## A fun puzzle for the forums: The probability of God

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Those kinds of questions are more meaningful than mathematics and formal logic.
Yes. My Enformationism thesis was intended to provide a reasonable foundation from which to deal with such real-world questions as you mentioned. Unfortunately, it requires people to flip-the-script, and think of the world both Logically & Emotionally, both Scientifically & Philosophically, both Idealistically & Realistically, both Holistically & Reductively. That's why I call it the Bothand Principle.

BothAnd Principle : http://blog-glossary.enformationism.info/page10.html
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Very nice follow up BrianW. I wondered if someone would consider multiple first causes! Fantastic!
The logic of a first cause entails that there is no rule on how that first cause has to exist.
— Philosophim

This statement is the query and its own answer.

This is an axiom. All good arguments must start with an axiomatic foundation if we are to take them seriously. It is from this axiom, that I introduce limits and what must occur from those limitations.

We have our universe, and within the chain of causation, the entire set of this universe must have a first cause.

To your point on multiple first causes, isn't it cool?! Think on it for a few minutes and a whole slew of possibilities show up. If it is the case that a first cause has no reason for its existence, then what is to prevent a first cause from showing up at any time? It doesn't have to be grandiose like a God, it could be something as small as a quark, or some basic particle. But you are correct. Without some type of limitation on the argument, it devolves into infinite possibilities. So let me limit it.

It is not that there could not be further first causes in a universe after its "inception". We are looking at our specific universe as it is. And we are looking at the beginning of it all. The "why" to the set of everything that it is in this universe. That first cause to it all, is the study of the argument.

There is one chance that the first cause was something like the big bang. Any deviation after that would be a different universe. But then we can imagine a being that had the power to create our universe. If there is a minimum ability to create our universe, from the big bang identically down beyond, then it is also possible a being could form that had a slightly greater ability to create the universe, and created our exact universe.

Since there is an infinite to one ratio on Gods to no Gods being the first cause of our universe, I conclude the probability of the first cause of the universe being infinite to one.

You say it becomes an endless loop, but how? I've placed limitations, and come up with a restriction that stops any endless loop. And yet I admit it is still flawed. I have a feeling you might get it.
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Thank you Gnomon, a nice read and contribution. What you are doing is looking at the world today, and building back to its origin. Which honestly, is the only way to reasonably discover what that origin was.

My argument is looking at the possibilities of origin itself, with an attempt to see if there was anything we could logically conclude from it. Yes, the being you describe is one possibllity that could be. I do note that the only way the argument can work on probability is if "We do not know the first cause". But naturally if we worked our way up the chain of causality, we would start to eliminate possibilities as actuals enter into play.

I do admit though, that the conclusions of the argument minus the flaw do lead to a few consequences. One such consequence is that it may very well be impossible to prove a first cause. Since a first cause is not bound by anything but its own existence, we would not know if it was a first cause, or we were simply lacking the information of its prior causality.

But to your assessment, that may be unimportant. The second point the argument does conclude is we have to be very careful in claiming what "necessarily" must have been a first cause. I think the argument actually proves it is impossible to prove any first cause as necessary. But again, I think that is unimportant for your general point.

Yourself and Amen are more interested in they relationship and personal aspect of a God. This enriches your life and adds strength and purpose. A mathmatical God is not necessarily inspiring, or going to improve your life. A wise poster on here once linked me information on Budhism. Budha shunned such questions as, "Why are we here, what formed us, etc.", and noted that such questions are born from another need within human beings such as purpose, freedom from suffering, and peace. He felt that those were the things that should be solved first. If someone had solved those, then still desired to ask the cosmological and ontological questions, then he would oblige. But often time once the true need was solved, people's interests in those questions disappeared.

I thought this very wise.
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Yep, it also speaks to the concept of a Dipolar God (via physicist Paul Davies/The Mind of God).

Cognitively though, it's definately worth mentioning the dangers of dichotomizing truth's versus the benefits of integrating them, which of course, is generally a heathier view. And I think you did that a little bit in your blog about subjective/objective truth.

That's kind of what Kant did. He looked at inductive/deductive reasoning and uncovered/discovered that there was even more possibilities in the form of human intuition, which manifested itself through synthetic propositions.

Nice!
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Yourself and Amen are more interested in they relationship and personal aspect of a God.
I can't speak for 3017Amen, but I have no need for a personal relationship with God or G*D. My thesis is not a religious tract, but a search for a more complete scientific & philosophical understanding of how the world works. As I said, I don't imagine G*D as a person, in any relatable sense. Instead I refer to the Causal Principle of our world's creation as more analogous to Gravity : it's not a thing, but a property of things, that causes changes in space-time. G*D or First Cause or Logos or BEING is the only "thing" that we can say "simply is". Everything in our world traces back to the Power to Be : the ability to make something-from-nothing. And by "nothing" I mean un-actualized Potential.

The only personal property of G*D is what I call "Intention" --- and others have called "Will" --- the cause of a specific direction to creation and evolution --- as opposed to random chaos. For example, in our world, Time doesn't go around in circles, but in a straight line from Past to Future : from Cause to Effect. I have no idea if G*D is conscious in the same sense that humans are conscious. But, since Consciousness is a property of our world, it must have been a Potential in the Source of our world. My blog --- an extension of the thesis --- has nothing to say about our relationship to a transcendent personal G*D. But it has a lot to say about developing a rapport with the real world, and real people.

So apparently, you still don't Grok what I'm saying about the God Question. Admittedly, it's an unorthodox concept, but I am not alone in seeing Information (EnFormAction) as the essence of Reality. :cool:
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Yep, it also speaks to the concept of a Dipolar God (via physicist Paul Davies/The Mind of God).
Yes. I understand what Davies was talking about : that whatever G*D is, it must be responsible for both Good and Evil. Our real world of many parts is undeniable Di-polar. But I prefer to think of transcendent Deity as unitary : a singular whole, rather than an array of particular values from Good at one pole and Evil at the other. It's us humans trying to make sense of our imperfect world that have analyzed it into Black vs White terms of Good vs Evil. But I doubt that our world was created from a heavenly war between a Good God and an Evil God : Ahura Mazda vs Ahriman, or Jehovah vs Satan. Instead, the world was created with the potential (the freedom) for positive (good) and negative (bad) developments.

So, our human choices are what, collectively, set the erratic direction that the world takes. For example, in the Garden of Eden, there was no Good or Evil : it was just a perfect world for its creatures : the vegetarian Lions lay down with the innocent Lambs. Only when the Power of Reason was unleashed upon that idyllic realm did contrast & conflict become an obstacle to human flourishing. Good & Evil are human values, not G*D qualities.

However, my "un-tethered" imaginings of the Pre-Big-Bang state of things can be summed-up as Infinite Possibility (Potential). In Platonic terms, there was nothing Real until Ideality was Actualized : Logos, the principle of Reason, cut-off a piece of Infinity to create a finite world (Cosmos) from infinite possibilities (Chaos). And one unavoidable result of that division of the whole (Random Chaos contains all possible states from 0 to 100, from Bad to Good, but nothing Actual) is imperfection. So, when our world was "born", we inherited some of those parental possibilities, but not the full range --- in which Positives and Negatives cancel-out to neutral. . . . . Does any of that little myth make sense?

Cosmos from Chaos : Plato & Aristotle argued their theories from the assumption of Logos as the creator of Cosmos from Chaos.
http://bothandblog2.enformationism.info/page35.html
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Yes. I understand what Davies was talking about : that whatever G*D is, it must be responsible for both Good and Evil

Gnomon!

Oh I see. Actually I'm not familiar with his views on Good and Evil. Where could I find that?

What I was actually referring to, was his views concerning cosmology. The concept of a dipolar God combines necessity and contingency chance and choice. A traditional unchanging Being who is part of time (temporal time) but also timeless and eternal.

Quantum uncertainty and Wheeler's cloud are the analogies he uses. These ideas challenge the old school God omni-x3-stuff ( I don't accept Anselm's theory the Church adopted/forces on Christianity ) in favor of Process Philosophy/Theology.
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I don't quite agree with this. What I'm trying to ascertain is what is logically possible, and impossible when thinking about two separate ideas. Finite, or infinite regress of causal events. The conclusion is that any time of causality will, by necessity, resolve to a finite causality.

Now perhaps logic doesn't apply to causality, could be. But we can't argue anything at that point. Assuming that logic can be applied to causality, this is the only logical conclusion which can be made. Now if I'm wrong on that, feel free to point out the error in the logic.

The problem is less with your logic (I pointed out some problems with your reasoning in my previous post) and more with the whole "powerlevel" thing. The latter is a misuse of statistical analysis. You're inventing cases (infinite gods) and are then applying statistical analysis to the cases as if they were actual data. This kind of analysis does generally result in random results.

For example, imagine we have the following self-sorting problem:
"You wake up in a Hotel room with no memory. All the windows and the door are closed. What's the chance that you are in a hotel room with a number from 1 to 10?"

In order to give an even marginally useful answer, you need some empirical groundwork. You'd need to know, for example, what the average number of rooms in a hotel currently is. WIthout such groundwork, you can come to any arbitrary conclusion. Maybe there are infinite rooms? See the "doomsday argument" for a slightly more involved argument with the same problems.

Close, VERY close. But can you put this in similar terms of the argument? Because in the argument I demonstrate there is 1 specific universe, and any alteration after that first cause would be a different specific universe.

So for example, imagine that the first cause of our universe is the big bang, no God. There are an infinite number of Gods that could have been a first cause that then created the big bang, and created a duplicate universe.

Now imagine that there is another possible universe with a slightly different big bang as a first cause, and your dominant hand is different. That is an entirely different specific universe. But for that specific universe, there would be an infinite number of possible Gods that could be the first cause, that created that big bang that lead to that universe.

Since we allow metaphysical first causes, which is to say the "first cause" starts causality, but is not itself part of causality, nothing is stopping us from imagining any number of other ways a specific universe comes to be.

For one, the idea that the physical universe can be completely described based on it's initial state is somewhat outdated, since it assumes a universe working according to classical mechanics, which we now know is not the case.

But apart from that if we take the big bang as the starting point of our specific universe, and assume that every alteration of the makeup of the big bang results in a different specific universe, that does not constrain the metaphysical antecedents of the big bang in any way. Just like a God does not need a specific makeup to create a specific universe, there is no reason to assume that other possible first causes do. We don't have any convenient words for this, as with God, but let's for example assume that some sort of Aether gives rise to a specific universe in some unkown, metaphysical way. There is no reason to assume that only one specific Aether can give rise to one specific universe. Rather, there might be infinite Aethers that all give rise to the same specific universe.

Because we know that's not an option. Causality is a necessary condition that results in a necessary outcome. A first cause is a condition that results in a necessary outcome, but the first cause does not have a prior necessary condition for its own outcome, its existence in this case.

Now if you can show that causality has not been proven to exist, feel free, but I'm taking the stance that causality is proven to exist.

I would point you to Hume, who has pretty convincingly argued that we don't actually have a way to prove causality exists.

I hope my definition of causality above also clears up any concerns you had about why and how.

Why means: This is seeking out a necessary precondition for this current existence, but we do not know how.
How means: This is the understood necessary precondition for this current existence, or the answer to the why.

So on point 3 when I state, "The logic of a first cause entails that there is no rule on how that first cause has to exist."
There is no understood necessary precondition for why a first cause has to exist.
This can easily be answered with a why question. Why is there no necessary precondition on a first cause existing? It is because there can be no how. If there was, then it would not be a first cause, but there would exist some necessary precondition for the first causes existence.

Thus when I state on point 5, "Why is is all of causality infinite?", I am asking, "Is there a necessary precondition that entails all of causality must be infinite?"

So with this definition fleshed out more, I do not believe there is any contradiction. If you see one though, feel free to point it out!

The problem, which remains not cleared up, is that you say in 2:
"We can represent this as answering the question, "Why did X happen?""

Then in 3 you argue there are 3 (and only 3) answers to that question.

Then in 5 you ask question 2 again, even though you have already concluded that the options in 3 are definitive answers. That's the contradiction.

For example, in looped causality, every question "why did X happen" has an answer. For every X there is a Y. Therefore, looped causality is a valid solution to the initial dichotomy.

What you do in 5. is to then treat causality as a whole as an X, and ask whether that X has a Y. That, however, is not logical, since you're now stepping outside of causality and into metaphysics. And you have not established the metaphysical rule that every X needs a Y, that is there is no reason to assume there is a causality in metaphysics. Indeed you acknowledge that there is no such causality when you say that the (metaphysical) first cause does not need a prior cause.
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I would point you to Hume, who has pretty convincingly argued that we don't actually have a way to prove causality exists.

I haven't studied enough of Hume to know the answer to this question, do you know what Hume said about logical necessity?

The reason I ask is that I wanted to interject an important distinction. While personally I'm not a big fan of logical necessity there is certainly analogous merits to it viz physics. For example, logical necessity is based on formal logic, which in essence, is mathematics. Mathematics describes (not explains the nature thereof) the universe fairly well, as we know.

Generally from there, philosophically, if we are back to Platonic realms of unchanging, eternal, ideas that are seemingly logically necessary, just like unchanging, eternal, mathematical truth's (axioms) and ideas, what are its implications (?).

And so I'm thinking that if someone posits a first cause because something exists (versus nothing exists), they could perhaps simply argue that it just is. I know it's old-school, but it's a source of much debate.

Again, there are a lot of problems with that, which likewise I mentioned to the OP previously. But until mathematic's can arrive at a complete theory of everything, it does hold some merit in and of itself.

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Oh I see. Actually I'm not familiar with his views on Good and Evil. Where could I find that?
I wasn't referring to any particular quotes from Davies on the topic of a Good/Evil deity. The comment was simply my take-away from reading several of his books. I'm not aware that he ever used the term "Di-polar", but my impression was that his god model would fit that definition. The specific concept probably originated in the Process Theism of Whitehead, Hartshorne, etc.

But I had never heard of that notion when I developed my own G*D model from the Enformationism thesis. Our universe can be characterized in terms of Good in some respects, and Evil in other perspectives. Yet, rather than characterizing the original Cause of the world as one or the other, I assume that, what I call the eternal principle of BEING (the power to Be, to Exist), must have the Potential for both Good & Evil, as viewed from the perspective of temporal humans. So, I would say that G*D or Logos is "beyond good & evil", as explained below. :smile:

Dipolar God : https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/process-theism/

Good/Evil G*D : If the creator is omnipotent and omniscient, then why is the creation so flawed? Why should the dichotomy of Good versus Evil “make sense”? Traditional arguments attempting to justify our Yin/Yang situation, have not been convincing to atheists, who find the existence of Evil to be evidence against the biblical portrayal of God. That’s why my PanEnDeist god-model is assumed to be “beyond good and evil”.
http://bothandblog5.enformationism.info/page22.html

Deistic Theodicy : Nevertheless, if G*D is omnipotential, and omnipresent in the real world, then s/he can be logically characterized as both Good and Evil. From the perspective of space-time reality, G*D’s providence is experienced as sometimes Good, and sometimes Evil. But from the vantage of Enfernity, deity encompasses all possible qualities from Best to Worst. The positives & negatives are in balance, and cancel-out. So the overall holistic quality of G*D is neutral, neither Good nor Evil, but BothAnd.
http://bothandblog2.enformationism.info/page28.html
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I don't know any of that. For me, whether there is one 'first cause'/'being' (God or other) or many of such wherefrom the universe(s) - (if such a limit actually exists) - has its origin, is of little consequence. The aspects of unity and equilibrium which we observe, are just that. Sure, we can tag all of that with names (God, Life, Energy, Vibration, Universe, Spirit, Consciousness, Nature, Laws of Nature, etc) but they don't become anything more than what they already are (even to us).

Can anything compare with the idea of infinite probability? It's like the ultimate cheat code.
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Fantastic Escharmon, you nailed it!

But apart from that if we take the big bang as the starting point of our specific universe, and assume that every alteration of the makeup of the big bang results in a different specific universe, that does not constrain the metaphysical antecedents of the big bang in any way. Just like a God does not need a specific makeup to create a specific universe, there is no reason to assume that other possible first causes do. We don't have any convenient words for this, as with God, but let's for example assume that some sort of Aether gives rise to a specific universe in some unkown, metaphysical way. There is no reason to assume that only one specific Aether can give rise to one specific universe. Rather, there might be infinite Aethers that all give rise to the same specific universe.

This is EXACTLY it. Nice job!

Yes, Hume can argue that we cannot determine if causality exists. But if does nothing against the argument because then everything is essentially a first cause.

If causality does not exist, then nothing has a necessary precondition for its being. If this is the case, then everything is essentially a "first cause". Which means that anything could happen at any time, and there are no laws which constrain anything. Meaning it is the same conclusion. It is possible a God could exist.

Hm, I'm still not in agreement over your "physics versus metaphysics" point.

What you do in 5. is to then treat causality as a whole as an X, and ask whether that X has a Y. That, however, is not logical, since you're now stepping outside of causality and into metaphysics.

First, if my intention came off that I was trying to assume the three conclusions were facts, my apologies. This was not the original paper, only a rewrite from memory for the forums. Back when I wrote this, this was the topic at the time in a class. There were three propositions of causality, so I decided to include them. If you can come up with more, feel free, that might invalidate the argument.

Second, I am not stepping out of causality. What I'm doing is saying, "Ok, lets assume that causality is an infinite regress. Is there an inherent contradition, flaw, or something we then must realize if we are to assume this is the answer?

X+2 =3. If I say it could be 1, 2, or 3 for x, I can plug it in, then see if it fits right? That's all I'm doing here. Basically I'm pointing out that the idea that everything that exists has a necessary precondition for its existence is impossible to conclude. The entire set of that existence, is still an existence. And there must be a necessary precondition for that sets existence. But, there isn't.

Of course, I might be wrong. Can you think of a situation in which there is a necessary precondition that everything has a prior necessary precondition for its existence? In the end, I can only think of one. "It simply is." Basically you can't claim that everything has a necessary precondition for its existence as there is no other necessary precondition for that entire set of existence (that is physics, not metaphysics) besides the fact that it is an infinitely looped condition of existence. But again, I'm always eager to see a nut like that cracked, maybe I'm missing something.
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For me, whether there is one 'first cause'/'being' (God or other) or many of such wherefrom the universe(s) - (if such a limit actually exists) - has its origin, is of little consequence. The aspects of unity and equilibrium which we observe, are just that. Sure, we can tag all of that with names (God, Life, Energy, Vibration, Universe, Spirit, Consciousness, Nature, Laws of Nature, etc) but they don't become anything more than what they already are (even to us).

An understandable way of looking at things. But if I decided to, and classified it as in the argument, does it work?

Can anything compare with the idea of infinite probability? It's like the ultimate cheat code.

Heh, yes. And that is the nature of my flaw. I only considered one aspect of infinity, and not any other. The flaw has been posted in post section 3 in detail, and Echarmion nailed it up above in this post section if you want to read it.
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An understandable way of looking at things. But if I decided to, and classified it as in the argument, does it work?

Yeah, everything just is. It allows for maximum focus upon oneself (the most significant point of anything that is).
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I'm admittedly not keeping up with the intricate logic trains being assembled here, so perhaps this is a useless question, but anyway...

Does this entire thread depend upon time having a sequential linear nature, as every day common sense experience typically suggests?
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Does this entire thread depend upon time having a sequential linear nature, as every day common sense experience typically suggests?

Yes. The core is about causality, and causality assumes sequential time. You can view causality as a "Prior necessary condition for the current state of a thing". Time would be the way we understand that prior causality.
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The core is about causality, and causality assumes sequential time

I'm hardly a physics major, but from documentaries I've watched it sounds like time may be a more complex phenomena than merely a sequence of events. Don't know myself, not sure anybody does.

The point here is that this seems another unproven, unexamined assumption which the thread is built upon. If we assume that X is true, and then build a complex logic chain on top of that assumption, and it turns out that X is not true, then the exercise becomes kind of pointless, doesn't it?

The best solution I see is a disclaimer something like the following...

This is just a card game, it has no bearing on reality. Here are the card games rules, let's play the game.

In that setting, it wouldn't matter if the logic card games rules are built upon unexamined faulty assumptions.
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I'm hardly a physics major, but from documentaries I've watched it sounds like time may be a more complex phenomena than merely a sequence of events. Don't know myself, not sure anybody does.
The concept of Time is indeed more complicated since Einstein muddied the waters with his Relativity theories (General & Special). But it's still not so complex & paradoxical that us non-geniuses can't wrap our minds around it --- to some extent.

Relativity says --- and this is my layman's interpretation --- that a> Subjective Time, from the human perspective, is linear and sequential; but b> Objective Time, from a perspective outside the space-time universe, is eternal and unchanging. Unfortunately, subjective Relativity means that the rate of change varies depending on the observer's motion. So our notion of time as a steady flow from Past to Future, is what Einstein called an "illusion". But then, all of our subjective perceptions are illusions, in the sense that they capture only a partial view of the whole system of Reality.

Causality is another subjective "illusion", in that we infer the Cause by imagining an invisible link from the immediate Precedent to the Effect. For all practical purposes that's a useful assumption. But philosophers are sometimes Idealists, and try to comprehend the bigger picture. For Einstein's philosophy of Time, the big picture is as seen from God's timeless Perspective. So, our notion of Causation is an inference, that assumes a god-like omniscience to provide the link between the presumed Cause and the observed Effect. Hume pointed-out the common "illusion" of a "necessary" connection between two sequential events.

Therefore, as Philosophim stated : "The core is about causality, and causality assumes sequential time." Only God or Einstein can see Time & Causation objectively, although Time Scientists are gradually narrowing the gap. For the purposes of this thread on the Probability of God, we are limited to seeing "in a glass darkly" through our subjective telescopes. So yes, no-one knows for sure, but we can speculate based on our "core" assumptions. :nerd:

Block Time : Eternalism
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eternalism_(philosophy_of_time)

Hume on Causation : Once we realize that “A must bring about B” is tantamount merely to “Due to their constant conjunction, we are psychologically certain that B will follow A”, then we are left with a very weak notion of necessity.
https://iep.utm.edu/hume-cau/
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Can anything compare with the idea of infinite probability? It's like the ultimate cheat code. — BrianW
Heh, yes. And that is the nature of my flaw. I only considered one aspect of infinity, and not any other.
That also may be the flaw in your flaw-finding. There are no other aspects (parts) of Infinity. By "definition" of the word, Infinity is immeasurable & unquantifiable & indivisible & unlimited & undefinable. Ironically, mathematicians, with nothing better to do, have determined that any concept or value of infinity is equal to another, hence no different aspects. There is only one undefined unitary boundless Infinity. Everything else is an analogy with finite measurable Time. Moreover, Infinity is Potential, not Probable. The notion of Probability only applies in a finite measurable system of constant change. So, re-defining Infinities to allow for alternative god-models, is a futile exercise in circular reasoning. Plug any value you want into the equation, and In-finity still equals un-defined.

Brian may think that any reference to Infinity is cheating, because it assumes something outside of our sequential cause & effect space-time. But, correct me if I'm wrong, we are talking about a super-natural or pre-Natural or pre-space-time First Cause here. So we either include Eternity & Infinity in our determinations, or we limit the cause of our existence to Olympian Gods or a turtles-all-the-way-down race of super-intelligent natural Aliens. :smile:

Infinity : a number greater than any assignable quantity or countable number (symbol ∞).

Multiple Infinities : two mathematicians have shown that two different variants of infinity are actually the same size.
https://www.quantamagazine.org/mathematicians-measure-infinities-find-theyre-equal-20170912/

Positive or Negative Infinity : it's just as meaningless as plus or minus Zero.

... It is always possible to think of a larger number: for the number of times a magnitude can be bisected is infinite. Hence the infinite is potential, never actual; the number of parts that can be taken always surpasses any assigned number.
___Aristotle. Physics 207b8
I might add that an Infinite G*D is Potential, not Actual.
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Cantor justifies my initial infinite to 1 probability. https://www.quantamagazine.org/mathematicians-measure-infinities-find-theyre-equal-20170912/

Basically its about ratios of infinite growth. You see, in the example we are taking one universe specifically, and comparing its ratio. There is an infinite ratio of Gods to a 1 universe without a God. Now if we consider it all together, yes, even though the ratio is larger per individual universe without a God, there are still infinite possibilities on both sides. So yes, they are the same size. But, once you draw one, then it is no longer an infinite size we are looking at, but the ratio of possibilities.
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This is just a card game, it has no bearing on reality. Here are the card games rules, let's play the game.

lol Hippy, you seem insistent to come back to this eh? No. I am not claiming this is simply a card game. While the end result has a flaw, I declare an axiom about first causes, and that there is no other possibility that the universe has at least one first cause.

Think about the logical proof by contradiction. Wait, you don't believe in logic. Are you going to start that thread? =P If you would like me to start a thread, I can. I'll post my theory of knowledge, which will show why logic is necessary if you would like. I don't want to steal your thunder though if you have your own idea you wanted to post.
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Yes. The core is about causality, and causality assumes sequential time.
Question: if temporal - sequential time - how long? I've used this before: used to be a person could buy dynamite if, e.g., he had maybe a tree-stump to get out of the ground. Assume it's done and the stump is out of the ground and either hauled away or burned on the spot. The dynamite did what it was intended that it should do. So what, exactly, caused it to explode?

One assumes you would like to know the exact causes of dynamite exploding: it would be too much to drive around with anything that just exploded arbitrarily, when it took a mind to.
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Wait, you don't believe in logic.

I never said that. Ok, I give up, this is hopeless. Good luck.
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Good post Gnomon,

For all practical purposes that's a useful assumption. But philosophers are sometimes Idealists, and try to comprehend the bigger picture.

Here's an example which may help to illustrate. It's a useful convention to say that the sun rises and sets, because from our limited perspective on the surface of the Earth, that's what it looks like. But from the bigger picture, the "rising and setting" concept is obviously entirely wrong.

Point being, a great deal of God topic discussion seems to make the mistake of assuming that we can map everyday human scale common sense assumptions on to a vastly larger scale, the scope of god claims.

The "does God exist" question seems a good example. In daily life a simplistic dualistic yes/no answer to the existence of something is reasonable and useful. Does a pencil exist on my desk, yes or no, simple, obvious and useful. But if we shift the focus to the sub-atomic scale we see the pencil is to an overwhelming degree mostly nothing. If we shift the focus to the cosmic scale, to space, the simplistic yes/no formulation falls apart entirely.

So if philosophers wish to comprehend the bigger picture, perhaps they should stop trying to map human scale concepts on to the very largest of scales, ie. scope of god claims.

For the purposes of this thread on the Probability of God, we are limited to seeing "in a glass darkly" through our subjective telescopes.

I don't see why we are so limited. I think instead it's a deliberate choice to be limited. I'm not arguing against that choice, just suggesting it would be more intellectually honest to state the choice clearly. That's what I was getting at with the card game example.

Members wish to display their talents for doing the logic dance game, and so they ignore anything which gets in the way of that. It's more exciting and glamorous to pretend this logic dancing game is relevant to all of reality, because by doing so the philosopher perceives themselves as being as big as reality itself. Ok, no problem, I get the emotional appeal and am not above it.

But if we wanted to do actual philosophy we might start from the premise that we actually have not the slightest clue how to calculate the probability of God, and probably haven't even formed a useful question, and then proceed from there.

If it's true that we have no idea at all what we're talking about, then what?
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Apparently, Cantor was thinking in terms of number lines, which for practical applications we can imagine as a whole, or in parts. So, the mathematicians are comparing sub-sets ("actual" infinities) of Ideal or Theoretical Infinity. But if those sub-sets can be comprehended as isolated entities, they are not truly infinite (incomprehensible). My G*D model is based on the concept of indivisible Theoretical Infinity. So, these other so-called infinities are actually finite, and their Olympian gods would also be only partially divine. And the ratio of Absolute Infinity to Finite Infinity is One to Zero :joke:

Vernacular Infinity : a really long distance
Theoretical Infinity : an un-measurable indivisible distance, without beginning or end
Absolute Infinity is the Set of all sets.
Absolute G*D is the Set of all sets.

Universal Set : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_set

In the number set image below, Absolute or Universal Infinity is the white space behind

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I don't see why we are so limited. I think instead it's a deliberate choice to be limited.
Actually, our partial-blindness to Reality may not be completely self-caused (deliberate self-obfuscation). Don Hoffman, in his book The Evolutionary Argument Against Reality, plausibly speculates that Evolution itself has selected for just enough perception of the world for its organisms to replicate. But humans, have evolved the rational ability to become aware of their own blind spots, and seek to fill-in the gaps. Unfortunately, we too often color-in those gaps with uninformed imagination, such as Weather Gods to explain tornadoes. :smile:

Against Reality : https://www.quantamagazine.org/the-evolutionary-argument-against-reality-20160421/
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So if philosophers wish to comprehend the bigger picture, perhaps they should stop trying to map human scale concepts on to the very largest of scales, ie. scope of god claims.
That's why I try to limit my G*D postulates to abstract metaphors, like Logos, rather than mapping physical human attributes onto a metaphysical inference from physical evidence. My god-model is like Infinity and Eternity, immeasurable and incomprehensible. I only use that amorphous model as an ideal axiomatic "core assumption" from which to interpret how and why the real comprehensible world works in ways that our limited intelligence can make sense of. :smile:

"The most incomprehensible fact about the universe is that it is comprehensible".___Einstein
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But humans, have the ability to become aware of their own blind spots, and seek to fill-in the gaps. Unfortunately, we too often color-in those gaps with uninformed imagination, such as Weather Gods to explain tornadoes.

Or by imagining that our reasoning powers are relevant to everything everywhere. Such imaginings seem a willful denial of easily proven facts like how incredibly small we are, and how incredibly stupid we are.

Evidence: Let us observe how members of this forum, and more to the point, professional philosophers too, are to an extreme extent so bored by the fact that we have thousands of hydrogen bombs aimed down our own throat that such a subject rarely receives even the briefest attention.

These are the geniuses who think they are clever enough to uncover some previously hidden fact about the most fundamental nature of everything everywhere (scope of god claims), a realm no one can define in even the most basic manner.

On subjects of such enormous scale, reason does not lead to ever more clever logic calculations. It leads to a collapse of the entire god debate game.
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These are the geniuses who think they are clever enough to uncover some previously hidden fact about the most fundamental nature of everything everywhere (scope of god claims), a realm no one can define in even the most basic manner.

Again Hippy, you didn't actually read the argument. Coming into my thread, refusing to read the argument, and lambasting everyone who dares to is kind of rude at this point don't you think? I've invited you to start your own separate thread. I've asked you to address the actual topic in your claims, and you haven't done either of those. I've been polite.

The only one playing genius is you. You're telling all of us that we're all full of it, without even entering the debate. You are telling us we should be covering topics you want, because this seems to be all about you doesn't it Hippy? Because you're not seeking to understand or communicate, you're seeking to PREACH. If you want to complain about philosophers, go start a thread complaining about philosophers. But you're off topic and being rude at this point.
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Again Hippy, you didn't actually read the argument

But somehow I magically know it is built upon unexamined unproven premises.

What's happening now is that you realize you don't know how to prevail on the logic, so you're trying to change the subject from the post to the poster, where you hope you'll have better luck. No offense taken, I accept your surrender, and you may keep your horse and sidearm.
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