The Instigator
Rational_Thinker9119
Pro (for)
Winning
17 Points
The Contender
KeytarHero
Con (against)
Losing
5 Points

The Kalam Cosmological Argument is not logically sound

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Post Voting Period
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after 4 votes the winner is...
Rational_Thinker9119
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/4/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,892 times Debate No: 21704
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (74)
Votes (4)

 

Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

First Round for accpetance
KeytarHero

Con

I accept this debate, and would like to thank Pro for instituting this debate.

The essence of the Kalam Cosmological Argument is based on the principle of causality and can be framed as follows:

1. Everything that had a beginning had a cause.
2. The universe had a beginning.
3. Therefore, the universe had a cause.

As Pro is the instigator and making the claim as to the alleged lack of soundness of the Kalam Cosmological Argument, he bears the burden of proof. The argument is definitely valid, as the conclusion follows logically from the premises. For the argument to be sound, all of the premises must be true. Pro bears the burden of proof to show why one or both of the premises are untrue in order to win the debate.

I look forward to a thought-provoking and interesting discussion.
Debate Round No. 1
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

Thank you for accepting the debate. 

However in this debate I don't need to show that a premise is false, only that it is not logically sound.

Somebody can make an unfalsifiable statement, that doesn't mean the statement is backed up by anything scientific or meaningful.

The Kalam Cosmological Argument


Classical argument


P1: Everything that has a beginning of its existence has a cause
of its existence;

P2: The universe has a beginning of its existence;

P3: The universe has a cause of its existence.

P4: Since no scientific explanation can provide a causal account of the
origin of the universe, the cause must be personal


William Lane Craig's reformulated argument


P1: Whatever begins to exist must have an external cause.

P2: The universe began to exist.

P3: Therefore, the universe must have an external cause.

P4: This cause is the God of Classical Theism, and is a personal being, because he chose to create
the universe.

http://en.wikipedia.org...


Refuting the Kalam Cosmological Argument's claims




Rebutting Premise 1 (applies to both versions)

The problem with the first premise is that it is a completely basesless assertion. We have no
examples of things coming into existence that had a cause, only pre-existing things changing form or being
rearranged that have a cause.



Example 1:

Nothing a human being is composed of "began to exist" when a person was conceived,
a pre-existing sperm cell and egg cell change their state by combining. This process divides,
evolves, and enlarges into what we label a human being eventually. [1] The human body is mostly
made up of the six elements oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen calcium, and phosphorus [2],
all of which existed before the person in question.

Example 2:

The car you drive didn't "begin to exist", most of it was originally pre-existing steel, the steel was
ore, the ore was orginally dirt and so on and so forth.

Basically, a "car" is just a label we gave to something that is re-arranged pre-existing matter,
nothing actually began to exist when the car was made.


Re-Cap:

"Everything that begins to exist has a cause" (or any version of this) is a baseless claim, because we have
no examples of things beginning to exist which have causes.



Reasons To Believe Premise 1 Is False




We can actually indirectly observe virtual particle fluctuations actually popping in and out of
existence (possibly beginning to exist), due to The Casimir effect, which is a direct consequence of virtual
particles so we know they happen.
They seem to be spontaneous, random, and uncaused (this does not mean that they for sure don't
have a cause, but the way they behave inticates they most likely do not).


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

- Taner Edis. Department of Physics Truman State University Kirksville


Quantum effects are essentially uncaused, as far as is known, with several examples of violations
of Bell's inequalities [3].


Re-cap:

Virtual particles seem to begin to exist uncaused


Conclusion regarding Premise 1:


1) The premise is baselss because we have no examples of things that begin to exist that have causes,
we observe pre-existing things changing form and being rearranged that have causes.

2) One example of things that seem to "begin to exist" (for a short time) we can indirectly observe are virtual
particle fluctuations, which seem to be random, spontaneous, and uncaused as all the evidence demonstrates.


3) The first premise of the Kalam Cosmological Argument can be interpreted as baseless,
not sound, and false.


Rebutting Premise 2 (applies to both the classical, and reformulated arguments)

Theists use Big Bang cosmology to defend this premise, and while the universe as we know it did
have a beginning, there is no evidenece that the universe began to exist.

The Singularity contained infinite density, temperature, and infinite space-time curvature.[4]

The universe as it was(the singularity) expanded 13.7 billion years ago as the theory explains, there is nothing in
The Big Bang model which suggests that the singularity just popped into existence (although

it's possible for things measured at the sub-atomic level to come into existence according to
Quantum Mechanics, this is not what The Big Bang model suggests)



Conclusion regarding premise 2:



The only thing backing this claim up is The Big Bang Theory, however the theory never suggests
that the singularity began to exist, only that the unviverse as we know it had a beginning and it
originated from the singularity.

Rebutting Premise 3 (applies to both the classical, and reformulated arguments)


Since neither Premise 1 or 2 are logically sound, then there is no reason to assume that this
premise holds any weight. It is a baseless assertion.


Rebutting Premise 4 (classical argument)


This premise commits the common logical fallacy called God of the Gaps [5], and therefore can be
discredited.

(Basically the God of the Gaps argument is "I can't understand this so God did it.")


Rebutting premise 4 (reformulated argument)

Claiming that the cause must be personal because he chose to create the universe is yet, another
baseless assertion and completely irational. The premise assumes the cause must be a being with
consciousnes.

Lets assume (for the sake of argument) that the only logical conclusion is that the universe had a
cause. This still wouldn't be a solid argument in favor of an intelligent creator, there are theories
which invoke causes of the universe that are not involving conscious beings.


M-Theory



"M-Theory
also provided another crucial aspect of the puzzle in that it explained how the Big Bang

might have occurred, with two membranes colliding. The energy produced from such a collision is
mathematical consistent with what we know from existing science." [6]

There are also other theories which invoke causes of the universe as well (none of which have
solid evidence to support them, but still more evidence than God explanations).


Master re-cap:



1) Premise 1 (of either version of the Kalam Cosmological Argument) is not logically sound because
we have no examples of things being added to reality or "begnning to exist" which have causes. The only
observation we have of causes, involve pre-existing things changing form or being rearranged.

Premise 1 is also most likely false, because we can indirectly observe the effects of virtual particle fluctuations

(particle and anti-particle pairs seeming to begin to exist). Evidence points to these fluctuations being uncaused.

2) Premise 2 may be true, but it may not be. Either way, the only thing backing up this premise is The Big Bang.
Since The Big Bang model never suggested that the singularity didn't come from a pre-existing state. It's not logical

to use The Big Bang as evidence of the universe beginning to exist ex nihilo.

3) If 1 of the 2 previous premises is not sound, then the third cannot be.


4) Premise 4 of the classical argument commits the logical fallacy known as God of the Gaps,
Premise 4 of the reformulated argument creates the fallacy of assuming that if a cause of the
universe is fact, then it is a conscious being


Conclusion:


Only one premise needs to be invlaid for me to meet my burden, however all of the premises of the Kalam
Cosmological Argument are baseless, and not logically sound..

Sources:

[1] http://biology.about.com......
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org......
[3] http://plato.stanford.edu......
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org......
[5] http://pseudoastro.wordpress.com......
[6] http://www.wisegeek.com......



KeytarHero

Con

Thank you, again, to Pro for starting this debate.

An argument can be two things: valid and/or sound. In order for an argument (e.g. the Kalam Cosmological Argument) to be valid, its conclusion must follow logically from its premises. It does, therefore the Kalam Cosmological Argument is valid. In order for it to be sound, not only must it be valid (which it is) but its premises must also be true. In order for the resolution to be confirmed, Pro must show why at least one of its premises are untrue. [1]

Also, I did not watch the video as 1, Pro didn't reference it in his argument and two, my debate is with Pro, not with a guy on YouTube.

Premise 1

Pro claims that this is a baseless assertion, but it is not. Even if his argument held water, we would still have an example of something that came into existence that has a cause: the universe. Arguments such as the Kalam Cosmological Argument are postulated to logically argue that the cause of the universe was, in fact, an Intelligent Creator. So stating that Premise 1 is untrue simply because we don't observe anything being created from nothing in nature is misguided. We have reason to suppose something could create the universe from nothing, and logical arguments such as the one we're debating are used to show why belief in an Intelligent Creator is reasonable.

Now, we actually did begin to exist. There is a principle of causality in science that every effect has a cause. Pro and I were once not a sperm and an egg, but we were once a zygote. We began to exist as new, unique, living humans once the cause of the sperm and egg joining happened, the effect being a new human entity. It is also not correct to look at a hunk of metal and call it a car. It could be made into something else. It's not until a car is actually constructed that it may correctly be called a car. Pro and I began to exist; the effect of our existence was contingent upon the cause, our parents procreating and our father's sperm merging with our mother's egg. We began to exist, and we have a cause of our existence.

Regarding his argument for the falseness of Premise 1, his argument is fundamentally flawed. Pro seems to think that scientists love being in the dark about why things happen. It is the fundamental function of science to find answers to questions, to find why things happen. Pro even admits that these "virtual particle fluctuations" may not even be uncaused, so it seems that he has refuted his own argument. He is arguing from ignorance, that they seem to be uncaused so they are because we have no other explanation. Scientists would not rest at these particles seeming to be uncaused, they would find a cause for these things to happen.

Additionally, even if you believed these particles pop in and out of existence from nothing, then one, that is only true if you accept the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, which is only one of many and two, even if you accept Copenhagen, you still have to acknowledge that these 'uncaused' quantum fluctuations require a wavefunction to describe the state of the system prior to measurement.

The problem with quantum mechanics is that it equivocates when it describes nothing. [2] The "nothing" of quantum mechanics is a "sea of transient particles." This is avoiding the question by trying to claim that "nothing" is not actually "nothing."

The reality is you cannot dismiss the Kalam Cosmological Argument with quantum mechanics. Consider this:

1. It is claimed that the universe 'came into being' as the result of a quantum fluctuation
2. Quantum fluctuations necessitate a wavefunction. Without a wavefunction, there are no quantum fluctuations
3. A wavefunction is a description of Something, not Nothing. Nothing cannot be described; otherwise, it would not be Nothing
4. Therefore, if you assert 1, the question merely becomes: what caused the 'Something' which was described by the wavefunction of the universe at its absolute beginning?

So as we see, Pro equivocates by appealing to quantum mechanics to show that something can come from nothing, which contradicts the scientific principle of causality, that every effect has a cause.

Premise 2

It is not logical to suppose that a singularity existed before the universe that caused the big bang without an Intelligent Cause. If a singularity existed eternally it would need a catalyst to build up energy and expand into our universe.

Also, no know natural laws could account for this violent eruption out of eternal quietude. An eternally quiet universe is physically impossible, since it would have to exist at absolute zero, which is impossible. Matter at the beginning was anything but cold, being collapsed into a fireball with temperatures in excess of billions of degrees Kelvin. In a lump of matter frozen to absolute zero, no first even could occur. Finally, positing eternal primordial stuff does nothing to account for the incredible order that follows the moment of the big bang. Only an intelligent Creator can account for this. [3]

Premise 3
Pro keeps saying that the premises are "unsound" but a premise cannot be valid or invalid, sound or unsound. A premise can only be true or false. The truth or falsity of the premises shows whether the argument as a whole is valid and/or sound. Pro has given no reason to reject the first two premises and as such, this premise stands.

Premise 4

Now, as you will note from my first round, there is no fourth premise. Only two premises and a conclusion. Here Pro is actually attacking a strawman of the Kalam Cosmological Argument. The Kalam Cosmological Argument postulates that universe had a cause, it doesn't necessarily prove that this cause is an Intelligent Creator (that's why to be most effective, it must be combined with another argument such as the Teleological Argument or the Moral Argument to prove the First Cause was an Intelligent Creator).

In my opening argument I showed what the Kalam Cosmological Argument is. This argument came from Islamic philosophers and it's possible they originally used something similar to the fourth premise, but the fourth premise is not necessary or even actually implied. Pro has not argued against the Kalam Cosmological Argument I laid out in the first round, which is the argument that is the basic element of the Kalam Cosmological Argument. Pro was not specific on the form of the Kalam Cosmological Argument has claimed was unsound so I was forced to explain what the Kalam Cosmological Argument is. He has not shown how it is unsound. The argument shows that since the universe had a beginning (which Pro has not disproven), and everything that has a beginning has a cause, the universe had a cause.

Conclusion

Pro has not shown that any of the premises are untrue and as such, the soundness of the Kalam Cosmological Argument has been upheld.

[1] http://www.preservearticles.com...;
[2] http://www.samharris.org...;
[3] Geisler, Norman L., The Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics, Baker Books, pp. 399-400
Debate Round No. 2
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

"An argument can be two things: valid and/or sound. In order for an argument (e.g. the Kalam Cosmological Argument) to be valid, its conclusion must follow logically from its premises. It does, therefore the Kalam Cosmological Argument is valid."

In no way does "God is the cause of the universe" follow from the premise "the universe had a cause". That would be like saying "This person was murdered, therefore, Frank Mcgee was the murderer".

This is clearly a non-sequitor


Clearing up the confusion regarding my burden:



"In order for it to be sound, not only must it be valid (which it is) but its premises must also be true."

Perhaps.

However one of the premises could be true by chance even though it is not logically sound, all I have to do is show that a premise is not logically sound in the debate context.

The KCA involves what scientists call "unfalsifiable claims". One example would be if I said "there is an invisible friend beside me and nothing physical effects him and he can effect nothing physical", now there is no way you could show that the premise is false, however you can show it is not logically sound.

I hope this clears up the confusion.


Regarding Premise 1:

"Pro claims that this is a baseless assertion, but it is not. Even if his argument held water, we would still have an example of something that came into existence that has a cause: the universe."

Bare assertion fallacy.

The Big Bang states that the universe as we know it expanded from the singularity, it does not state that the singularity began to exist out of absolute nothingness, it also does not say that if the singularity began to exist, it had a cause.

"We have reason to suppose something could create the universe from nothing, and logical arguments such as the one we're debating are used to show why belief in an Intelligent Creator is reasonable."

Bare assertion fallacy.

What reasons are there? Also I am aware the Kalam Cosmological Argument is what we are debating about, this doesn't mean you have demonstrated any flaws in my reasoning.

"There is a principle of causality in science that every effect has a cause."

This does not seem to apply at the sub-atomic level.

"It is also not correct to look at a hunk of metal and call it a car"

A "car" is what we called a certain rearrangement of things, so you are correct, if the pre-existing things aren't in the peticular arrangment, then you wouldn't call it "car". This doesn't mean anything came into existence when the car was made.

"It could be made into something else. It's not until a car is actually constructed that it may correctly be called a car."

Agreed, however you aren't calling a brand new existing thing a "car", you are calling a certain specific arrangment of pre-existing things a "car". So yes, if the metal was rearranged in a different way that didn't correspond to what you labeled a "car", it wouldn't be a "car".

I'm still confused as to how you believe your statements are in any way providing a reason to believe that something new was added to existence that the universe didn't contain (began to exist), when a car is made.

"Pro and I began to exist; the effect of our existence was contingent upon the cause, our parents procreating and our father's sperm merging with our mother's egg. We began to exist, and we have a cause of our existence."

In reality all material you are made of pre-existed before your conception. If my opponent wants to argue that we "began" to exist, he must first describe scientifically what was added to physical reality that wasn't there prior.

"Pro seems to think that scientists love being in the dark about why things happen"

Straw man fallacy, I never implied the above.

"Scientists would not rest at these particles seeming to be uncaused, they would find a cause for these things to happen."

My opponent doesn't understand the difference between macro-level events, and sub-atomic level events. If he did, he would not be saying such outrages things.

"So as we see, Pro equivocates by appealing to quantum mechanics to show that something can come from nothing, which contradicts the scientific principle of causality, that every effect has a cause."

Yes things seem to require causes at the macro-level, not the sub-atomic level.

Re-Cap:

My opponent's refutations were basically a fallacious plate of spaghetti, so it's hard to address each noodle.

Problems with my opponent's objections to my refutations regarding Premise 1:

1) He assumes I have to show unfalsifiable claims are false, instead of simply showing why the claim is baseless and not logically sound.

2) He doesn't understand the difference between macro-level events, and sub-atomic level events and therefore thinks it's logical to claim that whatever occurs at the macro-level (causes) must occur at the sub-atomic level. Physicists dont agree with Con's position.

3) He assumes that putting a label on a certain rearrangement of pre-existing things, is somehow a new thing beginning to exist. If I put 1,2,3,4,5,6, and 7 together, a new number wasn't created just because you can label those sequences of numbers "Gorg". "Gorg" didn't begin to exist, all you did was put a label on a specific rearrangement of numbers.


Regarding Premise 2:

"It is not logical to suppose that a singularity existed before the universe that caused the big bang without an Intelligent Cause."

Bare asserion fallacy.

There are many hypotheses which deals with a cause of the universe that do not involve intelligence (M-theory).

"No know natural laws could account for this violent eruption out of eternal quietude"

God of the Gaps fallacy.

Just because you don't know how natural existence can account for something, doesn't mean it can't. Even if you are right that no natural laws could account for this "violent erruption", that still doesn't mean God did it.

"Finally, positing eternal primordial stuff does nothing to account for the incredible order that follows the moment of the big bang. Only an intelligent Creator can account for this."

Another God of the Gaps fallacy. Just because you don't how how the singularity can evolve into something with order, doesn't mean God did it.

Re-Cap:

1) My opponent never refuted the fact that The Big Bang model never indicates an origin of the singularity (The Big Bang = The universe we know it expanded from the singularity). Therefore, there is nothing backing up the premise "The universe began to exist", and it is baseless, and therefore not logically sound.

2) My opponent commits bare asserion fallacies left right and center, and seems to just assert the fact that the cause of the universe (if there even is one) must be intelligent without any in depth reasoning or anything to back up the claims.

Regarding Premise 3:

"A premise can only be true or false"

Yes, however if one of the premises could be proven to be true at this point, there would be no people like me. If they could be proven false at this point, there would be no people like you. One can only make logical cases at this point, my opponent is dealing with absolutes when that is not the context of the debate.

"Pro has given no reason to reject the first two premises and as such, this premise stands."

Actually I gave very good reasons, since all of your objections are fallacies/ incorrect, then the refutations still stand

Regarding Premise 4:

"Now, as you will note from my first round, there is no fourth premise."

Your first round had no sources, and is incorrect.

If we were discussing the "Cosmological Argument" strictly then you may be right, however we are discussing the "Kalam Cosmological Argument" which includes more than 3 premises claiming "God" exists.

http://plato.stanford.edu...

http://www.philosophyofreligion.info...

Conclusion:

Con's objections to my refutations were either fallacies, or simply incorrect. Since my refutations did not go logically refuted, then they stand.

The Kalam Cosmological Argument is not logically sound.
KeytarHero

Con

The Kalam Cosmological Argument is valid. The universe has a cause follows from the premises everything that has a beginning has a cause, and the universe had a beginning, therefore the universe has a cause. If Pro wanted to argue a different version of the Kalam Cosmological Argument, he should have posted which version he was arguing against during the first round. I am not William Lane Craig, and I don't use his version. If he had posted one of the versions he's been arguing against I likely would not have taken this debate. (By the way, for the source this version of the KCM is used in the Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics, composed by Norman Geisler). It's obvious Pro can't argue against the version I supplied so he's using another version which he sees as easier to argue againt. So he's created a Strawman argument. Since he did not supply a version of the KCM he wanted to use, I was forced to give the one that I (and other Chrisitan apologists) use. Don't let him get away with this.

There's no "perhaps" about this. Pro may not understand the difference between a valid and sound argument. His resolution is "The Kalam Cosmological Argument is not logically sound." In order for the argument to be sound, it must be valid (i.e. the conclusion must follow logically from the premises, which it does), and those premises must be true. If he cannot demonstrate any of the premises as false, then his resolution fails because the argument is sound.

Premise 1

Pro has, for the most part, side-stepped my arguments by trying to claim fallacies where there are none and completely ignoring some of my arguments. I'll try again.

When I said the universe is something that came into existence that has a cause, it is not a bare assertion fallacy (Pro thinks so because he argues from his biases). Arguments like the Kalam Cosmological Argument and the Teleological argument attempt to show how a belief in God is likely and not a "bare assertion."

I could also point out his appeal to the "singularity" that was there before the Big Bang is also a bare assertion fallacy.

I never said the singularity came out of nothing, just that if there was a singularity that existed befor ethe Big Bang, it would have had no reason to build up energy and explode to create our universe without an outside force acting upon it, which could have also been God.

Pro makes the assertion that at the sub-atomic level effects do not need a cause but he has not shown why this is possible. This is a case of special pleading. I would ask Pro to prove that events at the sub-atomic level do not need a cause.

A car comes into existence once the parts are assembled into a car. A hunk of metal cannot be driven like a car. It's not until the metal and other parts are assembled that it can actually act like a car.

Pro even admits that the metal must be arranged a certain way in order to be a car. A car comes into existence once its parts are assembled.

It may have been made with preexisting elements, but the essence of what it is has come into existence. Just like with a human once the sperm and ovum merge a brand new human has come into existence, with the inherent capacity to develop all the traits that humans have. I did not exist before the sperm and egg merged to create me.

I was not making a strawman fallacy regarding Pro, just showing that his statement was ridiculous, that effects don't need a cause. While something may appear to be uncaused now (such as things at the sub-atomic level), that doesn't mean that they don't have a cause. And scientists will eventually find out why these things happen. Pro even admitted that his arguments don't mean there isn't a cause, which would indicate that he may be wrong and the KCM correct that everything that has a beginning has a cause.

Pro has given no evidence why anything at the sub-atomic level would not need a cause, when things at the macro level would.

In fact, he completely ignored my argument against his implications in my last argument, so I'll try this again.

Let's grant, for the sake of argument, that subatomic particles can pop into existence uncaused despite the fact that this is only one highly debated interpretation of quantum mechanics. Even granting this highly contested idea, it does nothing to solve the pertinent problem: can anything pop out of existence uncaused out of nothing. Any physicist will tell you that particles pop into existence because the wavefunction of the system you're studying is in a superposition of multiple states, some containing particles and some not containing particles. The question for you then, is: what caused this wavefunction? You cannot appeal to particles popping into existence without appealing to a quantum wavefunction. Quantum wavefunctions always describe Something. It is philosophically impossible that they describe Nothing because Nothing cannot be described; if it could, it would not be Nothing. So the argument is:

1. Even if we grant that particles pop into existence uncaused through a quantum fluctuation, this would require the existence of a quantum wavefunction. Without a wavefunction, you have no quantum fluctuations
2. Wavefunctions describe Something
3. Nothing, by defnition, cannot be described
4. So what caused this quantum wavefunction?

If Pro again refuses to answer this, readers, then I think it's clear who has the stronger arguments.

Premise 2

Pro has created his own bare assertion fallacy by appealing to a singularity before the creation of the Big Bang. I'm sure there are many hypotheses about the creation of the universe which do not involve intelligence, but there are also many that do. Your singularity is no more believable than an Intelligent Creator, and you are making an argument from intelligence to claim that there's "no proof for God so God must not exist." That's two fallacies in one.

Additionally, God of the gaps is not a logical fallacy. [1] It was a term coined by a Theologian to not just insert "God did it" willy-nilly into one's arguments. If there are no known natural laws that account for something, it's possible the only explanation is God, but it's also possible science will day have an answer to them. But as I've shown, the "singularity" before the universe actually contradicts natural law. It would have needed a catalyst to build up energy and expand into the universe. If it was eternally existing it would not have a catalyst unless acted upon by an outside force.

The premises can be shown as true. Everything that has a beginning has a cause, and the universe had a beginning. We know the universe is not eternal because it is expanding. So it had a beginning. We also know that everything that has a beginning has a cause because of the scientific principle of causality.

Premise 4

I have already shown why Pro is being disingenuous by arguing a different form of the KCM than I am. If Pro had a specific version in mind, he should have posted it from the get-go. So I was forced to use the version I and other theologians use, one that he apparently can't argue against so he is sticking to his guns to argue a version he sees as weaker. I am not William Lane Craig, and I don't use his version of the KCM.

Conclusion

My arguments were not fallacious (and even if they were, Pro has arguably made as many fallacies as I allegedly have). But the Kalam Cosmological Argument stands. It is valid, because its arguments follow logically from its premises, and it is sound because it is valid and the premises are all true. In fact, the premises are all in line with scientific principle. Pro is not only arguing against the Kalam Cosmological Argument but against scientific principle itself.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...;
Debate Round No. 3
Rational_Thinker9119

Pro

Closing Arguments

The Kalam Cosmological argument is not logically sound. The premise "whatever begins to exist, has a cause" is baseless, so Premise 1 fails. The only thing backing up Premise 2 is The Big Bang, but that only states that the universe as we know it came from the universe as we don't know it (The singularity). Since the universe in one form changing from another is not "beginning to exist" then Premise 2 fails to be logicaly sound. Since Premise 1 and 2 fail, then Premise 3 does not follow. Even if Premise 3 was sound (which is itsn't) you still canot logically jump from Premise 3 to "God must be the cause", therefore the Kalam Cosmological Argument is a non-sequitur.

The Kalam Cosmological Argument is completely baseless and not logically sound.


Also, my opponent has posted no source indicacting that the Kalam Cosmological Argument is only a 3 premise argument, he simply told us to search something (that's not posting a source).

Since I posted 3 sources indicating that the Kalam Cosmological Argument is more than just 3 premises (none of which indicated that it was strictly Dr. Craig's version mind you, so my opponent's claim in that regard is baseless), then in the context of this debate it is more than a 3 premise argument. I personally haven't found any sources claiming that it is just a 3 premise argument, and my opponent has posted no sources claiming this is the case so he is either mistaken or dishonest it seems.

Also, Con claiming that it's obvious that I couldn't refute the version he provided is baselss for two reasons.

1) I did refute his version, very easily

2) His version isn't the Kalam Cosmological Argument, it's the Cosmological Argument.

Basically my opponent's version is not backed up by any souces that he provided, so they do not apply. I urge the voters to take into account the blatent dishonesty/ ignorance involving my opponet and his version of the Kalam Cosmological Argument, because every version I researched had more than 3 premises.

As far as my burden goes, my opponent once more doesn't seem to understand the difference bettween something being logically sound and something being true.

Something can be true and not logically sound, something can also be false and logically sound. Therefore, basing something being logically sound strictly on whether it can be proven true or not makes absolutely no sense.

"If he cannot demonstrate any of the premises as false, then his resolution fails because the argument is sound"

The above is clearly has no foundation reflecting the basic understandings of logic.

You don't have to prove something is false to show that it is not logically sound. Something can be true by chance and still not be logically sound so I wish my opponent would get that one right.

Anyway, regardless of whether or not the viewers disagree with me or not on this peticular issue, my opponent's arguments are clearly either all fallacious or simply incorrect.

Regarding Premise 1

My opponent seems to be implying that I have no foundation for claiming his arguments are fallacious, however that is baseless because he has not demonstrated how his arguments are not fallacious. Now while he is right that that arguments like the Kalam Cosmological Argument and the Teleological argument attempt to show how a belief in God is likely and not a "bare assertion", this doesn't change the fact that it is (attempting and succeeding are two very different things).

Now Con seems to believe that it's logical that the expansion of the singularity had a cause, I agree. However since the expansion took place from within the singularity, then the cause was most likely internal and not external. An internal cause for something happening to some pre-existing state, in no way shape or form equates to an external cause for something beginning to exist. Therefore, Premise 2 fails to show that "the universe began to exist" if it is based on The Big Bang. If one premise is baseless, the the whole argument fails to be logically sound.


"A car comes into existence once the parts are assembled into a car."


False.

A "car" is a label applied to a specific arrangement pre-existing things, there is no substance or force being added to existence when the car was created.

According to my opponent, you can bring things into existence my rearranging things. This is of course absurd, so we can dismiss his statement above.

"Pro even admits that the metal must be arranged a certain way in order to be a car."

Straw man.

I admitted that the metal/ steel must be arranged in a certain way for it to be called a car. I never admitted that rearranging something = Bringing something new into existence (because it isn't, and my opponent is clearly being dishonest).

Unless my opponent can name what new thing like a molecule, atom, chemical, force, energy ect. that was brought into existence when the car was made, then it's clear he has no scientific bases for claiming that rearranging things is someone brining new things into existence. It's outrages.

"Pro has given no evidence why anything at the sub-atomic level would not need a cause, when things at the macro level would."

Relativity is a principle within the universe, it breaks down at the sub-atomic level. Since it's possible for principles applied to the macro-level to fall apart at the sub-atomic level, and cause/ effect is a principle of the macro-level, then there is no logical reason to claim everything must have a cause.

Regarding Premise 2


"I'm sure there are many hypotheses about the creation of the universe which do not involve intelligence, but there are also many that do."

Exactly, so to claim of the KCA that the cause must be personal is not logically sound. If it's possible for M-Theory to correct, then the must aspect goes right out the window.

Now my opponent is claiming that God of the Gaps is not a logical fallacy, which pretty much sums up how lost my opponent is in this debate. The god of the gaps was actually deemed a fallacy by Theists themselves a long time ago.

"Is a god of the gaps at the root of Intelligent Design (ID) and creation science? This informal logical fallacy occurs when a given mystery (or gap) that science has not solved is "explained" with reference to divine activity: God just made it work out, somehow, some theists might say." - http://www.icr.org...

I got the above quote from a Creationist Website. Every Sophisticated Theist knows God of the Gaps is a fallacy, to deny this shows my opponent's lack of understanding of logic.

Now lets be clear, The Big Bang states that the universe as we know it came from the singularity, it does not say that the singularity began to exist.

If Premise 2 is only backed up by The Big Bang, then premise 2 is baseless.

Any assertion which is baseless, is not logically sound.

Regarding Premise 3


Premise 1 and 2 are baseless, making Premise 3 baseless.


Premise 4


If Con wants to change the Kalam Cosmological Argument then he is being dishonest. My opponent just asserts that it is only a 3 premise argument without any sources, I have provided 3 sources showing that it is in fact at least a 4 premise argument.

Sources and honesty > No sources and dishonesty


Conclusion:

1) Substances in motion aren't new substances to popping into existence, so we have no direct observations of things scientifically beginnning to exist at the macro-level.

2) We have indirect observations of virtual particles popping in and out of existence at the sub-atomic level, and principles of the macro-level don't necessarlity apply to the sub-atomic level.

3) P1 of the KCA is baseless

4) P2 is based on The Big Bang, but The Big Bang doesn't support P2, so it is baseless.

5) All research of the KCA indicates it includes more than 3 premises, I prvovided 3 sources to back up my claim, con has provided 0.

6) "God must be the cause of the universe" does not follow from the first 3 premises, so it is a non-sequitur.

7) The Kalam Cosmological Argument is not logically sound



KeytarHero

Con

Closing Arguments

The Kalam Cosmological Argument is logically sound, as I have shown. It is both valid and its premises are true. I will not respond to Pro's first paragraph because he is simply rehashing old arguments and I wouldn't be adding anything new.

I did post a source for the version of the Kalam Cosmological Argument (which is different from the Cosmological Argument) that I, and other theologians like Norman Geisler, use. Unfortunately I didn't have the book in front of me and I didn't want to give any false information. However, I am almost positive Pro wouldn't have looked it up anyway, as is evidenced by the fact that he clearly doesn't know what makes an argument valid and/or sound, and I even provided a source for the clarification (which he obviously didn't read).

Additionally, Pro claimed, "none of which indicated that it was strictly Dr. Craig's version mind you, so my opponent's claim in that regard is baseless..." In round 2 he very specifically indicated one of the arguments was Dr. William Lane Craig's reformulated version and then proceeded to give arguments to "refute" one or both of them.

The fact of the matter is that he did not post which version he wanted to argue again, so I supplied the one I use. He did not refute it, he was trying to Strawman me by refuting a version of the KCA that I don't use.

Premise 1

I have not been dishonest, and it is Pro who shows his own ignorace of what the Cosmological Argument and Kalam Cosmological Argument teaches. The Cosmological Argument has gone through many facelifts since it was first postulated, and not everyone arguing for the existence of God uses the exact same argument.

Pro has consistently shown that his own arguments fall into the bare assertion category. If the singularity at the beginning was eternal, it would have no internal cause to expand and create the universe. It would need a catalyst. If it was static there would be no reason for it to react internally to create the universe.

By this point I'm wondering if Pro is even reading what he's writing. Let me explain. He quoted me as saying, "Pro even admits that the metal must be arranged a certain way in order to be a car." Then he says, "Straw man. I admitted that the metal/ steel must be arranged in a certain way for it to be called a car." There's no difference. The metal/steel is not a car before it is arranged that way. Adding in "to be called" changes nothing. It can only be called a car because it is a car. The metal/steel is not a car until it is formed into a car. A car does not exist until it is created.

Pro has consistently side-stepped my arguments. For two rounds now I asked him to back up his baseless assertions by asking about what caused the quantum wavefunctions. Two rounds now he has completely ignored this. Don't let him get away it, dear readers. Premise one stands.

Premise 2

Pro continues to Strawman me by arguing a form of the KCA I am not using. Again, readers, he did not supply which version he wanted to use, so I was forced to supply it. The KCA is not meant to prove there is a Creator, it is meant to show that the universe needs a cause. Combined with other arguments, like the Teleological Argument and the Moral Argument, does it show that the cause is God. Pro was being disingenuous by not being upfront about the argument at the beginning. Now, some have adapted the argument to try and show the existence of God from just the Cosmological Argument, like Dr. Craig, but I am not Dr. Craig and Pro did not show which version he wanted to argue. If he had, I may not have even taken take debate.

All right, I do concede the point that God of the gaps is a logical fallacy. But I ask you, after reading the arguments, who is the more lost in this debate? Pro has not even responded to a good number of my arguments, completely ignoring them. He doesn't even understand the difference between a valid argument and a sound argument. In fact, he hasn't read my sources and he consistently contradicts himself even in this same debate. I ask you, again, who has the least understanding of logic?

Premise 3

Pro has not shown that the first two premises are baseless, so again premise 3 stands.

Premise 4

I am not changing the KCA, I am arguing from the roots of it. Dr. William Lane Craig has changed the KCA (Pro even admitted it was a reformulated argument). Pro is not debating the KCA I was forced to give because of his own disingenuity.

Conclusion

The KCA I was arguing from is as follows:

1. Everything that begins has a cause.
2. The universe had a beginning.
3. Therefore, the universe had a cause.

Pro did not supply which version of the KCA he wanted to argue against, so I was forced to give it. Pro didn't like my version so for the entire debate, he decided to Strawman me by arguing against a version of the KCA I wasn't using. I think it's quite clear that the KCA is a sound argument. It is valid (its conclusion logically follows from its premises) and its premises are true. The KCA is meant to show that the universe had a cause, which opens the door to other arguments like the Teleological Argument to show that the cause of the universe was an Intelligent Creator.

Thank you again for reading.
Debate Round No. 4
74 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
Rational, how about you just send me a debate challenge rather then debate in the comments? This is all rather useless.
Posted by unitedandy 4 years ago
unitedandy
The video in the debate is pretty terrible. It doesn't even represent Kalam faithfully, and the "Who created God?" refutation is hopeless.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 4 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
Creatio ex nihilo: The belief God created everything out of nothing, and that nothing pre-existed before God.

Creatio ex Materia: The belief God created out of pre-existing materials, that existed before God.

The theist can't squirm there way out of the equivocation fallacy by claiming that God created ex materia because that begs the question, "where did the materials come from?".

The theist has to admit they believe God created ex nihilo.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 4 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
*then there is no reasoning which can lead one to believe that a cause can be applied to creation ex nihilo.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 4 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
"Rational, you're confusing something coming into existence ex nihilo with being the same thing as something coming into existence ex materia. You seem to think that becomes something didn't come into existence ex nihilo that it automatically did not come into existence ex materia. This commits the fallacy of composition."

The fallacy of composition is when you believe that because something is true for the parts of something, that it must be true for the whole. You believe that because causes are required within the universe for the parts, that they must be applied to the universe as a whole. The Kalam Cosmological Arument is actually committing the fallacy of composition.

Also how can creation ex materia somehow be evidence of creation ex nihilo? To use the word "cause" to describe both is committing the equivocation fallacy.

There is no evidence that:

1) Creation ex nihilo is possible

2) If creation ex nihilo is possible, then it requires a cause.

Since all examples of causes involve pre-existing things and not things beginning to begin out of magic, then there is no reasoning which can lead one to believe that a cause applied to creation ex nihilo.
Posted by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
*because not BECOME. Holy crap. I need sleep.
Posted by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
*because not because. Lol
Posted by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
Rational, you're confusing something coming into existence ex nihilo with being the same thing as something coming into existence ex materia. You seem to think that becomes something didn't come into existence ex nihilo that it automatically did not come into existence ex materia. This commits the fallacy of composition.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 4 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
A "car" is a label given to a specific assembly of pre-existing things, it's not a label given to something that magically appeared out of thin air.

The KCA is trying to claim that God willed something into existence, not that he rearranged pre-existing things.
Posted by Rational_Thinker9119 4 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
"I showed you that new things come into existence, even though the individual parts have been rearranged."

No you didn't, you can't cause things to come into existence you can only rearrange pre-existing things.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by TheBrorator 4 years ago
TheBrorator
Rational_Thinker9119KeytarHeroTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Because the round was acceptance and Con decided to start his case with an outline of what the KCA is, conduct to Pro. Ultimately, I didn't know much about the KCA until now, so I was forming my opinion during the debate, and at the end, agreed with Pro, so convincing arguments to him. Didn't really look for spelling or grammar. And sources also to Pro for outlining them quite well. Also, I found the video source a refresher that this is the internet, and text sources are not the only source
Vote Placed by SuburbiaSurvivor 4 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
Rational_Thinker9119KeytarHeroTied
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Total points awarded:24 
Reasons for voting decision: I give conduct and arguments to Con because Con outlined the KCA in Round 1. Pro never outlined it in round 1 so Con was allowed to outline it in Round 1. Pro needed to have outlined the specific version of the KCA he was refuting in Round 1 so Con could accept. However, Pro had sources for his version. As far as arguments, Con refuted all of Pro's objections. No contest. The debate was about whether the KCA is logically sound, and Pro showed that it is. It may be false, but it is sound.
Vote Placed by Mimshot 4 years ago
Mimshot
Rational_Thinker9119KeytarHeroTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Excellent job all around. Con never really refuted Pro's points 1 and 2 from the first round except with bare assertions, so pro edges out the argument points.
Vote Placed by HeartOfGod 4 years ago
HeartOfGod
Rational_Thinker9119KeytarHeroTied
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Total points awarded:61 
Reasons for voting decision: The kalam cosmological argument is completely logically sound for reasons not mentioned in this debate. Any who, as far as this debate goes con was not correct about the kalam cosmological argument only involving a cause conclusion, and gave no sources that stated otherwise. Pro showed clear fallacies in cons arguments regarding the first 2 premises and took this debate quite easily. The kca IS logically sound though, too bad it wasn't a different debate.