Proof of God

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
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jerlands
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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 7th, 2018, 1:52 pm

Philosch wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:20 am
We seem to be going around in circles a bit, I know where Spectrum stands on the existence of god, and although I am an atheist myself and do not believe such a being exists either, I am an igtheist which is a person who is absolutely certain of one thing, namely that the existence of any kind of transcendent super being/creator can neither be proven or disproven by definition. I think the igtheist position is the most rigorously supported by philosophy in general. I'm not clear where you stand jerlands? Do you believe in any version of the god myth or are you a rational person? When people claim to be agnostic I count them as ether "on the fence" believers or as atheists who are cowards and won't let go of their primitive heritage.

As to your post about the self, Joseph Campbell had a line in the "Power of Myth" where he says "heaven and hell and all the gods are within us". He was clearly speaking metaphorically of course but it's still a very powerful psychological statement
Yes, I'm a rational person who believes in God.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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jerlands
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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 7th, 2018, 2:20 pm

Philosch wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:32 am
To Spectrum:

I don't subscribe to the notion that perfection is the appropriate defining characteristic of the concept of god across all related mythology. I think the qualifying characteristic that defines a god across most mythology is "transcendence" in relation to the physical universe. You can immediately see this leads directly to the igtheist position. Something that is transcendent in relation to the physical universe/creation would necessarily be unknowable. This logic is almost enough to disprove god's existence but not quite. The best one can say is you couldn't have any knowledge of such an entity as you are completely bounded by the physical universe. This is why and how dualist can hang on to the notion of god because they believe "spirit" human or otherwise, is also transcendent of the physical universe and you and I of course know this is irrational.
Transcendence is a bit obscure in meaning because it's root (trans) implies "to climb" (which is what man does) but we use it as beyond normal bounds. To learn about the Biblical God you really need to read and understand the original text but I think we can find origins and get a gist of what everything is about. I'm not certain God isn't an evolutionary being and creation a means for the creator to act in. Egypt has notions of uncovering the lie, establishing truth as a means to order and the maintenance of universal harmony. But Egypt is still very much a mystery and from what I see it was a dimension unlike what we experience today.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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jerlands
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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 7th, 2018, 2:48 pm

I just re-read my post and umm, the root of transcendence is scendence -> to climb :) to climb beyond...
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Spectrum » March 7th, 2018, 9:02 pm

Philosch wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:32 am
To Spectrum:

I don't subscribe to the notion that perfection is the appropriate defining characteristic of the concept of god across all related mythology. I think the qualifying characteristic that defines a god across most mythology is "transcendence" in relation to the physical universe. You can immediately see this leads directly to the igtheist position. Something that is transcendent in relation to the physical universe/creation would necessarily be unknowable. This logic is almost enough to disprove god's existence but not quite. The best one can say is you couldn't have any knowledge of such an entity as you are completely bounded by the physical universe. This is why and how dualist can hang on to the notion of god because they believe "spirit" human or otherwise, is also transcendent of the physical universe and you and I of course know this is irrational.
Anything supernatural is "transcendence" i.e. beyond [transcend] the natural where God is merely one idea of the many ideas of transcendental thoughts. Thus 'transcendence' is too common a word to distinguish God from others.

Btw, what I have ascribed to God is 'absolute perfection' not just perfection. The critical word is 'absolute' i.e. absolutely absolute - Absolute.
Absolute (philosophy)
In philosophy, the concept of the Absolute is closely related to that of God in monotheism, albeit not necessarily referring to a personal deity. The term was not in use in ancient or medieval philosophy, but closely related to the description of God as "Pure Actuality" (Actus Purus) in scholasticism. -wiki


Absolute = totally unconditional.

I have done extensive research on the evolution of the idea of God and the most distinct quality one can ascribe [philosophically] to God is 'absolute perfection' of the ontological God than which no greater can exists.

Note:
Kant argued and demonstrated ALL proofs of God is reducible to the Ontological Argument.
In his CPR Kant also argued, it is Impossible to prove the existence of God.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Spectrum » March 7th, 2018, 9:18 pm

jerlands wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 8:16 am
The question is if the notion of God fits within the confines of "empirical-rational reality?" (I believe we've already agreed upon Actus Purus in that God created the world complete and thus fulfilled your second premise.)
So we've also agreed empirical is through observation and rational is the expression of that observation... correct?
So since observation comes from man then we are also looking for some expression of that observation from another man correct?
Tell me if I'm correct in my assumptions or correct me if I'm not.
.
No, the 'notion of God' do NOT fit within the "empirical-rational reality".
Note I prefer 'idea'[philosophical] rather than 'notion'
It is like the notion of an apple in your mind is not the real apple within the "empirical-rational reality" which can be touched, seen, smelled, felt physically and eaten.

Note;
Notion of apple = corresponding real empirical apple.
Notion of gravity = justified true belief, i.e. testable, repeatable, real.
Notion of God = correspond to what??? - nothing real!

My point with 'Actus Purus' is critically that God is an "absolute perfection" in whatever actions God expressed - created the World, Universe, & whatever.
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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 7th, 2018, 9:59 pm

Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 9:18 pm
jerlands wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 8:16 am
The question is if the notion of God fits within the confines of "empirical-rational reality?" (I believe we've already agreed upon Actus Purus in that God created the world complete and thus fulfilled your second premise.)
So we've also agreed empirical is through observation and rational is the expression of that observation... correct?
So since observation comes from man then we are also looking for some expression of that observation from another man correct?
Tell me if I'm correct in my assumptions or correct me if I'm not.
.
No, the 'notion of God' do NOT fit within the "empirical-rational reality".
Note I prefer 'idea'[philosophical] rather than 'notion'
It is like the notion of an apple in your mind is not the real apple within the "empirical-rational reality" which can be touched, seen, smelled, felt physically and eaten.

Note;
Notion of apple = corresponding real empirical apple.
Notion of gravity = justified true belief, i.e. testable, repeatable, real.
Notion of God = correspond to what??? - nothing real!
Let's get our terms right.. Notion is a conception of or belief about something and stems from the Greek ennoia "act of thinking." So the notion of God is our conception of that idea. The notion of an apple may be something along the lines of tempting fruit, or tart, sweet, watery but notion is more than that perceived from it's form but tends towards its essence.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 9:18 pm
My point with 'Actus Purus' is critically that God is an "absolute perfection" in whatever actions God expressed - created the World, Universe, & whatever.
I don't disagree in that Actus Purus implies the actions of God which in essence may be what God is. If you think of the laws of the universe these would be laws resulting from the act of creation i.e., the laws governing the formation of matter and life.

But still you haven't answered my questions that would lead me to answering your conclusion which you merely reiterated.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Spectrum » March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm

jerlands wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 9:59 pm
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 9:18 pm
No, the 'notion of God' do NOT fit within the "empirical-rational reality".
Note I prefer 'idea'[philosophical] rather than 'notion'
It is like the notion of an apple in your mind is not the real apple within the "empirical-rational reality" which can be touched, seen, smelled, felt physically and eaten.

Note;
Notion of apple = corresponding real empirical apple.
Notion of gravity = justified true belief, i.e. testable, repeatable, real.
Notion of God = correspond to what??? - nothing real!
Let's get our terms right.. Notion is a conception of or belief about something and stems from the Greek ennoia "act of thinking." So the notion of God is our conception of that idea. The notion of an apple may be something along the lines of tempting fruit, or tart, sweet, watery but notion is more than that perceived from it's form but tends towards its essence.
OK, notion = "a conception of or belief about something".

Note concepts [as argued] are only applicable to empirically possible things.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concept
God is not an empirical thing or empirically related thought, thus cannot be conceptualized.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 9:18 pm
My point with 'Actus Purus' is critically that God is an "absolute perfection" in whatever actions God expressed - created the World, Universe, & whatever.
I don't disagree in that Actus Purus implies the actions of God which in essence may be what God is.
If you think of the laws of the universe these would be laws resulting from the act of creation i.e., the laws governing the formation of matter and life.
Note there are very deep philosophical views that the Laws of Nature are interdependent with humans [Kant], i.e. they are human-made since God do not exists, illusory is impossible.
Thus you cannot jump in to claim Laws of the Universe are created by God.
You have to prove God exists first before you claim God created the Universe and its Laws.
But still you haven't answered my questions that would lead me to answering your conclusion which you merely reiterated.

I am trying hard to understand what is your questions?
I am serious with it, perhaps you can try to present it in very simple terms.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.

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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 7th, 2018, 11:44 pm

Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
I am serious with it, perhaps you can try to present it in very simple terms.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
OK, notion = "a conception of or belief about something".

Note concepts [as argued] are only applicable to empirically possible things.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concept
God is not an empirical thing or empirically related thought, thus cannot be conceptualized.
It it just me but I keep getting the impression of a square peg in a round hole :)
You seemingly place the cart before the horse. A concept is a formed notion about something. For us to form a notion we have to have some idea of it, something to conceptualize. The concept of abstract, something that exists in the mind alone and doesn't have physical or concrete existence. Does this definition follow your mandates for empirical? But it's odd we can perceive abstract when it doesn't have form. It's just an idea but we somehow are able to observe it. The fact we're able to observe (perceive) it is evident in its definition.

Specifically what I was asking for I'll try and outline.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
P1. Absolute perfection is an impossibility within an empirical-rational reality.
P2. God, imperatively must be absolutely perfect
C. Therefore God is an impossibility.
1.) Regarding P2: Does Actus Purus satisfy your requirements for this?
2.) Regarding P1:
  • a.) does the definition of empirical as that which is observed or perceive satisfy you?
  • b.) does the definition rational include by method of reason satisfy you?
If 1, 2a and 2b are true would you then accept testimony from someone who has observed to satisfy your requirement?

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 8th, 2018, 12:32 am

Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
I am trying hard to understand what is your questions?
I am serious with it, perhaps you can try to present it in very simple terms.
The difficulty I have is I believe your premise lies on you as being the observer of evidence. I don't believe you accept testimony no matter the number. So is there something that you as the observer can witness that might give you proof? That is what I believe you are asking for. You want to be the observer in the proof.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Spectrum » March 8th, 2018, 1:16 am

jerlands wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 11:44 pm
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
I am serious with it, perhaps you can try to present it in very simple terms.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
OK, notion = "a conception of or belief about something".

Note concepts [as argued] are only applicable to empirically possible things.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concept
God is not an empirical thing or empirically related thought, thus cannot be conceptualized.
It it just me but I keep getting the impression of a square peg in a round hole :)
You seemingly place the cart before the horse.
I suggest you keep discussing until you are absolutely sure and do not make quick judgments because you could be ignorant of many other knowledge. Below is the case of your confusions.
A concept is a formed notion about something. For us to form a notion we have to have some idea of it, something to conceptualize. The concept of abstract, something that exists in the mind alone and doesn't have physical or concrete existence. Does this definition follow your mandates for empirical? But it's odd we can perceive abstract when it doesn't have form. It's just an idea but we somehow are able to observe it. The fact we're able to observe (perceive) it is evident in its definition.
1. Empirical is based on experience and observation.
2. Humans and animals experience and observe reality all the time -empirical.
3. Whatever is experienced and observed are stored as sensed-data in the brain.
4. Then the intellect, rational function recognize certain patterns within the parts and combine them into concepts.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concept

Image
When the mind makes a generalization such as the concept of tree, it extracts similarities from numerous examples; the simplification enables higher-level thinking.

The mind is also capable to combing certain experiences and observation to conceptualize abstract things like 'love' which are always represented by empirical and can be justified [tested] empirically.

It is from these concepts that the mind generate 'notions.'

Other than the above the mind is free to think of whatever and also things are not related to experiences and observations, e.g. a square-circle.
Philosophically these are called 'ideas' [Kantian] and like a square-circle are not represented by anything empirically possible and cannot be justified empirically.
Kant assert there are only 3 ideas of transcendental illusions, i.e. God, the Soul, THE Universe-as-a-Whole.

This is the basis why the idea of God is an impossibility to be real within the empirical-rational reality because it is absent of any empirical elements.


Specifically what I was asking for I'll try and outline.
Spectrum wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:33 pm
P1. Absolute perfection is an impossibility within an empirical-rational reality.
P2. God, imperatively must be absolutely perfect
C. Therefore God is an impossibility.
1.) Regarding P2: Does Actus Purus satisfy your requirements for this?
2.) Regarding P1:
  • a.) does the definition of empirical as that which is observed or perceive satisfy you?
  • b.) does the definition rational include by method of reason satisfy you?
If 1, 2a and 2b are true would you then accept testimony from someone who has observed to satisfy your requirement?

Actus Purus is just a supporting point to show that the more advanced theologians recognized the idea of 'absolute perfection'. This is because many here argued theists do not recognize God as an absolute perfect being. So I refer them to Actus Purus as an example. There are other reference where theologian used the term absolute perfection, i.e. St. Anselm, Descartes and others.

Re P2. I have given a whole load of arguments to justify why God MUST BE an absolutely perfection.

Re P1 - I am not expecting observation to satisfy me.
I have explained why 'perfection' [relative] is possible in the empirical, e.g. a perfect score of 300 points in a ten-pin bowling game, or 10/10 in a diving competition, BUT
-it is impossible for absolute perfection to exists within the empirical.
This is because the empirical is always conditional upon experience and observations and can be justified.
Since the idea of God is totally unconditional, i.e. absolute perfection, then God is an impossibility within empirical-rational reality.

In the above, I am not asking for empirical evidence to satisfy.
The whole argument is based on reason only.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.

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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 8th, 2018, 2:07 am

Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 1:16 am

-it is impossible for absolute perfection to exists within the empirical.
Image


Man expresses his notions of perception through medium that in and of themselves do not fall within the realm of absolute perfection. When we think of absolute perfection we are looking at the laws that govern things that we see in nature. That is the absolute perfection you are looking for.
Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 1:16 am
This is because the empirical is always conditional upon experience and observations and can be justified.
Since the idea of God is totally unconditional, i.e. absolute perfection, then God is an impossibility within empirical-rational reality.

In the above, I am not asking for empirical evidence to satisfy.
The whole argument is based on reason only.
The perfection of life.. simply look at it. The earth, the moon, the sun, the planets all in some amazing form of harmony which we seem to take for granted. Go from the macro to the micro and you see the same laws echoed in all things.
.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Spectrum » March 8th, 2018, 2:29 am

jerlands wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 2:07 am
Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 1:16 am

-it is impossible for absolute perfection to exists within the empirical.
Man expresses his notions of perception through medium that in and of themselves do not fall within the realm of absolute perfection. When we think of absolute perfection we are looking at the laws that govern things that we see in nature. That is the absolute perfection you are looking for.
Whatever laws of nature [empirical] you can think of or understand cannot be absolute perfection because they are conditioned by humans.
Since they are conditioned [empirically] they cannot be absolute perfection, i.e. totally unconditional.

The issue is you are wrong in taking 'the laws that govern things that we see in nature' as absolute perfection. Note Newton's Laws, Einstein's Law re Relativity.. etc. are all human made laws. They cannot be absolutely perfect Laws.
Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 1:16 am
This is because the empirical is always conditional upon experience and observations and can be justified.
Since the idea of God is totally unconditional, i.e. absolute perfection, then God is an impossibility within empirical-rational reality.

In the above, I am not asking for empirical evidence to satisfy.
The whole argument is based on reason only.
The perfection of life.. simply look at it. The earth, the moon, the sun, the planets all in some amazing form of harmony which we seem to take for granted. Go from the macro to the micro and you see the same laws echoed in all things.
.
Whatever shape you assign for the earth, the moon, the sun, the planets , etc. they are all human made, i.e. conceptualized in the mind.

Is the moon perfectly round?
Nah the moon surface is full or craters thus not a smooth surface.
An empirical perfect circle is defined by certain measurements.
Note empirical perfection is not absolute perfection.
Therefore a perfect round moon must satisfy the definition of a perfect circle at every possible points on the surface of the moon.
Thus it is impossible to have such a empirical related perfection, what more to claim for absolute perfection of the moon.

Even at the micro level,
Electrons are conditioned by observation, e.g. the Wave Function Collapse.

Think harder... there are no absolute perfection in the empirical-rational reality.

Before you make any claim of absolute perfection, justify why that thing is of absolute perfection, just don't make claims based on superficial thinking.
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Re: Proof of God

Post by jerlands » March 8th, 2018, 3:23 am

Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 2:29 am
jerlands wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 2:07 am

Man expresses his notions of perception through medium that in and of themselves do not fall within the realm of absolute perfection. When we think of absolute perfection we are looking at the laws that govern things that we see in nature. That is the absolute perfection you are looking for.
Whatever laws of nature [empirical] you can think of or understand cannot be absolute perfection because they are conditioned by humans.
Since they are conditioned [empirically] they cannot be absolute perfection, i.e. totally unconditional.

The issue is you are wrong in taking 'the laws that govern things that we see in nature' as absolute perfection. Note Newton's Laws, Einstein's Law re Relativity.. etc. are all human made laws. They cannot be absolutely perfect Laws.
Any accepted theorem is a mere reflection and therefore incomplete. You seem to be arguing God doesn't exist because man is incapable of expressing Gods existence?
Spectrum wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 2:29 am
The perfection of life.. simply look at it. The earth, the moon, the sun, the planets all in some amazing form of harmony which we seem to take for granted. Go from the macro to the micro and you see the same laws echoed in all things.
.
Whatever shape you assign for the earth, the moon, the sun, the planets , etc. they are all human made, i.e. conceptualized in the mind.

Is the moon perfectly round?
Nah the moon surface is full or craters thus not a smooth surface.
An empirical perfect circle is defined by certain measurements.
Note empirical perfection is not absolute perfection.
Therefore a perfect round moon must satisfy the definition of a perfect circle at every possible points on the surface of the moon.
Thus it is impossible to have such a empirical related perfection, what more to claim for absolute perfection of the moon.

Even at the micro level,
Electrons are conditioned by observation, e.g. the Wave Function Collapse.

Think harder... there are no absolute perfection in the empirical-rational reality.

Before you make any claim of absolute perfection, justify why that thing is of absolute perfection, just don't make claims based on superficial thinking.
What you fail to see is the harmony. What you perceive as imperfections may indeed be part of the balance.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Philosch » March 8th, 2018, 11:26 am

To Spectrum:

I will accept your word "absolute" as a distinguishing characteristic of one notion of god. Be careful though as the eastern religions I don't believe view gods the same was as the occidental religions or what you call the "Abrahamic" religions. I still have an issue with perfection as being primary although I would agree that it's certainly important in some traditions. Lastly I would agree totally with Kant in that I think it is an impossibility to either prove or disprove the existence of the "god" that the commonly accepted term refers to. That is why I think the igtheist position is the most rationally tenable. I may strongly believe that no such creator exists but as the "god of the gaps" argument demonstrates, there will always be the dark corner in the room where the notion of a transcendent perfect(as you suggest) being resides, and thus can't ever be ruled out completely.

I think proving "god" as an impossibility can be undone but simply altering definitions to allow "god" to occupy the space beyond the reach of our own knowledge. That is what seems to happen on this forum in every one of these "does god exist" discussions.

I am in total agreement with your concerns about such beliefs and I do think it's time mankind matures beyond such primitive notions but we need to progress farther in the neurosciences to win the final battle. I think on the other hand it's far easier to disprove the existence of a particular or specific god like the god of the bible. There you have a much better chance.

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Re: Proof of God

Post by Philosch » March 8th, 2018, 11:30 am

a couple of corrections....end of the first paragraph above it's (n)ever be ruled out completely and the first line in second paragraph is 'can be undone (by) simply altering"....

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