The Instigator
alexlazar
Pro (for)
Winning
7 Points
The Contender
GarretKadeDupre
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

An omnipotent metaphysical god cannot exist

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
alexlazar
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/5/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 827 times Debate No: 48447
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)

 

alexlazar

Pro

I will argue that "an omnipotent metaphysical god cannot exist". Con will try to refute my arguments, but is welcome to also provide an argument to show that this is indeed possible and plausible.

My argument is based on the fact that an entity cannot be both metaphysical and omnipotent in the same time.
Con does not have to be a believer. It could also be an atheist that explores the possibility that such a god exists.

I looked up some definitions and they are all limited in a sense so I will provide my own:

physical world := the entirety of things and phenomena that we can perceive with our own senses or that interact with the things that we perceive in a way that allows us to reason about, to model and to test; it is the universe with its matter and energy and physical rules and any other aspect that we did not observe or understand yet, but interacts with the rest and is part of the whole; space and everything in it.

metaphysical world := a hypothetical dimension that exists outside or around or transcends the physical world; a dimension normally associated with the existence of a god and of spirits; whatever would remain if the physical world would be removed from existence.

metaphysical god := a hypothetical entity that exists in the metaphysical world and is usually associated with the creation of the physical world; a metaphysical being that is omniscient and omnipotent over the physical world; it differs from ancient physical gods such the Greek or Nordic gods because they were embodiments of physical phenomena such as the thunder and lived in the physical world (Olympus, Asgard).

I have set this debate with 5 rounds because I do not know where this will take us. If we only need 2 or 3 we can agree to forfeit the rest.

Rules:
No new arguments in round 5. Only rebuttals and closing statements.
No semantic tricks.
If you only have unfounded arguments (e.g. "The Bible says it so it's true!") please don't accept.
GarretKadeDupre

Con

I accept and await your opening arguments. According to my understanding, you have the burden of proof in this debate.

It's fairly standard here on debate.org to limit debates to 4 rounds, as 5 is usually excessive (especially with a 10,000 character limit) so if you agree, I'd like to stipulate a maximum of 4 rounds for this debate.

Debate Round No. 1
alexlazar

Pro

Thanks for accepting, Garret.

Yes, I have the burden of proof. The whole point of the debate is to have someone challenge my argument so that I can fing flaws and address them. We'll just see how many rounds it takes.

I will start from the assumption that there exists an omnipotent metaphysical god and try to reach a contradiction.

Here we go:

There exists a physical world. We, humans, exist in this world; we are part of it; we are physical entities.

However, we are limited by our own nature. If there is a metaphysical world, then we cannot percieve it in any way. We cannot even reason about it because it does not maniphest itself in our spectrum of understanding.

For example, the quantum fluctuations [1] from which physical particles appear are also in the physical world. Contrary to what L. Krauss states, that these "virtual particles" are "nothing" from which "something" comes, they interact with the physiscal world so they are part of the physical world. Similarly, should our universe be part of a multiverse [2] the multiverse is still part of the physical world because there are some suble interactions. Otherwise there would be no motive to reason about them.

Now, a god that is omnipotent over the physical world would litterally be able to impose any wish onto anything in this world, including humans. Some religions that promote beliefe in such a god state that the god has given humans free will. This means that it allows us to think for our selves, even though it could force us to take decisions as it desires.

I claim that a metaphysical god cannot prove it's own existence to all humans. I set aside the religious people that already believe (unfoundedly). This god could not prove its existence to a skeptical atheist.

In order for the god to prove that it is indeed a mataphysical omnipotent god to a human, it must provide the evidence/proof in the physical world because that is where humans reside; that is where they think and reason. Any evidence must have a physical nature for the humans to percieve it. But there cannot be any physical evidence for the metaphysical world because the correlation cannot be percieved.

Another way this god might try to prove it's existence is by breaking the physical world. A miracle (raising the dead, walking on water) is said to be an intervention from the metaphysical into the physical in such a way that what we percieve becomes contradictory with the laws of the physical world. However, this can be easily discredited as bein simply a result of what we do noy understand yet in the physical world.

In order to differentiate between the physical and the metaphysical we need to be able to draw a clear line between them. This implies that we must know everything about one of them (the physical) to know where it ends. We know that we don't know everything so we can always speculate that a miracle is nothing more than an unexplained phisical phenomenon.

So a metaphysical god cannot prove it's own existence to a human from the physical world. Thus it is not omnipotent over this physical world.

(It could alter the brain of the human to make the human think he believes in the god, but this is not a proof. This would be imposing the beliefe. The god has no way of proving that it is indeed a metaphysical god.)

So a metaphysical god omnipotent over the physical world cannot exist.

[1] http://www.icr.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...

By the way, Garret, you we correct that 10.000 chars are excessive.
GarretKadeDupre

Con

I hate to respond so briefly, considering how much effort your spent on your arguments, but I think they can be quickly refuted.

If there is a metaphysical world, then we cannot percieve it in any way. We cannot even reason about it because it does not maniphest itself in our spectrum of understanding.

This is incorrect. The mind is metaphysical, despite having a close relationship with the body. Philosphers reason about the mind (part of the metaphysical world) all the time.

Contrary to what L. Krauss states, that these "virtual particles" are "nothing" from which "something" comes, they interact with the physiscal world so they are part of the physical world.

This is circular reasoning, and can't be used to defend the resolution. If you assert interaction in the physical world excludes being part of the metaphysical world, you assume your conclusion from the outset.

Now, a god that is omnipotent over the physical world would litterally be able to impose any wish onto anything in this world( … ) This means that it allows us to think for our selves, even though it could force us to take decisions as it desires.

I agree.

I claim that a metaphysical god cannot prove it's own existence to all humans.

I'll keep reading and see if you justify this claim.

In order for the god to prove that it is indeed a mataphysical omnipotent god to a human, it must provide the evidence/proof in the physical world because that is where humans reside; that is where they think and reason.

The mind is metaphysical, so evidence/proof does not necessarily have to be physical.

But there cannot be any physical evidence for the metaphysical world because the correlation cannot be percieved.

This is simply wrong, as perception itself is a correlation between the physical (body) and the metaphysical (mind).

[G]od might try to prove it's existence is by breaking the physical world( … ) However, this can be easily discredited as bein simply a result of what we do noy understand yet in the physical world.

This logic works both ways: the Theory of Evolution can be discredited as being simply a result of a vast conspiracy to decieve laymen. If you decide that there can be no evidence of God before you even look at the evidence, then of course you won't be convinced.

We know that we don't know everything so we can always speculate that a miracle is nothing more than an unexplained phisical phenomenon.

Anything and everything can speculated. I can speculate that you're a unicorn. This hardly proves your resolution.

It could alter the brain of the human to make the human think he believes in the god, but this is not a proof. This would be imposing the beliefe.

This is not necessarily true. It's possible for one to demand proof by asking to know every winning lottery number for every lottery for the rest of your life. God would be proven over and over again everytime you won the lottery without fail. To question this proof would be irrational.

So a metaphysical god omnipotent over the physical world cannot exist.

I've shown you to be wrong.

Debate Round No. 2
alexlazar

Pro

Interesting attempt to a rebuttal. I will address your point one at a time. But first let me point out that you accepted to debate after I have offered definitions for "physical world", "metaphysical world" and "metaphysical god". Since you did not object to these, it must mean that you agreed to them.

I will argue against the following points:
1. the mind is metaphysical and we can reason about it so we can reason about the metaphysical
2. circular reasoning in attributing "virtual particles" to the physical world
3. evidence/proof for the metaphysical does not necessarily have to be physical
4. perception itself is a correlation between the physical (body) and the metaphysical (mind)
5. the Theory of Evolution can be discredited as being simply a result of a vast conspiracy to deceive laymen
6. if you decide that there can be no evidence of God before you even look at the evidence, then of course you won't be convinced.
7. anything and everything can speculated. I can speculate that you're a unicorn. This hardly proves your resolution.
8. it's possible for one to demand proof by asking to know every winning lottery number for every lottery for the rest of your life. God would be proven over and over again every time you won the lottery without fail. To question this proof would be irrational.

1. I will argue that the mind is not metaphysical in the sense of my definitions.

Information is an attribute of the physical world. Information exists as configurations of physical particles. Information is what drives the existence and evolution of life forms. Besides reacting to the physical and chemical attributes of our environment, we also react to the informational attribute. When I see a car coming towards me, I do not react because of the photons that allow me to see the car, I react to the information that these physical particle carry. Our brains are simply a sensory organ for detecting detecting the information of the physical world.

Con argues that "[t]he mind is metaphysical, despite having a close relationship with the body" as if the mind could exist without the body on some separate plane of existence and that it just so happens that it does have a relationship with the body.

What humans call "mind" is actually a series of thoughts. There is no evidence of thought outside a physical brain. However, we have evidence that thoughts are stored as memories in our brains. When a brain is damaged it can happen that stored thoughts are lost and new thoughts are generated incorrectly. We can even create technology that interfaces with our brain and read (to some extent) our mind [1]. At this stage we can only decode simple thoughts because we cannot interface to the totality of the brain, but this is proof that some thoughts can be interact with physical technology.

Con could argue that the meaning of our thoughts is metaphysical. But meaning is achieved when the physical brain reaches a state when particular memories are activated in the same time so that there is a correlation between them. Even the concept of meaningfulness is stored is the informational attribute of a particular configuration of physical particles, thus an attribute of the physical world.

So to conclude this point I will say that all evidence points to the fact that information is an attribute of the physical world, the brain is a sensory organ that detects information and the mind is a physical phenomenon generated when matted (brain cells) and energy (electrical impulses) are reaching a particular configuration.

2. I have stated that "Contrary to what L. Krauss states, that these "virtual particles" are "nothing" from which "something" comes, they interact with the physical world so they are part of the physical world." and Con pointed out that "this is circular reasoning".

He was correct so let me rephrase in order to clarify what I mean: "Contrary to what L. Krauss states, that these "virtual particles" are "nothing" from which "something" comes, they interact with things that we know for a fact that are part of the physical world so these "virtual particles" are themselves part of the physical world."

3. Con says that "evidence/proof for the metaphysical does not necessarily have to be physical". I have shown in point 1 how all evidence indicates that the mind is a physical phenomenon in the sense of the definitions I provided in the opening.

Con has yet to show evidence/proof for the existence of anything metaphysical.

4. Con says that "perception itself is a correlation between the physical (body) and the metaphysical (mind)". Perception is the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through the senses [2]. First, perception is a physical phenomenon where information is transferred from an physical emitter to a physical receptor. We cannot perceive what does not exist in our senses' spectrum. If an electro-magnetic wave is not within the visible spectrum, we cannot perceive it with our eyes. If a pattern of information in our environment is not within the capacity of our brain to process it, then we do not perceive it. The brain, like any other sensory organ we have is more or less sensible to the input it receives. Additionally I have shown in point 1 that the mind is a physical phenomenon.

5. Con says that "the Theory of Evolution can be discredited as being simply a result of a vast conspiracy to deceive laymen". I agree, but the burden of proof for the Theory of Evolution has been assumed by humans.

My claim is that an omnipotent metaphysical god should be able to prove it's own existence. Thus it should be able to provide the evidence and the logical argument to convince anyone that it is indeed an omnipotent metaphysical god. Since this god is omnipotent, it should be able to do whatever it wants so the evidence and the argument should be impossible to discredit.

6. Con says that "if you decide that there can be no evidence of God before you even look at the evidence, then of course you won't be convinced". It is rare that people have such strong convictions such that their ideas cannot be changed even by an omnipotent god.

7. Con says that "anything and everything can [be] speculated. I can speculate that you're a unicorn. This hardly proves your resolution". Again, Con is correct. But I am only human, not an omnipotent god. If I were omnipotent, I could prove to him that I am not an unicorn... Or could I?

8. Con says that "it's possible for one to demand proof by asking to know every winning lottery number for every lottery for the rest of your life. God would be proven over and over again every time you won the lottery without fail. To question this proof would be irrational."

I know that you could ask the god, but what if the answer comes from some entity with the powers of telepathy and a good influence over the lottery number generator? What if it is a lesser god-like entity that heard and helped you?

All that you can assert in your example is that the numbers just popped into your head. Unless you can correlate this with some other evidence, the source of the numbers could be anything. It could be pure chance, for all we know.

So my initial claim still holds: a metaphysical god cannot provide physical evidence of its metaphysical nature, thus an omnipotent metaphysical god cannot exist.

[1] http://www.psfk.com...
[2] http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...

P.S.: Just jumped over 7600 characters. Closing in to 10.000 and we may need several rounds for this. We'll see if we can stick to 4 as you stipulated.
GarretKadeDupre

Con

GarretKadeDupre forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
alexlazar

Pro

I would have liked to write some clarifications of my argument, but I do not have time right now.
In the same time Con has forfeited last round. I would like to give him the opportunity to respond to my arguments in round 3.
GarretKadeDupre

Con

GarretKadeDupre forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
alexlazar

Pro

alexlazar forfeited this round.
GarretKadeDupre

Con

GarretKadeDupre forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by accumulationofam 3 years ago
accumulationofam
May the Peace of Allah Be upon you all, Allah willing.
This debate is topic is Wow.

Allah created all that is in the heavens and in the Earth and is a Transcending and All Powerful God.
There is a law in place in this world, and those with the ability to seek it out, for example, discover water's freezing point, atmospheric pressure to form clouds, the boiling point of water, and so on and are able to write a treatise about Water for all to benefit. This is proof of Allah's Omnipotency and his Meta Physics.
Posted by alexlazar 3 years ago
alexlazar
Sorry for any spelling errors. The site crashes badly on my end and the spell checker did not work. I didn't have the inspiration to use another application.
Posted by alexlazar 3 years ago
alexlazar
Hi Steve, sorry about that. I don't have much time on my hands. That's why the argument period is so long and why I can't handle two debates in parallel. I'll be happy to debate this with you afterwards if you think you can provide different arguments/rebuttals than Garret.
Posted by SteveEvans 3 years ago
SteveEvans
Please re-instigate this debate, challenging me to be your opponent; Tried to accept, but I don't match your criteria, according to it.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Geogeer 3 years ago
Geogeer
alexlazarGarretKadeDupreTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Con forfeited, pro gets full points.