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The Contender
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The God Hypothesis is a supported Scientific explanation

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/20/2012 Category: Science
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,699 times Debate No: 21156
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (2)




First Round is for acceptance of this only

Understand that my approach is suppose to be of a scientist using the scientific method not a philosopher like William Lane Craig and other debaters attempt to do, So its a little bit different. I expect CON to debate and argue under this context. This means my opponent will have to try and show how my hypothesis does not fit the data. Then, falsify it using the experiments I devised and that I suggested would falsify my hypothesis.

I am arguing that the God Hypothesis is a supported scientific explanation for the origins of existence. I adjusted my hypothesis from previous debates to more accurately fit the data.

Moreover, since my approach is scientific in nature, the burden of proof is mainly on me. It needs to be five rounds for me to have enough ground to work under so I can adequately respond and address my opponents objections.


Thanks ken.

I await your proof of God using the scientific method.

Just to clarify, the scientific method requires a falsifiable hypothesis, a test that could falsify said hypothesis, and the ability to make empirical observations.
Debate Round No. 1



According to the Hartle-Hawking's model, The Space-Time Theorem of General Relativity clearly states that space, time, and matter and energy all had a concrete beginning. What I mean with the universe having a beginning is that one point in the past space, time, and matter/energy came into being. At this point, called the initial singularity, gravity, space-time curvature, density etc. becomes infinite. In a place where the curvature in space-time is infinite or near infinite the laws of physics break down and do not apply. This singularity occurs in black holes and of course, the Big Bang Singularity which created most of the matter in the Universe. The aforementioned first law of thermodynamics does not hold inside a singularity and matter may be created or destroyed, as the Big Bang theory suggest. [1]

Borde, Guth,Vilenken developed a theorem that proves inflationary models must contain singularities [2]. They also authored the BGV theorem which proves that ANY universe that is on average in a state of cosmic expansion greater than 0 throughout its history cannot be infinite in the past, but must have a past space time boundary [3]. This theorem holds even when we don't have a complete quantum theory of gravity of the early universe.

In addition, Even if we are just a tiny part of a so-called "multi-verse" with another version of space-time that follow different laws of nature, their theorem would STILL require an absolute beginning from this multi-verse as well. This is because the BGV theorem carries only one assumption: If the expansion rate of any universe is greater than 0, the universe began.


The fundamental laws and constants of nature fall under an extraordinarily narrow range of life permitting values ,within an infinite set, in which the right value was chosen every time. The slightest change in these values would prevent any kind of life from evolving or existing. Moreover, these perfectly fine-tuned laws and constants came into being right after the big bang, error free and without change throughout this process.[4]

The phrase "finely tuned" universe is just a scientific term scientist use to describe the measurement of the laws and constants . We know that present day particle physics have a whole lot of adjusted parameters like the mass of certain particles along with the strength of certain forces.

How do we know the values are fine-tuned? We know through math that most of the values in the parameters will not allow life to exist if these values were smaller or larger. This means we don't need to know what values don't produce life, just the relevant values of the constants that do produce a life permitting universe. [5]

What I mean by fine-tuned for life, I am talking about fine-tuned for the building blocks and environments that life of any kind requires [6]. In other words, If the constants were even altered just a little, You would not get chemistry or matter much less planets and stars that can serve as places where life might evolve. Thus, it does not necessarily have to be human life or life as we know it, but life that we don't know or have not discovered yet.


Philosophically, there cannot be an infinite amount of time because Time is by definition a series of "moments". The nature of a moment is "a beginning of the future and an end of the past." The assumption of an absolutely first moment would consequently carry with it the implication of a period of which is terminated by, and prior to, that first moment, and the prior time would itself contain moments. Thus, if time was eternal in the past, we would have never have arrived at this point, which means there has to be an absolute first cause.

Science has essentially stumbled upon the same conclusion. However, since time is supposed to be a part of the universe, then the first cause could not possibly be the universe itself. So the question before us is " What caused the big bang?".

Since the cause for the beginning of the universe also had to have been the explanation of the finely tuned universe, this First cause would have to be some sort of intelligent designer similar to human beings but without the limitations the universe possesses. I will call this cause the God Hypothesis. If the God hypothesis is true, then the universe should exhibit divine attributes from a divine intelligence. The null hypothesis is that there is no cause for this finley-tuned universe and it just quantum fluctuated out of nothing.


Now, the space-time boundary prevents us from observing this entity directly to discover the properties of this cause. However, There are all kinds of things that we can't see or identify but yet we see there effects which led us to potential hypothesises about what they potentially were and how those things manifest using the inductive method of reasoning.

Inductive reasoning is a form of logic that is most characteristic of the scientific method itself, because it moves from the effects to causes which can yield the most likely conclusion for a certain body of data. This inductive method is important for physicist when observing the unobservable nature of subatomic particles or atoms, which can only be detected through indirect manners in order to learn about its nature.

In the next round, I will provide the experiments that prove my hypothesis and the experiments that potentially could falsify it.

[4] John D. Barrow and Frank J. Tipler, "The Anthropic Cosmological Principle" p. 288
[6] Paul Davies, "How bio-friendly is the universe?" International Journal of Astrobiology, vol. 2, no. 2 (2003): 115.


Thanks ken.

Fundamentally, this debate is about a few key issues:

1) What caused the Big Bang?

Possibility A: there is no cause

The Big Bang ("the singularity") created time, matter, and space (from nothing). Many physicists believe that the singularity is an event outside normal human understanding. We evolved to always search for a cause: if we got burned, we ask what caused us to get burned. In this way, our ancestors avoided repeatedly burning themselves. Yet, because the singularity occurred before time and space existed, normal human questions like "where did it occur" or "what caused it" are incoherent. Our natural human impulse is to believe that everything must have a cause, but the singularity defies all convention – that is why it is called "the singularity." A cause must precede its effect, but if time did not exist, one thing cannot precede another. For this reason, causality questions cannot be applied to the Big Bang.

Stephen Hawking explains this as follows, "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 … 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 … This means there is no possibility of a Creator because there is no time for a Creator to have existed. Since time itself began at the moment of the Big Bang, it was an event that could not have been caused or created by anyone or anything." (source: Discovery Channel documentary "Curiosity")

If all things must have a cause, then God suffers from the same problem as the singularity: what caused God to exist? If a theist were to agree that there exists an entity that does not need a cause, then that concedes that the singularity could exist without a cause.

In formal logic, the theist would be arguing:

There exists an X which does not have a cause
X is a singular entity

The singularity meets these criteria equally well as God. Yet, the singularity does not suffer from the paradox of: how does one create time when one cannot exist "before" time. Exodus says it took God 7 days to create the Universe. This obviously doesn't make sense – a day cannot exist before time existed.

Possibility B: there is a cause, we just haven't fully discovered it yet

There are many things we just don't know yet about the Big Bang. In the early universe (e.g. at time = 10^ -35 seconds and earlier), the normal laws of physics break down because there are such high energy densities. This makes it extremely difficult for us to understand what is happening. Einstein's Theory of General Relativity explains large-scale forces and quantum mechanics explains small scale forces, but we have yet to create a theory that explains both General Relativity and quantum mechanics (called the Grand Unified Theory or GUT). There is still the possibility (or in many physicists' minds, the inevitability) that string theorists or other physicists will discover a successful Grand Unified Theory.

Astronomer Phil Plait explains, "The basic trouble is that Einstein's relativity gives us a good description of some things (large scale gravity, for example), and quantum mechanics tells us about other things (how particles behave), but no one has ever successfully combined the two, and they must be combined to understand [the Big Bang]." (source:

My opponent's argument essentially boils down to "there is no other possible cause, therefore God." However, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. The current lack of a Grand Unified Theory does not prove God's existence, just like the lack of an explanation of solar eclipses during the Mayan's time did not prove the existence of their gods. This is fundamentally an appeal to ignorance. When we fail to find an explanation under the scientific method, we do not give up and assign the explanation to God; instead, we keep looking. At best, my opponent can win that we should keep looking for an explanation; he cannot possibly win that God is a "supported" hypothesis merely because past hypotheses have failed.

Possibility C: it is impossible to fully understand the Big Bang

Phil Plait points out that in the early Universe, the Big Bang was so small that it would need to be described by both the laws of General Relativity and quantum mechanics. However, quantum mechanics involves the Uncertainty Principle, which states that if you know some things about the Big Bang, it becomes IMPOSSIBLE to know other things. As Plait explains, "At some point, [the Big Bang] got so small and so dense that bizarre quantum laws took effect — things like the Uncertainty Principle, which states that the more you know about one characteristic of an object (say, its position) the less you know about another (its velocity). There are several such laws, and they make it hard — impossible, really — to know everything about the universe at that moment." (source: same)

Possibility D: quantum fluctuations

In quantum mechanics, something can come from nothing. "Quantum fluctuation is the temporary appearance of energetic particles out of nothing, as allowed by the Uncertainty Principle." [1] New Scientist explains that modeling confirms that the mass of protons and neutrons comes from virtual particles, called Higgs bosons, which appear out of nothing. [2] "Physicists have now confirmed that the apparently substantial stuff is actually no more than fluctuations in the quantum vacuum." [2] Particle physicists, using super-colliders, are on the cusp of proving the Higg's boson. [3] While many parts of quantum mechanics defy our normal understanding of events, it would allow something to come from nothing.

2) The argument from fine-tuning

My opponent's argument is essentially that if certain constants were any different, life could not exist. However, ken himself cites multi-verse theory, which allows for the possibility of many different universes. Phil Plait explains that if there were multiple Big Bangs, each singularity would wipe the slate clean, creating a new set of physical laws and constants. (same source) As a result, there could have been millions of Universes before the one we currently live in. Or, there could be billions of Universes that exist alongside ours.

Richard Dawkins explains, in The God Delusion, that the argument from fine-tuning is a failure because by definition, the evolution of our Universe, the Earth, and humans are all highly improbably events. Yet, we exist. A highly improbable event does not need an explanation for its occurrence once it occurs. For example, each woman has 400,000 eggs and each man creates 400 billion sperm cells over his lifetime; the probably of YOUR specific existence is very small – it involves the exact correct egg meeting the exact correct sperm. However, you exist. The highly improbably has already occurred. Your existence's improbable nature is irrelevant at that point.

So if there are billions of planets, it is not that far-fetched that one exists that is a perfect distance from its sun for life. If there are billions of Universes, it is not far-fetched to believe that one exists with the right constants. Even if only one Universe ever existed, then a highly improbable event may have happened. But this doesn't prove a Creator or Design, any more than YOUR existence proves a Design.

3) Induction

Particles, like Higgs, aren't proven until we can observe them directly in a super-collider. Until then, they are unsupported hypotheses. However, I await my opponent's tests.


Debate Round No. 2



The Law of Cause and Effect states that for every effect there must be a cause for it. The Law of Biogenesis, attributed to Louis Pasteur, states that life arises from pre-existing life, not from nonliving material (life as we know it).

Both these physical laws together indicate that whatever caused this beginning must have been an eternal life force that exist outside of space and time who intelligently designed carbon based life forms like us along with the universe itself. It must be timeless and therefore changeless without the universe because it created time. Since it also created space, it must transcend space as well and must therefore be immaterial not physical. Lastly, it must be an intelligence since it created human life. Thus, the properties of this cause would be omni-present, eternal, and immaterial as well as intelligent.


D. There are only two possible candidates we are aware of that could possibly fit such a description of an immaterial, omnipresent, eternal and intelligent entity : either an abstract object (like numbers) or a human mind (or consciousness).

Abstract objects like numbers or the logical absolutes cannot be found under rocks or grown out of trees nor are they contingent upon human minds. Our minds simply recognize these necessary truths not create them. Nevertheless, these kind of abstract objects are still demonstrable because we can create physical manifestations of them in reality. However, abstract objects by definition do not stand in casual relationships, so it could not have been an abstract object.

Only a human mind would stand in agent causality where a cause would be able to bring about new effects at will without any physical dimensions or determining conditions by virtue of its agency. This is called "substance dualism" where there are two fundamental kinds of substance: mental and material. The mental would not have extension in the spacial and temporal constraints with the universe but occupy an independent "realm" of existence distinct from that of the physical world [1]. However, human minds are understood to be intrinsically connected to material substances that impose limited knowledge and power, so it could not have been a human mind.

Thus, if it cannot be an abstract object or a human mind, then maybe its a combination of the two which would involve a disembodied mind where there would not be a brain to impose such constraints. A disembodied mind would explain why you can get a material effect with a beginning from an eternal cause with unlimited abilities. If this new possible candidate should be true, then we should find attributes of an all-knowing and all-powerful being exhibited within the universe.


The Principle of Universality states, that the same general scientific principles are probably true throughout the cosmos. This principle can bring us to the conclusion that by extracting from the unknown amount of intelligence in the natural sciences to the most likely degree of intelligence that is applicable throughout the cosmos [2].

1. All-Knowing

The BGV theorem predicts a future eternal inflationary universe, which is also a product of fine-tuning. This means there's potentially an infinite number of mathematical relations out there to be discovered. Each of these relations by definition represents a small amount of cosmic intelligence waiting to be understood, so it follows that the universe must necessarily possess an infinite degree of mathematical intelligence. This suggest that the degree of intelligence and knowledge is unlimited. Thus, the attribute of this cause must be omniscient.

2. All-Powerful

The expansion rate of the universe, which is called the cosmological constant [3], will continue to accelerate forever. Since this is a product of fine-tuning, it shows that there's potentially an infinite degree of power or rates of acceleration being exerted to expand the universe. Thus, the attribute of this cause must be omni-potent.

Therefore, from the collection of divine attributes that were discovered (immaterial, omnipresent, eternal entity, all-knowing, all-powerful) it follows logically that the cause of the universe is a personal absolute mind.


Experiment #1: Life from Non-life

The Miller Urey-experiment attempted to prove the origin of life (as we know it) could have occurred on the early earth under natural conditions without intelligence, but the experiment actually provided compelling evidence for exactly the opposite conclusion [4].

Experiment #2: Mind-Body Dualism

Let me provide some context first. Obviously, much of what happens in our minds is influenced by what happens in our bodies and I fully acknowledged this when I mentioned that human minds are intrinsically connected. However, not everything that goes on in our minds is causally determined by what goes on in our bodies. Sometimes what goes on in our bodies is a result of what goes on in our minds.

For example, the movements of my fingers as I type this response is ultimately produced by my mental events. Here we have mental-to-physical causation. What explains both this choice of mine and the physical events in my body that are ultimately produced by this choice? The explanation is the purpose that I provide a response to CON's objections. A purposeful explanation is a teleological explanation. In addition, free will is also a mental event. We can make decisions apart from what the brain and body tells us. For example, I have the choice to act upon my emotional desire to have sex after marriage and negate my basic biological desire to have sex before it. Here we have mental versus physical properties.

A famous scientist named Wilder Penfield conducted studies that are consistent with my point that choices can be undetermined events with a teleological explanation. In his fascinating book The Mystery of the Mind, he writes the following [5]:

'When I have caused a conscious patient to move his hand by applying an electrode to the motor cortex of one hemisphere, I have often asked him about it. Invariably his response was: "I didn't do that. You did". When I caused him to vocalize, he said:" I didn't make that sound". You pulled it out of me. When I caused the record of the stream of consciousness to run again and so presented to him the record of his past experience, he marveled that he should be conscious of the past as well as of the present. He was astonished that it should come back to him so completely, with more detail than he could possibly recall voluntarily. He assumed at once that, somehow, the surgeon was responsible for the phenomenon, but he recognized the details as those of his own past experience.

Penfield goes on to note that, "There is no place in the cerebral cortex where electrical stimulation will cause a patient . . . to decide . In light of his work as a neuroscientist, Penfield concludes the following: For my own part, after years of striving to explain the mind on the basis of brain-action alone, I have come to the conclusion that it is simpler (and far easier and logical) if one adopts the hypothesis that our being does consist of two fundamental elements.'

Therefore , If CON can demonstrate ,where others have failed, through one or both of these experiments that intelligence arises entirely from nature, it would falsify the God Hypothesis. In the next round, I will show how my hypothesis has more explanatory scope compared to the null hypothesis and better explains the data. I will also address the other arguments made by CON.

[2] Michael A. Corey, "The God Hypothesis" p. 241


Thanks Ken.


R1) Omni-present, eternal, immaterial

My opponent cites the Law of Cause and Effect as if it's canon. However, I have already explained that things that are normally true to our everyday experience are often wrong when applied to physics & quantum mechanics. For example, the Uncertainty Principle also doesn't make sense to our everyday experience: that we cannot know both the position and velocity of a particle. The reason Schroedinger's Cat is so perplexing is because the idea of the cat being both alive and dead until we open the box is counter to our everyday experience of life. Many prominent physicists believe that the singularity has no cause.

In addition, my opponent doesn't answer why it's okay for God to have no cause without violating the Law of Cause and Effect.

My opponent cites Pasteur's theory that biological life cannot come from non-biological material. However, Pasteur wrote in the 1800's, and modern biologists disagree. It is likely that RNA evolved first, on its own. [1] The discovery of catalytic RNA (such as ribozyme), which is capable of catalyzing its own synthesis, lends credence to this view. [1] The discovery of viruses, which are non-living entities containing RNA, lends further credence to this view. Eventually, the RNA was surrounded by cell membranes, forming the first living bacteria.

As to God being immaterial, my opponent must explain how an immaterial being can be observed or how an immaterial being can cause things to happen in a material universe. Otherwise, there can be no support for the God hypothesis because it does not conform to the scientific method.

R2) Disembodied Mind

My opponent's theory is that God is a disembodied mind. He claims that minds become all powerful when they become disembodied because we are removing physical constraints. However, it seems absurd to suggest that if my mind were taken out of my body and rendered immaterial, that I would suddenly be all powerful. My mind would still be constrained by the functions for which it was created and its size. An all powerful mind would need to be both infinitely large and infinitely small: infinitely large to encompass every possible action that one could take and infinitely small to prevent long time delays as action potentials travel along neurons. However, it is impossible to be both infinitely large and infinitely small. The singularity is a preferable explanation because it is only infinitely small.

In addition, a mind can only interact with the material world because it is material. My brain can only move objects because it can control my hands. If you place my brain in a jar, by itself, it cannot interact with the world. My opponent must explain how something immaterial can interact with the material world.

Lastly, if a disembodied mind still exists, then supposedly ghosts should exist and interact with the world. When we die, supposedly we become a disembodied brain. There's no reason why we couldn't form a brain from non-material, using the memory of our actual brains. In addition, my opponent would have to renounce a belief in the afterlife to disprove that people become disembodied brains when they die, and thus all dead people should be all powerful and should be able to interact with the world.

R3) Personal absolute mind

My opponent claims that because the universe is expanding, there are an infinite number of mathematical relations, and thus, an infinite amount of "cosmic knowledge." However, these mathematical relations, such as the interaction of large bodies (gravity) are all described by the same equations. They are not "new knowledge." There are an infinite number of iterations of the same equation, when you plug in different numbers, but this doesn't represent an infinite amount of knowledge.

Y = X + 1

When X=0, Y=1
When X=1, Y=2
When X=2, Y=3

The above equation does not prove an all knowing God, merely because it provides for infinite possibilities.
As to the universe's expansion, the cosmological constant is not an infinite amount of energy. It is a set amount of dark energy that never decreases. But it doesn't prove an all powerful being.

We don't fully understand dark energy, or even know for a fact that dark energy is the proper explanation for inflation, but the lack of knowledge also does not prove God. There are alternate theories to explain inflation, such as Horava gravity. But again, a lack of knowledge doesn't prove God because new theories arise over time. If a lack of knowledge proved God, then the Mayan's proved God because they didn't know what caused solar eclipses. And that would be the end of it.

Arguing from ignorance is the exact opposite of the scientific method.

R4) Experiments

Experiment #1: Life from non-life

Recent re-analysis of the Miller-Urey experiment, in 2007, showed that their samples actually contained all 20 amino acids used in biological life, proving that these biological building blocks could form under the conditions that existed in the early atmosphere. [2] Another study entitled "Origins of Prebiological Systems and of Their Molecular Matrices" showed that RNA and DNA bases can be obtained through simulated prebiotic chemistry in a reduced atmosphere. [2] Other researchers such as Jeffrey Bada and Jim Cleaves at Scripps Institution of Oceanography tested the hypothesis that the early Earth contained iron and carbonate, and amino acids formed even more easily under these conditions. And a recent study by Brooks et al found that "old genes" (genes that were shared among common ancestors) produced protein molecules that were enriched in those amino acids that were most readily produced in the Miller–Urey experiment, meaning that older gene sequences used a smaller number of amino acids – only those available in prebiotic nature. [2]

This experiment was most definitely a success in proving that life evolved from non-life.

Experiment #2: Mind-body dualism

My opponent first claims that because he can avoid his biological impulse for sex, this proves a soul that can make decisions outside the mind and body. This is wrong. It proves that his frontal cortex (responsible for rational thought) can overwhelm his lizard brain (the part of the brain responsible for instincts).

As to the Penfield "study," I can't locate anything my opponent cites in his source. Penfield was a famous brain surgeon who wrote in the 1920's. Supposedly, he is saying that there must be a soul because he failed to find the part of the brain where decisions are made. However, neuro-biology has advanced a great deal since the 1920's. In 2002, researches in London imaged the parts of people's brains that made decisions when they made their final selections in a supermarket. [3] With the invention of fMRI's, there is no brain function that we cannot map to a specific region.

Given the advances over the last 90 years, we no longer need to believe that there is something external to our bodies controlling us.

Lastly, it is of note that none of these experiments provide unique proof of God. They merely show things that science, at one time, had difficulty explaining and then, my opponent uses an appeal from ignorance to conclude that God must exist.

A true test of God's existence would be: ken tells God, "God I, like Abraham, am going to kill my son, unless you intervene." If God is omni-benevolent, he will intervene. If not, he doesn't exist.

This is a true scientific test because the null hypothesis DISPROVES God. In a valid experiment, your hypothesis can be disproven. My opponent hasn't devised an experiment that could disprove God.

Debate Round No. 3



Correction: In formulating the question for my hypothesis, I meant to say "If there is a cause at all, what caused the big bang?".

Nevertheless, let me me explain the data based on the results. Although, this being would have to be a timeless cause; The very act of creation does imply a direct causal relationship between the cause and the effect in which this cause did not stand before and therefore would be a change that brings God into time. Thus, What I would argue based on the results is that Cause and effect must have been simultaneous and occurr within the same moment. In other words, The moment in which God caused the universe to come into being would also be the moment the universe came into being making the cause and effect simultaneous .

Moreover, this personal absolute mind must have had the emotional desire to create finite human beings along with our life-permitting universe and then freely choose to act upon that desire with the intention of having a relationship with its human creation. Drawing from experience, this would be similar to human minds acting as agents in the physical world through our bodies. Then, as humans, we have the emotional desire to have offspring with the intention to also have a relationship with our offspring.


Well first off, Quantum fluctuations would not explain how we as humans came to be or the fine-tuning of the universe since the fine-tuning parameters were always the same.

Second, Just because scientists cannot presently find a cause for some quantum events does not mean its evidence that some things don't have to have a cause. There are at least 10 different interpretations of quantum mechanics and some of them are fully deterministic. As physicist David Bohm, has pointed out, there are many "hidden variables" at the quantum level of reality, of which anyone could contain the sufficient reason for a certain quantum event [1]. We cannot make conclusions like this with any kind of confidence especially when we don't fully understand quantum mechanics in the first place since its still in its infancy.

Lastly, Quantum events do not take place in "absolute" nothingness. It actually takes place out of a larger quantum field ,which is a part of physical reality, that enables particles to come in and out of existence. Without this field there would be no quantum events [1]. This is another reason why its not accurate to say that a particular quantum outcome is "uncaused". Therefore, there is no reason to think that not every cause precedes an effect and , as such, we can reject the null hypothesis.


Well first off, Direct empirical evidence for a cause is not required in science/scientific method nor is the mechanism for it. For example, We know that gravitational forces accounts for planetary orbits, why masses fall to the ground on earth, etc... But, we cannot explain clearly what and why gravity "is" or where it "comes from" along with determine its mechanism. We just take it as a brute fact.

Secondly, The Law of Cause and Effect does not require that every cause must have an explanation or cause. Instead, it states that for every effect there must be a cause for it.

Now, I would accept that causality is also a metaphysical requirement called the principle of sufficient reason. Under these philosophical rules, God would indeed require an explanation. However, the topic of this debate is science not philosophy. Therefore, I am not required to provide an explanation of God any more than I would with Gravity.


I am not sure why CON feels I was arguing that human minds will gain super powers once the brain dies. In fact, I was arguing the exact opposite and was explaining how it could not be a human mind at all. Instead, the conclusion from the totality of my empirical observations was me providing "newly" found knowledge of a different kind of mind, which is a disembodied or absolute mind.



Mathmatical relationships exist where we look for them in the universe because they're a human construct. Since we're a product of eternal inflating universe or multi-verse, it does indeed follow that the universe would have an infinite amount of possible knowledge that can be understood the more humans explore the universe. I merely mentioned inflation in order to explain that no matter how far technology advances we will always be stumbling upon new mathematical relationships or more relevant discoveries like different laws of nature or fine-tuning constants. CON focused on the expansion part only.


I am afraid my opponent needs to look up the definition of power again. Power is the rate at which energy is transferred, used, or transformed [2]; its not the synonymous term of energy. So I agree the cosmological constant or vacuum energy is not an infinite amount of energy; instead, this very precise cancellation effect between negative and positive effect happens to be the most well adjusted fine-tuning parameter of them all. Since this constant as well as the rest were present from the very beginning of the universe, it follows logically that the cause for this beginning was responsible for the fine-tuning of this constant as well.


Experiment #1: Life from Non-life

I am afraid the evidence CON provided was not evidence that life (as we know it) can come from non-living matter. Of course, the meaning of the term "life" is not fully established or defined in science and ,thus, there could be other types of life forms besides us we don't know. However, unless the Miller experiment can show that carbon based life forms can come from non-life, my argument stands.

Experiment #2: Mind-Body Dualism

CON is confusing the concept of the correlation of two events with the concept of the identity of two events. It simply does not follow from the fact that two events are correlated that they are identical. Correlation does not prove causation. There is the fact that movements of bodily limbs like arms and legs are correlated with events in the motor cortex of the brain. No one believes, however, that movements of arms and legs are identical with their causal antecedents in the brain. Upon reflection, it is just as obvious that there is no good reason to believe that psychological events are identical with brain events simply because the two are correlated.

Again, CON must provide evidence that there is a region in the brain that causes these mental events when it comes to intention states and decisions or will power that are not determined by basic biological functions but by outside influences. Otherwise, my argument stands here as well.


"A highly improbable event does not need an explanation for its occurrence once it occurs"

The fundamental problem with this argument has been basically revealed by my opponent himself. Answer this riddle for me, Can accidents happen when there's nothing there? Let me explain what I mean by this. If there is not evidence for one other overlapping universe, how can CON base something that is not there? The fact is , NO, we don't know whether the fine-tuning constants could come from a random see of colliding universes.

In addition, whether there could be other universes that came before us (or are paralleled) would not be relevant to the argument in explaining how we got a finely tuned universe in the first place; Most importantly, its unfalsifiable. Therefore, in a philosophical debate, I would be required to provide an argument against this explanation. However, in a scientific debate, an unfalsifiable hypothesis not based on empirical observation or experience has no place in science, which automatically disqualifies this as an explanation.

[1] Michael A. Corey, "The God Hypothesis" p. 14, 197


== Rebuttal ==

I don't understand my opponent's labeling system, so I'm going to change his labels.

{{{ God caused the Universe }}}

My opponent calls this "Alternate Hypothesis."

My opponent claims that God created the Universe by using cause and effect at the same moment. However, this still doesn't answer any of my arguments. If time did not exist, the concept of "the same moment" is incoherent; the singularity thus can have no cause. Furthermore, cause must precede effect otherwise it is not a cause. If I laugh and tickle me, at the exact same moment in time, down to the millisecond, then you cannot possibly say that tickling me caused me to laugh because the tickling did not even have time to register in my brain. My laughter must have had another cause. Lastly, my opponent never answers what caused God to exist? If things can exist without causes, then the singularity does not need a cause.

My opponent then asserts that God's mind had the desire to interact with humans. Firstly, my opponent fails to show that God has ever interacted with us. If he would like to introduce the Old Testament as evidence, I'd happily refute it. Secondly, God is supposed to be omnipotent. Human emotions, such as neediness or loneliness, contradict omnipotence because they are weaknesses that cause us to act less than rationally.

{{{ Quantum Fluctuations }}}

My opponent calls this Null Hypothesis. Yet, this wasn't the only explanation I put forward for the singularity.

My opponent once again mentions fine-tuning but doesn't respond to any of my arguments against it. Given that we exist, we should not be surprised that we do not observe features of the universe which are incompatible with our own existence. Highly improbable events happen randomly by chance, especially if you believe multi-verse theory, as my opponent does. With an infinite number of universes, it was inevitable that one would result in the constants we see. Thus, highly improbable events don't prove God's existence; they just prove an improbable event happened.

My opponent claims we cannot draw conclusions from quantum mechanics because we do not fully understand quantum mechanics. *This takes out all his arguments.* You cannot conclude God created the Universe merely because we do not understand quantum mechanics. A full understanding of quantum mechanics and general relativity (a Grand Unified Theory) would fully explain the Big Bang, without resorting to God.

Lastly, my opponent claims that quantum fields are made of matter. However, this isn't true. A quantum field is a "theoretical framework for constructing quantum mechanical models of systems." Particles pop into existence out of nothing due to the Uncertainty Principle.


I don't even know what my opponent is arguing anymore, quite frankly. All I can do is refute what he is saying.

He tries to defend God superceding the Law of Cause and Effect by not needing His own cause. He defends this by saying not everything in physics (or science) needs an explanation. Besides being ridiculous, this takes out his own argument. If the singularity doesn't need an explanation, we don't need God as a cause. But in addition, we *do* know what causes gravity because of general relativity: gravity is caused by curvatures in space.

My opponent claims existence doesn't need a cause (to bypass the problem of God having no cause). But if this is true, we don't need an explanation for the singularity's existence. There simply was a singularity, which was nothingness and infinite energy, all packed into one. It existed. And from it, came the Universe. My opponent never contests the singularity's existence, he merely says its existence requires a cause. This is incoherent. Then God's existence also requires a cause. My opponent consistently holds God to a different standard, above causation.


My opponent claims he provided "evidence" of a disembodied mind, but he clearly doesn't understand what the scientific method means by evidence. An observation of a disembodied mind would be evidence. Our inability to prove that humans live on after death, as disembodied minds, seems to disprove this hypothesis. My opponent also doesn't answer how God's disembodied mind could be both infinitely big and infinitely small. Or how God can cause material things to happen if he is immaterial.

Supposedly my opponent answers this above when he says that not all scientific theories need explanations, but we can *observe* gravity. We can't observe God. All my opponent *has* is explanatory factors. If he can't explain things about God, his only method of proof breaks down.

{{{ All Knowing }}}

My opponent, again, claims that because the universe is expanding, we'll always discover new knowledge. However, just because one infinite exists ("an infinite amount of observable universe") does not mean that another infinite exists ("an infinitely knowledgeable God). Humans may make new observations as the universe expands, but it's unlikely we'll discover new "mathematical relationships." The Laws of Physics should hold constant for newly observable regions of the universe. And it's not like new knowledge is always being created; all the matter already existed. Inflation is just stretching it out, like an inflating balloon. Lastly, my opponent, at best, proves that the scope of *human* knowledge is infinite. This doesn't prove God.

{{{ All Powerful }}}

My opponent just morphs this argument into fine-tuning, which is answered above.


Experiment 1: Life from Non-life

I really expected more from my opponent than multiple appeals to ignorance. The Miller-Urey experiment was *not* designed to create life from non-life. The evolution of life from non-life would take millions of years. We cannot possibly produce this in a laboratory in 5 years.

I ask my opponent: do you agree that evolution is true? If evolution is true, then the evidence is sufficient to prove that RNA evolved, then cell membranes evolved, and when you combine the two, you get the first bacterium. The experiment which showed that older genes produced proteins using amino acids that would have been more prevalent in the young Earth provides substantial support for this hypothesis. My opponent isn't providing support for the God hypothesis. He's making the classic Creationist argument: "well, we've never *seen* a monkey turn into a human, so evolution is wrong." The demand for observable results is ridiculously hypocritical when my opponent's "hypothesis" is completely unobservable.

Mind-Body Dualism

My opponent just asks for an impossible standard of proof here as well. His argument is essentially: "it is impossible to establish causation using science, only correlation." He then argues, right after that, "thus, if my opponent fails to establish causation, I win." This makes no sense. My opponent agrees that it's impossible, using science, to ever 100% establish causation. This doesn't prove God. Given that the brain can cause reactions in the limbs, there's no reason the brain can't cause our emotional state. The fact that drugs alter our emotional state by binding to specific synapses in the brain is additional support for this theory. There would be no explanation for why drugs work if you believe that the soul controls our emotions. Then how does Prozac act on the soul to make depressed people happier? I'll let my opponent explain that one.

And I did prove there is a specific brain region that regulates decision-making using the UK brain imaging study.


Is my opponent trolling me? He says, in response to my multi-verse explanation of fine tuning: "in a scientific debate, an unfalsifiable hypothesis not based on empirical observation or experience has no place in science, which automatically disqualifies this as an explanation." I agree - apply the same standard to God. Game over.
Debate Round No. 4


Con's Possibility B:

I did not respond to this claim before because I have already talked about it in round 2. I will elaborate on it now.

First off, CON is confusing the the theory of GR (Einstein created) which does NOT include quantum gravity with the Space-Time Theorem of GR (Hawking and Penrose) which does include quantum gravity. Even though quantum gravity does reject singularities, According to the Hartle-Hawking's model, still shows a concrete beginning of space-time, matter, energy from a single point. This point just would not be a singularity of "infinite" density.

In addition, BGV theorem does not assume Einsteins equations and holds even when we don't have a complete quantum theory of gravity of the early universe. In both models, it was shown that they could work with or without the singularity and in both situations the universe still had a beginning.

Con's Possibility A:

Since matter and energy cannot exist without time, the singularity had to have come into being as well because the law of conservation of energy does not hold and exist at this initial singularity either. So CON cannot say that the law of cause and effect (time) did not apply, but then say that the law of conservation of energy (universe) still applied. Its false and he is just "special pleading" here. Besides, as I said above, there does not need to be a beginning point for there to be a beginning at all according to the BGV and Hartle-Hawking model.

The God (alternative) Hypothesis

From CON: "cause must precede effect otherwise it is not a cause...."

Well first off, CON does not explain how its also incoherent to say that the cause and effect happen simultaneously. Second, CON objection has no basis since he has yet to show that mental events like intention states and decisions occurring in the mind are reducible to brain action "alone" in the first place. I have provided every reason to believe that the moment this mind ,which has no Spacial/Temporal constraints like human minds, chose (an undetermined event) to create a temporal effect was the same moment "Time" came into being. Remember, I am not saying GOD is chronically prior to the universe but Causality prior.

Now, my opponent says I did not empirically show that this being actually wants a relationship with its children. I would have argued that God has manifested himself in the person of Jesus Christ and his resurrection would prove this. However, Since this kind of event cannot be scientifically repeated or tested, I left it out of the debate. Its one of the limitation of the scientific method.

Null Hypothesis

CON claims that I did not address the fine-tuning objection but I did actually. I have already explained in round 2 that there is no evidence that the fine-tuning came into being by accident. This is because the fine-tuning parameter stayed the same from the beginning and there is no evidence of one other universe to even entertain the possibility that the fine-tuning laws were accidental in nature.

Lastly, I never said that the quantum field is made out of matter but that it was "something" that was part of physical reality instead of "nothing", which is absence of something. Now, If CON is trying to argue that "nothing" is not nothing anymore and refer to the quantum field as nothing´┐Ż, then CON would not only be highly illogical but arbritrary in doing so. It is true that you cannot be purely philosophical when making any kind of argument in the scientific field, but it goes both ways. Without some type of reasonable standard of logic, Science becomes blind and ,in the process, unscientific.


Again, The Law of Cause and Effect does not require that every cause must have an explanation or cause. In fact, its not a scientific law at all, so CON asking me to explain where the cause came from is a purely philosophical question.

Nevertheless, let's accept for the sake of argument that this law actually did say this and that the explanation of the effect also required an explanation and would resort to an infinite regress. If this was a real scientific requirement, We would not get the explanation of anything and it would essentially destroy science in the process.


CON's argument that we do not understand how a mind interacts with a object, appears to be based on an appeal to our ignorance (argumentum ad ignorantiam). For it assumes if we do not know "how" A causes B, especially if the two consist of different properties, that it is not reasonable to believe the two can interact.

He asks for explanatory power but I have already provided it. Its simple. Human minds manifest and interact with the brain by stimulating parts of the brain through the force and virtue of its agency or causal power; just like the way this absolute mind would with the universe and human beings.

For example, Gravity can be explained through its effects, but CON himself does not explain where Gravity itself came from nor can we see Gravity. However, we know that gravity still exists because we see the effects. By explaining the effects of gravity, we end up explaining gravity itself without being required to ask where Gravity came from. In addition, Gravitational forces may appear to have very different properties to the solid and spatially located entities they affect, and although we may not understand "how" such interaction takes place, it nonetheless does—just as we are alert to causation between the mind and the material thing.

All Knowing

I never said new knowledge is being created for one thing and CON did not explain why its unlikely we'll discover new mathematical relationships from fine-tuning constants or elsewhere. Other than that, He does not explicitly object to this argument, so I am assuming he is conceding.

All Powerful/ World Ensemble hypothesis

CON concedes here as well.


Life from Non-life

Apparently, my opponent is confusing Abiogenesis with the Theory of Evolution here. Its very simple CON. You obviously need to program the information into the cell for it to start evolving in the first place. I am not going to even waste any more space on something my opponent should have known going into this debate.

Mind-Body Dualism

Just because chemical reactions influence choices does not mean they also produce choices. There is a difference. Yes, It has been observed that when a part of one's brain is touched with an electrode, it may cause a mental experience such as a memory to occur. Some might classify this as evidence that mental states are reducible to physical states, yet this only demonstrates that the mind is causally connected to the brain and not that they are identical. CON was suppose to show that the brain acts "alone" in causation. The UK study only shows more correlation.

In conclusion, What voters are here to decide on is three things that were established in round 1:

1. Did CON successfully falsify my hypothesis? No, he did not provide evidence but essentially conceded here.

2. Did CON arguments successfully prevented my hypothesis from rejecting the Null hypothesis? No, He failed to show how quantum fluctuations better explains the data compared to my own.

3. Did CON successfully show that my hypothesis was unscientific, specifically if it was falsifiable in the first place?
If you look into this website, you will notice that my hypothesis is perfectly aligned with the scientific method.[1]

Now, What voters are NOT here to decide on is whether or not I actually scientifically proved the existence of God. Science is not about proof or certainty as CON constantly mentions but its about evidence and falsifying a claim. Lastly, Con claimed that I created an impossible standard of proof, but this can't be the case. Since the topic is "science" and I have the BOP, there were many more ways for me to lose this debate compared to CON.



Thanks for the debate ken.

{{{ Concession??? }}}

In the previous round, ken said, "in a scientific debate, an unfalsifiable hypothesis not based on empirical observation or experience has no place in science, which automatically disqualifies this as an explanation." He was trying to apply this to multi-verse theory, but let's apply this to God. God is unfalsifiable; my opponent has not provided a single observation that would disprove God. God is unobservable, which as my opponent says, unobservable predicts have "no place in science." Other theories of physics make predictions about the universe that can be verified. The God "hypothesis" makes no other predictions that can be verified. Thus, God is unscientific. My opponent loses the debate right here. There's no point in continuing to read...

{{{ What caused the Big Bang? }}}

I argued, as physicists like Stephen Hawking and Lawrence Krauss (author of Something From Nothing), that if space-time did not exist prior to the Universe, then causation is impossible because cause must precede effect. Time didn't exist so no cause can exist.

{{{ Issue 1: Cause and effect can occur simultaneously? }}}

My opponent's response to this is that God thought the Universe into existence simultaneously as the Universe sprung into existence. However, this doesn't bypass the problem that cause must precede effect. If "cause" and effect happened simultaneously, then it's not a cause at all. If I am tickled and laugh at the exact same moment in time, the tickling could not have caused my laughter; it's impossible. Not enough time has elapsed to create an "effect." Thus, my opponent, by making this argument, agrees that God did not cause the Universe because simultaneous events cannot cause each other.

My opponent responds that because Conservation of Energy is wrong in regards to the singularity, thus Cause and Effect must be wrong too. This is the argument I already made: that the singularity does not have a cause. If cause and effect is wrong, that can only mean there is no cause, not that cause can inexplicably occur simultaneously as effect.

Lastly, you'll prefer the explanation of "no cause" to "simultaneous cause," both because it's proven by the foundation of how causes and effects function, but also because my opponent keeps referring to terms that are incoherent without space time: "simultaneous", "God existed prior to causality." Things cannot happen "at the same time" or "BEFORE time (causality) existed" if time is not yet a coherent concept.

My opponent also doesn't have a response for the argument that quantum fluctuations prove that something can come from nothing. My opponent's only response is to repeat that because quantum fields exist (even though they are theoretical and made from nothing), then something is not coming from nothing. But his argument is illogical. Humans can't make "nothing" into "something" merely through the semantics of naming.

{{{ Issue 2: What caused God? }}}

My opponent's only response to this objection is that all of science would be an infinite regress, where we would always be asking what the prior cause was, and this would supposedly invalidate science. This is silly. All roads lead back to the Big Bang and stop there. Only by acknowledging that one event does not require a cause can we escape the infinite regress. If we conclude that all events require causes, then we're stuck in the regress and cannot explain God. Whereas, if we acknowledge that the singularity requires no cause, then the evolution of humans was caused by a common ancestor, who evolved from the first bacterium, which evolved from self-catalyzing RNA from the environment, which came from the amino acids in the early ocean, which came from the makeup of the early Earth, which came from materials created by . . . the Big Bang.

If my opponent throws out causality, then I win: the singularity requires no cause. If he continues to require causality, I still win because the question of "what caused God to exist" is unanswerable.

{{{ Verbal diarrhea }}}

My opponent is all over the place, talking about BGV theorem, quantum gravity, and the Hawking-Hartle Theory. BGV theorem just predicts that the universe must have a beginning, since inflation causes relative velocities to decrease - moving back through time, relative velocities increase. But they cannot increase past the speed of light; thus, the universe has a beginning. Loop quantum gravity and HH theory predict that the universe was created when a previous universe collapsed. These theories are not accepted by most physicists today, including Hawking himself. HH Theory predicts that the Universe will, at some point, stop expanding and collapse in on itself again. So nothing my opponent says here disproves the singularity. And even if he did, then he's disproving God because if God created the universe, he must have created it out of nothing, not something.

{{{ Issue 3: Even losing is winning }}}

Even if I lose my arguments explaining the Big Bang, I still win. In science, if one explanation is inadequate, we search for a new one. We don't give up and impute God. It's quite possible that a Grand Unified Theory will explain every objection my opponent has without requiring us to resort to God. Physics is still in its infancy; there are many things it has yet to explain. It is not as established a science as biology. There are still major revolutions in thought in physics every few decades, as we make new discoveries. So I don't even have to win 100% what caused the Big Bang to prove that imputing God is unscientific.

{{{ The Argument from Fine-Tuning }}}

My opponent doesn't respond to any of my objections. Since we exist, we shouldn't be surprised that we don't see features of the Universe that are inconsistent with our existence. Highly improbable events occur. Given the number of sperm and ovum, our births are all highly improbably events. You can't "work backwards" from a highly improbable event because the event has already occurred, so your chance calculations are irrelevant.

And given we don't have a Grand Unified Theory, we don't really know whether things like the Cosmological constant are "highly improbable" or inevitable, given other laws of physics. We still don't really understand what causes the Cosmological constant. Other "constants" from fine tuning, like the distance of the Earth from the sun, are inevitable given the number of solar systems in an infinite universe.

Without fine-tuning, my opponent has no "evidence" for God. Everything else is an appeal to ignorance, arguing that since there are holes in other theories, God must be the explanation.

{{{ Disembodied mind }}}

My opponent keeps using double talk. He asserts science is really about philosophy and explanatory power. Then he says, "I don't have to explain how a non-material mind can interact with the material world." And he keeps claiming we don't understand where gravity comes from. **Gravity comes from matter bending space-time.**

He also never answers the objections that an all powerful mind would need to be infinitely big (an infinite number of neurons for an infinite number of neurons) and infinitely small (so different parts of the mind could take zero time to interact with each other).

{{{ All powerful }}}

My opponent keeps confusing the infinite potential of human knowledge with an all knowing God.

{{{ Life from non-life }}}

My opponent clearly doesn't understand evolution if he says "you need to program the cell on how to evolve." Mutations and variation happen naturally, then natural selection takes hold in determining which traits survive. This does not require design.


Nothing my opponent does is scientific. He claims that all of neurology is wrong because "correlation isn't causation." He demands to *see* life evolve from non-life before his eyes. He claims that Wikipedia proves that God is in line with the scientific method. Hogwash.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by tejretics 3 years ago
Just saw this debate while searching "God hypothesis" on Google. @Bluesteel, the "quantum fluctuation" argument IS the causeless argument. If the zero-energy universe hypothesis is correct (which is likely), then quantum mechanics calls for a different interpretation of BGV theorem wherein the quantum vacuum existed eternally, the energy for which was created ex nihilo via. gravity and scalar energy, thus with a net value of zero. This would trigger the creation of a particle and an antiparticle (typically theorized to be an electron and a positron) that annihilate to release the energy to create a vacuum fluctuation. Such fluctuations would have been common, and one such quantum fluctuation released enough energy to create an expansive singularity that became the universe. Great debate anyway!
Posted by ADT_Clone 6 years ago
My problem with the debate is this statement from the Pro:

"I am arguing that the God Hypothesis is a supported scientific explanation for the origins of existence. I adjusted my hypothesis from previous debates to more accurately fit the data."

That defeats the purpose of a hypothesis. If you fit your hypothesis to the data, OF COURSE you will meet the hypothesis. You don't learn anything, and there is nothing scientific about it. You're doing the same thing that every other person who believes in a God does, simply asserting that God created everything.

And for the benefit of the debate:

"In addition, Even if we are just a tiny part of a so-called "multi-verse" with another version of space-time that follow different laws of nature, their theorem would STILL require an absolute beginning from this multi-verse as well."

If it was a theorem, it would have had to be proven true. As far as I know, scientists have not observed or gained any definite evidence for the existence of a multi-verse, therefore at this time it is a theory, though mainly a hypothesis.
Posted by akahdrin 6 years ago
Impossible to win for the pro. There is nothing scientific about faith and you will lose by default.
Posted by sensibletheism909 6 years ago
I'm a bit confused as to the parameters of the debate, are you desiring to argue over what type of hypothesis God is as an explanation of the universe, or whether God is a good or perhaps the best explanation of the universe?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Kinesis 6 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con employed more convincing arguments throughout, despite making the occasional dubious claim (such as that simultaneous cause/effect cannot occur). ken suffered from appealing to obsolete science throughout, and also for steadily sliding further and further into philosophical arguments. His arguments for the conclusion that the creator had the omni-characteristics were very weak and Con pointed out the problems with them correctly.
Vote Placed by Microsuck 6 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Comments (Note, RFD will be up this afternoon)