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Why should I believe in a higher power?

Artgirl1999 replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 9:44 am

(b)Quantum:(b) Hey, I'm Artgirl/Topaz. I come on this forum every now and then, but I'm not a regular. Mostly because debating is not my strong suit. Nice to meet you. :)


I just read your last post, and while it does make some sense, think about this:




Imagine that this did happen, that one of the billions of universes coming into being was perfectly placed. What are the chances that everything else-people, animals, plants- would also be perfectly formed (if you're an evolutionist, which I'm assuming you are, due to the title if this thread)?



So say evolution is true. (No personal opinion from moi at the moment. :P) Now these cells, by chance, begin to mutate. And soon we have close to nine million species of plants, animals, etc.


(i)What are the chances?(i)




Well, I mentioned in another thread once (I think the thread was about evolution) a book I was reading. Here's part of my post: Anyway, the theory is based on chance mutations, correct? For instance, a bird could mutate to get a longer beak which makes it easier for the bird to eat, therefore the short-beaked birds will eventually die out. Okay, that makes sense. But what are the chances of the mutation actually happening?



My book said that it's about the same chances as winning the Powerball Lottery every day for two hundred years in a row.



And that's just the chances of (i)one animal(i) evolving/mutating ito sonething else. What are the chances of that happening 8.7 million times?





So, that's the evolution-side of it. Basically what came to mind when I read your last post. But as for the actual question which this thread is going to answer:



You should believe in a higher power because a higher power loves you. (I think Rebecca's post will explain this more clearly than I can.)



I hope you can understand what I'm saying because like you said, I'm not a very good debater. :P

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Artgirl1999 replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 9:46 am

Sorry about the random (i)s. I'm on my iPad and I was trying out some HTML code, but it didn't work. :(

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Breece6 replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 10:02 am

In regards to the improbability of our universe:
 
Well, if there was a universe where all those things weren't true, we wouldn't exist in it to know about it.  
 
Consider this: What if there's a type of life that would never survive in our universe, but in another one it exists.  Then we're the ones living in just another one of those random universes to them, and their universe is the one that is amazingly improbable.
 
It's all subjective :)  It seems like the way it is because for us to be here it couldn't be any other way.  That doesn't mean there's not life on some distant planet that would find earth an apalling place to live.  Maybe there's some planet we would never dream of being "just right", but it is to them.  It's subjective.

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Destinee replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 10:03 am

Artgirl: 
 
I believe you have to use [ ] the square brackets :)

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Artgirl1999 replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 10:51 am

Thanks, Destinee. I'll try that. :)

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 1:15 pm

Rebecca: First, I really appreciate your response, It was quite informative. Second, I'm a redhead too, so  cheers for us! Anyway, on the discussion...
 
So in regard to your first point I see how powerful religion is for many people. That since of purpose and community, at least in theory, is really great. In fact morally and socially, I tend to agree with these sorts of people. However, I haven't had the same experience with religion. That's probably a combination of my personality and my upbringing - my parents and the rest of my family firmly believe in God, however we've only gone to church a few times, as my parents feel that the whole institution of organized religion is largely hypocritical.  Basically, they feel that the big ideas are being pushed out of the way focusing on little "fundamentalist" ideals. I have to say from my experiences I agree with them. Also, the first time I went to Sunday school with a friend I heard the story of Abraham and Isaac and I was very unimpressed (if someone wants to explain that story to me please do so).
 
Outside of organized religion I just don't feel the same thrill in regard to God as I do to science. I know the two don't have to be at odds, but not "knowing" whether God exists involves a leap of faith I'm uncomfortable making in regards to understanding the world around us. I think I understand the excitement that comes with truly believing in God, however. I feel something very similar when I read about string theory or the Big Bang. 
 
So, how about life with/without  a higher power? First, I'll say yes I can imagine life without one - that's what I tend to believe, until I can find proof otherwise. Personally, I don't think that space, light, matter, etc. requires a creator. Definitely not intelligent design. Perhaps the universe (or multiverse) just is. Then again I can't rule out intelligent design either. That explaination just doesn't seem as good to me because I can't prove it one way or the other like scientific theories.
 
Can you see love? Do you know that its real? No, and yes.
 
Is it more than just chemicals in your brain? Perhaps, but I see no reason to believe otherwise, even if that's a little disconcerting - after all the laws of physics and the universe don't have to please us.
 
Why can't scientists still explain the design of the brain in all its complexity? Well. Why didn't we know that the world was round? Why didn't we understand that electricity and magnetism are one in the same? Scientists just haven't had enough time yet - in fact effective brain research has just begun relatively recently with the use of new technologies. No one can deny the brain and consciousness are very complicated and that it will take a long time to unravel its mysteries. Perhaps there is something beyond science here, but humans used to think the sun was something special - yet its just a star. The list goes on and on of things that were once miracles that can now be explained by science. Its not a proof, but based on the track record of science I feel fairly confident in assuming the brain will be the same way.
 
Who made science? Humans in order to understand the universe around us.
 
Why are there so many exceptions for it? It depends on the field for how many exceptions there are currently, but essentially wherever there are exceptions we know our current theories are lacking. Good scientific theories that have stood the test of time have no exceptions (that we are aware of).
 
All in all, however, I think it comes down to one thing. Religious ideas may be correct, but I can't prove them one way or the other. As long as I can come up with a scientific way to explain the same thing, I'll take that route, as I can prove or disprove those ideas - that gives me more confidence in accepting those views.
 
And this leads to Breece's post so....
 
Breece: So yes evolution is built on a table, but can you give good religious explanations for that evidence? I don't think so (saying the devil put out fossils to make us question our faith doesn't count)
 
I can however give possible scientific explainations for each of the "legs" to the theory of God. I can't elaborate right now because I have to go (this is a long post), but if you like I'll get into this more later.
 
Thanks everyone.

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm

Breece: In regards to your most recent post - exactly. I couldn't have said it better myself. That's what's called the anthropic principle.

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DynamoThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 1:50 pm

I'd be dropping a bombshell here, but the theory of evolution was proposed by the orthodox (as Dess disconcertingly calls him) Rumi in his Mathnawi way back in the 12th century. I'll try to paste it here. :P

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DynamoThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 1:52 pm

Quantum: You seem to share my sheer madness for science. I guess we'll meet again on the same not after approx. a month. :P

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 2:06 pm

Dynamo: So you've figured that out. I'll look forward to some good discussions.

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Breece6 replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Quantum:
 
DID YOU NOT READ THE DISCLAIMER
 
I wasn't ACTUALLY talking about evolution silly.  Re-read my post, my whole point was that I was using the structure of the theory of evolution as a comparison to the way I like to organize my argument for God's existence.
 
ALWAYS READ THE DISCLAIMERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
:P

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Breece: I read the disclaimer. I'm just arguing that (to continue the metaphor) that one is a much sturdier table than the other. Who is silly now? :)

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Jade.I.AmThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:16 pm

1 Peter 3:15 "...always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is within you..."

 

CHALLENGE ACCEPTED

 

*rolls up sleeves and takes earrings out*

 

round one--Cosmological

 

"Why is there something rather than nothing" argument --- don't hyperventilate, breece :P

 

Everything in this world can be explained by necessity--it has a reason for being there. There's a reason why frogs have webbed feet and there is a reason why polar bears have black skin.

 

Now--is there a reason for reasons to exist? Is there a reason for the Universe to be created in the first place? After the world was made, these "logical" laws came into being--but before? Logical universe implies a logical FORCE--a god. 

 

Everything that exists in the universe has a reason for existing--why not the universe itself?

Note: God is exempt from this logic (he is The Reason, the Beginning and the End)

 

Coffe cup argument: the existence of a coffee cup. 

 

The coffe cup was put together, made from materials collected by the people who made it. It's existence is dependent on the people who made it. They designed it. 

 

Almost everything we know of falls into this category--objects, animals, us. 

 

None of these things exist through their own power.

 

There is only one being not in this category--God, the necessary being. 

 

This means it is impossible for God not to exist. It is possible for the universe not to exist.

 

God would exist in any possible world--Universe--that is possible to be created--the one Truth. 

 

Now--there is a reason for God's existence. Just not an outside force that is the reason. As i said, God is His own category (the other was Contingent, or Dependent). 

 

Taxi Cab Fallacy--to say everything in the universe has a reason, but not the Universe itself. Somehow its enormous size exempts it from the logic previously followed. It's like jumping out of a "taxi" when convenient. Look up the glowing ball in the forest example :P

 

Heisenburg Fallacy/Indeterminacy Policy--Subatomic particles come in and out of being out of a vacuum, changing forms between energy and particle.... Refute: you may not be able to predict when or where a subatomic particle comes in and out of existence doesn't mean you can't explain it. The vacuum is not nothingness. It is not winking in and out of existence.

 

This is a metaphysical principle--everything that exists has an explanation, in and of itself or by an external cause.

 

 

I've barely even scratched the surface O.o feel free to comment on any part of this argument! :P

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Jade.I.AmThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:17 pm

 


1 Peter 3:15 "...always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is within you..."


 


CHALLENGE ACCEPTED


 


*rolls up sleeves and takes earrings out*


 


round one--Cosmological


 


"Why is there something rather than nothing" argument --- don't hyperventilate, breece :P


 


Everything in this world can be explained by necessity--it has a reason for being there. There's a reason why frogs have webbed feet and there is a reason why polar bears have black skin.


 


Now--is there a reason for reasons to exist? Is there a reason for the Universe to be created in the first place? After the world was made, these "logical" laws came into being--but before? Logical universe implies a logical FORCE--a god. 


 


Everything that exists in the universe has a reason for existing--why not the universe itself?


Note: God is exempt from this logic (he is The Reason, the Beginning and the End)


 


Coffe cup argument: the existence of a coffee cup. 


 


The coffe cup was put together, made from materials collected by the people who made it. It's existence is dependent on the people who made it. They designed it. 


 


Almost everything we know of falls into this category--objects, animals, us. 


 


None of these things exist through their own power.


 


There is only one being not in this category--God, the necessary being. 


 


This means it is impossible for God not to exist. It is possible for the universe not to exist.


 


God would exist in any possible world--Universe--that is possible to be created--the one Truth. 


 


Now--there is a reason for God's existence. Just not an outside force that is the reason. As i said, God is His own category (the other was Contingent, or Dependent). 


 


Taxi Cab Fallacy--to say everything in the universe has a reason, but not the Universe itself. Somehow its enormous size exempts it from the logic previously followed. It's like jumping out of a "taxi" when convenient. Look up the glowing ball in the forest example :P


 


Heisenburg Fallacy/Indeterminacy Policy--Subatomic particles come in and out of being out of a vacuum, changing forms between energy and particle.... Refute: you may not be able to predict when or where a subatomic particle comes in and out of existence doesn't mean you can't explain it. The vacuum is not nothingness. It is not winking in and out of existence. 


 


This is a metaphysical principle--everything that exists has an explanation, in and of itself or by an external cause.


 


Source: ht tp: //www.intellig entfaith3 15. com/p/good-argum ents-for-gods-existence. html (erase the spaces)


 


I've barely even scratched the surface O.o feel free to comment on any part of this argument! :P
 

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Jade.I.AmThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:17 pm

sorry, that got spaced weird O.o

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Jade.I.AmThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm

also, you might be interested in this video. It's very short :)
 
ht tp://www.yout ube. com/watch?v= 9D05ej8 u-gU

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 7:13 pm

Jade.I.Am: So I agree that there is a reason frogs have webbed feet - they evolved to suit their environment. I don't see how that applies to the universe and I don't see why the universe has to have a purpose. It might, but I highly doubt it. Humans crave reasons, but I think its just as likely that the universe just is and perhaps always has been. It doesn't need to be made. Just like logical rules don't need to be intelligently designed. We shouldn't limit our ideas to our own very limited experience where things like coffee cups must be designed. 
 
Also, by making God exempt from these rules you're just pushing back the "problem" a step further. If God can be outside the need of a reason why can't we just make things simpler and say the universe doens't need a reason.
 
You say "almost everything we know of falls into this category". But our anecdotal experiences and intuition regarding the way world works can be extremely flawed - after all we evolved to survive not to understand the universe. If you've taken a physics class you'll know the way the world works isn't at all like how you think things are from your ordinary existance.
 
Taxi-Cab fallacy - if you think this is a problem God has a problem too - once again you're just pushing the issue back a step and making things unneccesarily complicated. 
 
Heisenburg Unncertainty Principle: I agree with your statements, but I don't see how it applies...
 
Anyway that's my opinion. Throw me some more ideas.

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Imaginedangerous replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 8:00 pm

But in theory, it's also possible that the inifinite monkeys could take an infinitely long time to produce Shakespeare.
 
Obviously, it's possible that the universe, the earth, and the life on it were all produced completely, totally by chance. There's also a chance I will be crushed by a falling meteor within the next ten seconds.
 
(waits)
 
Oh. Good.
The thing is, when you start looking at probabilities instead of possibilities, things get a lot more interesting. Nothing in life can be proven with absolute certanity. Take a criminal case in court- your ex-girlfriend had keys to your apartment, her fingerprints were found all over the doorknob,she hates you, and all your stuff is missing. Is it possible that some alien being opened a wormhole, tranferred all of your belongings into her house, took copies of her fingerprints while she was asleep, and planted them in your apartment? Well, yeah, that's not impossible. It doesn't violate the laws of theoretical physics. But is it likely? No. The more plausible explanation is that your girlfriend broke into your place and stole your stuff, and that's an assumption you, the police, and the judge are pretty safe making.
 
It's possible the universe could have formed without God. But the odds of it happening by accident are so astronomical that we can barely even comprehand them. The improbability of our existance is not definite proof, but it strongly suggests the existance of a God. (It's one of the legs of Breece's table argument.)
 
 
 
 
(Sidenote to Breece: I understand what you're saying, about how it's all subjective and a life-sustaining universe is all we know, but... I don't actually see the point. Is that supposed to refute my improbability claim? How does the fact that we're inside a life-sustaining universe make a life-sustaining universe any more likely? I'm confused.)
 
 
Also, I might like to add that I think pure logic might be kind of the wrong approach to God. Sure, it's nice to have the rational basis for his existence, but the biggest reason God's presence is important to humankind is emotional. Giving your feelings a shot might not be such a bad appraoch.

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 8:58 pm

Imaginedangerous: And that, I think, is where we disagree - I find an all powerful being creating all this more unlikely, particularly if a multiverse exists in which case while individually the chance of the universe being around is really small, in the scheme of things it is practically guaranteed (the infinite monkey thing - those monkeys will write the works of shakesphere. And if you could wait for 10 seconds an infinite amount of times a meteorite would hit you)

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Quantum1.0This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Apr. 18, 2013 at 9:00 pm

Imaginedangerous: Oh yeah. I forgot to reply to your last comment. Anyway, good point. I agree God and religion is a pretty emotionally powerful thing. It's just, personally, I don't trust my emotions for understanding the way the universe works. Once again, I don't think the laws of physics have to appeal to us. It would be nice, but...

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