ForumsWEPRThe Religion Debate Thread

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nichodemus
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nichodemus
14,974 posts
Grand Duke

So yeah, our threads on religion have long since died out, so I figured it would be time to start afresh here!

Do you believe God exists (I know almost all of you don't)? Do you feel religion is important today? Is it a force for good? Discuss everything related to that here!

I'm going to start the ball rolling:

We all know about the rise of ISIS and the terrible acts it perpetuates. Does that show that Islam and religion in general is an awful concept? Is it the people who twist it? Or is it fundamentally an evil force?

Roping in the WERP frequenters
@MageGrayWolf @Kasic @Hahiha @FishPreferred @Doombreed @09philj

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Ntech
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Ntech
257 posts
Shepherd

@Hahiha


The thing is, claiming that there must have been God to start it all is not a logical claim. If that's what you believe, then that's fine. But it is not a necessary nor a logical conclusion. We simply don't know.

Well, I do believe that it is fully logical that there is a God. I would be happy to discuss theology too, if anyone is willing, but in a different thread so that this thread may be reserved for proofs of God's existence.

Doombreed
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@NTech

However, an atom consists of its nucleus, the electrons, AND the empty space, which collectively form the atom - an actual object.

Even atoms do not "touch with each other". As such, even with your hypothesis, empty space exists in between them. So we still have space where nothing exists.

I am pointing out that the Big Bang was supposed collision of particles, and something had to create those particles, or they would not have been there to make the Big Bang.

Except it wasn't. It was a rapid expansion of the universe as we know it from a very high density and very high temperature state. It was not a collision.

The Big Bang couldn't have existed of itself unless it created the particles of which it was formed before it happened. There can be no "before God" because God is self-existing, so He always was. God is. The Big Bang was.

Like stated above, and like HahiHa said, the cause of the Big Bang hardly seems to be particles.
But even so, You are saying God exists and he set in motion the events which led to the creation of the Universe. So God "did" that. You still haven't provided any convincing argument as to why we can't, in your theory, substitute God doing that with the Big Bang happening instead.

Time is not a dimension because it exerts no power upon objects. Time is an idea. Time does not suffer "alterations" when approaching the speed of light, but it is the speed of which potentials become actualities, that suffers "alterations." Also, nobody has ever traveled at the speed of light, so to say that time suffers "alterations" is a hypothesis, nothing more.

And yet, we don't need to travel at the speed of light, to know certain of the things that happen to time at that speed. Just like we don't need to know how a video showing a perpetual energy device was faked to be certain that it was. Why? because the second law of thermodynamics which is proven by science states that Energy cannot be produced or destroyed, only transferred.

In our case, it's the special theory of Relativity (also proven, by Einstein), which holds that in a nutshell, a moving object measures shorter in its direction of motion as its velocity increases until, at the speed of light, it disappears. It also tells us that moving clocks run more slowly as their velocity increases until, at the speed of light, they stop running altogether.

Thus, one person’s interval of space is not the same as another person’s, and time runs at different rates for different observers travelling at different speeds. To some extent, the faster you go, the slower you age and the slimmer you are! The reason this is not obvious in everyday situations is that the differences at everyday speeds are infinitesimally small, and only really become apparent at speeds approaching that of light itself (“relativistic” speeds). The closer the speed of an objects approaches to the speed of light, the more warped lengths and time intervals become. (source) Do you have counter proof which disproves Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity? Because if not, it is very much proven that this is what happens to time itself at such speeds. Not a hypothesis.

As I pointed out, time is an idea, and it represents the speed of which potentials become actualities. In a black hole, gravity will effect the speed of which particles can travel; it is the particles that are affected, and not the idea of time. Because it takes longer for a
particle to perform a function, that does not mean that the idea of time is altered in any way.
No, it means that gravity exerts a force upon the particle and it consequently affects how fast
the particle can perform a function.

Time is not relative, time always remains the speed at which potentialities become actualities.

And as I pointed out, the notion that time is an idea is not in line with proven laws of physics. Also, not everything in the universe is a particle or made of particles. It's important to note that light for example behaves as a wave under certain circumstances, not as particles. (Off topic, but to provide an example, Quantum physicists are or were at one point in time looking into the theory of Hyperthreads, threads that make up everything, including particles, and existed in fact in as many as 11 dimensions)

I see no sense in this, how can an idea have a size? Time is not relative! Time is a formula.

Time is very much relative and the Special Theory of Relativity proves just that. But if you have a different proven theory, I am sure we'll all be glad to hear that. Time is not an idea.

If you orbit the earth while I stay on earth, your molecules will experience forces that will change the speed of which they function, and your rate of time will differ from mine. Let's say we each had a clock. Your clock will read differently from mine because forces acted upon its molecules, but nevertheless, both clocks have recorded the right amount of time in relation to their location and exterior forces.

Which proves exactly what I say. Time is relative to space, among other things. And not absolute. If it was absolute, it would be the same regardless of the place in space that you occupy, or the speed at which you move, wouldn't it?

If the Big Bang, as the scientists say, was created of particles, we have to ask how the particles were even there in the first place. The theory of the Big Bang requires pre-existant particles, but the theory of God merely requires a self-existant being who always is.

Scientists don't say it was created of particles. Scientists say it was a rapid expansion. Also, it's the same scientists who say that there simply might not have been a "before the Big Bang" which you so adamantly disagree with.

Ntech
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Ntech
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Shepherd

@Doombreed


Even atoms do not "touch with each other". As such, even with your hypothesis, empty space exists in between them. So we still have space where nothing exists.

Simple. That empty space is an object: space.


Except it wasn't. It was a rapid expansion of the universe as we know it from a very high density and very high temperature state. It was not a collision.

What caused the expansion? Quantum fluctuations? If so, what created the environment from which the fluctuations emerged?


But even so, You are saying God exists and he set in motion the events which led to the creation of the Universe. So God "did" that. You still haven't provided any convincing argument as to why we can't, in your theory, substitute God doing that with the Big Bang happening instead.

The reason the Big Bang cannot be substituted for God is because the Big Bang is not self-existing. The Big Bang, according to you, is a Quantum Fluctuation. However, that theorem requires certain forces to be present, which are supposed to be created by the Big Bang, which cannot exist without them. Thus, the Big Bang is NOT self-existing. In addition, the Big Bang requires pre-present matter, which would not have existed.


Thus, one person’s interval of space is not the same as another person’s, and time runs at different rates for different observers travelling at different speeds. To some extent, the faster you go, the slower you age and the slimmer you are!

You are confusing speed and time. Time is absolute. Speed is relative to exterior forces, speed is the time it takes for potentials to turn into realities. If I stand on earth with a clock, and send you up into a black hole with a clock and you come back, each of us would have experienced exactly the same time, but you would have experienced different forces which would cause your clock to move at a different speed. Nevertheless, the time would remain the same.

I do not deny Enstein, but you misunderstand me.


And as I pointed out, the notion that time is an idea is not in line with proven laws of physics. Also, not everything in the universe is a particle or made of particles. It's important to note that light for example behaves as a wave under certain circumstances, not as particles.

Time is an idea, if it is not, then what force does it exert upon me? I call matter 'particles,' but if you want to be precise, I will now call it matter.


Which proves exactly what I say. Time is relative to space, among other things. And not absolute. If it was absolute, it would be the same regardless of the place in space that you occupy, or the speed at which you move, wouldn't it?

Time is absolute. Speed is that which is relative to space, gravity, etc. Time is an idea which humans have thought of to measure speed by. For example, the time it takes for an egg to hatch
depends upon the speed affecting the matter that the egg is made of, the speed affected by all forces internal and external in a given location.


Scientists don't say it was created of particles. Scientists say it was a rapid expansion. Also, it's the same scientists who say that there simply might not have been a "before the Big Bang" which you so adamantly disagree with.

If there was a Big Bang, there would have to be a previous one to create the environment for the Quantum Fluctuations to occur in, and to produce the forces necessary to sustain Fluctuation. Thus, there would have to be a big bang before the Big Bang, one before that, and so forth.

HahiHa
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HahiHa
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Nomad

The reason the Big Bang cannot be substituted for God is because the Big Bang is not self-existing.

It might be, though. How do you know it isn't? You consider the Big Bang as something physical and thus necessarily tied in to conventional physics such as causation. You don't apply this reasoning to God because you don't see God as something physical, but supernatural, magically pre-existing. But you have no proof that such a thing is even possible; or conversely, you have no proof that such a thing can't exist without conscience.
Moegreche
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Moegreche
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Duke

@Ntech
I'm trying to catch up on the conversation and I came across the following claim:

Time is not a dimension because it exerts no power upon objects. Time is an idea. Time does not suffer "alterations" when approaching the speed of light, but it is the speed of which potentials become actualities, that suffers "alterations." Also, nobody has ever traveled at the speed of light, so to say that time suffers "alterations" is a hypothesis, nothing more.

If you're going to introduce new physics, we can't take you seriously. HahiHa (or Doom, I can't remember now) pointed out that the above claim, if true, would falsify Special Relativity (SR). In response, you said that you weren't trying to deny Einstein and that this was just a misunderstanding. That to me suggests that you don't think you're trying to bring in new physics. And that suggests there is going to be a serious disconnect between the understandings of SR that are in play.

The good news is, I don't think you need this claim to support what you're after. In other words, I'm not sure how the claim that time is absolute supports the claim that God exists. If I'm wrong and there is a connection, I would just suggest dropping this line of argumentation.

Personally, I like the line you're currently on. It's incredibly unintuitive (some might argue logically impossible) to have an infinite chain of causes. It also doesn't match up with anything we've observed to claim that something can be the cause of itself (again, some might argue logically impossible).

FishPreferred
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FishPreferred
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Duke

Whatever is moved is moved by something else.
This amoeba moves by moving itself through itself into more of itself.

Unless there is a First Mover, there can be no motions.
No, that presumes that motion is unitary, which is false.

Thus, a First Mover exists. He is God.
1 No.
2 Which one?

The existance of an object of infinate size is impossible.
That's right, because infinite size is not a real property, which is kind of the whole point of what you quoted there.

It is impossible for there to be no God, for if there was no God there would be nothing.
If you're taking a pantheist approach, that's begging the question. Otherwise, it's just incorrect.

For you to deny God's existance, when the proof of Him is all around you, takes a great amount of...blindness.
I'm sure it would. Now try to phrase your ad hominem into something relevant to reality as it is, rather than as you want it to be.

Potentiality is only moved by actuality. I am not denying the power your body can exert to change its surroundings, but pointing out that if you do not exist in actuality, then you have no potential. Without the actuality of an object, it is meaningless and has no potential. Without a mouth, there would be no potential for words.
Something that doesn't exist doesn't have anything. Why are you even bringing potential into this? If I understand your peculiar terminology, you're saying that nonexistent things can't perform any real actions. If I am correct in this assessment, my answer is: So?

I am pointing out that "space" is actual. A vacuum is actual, it is a concept that we can understand.
Vacuum is considerably more than a concept, in that it is a location with a physical absence of matter.

He did not have to be moved by any previous actuality (i.e. He was not created).
Special pleading. By adding a groundless exception, you defeat the purpose of the rule.

He is the only possible explanation for the universe, [...]
He isn't even a decent explanation for anything. Seriously, just saying "God did it" only increases the number of required explanations.

[...] because I have demonstrated that everything happens because of a previous actuality putting that potential into actuality.
No. No, you haven't. You only claimed that, and then contradicted it by making an exception for God.

If I make a sandwich, the sandwich (which used to be a potential) has become an actuality. What has put the universe into actuality? What, if the big bang exists, has put that into actuality?
1 Essentially, "there was not a sandwich, then I prepared a sandwich, then there was a sandwich". So?
2 The event that necessarily preceeded it.

The fact that there is actuality all around us means that there is a first actuality, the one that has made all these potentialities (the world, universe, planets) into actualities.
No, it doesn't. Your argument amounts to this:
1 Everything that exists had to start
2 Anything that starts must be started by something
3 Therefore, everything that exists is started by something (except God)

You keep trying to defend 2, but there is no problem with 2. Your argument fails because 1 is unsupportable and 3 has an illogical exception.

I am not denying the power of the universe to change, but pointing out that something had to make the universe actual, it could not have made itself actual when it was merely a potential.
It never was a potential. It never needed to be made.

Just because an object has a low density does not make it "not there."
As a matter of fact, it does. A low density means there is a high proportion of "not there" to "there".

Actuality is the power to make potentialities actual. I am actual because I can make potentialities actual.
Actuality is the state of being real. It has nothing to do with the actions you are capable of.

Hold on. Something had to make the Big Bang actual, it did not simply happen. What made the environment for the Big Bang actual? The Big Bang was a potentiality until it happened, and if
it was the first actuality, then it would have no actuality to make it happen; hence, the Big Bang would not have happened unless something else existed first. Lets say there was something before the Big Bang that caused it to happen. In that case, there would have to be something before that, and so forth in an infinate loop of (this before this before this...before the big bang). That is not possible: there has to be a self-existant being that started it all. That being is God.
Hold on. Something had to make God actual, He did not simply happen. What made the environment for God actual? God was a potentiality until He happened, and if
He was the first actuality, then He would have no actuality to make Him happen; hence, God would not have happened unless something else existed first. Lets say there was something before God that caused Him to happen. In that case, there would have to be something before that, and so forth in an infinate loop of (this before this before this...before God). That is not possible: there has to be a self-existant being that started it all. That being is ... Snobgobgyz'zaz!

Something had to create the matter of which the Big Bang consisted of. If God does not exist, then the world we live in was created by an infinate loop of big bangs each creating another until one created the universe, and that of course is absurd for something had to trigger that sequence.
Something had to create the matter of which God consisted of. If Snobgobgyz'zaz does not exist, then the world we live in was created by an infinate loop of gods each creating another until one created the universe, and that of course is absurd for something had to trigger that sequence.

I am pointing out that the Big Bang was supposed collision of particles, and something had to create those particles, or they would not have been there to make the Big Bang.
What you are pointing out about the Big Bang is a misconception that has nothing to do with the Big Bang.

However, God does not require anything to happen because he is self-existant.
No, he isn't. That's still special pleading. You need to give a valid reason for Him to be self-existant.

If the Big Bang was the collision of particles, then we have to ask, what put those particles into actuality?
It wasn't. Moving on.

time = speed at which potentialities become actualities
Uh, no. Speed = distance over a span of time. Time can't be the speed of anything.

If the Big Bang, as the scientists say, was created of particles, we have to ask how the particles were even there in the first place.
It wasn't, which, incidentally, is why they don't say that.

[...] but the theory of God merely requires a self-existant being who always is.
God is not a theory, and "self-existant" is utterly meaningless in this context.

Time is an idea, if it is not, then what force does it exert upon me?
What force do the three spacial dimensions exert? Are these just ideas as well?

And, as for what was brought up by @Doombreed
I suppose it would depend on your definition of the term but it has been described as the interior of a sphere, like a dome.
It's more accurately described as the surface of an expanding sphere (or similar closed shape), but that depiction is still misleading because the "sphere" is supposed to be a hypersphere. I don't ascribe to that model, but I wouldn't call it finite either.
lozerfac3
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lozerfac3
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Farmer

Personally, I like the line you're currently on. It's incredibly unintuitive (some might argue logically impossible) to have an infinite chain of causes. It also doesn't match up with anything we've observed to claim that something can be the cause of itself (again, some might argue logically impossible).
I would actually argue for an infinite chain of causes. Time is the key. Time produces cause and effect because a cause always precedes an effect. (Something can only precede another thing within a frame of time.) A cause cannot exist without time and an effect cannot exist without time. Time cannot be an effect because there would be no existing cause before it. Therefore time has always existed and will exist until the end of time. Time has an infinite past which opens up the possibility for an infinite chain of causes. It hurts to think about an infinite chain of causes, so I wouldn't recommend spending too much time on that. However, I would point you to the fact that a cause does not necessarily have to be an effect of another cause. The Big Bang may indeed be the first cause of everything if you assume that.
But then you might be assuming wrong in the same way that you assume that cause precedes effect. In our world, we observe causes coming before effects and we observe that everything has a cause, so these observations are widely accepted as truths (as are many scientific theories). So while it's "incredibly unintuitive", it's completely logical to believe in an infinite chain of causes.
Doombreed
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Doombreed
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@Moegreche

I'm trying to catch up on the conversation

Time came into the discussion like this:

Ntech basically tried to combine causality and determinism, and argued that nothing can happen or exist on its own. Then he issued an exception about God as the first actuality, that started every other actuality in a chain of events. As the chain's start. I pointed out that in his theory, Big Bang could be the first actuality, without changing the theory at all. He argued that the Big Bang had to be put into existence, had to be caused by something, and placed God as the actuality that started it, but I replied that Big Bang might not have been caused by something, in fact time might not have existed before the Big Bang. In a sense, according to this theory, Big Bang has always existed. There is possibly no "before the Big Bang". And that has caused the point of friction in the claim you picked out, he argued that time is an idea, until I brought up the Special Theory of Relativity.

@Ntech

Simple. That empty space is an object: space.

Space is not an object! Space is a concept. An "area" if you'd like. In this case, empty space is an area with no objects.

What caused the expansion? Quantum fluctuations? If so, what created the environment from which the fluctuations emerged?

See, nothing may have created that environment is what I am saying. Nothing may have caused it. I don't get why God can exist without something else causing his existence but the Big Bang cannot still. You make an exception for God because God is a person while the Big Bang is a thing essentially and that creates more problems than it solves. I know it doesn't tie in with your theory of "the Great Chain which has to start somewhere" but in that case, maybe you should try to re-visit said theory, not fervently defend something that we aren't arguing against, while cyclically going back to defending an entirely different aspect of said theory when we bring up the actual flaw.

The reason the Big Bang cannot be substituted for God is because the Big Bang is not self-existing. The Big Bang, according to you, is a Quantum Fluctuation. However, that theorem requires certain forces to be present, which are supposed to be created by the Big Bang, which cannot exist without them. Thus, the Big Bang is NOT self-existing. In addition, the Big Bang requires pre-present matter, which would not have existed.

No, I said that Quantum Fluctuations that may have existed at the start of the Big Bang might have created the conditions for matter to occur afterwards. Therefore, the Big Bang MIGHT exist without those forces, as it is not a Quantum Fluctuation. The Big Bang does not require pre-present matter.

Given as such that physics concludes that the Big Bang may very well BE self existing, why are you so fervently arguing that it can't be, yet make that exception for God?

You are confusing speed and time. Time is absolute. Speed is relative to exterior forces, speed is the time it takes for potentials to turn into realities. If I stand on earth with a clock, and send you up into a black hole with a clock and you come back, each of us would have experienced exactly the same time, but you would have experienced different forces which would cause your clock to move at a different speed. Nevertheless, the time would remain the same.

Wrong. Those forces don't just affect clocks. To add to that example, if I was passing you by at a relativistic speed and had a telescope to look at your position, I would see you like you are frozen. As if time itself had frozen for you. It does not JUST affect moving clothes and it's not just forces. Remember, the whole Theory of Relativity popped as a result of Einstein's rather audacious question:

"How can the speed of light ALWAYS be 300,000 km/sec?" Since we already know a lot of things can affect speed, like obstacles, it can only mean time does suffer alterations in order for the speed of light to always be 300,000 km/sec (it's not the exact amount but the point stands)

The example mentions clocks in order to make it simpler to understand. Like fish said Speed = distance/span of time. So for it to remain the same, despite the distance changing sometimes, time has to flow more slowly.

Imagine you held a contraption made up of 2 mirrors set up facing each other and with a single ray of light in between them and moving from one mirror to the other constantly. If the distance between the 2 mirrors is 1 meter, it would mean light would cover that distance 300 million times in one second. Say you held that contraption that way so there was the top mirror and the bottom mirror (so vertically)

If you started walking while holding that contraption, the distance it would have to travel between each mirror would now be greater. Because it would have to compensate for the horizontal movement of the mirrors as well (think of it like a triangle and Pythagorean's theorem, now it's not a straight line between the mirrors but slightly bent towards the distance you are walking. By the time light hits the mirror at the bottom and goes back for the top mirror, you will have moved forward, no matter how slightly, and made the distance greater). Yet if you counted how many times the ray "touched" one of the mirrors, it would still be 300 million times per second.

If you started running, then you would make the distance even greater (again by the same reasoning, as you move, light now has to cover slightly greater distance between each mirror to compensate for your movement) but you would still count 300 million times per second that the ray touched any mirror.

What does that mean? That light covered a GREATER distance than one meter 300 million times per second. It doesn't matter how greater, only that it did. Only 2 possible explanations exist considering speed = distance/span of time, since the distance increased. Either that the light went faster (which is not possible and it is proven to be impossible) OR, that time flowed differently

Anyway, this was an off topic parenthesis to give you a little insight on how time is not just an idea. Back on topic:

Time is an idea, if it is not, then what force does it exert upon me? I call matter 'particles,' but if you want to be precise, I will now call it matter.

Time is not an idea (see above). I don't get why it would need to exert a force upon you if it is not. Does anything that is not an idea exert a force upon you? if not, why should time?

Time is absolute. Speed is that which is relative to space, gravity, etc. Time is an idea which humans have thought of to measure speed by. For example, the time it takes for an egg to hatch
depends upon the speed affecting the matter that the egg is made of, the speed affected by all forces internal and external in a given location.

And yet Einstein proved that it is the SPEED of light that is absolute. it is the SPEED of Light that is ALWAYS 300 thousand kilometers per second. And for that to happen, it means time is relative instead. And not absolute. As demonstrated above.

If there was a Big Bang, there would have to be a previous one to create the environment for the Quantum Fluctuations to occur in, and to produce the forces necessary to sustain Fluctuation. Thus, there would have to be a big bang before the Big Bang, one before that, and so forth.

No there simply might not have been. They might have simply just occurred. You accept God as spontaneously existing but you can't do that for the Big Bang.

HahiHa
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HahiHa
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Nomad

I would actually argue for an infinite chain of causes. Time is the key. Time produces cause and effect because a cause always precedes an effect. (Something can only precede another thing within a frame of time.) A cause cannot exist without time and an effect cannot exist without time. Time cannot be an effect because there would be no existing cause before it. Therefore time has always existed and will exist until the end of time. Time has an infinite past which opens up the possibility for an infinite chain of causes.

Not necessarily. We have no idea whether time even existed before the Big Bang. It is possible that time began as a result of the Big Bang.
FishPreferred
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FishPreferred
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Duke

If you started walking while holding that contraption, the distance it would have to travel between each mirror would now be greater. Because it would have to compensate for the horizontal movement of the mirrors as well (think of it like a triangle and Pythagorean's theorem, now it's not a straight line between the mirrors but slightly bent towards the distance you are walking.
Not exactly. To someone moving with the mirrors, the light would keep moving straight up and down until the mirrors moved completely out of the way. You would need to be moving with respect to the contraption, so that the combined travel distance from your frame of reference is greater than from the mirrors' frame of reference.

And yet Einstein proved that it is the SPEED of light that is absolute.
Well, after he worked out general relativity, in which the maximum speed of light is invariable, Einstein applied it to some special cases where we would expect that maximum to be exceeded (i.e. special relativity). General relativity was later demonstrated by other people to work anyway, but that maximum limit has not yet been proven.
Moegreche
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@lozerfac3

Well put, and thanks for the explanation. I'm think there might be a serious flaw in the argument you've given, though. I'd like to just quickly dissect the argument in play. I'm going to attempt to put this in premise-conclusion form, just to help me follow it.

A cause cannot exist without time and an effect cannot exist without time.

From this statement and the stuff before, I'm taking this to mean that time is necessary for causation. In other words:
1) If there is a cause, there is time.

Therefore time has always existed and will exist until the end of time.

This statement is just your conclusion:
C) Time has always existed.

So, how do we get from (1) to the conclusion? Well, we need the following premise:
2) Causes have always existed.

In other words, we need the claim that there have been an infinite chain of causes. But this is the claim you're arguing for--that an infinite chain of causes is possible. Since the argument begs the question, I'm not convinced.

As for the general worries about special pleading in the whole Big Bang discussion:

I feel like the special pleading fallacy doesn't apply when the 'pleading' that's being done *is* for something special. Right, we could make sense of having a kind of double standard if there are, in fact, special circumstances in play. In this case, the 'specialness' of a universe-creating being would be more than sufficient to warrant a distinction. In other words, what makes God so special? He's God, duh!

Doombreed
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Not exactly. To someone moving with the mirrors, the light would keep moving straight up and down until the mirrors moved completely out of the way. You would need to be moving with respect to the contraption, so that the combined travel distance from your frame of reference is greater than from the mirrors' frame of reference.

Fine, assume you also rotate the contraption slightly forward as you walk. I think that would work if I get what you are saying

Well, after he worked out general relativity, in which the maximum speed of light is invariable, Einstein applied it to some special cases where we would expect that maximum to be exceeded (i.e. special relativity). General relativity was later demonstrated by other people to work anyway, but that maximum limit has not yet been proven.

I mean, it works empirically, but if Ntech can bring up a case in which it doesn't, then by all means.

lozerfac3
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lozerfac3
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Farmer

1) If there is a cause, there is time.
C) Time has always existed.
So, how do we get from (1) to the conclusion? Well, we need the following premise:
2) Causes have always existed.
We only need premise (2) if time can only exist if a cause has existed. We do not need the claim that there have been an infinite chain of causes to validate the conclusion. I came to the conclusion that time has always existed because nothing would be able to cause it since time has not existed before time existed.
Moegreche
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Moegreche
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Duke

@lozerfac3 - I see. I misunderstood the argument. Sorry about that.

We have a slightly different problem now, though. Your conclusion is that time has always existed. But it doesn't follow from that, that there can be an infinite chain of causes. I totally agree that, in order for there to be an infinite chain of causes, there must be an infinite span of time going back. In other words, we have this claim:

(1) If there is an infinite chain of causes, time must have always existed.

Since nothing can cause time, that would support:
(2) Time must have always existed.

But this doesn't get you:
(C) Therefore, there is an infinite chain of causes.

The above is an invalid argument--it affirms the consequent.

In short, we still can't get the conclusion that an infinite chain of causes is possible.

lozerfac3
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lozerfac3
978 posts
Farmer

@Moegreche I understand that. I didn't make the conclusion that there was an infinite chain of causes, but only that it's not illogical to think that it's possible. Haha that was miscommunication on my part. My fault.

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