The Instigator
16kadams
Pro (for)
Losing
17 Points
The Contender
phantom
Con (against)
Winning
31 Points

Resolved: god Probably exists

Do you like this debate?NoYes+4
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 10 votes the winner is...
phantom
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/4/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,822 times Debate No: 24073
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (33)
Votes (10)

 

16kadams

Pro

God - a creator

Probably - 51% or more

I have the BOP

This is for my tournament

No semantics or trolling

P.S. I will lose
phantom

Con



This will be the second time I've debated adams on Gods existence only our positions are completely reversed this time around so this will be interesting.



I do not accept pros definition of God. The fact that many humans would fit the criteria for God using this definition renders it useless. I think defining him just as a supernatural ruler of the universe who created the world would be more proper, but as I don't see any of us making a case of semantics, I do not foresee any future issues on the matter.

I am playing devils advocate.

Good luck to my opponent.
Debate Round No. 1
16kadams

Pro

The KCA

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
2. The universe began to exist. (has a beginning)
3. Therefore, the universe has a cause.

--> Logic the KCA

1. if p is true q is true
2. p is true
3. therefore q is true

If the first two premises follow, it is logical to assume the third is correct, so this arguments conclusion are highly reliying upon the first two to be true. That's why atheists mainly focus on one, as that is the easiest to "disprove". So, assuming 1-2 is correct, there is nothing unsound about this argument. [2]

P1) Everything has a cause

This argument is proven by mere observation. This is basic intuition and a default position of human nature, though this can be easily proven by more then mere impulses. Everything we have witnessed has been caused, by something somewhere. It has a cause. There are countless examples. One example is a factory that makes the computers we sit at today. The computer was created by a machine that made the computer, and caused its existence. The factory was made by workmen and tools. The tools where caused by mining, the mining was caused by people, which where caused by evolution. Which was caused by the big bang, which was caused by........ [fill in the blank, a creator] So as my hint suggests this applies to all things, people, entities, and everything.

Now a common ploy is to either ague quantum fluctuations or nothing exists, and nothing that exists means nothing has been caused. But if nothing existed, the numbers of events happening in past times would be infinite, and anything that "exists" would therefore be infinite itself. If this where true, we would be alive at the time of creation, well we would actually just exist, and everything that "exists" would be living alongside us today. I dont remember seeing any prehistoric creatures today. So this objection is a moot.

P2) The universe has a beginning

The Second Law of Thermodynamics reaffirms my statement here. It argues the universe is not eternal. It states heat is not an eternal unlimited force, as part of the theory. [3] Also, it has been observed the universe has been expanding rapidly since its creation and continues to grow today, as the energy is not unlimited the universe is thus using a supply of energy, and eventually run out. As the universe now will undoubtedly run out of energy, and eventually crunch up,[4]
this shows the universe is not eternal and will eventually end. And everything tends towards entropy. Meaning the universe does in fact have a beginning.

Now a common objection too two (you need to refute 1 or 2 to make 3 invalid) is the universe is eternal. But as stated it violates The Second Law of Thermodynamics, which is a law not a theory take note. "Thermodynamic properties of the universe dictate that, even if the universe did oscillate, an eternal universe could not occur. This is because, the farther back in time one goes, the shorter the time span of oscillations, or rotations. Thus, the universe could not be eternal."[5]

“The effect of entropy production will be to enlarge the cosmic scale, from cycle to cycle. . . . Thus, looking back in time, each cycle generated less entropy, had a smaller cycle time, and had a smaller cycle expansion factor than the cycle that followed it.” [6, 7]

So to conclude:

If the universe and big bang had no cause, we could arguably live in a paradox. So for the universe to exist, without a cause, there would be no beginning therefore time would be also infinite. And there would be infinite time for any and all events to take place. Now this causes a fallacy we all know as begging the question. The question it begs is: if time is infinite, then why is right now actually happening right now? Now lets assume God used his methane and a lighter 100,000,000 years ago to create a big bang, or whenever he so wished to use his methane and fire, to create the universe. Then we can ask why did it happen at a fix time?

Now this is proven by Hilberts hotel, which proves the infinite cannot exist. The paradox goes as follows: a hotel has an infinite amount of rooms, and it is full. Bob decides he wants to go to this hotel. Lady in room one goes to room two. Transvestite in room 2 goes to 3, man in room 3 goes to room 4 etc. But this is a paradox. If all rooms are full, then there is no room for Bob. But there are infinite rooms, so there is always room.

Thus the universe had a cause.

CONCLUSION:

I used the KCA in my case, using its logic:

1. if p is true q is true
2. p is true
3. therefore q is true

The first two are correct, therefore 3 is also. Vote pro. (hope I wasn't bad, I dont really do religion debates often)






[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://www.debate.org...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[5] http://www.skepticalchristian.com...
[6] Duane Dicus, et.al. “Effects of Proton Decay on the Cosmological Future.” Astrophysical Journal 252 (1982)
phantom

Con

I thank pro for his case.





"1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause."




This is a deeply flawed premise, mainly because there is very little to back it up. Furthermore my opponent starts off by committing a fallacy. The KCA posits that the universe came about ex-nihilo (out of nothing). However my opponent only backs up this premise by showing that things come into existence ex-materia. My opponent asserts that this is an observed fact. I however have to very strongly disagree. Pro fails to give a single account of not only things beginning to exist, but things beginning to exist by cause of something else. He only demonstrates how tools, computers and such were made. However we again need to draw a fine line between ex-materia and ex-nihilo. Tools were made from pre-existing material. The metal and wood used to make the object already existed. It was just re-shaped into a different form thus came about ex-materia. If something comes into existence ex-nihilo however than there would be a point in which the matter did exist. Therefore there was nothing, then there was something. Premise one of the Kalam Cosmological Argument posits the universe coming about ex-nihilo and my opponent has only shown examples of things coming about ex-materia. Therefore we can conclude my opponent has brought about zero evidence that things coming about ex-nihilo must be caused despite his claims that this is an observed fact.



My opponent also admittedly appeals to intuition but in order to logically address issues we must look at it solely logically and factually. Taner Edis says himself, "Quantum mechanics is so counter-intuitive, physicists have never been able to come up with a comfortable picture of how it works." Appealing to intuition is a logical fallacy because our intuition can be flawed. Only when we logically justify a claim ignoring our intuition can we view it as sound.



http://atheism.about.com...




Quantum fluctuations



Note, my opponent mentions this but does not negate it.



Now in truth we cannot really observe absolute nothing. But the closest we can come to nothing is empty space. The appearance of "virtual particles" have been observed to come into being spontaneously and stochastically in empty space, meaning there is no external cause and it is impossible to predict when it will happen. Quantum fluctuations are the "temporary appearance of energetic particles out of nothing, as allowed by the Uncertainty Principle. It is synonymous with vacuum fluctuation." Now though the source says "out of nothing", empty space is not literally nothing but the closest to nothing we can get. We have yet to observe anything coming from nothing but lets re-cap on this premise. My opponent supports the premise by showing that things beginning ex-materia have a cause. I show that from the closest we can get to nothing we observe things appearing completely uncaused. Let's weigh that together. The Kalam Cosmological argument asserts that everything that began to exist from nothing has a cause. My opponent brings up examples of things created from material already there. Hmmm, so my opponent is supporting x by showing that we have observed y when really y has no relevance on x. I however show x false by observation to the contrary. I think we can find this premise largely refuted.




http://universe-review.ca...



As Taner Edis says, "Quantum events have a way of just happening, without any cause, as when a radioactive atom decays at a random time. Even the quantum vacuum is not an inert void, but is boiling with quantum fluctuations. In our macroscopic world, we are used to energy conservation, but in the quantum realm this holds only on average. Energy fluctuations out of nothing create short-lived particle-antiparticle pairs, which is why the vacuum is not emptiness but a sea of transient particles. An uncaused beginning, even out of nothing, for spacetime is no great leap of the imagination. "



http://atheism.about.com...




Cause of God/infinite regression of causes




P.1 According to my opponent, everything that begins to exist has a cause.

P.2 According to my opponent infinity is impossible.

P.3 Disregarding infinity, if something exists that something must be caused.

P.4 God is something.

P.5 God requires a cause.



The Kalam Cosmological Argument is a contention that appeals to our intuition. It may seem prima facie sound when looking at its premises but at a deeper look we find it brings up a regression of questions, at least the way my opponent argues it. It asserts that everything that begins to exist has a cause. If everything is finite than everything has a cause. My opponent himself affirms that everything is finite by his own arguments that infinity is impossible (a contention I have no reason to negate). If we assume this logic, it follows that everything that exists has a cause. Notice, one step away from saying everything that begins to exist. Now we get to the problem of circularity and infinite regression. If everything single thing in existence must be caused we are affronted with the paradox of infinite aggression. To demonstrate, if a exists than b caused a and b must then be caused by x and x by y and y by q, and so on. This creates an impossible infinite regression of causes as well as begging the question, what caused God? By my opponents own logic, God is a finite being (by impossibility to the contrary) therefore God must be caused by something, and that something by something, and that something by something else, etc...





"2. The universe began to exist."





I will not negate this point.





"3. Therefore, the universe has a cause."



Premise one is flawed rendering the conclusion negated.




Hidden premise



One noticeable fact about my opponents syllogism is that we could fully accept it and still not be conceding the existence of God. I say this because the conclusion states that the universe has a cause. What it doesn't state is that the cause is God. Sounds like the God of the gaps fallacy to me. My opponent needs to support his argument by showing that if the universe was indeed caused than it was caused by God and not one of the many other possible explanations.
Debate Round No. 2
16kadams

Pro

From what I can see my opponent uses the normal objections to P1, and then a quite interesting starter.

P1) Everything has a cause

We're not concerned with ex-nhilo or ex-materia. This objection is irrelevant, a red herring, and an imagined fallacy by my opponent. On the other hand, it is inexplicible how everything can come from nothing, nothing at all. Nothing cannot create nothing. Nothing is a non intellegent force, and is indeed just a void. The argunment here is more of a logical one, as it is impossible for anything to come from nothing. Nothing just cannot create something. What my opponent is asserting is just that; things coming into the universe uncaused (that is the way to sum it all up). But this neither makes sense nor has any evidence to back it up. After all, do you see animals spawnign because of nothing (do nto mention minecraft). Why would only the universe be able to spawn alone? What scientific or philosophic law does the universe jump over to come out of nothing? How can nothing create something?! Keep in mind that there is LITERALLY no property ab is out nothing that would discriminate against various types of somethings, ex-materia or whatever.

Further, we do not know this as much intuitivley (though that is a factor) so much deductive reasoning. My opponent is trying to argue that ex nihilo nihil fit is not actually true. This is a bare assertion and is not actually true. Further my opponent comits a fallacy himself, ironically. He states intuition CAN be faulty, and makes it seem it is absolute. This is appeal to probability where saying a probable problem is absolute. And my opponents argunment shows I am comitting an informal fallacy too, as something not absolute means it is sometimes not a fallacy. So this is a maybe situation.

Quantum fluctuations?

Lack of eternal cause is not lack of internal cause. Further my opponent is mainly arguing virtual particles and fluctuations are uncaused, thats the sum of it all.

It is important to note my opponent is arguing we have found no cause therefore it is uncaused (that makes no sense by the way). We have to remember science is provisional. What may seem to be an uncaused event is more likely something not obsoerved. We should be therefore not be hasty to say it is "not caused". Uncaused events may be the result of sub-atomic particles. It is important to note the randomness of sub atomic particles. This is not found through mere observation of the large event itself. If the randomness is occuring its at the sub atomic level. So the un observed cause may be something we cannot see [1].

As notes: "the more precisely one property is measured, the less precisely the other can be controlled, determined, or known"[2].

As stated above, this is irrelevant and a red herring as they are uncertian, not uncaused. Uncertianty does not equal uncaused.

My opponent cites many examples of people saying it is uncaused. But these people do nto understand the theory. I cited one of the founders of the theory, he merely stated its cause is unknown, NOT that it was uncaused. Again, uncertianty does not equivocate any type of uncaused. This is a mere misinterpretation of the theory.

What created god?

This is the most common objection. If everything needs a god then what created him etc. If Y created X, and everything needs a cause, then Y needs a cause. This is false, god needen't be created. God was the creator of time. But god lives in a timeless eternity.
"God has no need to have been created, since He exists either outside time (where cause and effect do not operate) or within multiple dimensions of time (such that there is no beginning of God's plane of time). Hence God is eternal, having never been created. Although it is possible that the universe itself is eternal, eliminating the need for its creation, observational evidence contradicts this hypothesis, since the universe began to exist a finite ~13.7 billion years ago. The only possible escape for the atheist is the invention of a kind of super universe, which can never be confirmed experimentally (hence it is metaphysical in nature, and not scientific)"[3].

"God, though, unlike the universe, did not begin to exist. God is eternal. He exists outside of time, and has neither beginning nor end. The theist can therefore admit that uncaused existence is possible in the case of God, without being forced to admit that uncaused existence is possible in the case of the universe. God and the universe are two entirely different sorts of thing."[1]

P2) The universe began to exist

Alright.

CONCLUSION:

My opponent will not negate P2, and this is understandible. But he knows all he needs to do is negate 1 to win the debate. He made a broad side attack, though much of it was futile. All of his argunments where refuted, debunked, or irrelevant. Meaning whilst P2 stands, P1 has been defended. Point being I have proven the universe needs a cause: god. Vote Pro.


Sources:
[1] http://www.existence-of-god.com...
[2] http://www.debate.org...
[3] http://www.godandscience.org...
phantom

Con

I think pro for his response.



"1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause."


I'd like to remind the voters that it is pros burden to provide evidence for this premise. I think you will find he has failed to do so.




Ex-nihilo/ex-materia

Pro displays a somewhat surprising view that the universe did not come about from nothing. I have yet to see a KCA advocate assert that the universe came about ex-materia, but that seems to be what my opponent is stating. He actually very strongly denies that the universe came about ex-nihilo. Well I do find this illogical and not quite sound. In order for something to come about ex-materia that obviously means the matter in which it was made up of already existed. Now if we assert that the universe came about ex-materia that would mean the matter that made up the universe already existed. But wait a minute; that's the same as saying the universe existed prior to its existence, which doesn't really make sense. Now the fact is, the kalam cosmological argument necessarily posits the universe coming about ex-nihilo. I was taken aback that my opponent so strongly denies that the universe could begin ex-nihilo. William Lane Craig himself asserts that the universe came about ex-nihilo. So yeah, my opponent is err..misrepresenting his own argument.



I again want to point out the fact that my opponent has done very little to back up premise one. Showing that computers and tools are caused creations completely falls short in proving the assertion that whatever begins to exist has a cause.



Quantum fluctuations


Firstly my opponent's statement that "lack of eternal cause is not lack of internal cause", is irrelevant if he does not bring up evidence of an internal cause.


My opponent attempts to make my reasoning look like a fallacy. He claims I am saying we have found no cause therefore there is no cause. No, I am not using that logic rather I am supporting quantum fluctuations by the general scientific consensus that quantum fluctuations are uncaused events. More so, evidence from the Hawking-Penrose singularity theorems, which are based off of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, support the view that the universe came about uncaused. "Furthermore, it belongs analytically to the concept of the cosmological singularity that it is not the effect of prior physical events. The definition of a singularity that is employed in the singularity theorems entails that it is impossible to extend the space-time manifold beyond the singularity. The definition in question is based on the concept of inextendible curves, a concept that has been most completely and precisely explicated by B. G. Schmidt (1971). In a space-time manifold there are timelike geodesics (paths of freely falling particles), spacelike geodesics (paths of tachyons), null geodesics (paths of photons), and timelike curves with bounded acceleration (paths along which it is possible for observers to move). If one of these curves terminates after a finite proper length (or finite affine parameter in the case of null geodesics), and it is impossible to extend the space-time manifold beyond that point (for example, because of infinite curvature), then that point, along with all adjacent terminating points, is a singularity. Accordingly, if there is some point p beyond which it is possible to extend the space-time manifold, beyond which geodesics or timelike curves can be extended, then p by definition is not a singularity."


My opponents assertion that the scientists I cited don't understand the theory, is laughable. I cited real scientists whose job it is to know what they are talking about. All my opponent cites is a biased source on creationism and a debate on this website. Moreover my opponent simply has no grounds for this statement. He claims that the founder of the theory asserts that the cause of quantum fluctuations are just unknown. I have looked through my opponents sources and have found nothing mentioning this. But even if that were so, it is irrelevant. The founder of a scientific theory has less knowledge about it than scientists of when the theory has been around for longer. For example, science is always progressing thus more is being found out about scientific theories all the time. When quantum fluctuations were first discovered it would be plausible to believe scientists thought there must be some cause, it just wasn't known, but as time grew on it would be realized that there was actually no cause even if initial discoverers believed there was probably one.
Atkatz, D., and Pagels, H. (1982), "Origin of the Universe as a Quantum Tunneling Event", Physical Review D 25: 2065-2073.
Craig, W. L. (1979), The Kalam Cosmological Argument. New York: Harper and Row.



Cause of God/infinite regression of causes



My opponent brings up the contention that God transcends time. That God was the creator of time. This would be to assert that there was a time in which time did not exist. I will bring up the improbabilities to this and argue that time is a necessary construct of any physical real. That time must exist in existence. Time is a necessary quantity of expression. Constructs such as velocity and speed would be impossible without time. In fact, in order for my opponent to make the claim that God created time he would have to say that before the big-bang, time did not exist. But wait, you can't possibly use the term before if time did not exist then. In fact there are many words you could not use such as then and when and after. It can be established that in order for an event to occur there must be a moment in which it hasn't occurred. As Stephen Hawkins says, "Do we need a God to set it all up so a Big Bang can bang? … Our everyday experience makes us convinced that everything that happens must be caused by something that occurred earlier in time. So it’s natural for us to assume that something—perhaps God—must have caused the universe to come into existence. But when we’re talking about the universe as a whole, that isn’t necessarily so...You can’t get to a time before the big bang, because there was no time before the big bang. We have finally found something that does not have a cause because there was no time for a cause to exist in." Without time everything would occur simultaneously. That makes no sense however. To demonstrate, X is an event in which Y occurs and Z is an event in which Y ends. In a timeless world Y would occur at the very time in which Y ends. That makes no sense for the vast majority of things cannot occur at the same time they end. In any physical realm time must exist because it is a necessary physical construct. If God existed than he must exist within a physical realm, for he is a physical being, thus he cannot have created time.





Now, an objection you might rise is that the general concept of God posits that he created everything thus it would obvious to say he created time. However, this falls short of answering the problem. No-one actually believes God created literally everything, besides himself, for there are many constructs necessary in any realm. Existence for example is neccessary. God did not create existence because existence is obviously necessary in order for him to exist. Action is another necessary construct. God did not create action because the very creation of action is an action thus God would be using his own creation before creating it which would make no sense.


I would also like my opponent to explain how time could not exist for he has not done so.


Hidden premise

It appears my opponent is still not explaining the jump from cause to God. He still needs to show that the cause of the universe must be God.
Debate Round No. 3
16kadams

Pro

P1) Everything has a cause

My BOP is upheld because everything we see in the universe is evidence of it.

Ex-nihilo/ex-materia

My opponent has still failed to show that ex-nihilo is required to fufill the premise. He merely asserts it is required as WLC, a defender of the KCA, beleives it to be required. Ad Authoritum Fallacy. There is no hidden language saying the universe was caused. [...] ex-nihilo. This point is nothing more then a red herring and a different interperetation of the KCA.

“And therefore all things have the same causes, because, without substances, modifications and movements do not exist� -- Aristotle, and [1].

Quantum fluctuations

With this objection my opponent still attempts to pose the argunment of somehting coming without a reason, and his example quantum fluctuations. But this is again illogical. After all, how can nothing create something? Nothing is a non-intellegent force and nothing has that much power; nothing. Nothing has no power whatsoever. It has no resources as well. It cannot create anything, nothing cannot create something. Hence I would like to point out based on this the point stands.

Now as stated there are still many obvious objections to the theory, one being a vaccum (the theory is a quantum flucuation in a vaccum caused our universe) is not actually nothing. This is important as it still proves the poitn we have not yet observed a cause, there still being a possibility of one occuring. A vaccum is: “[A] sea of continually forming and dissolving particles, which borrow energy from the vacuum for their brief existence.�[2]
As stated last round, the cause may be something on the microscopic level. An atom, a particle, the exact things you see in a vacum. As science is provisional, an unobserved cause is being argued as no cause (my opponents case here). As it is extremely hard to observe atoms, the dissolving particles may trigger a chain reaction; therefore quantum fluctuations may be caused contrary to my opponents position.

Now the theory my opponent is supporting is in a vaccum spitting universes (all expanging) an "uncaused" quantum fluctuation formed creating another universe. But based on this theory, the multiple universes being created and all expanding means they will likely collide at one point. A collision may be able to be a creator of the beginning fluctuation. Hence another cause we may not be able to observe.

As we can see there are many internal or external causes for quantum fluctuations, many of which we cannot observe. As science is provisional, and the cause is unobserved, it is deemed uncaused. This is highly faulty and leads us to a lot of doubt about my opponents case.

I would also like to note my opponent relies on another fallacy this round. Ad Authoritum, again. He is arguing scientists say it is uncaused, therefore it is uncaused. This breaks this fallacy and therefore seems the majority of his argunment here irrelevant or fallicious. The fact is they have merely not found a cause, not that it is causeless. It being uncaused is a mere assertion by scientists. I will bring forth the quote from last round, "the more precisely one property is measured, the less precisely the other can be controlled, determined, or known". In other words the theory (the quote was directed towards this specific theory) is an unknown cause, an unobserved one, not a "no" cause. see[3]

As we can see even if we assume these scientists are correct on the assumption[s] of a vaccum, we must also use the uncertianty principle wich refutes quantum theory, meaning this objection is not one that refutes the premise. Also my scientist thing was irrelevant, lol.

Cause of god

As stated this objection actually fails, based on the simple wording of the premise. God has existed eternally. The KCA argues anything that begins to exist has a cause, god never began to exist he always did, therefore this objection still fails. The objection here is groundless, and misinterprets the position.

If there have been an infinite amount of opportunities for X to happen, why did X happen when it did? Why did X happen at all? The ever-stretching boundary of time going far far backwards and left shows that there has been as much an infinite amount of time for X to happen as there has been a lack of a coherent beginning. Natural causes are all governed by laws and are mindless. Natural causes will always happen in specific ways. For example, while we may not know which electron will leave a radioactive molecule. We do know that an electron will leave that radioactive molecule at specific moments, which is why we are able to employ radiometric dating. But with an infinite regress of past events or opportunities, it is inexplicable why mindless natural causes would choose one opportunity over another. HOWEVER, while a conscious cause may have an infinite amount of opportunities to cause the Universe, he is not required to cause the Universe at any of those specific opportunities. And, since he is conscious and has free will, he can choose whichever opportunity he wants! Thus the idea of the beginning of the Universe makes coherent sense in light of theism, and not atheism.

My opponent makes a argument that God could not have created the Universe because he would have to be within time to cause anything. This is an assertion. If this were true, of course, then it would also apply to the Hawking-Penrose model. After all, if the Universe requires time to be caused, then the Universe can not cause itself to come into being because no time existed. Pro's argument leads us to the conclusion that NOTHING could have come into being before time, therefore nothing came into being. But wait, we exist...

"Now, an objection you might rise is that the general concept of God posits that he created everything thus it would obvious to say he created time. However, this falls short of answering the problem. No-one actually believes God created literally everything, besides himself, for there are many constructs necessary in any realm. Existence for example is necessary. God did not create existence because existence is obviously necessary in order for him to exist. Action is another necessary construct. God did not create action because the very creation of action is an action thus God would be using his own creation before creating it which would make no sense."

Just an assertion, a red herring.

Hidden Premise

There is no other cause other then god probable, mere chance is unlikely. And as the resolution states "probably", and mere chance is in my favor, the hidden premise is refuted based on the nature of the resolution.

CONCLUSION

I dont know how well I did, I generally do not do debates like this. So I urge a pro vote, and I cross my fingers.

P1) true
P2) true
C/3: true

vote pro!


[1] http://www.answeringinfidels.com...
[2] http://www.skepticalchristian.com...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
phantom

Con

I thank pro for the debate and the voters for taking the time to read each participants arguments.

.
.
==Ex-nihilo/ex-materia==
.
.
My opponent continues to argue that the universe came about ex-materia. I showed this illogical in the last round which my opponent did not address. In order for something to come about ex-materia that obviously means the matter in which it was made up of already existed.If we posit that the universe came about ex-materia that would mean the matter that made up the universe already existed. But that's the same as saying the universe existed prior to its existence which of course makes no sense. My opponent again fails to respond. I would also like to change my statement that the KCA posits creatio ex-nihilo to the KCA in no way posits creatio ex-materia. Creatio ex-materia is an illogical view of the universes origins. It does not even correlate with the KCA for the KCA says everything that begins to exist. When it says exist it does not in any way mean change form into a new object. That would make no sense. The universe can't have been created from pre-existing material because then it would already exist prior to its beginning! The assertion is absurd. The universe is made up of matter. It is impossible for that matter to exist prior to the universes beginning because then the universe would already exist.
.

.
My opponents defence for premise one is to show how computers and tools are caused creations. He asserts that it is a self-evident observation of life. However, demonstrating that objects being formed from matter that was already there are caused, utterly falls short in showing that the whatever begins to exist has a cause.
.
.
==Quantum fluctuations==
.
Previously my opponent claimed the founder of this theory asserted that there was a cause it was just unknown. I pointed out that none of my opponents sources claimed such a thing. I don't know if my opponent just made it up or heard it somewhere and couldn't find a source to back it up but I would like to take note of his drop this round.
.
My opponent starts off misrepresenting my argument. He asks "how can nothing create something?" I clearly stated from the very beginning that empty space is not nothing but the closest we can get to nothing in this universe. Now if my opponent is using the term nothing while meaning empty space he still fails to refute it. His response could again be assumed a fallacious appeal to intuition. Questions and statements such as "nothing has no power", "Nothing cannot create something", and "Nothing is a non-intelligent force", are just groundless, unscientific and unsupported speculation. As I have already stated scientists themselves claim that "Quantum mechanics is so counter-intuitive, physicists have never been able to come up with a comfortable picture of how it works."
.

.
http://atheism.about.com...
.
My opponent also would also have us think that observing atoms and molecules is a feat scientists have significant difficulty in doing. In a world in which scientists are able to create microscopic robots I think the situation is being misrepresented.
.
http://news.nationalgeographic.com...
.
.
.
My opponent argues that quantum fluctuations do not actually occur from nothing as it is actually a vacuum. This falls short in two ways. Firstly I never once stated they come from nothing. From the initial start of this debate I always asserted that empty space was not nothing but the closest we come to nothing. Therefore it is irrelevant. Secondly I also from the start claimed that it occurred in a vacuum. This does not contradict the evidence. "Quantum events have a way of just happening, without any cause, as when a radioactive atom decays at a random time. Even the quantum vacuum is not an inert void, but is boiling with quantum fluctuations." They are the "temporary appearance of energetic particles out of nothing, as allowed by the Uncertainty Principle. It is synonymous with vacuum fluctuation."
.
.
http://atheism.about.com...
.
"In classical physics (appliable to macroscopic phenomena), empty space-time is called the vacuum. The classical vacuum is utterly featureless. However, in quantum mechanics (appliable to microscopic phenomena), the vacuum is a much more complex entity. It is far from featureless and far from empty. The quantum vacuum is just one particular state of a quantum field (corresponding to some particles). It is the quantum mechanical state in which no field quanta are excited, that is, no particles are present. Hence, it is the "ground state" of the quantum field, the state of minimum energy. The picture [below] illustrates the kind of activities going on in a quantum vacuum. It shows particle pairs appear, lead a brief existence, and then annihilate one another in accordance with the Uncertainty Principle"
.
.
http://universe-review.ca...
.
.
Con attempts to make his own theory about how quantum fluctuations are caused but in doing so makes assumptions about what I am arguing that were never made. He claims that the argument I'm supporting "is in a vaccum spitting universes (all expanging) an "uncaused" quantum fluctuation formed creating another universe." I never made any such claim of quantum fluctuations causing the creation of universes. I really do not know where my opponent is getting this from. Furthermore my opponents reasoning is not really consistent if you look at it. He never shows us what the cause could be but rather mentions it would be a creator. However it really doesn't make any sense to think God would be up there causing random quantum fluctuations to occur in empty space.
.
.
My opponent then moves on to accusing me of appealing to authority. This might bare some weight except that I was merely responding to my opponents unfounded assertions that the people I cited did not know what the theory was about when in reality they were scientists whose job and career it was to know what they were talking about.
.
.
==Cause of God/infinite regression of causes==
.
Just to get everyone back on track, my opponents first response to this was that God created time. Last round I challenged pro with the argument that time was a necessary physical construct and thus time would have to exist with God rather than him creating it. Unfortunately pro mainly ignores me and goes off on his own series of speculations which do not really address what I was saying.
.
.
As I touched on last round, in a timeless world either all events occur simultaneously or no events would occur at all. As this is a true dichotomy all I need to do is show the irregularities of both thoughts to disprove my opponent. All events occurring simultaneously makes no sense. As I said last round, to which my opponent does not reply, X is an event in which Y occurs and Z is an event in which Y ends. In a timeless world Y would occur at the very time in which Y ends. That makes no sense for the vast majority of things cannot occur at the same time they end. Therefore it can be assumed that a world in which all events happen simultaneously can't exist. The second view is easily refuted. If no events occur at all than God would not perform any actions and thus even creating time would be impossible let alone the universe.
.
.

My opponents second and largest paragraph I find lacking in any address to my argument. It seems like my opponent just took the general thought of an essay or article that had to do with time and just posted it here. None of it, or at least most of it, has very little relevance. I will try to present the general gist of what my opponent is saying. What makes me most think that my opponent does not know what he is talking about is himself claiming that time is infite. "The ever-stretching boundary of time going far far backwards and left shows that there has been as much an infinite amount of time for X to happen" This is completely inconsistent with my opponents views that time was created, thus my opponent is not really doing much to defend himself. He also claims that natural causes are mindless which I would have to whole-heartily disagree with. Despite my opponent arguing against a naturalistic view he asserts this casually as if it is evident. However naturalism would assume we are all nature. Thus beings possessing minds are evidence against the statement that all natural causes are mindless. My opponents statement "with an infinite regress of past events or opportunities, it is inexplicable why mindless natural causes would choose one opportunity over another," is also irrelevant as my position does not assume an infinite amount of past events. Perhaps if I refuted premise 2 this statement would have some baring but currently it has no relevance.
.
//if the Universe requires time to be caused, then the Universe can not cause itself to come into being because no time existed. Pro's argument leads us to the conclusion that NOTHING could have come into being before time, therefore nothing came into being.//
.
.
This is easily refuted for uncaused events do not need time to occur they simply occur.
.
.
Pro quotes a large paragraph from my previous round and 'refutes' it simply be saying, "Just an assertion, a red herring." To count that as anything more than a drop would unjust. Pro can't just lazily toss aside an argument by calling it a red herring. He needs to actually address it. Philosophy is all about pure reasoning, thus it does not need evidence to back it up rather than just the logic that it consists of.
.
.
==Hidden premise==
.
My opponent has waited this entire debate to only respond to the contention that there is an unaddressed jump from cause to God in the last round. His only argument for it however is rather grasping. He asserts that mere chance is unlikely and leaves it at that. Ok? How about show exactly what the chances are for a cause other than God? Maybe the chances are actually better. We can't tell until we actually know them! Pro exhibits utter failure to prove that the the cause must be God.
.
.
I again thank my opponent for the debate and the judges for reading it. I hope all voting goes fairly.
Debate Round No. 4
33 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by phantom 4 years ago
phantom
Boss RFD MIG :)
Posted by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
READ FROM TOP TO BOTTOM. I have to apologize for the irregular formatting of my RFD and for any mistakes I have committed in interpreting the arguments of both sides.

Arguments-There were a number of interesting things needed to be expressed; I will critique arguments on the basis of sub-points.

Pro's contention on the cause of the universe would be, across the trajectory of the debate, inconsistent and weakly upheld; Pro contends that, as a weak starting point, that basic intuition and human observation would support the idea of causation but fails to notice that his arguments imply the existence of a "primum movens", a divine agency who is the source of all-being that implicates a creation without base but with cause, as evinced by his failure to provide examples of creation ex-nihlo.
Posted by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
In regards to the sub-point on quantum fluctuations, note that Pro failed to rebut or refer to Con's notion of empty space, whose existence and properties-- "the appearance of 'virtual particles' have been observed to come into being spontaneously and stochastically in empty space, meaning there is no external cause and it is impossible to predict when it will happen"--indicate lack of causation and thus bear in considering such fluctuations which arise accordingly in such a random matter; in Con's own words, Con has actually provided evidence of a contrary phenomenon while Pro has not and further goes to support his notion with the notion of quantum events that occur randomly, "without a cause" in the context of the macroscopic world that soundly demonstrates the notion of "an uncaused beginning".

This is where, in Pro's rebuttal, where his lack of understanding (sorry, Pro) apparently resounds. Pro repeatedly argues, perhaps ignoring Con's sound objection, that nothing cannot "create something up" and even dismisses Con's evocation of the distinction between ex-nihlo and ex-materia as irrelevant (if the universe was caused ex-materia, as Con noted, then that would imply a prior of state of existence and arguably lack of beginning, but a concurrent state); also note that the reference to "nothing" is a non-sequitur as Con posited and proposed the existence of the vacuum, defined in the current physics construct as a state that is particular characterized by set conditions that allow matter and energy to materialize out of nothing, as a near-substitute for nothing. Pro's response, characterizing that "arguing
Posted by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
virtual particles and fluctuations are uncaused", is based on either a distortion or misconstruction of Con's case; Con did not lead a transition from no cause to uncaused by attempted to use consensus (and even supported it by evoking the Hawking-Penrose singularity theorems and so forth.

[The little quibble on the issue of science is interesting, although Pro's point about their lack of understanding the theory is laughable. Pro's point about the provisions of science is true, although its base—that a lack of observation of the microscopic world—was proven untrue, although his specific point does stand uncontested. However, Pro's constant failure to represent Con's arguments correctly, making assumptions and odd statements for Con's arguments-- "a vaccum spitting universes (all expanging) an "uncaused" quantum fluctuation formed creating another universe" destroys his credibility here].

In regards to the cause of God, this is the only argument where I will give Pro the slight favor. Con's evocation of the concept that time must be a physical construct and that, in order to be the universal creator, God would need to exist in the physical realm is overrided by Pro's evocation of the matter that God transcends such boundaries; indeed, it could be argued that Con's arguments that God would be a finite being by virtue of the regression and infinity implied by Pro's arguments can be argued to be flawed: what is the link between the properties of the world and their extension to God? However, Pro's rebuttal was weak, though, and his speculation on the nature of time could easily be overrided by the fact that if that was so, then the "majority of things would not occur at the same time they end" if
Posted by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
events were to happen stimulateously and so forth. A rather short-lived victory, apparently. (I also fail to see how this is an adequate rebuttal to Con's point, but eh....)

[A few more points to comment on: Pro's constant reference to fallacies committed by his opponent becomes a bit amusing, especially when he writes that Co "merely asserts it is required as WLC, a defender of the KCA, beleives it to be required. Ad Authoritum Fallacy. There is no hidden language saying the universe was caused. [...] ex-nihilo. This point is nothing more then a red herring and a different interperetation of the KCA", although the purpose of evoking WLC was to show that the proponents of KCA imply a creation ex-nihlo...

Moreover, it was Pro's burden to demonstrate the existence of such a divine agency by virtue of the universe's causation; Pro's failure to defend this adequately or refute Pro's notions correctly destroy such prospects].

Overall, while this was a rather close debate, Con wins.
Posted by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
Sources-Well, as noted by Con himself, Pro's sources were not on par in regards with his opponent and failed to substantiate or even correlate with his statements.
Posted by THEBOMB 4 years ago
THEBOMB
Really historygenius, you're voting on sources for a philosophy debate....
Posted by THEBOMB 4 years ago
THEBOMB
Overall, I liked the debate.
Posted by THEBOMB 4 years ago
THEBOMB
Pro's case starts out with the rather overused Kalam Cosmological Argument. (Everything which has a beginning has a cause, etc.) The entire debate was centered around the first premise, everything which begins to exists has a cause, the main objections to this premise were Quantum Flucuations (something exists WITHOUT a cause) and ex-nihlo versus ex-materia creation. I feel Pro adequately debunked the "Cause of God" problem and I really hate this challenge anyway...

So, the ex-nihlo problem. Con asserts that because the universe is made out of "things," these "things" must have been created at some point. Asserting that the Kalam Cosmological Argument backs up the ex-materia argument is illogical, because that asserts these materials are in existence and have never existed. As Con pointed out, this would merely be the universe, in another form, thus, the universe has always existed, just in different forms. Pro did nothing to debunk this major challenge. Thus, on this alone I can give Con the win.

Now for the Quantom Fluctuations (QF) problem, basically how this went was Pro accusing Con of some fallacy, Con showing how it was not a fallacy, and on and on it went. They both brought up some interesting points on Quantom Mechanics and the such, but, in the end, Con relied more on proven scientific data, while Pro was just making...conjecture on what could possibly be the cause of the QFs. So, in the end, Con won this point.
Posted by phantom 4 years ago
phantom
"Really though, if it weren't for that last concession, I'd say you basically had this thing won."

Well I didn't concede, because it would absurd of me to say everything natural has a mind. So...
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 4 years ago
RoyLatham
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: "Everything has a cause." is a religious assertion, not a scientific fact. Con noted observed exceptions.
Vote Placed by Nur-Ab-Sal 4 years ago
Nur-Ab-Sal
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Revote: Con proved the Universe needed to come about ex-nihilo (particularly in the last round), and showed how Pro's ex-materia assertion was incorrect. Pro won the quantum fluctuations point, because he explained how science's progress hasn't explained it yet (I disagree), Con's response included the vacuum, which Pro showed needed to exist for the fluctuations to occur. Pro never explained the hidden premise...overall, arguments to Con.
Vote Placed by Man-is-good 4 years ago
Man-is-good
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Explanation in the comments. Moreover, although this debate was an odd marriage of philosophy, physics/general science, and so forth, it was enjoyable to read.:)
Vote Placed by KingTyler18 4 years ago
KingTyler18
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Content and resources were better
Vote Placed by socialpinko 4 years ago
socialpinko
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Countering iholland95.
Vote Placed by iholland95 4 years ago
iholland95
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Because Pro had more convincing arguments
Vote Placed by 1Historygenius 4 years ago
1Historygenius
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: I believe Pro had better sources. He also fulfilled his KCA and BOP. He was able to successfully defend P1 and there was no argument for P2. The quantum fluctuation and gods creation objection was debunked.
Vote Placed by THEBOMB 4 years ago
THEBOMB
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Okay, first, I'm countering TheOrators VB, simply saying "Pro was better" is not a valid RFD. The rest of my RFD is in the comments.
Vote Placed by TheOrator 4 years ago
TheOrator
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Even though I agree with the con in this case, Pro did an excellent job in winning the round. I didn't give him the sources because I only give that if one side gives one or two sources when another side gives several. Even though Pro gave many more sources, con provided enough to negate the vote.
Vote Placed by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
16kadamsphantomTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:32 
Reasons for voting decision: This was a very in depth debate, and I was going to give an in depth RFD. However, in the last round Con essentially conceded "He also claims that natural causes are mindless which I would have to whole-heartily disagree with". Here Con argues that natural causes aren't mindless, thus the cause of the Universe could have been conscious. But this is what the KCA sets out to prove anyway! However, Con's argument for uncaused quantum fluctations was really well done, so I must give him a point.