God Evidences


This discussion took place on Channel 4:

"Logical Proofs for God"

October 2008

The Carpenter said:

Are there any?

More specifically, are there any that don't collapse the moment that you apply the logic used to establish that God exists to the God that's just been created?

E.g. The Cosmological Argument:

1 - Everything has a cause.
2 - Nothing can cause itself.
3 - A causal chain cannot be of infinite length.
4 - Therefore, a First Cause (or something that is not an effect) must exist (i.e. god).

(For the purposes of this discusion, I'll leave aside point 3) The conclusion draw in 4 directly contradicts 1&2, if everything must have a cause, then god must have a cause (otherwise not everything must have a cause).

Firstly, the idea that there are only 2 alternatives is bizarre, every culture ever discovered has had some myth or other about how the universe came into being.
Secondly, logic pays no attention whatsoever to whether the universe even exists. All it does is set out a rational framework in which we can examine whether an argument is coherent.
Thirdly, I was using the Cosmological Argument as an example of one of the proofs for God and showing how it trips over itself.
Fourthly, there are other similar proofs, all of which, in my experience, trip over themselves in one way or another.
Fifthly, of your list of "three illogical or vanishingly unlikely steps" none are illogical (& none of them are vanishingly unlikely, unless you're looking through the wrong end of your telescope again, but I was specifically asking about logical proofs).

So, does anyone know of any logical proofs that don't fall into this trap?

Omrow said:

Sorry Mr Carpenter.

Muslims do not claim that EVERYTHING has a cause.

Like top scientists, Holy Qoran also claims that everything INSIDE the Universe has a cause.

God is OUTSIDE the Universe.

Therefore, God is Causeless.

So, the real argument is this:

1. Everything in the Universe has a cause.

2. Therefore, Universe as a whole has a cause.

3. The Supreme Being is the cause of the Universe.

Greenjack said:

who says there is an "outside" the universe.
It could be the case that everything is inside the universe & god (certainly as the current religions portray him/her) simply does not exist.

Omrow said:

I would have thought it was simple logic for most people to understand.

1. Everything we know inside the Universe has a cause.

2. The cause of the all things in the Universe is outside the Universe.

3. Supreme Being is the Cause of the Universe.

Greenjack said:

your missing the point Omrow (& still not answered my post above). It would only be logical if you could actually prove that there is an "outside the universe", and that there is a supreme being.

The Carpenter said:

Somehow, you don’t quite get it do you Omrow? I mean, bless you for trying & everything, but really?

Well okay, lets start with my original question. – Are there are logical proofs for God that do not end up with the initial principles contradicting the final conclusion (see original example I gave)?

You see, logic works on the basis that you make an initial statement (or two or three) clearly outline your argument, then draw a conclusion.
1 - Statement 1 – 1,2 & 3 are all distinct numbers
2 - Statement 2 – 1+1=2
3 - Argument (blah blah, whatever (probably divide something by 0))
4 - Conclusion – 1+1=3
Without having the slightest idea of what 1, 2 & 3 are (nor what the argument is) we can tell that either Statement 1 is wrong or statement 2 is wrong or that the conclusion is wrong. Either statement 1 is wrong (if 1+1=2=3 then 2 & 3 are not distinct); Statement 2 is wrong (& 1+1=/=2, but may =3); or the conclusion is wrong (& 1+1=/=3).
The important thing is that the argument should build on the initial statements and the conclusions drawn should be consistent with the statements.

I’ve re-numbered the points below, as they seem to fit together a bit better (feel free to disagree).


1 God is OUTSIDE the Universe. – A statement

2 Therefore, God is Causeless. – A,...conclusion??

So, the real argument is this:

3. Everything in the Universe has a cause. – A statement
24. Therefore, Universe as a whole has a cause. – - A conclusion?
5. The Supreme Being is the cause of the Universe. - A conclusion ]

Firstly, we appear to have 2 statements & 3 conclusions and I’m struggling to link any of them together into a coherent argument.

(1) – Logically, a can be outside b, so I’ll take this as a statement (but see below)
(2) – From statements 1 & 3 (& by inference) we can conclude that anything outside the universe can exist without a cause, there is no reason to assume that God is (or isn’t) one of those things. “Outside the universe” could consist entirely of uncaused pink thimbles.
(3) I’m prepared to work with (3), on a logical basis (if you want I’ll point out the empirical flaws in it, let me know).
(4) There is no logical reason to assume that because things inside something have a cause the thing itself must have a cause (if I told you I had a bag of blue balls & asked what colour the bag was, what would your answer be?)
(5) Firstly, there is no logical reason to call this “cause” The Supreme Being, or God, nor anything else. Secondly, you’ve not established any reason why the universe should only have one cause
Finally, even if you were going to fill in the gaps between these statements & conclusions (ideally with an argument), you’d have established, at best, a non-interventionist (deistic) God. The moment God starts performing miracles/ contacting people within the universe, you would have a non-caused thing inside the universe, which contradicts (3).


1. Everything we know inside the Universe has a cause.
- An empirical statement (see earlier post re flaws, or read something on quantum physics)
2. The cause of the all things in the Universe is outside the Universe.Another statement (so how does that work then?)

3. Supreme Being is the Cause of the Universe.A 3rd statement. Neither statement 1 nor 2 makes any claim about the universe having a cause. (Could be rephrased as ‘the Supreme Being is the cause of all the things inside the universe’ maybe?) ]

Could you fill in some of the gaps for me Omrow?

1 – We appear to be breaking ‘things’ down into caused things and uncaused things with only caused things existing in the universe. You’ve offered no definition on whether caused things can exist outside the universe as well, so either ‘the universe’ is a set consisting of everything that has a cause, or it is a subset of some of the caused things (with other caused things existing ‘outside the universe’). I’ll work on the assumption that you mean the former, feel free to correct me.

2 – Logically, there’s no reason to assume that the causes of the things in the universe were earlier things in the universe (& the cause of those things was earlier things ad infinitum). Could you offer a reason why the uncaused things must cause the caused things?

3 – You seem to keep wanting to refer to one Supreme Being, are you stating that there is only one uncaused thing? If so, what reason do you have to suggest this given so far all we’ve done is subdivide ‘everything’ into ‘caused things’ and ‘uncaused things’?

Omrow said:

Why do you insists on deliberately complicating things that are infact quite simple.

I will again say it as clearly as I can:

Physicists tell us that Universe did have a beginning. It is not eternal.


If everything "inside" the Universe has a cause, then the cause of the "entire" Universe cannot be inside the Universe. That cause has to be "outside" the Universe. Therefore, an "external force" is the cause of this Universe.

You may call that external force whatever you like. Why not call it a Supreme Being?

I can't make it any simpler than that.

Greenjack said:

[you said, quote: Physicists tell us that Universe did have a beginning. It is not eternal.]

I think we have to define "universe" here.
Do you mean the contents of the universe, i.e. planets ,
stars etc or the universe itself?
The physicists may be refering to the former.
Plus don't forget , they don't know for sure. It all theoretical.


[quote: If everything "inside" the Universe has a cause, then the cause of the "entire" Universe cannot be inside the Universe.]

Why not?

Just because you can't comprehend it.

[quote: That cause has to be "outside" the Universe.]

If there is an "outside". Then we have to ask what is outside the outside?

[quote: Therefore, "external force" is the cause of this Universe.]

Not necessarily. Nature is within the universe and is a creative force.

[quote: You may call that external force whatever you like. Why not a Supreme Being?]

Because it suggests an intelligent being rather than a force. Nature is far more feasible IMHO

The Carpenter said:

the question I originally asked was about logical proofs for God (that don’t fall into the trap of contradicting themselves), so what “physicists tell us” is a bit off track, but since no one seems to have a proof to put forward, we’ll look at this anyway.

[quote: "I will again say it as clearly as I can: Physicists tell us that Universe did have a beginning. It is not eternal."]

Physicists do indeed tell us that the Universe had a beginning. But just because something has a beginning, it doesn’t make it eternal. In fact, as one of the most common answers physicists will give to the question “What was there before the big bang?” is that time was created during the big bang and therefore there was no “before the big bang”.

Equally, physicists are currently unable to tell us whether the universe will have an end (this depends on the amount of matter (/ dark matter) and energy (/ dark energy) knocking around and whether gravity (/dark gravity) will cause the universe to eventually collapse back in on itself or continue expanding forever.

In the first instance then the universe would be eternal, but with a beginning, in the 2nd, if it was established that time would stop during “the big crunch”, then the universe would still encompass all of time, which sounds as close to a definition of eternity as any.

If everything "inside" the Universe has a cause, then the cause of the "entire" Universe cannot be inside the Universe. That cause has to be "outside" the Universe. Therefore, "external force" is the cause of this Universe.]

So, in that case you need to establish that the universe hasn’t caused the things inside itself and that there is an “outside” of the universe.

I’ll give you a straight forward (i.e. 3D) example. We know that the earth is finite, therefore a finite thing must have an end (/edge). If we were to start walking across the earth looking for the edge when would we find it?
We all know we won’t, because the earth is round, now the universe could be a similar 4D (or more) shape, it could have no “end/ edge” or “inside/ outside” and yet also be finite. A quick search should find you mathematical models of mobius bottles to illustrate the point.

Assuming that you can establish there is an “outside” to the universe (a big assumption, I know), you still need to establish that this “external force” is both singular and intelligent/ moral (strictly speaking the latter is only necessary if you’re arguing from a theistic point of view rather than a deistic view).

[quote: "You may call that external force whatever you like. Why not a Supreme Being?"]

Why not call it the big bang? Why not call it uncaused pink thimbles?

Might I suggest the reason you want to call it/ them “a Supreme Being” is so you can use it to try and pretend you’re deriving some sort of morality from it/ them? And unless or until you can establish that there is one thing, that it is in anyway a “being” much less an intelligent/ moral being you have no logical justification for doing so?

Gand said:

Why does the creator have to be a god or a supreme being, couldn’t it be really stupid, say with the IQ of a chicken but with a natural propensity for universe creation.

Omrow said:

That would be true if only your type existed.

Unfortunately for you, the existence of intelligent people prove your dream wrong.

The Carpenters said:

Actually, Omrow, I'm pretty sure you'll find that chickens do exist.

Omrow said:

Yes indeed.

The existence of a "chicken" and an "ass" only goes to show
that if there is a God, He certainly has wit.

The Carpenter said:

..or possibly just the "ass" of a "chicken"?

But I was hoping to discuss something a bit more fundament-al.

Omrow said:

There is actually nothing wrong with the intellectual arguments for the existence of God.

Their logic is quite sound.

However, they are not enough to take you to God.

The Carpenter said:

There's plenty wrong with them. Want to demonstrate the errors in another? Take your pick...

Omrow said:

When U.S. did not want peace, it saw everything wrong with the diplomatic method.
Hence, Bush and Tony Blair illgeally invaded Iraq in 2003.

Similarly, when a person is not interested in God, then, naturally, he, like Tony Blair, would find everything wrong with pro-God stuff.

You dont have to be Einstein to see that.

The Carpenter said:

The only way humanity has ever advanced is be finding out what is wrong with the current explanations, then correcting them or replacing them.

If you can find me a logically coherent argument for God, I'll look at it seriously.

Channel 4 moderator, Chairman Al said:

why do we stop at the creator?

Isn't it rather simplistic to assume that there is a creator and beyond that nothing?

Surely if you believe in the concept of creation then you can't ignore the fact that even a creator has to be created.

God is a human concept and humans cannot cope with too many variables. Religion can only survive by keeping their concepts simple!

Omrow said:

One has to draw the line somewhere.
I think it should drawn at the most logical position.

However, good attempt by our chairman. But still flawed.

I can easily turn his "chair" around:

If you believe in the concept of an eternal universe, you should have no problem with the eternal God.

Merry Christmas!

The Carpenter said:

Agreed, now demonstrate that the most logical position to draw the line is after you reach God, rather than;
1 - the creator of God
2 - the universe causing itself

... and you might have a point.

Channel 4 moderator Chairman Al said:

How was the eternal universe created? - the theory that it has always existed is purely a cop out to satisfy the limitations of the human mind. Religion is a gap filler for the paucity of human comprehension.

Merry Mithras.

Sanj Singh said:

It is imperative for us not to argue for the sake of argument or to force our views upon one another. It is important to learn from each other and be TOLERANT.

Chairman Al said:

It is important not to have fixed views on the answer to the universe. Nothing can be achieved without a willingness to accept new learning.

Sanj Singh said:

Indeed, that point can be made to religious fanatics but sometimes we forget that even some Atheists too can be so fanatical when it comes to listening to anything oppossing their views.

jazzermonty said:

As an Atheist my problem is religious dogma. Atheism has no concept of dogma, only evidence (something organised religion has no concept of).

The Carpenter said:

I don't have the slightest problem listening to people opposed to my views, all I ask for is that the facts are clear and the reasoning sound.

That so many religious people (though not all) insist on providing neither clear facts nor sound reasoning is their problem & not mine.

P.S. My preferred spelling of argument is d.e.b.a.t.e.

Omrow said:

Fanatics exists in all spheres of life.

If you look carefully you will see that Atheists tend to be more dogmatic than religious people.

In fact, you will observe that most Atheists follow a blind faith.

Atheists are as bad as any other intellectually blind person. They often refuse to use reason.

The Carpenter said:

So Omrow, what is your answer to the question "What would convince you that you were wrong and that God doesn't exist?"

(If you can refrain from implying that anyone who disagrees with you is stupid, I'll tell you my answer to the question "What would convince you that you were wrong and that God doesn't exist?")

Omrow said:

There is no "rational" evidence against God.

The so-called arguments against God are ones that are made by unthinking Atheists who are deluded by their hatred of anything that they cannot yet comprehend.

If you listen properly, you will no doubt notice that all the statements made by most Atheists about God are actually outside the realm of human intellect.

If there was any "reasonable" evidence against God, Atheist "lords" like Richard Dawkins would not make fool of themselves by claiming, on one hand, that believers are deluded, while on the other hand, the same idiot admits that he cannot rule out the existence of God.

That is human irrationality at its most entertaining.

When Professor Dawkins says there MAY possibly be a God out there, then how on earth can he condemn those who say that there IS a God.

The Carpenter said:

Because his mind is open to the (vanishingly small) chance that there is a god, while yours is completely and utterly closed to the idea that there isn't.

What would convince you that there wasn't a god, Omrow?

Mycor said:

As has been said many times, you cannot disprove the existence of anything because you cannot look everywhere and no matter where you look there may be evidence somewhere where you haven't looked. All you can do is look in as many places as possible and if you find no evidence for something you conclude that on balance the likelihood of something existing is so small as to be considered negligible. On balance therefore you conclude that something doesn't exist but you leave open the tiny possibility that it may. That is logical and rational not silly, stupid, unthinking or any of the other such words that you choose to use.

Can you explain why it is logical to believe in a god, rather than just repeating it. Can you give us some of the evidence? Can you give an example of what you mean by 'If you listen properly, you will no doubt notice that all the statements made by most Atheists about God are actually outside the realm of human intellect'?

Omrow said:

That was good. I agree with you there.

But, I think you missed my point.

It is indeed reasonable to claim that there is probably no God.

Nothing wrong with that.

My point was about condemnnation.

jazzermonty said:

[ quote: There is no "rational" evidence against God. The so-called arguments against God are ones that are made by unthinking Atheists who are deluded by their hatred of anything that they cannot yet comprehend.]

Your getting this the wrong way round Omrow, it should read ..

There is no “rational” evidence FOR God.

Do you see the subtle difference here? Science isn't trying to disprove the existence of God, but can find no evidence for God.

Atheists aren't deluded by any manner of means. In fact their concious is heightened by the fact that God hides his face. Or more to the point God doesn't have a face.

And how's deluded here? Someone that can make a rational decision about their belief system, or someone who blindly follows their inherited doctrine?

Where did you find your religion Omrow?

Omrow said:

Place where any truth is found.

jazzermonty said:

Do you believe in the same scriptures as your parents?

Omrow said:

No I dont. I have my own brain.

Mycor said:

So you agree that it is reasonable to claim that there is probably no god. I also think we agreed that the Qur'an is open to interpretation, but you felt that one interpretation was more logical and reasonable than the others ie. that it is the word of Allah. Would you agree that you think this interpretation is logical and reasonable to you because you beieve in Allah, but to some one who reasonably claims that there is probably no god the interpretation that the Quran is the word of Allah is not logical and reasonable? You may disagree with them but do you agree that it is a reasonable view to hold?

Omrow said:

Yes. That would be rational.

I agree with you.

We all stand at different places. This gives us varying perspectives of the object we are studying.

There are indeed rational people who do not believe in God and they have read holy books such as the Qoran.

They say that there is only one thing wrong with Qoran: That is its claim to be from God.

Thats ok.

Those who do not yet believe in God, would, naturally, not believe any book claiming to be from God.

Even those who do believe in God may still reasonablly not believe that a particular book is indeed from God.

Thats all fine and reasonable.

jazzermonty said:

Now that were all friends again, are there any 'Logical Proofs for God'?

I say no, as God is neither

Omrow said:

God is too big for scientists.

Their tiny instruments are not enough to measure the Supreme Being.

You dont have to be an expert to figure that out.

The Carpenter said:

For some strange reason you've omitted those who used to believe in God & don't anymore. Fine & reasonable?

Omrow said:

I've never come across those.

Mycor said:

so you feel that people who do not believe in god can be rational, that it is reasonable for some one to think there is probably not a god and that it is reasonable for some one to think that the Qur'an is not the word of god.

Based on this I am trying to understand why you continue to call atheists silly, irrational and so on. My guess is it's to do with how you are defining atheism. Is it because you mean an atheist states that there is definitely no god, and believes there isn't one, even though, as we have discussed, it is not really possible to prove the non-existence of something?

If this is the case though, surely such people or only doing the same as you ie. they believe something to be true although it cannot be proven. I could understand therefore why you would say that such people are mistaken or wrong in your opinion, but to accuse them of being silly, irrational etc doesn't seem right. This works both ways of course, and shouldn't stop a discussion or debate on the subject but a think a more understanding language would help and would maybe avoid some of the confusion or misunderstandings which can arise.

Omrow said:

That was beautiful. I couldn't agree with you more.

Believers and Atheists can be both rational as well as irrational.

Its just the case that Athiests tend to be absurd more often in their beliefs and claims.

Any person can hold both rational and irrational beliefs.

Thats the beauty of human beings. If we all belived the same there would be no colour to life.

The Carpenter said:

Strictly something can be logical and not measurable or predictable, as these are more "scientific" traits than logical traits. Therefore, a god that is not testable/ measurable/predictable is not a scientific god.

So, on the evidence currently to hand that makes God neither scientific, nor logical, which is exactly the sort of attributes most imaginary beings have.

jazzermonty said:

Try goolging 'Logical proof's for God' and you will be amazed at what's out there.

Omrow said:

Scientifially speaking, for something to be a "proof", it needs to be quite solid.

The so-called "Logical Proofs" are not actually proofs for God's existence.

At best they are pointers.

+ +

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