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Why Can't God Have Parts?

n7
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4/15/2014 7:03:56 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Parts? What do you mean? Pseudo-physical parts, like private parts? Or parts as in something like multiple personalities.
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philochristos
Posts: 2,614
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4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
Rational_Thinker9119
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4/15/2014 7:34:59 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM, philochristos wrote:
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?

I'm not sure, I really have the Trinity in mind when I think of this. If the Trinity is the correct view, then wouldn't this means that God necessarily has parts?
philochristos
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4/15/2014 7:54:15 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 7:34:59 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM, philochristos wrote:
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?

I'm not sure, I really have the Trinity in mind when I think of this. If the Trinity is the correct view, then wouldn't this means that God necessarily has parts?

I don't know. On the one hand, each person is not 1/3 God. They each animate the whole being of God, so they are each 100% God. But since they are not each other, then at least the personhood of God comes in parts. Each is 1/3 of the personhood of God. So I guess you could say there's a sense in which God has parts.

I suppose you could compartmentalize his attributes, too, and say that his attributes are parts. That would be an odd use of the word "parts," though.

Usually when I think of "parts," I think of the pieces that make up a thing. Like a card house is made up of different cards. In that sense, I don't think God is made up of parts. There are not pieces that, when put together in a certain way, make up God.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
TheOncomingStorm
Posts: 249
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4/15/2014 7:54:38 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 7:34:59 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM, philochristos wrote:
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?

I'm not sure, I really have the Trinity in mind when I think of this. If the Trinity is the correct view, then wouldn't this means that God necessarily has parts?

The Trinity is a little difficult to explain, although I think you're right that it means God has "parts."

As in, there are a parts that perform different jobs. With the Trinity in mind the simple parts/jobs/personalities would be (in the most accurate concise explanation):

Jesus: the part of God that relates to humans.

God (the father): the ultimate designer of everything.

Holy Spirit: the part of God that reveals truth.

Since none of these parts contradict each other in performance (unity of a goal), yet they all have noticeably different "jobs" we can call them three parts of the same God.

That would be the most simple explanation I could come up with for why God can have multiple parts and still be one God.
Official "Director of Weather and Hyperbole in the Maximum Degree of Mice and Men" of the FREEDO bureaucracy.
philochristos
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4/15/2014 8:07:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 7:34:59 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM, philochristos wrote:
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?

I'm not sure, I really have the Trinity in mind when I think of this. If the Trinity is the correct view, then wouldn't this means that God necessarily has parts?

I'm about to ask Greg Koukl on Stand to Reason what he thinks. I'm on hold right now.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
philochristos
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4/15/2014 8:54:56 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 8:07:50 PM, philochristos wrote:
At 4/15/2014 7:34:59 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/15/2014 7:07:28 PM, philochristos wrote:
He'd have to be physical to have parts, wouldn't he?

I'm not sure, I really have the Trinity in mind when I think of this. If the Trinity is the correct view, then wouldn't this means that God necessarily has parts?

I'm about to ask Greg Koukl on Stand to Reason what he thinks. I'm on hold right now.

He wasn't really sure, but he said basically the same thing I said about how "parts" implies that there are pieces that God is made out of, which isn't the case.
"Not to know of what things one should demand demonstration, and of what one should not, argues want of education." ~Aristotle

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." ~Aristotle
Rational_Thinker9119
Posts: 9,054
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4/15/2014 11:28:42 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Also, some theists say that God is both in time, and timeless. But this is only possible if part of God is temporal and part of him is timeless.
SovereignDream
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4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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4/16/2014 7:51:30 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

What SovereignDream said. Having metaphysical components implies that God is made out of act/potency or essence/existence or form/matter. What God is, and whether God is are then two different things. But God being the purely necessary thing, is pure subsistent being. However, you can't say "one half of pure being, and the other half of pure being". It doesn't work like that.

The trinity, I think, is God existing as three persons. I'm not sure what that means though... I tried reading some Aquinas, but it was pretty confusing. http://www.newadvent.org...
"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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4/16/2014 7:57:45 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Ah got parts, mothef****, take a good hard look at mah motherf***** parts!

Lolol.

And then when you add Jesus into the mix, everything you had about God being all nice and metaphysically neat and tidy gets all thrown out of wack. But hey, that's why it's called revealed and not natural theology. Just to mess us up.
"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."
Geogeer
Posts: 4,274
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4/16/2014 9:39:25 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because God is spirit and infinite. To have "parts" is to be finite in nature.

If you look at the trinity there are 3 persons in one godhead. Each has the full attributes of God, but they are part of the one God.
Rational_Thinker9119
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4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.
"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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4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.
"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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4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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4/16/2014 11:59:33 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?

Because in order TO BE the parts have to be connected. There's nothing about them that says they need to be connected. They could possibly not be connected. It's a form of the principle of sufficient reason.. so they need something outside of themselves to make them "be".

I mean, if something has a distinct essence/existence, then what it is, is completely different from whether it is. So the essence needs to be put together with existence.

That's the general thinking I believe... It makes sense to me and I believe it, but yeah... most atheists would disagree.
"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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4/16/2014 12:01:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?

Let me put it this way...

P1: IF (i) whatever has metaphysical parts needs a cause and (ii) nothing can cause itself and (iii) an infinite regress is impossible, THEN there must be that which is uncaused and is not composed of parts.
P2: i, ii, and iii are true.
C: There must be that which is uncaused and not composed of parts.
"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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4/16/2014 12:04:31 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 11:59:33 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?

Because in order TO BE the parts have to be connected. There's nothing about them that says they need to be connected. They could possibly not be connected.

Says who? Maybe the parts being connected in that way is inherent to the parts themselves.

It's a form of the principle of sufficient reason.. so they need something outside of themselves to make them "be".

I don't see why that is necessary.


I mean, if something has a distinct essence/existence, then what it is, is completely different from whether it is. So the essence needs to be put together with existence.

That's the general thinking I believe... It makes sense to me and I believe it, but yeah... most atheists would disagree.
zmikecuber
Posts: 4,093
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4/16/2014 12:07:34 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 12:04:31 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:59:33 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?

Because in order TO BE the parts have to be connected. There's nothing about them that says they need to be connected. They could possibly not be connected.

Says who? Maybe the parts being connected in that way is inherent to the parts themselves.


I'm just trying to explain to you the reasoning behind it, lol.

The parts aren't "things" in themselves. For something to be a "thing" it has to have an essence and an existence. If something's essence were necessarily conjoined to its existence, I think then it would be impossible for it to not exist.

It's a form of the principle of sufficient reason.. so they need something outside of themselves to make them "be".

I don't see why that is necessary.



I mean, if something has a distinct essence/existence, then what it is, is completely different from whether it is. So the essence needs to be put together with existence.

That's the general thinking I believe... It makes sense to me and I believe it, but yeah... most atheists would disagree.
"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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4/16/2014 12:13:19 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/16/2014 12:07:34 PM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:04:31 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:59:33 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:55:39 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:54:23 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:52:02 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 11:13:47 AM, zmikecuber wrote:
At 4/16/2014 9:42:01 AM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
At 4/16/2014 12:50:48 AM, SovereignDream wrote:
At 4/15/2014 5:18:49 PM, Rational_Thinker9119 wrote:
Theists say that God cannot have parts.... Why not?

Because being metaphysically composite implies having a mixture of act and potency, and so implies contingency.

And why does it imply that?

Because self-causation is impossible. For something to persist in being is for its parts to be united to each other. Something can't cause itself, so it requires something else to cause that.

That's the general idea I think.

The idea is that God doesn't cause himself, but that God doesn't need a cause, because he just is pure being itself.

Why would God having parts = God causing himself?

If something has parts, then it has to have something to conjoin the parts. I never really said that God having parts = God causing himself, just that God would need some cause. And causa sui is impossible. So we'd be left to an infinite regress, and ultimately nothing is explained.

So God can't have parts, since he would require a cause then, and causa sui is impossible.

But you have to accept the idea of causation and the impossibility of causa sui.. which most classical theists do.

I still don't get it. Why would God need a cause if he has parts?

Because in order TO BE the parts have to be connected. There's nothing about them that says they need to be connected. They could possibly not be connected.

Says who? Maybe the parts being connected in that way is inherent to the parts themselves.


I'm just trying to explain to you the reasoning behind it, lol.

The parts aren't "things" in themselves. For something to be a "thing" it has to have an essence and an existence. If something's essence were necessarily conjoined to its existence, I think then it would be impossible for it to not exist.

What's the problem with it being impossible for it not to exist, especially when dealing with God and his potential parts?

It's a form of the principle of sufficient reason.. so they need something outside of themselves to make them "be".

I don't see why that is necessary.



I mean, if something has a distinct essence/existence, then what it is, is completely different from whether it is. So the essence needs to be put together with existence.

That's the general thinking I believe... It makes sense to me and I believe it, but yeah... most atheists would disagree.