The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

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Atla
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by Atla »

VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 8:39 pm This from an interaction with GPT, yesterday.
There are a lot of alternative stories that don't need a "first cause", for example a few:

- The universe began with the Big Bang and spacetime began with it. So asking what caused it or what was before it is like asking what is north of the North pole. It makes no sense.
- The universe began with the Big Bang, but before it there was an endless cycle of preceding universes (cyclic cosmology, eternal return).
- The universe began with the Big Bang when two higher dimensional branes or whatever collided.
- The known universe comes from the Big Bang, but we simply can't see past the singularity. Maybe there was stuff before it, maybe there wasn't, maybe it was caused, maybe it wasn't.
- The universe simply began without a "first cause".
- The known universe coming from the Big Bang is not the entire universe. The entire universe may be much larger and there may have been multiple Big Bangs.
- There was no Big Bang, the universe has been here forever.

And all the above stories, including "first cause", are based on linear time which I disagree with because it's inherently illogical imo.

As for being "mindful", I've seen no signs so far that the universe would have been intentionally created by a being natural or supernatural.
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by VVilliam »

Atla wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 9:48 pm There are a lot of alternative stories that don't need a "first cause", for example a few:

- The universe began with the Big Bang and spacetime began with it. So asking what caused it or what was before it is like asking what is north of the North pole. It makes no sense.
I tend to agree with this assessment. The more obvious answer is that the universe is a self contained thing which has always existed (in one form or another perhaps) but the singularity in and of itself is not a "first cause" in any other way except as a "starting point" to "a form" - the current one, being the one we are experiencing. (it matters not if it once was another form or will one day become another form).
- The universe began with the Big Bang, but before it there was an endless cycle of preceding universes (cyclic cosmology, eternal return).
Yes. "One form or another" - but we are involved with nutting out our current situation in the current form the universe presents as.
- The universe began with the Big Bang when two higher dimensional branes or whatever collided.
That sounds like supernaturalism - and is unnecessary in explaining how our universe (in current form) came to be.
- The known universe comes from the Big Bang, but we simply can't see past the singularity. Maybe there was stuff before it, maybe there wasn't, maybe it was caused, maybe it wasn't.
All of which comes under the heading of "philosophy" (cosmology) and in that we can define what can be accepted as necessary re "maybe" and what is unnecessary.
Re the thread question - "supernaturalism" appears to be an unnecessary addition - iow - not a suitable candidate as a "maybe".
- The universe simply began without a "first cause".
Something cannot "begin" without a cause. However, if the singularity is mindful, then what comes from that, can be regarded as "cause enough".
- The known universe coming from the Big Bang is not the entire universe. The entire universe may be much larger and there may have been multiple Big Bangs.
Even so, it is all "One Thing" and natural enough for that.
- There was no Big Bang, the universe has been here forever.
According to a well known astrophysicist, science has shown that a "Big Bang" did occur and that is something which cannot be denied.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSgvoKJoDcE
(The Big Bang Dilemma with Neil deGrasse Tyson)
And all the above stories, including "first cause", are based on linear time which I disagree with because it's inherently illogical imo.
Please elaborate re your opinion on this, and explain how it might change the argument.
As for being "mindful", I've seen no signs so far that the universe would have been intentionally created by a being natural or supernatural.
Unless "maybe" the singularity was mindful and thus purposeful (intentional) re creating this particular universe we are investigating.
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Sculptor
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - ITs natural Quintessential Frequency

Post by Sculptor »

VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 6:40 pm
The universe is the reason why consciousness exists. To assume it is simply an accident of a mindless thing, is a rubbish philosophy.
Okay.
Let's drill down on this little beauty.

Go ahead and justify this statement and tell me how it happened.
Skepdick
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - ITs natural Quintessential Frequency

Post by Skepdick »

VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 8:05 pm Can you explain "mindfulness" in terms of; or attribute it to the laws of nature?
(I can and I have)
Really? Where is your scientific theory for mindfulness?

Which laws of nature have you explained mindfulness in terms of?
What predictions are you making?
What measurements are you taking?
VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 8:05 pm Thus, you defer to the superstition of supernaturalism.
I am not defering to anything.

1. I am observing that you lied (you said you have explained mindfulness in terms of natural laws)
2. I am observing that "mindfulness" remains unexplained in term of natural laws.
3. Given the Oxford English meaning of "supernatural" it is true that mindfulness is supernatural.

Mindfulness exists.
Mindfulness is supernatural.
Where is the superstition?
Atla
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by Atla »

VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:45 pm Something cannot "begin" without a cause.
True, according to everything we know. But this possibility still can't be 100% dismissed.
Please elaborate re your opinion on this, and explain how it might change the argument.
As far as I can tell, circular time is the only completely logical story. It's very simple but at the same time mind-bendingly counterintuitive, very difficult to see first.
There is a point in time where our future and past meet. (One possible story is that the Big Bang in our past and the Big Crunch in our future are one and the same point in time. This isn't eternal return.) All change is an illusion. The chain of causality is an unchanging circle. There is no beginning and end and there is no Kalam argument.
Unless "maybe" the singularity was mindful and thus purposeful (intentional) re creating this particular universe we are investigating.
I've seen no signs of that either. I don't see how the Big Bang singularity would be some kind of mind.
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - ITs natural Quintessential Frequency

Post by VVilliam »

Sculptor wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:13 am
VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 6:40 pm
The universe is the reason why consciousness exists. To assume it is simply an accident of a mindless thing, is a rubbish philosophy.
Okay.
Let's drill down on this little beauty.

Go ahead and justify this statement and tell me how it happened.
I already have explained.

Consciousness has always existed as an integral aspect of the universe.
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by VVilliam »

Unless "maybe" the singularity was mindful and thus purposeful (intentional) re creating this particular universe we are invstigating
I've seen no signs of that either.
What signs would you expect to see?
I don't see how the Big Bang singularity would be some kind of mind.
Why would you exclude from the properties of the singularity, the aspect of mindfulness?
Atla
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by Atla »

VVilliam wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 5:51 pm What signs would you expect to see?
Umm the known universe would need to show signs that it was intentionally created. Like looking somewhat artificial, unnatural, having a purpose, so on. Would also help if our creator would introduce itself to us.
Why would you exclude from the properties of the singularity, the aspect of mindfulness?
I don't, but it's thought to be just a blob of high density, high temperature, fairly structureless and homogeneous thing. Doesn't look like a mind with near-omnipotent powers.
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by seeds »

VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:45 pm
Atla wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 9:48 pm There are a lot of alternative stories that don't need a "first cause", for example a few:

- The universe began with the Big Bang and spacetime began with it. So asking what caused it or what was before it is like asking what is north of the North pole. It makes no sense.
I tend to agree with this assessment.
Well, you shouldn't, because it's a bad analogy.

When you view the earth from this perspective,...

Image

...then what exists north of the north pole are innumerable stars and galaxies.
north
adverb
  • 1. to or toward the north
    2. (north of) above
_______
Atla
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by Atla »

seeds wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 7:49 pm
VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:45 pm
Atla wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 9:48 pm There are a lot of alternative stories that don't need a "first cause", for example a few:

- The universe began with the Big Bang and spacetime began with it. So asking what caused it or what was before it is like asking what is north of the North pole. It makes no sense.
I tend to agree with this assessment.
Well, you shouldn't, because it's a bad analogy.

When you view the earth from this perspective,...

Image

...then what exists north of the north pole are innumerable stars and galaxies.
north
adverb
  • 1. to or toward the north
    2. (north of) above
_______
North of the North pole on the Earth's surface. It's a 2D analogy.
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Sculptor
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - ITs natural Quintessential Frequency

Post by Sculptor »

VVilliam wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 5:39 pm
Sculptor wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:13 am
VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 6:40 pm
The universe is the reason why consciousness exists. To assume it is simply an accident of a mindless thing, is a rubbish philosophy.
Okay.
Let's drill down on this little beauty.

Go ahead and justify this statement and tell me how it happened.
I already have explained.

Consciousness has always existed as an integral aspect of the universe.
How did that happen?
Why did it take so long to materialise?
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by VVilliam »

Atla wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 6:01 pm
VVilliam wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 5:51 pm What signs would you expect to see?
1.Umm the known universe would need to show signs that it was intentionally created. Like looking somewhat artificial, unnatural, having a purpose, so on. 1.1 Would also help if our creator would introduce itself to us.
Why would you exclude from the properties of the singularity, the aspect of mindfulness?
2.I don't, but it's thought to be just a blob of high density, high temperature, fairly structureless and homogeneous thing. Doesn't look like a mind with near-omnipotent powers.
Re 1. We only have the one Universe so cannot compare such things or assume that somehow it should look artificial.
Also the premise is that it was created therefore implying a creative purposeful mind.
The question re that is whether such a mind is necessarily Supernatural.

Re 1.1 in what way would you suggest that the overall creator mind should introduce itself to the individual mind?

Re 2. Please describe for us what such a mind would look like?
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - ITs natural Quintessential Frequency

Post by VVilliam »

Sculptor wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 9:45 pm
VVilliam wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 5:39 pm
Sculptor wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 12:13 am

Okay.
Let's drill down on this little beauty.

Go ahead and justify this statement and tell me how it happened.
I already have explained.

Consciousness has always existed as an integral aspect of the universe.
1. How did that happen?
2.Why did it take so long to materialise?
Re 1. How it happened is intricately integrated with how the universe happened.

Re 2. Materialize into what exactly?
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VVilliam
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by VVilliam »

seeds wrote: Tue Nov 28, 2023 7:49 pm
VVilliam wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:45 pm
Atla wrote: Mon Nov 27, 2023 9:48 pm There are a lot of alternative stories that don't need a "first cause", for example a few:

- The universe began with the Big Bang and spacetime began with it. So asking what caused it or what was before it is like asking what is north of the North pole. It makes no sense.
I tend to agree with this assessment.
Well, you shouldn't, because it's a bad analogy.

When you view the earth from this perspective,...

Image

...then what exists north of the north pole are innumerable stars and galaxies.
north
adverb
  • 1. to or toward the north
    2. (north of) above
_______
I think that observing the universe with the belief that there is such a thing as up or down is the reason why you think it is a bad analogy which shouldn't be agreed to.

In truth there is only in and out as far as directions go.

There really is no such thing as above or below.
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bahman
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Re: The Kalam Cosmological Argument - William Lane Craig

Post by bahman »

VVilliam wrote: Thu Nov 23, 2023 2:17 am
Finally, Ghazali argued that this Uncaused First Cause must also be a personal being. It’s the only way to explain how an eternal cause can produce an effect with a beginning like the universe.

Here’s the problem: If a cause is sufficient to produce its effect, then if the cause is there, the effect must be there, too. For example, the cause of water’s freezing is the temperature’s being below 0 degrees Celsius. If the temperature has been below 0 degrees from eternity, then any water around would be frozen from eternity. It would be impossible for the water to begin to freeze just a finite time ago. Now the cause of the universe is permanently there, since it is timeless. So why isn’t the universe permanently there as well? Why did the universe come into being only 14 billion years ago? Why isn’t it as permanent as its cause?

Ghazali maintained that the answer to this problem is that the First Cause must be a personal being endowed with freedom of the will. His creating the universe is a free act which is independent of any prior determining conditions. So his act of creating can be something spontaneous and new. Freedom of the will enables one to get an effect with a beginning from a permanent, timeless cause. Thus, we are brought not merely to a transcendent cause of the universe but to its Personal Creator.

This is admittedly hard for us to imagine. But one way to think about it is to envision God existing alone without the universe as changeless and timeless. His free act of creation is a temporal event simultaneous with the universe’s coming into being. Therefore, God enters into time when He creates the universe. God is thus timeless without the universe and in time with the universe.

Ghazali’s cosmological argument thus gives us powerful grounds for believing in the existence of a beginningless, uncaused, timeless, spaceless, changeless, immaterial, enormously powerful, Personal Creator of the universe.
Ghazali formulates his argument very simply: “Every being which begins has a cause for its beginning; now the world is a being which begins; therefore, it possesses a cause for its beginning.” [1]

Ghazali’s reasoning involves three simple steps:

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause of its beginning.

2. The universe began to exist.

3. Therefore, the universe has a cause of its beginning.


Q: Does this cosmology require a supernatural/unnatural/non-physical cause?

(If so/if not, why so/not?)
Well, there are two scenarios when it comes to the beginning of the universe: 1) The universe existed at the beginning of time and 2) The universe started to exist at the beginning of time. I will discuss (2) first and then return to (1).

To discuss this further I have to make a distinction between two options namely, time is an element of the universe, and time is not an element of the universe. I can show the first case leads to a regress so it is not acceptable. How does it lead to regress? Well, we have to note that time is needed for any change. It then follows that time is needed for time to begin whether there is a creator or not. This obviously leads to regress. The regress is not acceptable. Therefore, the universe cannot begin to exist. The universe exists. Therefore, time is not an element of the universe. This leaves us with the second option which is, time is not an element of the universe. Time however in this picture has to have a beginning otherwise we are dealing with eternal time which is logically unacceptable. This is against the first premise of the Kalam argument. The stuff that exists then either brought to existence by the act of creation or existed since the beginning of time. The second case is nothing but (1). I personally don't have any argument against these two cases. Therefore, God cannot be proved or disproved.
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