RE: [asa] Musing on entropy, chaos, and omniscience

From: Alexanian, Moorad <alexanian@uncw.edu>
Date: Mon May 25 2009 - 12:36:48 EDT

Surely, the issue of violations of conservation laws would not come to the fore if the cosmic background radiation did not force scientists to consider the creation of the universe--Of course, many are trying to avoid such logical conclusion by constructing theories where there is no singularity. Recall that even Sir Arthur Eddington, which I think may have been a Christian, found the notion of a beginning abhorrent to science. Therefore, once created, I think conservation laws ought to exist. Can you imagine a universe without conservation laws? I can't.

Moorad

-----Original Message-----
From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On Behalf Of Jim Armstrong
Sent: Monday, May 25, 2009 12:21 PM
To: ASA
Subject: Re: [asa] Musing on entropy, chaos, and omniscience

Re the first para - I don't see how this would necessarily be any
violation. If Creation was "not" a "moment before" Creation, then all
that is required is that Creation is "seeded" with something transformed
from another plane of reality (in which God is a "resident"), a plane
other than our space-time, energy/matter constrained existence which a
moment ago didn't exist. But presumeably, God did exist. Ex-nihilo is
our construct, bearing the implication that our existence is the only
existence. Don't we hope that's not the case? Moreover, in Jewish
thought (as I understand it), Creation was more an organization and
shaping (and naming) event (from non empty-set "chaos") than literally
ex-nihilo.

JimA [Friend of ASA]

Merv Bitikofer wrote:
> Indeed! and that any creation (or beginning point) ex-nihilo would be
> a violation of just about every law of conservation would seem to be
> the elephant in the room here. These philosophies take aim at a god
> that very few, if any, Christians ever claim.
>
> I also thought a recent public radio interview bordered on the
> ridiculous. The findings of some researchers were discussed that were
> purporting to show some correlation between prayer and the health of
> the pray-er. No biggie here --and it wasn't for them either; they
> were happy to concede the mechanism of mind-body links or the power of
> positive thinking. But then it got more dicey around the question of
> the effects of the prayer *on others*. Some had apparently researched
> and concluded that if the pray-er was personally close to the
> prayer-recipient, that there still was a positive correlation through
> some entirely unknown mechanism (they actually speculated about
> string-theory or quantum connections & such). But on prayer for the
> health recovery of a complete stranger ---here the conclusions were
> "clear": NO correlation (or in some cases people even got worse
> --which would seem to contradict the preceding conclusion and
> everything else they said, suggesting faulty research.) And their
> reasoning was straightforward on this: there could be no possible
> mechanism for such prayer to work. Which again, if they were taking
> aim at Christian spirituality (what else motivates such "studies" here
> in the west), then they missed the elephant in the room --and that is
> that Christians don't generally direct their prayers to or at the
> person in need. Prayers go to God (or maybe some saint). And God
> presumably may or may not grant the request. In which case no
> Christian would expect a causal mechanism to be found --and even the
> lack of correlation of results when praying for strangers would
> probably only be marginally troubling for some Christians. Others
> here have already pointed out the trouble with "putting God to the
> test".
> I really liked the exchange in "Bruce Almighty" in which God
> personally asks the protagonist what he wants: to which the Jim Carey
> character, after some serious and sanctimonious thought replies:
> peace on earth. And God replied: that's a great prayer .........
> if you're Ms. America. Now tell me what you REALLY want. Then the
> protagonist gives a more heart-felt plea regarding his own girl-friend
> situation, and God replies to the effect ----- now THAT'S a prayer.
>
> --Merv
> p.s. another profound line in that movie ran something like this:
> Jim Carey (who is allowed to play God for a day in a big city) asks
> the real God: "How can I make my girlfriend love me if I'm not
> allowed to violate her freewill in any way?"
>
> To which God replies: "If you figure that one out, then please tell
> me --I would really like to know."
>
>
> dfsiemensjr wrote:
>> The problem noted parallels one from Jaegwon Kim, a philosopher, who
>> argued that there cannot be a God because he would have to interact with
>> the world and it would show up in mass-energy calculations. The guy did
>> not realize that a Creator, not being physical, would not be bound by
>> physical restrictions.
>>
>> This leads me to a couple questions: Would Kim's argument not run afoul
>> of the mass-energy needs of the Big Bang? How would the perpetual need
>> for more energy for new universes impact the multiverse notion?
>> Dave (ASA)
>>
>>
>
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Received on Mon May 25 12:36:32 2009

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