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  1. #131
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    Yeah. Seriously, it strikes me as somewhat arrogant on both sides, that one side is so certain there IS a specific God, and the other side is so certain there is NO God. Personally, I think they're both jumping to conclusions, because this concept is supposed to represent something beyond our comprehension. If it weren't, then it wouldn't be worthy of being called a God.
    Wow.

    For once I absolutely and wholly agree with you.
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  2. #132
    PEST that STEPs on PETS stellar renegade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
    You're absolutely correct.
    But let's say the question doesn't pertain to reality anyway. What if God is, as some traditions claim, self-existent? Creates his own space and doesn't need a room? Therefore anything he would create would just extent outward from him and create its own space as well, ie Big Bang.

    As for being infinite, I have a problem with the modern idea that, for instance, a line extends without end in either direction. How is that even possible? Have you ever heard of Hilbert's paradox of the Grand Hotel? There's a reason the ancient idea of infinity was a loop.

    The sanest definitions of omnipotence is that God has all the power that there ever could be, and can do anything that could be logically done (without the arbitrary boundaries of our own self-imposed thought, of course) and omniscience as knowing all there is to know.

    For instance, if you asked God how many hours are in a mile or whether yellow is square or round, not even He could answer anything so absurd.
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  3. #133
    Occasional Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Could you elaborate upon this? If the universe came from nothing then why couldn't God be the cause of it?
    premise 1: the universe came from nothing
    premise 2: the universe came from God

    hm....

  4. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
    Yes, and in every case you've clearly responded almost immediately upon reading the post and then, content that you've found some grounds upon which to dismiss the idea (one of the greatest and most lasting philosophical tenants, incidentally), given it no further thought until it came time to read the latest post and respond in the same manner again.

    Either that or you have indeed been contemplating it for days and have still failed to grasp it. You seem more intelligent than that.
    I'm probably somewhere in the middle. Incidentally, the Christian conception of God's been around a bit too from what I hear... More importantly - there's also the possibility that I've thought about it, grasped it, and still don't find it very compelling. With the caveat that I likely wouldn't know if I haven't grasped it, I really think this possibility is the case.
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  5. #135
    PEST that STEPs on PETS stellar renegade's Avatar
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    The Bible seems to allude to the thought, if not outright say, that creation came from God's very being.

    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    It seems that reason is very rarely effective once a particular worldview has lodged itself in someone's mind, so whatever shapes ones views on religion, it certainly isn't logic. Probably emotional predispositions and experience/upbringing.
    Yep, I totally agree. No matter how much you try to argue with people, they always seem to be looking over your shoulder at some mammoth institution of thought that's irrelevant to your discussion with them.

    It's really frustrating.

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  6. #136
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    premise 1: the universe came from nothing
    premise 2: the universe came from God

    hm....
    Ok, now I see the point that he was trying to make. However those are not the only two possible premises. Restate like this:

    Premise 1: the universe came from nothing
    Premise 2: God created the universe

    Conclusion: God created the universe from nothing.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
    While I'm glad to see that SW is elaborating upon this concept in other manners, he is approaching the concept from an angle other than from that which I did at the outset of this thread. My point was a simple one: any finite object must adhere within reality. A finite object would end. What would be beyond its borders? Non-reality? This is by definition impossible. The only solution is that reality is infinite.

    An important note is that I use the term "borders" metaphorically; an object finite in any respect will end in some respect. We are not only discussing spatial or temporal finiteness, a point which several respondents have failed to grasp. And yes, while the definition of the infinite I must use for the purposes of this discussion may not be one of the more common definitions, it's still a valid one, and I've gone to pains to make it as clear as possible what I mean in my use of the term.

    As for your final point, I'm unaware of any major branch of Christianity that would be content with what you pose: that God is finite, meaning that He merely adheres within reality, meaning that while He may appear godlike from our perspective, He is not the creator of Reality, merely one of its inhabitants.

    Liquid, if you are genuinely interested in approaching my thesis, as it is, in this thread, I'll happily do what I can to try to further elucidate. As it stands, you'll pardon me if I can only believe that you're grasping for grounds, semantic or otherwise, to dismiss it.
    I have been genuinely interested in what you are saying, but your argument from the beginning has appeared to be a straw man. I don't think you are doing this intentionally, but several posters have said you misrepresent the common perception of the Judeo-Christian God. This means the argument is a straw man whether intentional or not.

    From what I understand of your definition of infinity, your argument seems to be "If God is already everything that could possibly exist, then He can't create something else." I would agree this statement is true, but I don't think that anyone believes this.
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  7. #137
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott View Post
    No, that would fall under the "already-existing things" side that I already denied. In the case of creation ex nihilo he doesn't use the material that was not created by him, he creates from nothing (or, in latin, ex nihilo). I have to assume we're having some problem in communication here, but I can't for the life of my figure out what it is...
    My claim is that it is impossible to make something from nothing. (For example, I made an airplane out of nothing, just thin air. That is, exactly how a magician produced a box of chocolate without any material to work with. He just 'magically' made it appear on the table somehow).

    My argument is that the ex nihilo principle is a mere 'trick', just like magic. It is not an argument. If it is otherwise, the theist must be able to show what laws of nature make it possible for God (or anyone) to create things out of nothing. Thus far, I have not been able to think of any.
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  8. #138
    The elder Holmes Mycroft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    From what I understand of your definition of infinity, your argument seems to be "If God is already everything that could possibly exist, then He can't create something else." I would agree this statement is true, but I don't think that anyone believes this.
    This misses the point of what I've been saying so completely that I have to wonder if you're being sincere.
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  9. #139
    The elder Holmes Mycroft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott View Post
    With the caveat that I likely wouldn't know if I haven't grasped it, I really think this possibility is the case.
    This is the fundamental problem, yes. One must understand a concept himself to know what constitutes understanding.

    I speak in plain terms, with no intention to insult: the questions you've asked and points you've raised indicate that you've not properly understood the concept. I'm not being facetious or sarcastic when I apologize that I've been unable to elucidate the concept any more clearly. Again, perhaps in the future, a better illustration or allegory will occur to me.
    Dost thou love Life? Then do not squander Time; for that's the Stuff Life is made of.

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  10. #140
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    My argument is that the ex nihilo principle is a mere 'trick', just like magic. It is not an argument. If it is otherwise, the theist must be able to show what laws of nature make it possible for God (or anyone) to create things out of nothing. Thus far, I have not been able to think of any.
    I honestly don't even know how we could quantify that. And how are laws defined? Does "God" override natural law by a display of supernatural power, or does it only appear supernatural and the potential Divine is simply able to make use of laws that human beings are not capable of perceiving and manipulating?

    Don't ask me how to even answer that question.
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