Monday, July 17, 2006

No God Exists

No god exists, or ever did exist. Do pink elephants exist? The answer is no for two reasons. First, it is contradictory in the nature of an elephant for it to be pink. The properties of living skin, and especially that of mammals, are such that it can have certain shades, such as beige or brown, but not pink.

Second, the existence of a pink elephant has not been proven. In the absence of such proof, it does not exist. The burden of proof always lies with the person who makes an assertion. One can only accept as knowledge, or even potential knowledge, that for which some evidence has been provided. If I say, "There is an elephant behind that door," it may be true if there is corroborating evidence such as: the door is the size of a garage door; you are standing at a zoo; there are animal smells in the air, etc.

If the burden of proof did not lie with the person who asserts the positive, then there would be cognitive chaos. Anyone can make any arbitrary claim, and that claim would have the same status as something actually known. For example, with regard to pink elephants, I would have to carefully check every door to see if there was an elephant behind it, before I could walk by. But, what about evil dwarves, or aliens with death rays, or any other demoniacal entity someone could dream up? In life, I give no thought to such possibilities, BECAUSE NO EVIDENCE HAS BEEN PROVIDED THAT THEY EXIST. So, in the absence of evidence, I act as if THEY DO NOT EXIST. In other words, THE ARBITRARY DOES NOT EXIST. The concept of god is just such an arbitrary concept, on par with pink elephants, or evil green dwarfs, etc.

I am an atheist because the concept of god is contradictory (point no. 1 above) and because there is no evidence for the existence of a god (point 2 above). There are many contradictions in the concept of god. To name just one, "Who created god?" If god is omnipotent and created the universe, then who created god? Another god? If so, then who created that god? God either has an infinite series of predecessor gods, or simply exists with no cause. But, if god can exist with no cause, than so can the universe. One does not need a god for the universe to exist.

Point no. 2, there is no evidence for a god. If there were, what would it say? Could the god be omniscent and omnipresent? For example, I see beauty in the world. Does that mean there is a god? If so, does that god extend beyond this world? Does it include me? Does it include ugly things and malformed things? But if it does not, then it is not omnipresent, which is one of the characteristics of god.

Defining god means delimiting god, and when god is delimited, he is WITHIN the universe, no longer the creator of the universe. He just becomes another entity within the universe, for example, an old man with a beard. However, if he is within the universe, he is no longer god. Which brings us back to point no. 1. Not only is there no evidence for god, but the concept of god is contradictory.

For these reasons, I say, "God does not exist."

But if God does not exist, how do we get meaning out of life? How do we establish morality? These are important questions, and I will save them for a future post. Let me just say now that I am an atheist whose life has meaning, and I believe in a definite right and wrong. I did not need any god for that!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So what evidence would be sufficient to "prove" that God exists? Would it ever be enough, or would you attempt to simply explain it away as a natural phenomena. To many, God has already proven as much to mankind, and those who don't take the given evidence are either ignorant or arrogant.

So let's look at some of your arguments:
"If god is omnipotent and created the universe, then who created god?"
The very idea of cause and effect is only relevant so long as you remain within the constraints of time itself. To understand how God could have always existed, you have to think out of the box of time.

God and Extra Time Dimensions

"For anyone willing to stretch his or her mind a little, an answer is available, one that represents both the truth of Scripture and the facts of nature. Both sources affirm that the universe, with everything it contains, is confined to a single time line (or dimension) and is further confined to moving in one direction along that line. Even if we were to experience the stretching, or dilation, of time by moving at velocities approaching the speed of light, we could neither stop nor reverse time's arrow. The question of God's beginning reflects our understanding of these principles: Whatever exists has a starting point along the line of time and was caused by something or someone with an earlier starting point. In other words, any entity confined to a single line of time, in which time cannot be stopped or reversed, must have a moment of beginning or creation.

An uncaused effect, a beginningless anything or anyone, contradicts our experiential knowledge of reality--but not reality itself. For both the Bible and scientific investigation present us with the reality of a Being who has the capacity to create our time dimension and fix its direction, a Being who possesses apparently unlimited time capacities.

For our limited imagination's sake, however, we can consider what is possible for Him in a two-dimensional time frame which would constitute a time plane. Just how many time dimensions, or their equivalent, God accesses we do not know, but we have theoretical, observational, and theological proofs for these two dimensions. As figure 7.1 (page 74) shows, a plane of time offers the possibility of an infinite number of time lines running in an infinite number of directions. God has the capacity, thus, to move and operate backwards and forwards along an infinitely long time line, or along as many time lines, infinite or otherwise, as He chooses. He can operate, if He desires, on a time line parallel to our time line or on one intersecting our time line, but He is not compelled to do either. Thus, God has the capacity to cause effects for infinite time on innumerable time lines that never intersect or touch our time line. As such, we could point to no beginning and no end for Him. Since beginnings only make sense where time in some way is linear, God must be a beginningless Being. He has always existed and will always remain. He never had a creation event.

This illustration helps us to picture more clearly how the words of John 1:3 and Colossians 1:16-17 can be true. Just this one extra time dimension releases Him from the necessity of a beginning--and an ending, for that matter. As these verses declare, He and He alone was not created."

Ross, Hugh. Beyond the Cosmos. Colorado Springs: NavPress Publishing Group. 1996. 73-75.

"But, if god can exist with no cause, than so can the universe."
Not exactly. This conclusion is actually illogical. If the universe is eternal and has always existed, it is infinitely old. "If it is infinitely old, then an infinite amount of time would have to have elapsed before (say) today. And so an infinite number of days must have been completed--one day succeeding another, one bit of time being added to what went before--in order for the present day to arrive." But the fact of our existence means that there is an end to the infinite succession of time that must have passed before today, which is not possible for an infinite, unending universe. The universe, therefore, is finite.

If the universe exists as a series of expansionary and contractionary cyclical periods, it would become increasingly disordered after each cycle, such that each successive universe is colder. Therefore, if there was no beginning to it, and its existence extends infinitely in the past, we must be in a universe of maximum entropy.

"One does not need a god for the universe to exist."
Then where does existence come from?
"Existence is like a gift given from cause to effect. If there is no one who has the gift, the gift cannot be passed down the chain of receivers, however long or short the chain may be. If everyone has to borrow a certain book, but no one actually has it, then no one will ever get it. If there is no God who has existence by his own eternal nature, then the gift of existence cannot be passed down the chain of creatures and we can never get it. But we do get it; we exist. Therefore there must exist a God; an Uncaused Being who does not have to receive existence like us--and like every other link in the chain of receivers."

"there is no evidence for a god"
There is plenty of evidence, people just fail to see it.
"Show me proof there is a God you say. I say use your telescopes to look to the heavens, and tell me how there could not be a God! You ask what does God look like. I say, where did that question come from? The answers are one and the same. Do you not see God in your science? How can you miss Him! You proclaim that even the slightest change in the force of gravity or the weight of an atom would have rendered our universe a lifeless mist rather than a magnificent sea of heavenly bodies, and yet you fail to see God's hand in this? Is it really so much easier to believe that we simply chose the right card from a deck of billions? Have we become so spiritually bankrupt that we would rather believe in mathematical impossibility than in a greater power than us?"

"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out to all the earth, their words to the end of the world." (Psalm 19:1-4)

"Defining god means delimiting god, and when god is delimited, he is WITHIN the universe, no longer the creator of the universe."
Physicists define the nature of bubble universes and parallel dimensions, but that does nothing to delimit them nor place them within our singular universe. Similarly, saying what characteristics we expect an ultimate god to posses does not delimit him nor place him within the universe. It does serve to place the idea of him within our human universe of ideas, simply so we can attempt to better comprehend him. But it doesn't place limits. We know that what we expect (that which no greater can be conceived) is probably just the beginning of the infinity of his greatness. But knowing that does nothing to delimit him.

"But if God does not exist, how do we get meaning out of life? How do we establish morality?"
Existentialism posits the position that man creates his own meaning and his own morality.

"Let me just say now that I am an atheist whose life has meaning, and I believe in a definite right and wrong. I did not need any god for that!"
You are a slave. Choose your master: nature, man, yourself, or God.

Choosing nature is choosing something lower than yourself. You are an automaton, subject to abiding by a headless law. (Certain "reason" falls under this.)

Choosing man is choosing something equal, but indefinite. Truth is what is popular, and the majority rules. Ethics and morality change to the times.

Choosing yourself is singularly indefinite. There is nothing that absolutely binds your ethics. You can change them whenever you like to whatever suits you.

Choosing God is the only thing which has both a mind and definitiveness.