The Instigator
AWSM0055
Con (against)
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The Contender
daley
Pro (for)
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Does God exist

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/20/2015 Category: Religion
Updated: 11 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 511 times Debate No: 84133
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (9)
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AWSM0055

Con

[This is a re-upload of my previous debate (of the same topic) because a troll accepted it and ruined it.]

Con
This is how the debate will go (read very carefully):

Round 1
Turn 1: Rules and definitions (Con)
Turn 2: Acceptance and first argument for God's existence (Pro)

Round 2
Turn 3: Rebutal (Con)
Turn 4: Counter-rebuttals and extra arguments (Pro)

Round 3
Turn 5: Rebuttals and questions (Con)
Turn 6: Answer questions and rebuttals (Pro)

Round 4
Turn 7: conclusion (no rebuttals) (Con)
Turn 8: conclusion (no rebuttals) (Pro)

End

-----------------------------

Debate positions

Pro: God exists

Con: God may exist, though is unconvinced. Con will try to rebut Pro's arguments.

----------------------------

Rules:

1) Burden of proof is on Pro. I am not making a positive claim (that God does/does not exist) but I will try to rebut all arguments from Pro for God's existence.

Pro is making a positive claim (that God exists) once he accepts this debate. Though I created this debate, the debate is structured as though my opponent (Pro) created the debate, to make it fair.

2) If Pro or Con forfeit any turns, Con or Pro will have to likewise forfeit (respectively) to make the debate fair.

3) No one who is a troll and/or debates like a moron can accept this debate. Only those who seriously want to debate maturely can accept this debate. If a troll/moron debater accepts this debate, I automatically win.

4) Do not take advantage of any missing rules that could make this debate unfair. If there is a missing rule you would like added, please say so in chat (for anyone else interested in this debate, please look in chat in case of added rules).

5) Pro will be arguing for a deistic God (one that does not intervene in the universe, yet he still created the universe and is required for the universe to exist). Therefore, only deistic arguments are allowed for this debate (I.e. Logical arguments that aren't religious).

6) Keep all arguments precise and to-the-point. Preferably, arguments could be structured as follows (but doesn't have to be):

P1: A
P2: B
C: C

Definitions

God: "the creator and ruler of the universe and source of all moral authority; the supreme being." I will also add that God is invisible, above laws of physics but not above logic. He is omnibenelovent, omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient.

Truth: "that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality."

Exist: "Have objective reality or being".

Evidence: "the available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid."

Deism: "belief in the existence of a supreme being, specifically of a creator who does not intervene in the universe."

Deistic: anything according to deism

That is about it. If you want anything changed, please say so in chat.
daley

Pro

If there is no God, then our entire universe is just a happy accident, and we ourselves are just accidental byproducts of socio-biological evolution. But here are a few of the reasons why this is unlikely to be the case.

(1) Math is a Product of Intelligent Minds
In the movie "Contact," astronomers were able to look for intelligent life just by looking for things such as a sequence of prime numbers within a signal. Now, why would such a signal prove intelligent beings sent it? Why could it not be a product of natural forces or blind chance? It seems very unlikely to have meaningful information, and a consistent pattern which is independent of (not obviously caused by) the laws of nature. Something just as simple as a list of prime numbers is easy for us to see as the product of an intelligent mind. Yet, there is far more complex mathematics in nature all around us which shows that a vastly more intelligent being than we ourselves must have designed this universe upon a mathematical structure. Take for example the Fibonacci Sequence which begins with either 0, 1 or 1, 1, and each number following this is always the sum of the previous two numbers, so that you'll get 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55...This exact sequence is found in the design of living things such as the branching in trees, arrangement of leaves on a stem, the fruitlets of a pineapple, the flowering of artichoke, an uncurling fern, the arrangement of a pine cone, and the family tree of honeybees. (Douady, S; Couder, Y (1996), "Phyllotaxis as a Dynamical Self Organizing Process" (PDF), Journal of Theoretical Biology 178 (178): 255"74; Jones Judy; Wilson, William (2006), "Science", An Incomplete Education, Ballantine Books, p. 544, Brousseau, A (1969), "Fibonacci Statistics in Conifers", Fibonacci Quarterly (7): 525"32; "Marks for the da Vinci Code: B"". Maths. Computer Science For Fun: CS4FN) The applicability of mathematics of the physical world makes no sense if there is no God. Why would there be this happy coincidence that after the Big Bang, everything sort of just fell into place upon a mathematical structure? I don't have enough faith to believe this mathematical equation https://upload.wikimedia.org...... which the florets in the head of a sunflower are programmed to follow as they grow was made by blind, purposely, unguided chance. It seems more logical to me that just as a building is built according to its blue-print, that the universe and the life in it was created upon a mathematical structure because God designed it that way. I ask my opponent, why is nature written in the language of math? Is not math a product of a mind?

(2) The Fine-Tuning of the Universe
Life in this universe depends upon a complex balance of forces, so finely tuned that if we change any of them by even a hair's breadth, life would not exist, we would not be here. If, for example, the expansion rate of the universe one second after the Big Bang had been smaller by by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have re-collapsed into a hot fireball. There would be no planets, no life. (Stephen W. Hawking, A Brief History of Time (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), p. 123) The odds of getting favorable conditions for later star formation which leads to the existence of planets is one followed by a thousand billion billion zeroes. (P. C. W. Davies, Other Worlds (London: Dent, 1980), pp. 160-161, 168-169) If you change the strength of gravity or of the weak force by only one part in 10 to the 100th power, no life would exist in the universe. Not just carbon based life like ours, but also silicon based life, any physical kind of life we can imagine. (John Barrow and Frank Tipler, The Anthropic Cosmological Principle, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1986) I could go on to list more than 40 more examples of other constants that must be finely tuned to permit life; and not only must these forces be fine-tuned, but their ratios to one another must also be finely tune for the universe to be life sustaining.

There is no known natural law of physics that would cause these forces to be turned the way they are. They didn't have to be this way. So how could the mindless forces of nature get them all right in a single go at the Big Bang? The chances of that happening is simply too small to logically conclude that's what happened. Physicist Paul Davies was once an agnostic, but this evidence is so powerful, that after a lifetime of discovering more and more about how this universe seemed set up just so we could be here, he commented: "Through my scientific work I have come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it merely as a brute fact." (Paul Davies, The Mind of God (New York: Simon & Schuster: 1992), p. 16) Notice he didn't come to this position by faith, or by reading the Bible, but through examining scientific evidence. Robert Jastrow, the head of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, calls this the most powerful evidence for the existence of God ever to come out of science. (Robert Jastrow, "The Astronomer and God," in The Intellectuals Speak Out about God, ed. Roy Abraham Varghese (Chicago: Regnery Gateway, 1984), p. 22) Fred Hoyle declares: "A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics." (Fred Hoyle, "The Universe: Past and Present Reflections," Engineering and Science (November, 1981), p. 12)

The fine tuning of the universe is either due to physical necessity, chance, or design. There is no evidence of any law of physics that would make it physically necessary for the forces in nature to be tuned to these specific quantities. They could have been anywhere on the dial. Secondly, the odds of them all falling into such precise locations by chance is simply too small to face. The only option left is design. The universe was designed by someone.

(3) What God Must be Like
My two arguments above demonstrate that some being created the universe. Since the universe is by definition all of nature (if you look up the word "nature," the dictionary will basically tell you nature is the whole universe, all the things in it and how they naturally function), then any being that creates the universe is outside of nature, thus, is supernatural. If He created all of matter, then he cannot be physical. To combat this point Pro would have to demonstrate there is matter outside of our universe, which he cannot do. Imagine the amount of power it would take to create the entire universe with all its suns and stars? I don't how much that is, but you're going to have to imagine something very close to what people normally think of as a "God."
Debate Round No. 1
AWSM0055

Con

Thank you Pro, for accepting this debate.

Argument 1) OK, if I'm correct, you argument goes as follows:

There is mathematical processes in nature.
Only an intelligent mind can create mathematical processes in nature
Therefore, only an intelligent God could have implemented said mathematical processes in nature.

Firstly, you have a faulty reasoning that evolution is just "blind, purposely, unguided chance". Evolution is quite the opposite.

Darwin put it this way: Evolution is "descent with modification". If the modifications aren't beneficial, the descendant dies out. Let me expand on that:

If organisms produce certain actions and such mathematically, it is because they are "chosen" through natural selection. Organisms today with these complex processes are the product of 3.5 billion years worth of refinement, not random chance. The only random part of evolution is gene mutation. Organisms with faulty mathematical processes or faulty DNA die out, whereas organisms with better mathematical processes or "blue print" structure would survive better. This is evidenced by the fact that about 99% of all species that have ever lived on earth have died out.

Sources: http://press.princeton.edu...

And this would make sense for plants, as the Fibonacci numbers in nature are good for maximising space for the amount of light falling on the leaf, which would have dominated in flora evolution.

Source: http://jwilson.coe.uga.edu...

Another interesting thing is that in your source (Phyllotaxis as a Dynamical Self Organizing Process) it says:

"These patterns are surprisingly regular, so regular in fact that a physicist can compare their order to that of crystals"

So the patterns in life are comparable to crystals? Strange that no one says crystals are created by an intelligent designer! So why is life special in this regard?

So as you can see, a God is not necessarily needed for the complex mathematical mechanisms seen in organisms. Evolution by natural selection does the job nicely.

2) You have structured this argument in a way that concedes to abiogenesis and evolution. In other words, you are basically saying that God fine-tuned the universe to accommodate life. But why would God fine-tune the universe for life to exist? Why does God have to create the universe in a precise way for life, rather than creating life to accommodate the universe?

Anyway, I have to disagree with you. The universe seems more finely-tuned for black holes. There is about a 100 billion of them in just our galaxy. How much life is there in the universe besides earth that we know of? None. Why would the universe be fine tuned by God for life to exist if life itself seem to scarce in this quote/unquote "finely tuned" universe? If God really did fine tune the universe of life, he certainly did a bad job at it. Especially when you consider:

Extremely harmful radiation that is otherwise completely unneeded for life to exist.
Black holes that could destroy solar-systems
Andromeda galaxy heading right in our direction
Asteroids which could hit us at any time
Radioactive rock on earth that is otherwise not useful for life to exist, and is rather quite for life.
etc etc etc.

Furthermore, how do we know that the fundamental laws of physics could be different? It is only a mathematical hypothesis that the laws of the universe could be changed. Why do you assume that the laws of physics have an equal chance of being different via the Big Bang? What if the laws of physics in this universe have a higher probability of forming this universe than others? As you can see, there is no point in using the possibility of other laws of physics forming other universes as no one knows if and how possible that idea is.

However, even the laws of physics within this universe has doomed life to an eventual and complete destruction. The universe will eventually slip into a "Big Freeze", where everything in the universe will reach absolute zero and freeze, where life will never be able to live again. Not so fine-tuned after all?

Another point to consider is that if we, for a moment, imagined a universe without God, a universe like our own is still conceivable. Therefore, the existence of our universe's laws of physics is not good evidence for God, as the absence of God would not effect the existence of said laws. It would be exactly the same. However, if the laws of this universe weren't conceivable to exist unless a God exists, only then would you have a point.

Nonetheless, chance could be a possibility of why this universe has specific laws that allows life (as we know it anyway) to exist. Simply because something is unlikely, doesn't mean it's impossible. It's just unlikely. Winning a national lottery is extremely unlikely, but definitely not impossible (otherwise, that would defeat the purpose of participating). Therefore, dismissing the idea that the universe is just the product of chance on the sole basis that it's unlikely is ludicrous.

A multi-verse is also possible, though I wouldn't bet my money on it as it has about the same amount of evidence for it as the "God hypothesis" (except maybe a few quantum experiments with odd interpretations, but that's about it).

All we can say regarding the structure of our universe is "I don't know". Simply guessing and formulating unproven hypothesis is hasty.

3) You two arguments demonstrate a "God of the Gaps" fallacy. For all we know, there may be supernatural processes outside our universe, but to say that it is a thinking being is non-sequitur.
daley

Pro

The things chosen by natural selection are mutations which are random, so how do mutations chosen "randomly" end up in a "complex mathematical pattern"? Imagine the mutations are letters painted on pingpond balls, and you are natural selection, carefully picking the letters you want. Would you not have to be intelligent to reorder all these letters into complex, meaningful sentences? Seems you mistook natural selection for a person.

What's more, its seems you are confusing organism with information. The information written on paper is not the same thing as the ink and paper. In the same way, the cells, proteins, and other physical components of living things is not the same thing as the information they carry. So while natural selection can "choose" a mutation, it does not "design" the information carried by those mutations. If for example, you were to find a group of proteins growing in the shape of the word "GOD," would you think natural selection did that? What we do find is more amazing - complex mathematical formulas acting as blueprints, encoded into living things. Codes only come from minds.

I get your point that only organism that work well survive, but something doesn't need to be based on a mathematical structure in order to work well, does it? There are flowers that don't follow the fibonacci sequence, so there doesn't seem to be any rational naturalistic reason why something has to be layed out on a mathematic formula in order to work. And why would random mutations produce such formulas?

Yes, "the Fibonacci numbers in nature are good for maximising space for the amount of light falling on the leaf," but look at how many thousands of leaves don't follow this sequence! It isn't required by nature. You seem to be assuming this sequence could be stumbled upon at random. That would be like SETI hearing a signal made of nothing but prime numbers, and assuming that by accident nature devised it. We all know this would be taken as proof of intelligent life out there, why not the same approach with mathematics in nature?

No Christians believes that God came down and made each flower with his hands, but that He designed the programming, which makes their design possible. I don't see how finding such programming in a crystal means that the programs got there by accident. When you see a lovely pattern in a dress, you just "know" it was designed by an intelligent person. But very complex patterns are found in snowflakes.

I didn't concede to abiogenesis or evolution. I concede that the Big Bang happened. Also, your questions of "why God did it this way," is like finding a house furnished and even built in a strange way, one that makes you think "I could have done a better job." The fact that you don't understand why the builder did it that way doesn't prove He didn't build it. So the fact that you can't see why God would make the universe this way is not an argument against His design. Its an argument for your limited knowledge of God's will and ways.

When you speak of so little life in the universe, you seem to be saying that you know there is no other life out there, which is a bit presumptuous since we haven't been able to search a tenth of the universe as yet. Also, the fact that only one drip of water exists in a swimming pool doesn't show that therefore the swimming pool wasn't fine-tuned for water. The amount of life in our universe is irrelevant. Point is, the fundamental forces of nature are fine-tuned, change them and we could not exist. This will allow us to travel to other parts of the universe once we have the technology.

You ask: "Why do you assume that the laws of physics have an equal chance of being different via the Big Bang?" The physical constants given in the Big Bang are not determined by the laws of physics. In fact, the physical constants themselves are the laws of physics, or at least, a major part of it. So for example, the expansion rate of the universe could not have been determined by laws of physics that didn't even come into play as yet. There is no theory-of-everything law of physics that would necessitate the forces of nature to be tuned as they are. So in the absence of any fundamental law(s) governing the arrangement of these constants, there is no reason why just any arrangements on the dial wouldn't have an equal chance.

"What if the laws of physics in this universe have a higher probability of forming this universe than others?" Prove it. I didn't bring speculation to the table, but calculations being offered by well-known scientists who have their articles peer-reviewed. Show me evidence from the scientific community that our universe is more probable than others.As I said "If, for example, the expansion rate of the universe one second after the Big Bang had been smaller by by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have re-collapsed into a hot fireball. There would be no planets, no life. (Stephen W. Hawking, A Brief History of Time (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), p. 123)" I gave my souces. Please give your sources regarding other universes, otherwise you're the one speculating, not me. Since we have no evidence of any other universe, we have to operate under the assumption that ours is the only one until proven otherwise. Occam's Razor shaves away the need to speculate about unknown universes. So we are left with the ridiculous proposition, that this vastly improbable universe, just happened to come into existence via the Big Bang, on the first go! I don't have enough faith to believe that all these constants and quantities just happened by chance to be just in the right place. Only a Creator makes sense of this.

The coming destruction of the universe is predicted in Revelation, so, no surprize to Christians. But the fact that a house will eventually fall apart over the years doesn't prove it wasn't designed. So the coming end of our cosmos doesn't prove God didn't create it. Not even Christians believe that this earth is forever, but I don't want to go into theology here. You seem to be saying that if a God made this universe, you must be able to see the rational in His ways. Let's remember you structured this debate for me to argue for a deistic god who doesn't care about us, or interfer in the universe, so for all we know, such a God could have made this universe as an experiment. Anything is possible with that sort of god you postulate. My only argument is that whatever kind of god it is, the universe shows clear evidence of having been made by an intelligent Creator.

You illustration of the lottery doesn't work, why? A statistical impossibility is a probability that is so low as to not be worthy of mentioning. Anything with less than a 1X10^-50 chance of happening is dismissed as never happening, period. Here is an important point about probability. If there are enough possible events with very low probability then it is likely that at least some of them will occur. Or, if an event with low probability is given a large number of opportunities, then its chance of happening at some time may be quite large. But in the case of this universe, we have just ONE chance to get it right, and literally trillions of combinations that could have occurred. Its like closing your eyes and picking the only white see out of trillions of black ones in a pool and the first try. With the lottery, there are many chances as represented in all the buyers of tickets. If only one single person was going to buy one single ticket and the lottery was only drawn a single time, and they won, then that would properly illustrate our universe and us coming into being. But we would know that was a set up.

A multiverse doesnt' solve the problem as you need a generator which produces all these universes, which will require its own complexity, just adding improbability upon improbability. I don't assume its a thinking being that made the cosmos, I see evidence of His intellect in His creation
Debate Round No. 2
AWSM0055

Con

Paragraph 1) "Would you not have to be intelligent to reorder all these letters into complex, meaningful sentences?"

In you analogy, yes, but that doesn't apply to evolution. The whole point of natural selection is to one-up your opponents or fellow organisms. If your random genetic mutations doesn't work out, you die. If a whole group of species can't one-up their opponents, the whole species dies out.

Let me use an analogy. Natural selection is like sieving for gold (a lot of people did this back in the gold rush in Australia). Genetic mutations are like what you find in the sieve (random rocks, mud etc). Obviously, you throw out any valueless material of no worth, yet you keep the gold you find now-and-then.

Eventually, if you did this long enough, you would end up with a whole heap of gold.

Same with evolution via natural selection. Obviously, no one is saying that complex organisms are formed completely randomly any more than randomly finding a heap of gold next to a river bed. Nevertheless, with a long process of refinement, you can profit quite a bit.

In the case of vegetation's mathematical processes, any other vegetation with a less well working process will die out, while the better competitors live on. See! Gradual refining process!

Paragraph 2) Well, 3.5 billion years worth of the above refinement can produce very complex organisms. For instance, say we had three plants with three different mathematical formulas (the analogy is grossly oversimplified, so there is probably holes in it. Nevertheless, I hope it gets my point across):

Plant one: 1+1=2
Plant two: 1+1=4
Plant three: 1+2=2

Now, which plant is correct? Plant one, obviously. So what will happen to the wrong plants? They die out. Plant one is correct and therefore stronger, whereas plant's two and three are woefully incorrect. So, plant one will live one to the next generation, and the same process starts all over again on a new, slightly more advanced formula.

Now again, don't take the analogy above as how evolution exactly works. It's only meant to show how better and more complex formulas can evolve over time with natural selection.

Paragraph 3) "but something doesn't need to be based on a mathematical structure in order to work well, does it?"

You just refuted yourself. You say mathematical processes in nature is evidence for a God, and then you say you don't necessarily need mathematical structures to work, and therefore you don't need God. This one sentence goes against everything you've said so far.

Nevertheless, evolution doesn't have to make logical sense in nature for it to work. Often certain characteristics (mathematical or otherwise) work for other reasons, maybe completely separate from other plants.

"There are flowers that don't follow the fibonacci sequence, so there doesn't seem to be any rational naturalistic reason why something has to be layed out on a mathematic formula in order to work"

That's an argument from incredulity. Simply because you don't see a rational or logical reason for non-Fibonacci flowers to come about by natural selection, doesn't mean they didn't.

Also, the flowers main purpose is to attract insects to pollinate, not to catch sunlight. So I'm not entirely surprised when you say there are some flowers that don't follow this structure.

For instance a monkey's hands evolved primarily for swinging in trees. Then came humans, whom use hands in a completely different way from what was originally "intended", and is one of the best tool making tools ever known to nature.

So what does this have to do with leafs? Well, some leafs are used for photosynthesis. On the other hand, plants have evolved with leafs drastically different from original "intent" (case in point, Venus fly trap). So not all of nature has to stick to a rigid Fibonacci formula to survive. All a plant needs is to survive, and maths takes a small part in this. But not always.

Paragraph 4) No, the formula is not required by nature! No more than only claws are required for killing prey! A feature doesn't have to be required to dominate, and not all organisms dominating need this rule to survive! They can find other ways to do so.

Furthermore, with you SETI analogy, we know that such formulas cannot come about naturally, because there is no random selection and genetic mutations in space. There is in nature, however, which nicely explains why and how complex features could come about naturally.

Paragraph 5) When did Christianity come into play? We're talking about a deistic God, not a theistic God (and definitely not Jesus/Yahweh).

" don't see how finding such programming in a crystal means that the programs got there by accident."

So your saying someone programmed crystals to act like they do mathematically? Really?

Maths is used to often (yet not perfectly) describe nature in an objective way through symbols etc. Nature wasn't created to fit within mathematics (which you yourself admitted earlier). For example, that's like saying that wind blows north to allow a flag to blow northward, which is illogical. Rather, the flag blows northward because the wind is blowing in that direction.

"When you see a lovely pattern in a dress, you just "know" it was designed by an intelligent person"

Well, yeah, because I've seen one being made, I've also seen a piece of paper on it saying "Mad in China". Furthermore, it is not beyond the real of nature to conclude a piece of clothing was made by a human. God on the other hand, is WAY more abstract. And snowflakes are made naturally. Are you also arguing that God made snowflakes act as they do?

Paragraph 6: But your arguing that the house was made for inhabiting. Imagine the house had leaky sewage, unclean water, easily destroyed and extremely fragile with broken gas pipes and toxic airborne chemicals.. Would you live it it? Would you conclude that it's made by a master architecture? No!

Same with the universe.

Paragraph 7) Okay, you seemed to have shown a valid problem with my argument (so I accept your refutation), I'll change my argument to "Why is there so little life" to "Why is the majority of the universe uninhabitable for life".

Paragraph 8) "there is no reason why just any arrangements on the dial wouldn't have an equal chance."

That's an argument from ignorance. Simply because there is no reason why they wouldn't all have an equal chance, doesn't mean they all did have an equal chance.

Paragraph 9) "Prove it. I didn't bring speculation to the table, but calculations being offered by well-known scientists who have their articles peer-reviewed."

No, it was a hypothetical. I think you missed the "What if..." Part of my question. I didn't claim that our laws of physics were more probable than others. I was simply saying that it's possible, which would therefore make you argument of fine tuning irrelevant. The fact of the matter is that you can't predict the possibility of our universe appearing unless you know the probability of each possible universe appearing.

"Please give your sources regarding other universes"

I wasn't the one claiming that other universes were possible, you did. All I said was basically "What if this universes laws of physics were more probable." Like I said, we don't know that, so it's pointless forming such a "fine tuning" conclusion from something we don't know.

And no one has said the Big Bang got it all right the first go. Like I said, there is also the multiverse theory (even with no evidence for it). One guess is as good as another. But to find truth, we need properly backed up answers.

And your proposition is that some God form who-knows-where did it because...reasons. Not very convincing, is it?

Paragraph 10. I don't care about the bible. That's not what's this argument is about.

And no, I'm not arguing that's the universe wasn't designed. I'm arguing that the universe wasn't designed for life as you propose

(I'm gonna continue my rebuttal in comments. Running out of room)
daley

Pro

Why do sunflowers and other plants abide by mathematical rules? Evolutionists theorise that sunflowers can pack in the maximum number of seeds if each seed is separated by an irrational-numbered angle. But nature could not "know" this in advance, so they assume that nature "stumbled" by accidental mutation upon the fibonacci sequence, which was then selected by natural selection. The fibonacci sequence is only one example of math in nature. Snowflakes exhibit six-fold radial symmetry, with elaborate, identical patterns on each arm. Another accidental discovery? The nautilus mollusk all adhere to some type of logarithmic spiral. Another chance mutation? Was it blind, unintelligent, natural forces that taught bees how to create incredible hexagonal figures in all their honeycombs? We humans beings need the assistance of a compass and ruler to reproduce it, so how did bees "know" how to do it without any tools? Where does the programming for this come from? For us to do it, we need to consciously be "AWARE" of what we are doing, and this information must be "LEARNED," but bees can't learn the way we do, so they need to be programmed. By who, or what? Con may say "instinct," but then, what's that anyway? How does that different from "programming"? I don't have enough faith to believe that evolution could turn bees into architectural masterminds! Like nautilus shells and sunflowers, each wing of our galaxy symbolises a logarithmic spiral, is natural selection choosing patterns in space too? I thought there was no natural selection in space! Why are orb web spiders so geometrically inclined to make create near-perfect circular webs that have near-equal-distanced radial supports coming out of the middle and a spiral that is woven to catch prey? These are no more effificent at catching prey than irregular shaped webs, so they couldn't be chosen by natural selection for that. And many spiders who have the capacity to make such webs don't seem to bother with it. Another freak accident of nature? Was it sheer coincidence, that the sun"s width is roughly four hundred times larger than that of the moon, while the sun is about four hundred times further away, creating a symmetry in ratio which causes the moon and sun to appear almost the same size when seen from Earth, making it possible for the moon to block the sun when the two align - giving us a total eclipse? Is it just chance that we just happened to be in the right place, at the right time to witness such a celestial event?

Con's answer is evolution via natural selection, but relying on such chance mutations only multiplies the improbability of a natural cause for life into the realm of "magic." "No matter how large the environment one considers, life cannot have had a random beginning . . . there are about two thousand enzymes, and the chance of obtaining them all in a random trial is only one part in (1020)2000 = 1040,000, an outrageously small probability that could not be faced even if the whole universe consisted of organic soup." (Sir Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe, Evolution from Space (London: Dent, 1981), p. 148, 24) What Con is proposing is so improbable we can't take it seriously. For example:

Out of 300 amino acids, only 20 are used for proteins (the building blocks of life), so the selection process has to be very discriminating. We can't say natural selection choose these 20 above the other 180 because these are no more popular than the other 180; its not like the 180 other amino acids died out. Secondly, the natural tendency is for left- and right-handed amino acid molecules to bond indiscriminately, but all 20 amino acids used for proteins are left-handed. To get a small protein of 100 left-handed amino acids from an equal mixture of left- and right-handed amino acids, the probability would then be 1 chance in 10 to the 30th power (or 1 followed by 30 zeros), but this small chance only measures the possibility of getting all left-handed amino acids. It does not say anything about their order. Third, in a chain of 100 amino acids, each position can be occupied by any 1 of 20 different amino acids common to living things, and these must be in a specific order to form a functional protein. What is the probability that the correct amino acid will be placed in position number 1 of the chain? It will be 1/20. What is the probability that the first two positions will be correct? This can be calculated by multiplying the two probabilities together (1/20 x 1/20 = 1/202). Therefore, the probability of getting all 100 amino acids in the correct position would be 1/20 multiplied by itself 100 times (this equates to 1 chance in 1 followed by 130 zeros)! The mathematician Emile Borel proposed that anything with a chance less than 1 in 10 to the 50th power never happens. (Emile Borel, Probabilities and Life (New York, NY: Dover, 1962), p. 28)

Evolutionists try to escape this by assuming a large pre-biotic soup covering the whole earth to give these small probabilities enough "chances" to occur, but this pond of chemicals would be saturated with all the wrong amino acids and other chemicals for bonding, making even the right combinations that could form no longer usable. What would stop the wrong combinations from contaminating the right ones?

Amino acids need to capture and convert energy from the sun in order to bond. (Charles Thaxton, Walter Bradley, and Roger Olsen, The Mystery of Life"s Origin (Dallas, TX: Lewis and Stanley, 1992), p. 55) But to build such an energy converter requires energy from the sun to be converter. A catch-22 situation. (p. 124) Worse still, the first living cell must be in place before natural selection can even function. Can may give the TalkOrigins argument: "The formation of biological polymers from monomers is a function of the laws of chemistry and biochemistry, and these are decidedly NOT random." But THAT'S NOT TRUE. If it happens naturally, then why can"t scientists duplicate this in the lab? Amino acids do not spontaneously bond together to make proteins. First, it takes a source of energy to do this. Second, the natural tendency is to bond left- and right-handed amino acids, but life requires all left-handed amino acids. Third, they must be in the correct order or the protein will not function properly. Fourth, it requires the instructions of DNA to get the right amino acids. Where did DNA come from? Fifth, protein molecules tend to break down in the presence of oxygen or water. Con says "no one is saying that complex organisms are formed completely randomly ," so show me left-handed amino acids binding all by themselves in nature with no human intervention! You can't!

Con assumes that plants with no symmetrical or mathematical structure are the "wrong" ones and will die out, but thousands of plant today that have no such thing are still alive today. He doesn't explain how complex formulas arose by accident before they can be "selected."

Pro says "evolution doesn't have to make logical sense in nature for it to work," but God does? He says "Simply because you don't see a rational or logical reason for non-Fibonacci flowers to come about by natural selection, doesn't mean they didn't," but because he doesn't see a logical reason for God to make the universe this way, that means He didn't?

As for you house with leaky sewage etc, would you conclude nobody built it? It just happened to be there through by nature? Even what you see as "bad design" in this case comes from an intelligent mind. "Same with the universe." And how did you know its possible that the laws of physics as we have are more probable than other combinations? Occam's Razor removes the multiverse theory for which there is no evidence! What we do have evidence of, is intelligent design all over the universe that can only be rationally explained by a Creator - from the math and design in living things, to the fine-tuning of the universe.
Debate Round No. 3
AWSM0055

Con

In conclusion, Pros only arguments were the mathematical structures in nature and the argument of fine tuning.

I tried to refute Pros argument of natures mathematical processes by using evolutionary theory as a well proven explanation for how it occurred, along with detailed analogies simple enough to understand.

However, Pro also shows a slight cherry picking fallacy when dealing with complex examples in nature. As I have stated before, organisms today are the product of 3.5 billion years worth of refinement, with over 99% of species dead as a result. Nonetheless, Pro still ignores this fact and instead emphasises the beast examples of complex "design", rather than accepting my perfectly reasonable explanation. Furthermore, Pro focuses on the one random part of evolution, namely, genetic mutation to prove that complex mechanisms can come about by evolution, which I have stated several times is not how evolution goes (similar to finding a heap of gold next to a river bed, which is absurd).

Once again, trial and error.

Pro also brings up at the last minute the improbability of Abiogenesis (life coming from non-life). I must remind him that the theory of evolution is different to Abiogenesis. I must also remind the voters and readers that Pro wasn't supposed to add this extra argument, as the structure of Round 3, argument 6 was:

"Turn 6: Answer questions and rebuttals (Pro)"

No new arguments. Furthermore, I am unable to rebut this new argument since this is the conclusion. Therefore, it would be appreciated if all voters ignore this extra argument during the voting period. Thank you.

Anyway, Pro finally says that I (Con) should conclude that a broken down home was created by a designer, even though it seemed horrible for life to inhabit. I agree, but that was not the propose of my previous refutation, which I clearly stated:

"I'm not arguing that's the universe wasn't designed. I'm arguing that the universe wasn't designed for life as you propose"

It was to address Pro's fine-tuning argument, not the "In Esse" cosmological argument (which is different).

Therefore, my refutations seem untouched. Pro merely repeats the same arguments from before in response to his refutation.

Pro also accuses me of bringing up the bible in the comments section, which I did. This seems a hypocritical anyway, since he brought it up. He even contradicts himself when he says "No, the earth really is forever". Before, he said "Not even Christians believe that this earth is forever"

Repeating refuted arguments, poor refutations and blatant contradictions.

Vote Con!
daley

Pro

Round 3 was not only for answering questions, it was for rebuttals. The information I gave concerning the improbability of evolution was in rebuttal to Con's claim that its more likely the complexity we see in living things, the math etc, is due to evolution. Con falsely claims abiogenesis is not part of evolution. I would just invite readers to examine for themselves any article on evolution that includes abiogeneis. "Highly energetic chemistry is thought to have produced a self-replicating molecule around 4 billion years ago, and half a billion years later the last common ancestor of all life existed.[4] The current scientific consensus is that the complex biochemistry that makes up life came from simpler chemical reactions.[270] The beginning of life may have included self-replicating molecules such as RNA[271] and the assembly of simple cells.[272]" https://www.google.com...

Con argued that natural selection selects the organisms that work better, which just happen to be the ones with mathematical structures as their blueprint. This never answered my question of where the mathematical blueprint comes from in the first place. Nor did he give any satisfying answer to the fine-tuning argument, except to hypothesis about things he gave no evidence for. While I was giving my evidence that I believe shows their is an intellect at work in creation, he gave no evidence at all for the existence of a multiverse, but simply assumed without proof that it "could" be the case.

He didn't address the point about the house being designed except to clarify that it wasn't designed "for life," but this doesn't touch my original argument that it was designed "by God," regardless of His reason for designing it.

I have said in this debate that the earth will not be forever, obviously, if (as in Christian theology) it will be ruined, all the cities will be destroyed, etc, then earth as we know it will be gone. But the nucleus of the earth, the rock itself, will last forever for it will be renewed. I think it was obvious what I was saying. I saw no contradiction here. It was Con who was claiming that if andromeda is headed for us, this somehow proves the earth wasn't designed for us, as if He could judge what goes on in the mind of a deistic god whom he says (for the purpose of this debate) does not intervene in our lives.

Con never showed any reason to doubt the calculations of the eminent scientists I quoted in this debate, who showed that if you change any of the constants I mentioned by a hairs breadth, we would not be here, and in some cases, the universe itself would not be here. Con tried to challenge me to disprove things that he could not prove, such as how did I know the universe as it is not very probable, which he made no effort to show that it was, but I replied that the laws of physics were not yet in place at the Big Bang in order to determine things like the expansion rate the universe would have, etc. So without any guiding laws, there is no reason to think life-permitting universes like ours are more probable. We didn't see any good answer to this from Con.

Vote Pro
Debate Round No. 4
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by whiteflame 11 months ago
whiteflame
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>Reported vote: NewLifeChristian// Mod action: Removed<

3 points to Pro (Arguments). Reasons for voting decision: Both debaters had good conduct, spelling and grammar, and both used reliable sources; however, I definitely found pro's arguments more convincing. He brought up some very good points including mathematics.

[*Reason for removal*] Voter requested removal of his own vote. For future reference, you can null your own vote by tying the vote allocations and removing the RFD. It will still be up, but it won't affect the debate.
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Posted by AWSM0055 11 months ago
AWSM0055
Some claim they do (unfortunately) but in truth, they don't.

They have made some vast discoveries on it (including self replicating RNA) but they haven't quite completed the hypothesis yet.
Posted by daley 11 months ago
daley
Actually, they do claim that they know.
Posted by AWSM0055 11 months ago
AWSM0055
BTW @daley, abiogenesis IS different from evolution, unless you are talking about how the first simple cells because more complex, which you didn't and/or misapplied. You solely addressed the issue of life coming from non-life, not the evolution theory involved in the process. You even said that amino acids didn't "die out", which is a no-brainer because abiogenesis involved chemical reactions, which are always step-by-step processes that never change. Evolution is all about change. So evolution doesn't apply at all until abiogenesis produced the first simple cell, which scientists currently don't know what that was.

It's like, for instance, being given all the ingredients to make a cake, with no instructions. You know the ingredients can make the cake, but you have little to no clue how to execute the recipe. That's the same dilemma scientists are in now. They know the ingredients, and they know the outcome, but they have no clue of what the order is for abiogenesis to happen (which they are researching and experimenting on as we speak).
Posted by daley 11 months ago
daley
(Continuing rebuttal)
"due to the fact that it is improbable for life to exist in any other universe. Obviously he didn't, because the universe seems to be almost exactly against life."

If it were probable that life exists, it would be no surprise we are here, buts its very improbable, which makes our existence cry out for explanation. Its premature to say there is no life on other planets.

"Paragraph 11) The fact is, we don't know how possible winning the lottery is."
Given the amount of participants and the lottery machines ability to generate different combinations of numbers for them, its very probable.

" For all we know, there COULD be multiple universes."

For all we know there COULD be multiple gods, how is this an argument? I gave signs of an intelligent Creator in the universe, give me a sign of multiple universes!

"Sure, but how do we know the probability of each one? For instance, say I had a ball of every colour in a bag (red, green etc) yet I had 10 white balls, what is more likely I'll get? White balls! Of course, there are 8 different colours of balls, and the chance of picking just one white one would be, logically 1/8. But the fact that there are 10 white balls in the bag makes it a more likely pick. Same with universe. The only difference is that we don't know the likelihood of each possibility."

Obvious to any scientist, there would still be a universe if we slightly changed the force of gravity, but we would not be here. Thousand of such universes have been realistically theorized. Life prohibiting universes are more likely than life sustaining ones because the chances of getting all the right combinations for life are so small. So there would be vastly more colored balls than white ones. https://www.youtube.com...

"And your generator for the multiverse is God? But WHY?"

Because nature shows signs of a superior intellect of great power in operation.
Posted by daley 11 months ago
daley
(Continuing rebuttal)

"Paragraph 10: Also, doesn't the bible say that the earth is forever? Oh let me guess, "It's a metaphor"?"
No, the earth really is forever. It will be ruined by devastation, and renewed. But this doesn't enter this deabate as you demanded a deistic god who doesn't intervene in human affairs. So why are you bringing up the Bible? We aren't debating Christianity or the Bible.

"Anyway, though your supposed to be arguing for a deistic God, you still say that he created the universe specifically for life, due to the fact that it is improbable for life to exist in any other universe. Obviously he didn't, because the universe seems to be almost exactly against life."

Creating the universe for life to exist in it doesn't mean he intervenes in out affairs, does it?
Posted by AWSM0055 11 months ago
AWSM0055
(Continuing rebuttal)

Paragraph 10: Also, doesn't the bible say that the earth is forever? Oh let me guess, "It's a metaphor"?

Anyway, though your supposed to be arguing for a deistic God, you still say that he created the universe specifically for life, due to the fact that it is improbable for life to exist in any other universe. Obviously he didn't, because the universe seems to be almost exactly against life.

Paragraph 11) The fact is, we don't know how possible winning the lottery is. There could be 2 - 2000000 participants, and we wouldn't know.

"we have just ONE chance to get it right"

Says WHO? What evidence do you have to back that up? For all we know, there COULD be multiple universes. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. After all, you are the one claiming an invisible interdimensional being existing above our laws of physics created the universe. I could just as easily claim that there is a multiverse outside of our realm.

"literally trillions of combinations that could have occurred"

Sure, but how do we know the probability of each one?

For instance, say I had a ball of every colour in a bag (red, green etc) yet I had 10 white balls, what is more likely I'll get? White balls! Of course, there are 8 different colours of balls, and the chance of picking just one white one would be, logically 1/8. But the fact that there are 10 white balls in the bag makes it a more likely pick. Same with universe. The only difference is that we don't know the likelihood of each possibility.

And your generator for the multiverse is God? But WHY? Another God of the gaps fallacy!
Posted by AWSM0055 11 months ago
AWSM0055
What do you mean "truism"?
Posted by Briannj17 11 months ago
Briannj17
Truism.
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