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Izbo10s Philosophy Class-KCA

real_izbo10
Posts: 4
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6/20/2012 8:38:45 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Back by popular demand, rising from the ashes like the phoenix is the legend himself to teach the idiots of this board how to defeat common theistic arguments. This argument has convinced many of the stupid atheists of this board in the past that god is likely, Im looking at you MIG and cerebral(if either of those 2 idiots are still here). So here we go we will first present the argument:

Everything that has a beginning of its existence has a cause of its existence;
The universe has a beginning of its existence;

Therefore:

The universe has a cause of its existence.

This is the version posited by William Lane Craig. The problem with this argument is very simple it first commits the fallacy of composition. How you may ask, let me explain. Premise 1 is based on inductive reasoning that we have learned from observing the parts of the universe. We have never observed something that is not part of the universe, so we can only come to the conclusion that everything that begins to exist has a cause through the observation of these parts. Then comes the next premise which is the universe began to exist. This is problematic. Let me provide a clear definition of the fallacy of composition, since a majority of this board are not bright enough to grasp it: The fallacy of composition arises when one infers that something is true of the whole from the fact that it is true of some part of the whole (or even of every proper part).(http://en.wikipedia.org...).

No matter what you say this is always a fallacy. In that the premises do not necessitate the conclusion. This argument has taken something we know of the parts of the universe and blatantly attempted to attribute that to the entirety of the universe. Right from the beginning the argument has failed.

Now, if one does not accept that and still wants t be attributing things we know about the parts of the universe to the whole of the universe it gets worse much worse. Craig attempts to assert that the universe's cause must be personal, why he does this we don't know. What we actually do know is this: there are 2 possible sets of things. The first set being things caused by personal causes(we shall call this set P) and the second set things caused by natural causes that we have observed( we shall call this set N).

Now in set P we have only things on earth that are man made and you might include man if you want to count procreation. In set N we have a vast majority of things in the universes next cause being natural. Therefore inductively if we ignore the fallacy of composition in this argument we should conclude that the cause of the universe is not Personal at all, but instead would most likely be a natural cause. Especially since the universe itself is more like solar systems and galaxies which are naturally occurring events then it is like things we make. Night Night Kalams it was nice knowing you, now you have been put to bed.
real_izbo10
Posts: 4
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6/20/2012 8:47:59 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 8:45:50 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
This is actually pretty solid :)

How would you respond to the LCA?

You mean this:

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.
If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.
The universe is an existing thing.
Therefore the explanation of the universe is God
SuperRobotWars
Posts: 3,906
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6/20/2012 8:49:00 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Hm, I always thought the Universe was the end result of the death of a prior Universe. I must read more!
Minister Of Trolling
: At 12/6/2011 2:21:41 PM, badger wrote:
: ugly people should beat beautiful people ugly. simple! you'd be killing two birds with the one stone... women like violent men and you're making yourself more attractive, relatively. i met a blonde dude who was prettier than me not so long ago. he's not so pretty now! ha!
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: ...and well, he wasn't really prettier than me. he just had nice hair.
royalpaladin
Posts: 22,357
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6/20/2012 8:50:10 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 8:47:59 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:45:50 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
This is actually pretty solid :)

How would you respond to the LCA?

You mean this:

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.
If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.
The universe is an existing thing.
Therefore the explanation of the universe is God

Yeah. My attack is that they are assuming that the explanation is a sentient being. There is really no proof-it's just something that they made up. They don't really buy it though.

What do you think of this argument against God's existence?
http://www.debate.org...
real_izbo10
Posts: 4
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6/20/2012 8:57:39 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 8:50:10 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:47:59 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:45:50 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
This is actually pretty solid :)

How would you respond to the LCA?

You mean this:

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.
If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.
The universe is an existing thing.
Therefore the explanation of the universe is God

Yeah. My attack is that they are assuming that the explanation is a sentient being. There is really no proof-it's just something that they made up. They don't really buy it though.

What do you think of this argument against God's existence?
http://www.debate.org...

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.

Once again we are looking at the same fallacy of composition. The everything it refers to can only be inductively reasoned through parts of the universe.

Premise 2:

If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.

clearly an argument from ignorance and you can use my second part of the discussion on kalams to defeat this as well, being god is clearly a personal cause as the arguer is attempting to make it. This stage is a clear and blatant assertion, there is no support for this premise what so ever. An argument with a completely unfounded premise can be easily disregarded in that respect.

The universe is an existing thing.

Premise 3 actually hints towards a third fallacy, as even christian philosopher Plantinga points out these arguments attempt to make the universe just another mere thing. This is not the case the universe is the set of all things so the fallacy of composition applies, but I would also say the argument is committing the fallacy of equivocation by trying to misuse the word things to include the set of all things. That was Plantingas point when dismissing Cosmological arguments.
royalpaladin
Posts: 22,357
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6/20/2012 9:00:05 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 8:57:39 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:50:10 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:47:59 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:45:50 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
This is actually pretty solid :)

How would you respond to the LCA?

You mean this:

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.
If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.
The universe is an existing thing.
Therefore the explanation of the universe is God

Yeah. My attack is that they are assuming that the explanation is a sentient being. There is really no proof-it's just something that they made up. They don't really buy it though.

What do you think of this argument against God's existence?
http://www.debate.org...

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.

Once again we are looking at the same fallacy of composition. The everything it refers to can only be inductively reasoned through parts of the universe.

Premise 2:

If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.

clearly an argument from ignorance and you can use my second part of the discussion on kalams to defeat this as well, being god is clearly a personal cause as the arguer is attempting to make it. This stage is a clear and blatant assertion, there is no support for this premise what so ever. An argument with a completely unfounded premise can be easily disregarded in that respect.

The universe is an existing thing.

Premise 3 actually hints towards a third fallacy, as even christian philosopher Plantinga points out these arguments attempt to make the universe just another mere thing. This is not the case the universe is the set of all things so the fallacy of composition applies, but I would also say the argument is committing the fallacy of equivocation by trying to misuse the word things to include the set of all things. That was Plantingas point when dismissing Cosmological arguments.

Nice, thanks :)
real_izbo10
Posts: 4
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6/20/2012 9:04:54 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 9:00:05 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:57:39 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:50:10 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:47:59 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
At 6/20/2012 8:45:50 PM, royalpaladin wrote:
This is actually pretty solid :)

How would you respond to the LCA?

You mean this:

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.
If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.
The universe is an existing thing.
Therefore the explanation of the universe is God

Yeah. My attack is that they are assuming that the explanation is a sentient being. There is really no proof-it's just something that they made up. They don't really buy it though.

What do you think of this argument against God's existence?
http://www.debate.org...

Every existing thing has an explanation of its existence, either in the necessity of its own nature or in an external cause.

Once again we are looking at the same fallacy of composition. The everything it refers to can only be inductively reasoned through parts of the universe.

Premise 2:

If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God.

clearly an argument from ignorance and you can use my second part of the discussion on kalams to defeat this as well, being god is clearly a personal cause as the arguer is attempting to make it. This stage is a clear and blatant assertion, there is no support for this premise what so ever. An argument with a completely unfounded premise can be easily disregarded in that respect.

The universe is an existing thing.

Premise 3 actually hints towards a third fallacy, as even christian philosopher Plantinga points out these arguments attempt to make the universe just another mere thing. This is not the case the universe is the set of all things so the fallacy of composition applies, but I would also say the argument is committing the fallacy of equivocation by trying to misuse the word things to include the set of all things. That was Plantingas point when dismissing Cosmological arguments.

Nice, thanks :)

Im going to have to take my time to read your debate, I started reading it the argument is interesting. I want to see how your opponent responds. From what I have read he has supposed a god who knows all including the future, so at that point I may have turned to a little theological fatalism(logical contradiction between free will and omniscience). But, i have to see where you go.
SuburbiaSurvivor
Posts: 872
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6/21/2012 1:04:22 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/20/2012 8:38:45 PM, real_izbo10 wrote:
Back by popular demand, rising from the ashes like the phoenix is the legend himself to teach the idiots of this board how to defeat common theistic arguments. This argument has convinced many of the stupid atheists of this board in the past that god is likely, Im looking at you MIG and cerebral(if either of those 2 idiots are still here). So here we go we will first present the argument:

Everything that has a beginning of its existence has a cause of its existence;
The universe has a beginning of its existence;

Therefore:

The universe has a cause of its existence.

This is the version posited by William Lane Craig. The problem with this argument is very simple it first commits the fallacy of composition. How you may ask, let me explain. Premise 1 is based on inductive reasoning that we have learned from observing the parts of the universe. We have never observed something that is not part of the universe, so we can only come to the conclusion that everything that begins to exist has a cause through the observation of these parts. Then comes the next premise which is the universe began to exist. This is problematic. Let me provide a clear definition of the fallacy of composition, since a majority of this board are not bright enough to grasp it: The fallacy of composition arises when one infers that something is true of the whole from the fact that it is true of some part of the whole (or even of every proper part).(http://en.wikipedia.org...).

No matter what you say this is always a fallacy. In that the premises do not necessitate the conclusion. This argument has taken something we know of the parts of the universe and blatantly attempted to attribute that to the entirety of the universe. Right from the beginning the argument has failed.

Now, if one does not accept that and still wants t be attributing things we know about the parts of the universe to the whole of the universe it gets worse much worse. Craig attempts to assert that the universe's cause must be personal, why he does this we don't know. What we actually do know is this: there are 2 possible sets of things. The first set being things caused by personal causes(we shall call this set P) and the second set things caused by natural causes that we have observed( we shall call this set N).

Now in set P we have only things on earth that are man made and you might include man if you want to count procreation. In set N we have a vast majority of things in the universes next cause being natural. Therefore inductively if we ignore the fallacy of composition in this argument we should conclude that the cause of the universe is not Personal at all, but instead would most likely be a natural cause. Especially since the universe itself is more like solar systems and galaxies which are naturally occurring events then it is like things we make. Night Night Kalams it was nice knowing you, now you have been put to bed.

Ugh... Really? P1 is based on the fact that if something can come from nothing uncaused, it is inexplicable why anything and everything can't come from nothing uncaused. Srsly, gaiz, srsly.
"I'm going to tell you something that you're never going to forget, SuburbiaSurvivor. Women... Are just human beings"
DanteAlighieri
Posts: 42
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6/21/2012 1:27:29 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Craig's premise that the universe began to exist 13.7 billion years ago is rational and can be plausibly accepted. Of course, his anti-infinitist arguments are really bad, but I have no problem accepting that the universe began to exist. The problem with Craig's KCA is that the first premise can be very easily denied once you realize that (a) equivocates between "beginning to exist" and "coming to exist" (b) his causal premise commits you to that there could be timeless causation from a nonphysical being without any extant physicality, which basically renders the transfer of intuitions worthless and (c) timeless causation is arguably incoherent. There is also the fact that his causal premise contradicts his position of libertarian free will since he invokes a lack of mechanical cause (i.e. talk for something indeterministically coming to be, an UNCAUSED event) to argue that the cause of the universe is personal. His use of intuitions are slipshod and all over the place. The causal premise has no real support for what Craig wants to do with it (hence there are no good reasons to accept it) and it can be safely rejected given the weird absurdities and arguably, contradictions, it leads to.

The problem with most if not all of the modern modal LCAs is that the causal premise invoked is question-begging. It's often posed in the form of "possibly every contingent fact has an explanation/cause/being that explains its existence" or "every contingent fact/object possibly has an explanation/cause/being that explains its existence" or something or another, tacitly including of course the whole of all contingent facts/objects. But, of course, it is not possible, ipso facto, that there is a contingent explanation/cause/being who explains all contingent facts/objects. An explanation of all contingent facts/objects is possible if and only if a necessary explanation/cause/being that explains its existence. So, really, the causal premise says this

"possibly, there is a necessary explanation/cause/being that explains the existence of all contingent facts/objects"

But, per S5 and its Euclidean accessibility relation which is also an equivalence relation, <>[]p is the same as asserting []p. So, the very first premise is assuming that there is in fact a necessary explanation/cause/being that explains the existence in order to prove so. This is as question-begging as they come, in a manner similar to most, if not all, modal ontological arguments.

The second major problem is the causal premise is arguably incoherent. As I have argued elsewhere: http://www.freeratio.org.... I don't have the space to completely outline the argument so please look at the link if you're interested in a defense of the van Inwagen objection, which is fatal to the causal premise.

I've changed some of my views on the particular compatibilist view in tha post, but I still hold to the first part of the post. In general, modern modal cosmological arguments seek to avoid modal collapse by appealing to the free action of a necessary being. Ignoring the problem with libertarianism, this is actually no explanation at all, since a being performing such and such act has no further explanation. To wit, the cosmological argument ends up pushing back the brute fact of the cosmos to the brute fact of a necessary being. Special pleading abounds here. The name of the game in modern modal cosmological arguments is to construct further and further ad hoc causal premises and to take everyday intuitions to where they have never gone.

What explanatory work has the theist actually done in this argument? None whatsoever since there is no further explanation of that the necessary being actualizes such and such world. Indeed, I do not think it can have any explanatory power whatsoever. The cosmological argument seeks to "preserve" more or less the original modal space before it started. We should still be able to make most of the modal claims we care about, with respect to contingency anyway. But this means that the necessary being in fact explains nothing at all since any fact whatsoever is "explained" by that the necessary being wanted it to be. Why? There is no further reason (expect some obfuscation about free acts being "self-caused"). But, it is obvious this hypothesis explains absolutely <b>nothing</b> about why a particular totality of contingent facts/objects obtained.

Sometimes, you will see appeals to probability, which baffle me. Ignoring the above problems for a second, what does it mean to quantify probability over all the possible worlds? In what sense is a probability meaningful here, since we are talking about a totality of possibilities greater than any cardinality - an "absurd infinite" as Cantor would say. Moreover, what explains this particular probability distribution? Well, again, we are stuck with a brute fact and we are forced to ask why we would ever find such a useless causal premise acceptable to begin with.

For more on this, I cannot recommend enough a great summary of the problem with positing probabilities as a way out of the van Inwagen objection to modal collapse: http://omnisaffirmatioestnegatio.wordpress.com...

My diagnosis is that like modal ontological arguments, all the extant modal cosmological arguments are question begging and worse, the causal premise invoked has very compelling reasons to outright reject it. So, I regard the entire species of cosmological argument to be entirely unconvincing.
Stephen_Hawkins
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6/21/2012 1:28:49 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
The thing is, many (Craig) don't claim the first premise is from observation of the inside of the universe (Aquinas, Craig) but say it is "philosophically unobjectionable" (Craig) or that it is "absurd to reject" (Craig) to it having a priori proof (Craig) to objecting to whether the composition is a fallacy in this case (Anscombe, Copleston).
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

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DanteAlighieri
Posts: 42
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6/21/2012 1:36:50 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
I think the a priori arguments to that conclusion are pretty silly and generally rest on obfuscation. The main line supporting the causal premise is intuitions about everyday objects that don't neatly transfer over. An absolutely excellent duo of papers taking Craig apart on this are Morriston's. See the below, including Craig's response.

Morriston 2000: http://www.colorado.edu...

Craig's rejoinder in http://www.reasonablefaith.org...

Morriston's reply: http://www.colorado.edu...