• Christoffer
    486
    Firstly I need to point out that I have no academic philosophical training and that my level of skills in philosophy is a result of autodidactive studies so I might stumble a bit.

    Every time I hear the cosmological argument or, in recent years gaining popularity, the kalām argument, it's generally based around a fundamental flaw in which it assumes properties of the first cause in order to call it god or gods without there ever being any support through the premisses about the properties of that first cause. If that first cause is, let's say an "anti-universe", a negative mass and energy that reach a fulcrum point that balance over into a burst that we would then call big bang, then the first cause is just a pile of negative energy and mass, not a god. But those arguments are used as arguments for god, which is by any standards around, a pure fallacy.

    I still thought about some inductive way to argue against the cosmological argument outside of the fallacy and thought that there are attributes of scientific history that makes it problematic for any kind of those causality arguments or any argument for the existence of god through our lack of knowledge, since they are based around the assumptions that we would never know more than we know today. So...

    - Religious explanations of the world have always been changed, removed or adjusted to fit the narrative of science based facts.

    - Scientific history has never stopped discovering new scientific theories or stopped being able to explain the previous unexplainable.

    - All arguments for god or religious belief sticks to areas in which science has not yet been able to reach an explanation or conclusion.

    - Claiming that there are things we cannot ever know assumes that we already know the future of knowledge and discoveries.

    - We have always claimed there are things we cannot do or know, but scientific discoveries and theories have proved these claims wrong over and over.

    - Nothing does in any logical or rational way prevent mankind to know all aspects of the universe and existence. All claims that we can't, assumes that we know that our future solutions won't work against future problems. Example; if we claim that humans will never fly, we disregard any coming possible solution to the problem of flight and when we solved that problem, we were able to fly, proving the negative claims wrong.

    - Without any natural disasters or events that makes mankind go extinct, or events that tumble our civilisation into forgotten history; the history of science, discoveries and future explanations of the world and universe will continue indefinitely.


    By conclusion, I would say that without interruptions to our history of science, we would over a long enough timespan, by the logic of the above, reach a conclusion of all things. It would not necessarily mean that we would be able to form the universe by our will because of that knowledge, just as we aren't able to form things in science today that we know everything about, but we would know everything.

    As a reversal of the cosmological argument, this points instead to the process in front of us, rather than causation behind us. It also points out that as scientific progress continues, there will be less and less explanations from the religious and spiritual, since there will be less and less things that are unexplained about our world, universe and existence.

    Therefor I would say that while the cosmological or kalām argument assumes properties of it's concluding first cause, my argument only assumes that the properties of our history of science continues as it always have. In terms of logic, I find it more logical to assume that our scientific history continues into the future in the same way it's always been doing. Without interruptions to our civilisation, it will then continue as long as mankind exists. So, a shorter version of a counter argument to the cosmological argument would be:

    - Science have continuously proven religion and spiritual belief wrong each time a conclusion explains the unexplainable.

    - Science have continuously proven things, previously claimed to be unprovable.

    - Science will without interruptions continue to reach conclusions and discover answers to existence, nature and the universe for as long as mankind and our progressive history of science, survives.


    Therefor, science will eventually, without interruptions, explain all things and therefor the probability that religion and belief in god is correct is extremely low since the logical progression of science into the future points to a probable statistic of always proving religion and the existence of god wrong, based on the statistics of previous discoveries and it's relation to religious belief. Science, by it's previous history and predictions of the statistical probability for it's future history therefor points to no logical place for religion or god over scientific solutions and explanations. Causality as proof of a god is therefor wrong since we would probably solve that line of causality through science and if so, the properties of a proposed god as the first cause is under our understanding and control, meaning it cannot be a god if we gain the same level of knowledge as it.

    ---

    On top of this, we could argue against this with that when science reach that level of understanding of the universe, we essentially transcend through that knowledge into becoming godlike beings. Such discoveries would possibly equal to things like eternal life, warp transportation through space and a civilisation that might evolve into a version of mankind that cannot even be called mankind anymore.

    So, a follow up question would be, if all knowledge were ours, would we still be humans? Or would we have evolved, through knowledge into a new kind of being, not by divinity, but by our knowledge, augmenting ourselves into a self-controlled evolution?

    Essentially becoming a cosmological irony, in which we used science to prove that god doesn't exist and explain everything about our universe, but becoming such agents of the universe that we would by any standard measurements be considered gods ourselves.
  • SophistiCat
    724
    Every time I hear the cosmological argument or, in recent years gaining popularity, the kalām argument, it's generally based around a fundamental flaw in which it assumes properties of the first cause in order to call it god or gods without there ever being any support through the premisses about the properties of that first cause. If that first cause is, let's say an "anti-universe", a negative mass and energy that reach a fulcrum point that balance over into a burst that we would then call big bang, then the first cause is just a pile of negative energy and mass, not a god. But those arguments are used as arguments for god, which is by any standards around, a pure fallacy.Christoffer

    I don't know which examples of cosmological arguments you have in mind, but the ones I am familiar with mainly trade on the one feature of the first cause that cannot be denied (short of denying the existence of the first cause): it's being first, uncaused cause. This is what's supposed to make it metaphysically special, elevating it above any natural cause that we know or can hypothesize. Everything else that is said about that first cause more-or-less flows from that.
  • Christoffer
    486


    That's the same kind of argument, for which I mean that the attributes of such a first uncaused cause cannot be described as God in any terms of definitions based on how humans describe a God. The uncaused might just be a negative balance of matter and energy, which would mean that it just is, not that it is a beginning. Like a kind of hypothesis of circular entropy. But my argument aims to either way prove the cosmological argument problematic, since if the scientific progress going into the future ends up explaning everything at some point and that would mean we will eventually explain the first cause. When that happens, we have a higher understanding than such a god, meaning that according to our measurements it would not be a god since we know more, or if it's just a process and not with any agency over the causality it set in motion then any description of it as God would be like describing gravity to be God. It would be as ridiculous as when people thousands of years ago worshiped the sun which we now know is just a bunch of fusion in space. When taking in the progress of science over time, any argument for God and religion becomes problematic or false. Science has a flawless track record of explaning the universe and life compared to religion and nothing points it to be in any other way going forward. So the probability of science in the end explaning and answering every question we can think of is statistically overkilling the idea of religion explaning things or an existence of God as an explanation. It also means that when the answers are there, no God can be present at the same time since it requires it to be higher in knowledge than us. If we answer everything of the universe, if we in the end know every detail about how the universe is like it is and even what is beyond, then by the possibility of that knowledge alone it would make a God impossible.

    It is more logical that we would, after a long enough time frame, have answered every question about how the universe is like it is, than that there are any answers in religion or that there exists a God.
  • SophistiCat
    724
    The explanandum of a cosmological argument is not the sum of the physical features of the first cause. For that, cosmological arguments are usually content to defer to science. If anything, some of these arguments present an overly confident view of science. For example, proponents of the Kalam cosmological argument, such as W. L. Craig, insist that cosmologists have already settled the scientific question of whether the universe has a beginning in time (which he identifies with the "Big Bang"), whereas in reality the question remains open.

    Nothing that future science could add to its picture of the early universe could address the problem that cosmological arguments claim to raise and resolve. The only resolution that could satisfy proponents of a cosmological argument is one that proves the first cause to be necessary in the appropriate sense (depending on the type of the argument). But such a resolution could hardly be expected from science. Science tells us what is (the brute fact), not what must be. Only logic or metaphysics can claim to do the latter.

    At this point I recommend that you actually take a closer look at these arguments, because I get an impression that you have a very vague idea of what they are saying. The SEP has an extensive introduction: Cosmological Argument.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.6k
    If all knowledge were ours, would we still be humans? Or would we have evolved, through knowledge into a new kind of being, not by divinity, but by our knowledge, augmenting ourselves into a self-controlled evolution?Christoffer

    All the knowledge that "is" has always been ours, hasn't it? Who else possessed knowledge? Even when we thought that the world was made of fire, water, earth, and air, and that we were the center of the cosmos, all that knowledge was all ours. Our knowledge is much greater now than it was 2500 years ago. It is greater than it was 25 years ago.

    It seems like we have already evolved into a 'new kind of being'. We have been 'homo sapiens' for what... 2, 3, 400,000 years, but our evolution either took a turn, or maybe it just finally paid off, somewhere around 10,000 to 30,000 years ago. (It depends on what one uses as a sign of major advance -- cave paintings or agriculture or writing.) The last 300 years (Age of Enlightenment) is perhaps another turning point.

    Essentially becoming a cosmological irony, in which we used science to prove that god doesn't exist and explain everything about our universe, but becoming such agents of the universe that we would by any standard measurements be considered gods ourselves.Christoffer

    Godhood is generally a true diagnostic test for first-class hubris. We have quite a ways to go before we will be all-knowing, everywhere present, and omnipotent.

    My personal view -- and it is neither original nor mine alone -- is that we invented the gods. Our conception of gods has evolved along with us. We progressed from gods of trees and rocks to sky gods. I think its progress, anyway, moving from the concrete to the abstract. We need not be embarrassed by our cultural creations; the gods are no more embarrassing than Hobbits or Superman.

    The First Cause is a problem, because "what came before what came before what came before... is perhaps infinitely recursive. Maybe at the end of an exceeding long chain of causations we will find a willful deity who got the ball rolling.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    All the knowledge that "is" has always been ours, hasn't it? Who else possessed knowledge? Even when we thought that the world was made of fire, water, earth, and air, and that we were the center of the cosmos, all that knowledge was all ours. Our knowledge is much greater now than it was 2500 years ago. It is greater than it was 25 years ago.Bitter Crank

    the actual history of science is a very long line of succeeding theories - each proving the last one false, incomplete or seriously flawed. And an equally long line of people who believed as true each of those false or incomplete theories to be completely true in their time.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.6k
    Of course. You might be right; maybe black holes will turn out to be the lairs of dragons guarding their gold, but probably not. Not every theory has been succeeded by its opposite (except in nutrition where every recommendation is flipped a week later. Fat is good today, bad last week; sugar will kill you this week, just make you fat last week; 1 drink is healthy for you last week; this week, no alcohol whatsoever is safe.)

    Once the anatomists in the late 18th century nailed down quite a bit of how the body worked, their findings have held true. The germ theory (Koch's Postulates) have held good for 150 years. On the other hand, the discovery of plate tectonics dumped a batch of theories that turned out to be false. But, I bet you a 6 pack of beer that plate tectonics is still valid at the end of this century.

    What happens more often these days is that MORE information is found, showing previous theories to be incomplete. Less often are scientific theories revealed as just plain wrong, or not even wrong.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k

    Agree, and probably should have qualified the post some. But in general stand by the point that each successive generation has believed in the truth of their respective science. This is not a knock on science, it is a comment on the hubris of the human condition.
  • Christoffer
    486
    All the knowledge that "is" has always been ours, hasn't it? Who else possessed knowledge? Even when we thought that the world was made of fire, water, earth, and air, and that we were the center of the cosmos, all that knowledge was all ours. Our knowledge is much greater now than it was 2500 years ago. It is greater than it was 25 years ago.Bitter Crank

    How do we know there aren't other sentient beings in the universe that possess other knowledge? And isn't this a bit semantic? "All knowledge" is referring to knowledge of all things. Maybe need to rephrase in the argument, but that's the pragmatic meaning.

    It seems like we have already evolved into a 'new kind of being'. We have been 'homo sapiens' for what... 2, 3, 400,000 years, but our evolution either took a turn, or maybe it just finally paid off, somewhere around 10,000 to 30,000 years ago. (It depends on what one uses as a sign of major advance -- cave paintings or agriculture or writing.) The last 300 years (Age of Enlightenment) is perhaps another turning point.Bitter Crank

    I'm speaking of the self-controlled evolution through the consequence of knowing all things. If we know everything, we would likely be able to control everything and that is what would make us godlike.

    Godhood is generally a true diagnostic test for first-class hubris. We have quite a ways to go before we will be all-knowing, everywhere present, and omnipotent.Bitter Crank

    I'm not referring to the usual omnipotent omnipresent omniscient omnibenevolent type of God, but godlike. And I am speaking of the consequence of the evolution of our species into the future, not who we are right now or what our potential today is. The argument is about the logical development of humanity if not stopped by things like mass-extinction events.

    My personal view -- and it is neither original nor mine alone -- is that we invented the gods.Bitter Crank

    Mine too, I'm not arguing for the existence of God with some convoluted logic, I'm talking about humanity become "godlike" if we reach the level of evolution or controlled evolution when we know all about the universe.

    Gods in our culture right now, are very much invented. There are enough anthropological, historical and psychological results to back that claim up.
  • Christoffer
    486
    the actual history of science is a very long line of succeeding theories - each proving the last one false, incomplete or seriously flawed.Rank Amateur

    Only theories that didn't face proper verification and falsification (even before the term was invented) were able to be considered false. Generally, scientific theories do not really end up considered "false". A theory is a proven fact about something, even if the theory appears false by new evidence, the theory has still been proven and observations are true. When new theories come up, they are applied in synthesis with other theories.

    Here's a good video on the matter:
  • Christoffer
    486
    The explanandum of a cosmological argument is not the sum of the physical features of the first cause.SophistiCat

    At this point I recommend that you actually take a closer look at these arguments, because I get an impression that you have a very vague idea of what they are saying.SophistiCat

    The explanandum of the argument just refers to the first cause...

    I don't know which examples of cosmological arguments you have in mind, but the ones I am familiar with mainly trade on the one feature of the first cause that cannot be denied (short of denying the existence of the first cause): it's being first, uncaused cause. This is what's supposed to make it metaphysically special, elevating it above any natural cause that we know or can hypothesize. Everything else that is said about that first cause more-or-less flows from that.SophistiCat

    ...and the explanans of those arguments aren't deductive or even inductive, they are merely wishful thinking by those using the argument to prove the existence of God.

    The first cause cannot be addressed as God by the common definitions of God. It can only be what it is by the argument. It is also impossible to conclude that it will never be observed or explained within a scientific theory, that is an assumption about science that requires future knowledge of what science can and cannot explain.

    Defining science by our understanding of science today is limiting when predicting possibilities of what science can explain and do in the future. This is what my argument is about, that if we try and view the progress of scientific understanding in a logical way, there is a logical possibility of the progress reaching a form of a singularity of understanding.

    But such a resolution could hardly be expected from science. Science tells us what is (the brute fact), not what must be. Only logic or metaphysics can claim to do the latter.SophistiCat

    That is actually not true (you can also see the video above). A scientific theory has predictions to be tested and verified. Those predictions predict what must be. When Einstein did his general relativity theory, it predicted bending light around the gravity of the sun. The theory predicted it because the theory is a scientific theory, not "just a theory" to reference the video.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_May_29,_1919
  • TheMadFool
    3.1k
    Essentially becoming a cosmological irony, in which we used science to prove that god doesn't exist and explain everything about our universe, but becoming such agents of the universe that we would by any standard measurements be considered gods ourselves.Christoffer

    Interesting. God is in the future. However, the only attribute that seems achievable is omniscience and, thereof, omnipotence.

    What about ommibenevolence? Will omniscience lead to ommibenevolence? Knowledge does seem to make us better people. Many tough moral problems would dissolve into crystal clarity and we could achieve it it seems.

    So, yes, I agree, God is in the future!
  • Christoffer
    486
    However, the only attribute that seems achievable is omniscience and, thereof, omnipotence.TheMadFool

    Of course, I think that we become more "godlike" than by defining ourselves as Gods by the normal definition we use for "God". We also become a pantheon if we are a civilization, but we might also merge every mind into a collective, so it might be a singularity of knowledge that is hard to comprehend by us today.

    What about ommibenevolence? Will omniscience lead to ommibenevolence? Knowledge does seem to make us better people. Many tough moral problems would dissolve into crystal clarity and we could achieve it it seems.TheMadFool

    Which is an interesting sub-question. If knowing all makes us understand all the consequences of every action, how can we ever make a choice that is bad? And if all make choices based on knowing everything, everyone would know if someone makes a choice that is bad and can, therefore, correct it.

    I think the movie Interstellar makes a good example of my argument.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    Only theories that didn't face proper verification and falsification (even before the term was invented) were able to be considered false. Generally, scientific theories do not really end up considered "false". A theory is a proven fact about something, even if the theory appears false by new evidence, the theory has still been proven and observations are true. When new theories come up, they are applied in synthesis with other theoriesChristoffer

    think you are missing the point. Not making a disparaging statement about science. Just making the point that much of what any particular generation believes to be a scientific truth, is often shown to be false or incomplete by future generations. Newton gives way to Eisenstein who gives way to Planck who will give way to somebody else at some point.
  • Christoffer
    486
    think you are missing the point. Not making a disparaging statement about science. Just making the point that much of what any particular generation believes to be a scientific truth, is often shown to be false or incomplete by future generations. Newton gives way to Eisenstein who gives way to Planck who will give way to somebody else at some point.Rank Amateur

    But neither of them disproves previous scientific truths as being false, this is a misunderstanding of what a scientific theory is compared to a "normal" theory. They might be incomplete, but they build on top of them without changing the facts established. You cannot prove Einstein wrong, you can only add to the theory.

    If you prove a scientific theory wrong, it would mean that you falsified it and that happens way before it gets to be called a scientific theory. A scientific theory is the highest form within science, it means it's proved and predicts the behavior of future tests.

    String theory, for example, is badly named theory, when it's rather a hypothesis. Higgs boson and Higgs field were also hypotheses which became a scientific theory after LHC verified the particle. You cannot disprove the particle and behavior of a Higgs particle, because it's established fact that it exists and behaves as it does. You can only provide further theories that prove these particles into a new theory which does not erase the existence of the particle or its behavior. The scientific process through this also focuses other fields, so now that the Higgs properties of quantum physics is proved, it means that scientists need to include Higgs in current hypotheses like with the work of a possible unification theory.

    Scientific theories have never been proven false or changed because of new theories. Hypotheses do, because those are educated guesses based on established facts but has no truth in them until proven. If you disprove a scientific theory it means a serious screw up by the scientific community on all levels through peer reviews to verification, falsifications and duplication tests.

    Sure, there might be some theories from before Russel's falsification times that was named scientific theories but didn't really go through the correct procedures, but most done from the enlightenment period and forward has been very strictly tested out and named according to the terminology.

    This is why I think there is so much confusion on this forum because people treat scientific theories as "just theories" which they are never in the scientific world.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    I know the technical definition of scientific theory - and some/many of them in the past were, in fact, wrong. Think Copernican heliocentrism for example.
  • Christoffer
    486


    Which was one of my points...

    there might be some theories from before Russel's falsification times that was named scientific theories but didn't really go through the correct procedures, but most done from the enlightenment period and forward has been very strictly tested out and named according to the terminology.Christoffer

    Copernican heliocentrism was published in 1543. Since we now have a system that strictly governs scientific work, the methodology cannot break scientific theories.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    Copernican heliocentrism was published in 1543. Since we now have a system that strictly governs scientific work, the methodology cannot break scientific theories.Christoffer

    ok - how about Quantum entanglement which is in direct conflict with GR. Quantum entanglement is real, has been predicted, and experimentally verified. Quantum entanglement is in direct conflict with GR. When it comes to Quantum entanglement - GR is wrong.
  • Christoffer
    486
    ok - how about Quantum entanglement which is in direct conflict with GR. Quantum entanglement is real, has been predicted, and experimentally verified. Quantum entanglement is in direct conflict with GR. When it comes to Quantum entanglement - GR is wrong.Rank Amateur

    Both are real, it's why they are trying to reach a unification theory, not a replacement theory.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    Both are real, it's why they are trying to reach a unification theory, not a replacement theory.Christoffer

    no GA says entanglement can not happen, and it does, GA is wrong on this issue.

    but no worries carry on
  • Christoffer
    486
    no GA says entanglement can not happen, and it does, GA is wrong on this issue.

    but no worries carry on
    Rank Amateur

    If you knew why they don't work together you would have already created a unification theory. Both have been proven to work, it's bridging between them into an over-arching theory that hasn't been solved. I suggest you read more about them. That one of them says the other is wrong is the problem, not the nature of the physics.
  • Rank Amateur
    1.6k
    If you knew why they don't work together you would have already created a unification theory. Both have been proven to work, it's bridging between them into an over-arching theory that hasn't been solved. I suggest you read more about them. That one of them says the other is wrong is the problem, not the nature of the physics.Christoffer

    you are 100 pct right, and I am 100% wrong - have no clue at all what i am talking about -

    carry on and enjoy
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