The Instigator
Torvald
Pro (for)
Winning
28 Points
The Contender
Deathbeforedishonour
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

God does not exist.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Torvald
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/16/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 948 times Debate No: 26261
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (5)

 

Torvald

Pro

While it is obviously something about which a total consensus can be reached, I am starting this debate by request, over the existence of God, by logic, reasoning, and scientific evidence.
Deathbeforedishonour

Con

I accept, however I will clarify some rules and definitions.

God will be defined as the all-Powerful, all-knowing, and all-loving creator of everything as defined by the Bible.

The rules will be as follows:

1. No Semantics
2. No Plagiarism
3. 8,000 characters.
4. No new arguments in last round.
Debate Round No. 1
Torvald

Pro

Hello Ryan, I didn't expect you to be arguing Pro for the existence of God! This shall indeed be a highly interesting debate!

I agree to your terms, and make a further specification, that documented citation for evidence should be allowed.

Now, my first point is that, while no scientific evidence can directly disprove the existence of God anymore than it can of unicorns, in lack of supporting evidence for the existence of God, and the overwhelming volume of evidence supporting such scientific principles as M-Theory, everything for which religion tries to source 'God' may exist completely independent of the supernatural.
Deathbeforedishonour

Con

Greetings, I would like to thank my opponent Torvald for his point. I will respond in the following way:

Burden of Proof

Firstly, I will start with the issue of the burden of proof. My opponent has most of the burden of proof here because it is he who is affirming the presupposition that God doesn't exist. To take it further, he himself is also the challenger of the debate. So therefore, the majority of the burden is on him.

Rebuttal 1

My opponent starts off by saying that science can not prove nor disprove the existence of God. This is fact. So in this debate I will contend that both me and my opponent will be relying on the probability of whether or not God exists or is non-existent.

He makes it his point that everything can exist independent of God. I will refute all of this. To say that God doesn't exist is to say that everything we know today came about in a cause ( I am assuming that he accepts a first cause for the Universe) that was non-personal and non-intelligent. To say this points chance, he and other people like him believe that everything we know came about by chance. However, the probability of this is not in his favor. Professor Chandra Wickramasinghe and the Astronomer Fred Hoyle both calculated the odds at 1 in 10 40,000's, a number far removed from the realm of finite possibilities [1]. My first contention will be dealing with this further.

I will give two contentions and maybe give two more in the next round.

Contention 1: Kalam Cosmological Argument

The argument goes as explain by this contention:

P1: Whatever begins its existence has a cause.
P2: The Universe began it's existence.
C: Therefore, The Universe had a cause.

And the next syllogism will explain why the cause must be God.

P1: The First cause of the Universe must be timeless or eternal.
P2: All timeless causes of temporal must also be both of extremely large amounts of power and personal.
C: Therefore, since God is the only explanation that fits this description, the First cause must be God.

The First Premise expresses the undeniable truth that out of nothing comes nothing. It is absurd to deny this because there is no record of "things" coming from nothing. This because nothing is constrained by natural laws, since there is nothing really to constrain. Seriously, if our Universe was to come out of nowhere then why doesn't a giant asteroid that is larger then our Universe appear right beside it and smash into? Why doesn't a black hole just appear and consume our galaxy whole? This is obviously possibilities that my opponent must concede could happen but haven't for no reason what so ever since it is just random nothingness.

And my second premise which is supported by tons of empirical evidence, the Universe gas been proven to be finite. The discovery of Universal Expansion [2] proves this for if the Universe is expanding outward then it must have started at a point. This point is what we call the Big bang [3].

Since the Universe is finite, then this means that before the Universe there must be infinity. But this is wrong because of the mathematical contradictions that result from applying operations to it. For example: Imagine that you have though sets of Balls. They are Green and Blue. The Green balls number in the same number as the sum total of all of the balls, and the same applies to the Blue balls since they are infinite. So the Greens are equal to the Blues which are both equal to the sum total of all of them. This absurdity proves that infinity is impossible [4].

And to conclude this contention, I will contend that since there is nothing before then Universe that can't be explained scientifically since science is defined as "Systematic knowledge of the physical or the material world gained through observation and experimentation" [5]. It would imply that there would be antecedent conditions, and since there is none of that, there must be an uncaused and personal cause. Furthermore, it must transcend time, since it must be timeless in order to create time. And lastly, it must be of enormous power if not omnipotent in order to create everything we know today from ex nihilo or well...nothing. I think it's good to conclude that God exists and nothing can exist on it's own without God if they would have never existed at all.


Contention 2: The Bible Prophecy

My second contention will deal with prophecy from the Bible. I will be reading from either the King James Version Bible or the New King James Version Bibles.

This second contention will be short this round because I have fewer characters then my first contention. I will expand on it in my next round. So, I will content that if the Bible be true, then so must be the God that it talks about. I will devote this contention on the topic of prophecy. Now I don't know about anyone else here today but if someone can predict the future then this is obvious evidence that the supernatural exists, since there is no natural explanation for the phenomena if confirmed. I will use Bible prophecy to confirm the whole thing since if it be confirmed that the people of old could do this, then there is no greater evidence for God other then seeing him face to face.

So, I will begin with a Bible passage: Amos 9:11, 13: "In that day I will restore David's fallen tent. I will repair its broken places, restore its ruins, and build it as it used to be,' … "The days are coming," declares the Lord, "when the reaper will be overtaken by the plowman and the planter by the one treading grapes. New wine will drip from the mountains and flow from all the hills."

Now, of course this is speaking about the rebuilding of Israel and the restoring of it's greatness at the hieght of it's power in ancient times. That went a long time unfulfilled until in 1948 for the first time in thousands of years became an independent nation, and it is now the richest country in the middle-east [6].

Another passage Micah 4:1: "In the last days the mountain of the Lord's temple will be established as chief among the mountains; it will be raised above the hills, and peoples will stream to it."

The passage speaks about the place where Solomon's temple once stood which is now the site where the Dome of the Rock stands. It is now sacred to both of the world's largest religions, Christianity and Islam (including also Judaism). These religions comprise a third of the worlds population. No other site on earth is a focal point for this many people.

And I will state that Mathew 24 has a great deal of fulfilled prophecy in it. I will ask that my opponent look it up for himself since I have few character let to work with, I will just tell the things that it speaks about. it speaks about wars and rumors of wars. I tell you know that, there is no other time in history that there has been a steady stream of world wide conflict then our times. We see civil war, we see world wars, and we are hearing rumors of wars (WW3?). It speaks of famine and I tell you that the UN has ward of a world wide food shortage in the near future [7].It speaks of disease and that is a problem we see everyday on the news. And it speaks of Earthquakes in verious places and there is a record rise in earthquakes in everywhere from China to L.A [8]. I will expand and add more to this in later rounds, but for now I say that this is sufficient evidence to say that God exists.

I will now await my opponent's response.

Thank You.

Sources

[1]http://www.evidencetobelieve.net...
[2]http://skyserver.sdss.org...
[3]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4]http://www.allaboutphilosophy.org...
[5]http://dictionary.reference.com...
[6]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[7]http://www.guardian.co.uk...
[8]http://en.wikipedia.org...

Debate Round No. 2
Torvald

Pro

Burden of Proof
While, as instigator and skeptic, the burden of proof is slanted toward me, there is also the consideration that the issue at hand is the validity of an ancient book of fairy tails, or the 'Benevolent King' described therein. If I were to have started the debate about the existence of Iluvatar, from Tolkien's various works, and made the opening statement that Iluvatar was not real, though I were the instigator and skeptic, it would somewhat be under the responsibility of the proponent to prove me wrong, since all the evidence is to the contrary. There may be several volumes of mystical literature describing or mentioning Iluvatar, but historical evidence, as well as lack of external evidence, would lead one to the logical conclusion that Iluvatar is a work of fiction. I therefore posit that the burden of proof is, if not equally balanced, certainly not, in the majority, on me.

Regarding My Opponent's First Rebuttal
You are correct, I am saying that everything we know today came about in a cause of chance, non-intelligent and purposeless. I am unfamiliar with Chandra Wickramasinghe, however, I can easily answer the point you raise about Sir Fred Hoyle. I am a distant cousin of Sir Fred, and am therefore knowledgeable, at least in small, of his theories and work. While he was indeed a great astronomer and mathematician, he was not without flaw. His theory for the origin of the elements may have been correct, but he also believed that universe is stagnant, and rejected the notion of the 'Big Bang,' having, in fact, coined the term 'Big Bang Theory,' in an attempt to ridicule it. I would call the calculations performed by Hoyle, therefore, to be highly biased toward disproving the theory rival to his own.

Regarding My Opponent's First Contention
I will not argue the logic of your first logic clause. However, I will do so in the case of the second. That the cause of the universe must be timeless or eternal is an assumption, though not an unreasonable one. However, that all timeless causes must be personal is absurd. On what scientific principles might you be basing your supposition that all timeless causes must be personal? Additionally, that God is the only explanation that fits both of these is also inaccurate. There are religions that list similar figures all over the world. I would think it folly to assume that the God of Judeo-Christian religion holds a monopoly over conceptualized eternal and personal ultimate rulers.

I will contend that my opponent dismisses out of hand that the universe could exist without a creator by the idea that without a creator, there could have been no alternate cause for its existence. Current scientific theory, namely 'M-Theory,' posits that the universe did not simply spontaneously spring into existence from nothing, but that a series of objects whose existence was unknown until recently, quantum microsingularities. To imagine them, imagine a series of highly small, much smaller than matter, even particles, generally speaking, bubbles, forming a medium or field like soap bubbles in a sink. It has been speculated that if enough space (space as in room, not space as in the medium in which things that are not made of matter, dark matter, antimatter, etc. exist) were to arise within this bubbling medium of microsingularities, they would compete for the space, and the first to reach a critical size would enter a phase of hyperinflation, initiating a 'Big Bang,' forming a new universe. The resulting energy from the hyperinflation would be sufficient to form the particles populating the universe. All of these universes would, theoretically, of course, exist within a 'multiverse,' a vast, potentially infinite expanse of parallel universes. Due to lack of information, I cannot, and I do not know that any of science's great champions can, explain anything further about the multiverse, or nature of existence, or its origins, in a scientific, information-based manner, as anything more than distant conjecture.
Regarding your question of a giant asteroid, larger than our universe, or a black hole acting as a phage, that will require a basic underlying knowledge of physics. If we were to assume that the laws of physics outside our universe are the same as those within, the an asteroid existing outside the universe could not become larger than our universe and remain an asteroid, unless it were made of some stable, highly strong metal or fibrous element, able to maintain highly porous structural integrity, as its own tremendous mass would cause it to become a gigantic, highly dense star, which would be short lived, being composed of metals, and then collapse into a colossal black hole. However, theoretically, the space between universes is a void, empty except for the field of microsingularities. This is different from space, as space is a medium of subatomic particles, mainly bosons, such as photons, gluons, and the theoretical gravitons, tachyons, and chronotons. Therefore, without such things to produce gravity, or any forces, no asteroid would be able to form. As for the black hole suggestion, without gravitons, the void around the universe would not be able to form such a pinch in space-time, therefore nullifying such a concept. A black hole consuming our galaxy, on the other hand, is, while possible, in the case of a rogue black hole, however, unlikely. Black holes are not, as many people mistakenly believe, cosmic phages, destroying everything near them. Most galaxies contain black holes at their centers, and contain many black holes, though less massive than the central ones (galactic cores, usually quasars, are similar to black holes, and may be orbited by a number of black holes). While I acknowledge the remote possibilities of the occurrences you have suggested, I note that they are extremely unlikely.

That the universe is expanding outward from a central point is not subject to debate, being highly verified. However, that prior to the universe, there must be infinity, is a curious statement, I would say. After all, that would plot the originating instant of the universe as zero on a timeline. However, since we are speaking theoretically, it may be said that, outside the universe, if there are no particles, there are no chronotons, as they are particles, and therefore no time (chronotons being the bosons responsible for time). Your supposed disproof of infinity is irrelevant. Infinity is, of course, only a concept, but one of infinite proportions. When you are dealing with numbers that do not end, and are so unimaginably larger than any number you can begin to fathom, adding two of such numbers makes little mathematical difference. I suggest you study up on calculus before further pursuing concepts of infinity, whether to disprove or affirm them.

I object to your final statement of primary contention: it is illogical to assume that, if science is unable to prove something, one must jump to the conclusion of influence by an omnipotent cosmic being.

Regarding My Opponent's Second Contention
I would contest that the ability to make predictions is evidence of the supernatural. Jules Verne predicted the invention of the submarine. Does that make him a 'prophet'? That modern events can be interpreted as having been referenced by Biblical texts is most likely mere coincidence. People have been interpreting the Bible's prophecies to be coming true for the last 2000 years.

While meaning no offense, I find your reference to the Dome of the Rock humorous, as the giant rock beneath the dome is considered sacred because the Prophet Muhammad supposedly rode a great, flaming, flying horse across it, leaving giant indentations. If so many people wish to idolize a giant rock, I will not stop them, but I perceive it with mirth.

While the ability to predict the future has been one coveted for centuries, even millennia, I contest its validity as evidence of the supernatural. (Expanded upon in next argument.)
Deathbeforedishonour

Con

Deathbeforedishonour forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Torvald

Pro

Given the opportunity, I shall now expand upon my previous statements, as well as making new ones.

Expanding upon My Regard for My Opponent's First Contention
While it is admirable to try to assign a logic clause to the explanation of why God must be the Creator of the universe, your logic is in itself, as I have stated, critically flawed, in that it is based on unfounded assumptions, and then makes further assumptions that are rooted in these unfounded assumptions. Now, it is, actually, likely to be true that outside of our universe, in the void, there is not time, because time is theoretically carried by bosons, specifically chronotons, just as gravity is carried by gravitons. This, of course, has yet to be verified, and remains a theory (of course, gravity is technically theoretical as well).
Now, regarding the conclusion of your syllogism, that "God is the only explanation that fits this description," I would ask 'which God?' There are hundreds of extant religions, to say nothing of extinct ones. Among the hundreds of extant religions, even, there are thousands of denominations, some of which differ drastically in doctrine, despite belonging to the same religion. So which 'God' is real? Most of them do have a God figure, of some kind. I find it highly unlikely that they all happen to be real. This begs the question that, if they are not all real, which one(s) is(are) real? Since Judeo-Christian religions, mainly Christianity, Islam, and Judaism (incidentally, in that order of popularity), are the most populous religious group, perhaps we should elect that they're true? But they're only so widespread because of powerful historical theocracies. Were we to ask the same question a number of years ago, during the rule of the Roman Empire (and before Rome invented the Catholic church), Jupiter would be the most commonly acclaimed God. Going further back to the time of the Greek prowess, would Zeus be the true God? Or was it Allah/Yahweh all along, and the Greeks and Romans (before the Dark Ages, ironically inspired by Christianity), the two most advanced civilizations in history, until a few hundred years ago, were just mistaken? But their religion was just as original as the ones originating in the Middle East. So perhaps they were indeed 'heathen,' as the Bible describes. Well, if Middle Eastern religions are to be regarded as superior, what about Egyptian religion? Why would Ra not be the supreme God? He is, in fact, remarkably like the Hebrew God, except he isn't celibate. He even had an inferior, who is still a 'God,' Horus, who is, mythologically speaking, almost identical to Jesus, except that when he was transfigured on a mount, he gained the head of a falcon. So, I reiterate, which God was the first cause of the universe?

Expanding upon My Regard for My Opponent's Second Contention
I reiterate that 'prophecy' is not indicative of the supernatural. Modern science can predict that in approximately 5 billion years, Andromeda and the Milky Way will collide, likely destroying most of the objects within both, and forming a massive collection of nebulae, to start over. Does that mean that modern science is an indication of the supernatural, because it can predict the future? Now, I am not calling Biblical prophecy as reliable as modern science, by any means. I am merely indicating that anyone can predict that something will happen in an ancient book, and, if you wait long enough, it will likely happen, because history works in cycles. Very seldom is something totally original to occur in history. If you trace history through these cycles, you will find that knowledge of them allows further prediction (this is partly how economics and sociopolitical experts are able to predict what a president's economic plan or foreign policy will do for the nation). Does this mean that economics and sociopolitical experts are magical, or prophets, because they can predict the future, in varying degrees of accuracy? I answer 'no.' Prediction is an inexact practice, and may not necessarily come true. For example, the Biblical prediction that the 'mark of the beast' will be born upon the condemned, and Jesus will appear in the sky, riding a white horse, and that the chosen will spontaneously vanish, leaving behind the damned, and that then, all of God's people will meet in a shining reincarnation of Jerusalem made of gemstones, a perfect cube, of 15,000 cubic miles, to watch Satan and his followers be flung into a large lake of fire. Personally, I find this oddly reminiscent of the words of someone on acid, not the words of someone intelligently predicting the future. Now, I would be fascinated if my opponent could justify these Biblical prophecies in a rational manner.

Sources:
King James Bible
The Grand Design, by Stephen Hawking, Leonard Mlodinov
Wikipedia: Bosons
Deathbeforedishonour

Con

Deathbeforedishonour forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
Torvald

Pro

Given that this is the final round, I would like to thank my opponent for presenting the most civil and well-founded debate on this subject that I have ever encountered. It is a pity you had to forfeit two of the rounds (possibly three; I cannot tell, given that I do not have the last word), for I am sure you would have had many more fine points. Since, however, I shall not have the opportunity to respond to those points, I shall make a final response to the ones you have already made.

Improbability of Evolution
I believe, when my opponent refers to Sir Fred Hoyle having calculated the probability of the universe occurring by chance, he means to reference the principle often called "Hoyle's Fallacy," or "junkyard tornado," the perspective of Sir Fred Hoyle on the Theory of Evolution. Hoyle once said, about evolution, "The chance that higher life forms might have emerged in this way is comparable to the chance that a tornado sweeping through a junkyard might assemble a Boeing 747 from the materials therein." However, there are profound differences. Sir Fred's analogy was based either on sensationalism, misunderstanding of the theory, or simple religious stubbornness. After all, organic compounds, such as amino acids and proteins, are highly adaptable, even when occurring in inanimate environments, such as a primeval ocean. Pieces of scrap metal are not so adaptable, in fact, are not adaptable at all, and being flung around does not change that. On the other hand, you can tumble amino acids around for a while, and they will begin to conduct some interesting chemical reactions. Another key flaw in Hoyle's Fallacy is that evolution is a very, very drawn-out process, occurring over hundreds of thousands, millions, even billions of years, sufficiently longer than a tornado would last in a junk yard. Enough exposure of such amino acids and proteins to each other, such as millions of years, is quite sufficient time for the key biochemical reactions necessary for life to evolve.

My opponent's reference to Chandra Wickramasinghe, I believe, was a reference to his calculation of the accidental development of life as well (so far, I have been unable to find any calculations performed by either noted figure that regard the creation of the universe, only the life therein). If so, he was incorrect in his quotation of the calculated odds, which Hoyle found to be 1/E40000, and Wickramasinghe found to be 1/E20, both of which are grossly larger than my opponent's stated '1 in 10 40,000's.' However, I would have a very hard time believing either of these calculations without having the opportunity to examine them, especially given their slanted nature. However, assuming they are correct, I submit the following syllogism, as possiblejustification of evolution, even in the presence of their calculations:

P1: Every individual point in time, like the frame taken by a camera, is an 'instant.'
P2: An 'instant' is an immeasurably small unit of time, even an undefined one, and is much smaller than a Planck Time (the smallest measurement of time developed).
C: There have been well over Wickramasinghe's ten-quintillion 'instants' necessary for one process of evolution to occur.

I would extend the syllogism to cover Hoyle's rather large circumstances, but I don't feel like deriving the Latin name for E40000. Of course, this syllogism is rather incomplete, given it deals with the theoretical boson to carry time, the chronoton, and further principles of pure theoretical view toward the nature of the universe.

Skepticism Toward Infinity
Now, I have already addressed your skepticism toward the concept of infinity. However, I feel I should address it once more, though I still maintain that you should read the instruction manual before playing with that particular toy. Such skepticism about infinity is associated with a movement in the 1800s called finitism, which maintained that a mathematical object does not exist unless it can be constructed by some operation of natural numbers, in finite steps. This may sound like a rational (pun intended) thought process, but it eliminates certain important facets of calculus, since without infinity, limits would be just a little bit different. Your 'proof' against infinity merely establishes that it is not a finite number.

Further Regarding Biblical Prophecy
If you wish to bring up the issue of prophecies 'fulfilled,' you shall also have to include in consideration the issue of prophecies unfulfilled. Over the years, many people, like many today, have come to the conclusion that the ambiguous words of an ancient compilation of literature (that has been subjected to 'telephone,' or, the process by which a work of literature is interpreted and translated through cultural and historical barriers, to the point that the original message is indistinguishable) are coming to life. However, many of these prophecies and predictions have remained just that, shrouded in the mists of time (most of them do not make sense). The 'Return of the Christ,' and by extent the coming of the 'apocalypse,' has been one of particular fixation. I shall list a few years that have been prominently featured as 'fulfillment years':

1525--Roman Catholic Church ascertains that the offspring of Martin Luther is the 'Antichrist'
~1530--Martin Luther predicts that the "Day of Judgement" is 'Just around the corner'
1533--Anabaptists predict the 'Millenium' would occur, and prepare to build 'New Jerusalem' in Münster, Germany
~1550--Archbishop of York (Anglican church) declares that the end is near
1584--Adam Nachenmoser predicts the last day to occur in 1635
1650-1695--Thomas Brightman, founder of Presbyterianism, predicts the wedding of Jesus, en lieu with Earth's end
1830--Joseph Smith, founder of Mormonism, determines the hour to be nigh
1831--Joseph Smith determines that Missouri is the 'promised land'
1833--Joseph Smith determines that the stars are going to fall from the sky
1844--Baptist sect predicts the 'Second Advent' to occur before March
1874--Watch Tower Society (Jehovah's Witnesses) calculates as the date for the 'Second Coming'
1889--Claas Epp, Jr. predicts the return of Christ for March 8
1891--Claas Epp, Jr. predicts the return of Christ for March 8
~1914--Assemblies of God Church determines that they are on the threshold of Armageddon, and plots end as ~1935
1917--Watch Tower Society predicts that in 1918, God will begin destroying the world
1979--Calvary Chapel founder, Chuck Smith, publishes evidence that Jesus will return before 1981
2000--Millions predict the 'apocalypse'

Now, from this list it is probably pretty obvious that not all interpretations, however vehemently purported, are accurate. That some of them are only means that some of the writers of the books found in the Bible were either semi-competent or lucky. I can make predictions too, but that doesn't constitute evidence of the supernatural. That someone in ancient times was able to do so with highly irregular success (I personally haven't seen any flying white horses, dragons, or gigantic cubes made of gemstones) is simply an indication that someone in ancient times had a passable knowledge of history.

Conclusion
I reiterate, it has been a lovely, if somewhat stunted debate, and I hope you enjoyed it as I have. My opponent raises very good points. I also admire his references to multiple reliable sources, something I have not experienced in others, when debating this topic. Farewell, until next time.

Sources:
http://goo.gl...
http://goo.gl...
http://goo.gl...
http://goo.gl...
http://goo.gl...
A Case Against Accident and Self-Organization, Dean L. Overman
Life: The Science of Biology, Fifth Edition
Deathbeforedishonour

Con

Deathbeforedishonour forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by AngryBlogger 10 months ago
AngryBlogger
glad the winner came out the way it did since the con seemed to have completely plagarized William Craig almost word for word, well especially the contentions.

You ARE NOT WLC.
Posted by Bender75 3 years ago
Bender75
Beliefs can exist...
Posted by Torvald 4 years ago
Torvald
Not to worry, I have an abundance of other things to do. Post your argument whenever is convenient for you.
Posted by Deathbeforedishonour 4 years ago
Deathbeforedishonour
I am sorry for taking longer then I usually do in posting my rounds. I will have it in by tomorrow.
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emospongebob527
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