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Aquinas' first way

zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
themohawkninja
Posts: 816
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12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.
"Morals are simply a limit to man's potential."~Myself

Political correctness is like saying you can't have a steak, because a baby can't eat one ~Unknown
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 7:15:54 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM, themohawkninja wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.

Great point.
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 7:22:49 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM, themohawkninja wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.

It should be noted that "moved" isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day.

Perhaps the big bang wasn't preceded by a temporal mover, but that's not what the argument seems to argue.

From my understanding of the argument...

Stuff we see has actual qualities, as well as potential qualities. When something potential is elevated to actual, then it must be actualized by something else, since a potential by itself is just a potential. A potential by itself can't do anything precisely because it isn't actually existing. So to say that a potential could actualize itself seem absurd.

Or so the argument seems to me to go...
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 7:25:24 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Also it might be worthy to note that the whole act/potency distinction was in response to Parmenides...
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 7:28:07 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Also, Aquinas put forward his controversial opinion that it's logically impossible to prove a finite past here: http://www.newadvent.org... as well as in De Aeternitate Mundi.

"By faith alone do we hold, and by no demonstration can it be proved, that the world did not always exist,"

Reading the argument in this context seems somewhat perplexing, and makes the argument alot more complicated than it seemed at first glance.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 7:45:09 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 7:22:49 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM, themohawkninja wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.

It should be noted that "moved" isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day.

Change requires time. So, that makes no sense....


Perhaps the big bang wasn't preceded by a temporal mover, but that's not what the argument seems to argue.

All movement is temporal necessarily. If something moves, that presupposes duration.


From my understanding of the argument...

Stuff we see has actual qualities, as well as potential qualities. When something potential is elevated to actual, then it must be actualized by something else, since a potential by itself is just a potential. A potential by itself can't do anything precisely because it isn't actually existing. So to say that a potential could actualize itself seem absurd.

This assumes there was a state of affairs at which the universe didn't exist actually, but only potentially. Why believe that?


Or so the argument seems to me to go...

"It should be noted that 'moved' isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day."
Rational_Thinker9119
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12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 10:49:18 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 7:45:09 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:22:49 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM, themohawkninja wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.

It should be noted that "moved" isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day.

Change requires time. So, that makes no sense....


I meant that the mover doesn't precede it in a temporal sense. Sure they both may exist throughout time together if they both change, but Aquinas clearly doesn't mean that one thing is "before" the other one.

Also, think of a foot in the sand. The foot causes the change in the sand particles. Obviously the two can exist or change in a duration, but the cause (the foot) doesn't precede the effect temporally. Compare this to say if I were to take a bowling ball and roll it into another bowling ball, which rolled into another bowling ball, etc. etc.

Accidental series can be thought of as going horizontal, while essential series can be thought of going vertical.


Perhaps the big bang wasn't preceded by a temporal mover, but that's not what the argument seems to argue.

All movement is temporal necessarily. If something moves, that presupposes duration.


I agree, but this doesn't affect the argument. What Aquinas clearly is arguing is that the mover and things moved may very well both exist or change through a duration, but that one doesn't precede the other in a temporal sense. Rather, one precedes another in a hierarchical sense.

The keys are pressed because my fingers are pressing them, which is due to the muscles in my fingers, which is due to the muscles in my arms, which in turn is due to the firing of certain neuron patterns, etc. etc. And supposedly this must terminate in something which is purely actual without any admixtures of potency.

Note that if any one of the things in this example didn't exist, or didn't change, the following one wouldn't change. Now contrast this to the earlier example of rolling bowling balls.

For Aquinas, an accidentally ordered series (bowling balls) could regress infinitely, but not an essentially ordered series.

I suppose it's like this: Say you're flying a plane in the sky, and you see a building. One floor is supported by the one under it, which is supported by the one under it, etc. etc. But there must be a ground, according to Aquinas, since each of the floors is instrumental in causation, and has no power to cause on its own.


From my understanding of the argument...

Stuff we see has actual qualities, as well as potential qualities. When something potential is elevated to actual, then it must be actualized by something else, since a potential by itself is just a potential. A potential by itself can't do anything precisely because it isn't actually existing. So to say that a potential could actualize itself seem absurd.

This assumes there was a state of affairs at which the universe didn't exist actually, but only potentially. Why believe that?


Not really. Potential only exists as it pertains to actuality, or something actual. Pure potency is ridiculous. There's nothing actually existing. The medeivals stressed this alot. Pure act on the other hand, is possible, and as Aquinas and Aristotle argue, is none other than God.

Just the fact that someone brought up the big bang goes to show how unknown this argument is. Most people assume "motion" means something like "began to exist" so the first way is Aquinas' version of the Kalam argument. But this is clearly not so. Aquinas and Bonaventure had extremely heated debates about this, and Aquinas was decisively anti-Kalam.


Or so the argument seems to me to go...

"It should be noted that 'moved' isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day."

The other common objection to this argument is Newton's first way of inertia undermines this. But I don't think this objection succeeds either. The two objections I raised are, I think, the ones which undermine the argument best.

If the unmoved mover isn't purely actual, or unmovable, then all of Aquinas' arguments which are based upon this are wrong.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.

This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 11:00:15 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 7:51:12 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
So, even if one agrees with this argument; it says nothing about God. The Big Bang could be the unmoved mover.

If the argument succeeds in establishing an unmoved mover, which is purely actual and needed at all times for any sort of change, then something like God does follow.

If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it raises all potencies to act. So it's omnipotent.

If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it is immaterial, since all physical things have some degree of potency.

If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it cannot change in any way at all, and exists outside of time.

If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it is perfect and lacks nothing. Because whatever lacks something must have the potential to have that which is lacks. But the unmoved mover is purely actual, so it doesn't lack anything.

And I forget generally how Aquinas argues for the omniscience of the unmoved mover, but it has alot to do with his general philosophy of mind...

I still think the best argument is to attack whether or not the unmoved mover is purely actual... But from what I've read, Thomists don't seem to see this as a problem at all, so I might be missing something.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:02:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 10:49:18 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:45:09 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:22:49 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:46:48 PM, themohawkninja wrote:
At 12/14/2013 6:31:23 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
What's the weakest part of Aquinas' first way?

I suppose the argument could be formulated very hastily and non-formally...

"A. Some things are moved.
B. Every thing moved is moved by another.
C. Either there is a first mover or nothing is moved by another.
D. There is a first mover." [1]

And motion is the elevation of potency to act, by something else in act, and if there's a first unmoved mover, then this unmoved mover is purely actual without any admixture of potency, and unmovable...

Does anybody have a good way to put this argument in a formal syllogism?

I think my biggest beef is against whether or not per se series really exist in reality, or if they're not all just accidentally ordered series.

And also whether or not the unmoved mover would be absolutely unmovable, or pure actuality. Why couldn't the unmoved mover have potencies which are just never actualized?

The general causal series it seems to present or argue for is...

Act----->Potency/Act-------> Potency/act---------> Potency/act

[1] http://branemrys.blogspot.com...

Not everything is moved by something else. The big bang moved things, but as far as we know, it wasn't moved.

It should be noted that "moved" isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day.

Change requires time. So, that makes no sense....


I meant that the mover doesn't precede it in a temporal sense.

As I said, all movement presupposes time.

Sure they both may exist throughout time together if they both change, but Aquinas clearly doesn't mean that one thing is "before" the other one.

It doesn't matter what he meant. If I argue for a perfectly spherical cube, it doesn't matter that I didn't mean it to be contradictory; it still is.


Also, think of a foot in the sand. The foot causes the change in the sand particles. Obviously the two can exist or change in a duration, but the cause (the foot) doesn't precede the effect temporally.

Umm yes is does. The foot (the cause) had to come about in the womb of a mother temporally prior to the change in the sand. All causes we are aware of, temporally precede their effect in time.

Compare this to say if I were to take a bowling ball and roll it into another bowling ball, which rolled into another bowling ball, etc. etc.

Accidental series can be thought of as going horizontal, while essential series can be thought of going vertical.


Perhaps the big bang wasn't preceded by a temporal mover, but that's not what the argument seems to argue.

All movement is temporal necessarily. If something moves, that presupposes duration.


I agree, but this doesn't affect the argument. What Aquinas clearly is arguing is that the mover and things moved may very well both exist or change through a duration, but that one doesn't precede the other in a temporal sense. Rather, one precedes another in a hierarchical sense.

Perhaps, but there is no reason to posit anything else besides the first state of the universe as the unmoved mover. Positing God violate's Occam's Razor it seems.

The keys are pressed because my fingers are pressing them, which is due to the muscles in my fingers, which is due to the muscles in my arms, which in turn is due to the firing of certain neuron patterns, etc. etc. And supposedly this must terminate in something which is purely actual without any admixtures of potency.

Cool, we'll call that the first state of the universe. Everything leads back to The Big Bang. Why did Bob eat? He was hungry. Why was he hungry? Because evolution biologically drummed that into him so he would gain energy. Why is there evolution? Because that is what happens when you get self-replicating molecules. Why self-replicating molecules? Chemistry. Why chemistry? The Big Bang..... The story ends.


Note that if any one of the things in this example didn't exist, or didn't change, the following one wouldn't change. Now contrast this to the earlier example of rolling bowling balls.

For Aquinas, an accidentally ordered series (bowling balls) could regress infinitely, but not an essentially ordered series.

I suppose it's like this: Say you're flying a plane in the sky, and you see a building. One floor is supported by the one under it, which is supported by the one under it, etc. etc. But there must be a ground, according to Aquinas, since each of the floors is instrumental in causation, and has no power to cause on its own.

As I said, the first state of the universe carried all the potential for the universe you see to say. It expanded, and here you have it. You need nothing else.



From my understanding of the argument...

Stuff we see has actual qualities, as well as potential qualities. When something potential is elevated to actual, then it must be actualized by something else, since a potential by itself is just a potential. A potential by itself can't do anything precisely because it isn't actually existing. So to say that a potential could actualize itself seem absurd.

This assumes there was a state of affairs at which the universe didn't exist actually, but only potentially. Why believe that?


Not really. Potential only exists as it pertains to actuality, or something actual. Pure potency is ridiculous. There's nothing actually existing. The medeivals stressed this alot. Pure act on the other hand, is possible, and as Aquinas and Aristotle argue, is none other than God.

Ok, but that doesn't mean that The Big Bang could't be the unmoved mover.


Just the fact that someone brought up the big bang goes to show how unknown this argument is. Most people assume "motion" means something like "began to exist" so the first way is Aquinas' version of the Kalam argument. But this is clearly not so. Aquinas and Bonaventure had extremely heated debates about this, and Aquinas was decisively anti-Kalam.


Or so the argument seems to me to go...

"It should be noted that 'moved' isn't meant in a temporal sense. What Aquinas seems to have in mind is the change we see every day."

The other common objection to this argument is Newton's first way of inertia undermines this. But I don't think this objection succeeds either. The two objections I raised are, I think, the ones which undermine the argument best.

If the unmoved mover isn't purely actual, or unmovable, then all of Aquinas' arguments which are based upon this are wrong.
Rational_Thinker9119
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12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.
Rational_Thinker9119
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12/14/2013 11:07:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:00:15 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:51:12 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
So, even if one agrees with this argument; it says nothing about God. The Big Bang could be the unmoved mover.

If the argument succeeds in establishing an unmoved mover, which is purely actual and needed at all times for any sort of change, then something like God does follow.

Why is it needed at all times? That makes no sense. All you need is the first state with time in it, then the second state follows, then third ect.... You don't need the initial cause to still exist now.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it raises all potencies to act. So it's omnipotent.

Again this assumption is not needed. You only need something to exist at T=0, and the rest of the universe can follow without its existence.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it is immaterial, since all physical things have some degree of potency.

Again, there is no need for anything besides the universe that exists at all times.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it cannot change in any way at all, and exists outside of time.

Ok, then there is no need for a purely actual being.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it is perfect and lacks nothing.

So doesn't lack purely evil, and doesn't lack pure goodness. Thus, it is contradictory.

Because whatever lacks something must have the potential to have that which is lacks. But the unmoved mover is purely actual, so it doesn't lack anything.

And I forget generally how Aquinas argues for the omniscience of the unmoved mover, but it has alot to do with his general philosophy of mind...

I still think the best argument is to attack whether or not the unmoved mover is purely actual... But from what I've read, Thomists don't seem to see this as a problem at all, so I might be missing something.

Bingo! Why must it be purely actual? All you need is a something to exist at a point some time long ago to serve as a seed for everything else. That state, doesn't need to exist today.
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
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12/14/2013 11:11:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
In order to avoid a book-like response from you, let me sum up my point:

"1. I see no reason why the unmoved mover has to be purely actual, or existing at all times"

To explain the reality we live it, we only need assume that there existed something which there is no "prior" to, to serve as a seed for reality. This thing need not exist now. The first state of the universe existed and expanded; why do we need any more explanation?
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 11:13:29 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:07:41 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:00:15 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:51:12 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
So, even if one agrees with this argument; it says nothing about God. The Big Bang could be the unmoved mover.

If the argument succeeds in establishing an unmoved mover, which is purely actual and needed at all times for any sort of change, then something like God does follow.

Why is it needed at all times? That makes no sense. All you need is the first state with time in it, then the second state follows, then third ect.... You don't need the initial cause to still exist now.

Because that's what an essentially ordered series is. You're confusing an essentially ordered causal series with an accidentally ordered causal series.



If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it raises all potencies to act. So it's omnipotent.

Again this assumption is not needed. You only need something to exist at T=0, and the rest of the universe can follow without its existence.


Again, you misunderstand the distinction between accidental and essential causal series.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it is immaterial, since all physical things have some degree of potency.

Again, there is no need for anything besides the universe that exists at all times.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it cannot change in any way at all, and exists outside of time.

Ok, then there is no need for a purely actual being.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it is perfect and lacks nothing.

So doesn't lack purely evil, and doesn't lack pure goodness. Thus, it is contradictory.


Aquinas would view evil not as an existing thing, but rather a privation of goodness.

Because whatever lacks something must have the potential to have that which is lacks. But the unmoved mover is purely actual, so it doesn't lack anything.

And I forget generally how Aquinas argues for the omniscience of the unmoved mover, but it has alot to do with his general philosophy of mind...

I still think the best argument is to attack whether or not the unmoved mover is purely actual... But from what I've read, Thomists don't seem to see this as a problem at all, so I might be missing something.

Bingo! Why must it be purely actual? All you need is a something to exist at a point some time long ago to serve as a seed for everything else. That state, doesn't need to exist today.

No no no. *sigh* I'm really not trying to be offensive, but you don't get the argument at all, and it's embarrassing.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:16:35 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:13:29 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:07:41 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:00:15 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:51:12 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
So, even if one agrees with this argument; it says nothing about God. The Big Bang could be the unmoved mover.

If the argument succeeds in establishing an unmoved mover, which is purely actual and needed at all times for any sort of change, then something like God does follow.

Why is it needed at all times? That makes no sense. All you need is the first state with time in it, then the second state follows, then third ect.... You don't need the initial cause to still exist now.

Because that's what an essentially ordered series is. You're confusing an essentially ordered causal series with an accidentally ordered causal series.

You are assuming essential order is needed to explain reality.




If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it raises all potencies to act. So it's omnipotent.

Again this assumption is not needed. You only need something to exist at T=0, and the rest of the universe can follow without its existence.


Again, you misunderstand the distinction between accidental and essential causal series.

You don't need this essential order then. It's not required.



If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it is immaterial, since all physical things have some degree of potency.

Again, there is no need for anything besides the universe that exists at all times.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it cannot change in any way at all, and exists outside of time.

Ok, then there is no need for a purely actual being.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it is perfect and lacks nothing.

So doesn't lack purely evil, and doesn't lack pure goodness. Thus, it is contradictory.


Aquinas would view evil not as an existing thing, but rather a privation of goodness.

He's be wrong then.


Because whatever lacks something must have the potential to have that which is lacks. But the unmoved mover is purely actual, so it doesn't lack anything.

And I forget generally how Aquinas argues for the omniscience of the unmoved mover, but it has alot to do with his general philosophy of mind...

I still think the best argument is to attack whether or not the unmoved mover is purely actual... But from what I've read, Thomists don't seem to see this as a problem at all, so I might be missing something.

Bingo! Why must it be purely actual? All you need is a something to exist at a point some time long ago to serve as a seed for everything else. That state, doesn't need to exist today.

No no no. *sigh* I'm really not trying to be offensive, but you don't get the argument at all, and it's embarrassing.

Debate me on it.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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12/14/2013 11:17:51 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:16:35 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:29 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:07:41 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:00:15 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:51:12 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
So, even if one agrees with this argument; it says nothing about God. The Big Bang could be the unmoved mover.

If the argument succeeds in establishing an unmoved mover, which is purely actual and needed at all times for any sort of change, then something like God does follow.

Why is it needed at all times? That makes no sense. All you need is the first state with time in it, then the second state follows, then third ect.... You don't need the initial cause to still exist now.

Because that's what an essentially ordered series is. You're confusing an essentially ordered causal series with an accidentally ordered causal series.

You are assuming essential order is needed to explain reality.


Which is what the first premise tries to argue for.




If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it raises all potencies to act. So it's omnipotent.

Again this assumption is not needed. You only need something to exist at T=0, and the rest of the universe can follow without its existence.


Again, you misunderstand the distinction between accidental and essential causal series.

You don't need this essential order then. It's not required.



If the unmoved mover is purely actual, it is immaterial, since all physical things have some degree of potency.

Again, there is no need for anything besides the universe that exists at all times.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it cannot change in any way at all, and exists outside of time.

Ok, then there is no need for a purely actual being.


If the unmoved mover is purely actual, then it is perfect and lacks nothing.

So doesn't lack purely evil, and doesn't lack pure goodness. Thus, it is contradictory.


Aquinas would view evil not as an existing thing, but rather a privation of goodness.

He's be wrong then.


Because whatever lacks something must have the potential to have that which is lacks. But the unmoved mover is purely actual, so it doesn't lack anything.

And I forget generally how Aquinas argues for the omniscience of the unmoved mover, but it has alot to do with his general philosophy of mind...

I still think the best argument is to attack whether or not the unmoved mover is purely actual... But from what I've read, Thomists don't seem to see this as a problem at all, so I might be missing something.

Bingo! Why must it be purely actual? All you need is a something to exist at a point some time long ago to serve as a seed for everything else. That state, doesn't need to exist today.

No no no. *sigh* I'm really not trying to be offensive, but you don't get the argument at all, and it's embarrassing.

Debate me on it.

I'd probably lose. ;)
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:18:07 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.

To me it seems like it expects to much out of the explanation of reality. You only need a state at t=0. Nothing else is needed.

I would ask you, why is assuming just a state at t=0 insufficient to explain reality?
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:19:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Also, I don't find my lack of understanding of the argument embarrassing. What would be embarrassing is if I acted like I knew what I was talking about fully, while failing to understand. I admitted I didn't know the argument well. I think that is more something to look up than down to.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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12/14/2013 11:23:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:18:07 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.

To me it seems like it expects to much out of the explanation of reality. You only need a state at t=0. Nothing else is needed.

I would ask you, why is assuming just a state at t=0 insufficient to explain reality?

Well the first way isn't arguing about the existence of things, or coming into being, or any sort of efficient causation. That's Aquinas' second way, which is extremely similar to this. I'd like to stress that the first way and the Kalam cosmological argument are extremely different. One deals with the temporal generation of the universe (as you well know) while the other deals with every instant of change in existing things we see.

It's saying that among things which do exist any process of change is at every moment caused by another. It's essentially saying that if there isn't something causing the process of change at all times, then the process of change would not occur.

The potential is raised to actuality, only by something in actuality. The potential cannot raise itself to actuality, since it's not actual, but just a potential. Once the actuality stops raising the potential to actuality, it won't continue raising itself to actuality.

Which is why Newton's first law of inertia is a common objection, though I think it's misguided.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
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12/14/2013 11:25:00 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:19:48 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Also, I don't find my lack of understanding of the argument embarrassing. What would be embarrassing is if I acted like I knew what I was talking about fully, while failing to understand. I admitted I didn't know the argument well. I think that is more something to look up than down to.

Agreed. I'm just a bit tired and frustrated at the moment with some other people who've largely been resorting to personal insults. Yeah, we were arguing about homosexuality. People can't stand it when they know I'm gay but against homosexual actions... lol.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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12/14/2013 11:28:21 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
For anyone interested, this is a good (though long) explanation of Aquinas' first way. http://vimeo.com...

For some reason I've found this argument particularly difficult to put into any sort of syllogistic structure.
"Delete your fvcking sig" -1hard

"primal man had the habit, when he came into contact with fire, of satisfying the infantile desire connected with it, by putting it out with a stream of his urine... Putting out the fire by micturating was therefore a kind of sexual act with a male, an enjoyment of sexual potency in a homosexual competition."
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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12/14/2013 11:29:02 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:23:16 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:18:07 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.

To me it seems like it expects to much out of the explanation of reality. You only need a state at t=0. Nothing else is needed.

I would ask you, why is assuming just a state at t=0 insufficient to explain reality?

Well the first way isn't arguing about the existence of things, or coming into being, or any sort of efficient causation. That's Aquinas' second way, which is extremely similar to this. I'd like to stress that the first way and the Kalam cosmological argument are extremely different. One deals with the temporal generation of the universe (as you well know) while the other deals with every instant of change in existing things we see.

The two don't seem mutually exclusive.


It's saying that among things which do exist any process of change is at every moment caused by another. It's essentially saying that if there isn't something causing the process of change at all times, then the process of change would not occur.

This leads to an infinite regress though. Why can't things just, well, change? Why does every change need to be be caused by more change?


The potential is raised to actuality, only by something in actuality.

Lets say the potentially for everything else besides the first state of the universe at t=0, existed at the first state of the universe at t=0 (which was actual). Then as the universe expands, there is a second, third, forth state ect..

I'm still failing to see why anything else is needed but the first state of the universe to explain reality.

The potential cannot raise itself to actuality, since it's not actual, but just a potential. Once the actuality stops raising the potential to actuality, it won't continue raising itself to actuality.

Ok, I am saying, why can't we assume that the first state of the universe has logged within it, the potential for everything else that comes after it?


Which is why Newton's first law of inertia is a common objection, though I think it's misguided.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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12/14/2013 11:37:45 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:29:02 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:23:16 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:18:07 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.

To me it seems like it expects to much out of the explanation of reality. You only need a state at t=0. Nothing else is needed.

I would ask you, why is assuming just a state at t=0 insufficient to explain reality?

Well the first way isn't arguing about the existence of things, or coming into being, or any sort of efficient causation. That's Aquinas' second way, which is extremely similar to this. I'd like to stress that the first way and the Kalam cosmological argument are extremely different. One deals with the temporal generation of the universe (as you well know) while the other deals with every instant of change in existing things we see.

The two don't seem mutually exclusive.


It's saying that among things which do exist any process of change is at every moment caused by another. It's essentially saying that if there isn't something causing the process of change at all times, then the process of change would not occur.

This leads to an infinite regress though. Why can't things just, well, change? Why does every change need to be be caused by more change?


Well supposedly an infinite regress can't happen, so it terminates in an unchanged changer. Only changing things are changed by another. So there's nothing wrong about saying "unchanged changer."

I suppose this principle of causality is a sort of variation of "ex nihilo nihil fit." A potential isn't an actually existing thing. In other words, it's not real. Something which isn't real can't act upon itself to make itself real. So for change to occur, that is, for a potential to be raised to actual, something actual or real must do the changing.


The potential is raised to actuality, only by something in actuality.

Lets say the potentially for everything else besides the first state of the universe at t=0, existed at the first state of the universe at t=0 (which was actual). Then as the universe expands, there is a second, third, forth state ect..

I'm still failing to see why anything else is needed but the first state of the universe to explain reality.

The potential cannot raise itself to actuality, since it's not actual, but just a potential. Once the actuality stops raising the potential to actuality, it won't continue raising itself to actuality.

Ok, I am saying, why can't we assume that the first state of the universe has logged within it, the potential for everything else that comes after it?


That may be the case. However, the change we see day to day would still have to be changed by something else which actually exists, if we accept the principle of metaphysical change which the argument tries to prove. Unless you mean to say that the first state of the universe can right now, in this instant, be the cause of all the change we see around us...
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Rational_Thinker9119
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12/14/2013 11:48:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 12/14/2013 11:37:45 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:29:02 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:23:16 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:18:07 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:15:32 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:13:44 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:10:03 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 11:03:50 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 12/14/2013 10:53:01 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 12/14/2013 7:46:51 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Unless there was a state of affairs at which no universe existed, then the argument cannot even get off the ground. I think The Big Bang was the unmoved mover.

Read my other post. Aquinas' first way is entirely different than the Kalam cosmological argument. The two aren't similar at all.


This is an accidentally ordered series:

A causes B causes C causes D, etc. etc.
(Time----------------->)

This is an essentially ordered series.

A
causes
B
causes
C
causes
D
etc. etc.

(Time:---------------->)

They are the exact same...You just typed one vertically lol


And of course an essentially ordered series can exist or change through time, but the cause doesn't precede the other in a temporal non-essential sense.

Let me reword the first premise of the argument....

"Anything which is changing is being changed by another."

I really don't mean to be rude, but you don't understand the argument at all. I'm rather surprised actually, since you seem to be extremely knowledgeable about lots of other arguments for God's existence.

I've never studied it before, so perhaps I don't understand it. I don't take that personal at all. I think its a bad argument, so far as you have presented it, because it expects too much out of this unmoved mover, when only so little is needed to explain the world we live it.

Perhaps I've not presented it well, but as you understand the argument, I entirely agree with you. When I first read it, it seemed so stupid that I couldn't imagine how anyone like Aristotle could ever really think such BS to be true.

To me it seems like it expects to much out of the explanation of reality. You only need a state at t=0. Nothing else is needed.

I would ask you, why is assuming just a state at t=0 insufficient to explain reality?

Well the first way isn't arguing about the existence of things, or coming into being, or any sort of efficient causation. That's Aquinas' second way, which is extremely similar to this. I'd like to stress that the first way and the Kalam cosmological argument are extremely different. One deals with the temporal generation of the universe (as you well know) while the other deals with every instant of change in existing things we see.

The two don't seem mutually exclusive.


It's saying that among things which do exist any process of change is at every moment caused by another. It's essentially saying that if there isn't something causing the process of change at all times, then the process of change would not occur.

This leads to an infinite regress though. Why can't things just, well, change? Why does every change need to be be caused by more change?


Well supposedly an infinite regress can't happen, so it terminates in an unchanged changer. Only changing things are changed by another. So there's nothing wrong about saying "unchanged changer."

Here is where I sense a problem. Lets say God causes every moment of time (I assume this is what the argument argues, if not, then call me out on the straw-man), this itself presupposes a change in God. He jumps from:

(i) Creating time t

to

(ii) Creating time t2

Since God changes (or, "moves") due to the jump from creating time t, to creating time t2, is cannot be unmoved.

I suppose this principle of causality is a sort of variation of "ex nihilo nihil fit." A potential isn't an actually existing thing. In other words, it's not real. Something which isn't real can't act upon itself to make itself real. So for change to occur, that is, for a potential to be raised to actual, something actual or real must do the changing.

If time unfolds without any help, than how does that mean something is coming from nothing? The potential for each piece of time, would be logged in the last. Until we reach something that we cannot go past if we rewind the clock back (the first state of the universe).



The potential is raised to actuality, only by something in actuality.

Lets say the potentially for everything else besides the first state of the universe at t=0, existed at the first state of the universe at t=0 (which was actual). Then as the universe expands, there is a second, third, forth state ect..

I'm still failing to see why anything else is needed but the first state of the universe to explain reality.

The potential cannot raise itself to actuality, since it's not actual, but just a potential.

What in my scenario suggests that it endorses potential turning in actual, without an actualizer? That's not the view I put forward

Once the actuality stops raising the potential to actuality, it won't continue raising itself to actuality.

Ok.


Ok, I am saying, why can't we assume that the first state of the universe has logged within it, the potential for everything else that comes after it?


That may be the case. However, the change we see day to day would still have to be changed by something else which actually exists, if we accept the principle of metaphysical change which the argument tries to prove.

The change is caused by the change before it, and it caused by the by the change before it. It all stops at the first state of the universe (which has to be self-explanatory). Therefore, every moment of time is explained. What else is needed?

Unless you mean to say that the first state of the universe can right now, in this instant, be the cause of all the change we see around us...

I'm not saying it can, I'm just saying it doesn't need to. The argument expects more than what is needed out of an explanation of reality. All the change we see, are caused by the change before it. We don't need something existing simultaneously every moment in time sustaining it in being.

Again, if I straw-manned the argument; guide me through it. I want to understand.