNOW”.

Anyone who can prove the cause of the big bang will definitely receive the Nobel prize, and become incredibly rich and famous.

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It seems you went to the trouble to defined infinite, then used a different definition in the argument. :woozy_face:

Does not seem to follow.

Greetings, Encogitationer!
Perhaps rather than all physical things, all things having dimension would be a better definition. For space, lacking physicality in a sense, still has dimensions.

“And since the distance between these components of matter/energy is measured in light years, it follows that the Natural Universe also includes all time.”
I do not believe that actually does follow. Say I measure dogs’ heights with units of cat-tail lengths. Are cat-tail lengths therefore something which should be included in the nature of dogs?
I think time is an attribute of physicality, but not only that. I think more that it is a measurement of change. I think it could also apply to God, who is non-physical.

I would not call God outside of the universe, rather I would say the universe is in a sense “within God.” For without God, it would not exist. Nothing is outside of the universe. Being non-physical, as God, means having no location. He is not “outside” the universe, nor is he inside it. Those are the wrong terms and the wrong way to think about it.

I also disagree with you assertion that the Natural Universe is everything that exists. I believe I have shown the necessity for something other than it to exist, with the consequence of that being false being the necessity of infinity or something coming from nothing.
There is also not a way to prove a negative such as “nothing but the universe exists” unless you define the universe as everything that could possibly exist. However, you have not defined it as that. You have defined it as physical matter/energy and the space inbetween. I would agree with that definition, but it does not follow from that that therefore a non-physical entity cannot exist, or that that is all that exists.

I do not agree that all time is within the universe. I do not quite understand your argument there, or if I do, I don’t think it comes close to being sound.

Does my refinement of that definition satisfy you? Is there anywhere else my argument might fall apart?

P.S. Thank you for being civil! Quite a few people here are not.


At the risk of engaging in a Seinfeld-ism, if The Kalam Cosmological Argument is based on Aristotle’s idea of The Prime Mover, as indicated in the Wiki page linked below, why is it called The Kalam Cosmological Argument?

Kalam Cosmological Argument–Wikipedia

Aristotle’s Prime Mover is not named Kalam, is not Cosmological, and judging from it’s reception and criticism, it’s not an Argument. What’s up with that?? :thinking:

Haha. Nothing isn’t that complicated. It’s not a ‘thing’ to measure. It is no thing. I.e., immeasurable.
I did define nothing. It is that which has the quality of having no qualities – except for that one. No ‘thing’ has no qualities. That is why it is nothing. It cannot have potential, or it would have qualities and being and be something. As soon as nothing is something more than an abstract idea, it is something, which is how you can know it has no qualities. For sure.

As much as I really dislike responding to presuppositional philosophy I have to say nothing in your Argument 2 works for me.

Time is a component of the universe in which it has different properties depending on the effects of physical masses or quantum field waves operating on it in localised areas through the agency of gravity.

The universe is not a train on a railway track, it doesn’t move along the path of time. It ebbs and flows while it expands with the universe. You are describing a classical interpretation at best. The universe is not a separate object from time. The universe encompasses time. They are inextricably entwined.
Physical Points A and B are meaningless.

“Thus, the universe does not have an infinite history.
Therefore, the universe has a finite history.
Therefore, the universe had a beginning.”

Thus, bullshit. Your universe train has been derailed along the track to infinity.

“Most people accept that the universe had a beginning.”

I assume you have no actual numbers for this, but in any case this is just an argument from popularity, which does not make the issue true.

This shouldn’t be a hot debate.
But it is.
Theists like to speculate about the beginning of the universe as the creation and hooked onto Lemaitre’s original ‘expanding universe from the cosmic egg’ calculations’ aka the big bang, but even he resiled from comparing his theory with the act of his creator god.
The honest position is that no-one knows if it had a beginning or not. The best evidence of quantum physics suggests that the physical laws that govern the structure and makeup of the universe only came into effect at Planck Time after (edited from the original before) the actual moment of initial expansion (1.855e+43 seconds). Before that no one has any idea what happened nor the means to describe it. It can be theorised with as much authority as claims of creation ex nihilo that a non-descript physical reality of indeterminate size and mass, existed for an indeterminate duration before the big bang and that’s about all.

The rest of your ramble with logic means nothing, because you can not establish your start from any evidenced position, it is all pre-suppositionalist speculation. The logic might be faultless but this alone won’t save the conclusions from being false.

My conclusion has always been you cannot argue the existence or non-existence of a god. A god is not an argument, only an experience.
Stop with the pseudo intellectualism and produce a miracle. Move a mountain or cure cancer. Stop with the mediaeval mumbo jumbo.
Don’t try to show how clever you are, show how truly compassionate and loving the god you worship can make you.
Then I might get really interested.

Good luck.

I actually read Aristotle’s argument before I had ever heard of the Kalam Cosmological argument. My argument is Aristotelian with a hint of Newton.
William Lane Craig christened it the Kalam Cosmological – and I hate that name. He also is not the originator of the argument. He only formalized what people had been saying for hundreds of years and became famous for it. I wrote the same argument in a private letter to a friend without ever reading it from anyone, and thinking it up myself. Infinity has always struck me as an absurd principle – and so did it strike the ancients.

My definition of universe, which I have refined in a comment, it is 'All things having dimension."
If ‘other universes’ have dimension, they are included in my definition of universe, and are a part of this one universe. If the other universes do not have any dimension, then I do not know what the hell they would be, lol. XD

My argument uses the (unwritten but now written) definition of time as The measurement of change.
I have never found sufficient reason to believe it is more than that.
There have been experiments done in which atomic clocks were taken in planes further from Earth’s gravity, and they came back unsynchronized with the clocks that remained on Earth.
All this shows is that the effects gravity has on the atomic clock are different when a clock is closer or further from Earth. It does not mean necessarily that time is literally different, merely that the machines behave differently.

That wasn’t my argument. I named my arguments. That was a statement that I did not expect that issue to be of much significance, but I was stating it anyway because it was a significant factor of the argument. You are right, I have no numbers. Even if nobody in the world but me thought it, I believe this argument holds. The only issues people might have would be definitions.

I would call existence and consciousness a miracle and evidence of God. However, we could discuss the miracles of Christ. Of Moses. Of the disciples.

Well, that is something now isn’t it? Therefore this can’t be nothing.

You’ve defined a quality to “it”. Lacking something doesn’t negate it. This has yet to be demonstrated. When you find this particular non-quality no-thing (which in itself is a quality), make sure to watch it close for an observable “start” “cause” or “creator”

(Not sure how long you’ll have to watch it though) :thinking:

WLC’s expansion of the Kalam Cosmological Argument is the most popular of those debunked and tiresome attempts to “logic” a god/creator/2 white mice into being. Most people know this crap by the “kalam” name. Hence its use when a poster once again (ho hum) attempts a slight word variation or definitions in the same old ordure, to convince us that his version of a god/creator/two white mice exist. It is fundamentally flawed and has been disassembled, debunked, dissected and done to a bloody death everywhere that it is spouted by the true believer and faux intellectuals.

It doesn’t work, neither did Aristotle’s original argument

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You have conveniently left out the rest of my sentence, which was “except for that one.” It has one quality, the quality of having no other qualities.
Nothing is simply that which isn’t anything. Thus it cannot cause anything, for it is not something which has the attribute of the potential for causality, for then it would not be nothing.

Or X is either X or not X … LOL… but your point is made… The laws of logic apply.

History??: Weird! Let’s see where you go.

Issue #1: F Caused?? True? Made to be? Weird definitions but let’s see where it goes.

G?? Nothing? No qualities but which one? Are you asserting ‘nothing’ which has no quality, is a quality? (Quality: the standard of something as measured against other things.) In the absence of all things, against what would you measure nothing? If there were nothing, how could it possibly be known?

No idea why I need to redefine them yet. It is contingent on what you do with them. I would assert “nothing” to be the absence of all qualities. But let’s move forward…

Premise 1: The universe exists (All physical things.) Okay… I can roll with it as long as we stay within the universe.

Premise 2: That which exists is Infinite or finite (History adds nothing to this.) Knew it was weird.

Conclusion 3: The universe is infinite or finite. OKAY? So what?

Premise 2.1 Infinity is not a measurable distance so the statement would be true. There is no location an infinite distance from anything. Infinity is not a quantity.

Regarding good ole George… Yes, George can not walk an infinite distance. That does not mean George can not walk infinitely. Again: Infinity is not a distance.

If the universe exists at point X.
Point Y exists at an infinite distance into the future (woops! New concept! We have not defined future. Anyway, since I eliminated ‘history’ (past) and just went with infinite, you can get away with it.

Point Y can not exist at an infinite distance from point X. Infinite is not a number. It is not a place.

The universe will never get from X to Y??? Is the universe going someplace? You are engaged in an equivocation error. You are using the word infinity to mean a measurable distance of one kind or another and this is a misuse of the term “infinity.”

A is in the past.
B is the present.
If the universe contains both A and B it can not be infinite? Sure it can. Do you perhaps mean that it only contains A and B? These are measurable points and so have nothing to do with infinity.

Thus “THIS” universe would not have an infinite history as described.

All this BS to assert the universe had a cause? You must demonstrate the cause. Your infinity argument does no such thing. It is fallacious in its use of the word 'infinity."

Most people accept the idea that the universe had a beginning. (Do you understand what that means?) I don’t think you do.

Our universe. The universe in which we find ourselves. This place in which we live, began. (This says NOTHING AT ALL ABOUT THE COSMOSE.) It says nothing at all about anything at all outside of the universe.

The universe, as we know it, began, as a singularity and then it expanded in an event we call “The Big Bang.” The cause of this event is, as of yet, unknown. What is beyond the singularity is also unknown. Physics breaks down at Panck Time. Nothing can yet be said about the universe prior to this event and that makes the Cosmose, the great unknown.

Argument 3??? I think you are already dead in the water… no real need to go any further.

Premise 3.1 Pure rambling garbage. NO.
If the universe had no cause, then it had no cause. It merely sat there. (What do you mean it was caused by nothing. IT’S JUST SITTING THERE. What cause are you looking for? If it is just sitting there, there is nothing to cause.)

If it had a start - I assume you mean, began to expand, it may or may not have had a cause. In any case, you would have to demonstrate your claim. Currently cosmologists and physicists are unable to do that, so they DON’T. Which makes anything you say beyond this point an argument from incredulity fallacy.

The universe was not caused by nothing? Okay. What makes you think the universe had a cause in the first place? Do you mean the expansion of the universe? Are you asserting that you know something beyond Planck Time that all of Science is currently unaware of?

All things physical had a physical cause. If the universe had a beginning and the universe is physical, why in the hell can’t the universe cause itself? The universe is a collection particles that interact, bond and make up atoms. These interact and bond and make up molecules. These interact and bond and make up the universe. How did you rule out a completely naturally occurring universe?

I don’t know why you keep bringing “nothing” into the situation. You merely assert the term as if it has some meaning. “Nothing is the absence of anything.” We agreed on that. It has nothing to do with anything you are discussing. It’s not even there to discuss.

I have no idea how you got to your conclusion with this garbled goop. Demonstrate that the universe had a cause. You would win a Nobel prize if you could do it. Not only do you make the inane assertion that there was a cause but that this cause was non-physical. Please demonstrate a non-physical cause of anything.

You can worship anything you want to worship. What you should probably do is take a science class or two and stop reading books about ancient iron age mythology.

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