Does God exist if people don't?

Sounds like a stupid question, but it was raised in a book I am reading by Francis Ward, and it made me think. Not least, because the extinction of humanity seems like a real possibility.

If the answer is no, that makes God a human creation. Who dies with us as a species. I doubt that many would accept that idea.

If the answer is yes, then that has its own implication. That without our religious texts, and all the churches and services are not needed, because God is beyond this. Even the Quaker ministry from silence is very dependent on people being present to listen.
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Comments

  • Of course God does not need all the churches and services! If they're needed at all, it's us that needs them!
  • Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?
  • Without us God would exist, we were created as a result of God's conscious choice to do so.

    God created us, not the other way round.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?

    15 or so years ago, there was a regular Catholic poster who propounded the opinion that the incarnation, death and resurrection on this tiny speck of the creation was sufficient for the vastness of creation over all its existence. Was that Ingo B? I can't now remember.
  • Sounds like a stupid question, but it was raised in a book I am reading by Francis Ward, and it made me think. Not least, because the extinction of humanity seems like a real possibility.

    Given that Christian belief includes an afterlife, the extinction of the human race wouldn't mean there were no more people - it would just mean all the people were in Heaven rather than some of us being on earth.
    If the answer is no, that makes God a human creation. Who dies with us as a species. I doubt that many would accept that idea.

    If the answer is no then God does not exist. I've read a few books where gods exist purely because people believed them into existing (notably Pratchett's Discworld series), but it's not an idea I've ever encountered from a serious theologian.
    If the answer is yes, then that has its own implication. That without our religious texts, and all the churches and services are not needed, because God is beyond this. Even the Quaker ministry from silence is very dependent on people being present to listen.

    Not needed by whom? I'd always understood that such things were for our benefit, not God's.
  • All points taken. But the question is also about what a divine being existing means when no sentient creatures know of his existence indicates.

    Is there any difference between a God who does not intervene (He doesn't seem to intervene in any other creatures life), and who no sentient creature acknowledges and a God who does not exist?

    If there are no beings who can acknowledge or appreciate the existence of God, what does his existence mean?
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Shroedingers Cat: If there are no beings who can acknowledge or appreciate the existence of God, what does his existence mean?

    Ask Her. Cogito Ergo Sum territory?
  • Gee D wrote: »
    Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?

    15 or so years ago, there was a regular Catholic poster who propounded the opinion that the incarnation, death and resurrection on this tiny speck of the creation was sufficient for the vastness of creation over all its existence. Was that Ingo B? I can't now remember.

    That seems completely reasonable to me. The life of a human being for a few decades is more important than the existence of a lifeless galaxy for a trillion years.
  • Gee D wrote: »
    Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?

    15 or so years ago, there was a regular Catholic poster who propounded the opinion that the incarnation, death and resurrection on this tiny speck of the creation was sufficient for the vastness of creation over all its existence. Was that Ingo B? I can't now remember.

    That seems completely reasonable to me. The life of a human being for a few decades is more important than the existence of a lifeless galaxy for a trillion years.

    Although if there were other sentient beings elsewhere in the universe, that would be different.
  • All points taken. But the question is also about what a divine being existing means when no sentient creatures know of his existence indicates.

    Is there any difference between a God who does not intervene (He doesn't seem to intervene in any other creatures life), and who no sentient creature acknowledges and a God who does not exist?

    If there are no beings who can acknowledge or appreciate the existence of God, what does his existence mean?

    God would be aware of the existence of God and would appreciate it. With the Trinity, this even involves interpersonal relationship.
  • Not certain that we should be over 10 posts in with no one quoting:
    There was a young man who said "God
    Must find it exceedingly odd
    To think that the tree
    Should continue to be
    When there's no one about in the quad."

    "Dear Sir: Your astonishment's odd;
    I am always about in the quad.
    And that's why the tree
    Will continue to be
    Since observed by, Yours faithfully, God."
  • Gee D wrote: »
    Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?

    15 or so years ago, there was a regular Catholic poster who propounded the opinion that the incarnation, death and resurrection on this tiny speck of the creation was sufficient for the vastness of creation over all its existence. Was that Ingo B? I can't now remember.

    It's a pretty orthodox opinion across the churches. Nothing to do with us being "special" or "the center of the universe" in some obnoxious way. Just that what God did (which happened to be here, and could have been elsewhere) affected the whole of his creation--not because we're so great but because he is.
  • All points taken. But the question is also about what a divine being existing means when no sentient creatures know of his existence indicates.

    Is there any difference between a God who does not intervene (He doesn't seem to intervene in any other creatures life), and who no sentient creature acknowledges and a God who does not exist?

    If there are no beings who can acknowledge or appreciate the existence of God, what does his existence mean?

    I've seen him intervene, though nobody needs to believe that. But even if it were just as you say, God exists as a Trinity. There is plenty of "society" within the Godhead to allow him to observe and be observed, as well as having coffee klatches, sewing groups, men's work days, and all the necessary stuff for a church.
  • Is there any difference between a God who does not intervene (He doesn't seem to intervene in any other creatures life), and who no sentient creature acknowledges and a God who does not exist?

    Yes. The first one exists, the second doesn't.
    If there are no beings who can acknowledge or appreciate the existence of God, what does his existence mean?

    Is existence reliant on being observed? I don't think so. There's roughly a 100% likelihood that hundreds - thousands - of species have existed on the earth without leaving any fossil record for us to observe and record. But they still existed. A tree could germinate, grow, live and die in the deepest rainforests without a single human ever observing it, but it still existed (and it still made a sound when it fell, too).

    If, on the other hand, your question is more along the lines of "what relevance or significance would such an unobserved species/deity have for us" then that's different. As far as we are concerned it might as well not exist at all. But that doesn't mean it doesn't, if you see what I mean.
  • If it's "what relevance to us" and we don't exist, well then, the question answers itself.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited October 11
    Sounds like a stupid question, but it was raised in a book I am reading by Francis Ward, and it made me think. Not least, because the extinction of humanity seems like a real possibility.

    If the answer is no, that makes God a human creation. Who dies with us as a species. I doubt that many would accept that idea.

    If the answer is yes, then that has its own implication. That without our religious texts, and all the churches and services are not needed, because God is beyond this. Even the Quaker ministry from silence is very dependent on people being present to listen.

    How anthropocentric! He's always done people. As in always. Forever and ever. From eternity. For infinity. He's not Earth local, tribal, geocentric. But the Devil is of course.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    edited October 12
    Gee D wrote: »
    Did God exist for the 15 billion years (give or take a few) of the universe before humanity evolved? If so, then God will continue to exist if we become extinct.

    Possibly more meaningful to ask, would God exist if intelligent life never evolves in the universe? Or, if God exists in those circumstances is that the same God that we imperfectly know?

    15 or so years ago, there was a regular Catholic poster who propounded the opinion that the incarnation, death and resurrection on this tiny speck of the creation was sufficient for the vastness of creation over all its existence. Was that Ingo B? I can't now remember.

    That seems completely reasonable to me. The life of a human being for a few decades is more important than the existence of a lifeless galaxy for a trillion years.

    Although if there were other sentient beings elsewhere in the universe, that would be different.

    That's what I was getting at.

    It's a pretty orthodox opinion across the churches. Nothing to do with us being "special" or "the center of the universe" in some obnoxious way. Just that what God did (which happened to be here, and could have been elsewhere) affected the whole of his creation--not because we're so great but because he is.

    Madame and I have trouble with that, and with its inherent assumption that we are special. How does our knowledge reach other beings on a planet several million light years way?
  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited October 12
    I'm confused. How or why do other beings need to know what we know?

    If you mean "How do they know what Christ did," I assume that whatever they need to know, if anything, the Lord will communicate. It's entirely possible to be blessed by something you have no idea happened, and this could be a case like that.

    Jesus' death and resurrection seem to have more than one purpose. The one we're most familiar with as fallen human beings (namely, our redemption) may not apply to them at all. They may be unfallen and doing great. They may be in some other difficulty which we know nothing about but which God has made his own provisions for, apart from us. That doesn't stop them from having a share in what Jesus did on earth, just as all creation has, from the tiniest microbe to the greatest angel.

    I believe the Orthodox teach (@Mousethief, correct me, please!) that even if we had not needed redemption, the incarnation would have happened anyway--I'm told, "For glory," though I'm not super clear on what that means. Certainly the incarnation made God part of his universe in a way that he was not before--a closer union, which can only be a blessing and honor to all created things.

    ETA: Here's a starting place for the question of what share creation has in Jesus. It's from Romans 8.
    18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    We don't need to know Lamb Chopped, but it is (to me at least) an interesting line of thought. We may be the only sentient beings in this vast universe, although the size of it makes us suspect that we are not. Did/do those others need salvation/redemption as we did?

    It does have some more relevance if you look at the entirety of human life on this planet. Let's assume that the first people identifiably human came into existence 150,000 years ago. Did any of the millions from then until the Incarnation need redemption for sin, and if so, how did they obtain it? Even after that event, what about the First People here? Random thoughts perhaps, but they do go back to the title of this thread.
  • The incarnation (and redemption) clearly "works" both ways in time. Abraham etc. were saved by and in Christ though as yet they did not know his name. Why not in space? I really hesitate to draw lines and say "this God could not do." He has told us that "no one comes to the Father but through me [Christ]". He has NOT told us that coming through Christ necessarily involves knowing a certain amount of detail of the outline of Christ's life, death and resurrection, or the Four Spiritual Laws, or any such thing. And of course, since the Spirit blows where he wills, he is capable of giving faith even to infants and the extremely mentally disabled. So I'm not going to say what he could or could not have done with my Cherokee ancestors. (Though I look forward to finding out.)
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    I'd say that Abraham and the others were saved through Christ in their belief in Jehovah, the one God, the God by whom was later revealed His existence in three persons. Did He reveal Himself to residents of a planet of a star in some far distant galaxy? We cannot know in this life.
  • God would have become incarnate to unite the divine and human natures, which is to say to unite us with himself. Adam and Eve were perfect in the garden, but they weren't done. They weren't all they were created to be. That would come with the incarnation. Speculation: This would have been a lot sooner if they hadn't've fucked up.
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    We have it on good authority (or an ill medieval anchorite hallucinating *) that the entirety of creation is about the size of a hazelnut viewed from without, and looks so little that only God's love sustains it.

    (*)Revelations of Julian of Norwich.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    mousethief wrote: »
    God would have become incarnate to unite the divine and human natures, which is to say to unite us with himself. Adam and Eve were perfect in the garden, but they weren't done. They weren't all they were created to be. That would come with the incarnation. Speculation: This would have been a lot sooner if they hadn't've fucked up.

    More difficult to make that work when we know there was no point in history with a garden and an Adam and Eve.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited October 12
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited October 12
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited October 12
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate


    Doc Tor:

    There was a young man who said "God
    Must find it exceedingly odd
    To think that the tree
    Should continue to be
    When there's no one about in the quad."

    "Dear Sir: Your astonishment's odd;
    I am always about in the quad.
    And that's why the tree
    Will continue to be
    Since observed by, Yours faithfully, God."

    Great Post,Doc Says it all, now as then. I have, however, come across a couple of lesser ripostes.


    If objects depend on our seeing
    So that trees, unobserved, would cease tree-ing,
    Then my question is: Who
    Is the one who sees you
    And assures your persistence in being?

    Dear Sir,
    You reason most oddly.
    To be's to be seen for the bod'ly.
    But for spirits like me,
    To be is to see.
    Sincerely,
    The one who is godly.

  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.
  • mousethiefmousethief Shipmate
    edited October 12
    Doc Tor:

    There was a young man who said "God
    Must find it exceedingly odd
    To think that the tree
    Should continue to be
    When there's no one about in the quad."

    "Dear Sir: Your astonishment's odd;
    I am always about in the quad.
    And that's why the tree
    Will continue to be
    Since observed by, Yours faithfully, God."

    Great Post,Doc Says it all, now as then. I have, however, come across a couple of lesser ripostes.

    If objects depend on our seeing
    So that trees, unobserved, would cease tree-ing,
    Then my question is: Who
    Is the one who sees you
    And assures your persistence in being?

    Dear Sir,
    You reason most oddly.
    To be's to be seen for the bod'ly.
    But for spirits like me,
    To be is to see.
    Sincerely,
    The one who is godly.

    [/quote]

    Wrote this years ago. Requires "been" read in American accent.

    There once was a bish who said, "Bees
    and boulders and houses and trees
    exist when looked on,
    but when not —poof!— are gone,
    Since esse est percipi, you see.

    Just then there appeared into view
    A tree unforeseen hitherto,
    For it had not been
    Since quarter to ten
    When God takes His nap (until two).

    ##########
    *to exist is to be perceived
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.
  • KarlLB wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    God would have become incarnate to unite the divine and human natures, which is to say to unite us with himself. Adam and Eve were perfect in the garden, but they weren't done. They weren't all they were created to be. That would come with the incarnation. Speculation: This would have been a lot sooner if they hadn't've fucked up.

    More difficult to make that work when we know there was no point in history with a garden and an Adam and Eve.

    To be sure. Metaphors/parables are hard to unravel. I can't claim to have done so.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.

    NO criteria...
  • jay_emmjay_emm Shipmate
    Isaiah arguably kind of riffs on that op theme. Paraphrasing "If I needed a tasty cow I wouldn't ask humans"
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.

    NO criteria...

    We have no information or means of obtaining information on what may exist beyond this universe, except perhaps what God may choose to reveal.
  • There are two parts to God, the social construction that is part of human culture and what we refer to most of the time and the mystery which is profoundly beyond that. The first would of course collapse with human society. I am not sure we can talk of the mystery as existing, far to allusive for that. At least if existing implies being part of this universe in the way we are part of this universe then the answer is No.

    The question was again?
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Purgatory Host
    If consciousness is an emergent property of complexity; the universe is infinite and complex, as well by definition containing all power and knowledge whilst being omnipresent - is it not God ?
  • If consciousness is an emergent property of complexity; the universe is infinite and complex, as well by definition containing all power and knowledge whilst being omnipresent - is it not God ?

    This seems an "I swim, fish swim, therefore I'm a fish" argument. Consciousness is an emergent property of complexity. God is conscious. The universe is complex. Therefore God is an emergent property of the universe.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.

    NO criteria...

    We have no information or means of obtaining information on what may exist beyond this universe, except perhaps what God may choose to reveal.

    We don't need any and He's revealed everything He ever will as Jesus.

    Eternity is the ultimate fact and it commands uniformity.
  • Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.

    NO criteria...

    We have no information or means of obtaining information on what may exist beyond this universe, except perhaps what God may choose to reveal.

    We don't need any and He's revealed everything He ever will as Jesus.

    Eternity is the ultimate fact and it commands uniformity.

    No it doesn't.

    There, a statement with as much support, biblical, empirical or otherwise, as your own.
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Purgatory Host
    mousethief wrote: »
    If consciousness is an emergent property of complexity; the universe is infinite and complex, as well by definition containing all power and knowledge whilst being omnipresent - is it not God ?

    This seems an "I swim, fish swim, therefore I'm a fish" argument. Consciousness is an emergent property of complexity. God is conscious. The universe is complex. Therefore God is an emergent property of the universe.

    But also that a consciousness arising from the complexity of the universe would seem to have most of the attributes we ascribe to God. In what way would it be different ?
  • Well, it wouldn't be omniscient, it wouldn't be transcendent, it wouldn't be omnipotent, I see no particular reason to see why it would be loving, it wouldn't be eternal, it wouldn't be immutable, it couldn't become incarnate... I could go on???
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Purgatory Host
    edited October 12
    How could it not be those things, they are all contained with it ? (With the possible exception of eternal.)
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    Is the universe complex? Bits of it are locally complex, but they are separated by vast spaces that seem pretty low complexity as far as we can tell.
  • But that just adds to the overall complexity, if you see what I mean.

    Personally I am not convinced by the idea that complexity leads to consciousness. What proof have we of that?

    As for how a conscious universe and God would differ, IMHO one would still be either created or uncreate; and the other would be both creator and uncreate. So there's one thing.

    The other, strangely enough, is that God-as-I-know-lacks certain things the universe has. He is not evil. He is not stupid. and so on, and so forth...

    Which could take us down the rabbithole of whether or not evil is simply a privation of good, but I don't think I want to go there today.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    To suggest that we are the only intentional species in, order of magnitude, ten to the twenty two star systems, ten to the twenty four worlds, in our practically infinite infinitesimal universe, is fanatically absurd. It's about as likely as all the oxygen in the room gathering in the corner under the window.

    Hang on, you're saying there are, on average, 100 worlds in each stars system?

    We've simply no way of quantifying the likelihood of life. For all we know it is life emerging at all that is less likely than the concentration of oxygen molecules, never mind it happening more than once.

    Aye, planets, moons and the 10^22 is conservative.

    I don't understand your utter lack of uniformitarianism.

    Everything is mediocre.

    And then, of course, there's the infinity of universes from eternity.

    The principle of mediocrity is a rule of thumb, not a statement of fact. It's the idea that if the evidence seems to be pointing to us being in a unique and special place in the universe (e.g. everything appears to be moving away from us, placing us at the centre of the universe) then that evidence should be interrogated particularly careful to see if another explanation is possible. As regards life elsewhere in the universe we just don't have the data to even begin yet.

    We don't need any more data and we'll never get it anyway. Everywhere is the centre of the universe.

    And again, what about the previous infinity of universes from eternity?

    The ones that are idle speculation? Turtles all the way down [is as valid as any other suggestion].

    Yeahhhhhhh. By what criteria of validity would that be?

    That's my point, there aren't any.

    What, there are criteria for differentiating between the validity of the axiomatic infinite regress of existence, i.e. eternal nature, and that of an infinitely deep pile of turtles?

    Riiiiight.

    NO criteria...

    We have no information or means of obtaining information on what may exist beyond this universe, except perhaps what God may choose to reveal.

    We don't need any and He's revealed everything He ever will as Jesus.

    Eternity is the ultimate fact and it commands uniformity.

    No it doesn't.

    There, a statement with as much support, biblical, empirical or otherwise, as your own.

    Yeah sure.

    In every sense, nothing changes does it?
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