Either God exists or He does not.
If He does not, then science does not matter. Nothing does. Anything anybody does is mere prejudice, whim. There is no good, there is no evil. There is no point in doing science, or in anything else.
Of course, you can claim that science is necessary (we’re still assuming God does not exist), but that is, like, your opinion, man. To quote a higher authority. My opinion is that it doesn’t matter. You may say that your opinion (joined with many others) outweighs mine, which is surely true. More people agree with you. But that “truth” is determined by vote is not itself true. Not that that matters. Nothing does.
It does not matter if everybody starves, or no one does. It does not matter if we make no new invention, or all old ones are destroyed. You may say that saving lives is the very purpose of science, but that is just so much hot air. All existence means nothing. The universe, since God is not there, is all there is, and the universe is nothing. It doesn’t feel remorse or pity—or any emotion. It does not even not care that you exist. It can’t care, one way or the other, since there is nothing there to care.
Any findings made by science—to use the most technical and terse word—are bullshit. So is this opinion, and so is your opinion. So is everything.
Do I make myself clear?
You say the economy should be high. I say, why? High or low, what’s the difference? You’ll be dead and gone and forgotten soon. See ya.
You say mass starvation is bad. I say, to whom? People live, people die. What possible difference can it make (now) or how? Let them die. Let them live. It’s only molecules bouncing back and forth acting according to deterministic rules. You technically don’t even exist. Only electrons and some other who-gives-a-damn particles do.
You say you don’t like pain? I say, stuff it, Nancy. Like the man said, Without God, everything is permitted. Maybe I like giving you pain. And I’m bigger than you, and way meaner. That you don’t like pain doesn’t mean squat. It’s just another opinion. Pain is just nerve impulses, or whatever, which are meaningless. And the universe can’t even not care.
If you or everybody dies in great pain tomorrow, so what? What’s the big deal?
There is no deal. There is nothing. If God doesn’t exist.
Now suppose God exists (the God of Thomas Aquinas, Aristotle, and the other greatest minds of all time). Therefore a science that does not account for this most important, fundamental, crucial, consequential fact is at best a weak science, a lacking science, a science filled with holes. A science that pretends not to see its base, or that suddenly feigns deafness when hearing “God”, is, in a word, incomplete.
This applies as strongly from the hard sciences as all the way down to those who dwell in the intellectual slums of academia.
Physics is operating only one leg suspended in space if it can’t answer what is happening at base, because that base must be supported by pillars designed by God, or by God Himself. Scientists are increasingly starting to realize the role metaphysics must play if any future work is to progress. If physics doesn’t meet metaphysics, it dies or becomes desultory.
The so-called mind-body “problem”—why qualia? what is intellect?—cannot be solved without references to what it means to have a mind, and that science by itself cannot provide. Not if that way is determined to ignore God. Which, you will remember, we are now assuming for the sake of argument, exists.
Why are people the way they are? How reliant is their intellect, which is non-material, on the body, which is? Psychology without God will never solve their fundamental puzzles either, not if they ignore the reason there is a reason for psychology. And this includes the evolutionary psychology beloved of reactionaries and (curiously) so-called scientific atheists.
There will never be such a thing as “hard” AI—not without the cooperation of God. For the kind of thinking that leads to thinking like us needs God.
All materialism is a dead end, if God exists. All so-called “ultimate” answers will be failures, frauds, and fallacies.
If God exists, and science says He doesn’t, that science must fail eventually.
Categories: Philosophy, Statistics
Science cannot prove the existence of science. Math has proven that math is fallible.
“There is no God.” – Bertrand Russell
“There is no Bertrand Russell.” – God
(And, almost predictably, Mr. Russell was a sexual deviant.)
One rhetorical question you missed was: If God does not exist, what is moral? And what is immoral?
It’s amusing/alarming/frightening to hear PC-Prog atheists babble about this, that, or the other being “immoral,” or calling for their desired action because “morality” demands it.
Where, in heaven’s name, do they think that morality came from? And can they define their own morals?
The latest PC-Prog darling says it best: ” I think that there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.”
What does “morally right” mean to her?
Morality is, like, your opinion, man!
Nice post. The DNA molecules in the Briggs meat unit must be desperate and working overtime to copy themselves. The Dawkins unit, however, has a better strategy: flamboyant neckties tied with perfect knots. Like shiny stones and the sexual organs of plants, proper neckties seem to attract the molecules residing in incubator units.
McChuck—Thought that was Nietzsche, not Russel. Briggs is doing a wonderful channeling of Nietzsche, I think. A sad, depressed, life-hating individual who rejected the notion of God. Apparently, atheism didn’t work well for Nietzsche. (Maybe he really understood what it meant, unlike the “happy, carefree” atheists of today that rip everyone apart when religion comes up, call names and insult. You know, those lovely examples of “morality without God”.)
As to the accuracy, without God, humans are no different whatsoever than lions, wolverines or rabbits. They live, they die, nature and the other lions, wolverines or rabbits don’t care. It’s life—short, without meaning or morality, simple existence. Simple to understand. Nothing matters indeed.
Saying that God exist is not sufficient either. You will need One who will explicitly makes sure that morality matters. The Christian God does, but isn’t that a minority standpoint among Gods?
For science to matter is that there are enough people being interested in obtaining results that actually work.
Actually, Lions DO care. That’s why they’re kings. But the rest you’re spot on.
“If He does not, then science does not matter. Nothing does.”
I’m an atheist but things matter to me, therefore you’re wrong. That was easy!
But while I’m here, why would the fact of God existing automatically mean that things matter anyway? Why should I care what God thinks about anything? (Not that an immaterial entity could think anyway, but just for argument’s sake.)
@ Kent Clizbe:
“If God does not exist, what is moral? And what is immoral?”
Your question is a non-sequiter. The existence or otherwise of God has nothing to do with morality, as can be determined from the fact that modern Christians denounce slavery but the Bible condones it. Human morality likely stems from our evolutionary heritage as a social species, where cooperation with other humans would mean the difference between life and death.
The molecule is strong with swordfishtrombone.
“If He does not, then science does not matter.”
Even if He doesn’t exist, science still matters to millions of people. Thus, it’s a fact that science matters to millions of people. Thus, your sentence is false.
This sentence is also false for the above reason: the fact that science matters to people means that there exists an objective state in which something matters.
“Anything anybody does is mere prejudice, whim.”
This sentence is false because mere prejudice and whim are not the exclusive reasons for human action. For example, John paints out of fear because Lauren forces him to, at gunpoint. The explanation for John painting is neither prejudice nor whim but fear. Thus, the above sentence is false.
“There is no good, there is no evil.”
“Good” and “evil” here are vague terms that you do not precisely define, leaving the sentence neither true nor false—but obscure.
“There is no point in doing science, or in anything else.”
Thomas wakes up, goes to his government laboratory and does science in order to earn a paycheck and feed his children; Jenny plants flowers because she hopes to see them bloom eventually. These actions by Thomas and Jenny both have a point. Thus, the above sentence is false.
Au contraire mon frere!
“Morality” without a higher moral code is totally meaningless.
Hypocrisy and failure to follow the code, along with a myriad of minor inconsistencies, do not negate the moral code.
Again–what is “morality”? Is there some “humanist” morality? What are its tenets?
Just look at atheistic, materialistic, godless societies–this experiment has been tried in reality, and there is copious evidence that illustrates their “morality.”
The fact is that humanist/materialist/atheist “morality” is absolutely whatever is needed in the moment. Do we need to slaughter a few million? That’s moral! Need to rip living fetuses from their mother’s wombs? That’s ok–it’s moral! Need to enslave and imprison millions more? No problem! It’s moral!
The evidence is there for those who care to see.
No God? No morality.
@ kent Clizbe,
““Morality” without a higher moral code is totally meaningless.”
Your claim is totally meaningless. What is a “higher” moral code? A moral code coming from God (if God existed) would be meaningless as it couldn’t be based on any justifications or reasoning.
“Hypocrisy and failure to follow the code, along with a myriad of minor inconsistencies, do not negate the moral code.”
The Bible’s condoning of slavery is part of its moral code, as is genocide and conquest rape. In any case, your argument would also apply to secular morality.
“Again–what is “morality”? Is there some “humanist” morality? What are its tenets?”
Yes, it’s called Humanism.
“Just look at atheistic, materialistic, godless societies–this experiment has been tried in reality, and there is copious evidence that illustrates their “morality.””
Looking around the world today, atheistic and materialistic societies would generally seem to be the best ones in which to live.
“The fact is that humanist/materialist/atheist “morality” is absolutely whatever is needed in the moment. Do we need to slaughter a few million? That’s moral! Need to rip living fetuses from their mother’s wombs? That’s ok–it’s moral! Need to enslave and imprison millions more? No problem! It’s moral!”
In The Bible, God killed millions as and when required to fix his bonkers plan, and he allows all the human (and animal) suffering to which you refer, which he could presumably stop if he wanted to. In any case, an unchanging morality is one which condones slavery because it was condoned in the Bible. Change can be good.
“No God? No morality.”
This is transparently obviously not true. There are secular moral systems, therefore you are wrong.
mere prejudice and whim are not the exclusive reasons for human action.
Wait. I thought free will was an illusion. There cannot be “reasons” of any sort. Stuff “just happens.”
modern Christians denounce slavery but the Bible condones it.
“Good” and “evil” here are vague terms
A good doctor is one who heals his patients. A good poker player is one who wins his games. A good bronc buster is one who tames his horses. All these goods are determined by the intentions of the actors. Hence, Aristotle defined the good as that which all seek. cf. http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/nicomachaen.1.i.html
Evil is a deficiency in a good. For example, an archer who misses his mark; a driver who gets lost or wrecks his car.
These terms take of a moral dimension when they involve deficiencies of perfections in the moral virtues. This does not mean that everyone has a good grasp of them.
Saying that God exist is not sufficient either. You will need One who will explicitly makes sure that morality matters.
No. This implies that the Good is something apart from God, something separately imposed. But by the convertibility of the transcendentals, God is the Good, just as he is the Truth and the One, and consequently, Being Itself. This does not apply to lesser beings like “gods” (pl.)
I am, therefore I think.
Science with G-d is Incomplete!
The question maybe, why is this a statement (verse) binary opposition?
Explain. . . Isaiah 45:7
Published on Jul 9, 2015
Is Jonathan Cahn’s Shemitah teaching kosher?
God and science coexist. Why should it be either/or?
“Wait. I thought free will was an illusion. There cannot be ‘reasons’ of any sort. Stuff ‘just happens.’ ”
Free will is an illusion according to whom? Me? How do you know what I believe? Some atheists maintain that if God does not exist, then there can’t be free will. Some maintain that even if God does not exist, then there can be free will. Some religious maintain that if God exists, then there can’t be free will. Some religious maintain that only if God exists can there be free will. Etc.
Though not a Christian, I myself believe in God. As for my views on free will, I see no reason why, even if I were an atheist, I would logically have to conclude that the sentence “Free will is an illusion” is true. Is it impossible for us to live in a possible world that has no God yet there exists free will? If so, how do you know the truth of that last sentence, i.e., “It is impossible for us to live in a possible world that has no God yet free will exists.”
“There cannot be ‘reasons’ of any sort. Stuff ‘just happens.’ ”
Even if free will is an illusion, an event X still has a reason for occurring; its reason is its cause.
“A good doctor is one who heals his patients. A good poker player is one who wins his games. A good bronc buster is one who tames his horses. All these goods are determined by the intentions of the actors. Hence, Aristotle defined the good as that which all seek. Evil is a deficiency in a good. For example, an archer who misses his mark; a driver who gets lost or wrecks his car. These terms take of a moral dimension when they involve deficiencies of perfections in the moral virtues. This does not mean that everyone has a good grasp of them.”
Wouldn’t this make good a serial killer who successfully continues killing?
@ Ye Olde Statistician,
A creepy attempt to weasel out of the fact that the Inspired Word of God condones slavery. There should be a follow-up article entitled “The cheap grace of condemning genocide”.
“Aristotle defined the good as that which all seek”
If Good is defined in this way, it isn’t good, and if it applies to everything, it’s useless. If an archer who misses his mark is an example of Evil (see below) then what if the archer is aiming for a person? Is it good that they hit them? In any case, outside of our subjective perception, nature is directionless.
“Evil is a deficiency in a good. For example, an archer who misses his mark; a driver who gets lost or wrecks his car.”
Or a genetic mutation which, when added to a few trillion other mutations, produces a human being?
Well, swordfish, we knew you would pop up sooner or later. And, as always, you avoid the real question- is there such a thing as true evil? You seem to think so, as you accuse so many others of it. But you seem to consider yourself oddly free of it, eh?
Now if there is such a thing as evil, and there is, then the whole point of the Bible (both halves) is that God is constantly pointing this out to man. He points out the obvious- that man is enslaved to sin. Even you, swordy. And that all men, as a result, will die. Even you, swordy. And so, who is it that is engaged in slavery? Everyone. (Except the Mother of God. Which I’m sure you will contest).
And who then is it engaged in this (self)-genocide? Everyone. Including you, Mr. Fish.
So then, what difference does it make if the Maker decides to harvest a few (or a lot) of His errant images before they would be pleased to give up the ghost? And pray tell, just when would that time be, if it was left to us? Yes, never. Which is where we get the concept of the Zombie. The un-dead. Those who are literally falling apart, yet cannot die. What an attractive fate, eh?
“Science without God is incomplete”
“If God exists, and science says He doesn’t, that science must fail eventually.”
Completely backwards, that.
Much of what science addresses has nothing whatsoever to do with God, if it (god) exits nor if so what about it. Consider things like the Black Death, which religion attributed to divine intervention, but we know to have been caused by disease transmitted by a flea — with a clear pattern of less severe infections in areas with better cleanliness.
Studies of the universe revealed the heresy (since recanted by the Church) the Earth is not the center of the universe. (though, oh-so-many believers want to still believe that what the Church did, said and its rationale weren’t what they were re Galileo…despite objective documentation proving the Church’s Bible-based nonsense).
In other words, should one really look, one doesn’t have to look far to find example after example where faith had to recant some element of religious doctrine due to the overwhelming proofs of science. Religion has yet to force science to recant credible findings (and the use of sloppy/poor science to discredit “science” is nonsense — as only the poorly substantiated or unsubstantiated findings can be revoked are downgraded to hypotheses).
BOTTOM LINE: Religion has failed, continues to fail, and will continue to fail under the onslaught of objective data revealed by science. Not the other way ’round.
“Consider things like the Black Death, which religion attributed to divine intervention [do you have a citation for that btw?], but we know to have been caused by disease transmitted by a flea”
Why can’t it be both?
Oh, and better not bring up Galileo if TOF is still listening.
@ John Watkins,
“you avoid the real question- is there such a thing as true evil?
1. Who says this is the real question? 2. Evil isn’t some kind of disembodied force acting in the world.
“You seem to think so, as you accuse so many others of it.”
I’m criticising Christianity, not individual people.
“But you seem to consider yourself oddly free of it, eh?”
When have I ever said that?
“man is enslaved to sin. Even you, swordy.”
We’re not perfect, which is exactly what you’d expect given our evolutionary origins, but we don’t deserve to die. Holding us to a standard of perfection whilst knowing that we can’t meet such a standard is another example of God’s unfairness.
“And that all men, as a result, will die.”
All living things die. This hasn’t got anything to do with evil. Are flowers evil?
“And so, who is it that is engaged in slavery? Everyone.”
No, we’re not. You can’t just redefine the word ‘slavery’ to suit your point.
“So then, what difference does it make if the Maker decides to harvest a few (or a lot) of His errant images before they would be pleased to give up the ghost?”
What difference does it make if God decides to mow down a few billion men, women, and children? It’s strange that one minute God is supposed to be essential for morality to mean anything, the next he’s casually murdering children and sending them to eternal torture.
Religion! You couldn’t make it up. Oh, wait…
Dear Mr. Fishy-
‘We’re not perfect, which is exactly what you’d expect given our evolutionary origins, but we don’t deserve to die. Holding us to a standard of perfection whilst knowing that we can’t meet such a standard is another example of God’s unfairness.’
How typical of you to omit the overarching message of Christianity- the fundamental element of Mercy. God knows we’re not perfect. And as for ‘fairness’, we chose our imperfection (whether you wish to believe that or not), and so He offers us the other way out of our imperfection (and it’s not evolution). And that’s the one thing you won’t do- ask for mercy. Your pride won’t let you.
“How typical of you to omit the overarching message of Christianity- the fundamental element of Mercy.”
It isn’t merciful for God to forgive us for behaviours he’s labelled as sins in the first place. In any case, there’s no mercy shown for the sin of not believing. I ask you: Would you condemn people to eternal torture just for not believing you exist?
“And that’s the one thing you won’t do- ask for mercy. Your pride won’t let you.”
It isn’t that my pride won’t let me, it’s that I don’t believe such a God exists.
Goodness me, I leave you all for five minutes and you’re at it again.
If you believe in God it doesn’t make you cleverer, or even more moral, necessarily.
The question really is what makes humans moral creatures?
Whilst church attendance has fallen, people all over he world slowly, in my view, conform to the west’s prevailing influence. The truth can’t help but win, in the end.
The title is incomplete.
Dependant upon world view, science is derivative’s ed from the same place as other kinds of values about truth. Whether or not someone believes in how things happened in the beginning have no bearing on ability to know truth, and know it better than some of us who struggle with logic, for example.
For me, it does require explanation, how truth and values come about from matter.
Thanks to some explanations given by Swordfish in the past and others I have been able to see how some of the puzzles are reconciled from an atheist perspective.
nobody knows. People feel sure, or strongly suspect. That’s all.
Science is no more special than music, as a category, I mean, so questions of purpose and why, why science, why beauty, why music are explained either as fundamental to the fabric of the universe or derived.
Someone silly said there is no why. It’s my favourite question.
Recently I heard Feynman speaking about why and getting slightly irritated by it. Ken posted a lecture of his from which I listened to a few more. Thank you Ken.
Feynman just didn’t concern himself with why because it is multidimensional kind of question…too vague for science itself.