Re: [asa] Varient of cosmological argument?

From: Ted Davis <>
Date: Thu Sep 17 2009 - 14:44:50 EDT


I comment & offer answers to your questions below.


>>> "Dehler, Bernie" <> 9/17/2009 11:34 AM >>>
A question on the arguments for God...

I think the cosmological argument is related to the "why is there something instead of nothing" question and the new question "Why is there not everything instead of something" question related to multiverses.

But I think there may be another good argument for God, that seems related to the cosmological argument and the ontological argument. Is this a new idea or does it go by an existing name?

The argument goes like this:

Consider the thoughtful self-aware human and his consciousness. If there is no God, it means nature created objects that would emerge a conscience, contemplate themselves and everything else, then the consciousness would dissipate back into nothingness. Doesn't that seem so highly unlikely, given how precious this gift of self-awareness and the gift of consciousness is?

It sounds like it is related to the design argument. Look how complex we are. But it goes beyond that into appreciating and spelling-out how precious the gift of consciousness is. This gift is so precious, that if one doesn't believe in God, it can strike a great depression (maybe even a panic attack) into a person (contemplating no eternal life)... at least on first glance. On deeper philosophical thinking, there may be a way to deal with death positively without God (not sure yet). It almost seems like it should be called 'the ontological argument' (questioning who/what am I) but that already exists, referring to something else (God's being).

Feedback? This seems like a powerful argument for me, and I can't believe it is my unique idea.

I've been thinking a lot more lately about consciousness because of the last ASA conference topics on it.


TED: Part of the argument here is about the preciousness of life and consciousness, obtained at great cost in evolutionary history. Why would that all be for nothing? This is very close, Bernie, to an argument that A H Compton gave for eternal life. I will lay that out in the final installment of my 3-part article on Compton, in the December issue of PSCF. Stay tuned. I cannot say whether this argument has a specific name, however. If you want to see it before then, go read the chapter on immortality in his 1935 book, "The Freedom of Man." The book is readily obtained from college or universities libraries.

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Received on Thu Sep 17 14:47:35 2009

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