Does God exist?
Debate Rounds (5)
Round one is for acceptance only; no argument allowed.
Round two is for opening statement, round three is for first rebuttal, round four is for second rebuttal, and round five is for closing statements.
Good luck, and may the best man win.
The kalam cosmological argument:
Whatever begins to exist has a cause
The universe began to exist
Therefore, the universe had a cause
P1: Have you ever seen anything come into existence without a cause? A horse? Root beer? Pepsi? Computers? No. Why? Because this doesn't happen in reality. It defies all of logic to think that something can come into existence without a cause. Now, Lawrence Krauss has said that subatomic particles come into being without a cause. However, this just isn't true. They are caused from energy in a quantum vacuum. Krauss is re defining nothing to mean the quantum vacuum. Nothing in the English language is non existence. The quantum vacuum is a pool of energy and matter, and particles, and light. That isn't nothing.
P2: Atheists have attempted to say that the universe is eternal, however, this just isn't possible anymore. We have pretty strong evidence that the universe began to exist. For example, the universe is expanding, which means it had to have come into being from a point in the finite past. Now, many atheists have said that the universe came into existence from a huge explosion 13.7 billion years ago, in an event known as the big bang. Now, what makes the big bang so interesting is that it says the universe came from nothing and by nothing. But that doesn't make sense, out of nothing, nothing comes. After all, premise one shows that whatever begins to exist must have a cause.
Conclusion: Now that we know that whatever begins to exist has a cause, and the universe did begin to exist, it follows that the universe had a cause. What must that cause be? It must be: timeless, and spaceless, since time and space didn't exist before the origin of the universe. It must be immaterial, since anything beyond space can't be physical. It must be powerful, since it created the universe with no materials, it must also be personal, since the only things which can exist outside of time and space are minds, or abstract objects. But, abstract objects can't cause anything.
A fine tuned universe: Scientists have been shocked by the fact that the conditions of the universe have been finely tuned for life to exist. To give an example of this, if the rate of expansion of the big bang was changed by as little as 1 and 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 life wouldn't"t exist. If the atomic weak force was changed by 2% life wouldn't"t exist. This fine tuning can only be due to either physical necessity, chance, or design. Now, it can"t be due to physical necessity, because the physical constants are independent of the laws of nature. Now, could it be due to chance? The problem with this alternative is that the odds of the fine tuning occurring by chance is so incomprehensibly great that they can"t be reasonably faced. It is more likely that the stars will arrange themselves tonight to spell your name, then for the fine tuning to have occurred by chance. Thus, this gives us a designer of the universe.
Humans have the ability to see and appreciate beauty in all areas of life. This ability does not have its roots in evolution, for evolution is driven by survival, and the ability to see and appreciate beauty is not necessary for survival. Since the origins of beauty are not to be found in nature, we must look above and beyond nature (to the divine) to explain it.
Humans have the ability to behave morally. Scientists have put this down to our genes behaving selfishly, doing things because of such tactics as the belief in reciprocal benefits the subject and the object helped by the subject, good behavior towards one"s family to ensure the survival of one"s genes. These theories fly in the face of evidence that this is not what encourages most decent people to behave morally. Moral behavior of humans cannot be explained in evolutionary terms, so we must again look beyond the natural world to find our answer for it. Also, moral behavior is exactly what we would expect if God existed.
Firstly, it should be pointed out that Pro copied in its entirety his argument from a similar debate. (1) Judge this as you will.
Now, my opponent begins by using the Kalam Cosmological Argument, which states:
1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause
2. The universe began to exist
3. Therefore, the universe had a cause
My adversary then displays three points by which he intends to prove this theory.
P1. My opponent here makes the argument that nothing can come from nothing to being something. (He is wrong, by the way.) However, he fails to find the irony in his own argument. Pro says, "It defies all of logic to think that something can come into existence without a cause." Indeed, he is correct, existence from nonexistence is illogical, and yet my opponent claims that there is an immortal deity that has always existed. Intellectual dishonesty pervades this argument, that nothing can come from nothing, with a given, unsupported exception.
Now, I would take from David Hume's argument. Causation is simply defined as our perception of conjoined actions, with an action leading to a result. If we hit ourselves in the head, we know it will hurt, because we have hit our head before, and it hurt. While cause-and-effect through pattern seems an unalterable truth, the same principle does not apply elsewhere. David Hume himself said it well:
"When we look about us towards external objects, and consider the operation of causes, we are never able, in a single instance, to discover any power or necessary connection; any quality, which binds the effect to the cause, and renders the one an infallible consequence of the other." (2)
The universe does not work in the same manner; what happened once may never happen again. One result may be attained through a nearly infinite possible range of causes, so to say "everything has to have a cause" is errant, and not a necessarily valid claim. For example, as I will explain in my rebuttal to point 2, subatomic particles come out of absolutely no matter;there goes no physical material to a small amount.
P2. Pro is correct, "the universe began to exist". However, I do hope my adversary understands that existence, in the realms of both time and space, are endless. Our universe's infinitesimality cannot be measured, as space exists infinitely, being a concept rather than an entity. The Universe is almost certainly not alone; radiation from other universes has been detected, confirming what physical theorists have been predicting for decades. (3) Indeed, our universe, whatever its physical magnitude, is one of likely millions, so its creation (scientifically) is no more significant than another planet forming.
I would request my opponent to cite a source for his definition of a quantum vacuum. Pro says, "The quantum vacuum is a pool of energy and matter, and particles, and light. That isn't nothing."
The accepted definition disagrees:
"In quantum field theory, the vacuum state (also called the vacuum) is the quantum state with the lowest possible energy. Generally, it contains no physical particles. Zero-point field is sometimes used as a synonym for the vacuum state of an individual quantized field." (4)
By definition a "vacuum" used in this sense illustrates a lack of something, in this case matter. According to the Law of Conservation of Energy, energy must exist at all times and in all places. (5) In this regard, my opponent is correct, energy must be prevalent, but the other three entities he lists are not. However, what Pro does except is that subatomic particles can exist, albeit for a very short time, with nothing to form them; no cause. (6) This is incredibly significant from a scientific standpoint, because it shows that something can indeed be created from nothing.
The argument Pro uses, commonly referred to as the cosmological argument, is outdated and invalid. It compounds the problem, making the ultimate question not what created the Universe, but what created God. Neither of its premises are accurate or provable, so the conclusion is therefore null and void. Even if one was to accept the premises, they still have all their work ahead of them to prove that the Universe was in fact created by God, rather than my natural forces.The argument, if it was valid, would prove cause, but in no way God, and leave theologians standing where they were before, holding an empty bag.
A Fine Tuned Universe?
This argument has come up a lot recently, and is one of the finer attempts at proving God's existence then most. However, to say that the Universe is at a fine-tuned constant cannot be said, as no other variants are known. There is no basis of comparison to say that our conditions are special, or even superior to the mechanics elsewhere. There is absolutely no reason to think that gravity can be anything more or less than what it is, or that the expansion following the Big Bang could vary at all.
Every day, millions of stars explode, swallowing entire solar systems and galaxies. (7) In a surprisingly short amount of time, the Andromeda galaxy will collide with the Milky Way, wiping out any human life. That is, of course, only if the sun does not explode first, swallowing half of our solar system, or if one of the many asteroids that travel near our planet were to hit. There is a small chance that the collider in Switzerland could create a mass fallout that would destroy the Universe. (8) What fine tuning is this? What callous or ignorant creator is this? What nonsense, our Universe is not fine-tuned for life. In fact, it seems more geared to prevent life from ever taking hold.
Argument from Beauty
I can't say I have ever heard this argument, that beauty in itself is clear evidence for a deity. Like the Cosmological argument, this case is intellectually dishonest. To use this would require one to show that beauty cannot exist independently of a God;however, Pro claims there is an omnipresent God right now. If there is a God, then he created everything, and so the veracity of beauty's independence cannot be shown to be valid or invalid. Pro cannot both claim that a God created everything, and that beauty cannot exist independently of God, rendering the argument completely void.
Evolution is easily capable of explaining morality and good acts. Humans are social creatures, and so it is to our benefit that our fellow creatures survive. Good nature can be spread as an evolutionary factor, similar to hair color and height. (8) The less temperate and more vicious and callous a person is, the less likely they are to spread their genes through offspring, for a sizable number of reasons. Morality is entirely human, and entire evolutionarily derived, with no divinity required.
The morality argument similarly suffers from the problems of the beauty one. If Pro is correct, and a God exists, then it cannot be proven that morality does not perpetuate itself without this deity. This proposal that morality is dependent on God is entirely theoretical, and does not take on any tangible form.
I have few characters left, so I must leave it here. Good luck, Pro.
tala00131 forfeited this round.
I would ask for the conduct point, but if Pro posts his argument next round, then the debate may continue.
tala00131 forfeited this round.
tala00131 forfeited this round.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Conduct due to Pro's forfeiting of the majority of the debate. Sources as Con was the only one to use any--and they were reliable. Arguments because Con presented rebuttals to Pro's opening case--rebuttals that were never addressed at all due to the forfeits, and which soundly rebutted the argument as it was presented. Every one of Pro's supports for his position was attacked either on factual (the nothing/nothing argument which was rebutted as presented by the points on QM) or logical grounds (such as in the argument from beauty that Pro attempted), and never defended from those attacks. S&G seemed equal.
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