Author Topic: The Uncaused Cause  (Read 4679 times)

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Offline rickymooston

Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #29 on: September 20, 2011, 09:01:09 PM »
Then your God created suffering for no other purpose than to create suffering.

Not necessarily. The suffering may be a path to something else; e.g., a greater end such as "spiritual" growth. It is a fact that, people often grow by some measure of suffering. If you add the postulate that an eternal life, whatever that means, exists and that one retains lessons from this life in the next, other alternatives make sense.

In fact, this is what many theists belief. They believe this world is a transition to a world to come and in the course of that transition, we grow.

I'm not sure if you caught the obvious. The user in question seems to be agnostic here. He isn't stating that God exists but taking the conditional, "if God exists".

That was why he responded in the way that seems to have angered you.
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Offline Omen

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #30 on: September 20, 2011, 09:04:36 PM »
Then your God created suffering for no other purpose than to create suffering.

Not necessarily. The suffering may be a path to something else

Nope.

God, possessing of attributes of omniscience and omnipotence, doesn't have to predicate any goal on a lesser requirement.  That is logically such a being can have that 'something else' without suffering, hence the meaningless nature of suffering.  Therefore, suffering in and of itself, can serve no purpose other than the suffering itself.  You mimic'd a typical religious apologetic red herring, it doesn't actually answer the problem and only begs the very same conditional problem.
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #31 on: September 21, 2011, 02:01:19 AM »
.....suffering may be a path to something else; e.g., a greater end such as "spiritual" growth. It is a fact that, people often grow by some measure of suffering. If you add the postulate that an eternal life, whatever that means, exists and that one retains lessons from this life in the next, other alternatives make sense.

Aye, what Omen said.  See, here's the thing: the rationalisation behind suffering is that it means that a particular person can be in/at a particular state of existence at a particular point in their life - in this case, that they can be "admissable" to heaven at the point of death.

But once you've said "this state of being is the requirement for eternal life"....then you need to explain exactly why a loving and merciful god does not simply create people in that state with their hand on the doorbell of heaven.  He's GOD, after all - creating a being in adult form with certain traits and knowledge is no problem for him - he did it with Adam and Eve after all.  And lets face it, us mere humans are perfectly capable of creating false memories; manipulating people's emotions and feelings; of repressing things we don't want to think about.  If we can make ourselves "heaven-ready", there is no issue at all for us not to all have been created that way.....unless it is the desire of god that some people shall fail and be damned forever.

Which is, of course, eminently possible.  A world where suffering happens is entirely in line with a god that doesn't give a stuff - just NOT with a god whose primary characteristics are love and mercy.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #32 on: September 21, 2011, 08:53:40 AM »
Alright, I'll tone it down... but I don't think I have unjust cause to be wary about a hidden agenda when I see statements personifying that which existed 'before' the universe's rapid expansion as "godlike" and as a "parent".

I'd add to this, isn't TOT the one who is claiming that God has a plan?  Can "energy" have a plan?  I can understand the caution and the reasons why the OP may be harmless but it seems rather strange with what we've seen in the past.

To be clear, ToT does not know A) if there is a God or B) whether God, if there is one has a plan or not. Tot's contention is that if there is a God that created man and placed him in an environment where "falling" was the likely outcome, then obviously God would have had to have man's fall as a part of His plan.

so can you explain the point of your new thought that energy is god?  And again how energy has a plan?
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Offline Truth OT

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #33 on: September 21, 2011, 10:49:33 AM »
so can you explain the point of your new thought that energy is god?  And again how energy has a plan?

Clearly you either totally misunderstand what I have been discussing in this thread or you have an agenda that involves picking a fight unnecessarily.
I am not saying that energy is God, nor am I saying that energy is in any way sentient that it could even have a plan. I only made a comparison of a quality I ASSUMED energy has as being "godlike" since God has been said to be from everlasting to everlasting. Seriously, did you read the OP? If you did, I doubt that you would ask such questions.


Quote
Many, of which I am included, have made the declaration that because there is existence, then that means that there must be or have been a cause that was uncaused. This idea of an uncaused cause has directed people's attention to theology and endless debate about the existence and nature of God. The idea of a god being this uncause cause requires a leap of faith that assumes that that uncaused cause acted with purpose, was sentient, was in many ways, with the exception of the physical, existing in the image and likeness of man.

What I have slowly come to realize is that there is no hard evidence or reason to come to such a conclusion other than wishful thinking.
What makes more sense as it relates to the idea of there being an uncaused cause, is that that cause is in fact simply, ENERGY. 

Energy seems to be the one think that may in fact possess the "godlike" quality of being from everlasting to everlasting in that as far as we know, it is neither created or destroyed; It simply exists in various forms.

Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #34 on: September 21, 2011, 11:30:17 AM »
so can you explain the point of your new thought that energy is god?  And again how energy has a plan?

Clearly you either totally misunderstand what I have been discussing in this thread or you have an agenda that involves picking a fight unnecessarily.
I am not saying that energy is God, nor am I saying that energy is in any way sentient that it could even have a plan. I only made a comparison of a quality I ASSUMED energy has as being "godlike" since God has been said to be from everlasting to everlasting. Seriously, did you read the OP? If you did, I doubt that you would ask such questions.
Then you'd be wrong.  In other posts you have said that god must have some plan, if there is a god.  You seem to want to have a god in this example but you want to equate this god to "energy".    If God equates to energy, then if "god" as defined exists, then this god which equals "energy" must have a plan. 

However, if energy is energy, and not god and not defined as god, then it doesnt' have to have a plan.   As I see it, your attempt to redefine god as "energy" confuses the issue.  Are you abandoning the idea that there is any god that sentiently directs anything?
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Offline Truth OT

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #35 on: September 21, 2011, 12:01:33 PM »
so can you explain the point of your new thought that energy is god?  And again how energy has a plan?

Clearly you either totally misunderstand what I have been discussing in this thread or you have an agenda that involves picking a fight unnecessarily.
I am not saying that energy is God, nor am I saying that energy is in any way sentient that it could even have a plan. I only made a comparison of a quality I ASSUMED energy has as being "godlike" since God has been said to be from everlasting to everlasting. Seriously, did you read the OP? If you did, I doubt that you would ask such questions.
Then you'd be wrong.  In other posts you have said that god must have some plan, if there is a god.  You seem to want to have a god in this example but you want to equate this god to "energy".    If God equates to energy, then if "god" as defined exists, then this god which equals "energy" must have a plan. 

However, if energy is energy, and not god and not defined as god, then it doesnt' have to have a plan.   As I see it, your attempt to redefine god as "energy" confuses the issue.  Are you abandoning the idea that there is any god that sentiently directs anything?

You're still missing it, so allow me to clarify once again by first repeating what I wrote and then flatly stating that I do not intend for energy to be one and the same with God.

The idea of a god being this uncaused cause requires a leap of faith that assumes that that uncaused cause acted with purpose, was sentient, was in many ways, with the exception of the physical, existing in the image and likeness of man. What I have slowly come to realize is that there is no hard evidence or reason to come to such a conclusion other than wishful thinking.

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Offline Aaron123

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #36 on: September 21, 2011, 01:49:08 PM »
There is something I don't think is being addressed here.

Why do you think there was an "uncaused cause"?  I get that you're trying to say that 'energy' is what caused the big bang, but why assume that it was "uncaused", or that there needs to be something that was uncaused?
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Offline Truth OT

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #37 on: September 21, 2011, 01:55:11 PM »
There is something I don't think is being addressed here.

Why do you think there was an "uncaused cause"?  I get that you're trying to say that 'energy' is what caused the big bang, but why assume that it was "uncaused", or that there needs to be something that was uncaused?

What other logical options are there? It would seem that there had to have been either an uncaused something or various uncaused somethings in order for something to ever come about. It makes no sense to me believe that there was nothing that was uncaused for if that were the case then wouldn't that mean that there at some point would have been a void of initial and total nothingness? And if so, then wouldn't it always be that way?

Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #38 on: September 22, 2011, 09:00:02 AM »
velkyn,

unless I have misunderstood TOT, he is not saying energy = god.  He has gone out of his way to say that is not what he means.  He is saying that he does not have any reason to think that the uncaused "thing" that caused the big bang (or whatever) was a god, but he does have reason, in his opinion, that it was energy. He is saying energy and a hypothetical god share only the quality of either being uncaused or being eternal. 

TOT, correct me if I am mistaken.
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Offline Whateverman

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #39 on: September 22, 2011, 09:35:01 AM »
Your response was not to what he actually said, but to what you assumed he would say.
This happens so frequently in online discussions that it's a wonder people ever conclude anything.  I was going to comment on the OP, saw that it was drifting into suspicion, and decided to keep reading.  I'm glad y'all tried to bring it back to the topic.  Correction like this happens rarely, and it's one of the reasons I continue reading & posting here.

ToT, I've read some of the threads where you and others talked about the origins of the universe.  "Energy = uncaused cause" seems to be a logical conclusion, but I don't think it can be held with confidence.  Singularities represent a fundamental flaw in our understanding of cosmology, the point at which all of our theories break down.  It's a placeholder for our ignorance.

It doesn't matter that our laws state energy can neither be created or destroyed: at some level, we're wrong about what happens when light-years of matter get compacted into the size of a teaspoon.  This means we simply don't know what caused the universe to be created - and we're not even sure there WAS a cause.

We're trying to understand things from within a framework that we know is flawed.  Use that to keep your "uncaused cause" idea in perspective.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #40 on: September 22, 2011, 11:15:57 AM »
velkyn,

unless I have misunderstood TOT, he is not saying energy = god.  He has gone out of his way to say that is not what he means.  He is saying that he does not have any reason to think that the uncaused "thing" that caused the big bang (or whatever) was a god, but he does have reason, in his opinion, that it was energy. He is saying energy and a hypothetical god share only the quality of either being uncaused or being eternal. 

TOT, correct me if I am mistaken.

I still see this as equating energy to God or a "god" aka the "uncaused thing".      I had mentioned that I was confused by TOT's claims that if god exists, then god has a plan.    And then he is claiming that energy "caused" the BBT as the uncaused cause.  Now, it may be that cause is what is the problem here since to cause something would indicate that there was an intent from an uncaused cause, and thus no process to simply make things happen like, say a bowling ball striking pins.  The ball did not cause the pins to fall, the cause was the bowler. 

Does this make more sense on what I'm thinking here?
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Offline Whateverman

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #41 on: September 22, 2011, 12:46:54 PM »
to cause something would indicate that there was an intent from an uncaused cause, and thus no process to simply make things happen like, say a bowling ball striking pins.  The ball did not cause the pins to fall, the cause was the bowler.
The ball was the proximate cause, though the bowler would be the "ultimate" cause.

Part of the problem is that we have to label the thing/entity/event that was the ultimate cause.  If ToT suggests it was energy, nothing would have created it, for otherwise we would have labeled that other thing the ultimate cause.

I don't believe intent is suggested when pointing to energy as the first cause. 

I hope I've added to the discussion rather than muddying it up.
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Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #42 on: September 22, 2011, 03:57:36 PM »
I still see this as equating energy to God or a "god" aka the "uncaused thing".   

Why?   

If we are talking about the universe and the question is what caused the universe, and the answer I give is "a natural process that is not a conscious agent", do you still take that to be god?   

He's said explicitly more than once "not god". He may be leading up to, "and that energy is god!" or, "and that energy comes from god!", but he hasn't yet.  So far, near as I can tell, he's saying "In the beginning there was energy, and the energy was all there was, and the energy was not god, because that is an unjustifiable leap by my reckoning."  He may get there.  But so far, he's not made that leap.

I had mentioned that I was confused by TOT's claims that if god exists, then god has a plan.

I see that as an entirely separate question.  And didn't he say that in a different thread? 

And then he is claiming that energy "caused" the BBT as the uncaused cause.  Now, it may be that cause is what is the problem here since to cause something would indicate that there was an intent from an uncaused cause, and thus no process to simply make things happen like, say a bowling ball striking pins.  The ball did not cause the pins to fall, the cause was the bowler. 

Does this make more sense on what I'm thinking here?

I think its a stretch.  If the two are analagous, then there would be no bowler.  The ball would be "uncaused".  Or the pins.   

If you analyze it enough, it may be that what he is saying is balloney.  But that might be a function of the topic.  The problem may be the whole idea of uncaused causes.  It may be that "uncaused cause" as irrelevant as "invisible blue" or "round square".   It might just be a pair of self contradictory words we can say but cannot really conceptualize and so is meaningless. 

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Offline Cyberia

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #43 on: September 22, 2011, 06:50:50 PM »
What other logical options are there?
An excellent, excellent question!


It would seem that there had to have been either an uncaused something or various uncaused somethings in order for something to ever come about.
This is an assumption.  That's not criticism, because every single thing that happens around us has a cause, then that cause had a cause, and so on.  So, logically there MUST have been an "Original Cause" that was itself Uncaused, by logical necessity, right?  This basically the Cosmological/Kalam/First Cause argument.

Here is why that assumption (and the Cosmological/Kalam argument) fails:  The "BB Singularity" wasn't just a compression of all the matter and energy in the universe into a single point, it was the compression of Space-time too!   Space-time.....  and I don't mean Past and Future, I mean the progression of time, tick-tock-tiiiick-tooooock-tiiiiiiiii..........

The Cosmological/Kalam/First Cause argument ASSUMES time exists externally from everything else.  It FAILS to acknowledge that TIME itself began (or stopped, depending on which way you look at it) at the BB.  TIME was the EVENT.  A cause logically CAN'T occur here because "before time" is a contradiction. 

So either:

1) There was an "Uncaused Event", meaning no God(s) or ANY OTHER causes exist AT ALL, BY DEFINITION, or

2) The compression of spacetime reduced the distance between Cause and Effect to ZERO, or at least less than one unit of Plank-Time.  In other words, Cause and Effect MUST have been simultaneous, which makes sense, given that Time was stopped/started at T=0.  Not only simultaneous, but indistinguishable!  Neither one can be identified as the "cause" or "effect", also by definition, right?  Welcome to 100% All-natural spontaneous self-creation.

Option #2 is actually at the cutting edge of theoretical physics today, because, well, the math works.  As far as we can tell, it seems possible (only) at T=0, under known physical conditions applicable to the BB, to have cause and effect mutually self-trigger

No one studies Option #1 because, if true, there isn't a cause and thus nothing to study.


It makes no sense to me believe that there was nothing that was uncaused for if that were the case then wouldn't that mean that there at some point would have been a void of initial and total nothingness? And if so, then wouldn't it always be that way?

This is the easy part.  Where did the energy come from?

Do you mean the Void that existed "before time"?  Even if I grant that, The Uncertainty Principle produces a counter-intuitive, but logical, solution.  There are many values that exist in "uncertain" relationships in physics.  The most common one discussed is the uncertainty of position and momentum.  The more accurately you know one, the less accurately you know the other.  But other values exist with uncertainty too.  An important one is Time-Energy uncertainty.

At the BB, Time is PRECISELY known.  T=0.  Period.  So the energy content of the Void has infinite UNcertainty.  That's not necessarily to say the universe actually has infinite energy, but that the total amount of energy of the universe could take on ANY discrete value up to infinity.  Any "True Void" is unstable and MUST break-down instantaneously.  An eternal, True Void is not physically possible.  An instantaneous one is possible, but those create universes.  :)

Furthermore, if the void is infinitely large, this will happen in infinitely many places. Hello multiverse.

But, perhaps you mean that since 0=0, how can anything come from that?  Well, because "zero" isn't unitary.  In fact, it's infinitely the opposite of unitary.  LOTS of things equal 0, like obviously 0, but also 3 - 3, or 5 - 5, or X - X.  As long as you have a "negative something" to balance out the "something", it's possible.  In other words, while you CAN'T get "something" for nothing, you CAN get "something plus negative something" for nothing.

That "negative something" is Gravity.  It's the reason why matter emits gravity and gravity works on matter.  The price of matter, is gravity.  They are linked, by necessity, "X" and "-X".  Therefore, overall, the universe has ZERO net energy, and no rules are broken.  Furthermore, if this occurred, the geometry of the produced universe would HAVE to be FLAT.  Want to guess what geometry our universe has?

So now were up to 100% All-natural spontaneous self-creation, ex-nihilo, as an actual physical possibility.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2011, 06:52:30 PM by Cyberia »
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Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #44 on: September 23, 2011, 08:57:06 AM »
I still see this as equating energy to God or a "god" aka the "uncaused thing".   

Why?   
see the rest of my post.  As for what you think is stretching, that's your opinion.
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Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #45 on: September 23, 2011, 11:41:40 AM »
As for what you think is stretching, that's your opinion.

When you say "that's your opinion", how exactly do you mean that?  It is not always easy to tell on the intertubes the tone of a post.  It sounds to me like you read something you did not expect or did not like and so now you are being dismissive.  "That's just your opinion".  I'd like to think you wouldn't do that though.   But that is how it sounds when I read it.  Please clarify.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #46 on: September 23, 2011, 12:21:59 PM »
As for what you think is stretching, that's your opinion.

When you say "that's your opinion", how exactly do you mean that?  It is not always easy to tell on the intertubes the tone of a post.  It sounds to me like you read something you did not expect or did not like and so now you are being dismissive.  "That's just your opinion".  I'd like to think you wouldn't do that though.   But that is how it sounds when I read it.  Please clarify.
nope, I am neutrally saying it's just your opinion.  I disagree and that's my opinion. 
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Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #47 on: September 26, 2011, 06:59:16 AM »
Okay, I'll take you at your word.  For your benefit though, in the future it would serve you better to use a different phrase.   

"That's just your opinion" has other baggage. It is a conversation stopping sentence because it sounds very dismissive.  It says, "what you have to say is irrelevant."  Oddly, I find that offensive.  Sometimes it is said innocently and correctly as a matter of differentiating fact from conjecture, which is fine.  But that is hardly ever the case because people harldy ever do not realize what they are voicing is opinion.  I am well aware that what I posted was my opinion.  So pointing that out is unnecessary and comes off as dismissive. 
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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #48 on: September 26, 2011, 09:32:48 AM »
Then your God created suffering for no other purpose than to create suffering.

Not necessarily. The suffering may be a path to something else; e.g., a greater end such as "spiritual" growth. It is a fact that, people often grow by some measure of suffering. If you add the postulate that an eternal life, whatever that means, exists and that one retains lessons from this life in the next, other alternatives make sense.

In fact, this is what many theists belief. They believe this world is a transition to a world to come and in the course of that transition, we grow.

I'm not sure if you caught the obvious. The user in question seems to be agnostic here. He isn't stating that God exists but taking the conditional, "if God exists".

That was why he responded in the way that seems to have angered you.
Were there any grain of truth in "The suffering may be a path to something else; e.g., a greater end such as "spiritual" growth. " then there would be some use for this in the afterlife. However, in the afterlife there is no suffering.

So what was the point?
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Offline velkyn

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #49 on: September 26, 2011, 10:42:09 AM »
Okay, I'll take you at your word.  For your benefit though, in the future it would serve you better to use a different phrase.   

"That's just your opinion" has other baggage. It is a conversation stopping sentence because it sounds very dismissive.  It says, "what you have to say is irrelevant."  Oddly, I find that offensive.  Sometimes it is said innocently and correctly as a matter of differentiating fact from conjecture, which is fine.  But that is hardly ever the case because people harldy ever do not realize what they are voicing is opinion.  I am well aware that what I posted was my opinion.  So pointing that out is unnecessary and comes off as dismissive.

gee, my word is taken.  Sorry, but I don't care that you have deigned to be so magnanimous.  And yes, here I am indeed rolling my eyes. 
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Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #50 on: September 26, 2011, 11:46:34 AM »
gee, my word is taken.  Sorry, but I don't care that you have deigned to be so magnanimous.  And yes, here I am indeed rolling my eyes.

I appreciate you letting me know you do not value civility between us.  I will not waste it on you in the future.

By all means, do get back to that shitty, dishonest argument you were trying to make.  The one where you were trying to say TOT said the exact opposite of what he actually said.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #51 on: September 26, 2011, 11:58:45 AM »
Isn't part of the premise of Hawking radiation that particle-pairs can poof into existence and then obliterate themselves without something causing it to happen?  And aren't those particle pairs essentially energy, albeit in an infinitesimal amount?  While it takes something like a black hole to prevent them from mutually obliteration, isn't that something like an "uncaused cause"?  You have something happen that doesn't require a precursor cause, but everything that happens afterward follows causal reasoning.
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #52 on: September 26, 2011, 12:22:32 PM »
Bookmark.
Unless you are Scarlett Johansason or something.  lol  i'd like to punish her with  my baby.  lol

Offline Truth OT

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #53 on: September 26, 2011, 12:25:01 PM »
Isn't part of the premise of Hawking radiation that particle-pairs can poof into existence and then obliterate themselves without something causing it to happen?  And aren't those particle pairs essentially energy, albeit in an infinitesimal amount?  While it takes something like a black hole to prevent them from mutually obliteration, isn't that something like an "uncaused cause"?  You have something happen that doesn't require a precursor cause, but everything that happens afterward follows causal reasoning.

These subatomic particles still seem to be a mystery in quantum mechanics. To my knowledge we have yet to have been able measure or even analyze these particles to even know with any degree of certainty what they or what the nature of their appearance and disappearance is.

Offline Alendar

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #54 on: October 04, 2011, 03:33:00 PM »
But what caused the energy?  If we treat it as being infinite in terms of time, then we avoid the question of what precedes it.  The law of conservation of  energy says it cannot be created or destroyed in any closed system.  It does not describe the origins of energy.  If the universe is the closed system, then energy within that system is conserved.  If energy existed before the universe (along with time), then it could have been added when the universe formed, like gas in a balloon.

The constancy of energy and matter is intriguing, but if they existed outside the known universe, they would be a property of that super-verse as well.  Would they follow the same law?  If they could be injected into a new universe, then I would think that the law would be different.  Perhaps universes are like the chambers in cow's stomach: An umen, reticulum, omasum, and abomasum.  At each chamber an ingredient is injected.  First time, then energy, then stir vigorously for several minutes.

Even if energy is the first ingredient, it doesn't seem like much a cause.  Where does the information come from?  Why did the energy decide to convert to matter?  If it was cooling, why was it hot?

Offline screwtape

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #55 on: October 04, 2011, 03:41:57 PM »
Where does the information come from?

? What the heck does that even mean? 

Why did the energy decide to convert to matter?

? Energy does not make decisions.

If it was cooling, why was it hot?

Because it was energy.  If it were cold it would not be called "energy".  It would be called something else, like "ice".

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Offline Whateverman

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #56 on: October 04, 2011, 03:58:26 PM »
If it was cooling, why was it hot?

Because it was energy.
Not necessarily, no.  Take a lit blow torch and point it at the sky.  Why isn't the universe the same temperature as the flame?

Because the chemical energy turned into heat energy, which was allowed to expand.

I understand why Alendar is asking some of the preceding questions.  When people say things like "energy was the first cause", I suspect they're most often making that statement in the context of theological cosmology argument: "If God wasn't the first cause, what else could be?"

It's clear that we do not know what caused the universe to exist.  We understand a little of the process once that first spark appeared; enough to know that butt-loads of energy was involved.  However, to surmise that energy itself was the cause is only slightly less faith-based than the assertion that it was a deity who cares about what I do with my naughty bits in my spare time.
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Offline Truth OT

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Re: The Uncaused Cause
« Reply #57 on: October 04, 2011, 04:08:13 PM »
It seems that we can, with a great degree of certainty postulate that energy is prevailent all throughout our universe and we have every reason to believe that such has always been the case.
When I raise the question of whether energy was the first cause, I was thinking along the lines of energy being the mechanism that made it possible for all other things to come into existence and develop. My thinking was that energy, or it's properties may have always existed and that was eventually manifested and it is that manifestation that led to all we know of today.

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Whether one is a theist or not, how does one answer certain questions with any degree of certainty? As a person that once fully believed the scriptures I will admit that I could not come up with any good answers from religion for a number of reasons. If the "God did it" scenario was accepted, there was no way to verify the identity or identities of that/those entities. In addition, I am also unconvinced that the answers the scientific community has been able to supply SO FAR are much better. The advantage that the scientific community have in my opinion is the ability to hypothesize and then test. Eventually that MAY lead to a definitive conclusion to the mystery. Questions I still have are:

Was there ever a point or period where all there was was emptiness or a void?
If so, then why is it that the void did not continue eternally?
If not, then something(s) must be infinite. What are those things?