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At some point in time the universe came into existence. The creator which caused it to exist is God.
The argument can also be expressed as follows:
• nothing can exist without being created;
• the universe exists;
• therefore the universe was created;
• the creator of the universe is God.
At first glance, this argument - the existence of the universe proves the existence of God - is appealing and it convinces many people. But as an argument, it has a fatal weakness - the idea that nothing can exist without being created. It's time to examine the implications of that assertion.
3.1b A yes-or-no question
Is it true that nothing can exist without being created? Expressed differently, does everything that exists need a creator?
If you answer yes, you must accept the following implications:
• the universe exists, therefore it was created - call that creator God
• God exists, therefore he was created - call that creator God-squared
• God-squared exists, therefore he was created - by God-cubed
• God-cubed exists, therefore he was created - by God-quadrupled
• and so on and so on.
If everything that exists needs a creator, there must be an infinity of creators. That conclusion does not create a philosophical problem - there may be an infinity of creators - but it destroys the claim of believers that nothing exists beyond God.
If you answer no to the question (not everything that exists needs a creator), you must accept the following implications:
• God does not need a creator, and
• the universe does not need a creator.
If things do not need a creator the universe does not need God. Like its predecessor, this conclusion does not create a philosophical problem - the universe may, or may not have a creator - but it takes away the necessity for God.
We still have to look at the physical evidence, but we have arrived at a point where philosophy tells us:
• there may be no creator, or only one creator or many creators;
• a single creator is not necessary to explain the universe.
3.1c Narrowing the options
Let's take these conclusions a little further. We have:
a. an infinity of creators;
b. one creator;
c. no creator.
How do we choose between them?
Answer: apply Occam's Razor - the simplest solution is always preferable. Compare the three options again:
a. an infinity of creators: is it likely that there are countless creators? is there any
physical evidence to back up this proposition? how do we explain the
relationship of each creator to the creator above it in the hierarchy?
b. one creator; we have to explain both the eternal existence of God and the
mechanism by which God created the world
c. no creator; we have to explain either the eternal existence of the universe or
the mechanism by which the universe came into existence.
Option a. forces us to explain an infinity of phenomena; b. forces us to explain two phenomena; c. forces us to explain one phenomenon. The simplest solution is therefore c: there is no creator.
Occam's Razor in itself is not proof, although it is acceptable as proof as long as there is no contrary evidence. Does such evidence exist? So far we have looked at the question from a theoretical perspective, but will we have to change our minds when confronted with hard facts? Does the physical nature of the universe force us to conclude that there is a God? We begin that discussion in the next section.
Chapter Three: Section 2 The balanced universe
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If God existed, he would...
admire the beauty of a universe that he did not create
recognize that eternity is meaningless
deny both heaven and hell
disown all men and women who speak in his name
denounce the harm caused by religious "morality"
help the human race to thrive without him
If God existed, he would be an atheist.
What is the difference between science and faith?
science is certain of nothing and requires proof of everything
faith is certain of everything and requires proof of nothing
Which do you trust?
"I know there is no God"
"I believe there is no God"
Check the answer