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That the Existence of a Creator is More Logical

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/14/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,550 times Debate No: 105862
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (19)
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Salve DrCereal,

I just read through your incomplete debate with Vinnie_Cross_Briet, and I was disappointed to see it end how it did. If you're up for it--which it seems you are, as you've issued three debate challenges on the existence of God--I'd like to offer my commentary on your previous debate, and pick up the conversation where you left it with Vinnie.


In round one: I'd like to adjust the scope and definitions of the previous debate: DrCereal v. Vinnie_Cross_Briet, "A Creator's Existence is Apparent" [1]. You may take this round to accept, and adjust the rules however you like.
In round two: I will offer my commentary of the previous debate, and formulate what I think is the best form of the argument Vinnie was trying to make.
Thenceforth, a freeform debate. This is of course a very important question to solve, and I"m sure we can keep this more amiable than the previous debate.
I will assume the burden of proof such as you prefer, but my resolution shall not be "Given the philosophical thought and empirical evidence available to us within the natural universe, we can safely conclude that a creator's existence is apparent." A few words on why this seems like an unfitting resolution: the first clause is unnecessary, of course we will be basing any conclusion on reason and evidence; the second clause is simply a silly resolution I think, that the existence is apparent. If it were apparent, then it would be apparent to everyone, and there would be no cause for debate on the subject.
Instead, a more proper resolution I think, is that it is more reasonable to think that there is a creator, than to think that there is not.
As for the definition of creator: I don"t think there is any need to include personality in the entity of the creator, qua creator. Also, while it may be necessary per the argument that the creator must have always existed, it is not part of his definition I think, but a quality; it also does not imply that he is "eternal and everlasting."
Therefore, I think the better definition we arrive at is that a creator is a being of intelligence, which is the first cause of the material world.
I hope you will agree to engage, and finish civilly what was started. If after a period of ten days, DrCereal has not accepted, message me if you"d like to assume his role as Con.
I look forward to our dialogue!



Salve. (I find it slightly ironic that I had just started learning Latin recently.)

I too am very disappointed in how that debate turned out, and though I had placed the blame on Vinnie, I'm afraid to say that I had acted childish in that debate. I have learned a little maturity since then, and I hope that we can have a good conversation in this debate. I accept the rules and definitions as provided.
Debate Round No. 1


I look forward to a fun and productive debate.

The main points of contention in the previous debate were, without a doubt, concerning causality, the complexity of natural systems, and the role of mathematics in modeling the universe. Before addressing these three points directly, however, it is necessary to establish the first principle.

Vinnie_Cross_Briet started in the right place: saying that in order for there to be a creator, the universe must have a point at which it is properly said to have come into existence. This claim is widely accepted by the scientific community, with the big-bang theory being the most popular model of how exactly that genesis took place. You did not take issue with the universe having a definite beginning in the previous debate, but in case anyone should have reservations about this, a few words. Some speculate about a material existence before the big-bang, but even that existence itself would have to have had a beginning. Because the big-bang is the first cosmic occurrence, any prior existence would necessarily have to have existed in a constant state, either in motion or at rest. The big-bang occurs as a result of all the universe' mass and energy coinciding at a point, which means that any prior material or energetic existence would have to exist at a distance. Therefore the material would have had to been in motion, to traverse distance and arrive at a point. It could not, however, have existed in a state of constant motion, according to the nature of motion over an infinite duration. The things moving towards a single point must have velocity, and cannot possibly have a velocity greater than the speed of light. As velocity is equal to distance divided by time, and our time is infinite, the only way that the limit of our distance divided by time, that is, velocity, as the time approaches infinity can not be equal to zero, is if the distance is also infinite. So, as the things must have some velocity, the distance must be infinite. This poses an impossibility, however: the things must cross the infinite distance in order to all arrive at the same point, however an infinite distance necessarily has no boundaries, and to cross a distance is to go from one boundary to the other, therefore an infinite distance by definition cannot be crossed. It is for this reason, that the universe must have had a true origin, and cannot have existed for an infinite amount of time.

With that established, I'll comment on your three contentions with Vinnie.

Firstly, Vinnie claimed that "Everything that begins to exists has a cause," which I also hold to be true. You responded by asking "Why should we prefer your axiom, 'Everything that begins to exists has a cause', to its inverse, 'Everything that begins to exist need not have a cause?'" Vinnie replied that this is an indisputable observation of nature, which you did not disagree with. You instead disputed the claim that the universe as a whole acts in accordance with the laws of nature. This is where I will take up the dispute. There seems to me really no way to posit that the universe as a whole acts in a way contrary to the individual objects within the universe, simply because there is no real distinction. When one says "the universe," it is the same as saying "nature." The Latin "universus" simply means "combined into one whole." The universe is only the collection of natural things, considered as one whole. I don't think there is another logical way to view it. Therefore one must say that the universe as a whole abides by physic laws, because it is the collection of natural objects, all of which abide by the laws. Therefore, the universe in its first state, which is to say, the first natural object/objects in the collection, must have had an external cause. And as the universe is the collection of natural things, that is, things of material, time and motion, anything external to it must be immaterial, extratemporal, and unchanging. These are the most basic qualities of the creator.

You did bring up an objection to this idea: "If we are to believe that the universe, the container of natural objects, behaves like natural objects, then why should we not also believe that a creator would also behave the same way as natural objects," but I think this definitely has been resolved, in light of the fact that the universe is nothing more than natural objects, and that the cause of the natural objects must be external to those things, and therefore outside the physic laws. For these reasons, the existence of an external first cause is not only more logical, but logically necessary.

The resolution, however, is not quite reached, as nothing has been said to necessitate the intelligent nature of the first cause. This brings us to your second contention with Vinnie.

Secondly, Vinnie posited that a design inherently requires a designer, and presented three of what he took to be examples of design in nature. You at no point denied that a thing's being designed does in fact imply a designer, instead you contended with his examples of design. The contention progressed to the point where Vinnie was insisting that complexity of a system is what implies design, and therefore designer, while you were asking what it is exactly about complexity that implies design. I think this is not quite the right direction to go when demonstrating design in nature. The essence of design is function, not complexity. Something is called "designed," in virtue of the parts all functioning harmoniously for the sake of some end. I think this is what Vinnie was getting at with his first two examples: the apple tree and the body. The body is the most clear example. Each organ within the body has a unique function, producing a specific effect. The effects of all the organs work harmoniously in the system of the body, to produce the aggregate effect of self-preservation. The idea then, is that only a being of intelligence can employ things as parts of a system, which were not previously harmonious. Simply put, the rational animal is the only natural object capable of producing systems and processes, from inharmonious components; therefore, any system formed independently of man must be the effect of some external intelligence. The whole of the ecosystem, and even the celestial spheres, is a system producing the aggregate effect of life, and independent of human action, so therefore must be the effect of some intelligence external to the universe, as man is the only intelligent inhabitant. This is what necessitates that the previously mentioned immaterial, extratemporal, and unchanging first cause is also intelligent.

Thus, these reasons sufficiently arrive at my resolution that the existence of an intelligent first cause of the material world is more logical than not; but in addition to that, I say that they absolutely necessitate it.

The third contention concerning Mathematics is very worth-mentioning however, and very much related. Whether Mathematics are properly called "invented," or "discovered" is really inconsequential, because the thing that Mathematics describes, pattern, can in no way be considered projected on the universe. Certain natural phenomena can be described in Mathematic terms because a pattern inherently exists in the occurrences. The reason certain phenomena do not conform to certain expressions is because the pattern modeled by the expression simply does not exist in the phenomenon. What exactly pattern implies about intelligence, I'm not certain. One could argue, perhaps, that pattern is a form of harmony, and therefore requires intelligence, but I am not sure whether that's correct. Regardless however, it is not necessary to the argument.

I believe my resolution to have been definitely reached, by resolving the first two contentions of your prior debate. I hope you will find my interpretations of said contentions to be correct.



For the sake of this debate, I will assume that by "logical", you in fact mean both logically sound and valid, viz. that the conclusion logically follows from the premises and the premises can also be demonstrated as true - either through reason or observation.


I. The Cosmological Argument
My only problem with this argument still comes from Vinnie's first premise, though in this debate I will not go on this silly adventure about "why should we prefer the axiom to it's negation". Instead, I will simply ask for your reasoning that makes the premise true - a plain requisite for the resolution to be affirmed. What examples do you and Vinnie refer to when talking about things coming into existence? What have we observed coming into existence, and what have we found to be their causes?

You bring up another point against one of my contentions, specifically that "the cause of the natural objects must be external to those things" (or in the earlier statement "[the original state of the universe] must have had an external cause"). Not only have you and Vinnie claimed that things that begin to exist have causes for doing so, but you are also willing to make the claim that those causes are external to the things themselves. Again - I must inquire - what example(s) demonstrates this claim as being true?

Lastly, after you manage to produce satisfactory answers to the questions I have provided, there is still the matter regarding the nature of this cause that must be adequately discussed. You and Vinnie contend that this cause must clearly be intelligent, but is there truly a logical reason that would suggest the cause must be intelligent?

II. The Design Argument
Firstly, I want to point out that you must tread carefully when stating that systems have functions because the word "function" can imply a design. I don't believe this is what you were intending, but it seems that your argument is begging the question. [1] You describe systems has having functions and then use these systems as examples of "design". You assume they're designed to prove that they're designed. (Again, I don't believe this is what you meant, but it does appear to be so.)

Later in your argument, you claim that "even the celestial spheres" seem to work at the end of producing life. It must be pointed out that this is an illusory correlation. [2] Given the millions of solar systems that operate in a similar way but are unfit to harbor life, there is no reason to suggest that our celestial bodies were specifically designed to produce life. The correlation you have "found" is merely accidental.

Furthermore, there is no reason to assume that things with apparent "functions" are "designed" by an intelligent entity. You gave the example of the human body striving to reach the ends of self preservation, but this is an example of something which did not come about from the means of an intelligent entity. The human body evolved in accordance with natural rules in order to self-preserve and replicate. This process continued for the sake that it could and by natural laws did. You and Vinnie claim that you need an intelligent designer for something to strive for some end, but the example of the human body clearly demonstrates that simple rules are adequate for systems (and consequently "functions") to form.

Though I believe I responded to the main points you gave in your interpretation of the design argument, I think I need to ask for you to elaborate more fully. I don't quite understand the structure of this particular argument, and it would be helpful if you could elucidate it to me so I can completely understand what you're attempting to say.

(In their current states, the Cosmological Argument is sound but has not been demonstrated to be valid, and the Design Argument is not sound.)
For either argument to have any merit, it is required of Pro to answer the questions I have provided in my rebuttal
s and respond to the points I have just raised. As the debate is still young, Pro has not adequately affirmed the resolution. I wait excitedly for Pro's response.

Personal Remarks:
I always feel like I'm missing something when I post a response so if there is something missing, please simply point it out. My deep apologies for such a late and rushed response. I had finals this week so I was frequently too distracted and tired to work on this response; I hope you can forgive my transgression.

[1] -
[2] -
Debate Round No. 2


1a. In response to "What have we observed coming into existence, and what have we found to be their causes?"

The universe is composed of two parts: the animate, and the inanimate. Only individual things can properly be said to come into existence. Individuality, however, while most clear in the most sophisticated animals, is decreasingly clear in more basic life-forms, and is most ambiguous in the inanimate. If one should change the matter or form of a lifeless object, is a new object created? The answer to this question is not immediately apparent. Concerning animals however, it is more clear; each animal is a singularity, with a consciousness and animation, which comes into being at a specific point in time. At whatever point an animal does come into existence"either at conception, at birth, or at sometime in between"it does so as an effect, the cause of which is the unification of the progenitors, or in some cases, the reproductive faculties of a single progenitor. Therefore, there is clear account of the creation and cause of the one part of the universe, the animate.

Account for the other part, is in one sense more important, as the inanimate part of the universe is prior in time, and therefore is the part which we are concerned with when seeking account for the creation and cause of the universe as a whole, but is definitely more difficult. We must remember that creation is only a kind of change. Change is when a thing ceases to be how it was in someway, and becomes otherwise; it can be divided in these species: creation, destruction, change of quality, change of quantity, and change of place. In nature, it is clear that always a thing undergoes change by some cause, to produce an effect. In the morning, the sun rises, which causes the darkness to undergo change, becoming light. This is most clearly an example of alteration, as the place changes from being unlit to being lit; one could also argue, however, that this is an example of the creation of light, out of no light, but this is a bit confusing, as the individuality of inanimate objects is still a bit unclear. What is clear however, is that all change"excluding creation for now"occurs as the result of some cause. A body does not change from being at rest to being in motion by any reason but by being acted upon. If you think otherwise, the burden of proof is squarely upon your shoulders.

One way to resolve the remaining vagueness of creation is to say that concerning the difference between creation and other kinds of change, the individual is only important to living things. That is to say, if a man should change in size, he is still the same man, but if a rock should change in size, it becomes a different rock. If a chair should be moved across the room, it undergoes change in position; the result is that there was a chair over here, which ceased to be, and now there has been created a chair over there. If a house should change colors, a new house has been created. Therefore, any kind of change in non-living things is creation, and all change in nature is seen to have a cause, so all inanimate objects are given account for creation and cause.

Therefore, I have given example of things animate and inanimate observed coming into existence with clear causes. If you think there to be anything which to the contrary comes into existence clearly without cause, again, the burden of proof is upon you.

1b. In response to "that those causes are external to the things themselves...what example(s) demonstrates this claim as being true?"

This is quite simple I think, and hardly requires example, but instead logic. The cause is necessarily prior to the effect, and a thing cannot be prior to itself. Therefore, if a thing comes into existence, it must do so as the effect of something outside itself. A child that is born requires a parent which is external and before it, and a ball that begins to roll requires a force that is external and before it's rolling.

These are, I think, adequate answers to your questions concerning the first portion, and I hope you will find them satisfactory. The answer to whether there is "truly a logical reason that would suggest the cause must be intelligent" is of course the thesis of the second part, concerning design, and so I intend to address it there.

2a. In defense of the "Design Argument."

I can see how because of my previous use of "function," and "design," I could be understood as begging the question. When I called something "designed," I did mean explicitly that "the parts all function harmoniously for the sake of some end," and while I think it is nowhere in the nature of non-intelligent things to harmonize things, I think you were right to point out, that there are two ways in which parts can work harmoniously as the cause of an effect: either accidentally or intentionally. If one should witness a rock fall from some height, there is no way, simply by observing the fall, to know whether it's falling is the intentional effect of some cause, or the accidental effect. With this in mind, I will employ a simpler argument.

The human body is a harmonized system acting for the sake of an effect, self-preservation. You are right, that the body was formed by means of natural process, a change. Every change is caused by another thing, which either is itself passively in motion on account of something else, or because it is an animal, and therefore has the power of action, to change itself. Every action is is done intentionally for the sake of some effect, and may cause that intended effect, or may cause some other accidental effect. Therefore, in order to say that all inanimate effects are caused accidentally, you have to either say that everything is changing on account of something else, or that the active thing caused the effect accidentally. We established in the beginning, however, that there must have been an uncaused cause. By virtue of it's being uncaused, this would necessarily cause its effect actively, and therefore intentionally. Therefore at the very least, the first cause must be intelligent insofar as is necessary to intend an effect. It is possible I suppose that the effects caused by the first effect of the first cause could be accidental, but some intellect is required for intention.

I think the Cosmological argument is now fully sound and valid, I'm interested to hear what you think about that.
The second argument I know leaves some explaining to be desired, but I think there is some logic there, and am willing to expound.



I. The Cosmological Argument
Ia. "Existence"
There appears to be two different types of existence that have been mentioned when discussing the Cosmological Argument: the existence of objects themselves and the existence of forms of objects. These two types of existence are different because the latter requires a prior and similar form to exist before it (This type of existence can be nicely described as the process of change, the existence of a modified form from another.) while the former requires nothing of the sort. Since these two types of existence are clearly different and the current argument for the first premise uses inductive reasoning, we can not equivocate them as being the same and doing so would be a fallacy of equivocation. [1]

In the first premise of the Cosmological Argument, we are talking about the former type of existence, but you have given examples of the latter type. The example of the existence of animate objects beginning can be stated as the assembly of atoms through the mother into a baby. This is clearly not matter coming into existence in the way intended by the first premise, but it is simply an organization of disorganized matter in the form of food and water into an organized creature, a baby; the disorganized matter changed into a baby, viz. it changed forms. The examples you gave for inanimate objects are also examples of changes in forms.

Since you have provided examples of different forms and not actual objects coming into existence, I can't say that you have yet adequately validated the Cosmological Argument's first premise. To validate the first premise, you must either give appropriate examples or valid reasoning. (I'm mentioning reasoning here becuse you are not at all bound to an inductive argument to support the first premise.)

Ib. The Externality of Causes of Change
If the second premise of your argument is only talking about objects or their forms exclusively, then it is correct. Though in the second premise, we must be careful not to confuse the form of an object with the object itself. [a1] The example I'm thinking of that really highlights the potential problems with this argument is atomic decay. An unstable atom does not emit an alpha or beta particle because of some outside force but because it has to by it's own behavior; this means that the atom changes because of its own and internal properties not an external cause. The existence of a new form begins because of an internal property of the object.

If the universe's singularity ever changed forms, then we must keep in mind that it could have done so because of its own behavior - like the unstable atom. If you wish to assert with any certainty that it did otherwise, you will need a better argument.

II. The Design Argument
IIa. The Core Syllogism

In the second entry of my appendix, I have rewritten your argument as a syllogism because I was having difficulties attempting to understand it. Please do point out any flaws in it or the critique I will give here. (I'm almost completely certain that my representation of your argument is flawed.)

The argument as I understand it is simply a non sequitur because you don't arrive at the conclusion in line 6 from any of the premises. [a2] [2] Could you please more clearly explain this argument?

IIb. "We established in the beginning, however, that there must have been an uncaused cause."
I genuinely don't remember doing so. If it's simply escaping me and I can't find it, could you quote me agreeing to this? Could you also refer me to your support of this statement?

If nothing is found (and my brief search didn't reveal anything), then could you simply explain in the next round?

With the problems mentioned in my rebuttal 'Ia', the cosmological argument has not yet been validated, and I still do not understand what Pro intends to say with the Design Argument (and currently stands as unsound). As of this point in the debate, the resolution has yet to be affirmed.

a1, Externality of Causes Syllogism:
1. The cause is necessarily prior to the effect.
2. A thing cannot be prior to itself.
3. Therefore, a thing can not be it's own cause.

a2, Design Argument Syllogism:
1. Every change is caused by another.
2. This cause could have been changed either accidentally or intentionally.
3. Every action is done intentionally which may cause the intended effect or another accidental effect.
4. In order to say that all effects are accidental, it must be admitted that those effects must be caused and that any animate beings must only cause accidental effects.
5. There is an uncaused cause.
6. The effects of this uncaused cause must be intentional. (?)
7. This uncaused cause therefore displays intelligence (even if limited).

[1] -
[2] -
Debate Round No. 3


1a. I think your assessment of the first premise is incorrect. By no means can an individual animal be called simply the formal rearrangement of inanimate matter, because the properties are entirely contrary. Of course, an animal's coming into existence is "clearly not matter coming into existence," but this is not at all what is "intended by the first premise." It is known and has been stated here, that the quantity of matter in the universe is constant, and so there is no natural example of matter coming into existence. It cannot be ignored, however, that an animal's coming into existence is more than formal change. The properties of an animal are fundamentally different than a non-living form, considering growth, locomotion, and perception. So the generation of a living thing must necessarily be considered an instance of "actual objects coming into existence," whence that thing did not exist at all. The matter did exist, but in an entirely different essence. To say that an animal is simply another form of the matter that pre-existed it is to say that an inanimate is essentially the same as the animate, which is clearly folly.

Concerning the inanimate things, however, you are right, that the only real change seems to be formal. This result of this though, because everything at one point was united in one material object, is that there is no difference in existence between all material things that exist in the universe, which to common sense seems absurd. So in order to preserve at all the individuality in substance of different things in the universe, one has to consider formal change as creation. That was the essence of my argument, but for the sake of conversation, I can operate also under the conditions in which you said you'd agree with the argument.

If the argument is only concerned with formal change, it still proves that every observed change has an external cause. I think this is even true in the example you've brought up of the atom. Atoms come in dichotomy, between the stable and the unstable. It's true, that unstable atoms undergo change, and they do so by an internal property, but that internal property is itself the effect of the atom's genesis. The number and variety of sub-atomic particles that happen to become involved in the atom at the time of it's formation directly cause the internal property which causes the change. Those particles were external, and their cause--however far removed--the big bang, was the most materially external. In this way, the cause of the cause is external, and the cause of the cause of the effect is definitely properly also called the cause of the effect. This is the way with many objects, that the external cause might be separated by another cause.

So then, I don't think your atom example has proved anything at all. And I think you should remember, that I presented an argument for why the universe must have had a true coming into existence, rather than simply a change in form. If this is true, and what you're claiming, that in nature there is no true coming into existence, but only change in form, is also true, then the necessary origin of the universe is entirely unnatural. This is another inference to the extranatural first cause of the universe.

2a. This is the proper version of the syllogism I think.

1. Every change has an external cause.
2. Every action is done intentionally, but may cause an intended or accidental effect, due to unforeseen causes.
3. To say that every effect is accidental, is to say that everything is passively occurring, or that any action done was done accidentally.
4. There is an uncaused cause
5. Being uncaused, the first cause must cause it's effect actively, rather than passively.
6. The first effect is intended, or accidental.
7. There are no other causes contemporary with the first cause, and therefore no unforeseen causes.
8. The first effect was intended.
9. This uncaused cause therefore displays intelligence (even if limited)

2b. This was just the result of my arguing that the universe has a true beginning, which you did not object to, and what we're still contestng, that everything has an external cause.

I do think I've suggested solutions to your contensions.


I. The Beginning of the Universe
This argument appears to be based on the assumption that "that any prior material or energetic existence would have to exist at a distance". For this argument to be valid, it would appear that this premise needs to be valid. To begin my examination of this premise, I must inquire: What prior material and energy are you talking about in this premise? and What is this material and energy "at a distance" from?

I'm sorry that I'm responding to this argument so late in the debate because I had thought I already did. It appears I have not done so so I will ask these questions now. (I implore you to be thorough in your response due to the lack of another chance.)

II. The Cosmological Argument
IIa. "Object" and "Form"
To clear up any ambiguity in our discussion, I will clearly define what I mean by "objects" and "forms". The first and easiest term to explain is the term "form". My "form" is equivalent to your "object". When I talk of an animate "form", you would say an animate "object". Lastly, my "object" is equivalent to "natural object" or "matter". I will continue to use these terms in my rebuttals because it's convenient, but keep these definitions in mind.

(So then - e.g., when I say you are falsely equivocating objects and forms, I mean you are falsely equivocating matter and objects.)

IIb. Interpretation of the First Premise
The first premise says that "everything that begins to exist has a cause". I assumed this meant "objects that begin to exist have causes" because if it did not mean this, then the Cosmological Argument is committing another fallacy. It would be inducing that the existence of the universe (i.e. all matter, energy, time, etc.) must have had a cause because forms that begin to exist have causes; this is a fallacy of hasty generalization. [1] Though it is true that we have observed that forms have causes for their existences, we can not immediately say that the same is true for all objects as well.

I contend that my interpretation of the Cosmological Argument is therefore correct because if it weren't, it would be fallacious by design. Both of us wish to discuss the strongest forms of the arguments concerning a creator so I think my interpretation is appropriate.

IIc. "Existence"
As I said in the last round, the examples you gave to support the first premise are examples of forms and not objects. (Remember my definitions.) You even admit that: "Of course, an animal's coming into existence is 'clearly not matter coming into existence' ... " You then go on to assert that matter wasn't the subject of the first premise. My objection to this claim is given in my rebuttal "IIb".

Regarding this point, I see a dichotomy:
1.) we assume that the first premise is talking about forms (and objects), or
2.) we assume that the first premise is only talking about objects.
(The "3rd" case being that the premise is talking about both objects and forms would be subject to the same criticism mentioned in "IIb".)

If 1 is the case, then the premise commits a hasty generalization. If 2 is the case, then the examples you have provided are still not adequate enough to validate the premise (for using the examples would be unintentionally committing a fallacy of equivocation - something mentioned in the prior round). Of either of these cases, I think 2 has more chances to succeed (as it is sound) so I encourage you to pursue different means of validating it in the last round.

IId. The Externality of Causes of Change
You contend that since the cause of the internal property of the atom was external, we must then say that - ultimately - the cause of the emission of an alpha or beta particle must also be external. This would be true under ordinary circumstances, but I think we can both agree that we're discussing an extraordinary topic.

You are contending that the original cause was uncaused and that that cause was external. Your proof for the externality of the causes of change - as in the case of the atom - relies on there being a cause for an internal property. Do you see the problem? If you are to claim that there is an "uncaused cause" (specifically one related to change) of the universe, then you must also admit that that cause may be an internal property of the universe. Ergo, if the universe were to change states, then we can not assume that the cause was external to it but that it could be either internal or external.

I do not at all concede that there is an "uncaused cause", but if there was, then it defeats the proposition that changes in form can not be the effect of a purely internal property of an object (in this case, the singularity).

III. The Design Argument
IIIa. Line 2 of the Syllogism [a1]
You specify in this line of the syllogism that every "action" is done intentionally and may cause accidental effects "due to unforeseen causes". Let it be noted that this premise is talking about action rather than causation.

If you are going to contend that the premise is talking about causation, then it is blatantly untrue. We know that there are causes that are not intended. E.g., space-time exists, yet it is not space-time's "intention" to allow warps in space which create the effect known as gravity. The effect of gravity is accidentally caused by the existence of space-time because space-time is not intelligent and therefore can not have intention.

IIIb. Line 5 of the Syllogism [a2]
I must inquire to what this premise means. What is the distinction between "active" and "passive" causation? and Why is this first cause's effects necessarily "active"?

IIIc. Line 7 of the Syllogism [a3]
I assume that this premise works in conjunction with the second to produce the next line (line 8) in the syllogism, i.e. "The first effect was intended." As I said in "IIIa", the second premise is concerned with actions not all causes. Therefore, this line in the syllogism implicitly assumes that the first effect was an "action". This means that, since the conclusion of the syllogism in line 8 is that the first effect was intended, the entire syllogism merely begs the question. It implicitly assumes that the first effect was an "action" to demonstrate that the first effect was intended.

It has still not been demonstrated that this first effect was an "action". For this argument to be validated, you must demonstrate how the first effect was an action.

The Cosmological Argument at this time in the debate has yet to be properly validated, and the Design Argument has been demonstrated as being unsound. Because of these issues, it has not yet been demonstrated that their was a necessary, "external" cause to the existence of the universe, and it has not yet been demonstrated that this cause was in any way intelligent.

The resolution has yet to be affirmed.

a1, Line 2 of the Design Argument Syllogism:
"2. Every action is done intentionally, but may cause an intended or accidental effect, due to unforeseen causes."

a2, Line 5 of the " " ":

"5. Being uncaused, the first cause must cause it's effect actively, rather than passively."

a3, Line 7 of the " " ":
"7. There are no other causes contemporary with the first cause, and therefore no unforeseen causes."

[1] -
Debate Round No. 4


Concerning the origin of the universe, your questions are already addressed in the argument. The matter and energy being discussed is that which some may allege to exist before the big bang, and the distance is the which exists between the matter and the singularity of the big bang. The argument and it's followings have not been objected to.

To be honest, I found your qualified definitions a bit strange, they seem to be skirting around my argument. Undeniably, the creation of a new animal is the creation of a new essence, not simply new form. It is of course, as said multiple times by both of us at this point, not creation of matter. The creation of the universe, which is the only creation of matter, is not observed anywhere in the natural phenomena, is still a kind of change, and so I am arguing that it is logical to think that it behaves in the same way that all observed change does, namely as the effect of an external cause. I think your dichotomy and distinction are irrelevant.

Concerning the uncaused cause, the internal property is in the cause which is outside the universe, so no, I don't quite see the problem.

Concerning the second line of the syllogism, I'd ask you to review my argument more carefully. I clearly stated that causation is either active or passive, and the principle of intention only applies to the active. Space-time is a passive existence. About line five, again review the argument.

As we go into the final round, I'd ask you to review the arguments a little more carefully, and present a full assessment.


I. The Beginning of the Universe
Ultimately, the original argument - given your explanation of prior matter and energy - proves the necessity of the Big Bang (and the consequential singularity) being the origin of matter and energy. I wouldn't necessarily construe your argument as being the same as a proof for a necessary cause for the singularity (or that that cause is "uncaused").

Apologies for this rebuttal being brief and somewhat meek in its attempt.

II. Cosmological Argument
It appears that our main disagreement with this argument lies in the definitions we use to expound our thoughts. My "form" can in a way be descibed as an "essence". A form is something which can have "individuality" and is something that is defined by the properties it has.

I maintain that Pro's validation for this argument is still a hasty generalization. [1]

III. The Design Argument
In round 3, it does seem like Pro supports line 2 with the statement (A statement that wasn't add to the more explicit form of the argument. This is why I missed it in the last round.) "[Every change] either is itself passively in motion on account of something else ... " If you were to think about this statement, it assumes that there are only two ways from which change can be caused:
1.) The change was intentional ("active") or
2.) The change's cause was accidental and caused by another ("passive").

is an antonym for "intended". There is no reason to suggest that an accidental cause needs to have a prior cause. To be more explicit, the dichotomy presented by Pro in this argument is a false one. The presence of this fallacy renders the argument unsound.

Direct Responses:
I."I am arguing that it is logical to think that it behaves in the same way that all observed change does"
It isn't because doing so is a hasty generalization. [1] They are not equivalent phenomena so this is not an induction we can make.

Final Remarks & Debate Conclusion:
Though there were problems with this debate (As with all others.), I wholeheartedly thank Raumulus for having it with me. It's been a pleasure discussing such an important topic with you. Vale!

As of this point in the debate, I still contend that the arguments have yet to be properly substantiated. The Cosmological Argument has not been validated, and the Design Argument is hopelessly flawed. I think - if one wishes to quickly read through the debate - my primary and best responses can be found in rounds 2 and 4, though, obviously, the other round (round 3) was vital in the discussion (especially "1a").

The resolution has not been affirmed, and I encourage the voters to vote Con.

[1] -
Debate Round No. 5
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
I wouldn't say so, but I could understand how he thinks the language is harsh.
Posted by Raumulus 2 years ago
Did you feel disrespected DrCereal?
Posted by ParadoxPi 2 years ago
Very disappointed in Raumulus for writing hard to follow points, then claiming Con has not addressed them(or didnt understand). I hope Raumulus will learn not to be so sure of his points, and learn to respond respectfully in the future.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
Well, I'm sorry to disappoint, but I already posted my response before realizing a better word could have been used.

Don't misconstrue my messages as being apathetic. I certainly did care, and I thank you.
Posted by I_just_plant_the_seed 2 years ago
I don't know why I even cared.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
I suppose I could have simply referred to it as just an "argument".
Oh well.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
That is very true. It's a large stretch to call the argument a "syllogism" (or to even suggest it has a syllogistic form), but I called it as such for lack of a better word.
Posted by I_just_plant_the_seed 2 years ago

Oh, gotcha. Although your outline of the design argument is presented as a syllogism, it more closely resembles an inductive argument. If it were a syllogism, it would be deductive like your syllogism for the cosmological argument:

Major Premise: An cause* is necessarily prior to the effect
Minor Premise: A thing* cannot be prior to itself
Conclusion: A thing* cannot be its own cause*

Notice that each premise has a term in common with the conclusion, and that they have a term in common with each other i.e. 'prior'. This is a proper deduction, and a valid syllogism; whereas, the other is not.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
I hope you don't abandon the debate.
Posted by DrCereal 2 years ago
If you're talking to me, then the syllogism is supposed to represent the thinking of the entire "Design Argument". I wasn't sure what parts of the post were specific to the proof of intention so I included everything to be sure I wasn't leaving any of the important bits out. As I clearly said in the post itself, I didn't quite understand what Raumulus meant and that I was sure the syllogism had some (if not a lot of) errors.

Disregard this if you weren't talking to me.
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