Re: [asa] David S Wilson

From: Merv <>
Date: Wed May 09 2007 - 19:20:36 EDT

Alexanian, Moorad wrote:
> I wonder how an atheist would answer the following question, how come existence.
> Moorad
Not being an atheist, I will yet presume to reply: They would say:
it's a pointless question. We're obviously here. You might as well
ask: why gravity? Well we may not know why -- even if Einstein helped
us picture it differently (as curvature of space) we still can't fill in
the fundamental "why". But meanwhile it's there, so we observe its
faithful effect to the point of predicting, knowing, and quantifying
that effect. We don't declare wide-eyed that attraction over a distance
looks like magic and proves the direct hand of God. But if you want to
persist in your question, then atheists would probably resort to the
*possibility* of multiverses, or infinitely branching universes in
which, of course, we will only be here to ask the question in the one
universe that happens by random chance (warfare translation:
"meaningless") to produce us. We Christians may call this silly
conjecture. They call our God a silly conjecture. But even for all
this fringe science so far removed from any evidence (let alone proof),
none of it begins to touch on the notion of meaning, purpose, values,
etc. So even their frantic imposition of probabilities & randomness to
such an extreme periphery of science as multiple universes still fails
to reach the questions even farther out yet: meaning, purpose,
objective values, etc. Hence they have only one recourse. Deny that
such things exist, except as we make them up. If science has in its
domain all that there is, then there can't be any of these "bigger"
questions outside of it. So they define the world the way they want it
to be. Which lands them squarely where the Christians already are: on
a foundation of faith -- just faith in a different set of things.

For all this, though, Moorad, I do, in the end agree with you. For me
personally, the fact of any existence at all (whether one universe or
many) is one of the more objective reasons to postulate a timeless
agency outside of it. There are answers to that, of course. And
neither side compels their determined opponents.

Here's another question --- we could have a contest: what would the
best comeback line be to the gentleman who told Napoleon, "Sir, I have
no need of that hypothesis." [referring to God] What about this:
"well, I do. And actually, you do too even if you haven't realized it
yet." This doesn't address the speaker's challenge in the same
"Occam's razor" spirit in which it is issued, but it does nudge the
speaker to think that not everyone accepts, as he apparently does, that
the world of objective explanation is the totality of existence.


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Received on Wed May 9 19:15:48 2007

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