The Instigator
janetsanders733
Pro (for)
Losing
9 Points
The Contender
Sargon
Con (against)
Winning
13 Points

The KCA is a Sound Argument

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Sargon
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/16/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,297 times Debate No: 46071
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (18)
Votes (5)

 

janetsanders733

Pro

I will be arguing that the Kalam Cosmological Arguement is sound. My opponent will be arguing that it's not sound. I would also like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate.

Round 1: Acceptance
Round 2: Opening Arguement
Round 3: Rebuttals
Round 4: Conclusion
Sargon

Con

Achtung!

Thanks to Janet Sanders for challenging me to this debate so quickly after I requested. I look forward to a civil and intellectually interesting debate with a new, up-and-coming theist like JS. Before I accept this debate and turn the next round over to JS, I'm going to define a few key terms in this debate.

Logical soundness-all of the premises in the argument are true and the argument is logically valid

Logical validity--the truth of the premises necessarily entails the truth of the conclusion

God--the uncaused, personal Creator of the universe who
sans the universe is beginningless, immaterial, timeless, spaceless, changeless, and enormously powerful.

Necessary condition--refers to the necessary conditions for something to take place.
It is necessary to be in the United States in order to visit Kansas.

Sufficient causation--refers to conditions that will necessarily lead to something else, once those conditions happen. In Newtonian physics, given the conditions of X at T1, you can determine the conditions of X at T2.

Efficient cause--that which brings something into being. A chef is the efficient cause of the food he makes.

Begins to exist--e
comes into being at t if and only if (i) e exists at t, (ii) t is the first time at which e exists, (iii) there is no state of affairs in the actual world in which e exists timelessly, and (iv) e’s existing at t is a tensed fact.

With that, let's begin!




Debate Round No. 1
janetsanders733

Pro


Again, I would like to thank my opponent for that warm welcoming! I will now go ahead and begin my opening argument down here below.



The KCA goes something like this[1]:



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

  2. 2. The Universe began to exist.

  3. 3. Therefore, the Universe has a cause.


Premise 1: Metaphysics proves that something can’t come from nothing. If something can come from nothing, then why don’t we see this happening all the time in reality? If nothing can produce something, then that also means that there can be no potentiality since there is no a priori. In reality and the world we live in, we experience things that begin to exist have causes. There is always some sort of purpose for something that comes into existence.


Premise 2: This one is very much agreed upon by philosophers and cosmologists. One argument is from induction. Using the Second Law of Thermodynamics which says that in any closed system the entropy of the system will either remain constant or increase, in the nineteenth and 20th century, scientist had begun applying this law to the entire Universe. Their conclusion was that if you gave the Universe enough time it would eventually come to a state of equilibrium and suffer heat death. The problem with this conclusion is that it raises a question and that is: If the Universe is eternal, then why has it not yet experienced heat death? Astrophysical evidence confirms that the Universe will expand forever, and in the process of expansion, it will grow cold and dark and dead. If in a finite amount of time the universe will achieve a cold, dark, dilute, and lifeless state, then why, if it has existed for infinite time, is it not now in a such a state? Cosmologists are now affirming what P. C. W. Davies said that “whether we like it or not we seemed forced to conclude that the universe's low entropy condition was simply "put in" as an initial condition at the moment of creation.”


The problem of free will[2]:


If everything is uncaused and 100% “determined”, then that means only one future exists. But, then how come we have the choice to choose A or B? As Carl Ginet has said (1990, 103), “our freedom can only be the freedom to add to the given past; and if determinism holds, then there is only one way that the given—the actual—past can be “added to.”


If I can lie(A) or tell the truth(B), then how is absolute determinism true? There must be a limited free will, for me to choose A or B.



Aristotle’s Four Causes[3][4]:


Humean causes are events, and so are their effects. Typically, it is substances that have causes. Aristotle gives 4 of these.


Material Cause: Out of what? This is where the physics come in.


Efficient Cause: Through what? This is the type of cause of the kalam gets to. An agent is the only entity that could initiate or cease a series of cause and effect relationships. This is known as agent causation.


Formal Cause: What form or essence?


Final Cause: For what purpose? This is the teleological argument.


The final cause of a natural object - a plant or an animal - is not a purpose, plan, or “intention.” Rather, it is whatever lies at the end of the regular series of developmental changes that typical specimens of a given species undergo. The final cause need not be a purpose that someone has in mind.


Ex: the telos or goal of an F is what embryonic, immature, or developing Fs are all tending to grow into. The telos or goal f a developing tiger is to be a tiger.


Aristotle says, things in nature happen “always or for the most part” –Ergo, God must be the reason for how a purpose develops.


Premise 3: Logically follows from Premise (1) and (2), and uncaused, personal Creator of the universe exists, who the universe is beginning-less, changeless, immaterial, timeless, space-less, and all powerful.


I now turn it over to Con:)



Sources:


[1] http://www.reasonablefaith.org...


[2] http://physics.about.com...


[3] http://sententias.org...


[4]http://plato.stanford.edu...
Sargon

Con

Achtung!


The Kalam Cosmological Argument


One does not claim to have completed a puzzle because they poured the pieces on the floor and said “Look, I have all the pieces!”. Similarly, one cannot claim to have a full argument because they made assertions without linking them to their premises. I will wait until the next round for Pro to connect “The problem of free will” and “Aristotle’s Four Causes” with the Kalam Cosmological Argument.


An audience member reading this may see it as absurd to deny the truth of the first premise. However, it’s been empirically demonstrated that the first premise is not intuitively true. The philosopher Wes Morriston conducted a survey of the philosophy faculty at Boulder, and ten out of sixteen responses stated that it was not obvious that everything which begins to exist must have a cause (http://tinyurl.com...
). The philosopher Quentin Smith states that “the majority of graduate and undergraduate students I've had in my classes think this principle is false” (http://tinyurl.com...). Given these findings, it is not clear why we should believe that the first premise of the KCA is obviously true.

Assume that the first premise is intuitively true. Even then, this intuition would not allow us to say that the beginning of the universe had to have a cause. Our rational faculties are bred by our experience and the experience of our evolutionary ancestors. Let’s look at the Big Bang singularity; The Big Bang singularity is a zero-dimensional point of infinite density, curvature, and temperature. Humans, at no point, have had any first-hand or evolutionary experience with a singularity of infinite density, curvature, and temperature. Our rational faculties, as something
bred by experience, cannot have anything to say about a Big Bang singularity, since nobody has ever experienced something so beyond the pale as the Big Bang singularity. Therefore, there is no justification for the proposition that “The beginning of the Big Bang singularity has a cause” from its obviousness to our faculties.

Suppose that the first premise of the argument is construed as a metaphysical intuition. The history of science shows that many things which were once metaphysical intuitions and thought of as necessarily true have turned out to be false. Science, specifically physics, has overthrown our intuitions about reality. For example, our intuition tells us that two events must be locally connected to have any causal effects on each other. This intuition is so strong that many take it to be metaphysically necessary. For example, we think that a shark in the Pacific Ocean cannot eat me if I am swimming in the Atlantic Ocean. However, experiments in quantum mechanics have destroyed this intuition. Experiments with photons by Alain Aspect in the 1980s (http://tinyurl.com...) demonstrated that two things can have causal influences with each other even if they are opposite sides of the universe. In the words of the physicist Brian Greene, “The outcome of what you do at one place can be linked with what happens at another place, even if nothing travels between the two locations--even if there isn’t enough time for anything to complete the journey between the two locations” (T
he Fabric of the Cosmos, pg 114-115). Science has shown that things which are construed as metaphysical intuition can actually end up being false given empirical data.

Pro argues that if something can come from nothing, then we should expect to see things like tigers and bears popping out of nothing all of the time. We don’t see this, so something cannot come from nothing. The answer to this is that the first premise is false; if something can come from nothing, we should
not expect to see things popping out of nothing all the time. The reason for this is that human beings occupy space-time and live under physical laws. If a tiger spontaneously appeared during a William Lane Craig debate, then it would have came from being. The reason we don’t see tigers and bears coming into being from non-being is that we occupy space-time, and that’s being. It’s simply impossible for us to experience a tiger coming from non-being, because everything we experience takes place in space-time (being). Furthermore, the anti-Kalamist can state that the Big Bang could have came from nothing due to the absence of physical laws, but we do not see something coming from nothing today because physical laws exist. The Big Bang singularity is an instant at which all physical laws break down (S. W. Hawking, Breakdown of Predictability in Gravitational Collapse,' Physical Review D, 14 (1976), 2460). However, our everyday life is governed by the laws of physics. We can therefore assert that the universe came from nothing because of the lack of physical laws, while explaining the fact that things don’t pop into being from nothing today by pointing out that physical laws prevent such a thing from happening.

Pro states that we experience things coming into being having causes, so everything that begins to exist has a cause. This is clearly an attempt at inductively justifying the first premise. I'm shocked that he does this without noting any of the problems with this method. I can use inductive generalization to disprove the theory of relativity! In all of my experience, when an object in motion gets pushed, it travels faster. Therefore, I can make an inductive generalization that an object in motion goes faster when it’s pushed. Imagine a William Lane Craig book traveling at the speed of light. According to my inductive generalization, if I push the book, it will travel faster than the speed of light. This means that my inductive generalization has proven that an object can travel faster than the speed of light. If your warrant for P1 can be used to disprove one of the most confirmed theories in all of science, there’s something wrong with your warrant.


It is logically possible for the universe to have no cause
. I have already shown that the warrants Pro gives for the proposition that “everything that begins to exist has a cause” are insufficient. Therefore, it is entirely possible for the universe to have began without any cause.

It is logically possible for the universe to have caused itself to come into being
. This may seem absurd at first glance. As popular reasoning goes, "If something causes itself, doesn't it exist before it begins to exist?" I would agree that this type of self-causality is absurd. Something cannot cause itself to begin to exist before it begins existing. However, there is a different type of self-causality which does not fall into this absurdity. Suppose that the universe brings itself into being at an instantaneous moment; In other words, it causes itself at the same time it comes into being. One cannot object to this scenario on the basis that the universe exists before it causes itself, because there is no temporal gap in the scenario I am describing. Therefore, there is a logically possible situation where the universe brings itself into being.

The universe could have been brought into being by infinite simultaneous causation of elementary particles.
Simultaneous causation is the idea that "the causal order must not be the temporal order because of the possibility of cause and effect being contemporaneous." X and Y have such a relationship if X, the cause, and Y, the effect, happen at the same instantaneous moment. The possibility of simultaneous causation demonstrates how the universe could have came into being. The earliest instant of the universe was simultaneous causation of elementary particles. For example, a given quark is caused to exist by a given electron, which is caused to exist by a given quark, ad infinitum, at the earliest instant of the universe. This causation is instantaneous, so so all of these cause and effect relations happen at the same moment in time. Elementary particles therefore have an explanation with reference to other elementary particles. Since all physical things are reducible to interactions of elementary particles, an explanation of elementary particles in the first state entails an explanation of everything within the first state. This hypothesis makes predictions which are confirmed by physics. It predicts that particles are able to instantaneously effect the conditions of other particles. This is proven by the Aspect experiments mentioned before. His 1986 experiment, "Experiments on Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen-type Correlations with Pairs of Visible Photons', published in Quantum Concepts in Space and Time, found that "If a photon x is measured to be in a 'spin up' state, this simultaneously causes a spatially distant photon y to be in a 'spin down' state". The philosopher of physics Quentin Smith writes that "Alain Aspect's confirmation of Bell's theorem can plausibly be taken as confirming the existence of simultaneous or instantaneous causation across arbitrarily large spatial distances."(Ibid). It is therefore the case that particles can instantaneously change the states of other particles. It also predicts that space is infinite.This is entailed by inflationary Big Bang cosmology also entails that space is infinite. Alexander Vilenkin and Jaume Garriga published an article called 'Many worlds in one' in the journal Physics Review, and they conclude in their abstract that "generic prediction of inflation is that the thermalized region we inhabit is spatially infinite."

To conclude with the words of Quentin Smith, "This world exists nonnecessarily, improbably, and causelessly. It exists for absolutely no reason at all. It is inexplicably and stunningly actual. The impact of this captivated realisation upon me is overwhelming. I am completely stunned. I take a few dazed steps in the dark meadow, and fall among the flowers. I lie stupefied, whirling without comprehension in this world through numberless worlds other than this one."
Debate Round No. 2
janetsanders733

Pro

I will wait until the next round for Pro to connect “The problem of free will” and “Aristotle’s Four Causes” with the Kalam Cosmological Argument.”
I would like to apologize to my opponent and the audience if I didn’t explain Aristotle and the problem of free will well. I will now go ahead and explain how they are both relevant to this debate down here below.
Aristotle argued that there must be a cause for the Universe since it began to exist. He then gave four question to explain each cause 1) material cause 2) Efficient cause 3) Formal cause 4)Final cause. I linked that to show that God must be the final cause of all things material/immaterial.
Aristotle posited an underlying ousia (essence or substance) of which the Universe was composed, and it was for this reason the ousia that the Prime Mover organized and set into motion. The Prime Mover did not organize matter physically, but was instead a being who constantly thought about thinking itself, and who organized the Cosmos by being itself the object of "aspiration or desire". Aristotle felt that the Prime mover was a "thinking on thinking", an eternal process of pure thought.
I was using free will to show how someone has the ability to distinguish a over b.[1]

The philosopher Wes Morriston conducted a survey of the philosophy faculty at Boulder, and ten out of sixteen responses stated that it was not obvious that everything which begins to exist must have a cause (http://tinyurl.com......). The philosopher Quentin Smith states that “the majority of graduate and undergraduate students I've had in my classes think this principle is false” (http://tinyurl.com......). Given these findings, it is not clear why we should believe that the first premise of the KCA is obviously true.”
While I do agree that a survey is verifiable, the survey was taken under one University and one Philosopher, along with students of his. If my opponent had cited a survey of let’s say a majority of philosophers who have published work on this subject, and if they had agreed with him that not everything that begins to exist has a cause, then that would be more credible.
Assume that the first premise is intuitively true. Even then, this intuition would not allow us to say that the beginning of the universe had to have a cause. Our rational faculties are bred by our experience and the experience of our evolutionary ancestors. Let’s look at the Big Bang singularity; The Big Bang singularity is a zero-dimensional point of infinite density, curvature, and temperature. Humans, at no point, have had any first-hand or evolutionary experience with a singularity of infinite density, curvature, and temperature. Our rational faculties, as something bred by experience, cannot have anything to say about a Big Bang singularity, since nobody has ever experienced something so beyond the pale as the Big Bang singularity. Therefore, there is no justification for the proposition that “The beginning of the Big Bang singularity has a cause” from its obviousness to our faculties. Suppose that the first premise of the argument is construed as a metaphysical intuition. The history of science shows that many things which were once metaphysical intuitions and thought of as necessarily true have turned out to be false. Science, specifically physics, has overthrown our intuitions about reality.”

How can there be potentiality without a causal agent? for a casual event to occur, you would need potentiality and an agent or object to actualize it. For that reason, something that comes into being spontaneously from nothing is metaphysically impossible. Non-being has no potentiality, attributes, properties,etc. It is absolutely zero if something has an absolute beginning of existence, there must exist an actual being which produces the thing in existence.

I would propose that Ex Nihilo, nihil fit, and Creatio ex nihil are both compatible since God created the Universe from nothing. He is the cause for the beginning of the Universe. This makes more sense metaphysically and logically since it implies potentiality.[2]




“Pro argues that if something can come from nothing, then we should expect to see things like tigers and bears popping out of nothing all of the time. We don’t see this, so something cannot come from nothing. The answer to this is that the first premise is false; if something can come from nothing, we should not expect to see things popping out of nothing all the time.”
Actually, I’m saying that we should just see things appear randomly all the time.
“The reason for this is that human beings occupy space-time and live under physical laws. If a tiger spontaneously appeared during a William Lane Craig debate, then it would have came from being.”

So the tiger came from itself? How is that not a self-contradiction ?

“Furthermore, the anti-Kalamist can state that the Big Bang could have came from nothing due to the absence of physical laws, but we do not see something coming from nothing today because physical laws exist. The Big Bang singularity is an instant at which all physical laws break down). However, our everyday life is governed by the laws of physics. We can therefore assert that the universe came from nothing because of the lack of physical laws, while explaining the fact that things don’t pop into being from nothing today by pointing out that physical laws prevent such a thing from happening.”

Hawking and Mlodinow advocate what they call a “top down” approach to this question. The idea here is to begin with our presently observed universe characterized by the standard model of particle physics and then calculate, given the no boundary condition, the probability of the various histories allowed by quantum physics to reach our present state
The top down approach calculates the probability of our observable universe given the no boundary condition. The top down approach doesn’t calculate the probability that the no boundary condition should hold but takes it for granted. Such a condition is not metaphysically or physically necessary. If the universe came into being uncaused from nothing, it could have had any sort of conceivable spatiotemporal configuration.
Remember nothingness, or non-being, has no properties or constraints and is governed by no physical laws. If there were was a lack of physical laws, then there was not potentiality to for it to do anything at all in it’s state.[3]






The universe could have been brought into being by infinite simultaneous causation of elementary particles.”

How can it be an infinite causation? Why can't the cause and effect exist at the same time in an asymmetric dependency relation? For example, a heavy chandelier hanging on a chain from the ceiling. The ceiling and chain hold up the chandelier; the chandelier and chain don't support the ceiling.
My opponent also presents some other problems as well with the idea of an infinite simultaneous causation. Suppose that C is the Cause, and E is Effect. If C were to vanish before the time at which E is produced, would E nevertheless come into being? No. If time is continuous or infinite, then there will be a lapse or interval between C and E appearance/dissaperance. How could the Effect “E” come into being when there’s no cause to produce it? This is what makes my opponent’s argument all the more questionable.



Sources:
[1] https://www.princeton.edu...
[2] http://www.bethinking.org...
[3] A Brief History of Time, Stephen Hawking, pg.136
Sargon

Con

Achtung!


I have to make two important notes before getting into the main substance of Pro’s argument.

First, Pro has miscited Hawking. Pro states that nothing has no potentiality to do anything, and then cites page one hundred and thirty six of A Brief History of Time as support for this. As a person who owns a copy of a book, I re-read this page to see if his citation was accurate. It turns out that page one hundred and thirty six is a discussion about inflation, and has nothing to do with Pro’s assertion. I have a link to a PDF file of the book in order to check the soundness of my claims (http://www.fisica.net...)


Secondly, Pro has extensively plagiarized from William Lane Craig’s Reasonable Faith website.
Pro’s entire 776 character paragraph starting with “Hawking and Mlodinow advocate” is taken from a William Lane Craig article (http://www.reasonablefaith.org...). Pro makes no attempt at giving William Lane Craig credit for these words, thus passing them off as his own, constituting plagiarism.

Pro argues that god is the final cause of the universe. I’m not sure how this sentence makes any sense. In Aristotle’s metaphysics, a final cause is the end purpose of something. For example, the final cause of a dinner table is for people to put food on it. Stating “god is the final cause of the universe” is synonymous with stating “the end result of the universe is god”, which makes little sense from a theistic perspective, because the universe does not give rise to god in classical theism. The final cause of a dinner table is putting food on it because that is the purpose of building the table, but would anyone seriously suggest that god is a
result of the universe, rather than the cause? We should also remember that the KCA is a debate about the existence of the universe, not the purpose of the universe, so final causes are irrelevant to the resolution anyway.

Pro agrees that the studies I cited regarding premise one are verifiable. It is therefore established that the causal principle is not obvious to a large amount of people. This is sufficient to make my point, because it now clear that the first premise cannot be established on the grounds that it is obvious or self-evident.

Pro has failed to respond to many important arguments against the first premise. First, he has failed to answer the argument that we have no experience of the Big Bang singularity, so our rational faculties, as something created by experience, cannot be used to tell us whether or not the Big Bang singularity had to have a cause. Second, he failed to respond to the argument that many of our metaphysical intuitions that we took to be necessarily true have been disproven by scientific evidence. Finally, he failed to respond to my argument against the soundness of inductive reasoning. This leaves Con with three powerful reasons against the first premise.


Pro asked why we don’t see things randomly popping into being if something can come from nothing; I answered this argument in two ways.

The first way I answered the question was by pointing out that we live in space-time, which is being. When we say that something came from nothing, it means that something came from absolute-non being. Considering this, it’s perfectly obvious why we don’t see tigers coming out of
nothing all the time. The simple reason is that if a tiger popped into being in front of us, it would not have come from nothing, because there is existent space-time, so it would never be a true nothing. Again, how can we experience a tiger coming from non-being if we occupy being? I have to admit that I don’t understand Pro’s rebuttal. What about my argument entails that a tiger can cause itself to come into being? Pro never explains why, so I have to dismiss his rebuttal due to a lack of argumentation.

The second way I answered this question was that the atheist can hold that the Big Bang singularity came from nothing due to the absence of physical laws, but we do not see something coming from nothing today because there are physical laws. Pro’s rebuttal is to (plagiarize) summarize Hawking’s top-down cosmology, but he never connects this to the argument I was making.

Finally, if we are to understand the word
random to mean that something happens at a moment in time which cannot be explained in terms of previous causal conditions, then science has shown that random things do occur. There are random events in this definition because of the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, which states that the position and velocity of a particle cannot be precisely known at one moment in time. This means that if we have a particle X at T1, we cannot precisely determine its position and velocity, entailing that our predictions of the conditions of particle X at T2 must be indeterministic. Therefore, something happens at a moment in time (T2) which cannot be explained in terms of previous causal conditions (T1). (Quentin Smith advances a similar argument on pg 121 of Theism, Atheism, and Big Bang Cosmology.)

Pro continues to contradict himself when he talks about nothing. He first states that nothing has no properties, but then states that it has “no potentialities”, “no constraints”, “is governed by physical laws” and gives it the property of being that which god created the universe out of. Pro is giving properties to nothing while stating that it has no properties!

Pro is actually proving that something can come from nothing. By stating that nothing has no properties, he is also committing himself to the proposition that “Nothing does not have the property of being incapable of producing something”, entailing that nothing
is capable of producing something. (Of course, he could argue that nothing lacks the property of being able to produce something, but my point here is that his reasoning cuts both ways.)

Moving to physical cosmology, Pro has once again failed to answer the entirety of my case. I presented an argument which demonstrated that there is a sense in which the universe could have caused itself to come into being in a way which is not self-contradictory. Pro never addressed this argument.

Considering Pro’s failure to respond to my all of my arguments against the first premise, we should also keep in mind that I have established the plausibility of the universe coming into being without cause.
I also brought about a scenario that explains the first instant of the universe in terms of an infinite amount of simultaneous causation among elementary particles, providing two predictions of this hypothesis that have been confirmed by experimental evidence, all of which was ignored by Pro.

I'm not sure about the remaining points that Pro makes in regards to this argument. Pro is talking about lapses or intervals between simultaneous cause and effect relationships. The word simultaneous means that it is ocurring at an instantaneous moment, entailing that there are no lapses or intervals, but everything happens at the same time. It's simply impossible to have temporal intervals or lapses of time when talking about simultaneous causation.

Since I have some extra room, I will briefly address some arguments brought up by Pro in support of P2.


We can represent the beginning of the universe as a Cantor set. A cantor set involves taking an interval [0,1], and cutting out the middle thirds so that we have two intervals, [0, 1/3] and [2/3, 1]. If we imagine the beginning of the universe as the interval [0,1], then we can see that the universe is brought into being by these intervals. The interval [2/3,1] is caused by the interval 2/3, which is caused by the interval [0,1/3]. This constitutes n=1 of a Cantor set. Now, the theist can ask what causes the interval [0, 1/3]. The answer is to repeat the same process with the interval [0, 1/3], taking two intervals with a length of 1/9th at n=2. Since this process can be repeated until n=infinity, the atheist can provide an explanation of the beginning of the universe by stating that each interval of space-time is caused by another interval. (See video for an introduction to the Cantor set.)


The beginning of the universe and thermodynamics. Pro tries to use the laws of thermodynamics to prove that the universe had to have a beginning. Firstly, there are models of an infinite universe which are consistent with the laws of thermodynamics (http://wwwphy.princeton.edu...). Secondly, physics simply can't establish whether or not the laws of entropy would apply to the early history of our infinite universe, so in the words of Wes Morriston, "The best we can conclude from this is that the history of entropy had a beginning". ("Doubts about the Kalam Cosmological Argument")

Finally, Pro overstates the support for the second premise when he says that it's "very much agreed upon by philosophers and cosmologists". While it is true that most cosmologists accept the Big Bang theory, this is different from saying that most cosmologists accept that the universe had a beginning. The Big Bang theory is the result of general relativity, and general relativity is not a complete explanation of the universe, as it has yet to be married with quantum mechanics. Models which combined quanutm mechanics and general relativity are called quantum gravity models. Some quantum gravity models have a beginning of the universe, and others do not; Physics has not shown either class to be right or wrong. When we look at the models of physics which are complete explanations of the universe, there is simply no consensus as to whether or not the universe had a beginning.

In conclusion, Pro drops too many points and arguments, plagiarzes, miscites, and overstates the case for his argument. Vote Con.


Vale




Debate Round No. 3
janetsanders733

Pro

In conclusion, I think we've seen a pretty good debate here. I think it's safe to say that everything we've seen come into existence has a cause. I've made several decent arguements for thinking that things must have causes if the start into existence. There must be something prior to their existence in order for them to have pontieality and a purpose. I want to thank my opponent for accepting this debate.
Sargon

Con

Achtung!

Although I prefer to say more, I'll keep this round as brief as Pro.

Conduct

As I showed in my previous round, Pro plagiarized 776 characters of his last round from William Lane Craig.

Pro: "Hawking and Mlodinow advocate what they call a “top down” approach to this question. The idea here is to begin with our presently observed universe characterized by the standard model of particle physics and then calculate, given the no boundary condition, the probability of the various histories allowed by quantum physics to reach our present state
The top down approach calculates the probability of our observable universe given the no boundary condition. The top down approach doesn’t calculate the probability that the no boundary condition should hold but takes it for granted. Such a condition is not metaphysically or physically necessary. If the universe came into being uncaused from nothing, it could have had any sort of conceivable spatiotemporal configuration."

William Lane Craig: "Hawking and Mlodinow advocate what they call a “top down” approach to this question. The idea here is to begin with our presently observed universe characterized by the standard model of particle physics and then calculate, given the no boundary condition, the probability of the various histories allowed by quantum physics to reach our present state. The most probable history represents the history of our observable universe. Hawking and Mlodinow claim that “in this view, the universe appeared spontaneously from nothing” (p. 136). By “spontaneously” they seem to mean without a cause. But how does that follow from the model? The top down approach calculates the probability of our observable universe giventhe no boundary condition. The top down approach doesn’t calculate the probability that the no boundary condition should hold but takes it for granted. Such a condition is not metaphysically or physically necessary. If the universe came into being uncaused from nothing, it could have had any sort of conceivable spatiotemporal configuration. For nothingness, or non-being, has no properties or constraints and is governed by no physical laws. Physics only begins at the “South Pole” in the no boundary model. There isn’t anything in the model that implies that that point came to be without a cause. Indeed, the idea that being could arise without a cause from non-being seems metaphysically absurd."
(http://www.reasonablefaith.org...)

Pro failed to answer to these allegations, and I believe that the evidence against him is clear.

Sources

Pro tried to use a completely bogus citation. Pro states that nothing has no potentiality to do anything, and then cites page one hundred and thirty six of A Brief History of Time as support for this. As I showed in my previous round, this citation is completely made up, as the page cited has nothing to do with Pro's assertion.

Argument

Pro has not established the first premise as true, so it follows that the argument is not sound, entailing a Con vote.

- He failed to answer the argument that we have no experience of the Big Bang singularity, so our rational faculties, as something created by experience, cannot be used to tell us whether or not the Big Bang singularity had to have a cause
- He failed to respond to the argument that many of our metaphysical intuitions that we took to be necessarily true have been disproven by scientific evidence
- He failed to respond to my argument against the soundness of inductive reasoning

It follows that P1 is unsubstantiated.

In regards to the second premise...

- He failed to respond to my argument that the universe could have been self-caused.

It follows that even if the universe had a cause, it was not god.

Thanks to JS for participating in this debate with me. I enjoyed the opportunity to present new arguments against the Kalam, and I look forward to interacting with him in the future.
Debate Round No. 4
18 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
@MysticEgg

My last post should read:

Glad you agree. And, it is easy to be original and to properly quote all the information you are taking out of context, on any subject. Even on politics, you can write your own words and not plagiarize. You need to quote what you take out of context. I wouldn't care if he would quote everything and cite the source, but he does not.
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
@MysticEgg

Glad you agree. And, it is easy to be original and to properly quote all the information you are taking out of context, on any subject. Even on politics, you can't write your own words and not plagiarize. You need to quote what you take out of context. I wouldn't care if he would quote everything and cite the source, but he does not.

But, I have reviewed all Sargon's debates, and he plagiarizes in all of them. He actually cuts and pastes the same arguments and evidence in each debate. Here is what I posted earlier:

"I see that you have had this debate 4 other times and are using the same arguments and evidence; how original. You have had 6 debates about God not existing where you use the same evidence. And, you have had two about Neo-Lorentzian ether, again where you use the same arguments and evidence. So, 10 of your 20 debates are repeats. And, much of your evidence is cherry picked and plagiarized."

"This is how you move up the debate challenge ladder; you have many of the same debates over and over again, with the same people voting for you in many."

Sargon gets most of his material from William Lane Craig, a religious fanatic, who is not a scientist.

I see Sargon has gotten another one of his friends to vote for him again, again, again, again. The cheating at this site is amazing. What is funny is the last voter is a Christian - Protestant, but he votes for Sargon.
Posted by MysticEgg 3 years ago
MysticEgg
I agree, mostly, with GWL. However, I don't believe Sargon was plagiarising for the sake of it. It's difficult to be original on things one doesn't understand. Take politics as another example. We all have political leanings, but our "arguments" to defend them have already been presented by other people thousands of times.

Therefore, GWL, with that logic, you should be voting neutrally, as janet was just as guilty as Sargon.
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
@janetsanders733

I am surprised you haven"t figured it out.

Winning debates at DDO or anywhere for that matter has nothing to do with who has the better arguments or evidence, except in live debates judged by professionals or online debates judged by professionals.

All these online debate sites are pretty much the same. Whoever has the most voters on their side pre-debate wins; the arguments and evidence are usually secondary. Confirmation bias causes people to ignore or discount any evidence or arguments that disagree with their pre-debate opinions or beliefs.

If you would have had ten of your Christian " Baptist friends vote on this debate, you would have won.

There were only 3 voters on this debate. I am an atheist and voted for you because Sargon is a plagiarizer and never makes his own arguments; otherwise I would have voted against you. Magic8000 is his friend and always votes for him. I also think, not sure, that Magic8000 is an agnostic or atheist. So, most likely he wouldn"t have voted for you anyway.

I am not sure yet why johnlubba voted for Sargon, but he appears clueless about Sargon"s modus operandi, which I talked about in my RFD. Not sure why johnlubba would state:

"Sargon is the most formidable debater on this site in my opinion. I wholeheartedly disagree with his worldview but find his terribly complex arguments outstanding."

Sargon have never presented his own complex arguments on anything in his life; he is not that smart. So, I have no clue why anyone would think he is formidable. He likes to present other people"s arguments, e.g., William Lane Craig and Q. Smith.

Very few voters vote for debates where they have no pre-debate opinions/beliefs. This is called Confirmation bias. These people will never vote against their pre-existing beliefs.

I created a forum on this subject: Confirmation Bias Cannot be Beaten! It is worth reading my Post #1.

http://www.debate.org...
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
@Sargon

I see that you have had this debate 4 other times and are using the same arguments and evidence; how original. You have had 6 debates about God not existing where you use the same evidence. And, you have had two debates about Neo-Lorentzian ether, again where you use the same arguments and evidence. So, 10 of your 20 debates are repeats. And, much of your evidence is cherry picked and plagiarized.

This is how you move up the debate challenge ladder; you have many of the same debates over and over again, with the same people voting for you in many.

How wonderful!
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
RFD " Part I

Sargon you are guilty of plagiarism; therefore you lose the entire debate and I give all 6 points to your opponent, except spelling and grammar that are a tie.

You do this all the time in all your debates. I don"t know if you cheat on purpose or just don"t know that it is cheating. Maybe it is because of your young age and you have no clue about honesty, IMHO.

You state in round 1 without quoting William Lane Craig:

"God--the uncaused, personal Creator of the universe who sans the universe is beginningless, immaterial, timeless, spaceless, changeless, and enormously powerful."

That is taken almost word for word from what is stated by William Lane Craig at his "Reasonable Faith" site.

"Is the Cause of the Universe an Uncaused, Personal Creator of the Universe, who sans the Universe Is Beginningless, Changeless, Immaterial, Timeless, Spaceless, and Enormously Powerful?"

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org...

Sargon takes so much from William Lane Craig and Quentin Smith out of context without quoting it, or what Quentin Smith states that William Lane Craig stated out of context without quoting it e.g., Two Ways to Prove Atheism (1968), it is hard to figure out if Sargon actually has written any of his own arguments.

This appears be his modus operandi for all his debates.

Sargon"s link to a study done at the University of Colorado Boulder is a dead link that.
http://www.colorado.edu...)
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
RFD " Part II

Sargon states "The philosopher Quentin Smith states that "the majority of graduate and undergraduate students I've had in my classes think this principle is false" (http://tinyurl.com......). Given these findings, it is not clear why we should believe that the first premise of the KCA is obviously true."

That link takes you to an article by Quentin Smith, "Two Ways to Prove Atheism (1996)," which states nothing about the majority of his undergraduate or graduates classes.

So, did Sargon get the link wrong or is he again confused and dishonest?

Then Sargon states

"Secondly, Pro has extensively plagiarized from William Lane Craig"s Reasonable Faith website. Pro"s entire 776 character paragraph starting with "Hawking and Mlodinow advocate" is taken from a William Lane Craig article (http://www.reasonablefaith.org......). Pro makes no attempt at giving William Lane Craig credit for these words, thus passing them off as his own, constituting plagiarism."

That is so funny coming from the biggest plagiarist at this site, Sargon himself!
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
Achtung! How cute, now you are now using German words instead of Latin words to open your arguments. Is that what young kids do in high school now?
Posted by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
@Sargon,

I see your friend Magic8000 is voting for you again, again, and again. In-friend voting bias is rampant at this site. That along with confirmation bias makes winning debates meaningless.

I created a forum to disprove your nonsense about ether, but you have not posted to it yet Sargon:
Neo-Lorentzian Ether Does Not Exist
http://www.debate.org...

Since you don't allow PMs or messages on your profile, the only way to communicate my new forum to you is to find a debate you are in. So, here I am.

This debate seems to be from the same ilk as your "The Neo-Lorentzian Interpretation is better than the Minkowski interpretation" and "A Neo-Lorentzian Ether Exists" debates, where Magic8000 voted for you too. Again, in-friend voting bias is rampant at DDO.

I guess I will have to read your arguments and sources in this debate to see if you are using a religious fanatic like William Lane Craig as your main source of evidence, or some other meaningless source.
Posted by janetsanders733 3 years ago
janetsanders733
I believe I could have done better if I had not procrastinated and waited till the last hour to post my rebuttals....lol.

This debate obviously goes to Con since he took his time and thoroughly argued his case against the KCA.

Maybe in the future we can debate again over some topic concerning Atheism/Theism.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by philochristos 3 years ago
philochristos
janetsanders733SargonTied
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Reasons for voting decision: I'm surprised this is tied so far. Con seemed to dominate this debate. From the very beginning, Con put Pro on the defensive, and Pro never managed to salvage his premises from Con's criticisms. As Con pointed out, Pro ignored a several of his arguments that, if sound, would refute Pro's premises. That leaves Pro's burden of proof unmet. Con also showed that Pro plagiarized, so conduct to Con. Both debaters need to work on their grammar.
Vote Placed by Jackthemarine86 3 years ago
Jackthemarine86
janetsanders733SargonTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Both sides presented their arguments well, but I still lean to the arguments presented by Pro. Frankly, I find it very difficult to grasp the concept that something came from nothing - verses the alternative. When you think about the ludicrous statement of that argument, it makes belief in miracles or Creationism mere chicken-feed in comparison. Secondly, intuition and empirical go hand-in-hand in the scientific community. The only process that remains empirical is the second part - Deducing patterns of science. Even Albert Einstein said, "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society which honors the servant, but has forgotten the gift."
Vote Placed by GWL-CPA 3 years ago
GWL-CPA
janetsanders733SargonTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: See RFD in Comments
Vote Placed by johnlubba 3 years ago
johnlubba
janetsanders733SargonTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro didn't respond to Cons objections thoroughly enough, Con applied a strong case and Pro couldn't seem to tackle the depth of the points Con introduced in the debate. arguments to Con.
Vote Placed by Magic8000 3 years ago
Magic8000
janetsanders733SargonTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments