Author Topic: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?  (Read 2066 times)

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Offline Graybeard

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If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« on: October 11, 2011, 04:38:28 PM »
This is Religion and Society as Scoiety seems as if it will be much larger than earlier thought:

Experts say encountering E.T. would pose religious dilemmas, especially for Christians
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The discovery of intelligent aliens would be mind-blowing in many respects, but it could present a special dilemma for the world's religions, theologians pondering interstellar travel concepts said Saturday.

Christians, in particular, might take the news hardest, because the Christian belief system does not easily allow for other intelligent beings in the universe, Christian thinkers said at the 100 Year Starship Symposium, a meeting sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to discuss issues surrounding traveling to other stars.

In other words, "Did Jesus die for Klingons too?" as philosophy professor Christian Weidemann of Germany's Ruhr-University Bochum titled his talk at a panel on the philosophical and religious considerations of visiting other worlds.
Read more at: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44749017/ns/technology_and_science-space/#.TpS2GLK-x_c
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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2011, 04:49:36 PM »
It would actually explain a great deal of our history to me. The flaming wheel in the sky for example. But I have a question. Is there something they are not telling us? Why would the government spend any money at all even discussing the possibility of encountering something we have zero proof of existing? Does D.A.R.P.A. also discuss what our protocols should be if we encounter God during our space travels?

Edit:

Did they happen to discuss who was going to be taking us on these little adventures?
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2011, 04:59:53 PM »
Why would the government spend any money at all even discussing the possibility of encountering something we have zero proof of existing

Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
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Online rev45

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2011, 05:08:28 PM »
I posted this link in a thread in the Science section and I'll post it again.  According to this author's Biblical research, Earth was a part an interstellar trading group.  Where he finds the scriptural support for this idea I can't seem to find. 
http://www.supernaturalufo.com/index/newsid/5402/aliens-or-demons-

I've also seen on some of the religious channels, discussions on why if there is intelligent life out there that they are demons.  The one I can vaguely remember was on a show called "Supernatural" but I can't seem to find the video of the discussion. 
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2011, 05:11:03 PM »
The one I can vaguely remember was on a show called "Supernatural" but I can't seem to find the video of the discussion. 

I've seen every episode of Supernatural, and they claim no such thing. In the sixth season they say that there's a "direct line between ET's and fairies", but fairies are not demons, just another kind of monster

Unless we're talking about two different shows
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

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Online rev45

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2011, 05:25:47 PM »
I've seen every episode of Supernatural, and they claim no such thing. In the sixth season they say that there's a "direct line between ET's and fairies", but fairies are not demons, just another kind of monster

Unless we're talking about two different shows
Yea, I was wrong.  It was a show called "It's Supernatural" hosted by Sid Roth.  Still can't find the clip I'm thinking of.
http://www.sidroth.org/site/PageServer?pagename=tv_itssupernatural
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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2011, 05:37:35 PM »
Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?

Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2011, 05:49:57 PM »
Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
Of course it isn't proof positive.  But the probability of there being no other intelligent life in a universe with 300 billion galaxies is so low as to be disregardable.  The fact that it happened once doesn't say anything about the actual likelihood of it happening again, but even if it only happened once per galaxy, that's still 300 billion potential intelligent alien species, albeit ones we aren't likely to ever meet.

Which is really the point.  Whether there are or aren't intelligent aliens out there, it seems far less likely that they would have come here, giving us proof of their existence.

Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2011, 05:54:47 PM »
Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
Of course it isn't proof positive.  But the probability of there being no other intelligent life in a universe with 300 billion galaxies is so low as to be disregardable.  The fact that it happened once doesn't say anything about the actual likelihood of it happening again, but even if it only happened once per galaxy, that's still 300 billion potential intelligent alien species, albeit ones we aren't likely to ever meet.

Which is really the point.  Whether there are or aren't intelligent aliens out there, it seems far less likely that they would have come here, giving us proof of their existence.

Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2011, 06:23:31 PM »
Let me put it another way. If our government is spending our money to discuss the remote possibility that we might encounter intelligent life and what the implications may be despite the fact that we have seen no evidence of said life, then what is the problem with arguing Pascal's Wager?
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2011, 09:00:25 PM »
Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
The odds of there being a creator have nothing to do with the odds of there being other intelligent species somewhere in the universe.  Furthermore, we have no evidence of such a creator[1], whereas we do have evidence of at least one intelligent species.  Also, the principle of mediocrityWiki.  As for the latter, Hawking radiationWiki[2].

Let me put it another way. If our government is spending our money to discuss the remote possibility that we might encounter intelligent life and what the implications may be despite the fact that we have seen no evidence of said life, then what is the problem with arguing Pascal's Wager?
Let me see if I am understanding you correctly.  You believe that since we have no evidence of any intelligent aliens, that we should not spend money in discussing the subject at all, because it is the functional equivalent of Pascal's Wager?  I have to disagree.  First off, we have a fairly strong conjecture that there is intelligent life besides us in the universe.  We do not know how common it might be; we could have a Star Trek scenario (hundreds or thousands of intelligent alien species in our galaxy), or we could be the only one in this galaxy.  Because we can't know for sure, we should not arbitrarily decide to exclude a scenario from consideration.

As far as it being like Pascal's Wager, I don't see how the two relate.  Pascal's Wager is a false dichotomy, suggesting that there are only two options and thus that we should pick the most beneficial of the two.  That doesn't apply to a discussion about aliens, because there are a number of possible options that would need to be considered.  It isn't just a matter of "will we run into aliens or won't we?"
 1. Excluding the nonsensical stuff propounded by intelligent design/creationist proponents to try to argue against the basis of evolutionary theory.
 2. Note that the particle/antiparticle pairs hypothesized by Hawking don't need a specific cause in order to happen.

Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2011, 10:59:59 PM »
The odds of there being a creator have nothing to do with the odds of there being other intelligent species somewhere in the universe.
Why not?
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Furthermore, we have no evidence of such a creator[1]
 1. Excluding the nonsensical stuff propounded by intelligent design/creationist proponents to try to argue against the basis of evolutionary theory.
Exactly! We also have no evidence of intelligent alien life. I accept the fact that we have no evidence for a creator with your caveat. That is why I am arguing against the fact we are spending tax payer money on exploring the prospect of encountering intelligent life elsewhere based on the exact same lack of evidence.
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whereas we do have evidence of at least one intelligent species.
One instance does not a routine occurrence make.
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Also, the principle of mediocrityWiki.
The principal of mediocrity is a heuristic. Fine. One universe that we know of, nothing special, one planet within observational limits that actively sustains life, fine nothing special. One species on this planet that achieved self awarness, fine nothing special. I get it. However, the whole thing is based on certain assumptions. How can we assume there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe if we have never observed it?
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As for the latter, Hawking radiationWiki[2].
 2. Note that the particle/antiparticle pairs hypothesized by Hawking don't need a specific cause in order to happen.
That is still theoretical science and proves nothing…yet. It is equivalent to saying “I don’t know, what about this?”
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Let me see if I am understanding you correctly.  You believe that since we have no evidence of any intelligent aliens, that we should not spend money in discussing the subject at all, because it is the functional equivalent of Pascal's Wager?
Yes, that is what I am saying. More specifically, though, I am saying that with all the other problems in the world at the moment we should not be spending tax dollars on it.
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I have to disagree.  First off, we have a fairly strong conjecture that there is intelligent life besides us in the universe.
Oh yeah? Well I have a fairly strong conjecture that some sort of god created the universe. 
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We do not know how common it might be
Of coarse we don’t
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Because we can't know for sure, we should not arbitrarily decide to exclude a scenario from consideration.
It’s fine for personal contemplation I suppose but keep my tax dollars out of it.
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As far as it being like Pascal's Wager, I don't see how the two relate. Pascal's Wager is a false dichotomy, suggesting that there are only two options and thus that we should pick the most beneficial of the two.
Either there is or there isn’t intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. There are only two options. D.A.R.P.A. is hedging a bet that there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. Why? Because it happened this one time on our planet? What is the benefit of spending tax payer money on talking about something that there is no evidence of?
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That doesn't apply to a discussion about aliens, because there are a number of possible options that would need to be considered.

I don't even want to go there.
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It isn't just a matter of "will we run into aliens or won't we?"
Now you are assuming that it is inevitable that we WILL in fact encounter intelligent life?
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That doesn't apply to a discussion about aliens, because there are a number of possible options that would need to be considered.
This is so absurd that I almost smote you for it. There are only two options when it comes to intelligent alien life and the only reason Pascal's Wager wouldn't apply is if it was shown that intelligent alien life did, in fact, exist. THEN there would be a number of possible options to consider dealing with them and the implications of their existence to the Christian god.

I was serious about the question of odds. I don’t understand how odds are calculated. I understand that within a universe this large there is the distinct possibility that life evolved elsewhere. However, have we seen any other example of spontaneous creation which resulted in the thing which was spontaneously created growing and expanding? If not, how can we infer that this universe was the exception to the rule?


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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2011, 11:02:10 PM »
Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?

All the proof I need that God created the universe is in the trees...is that not proof enough?
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #13 on: October 12, 2011, 12:09:47 AM »
Why would the government spend any money at all even discussing the possibility of encountering something we have zero proof of existing

Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?
plus it is a good way to funnel money to the people who got you elected.......think of all the Government agencies your money goes to.
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2011, 12:10:56 AM »
Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?

Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
So you are saying God is real and this is the ONLY planet in the universe with life on it?   Will there be a car accident in your neighbourhood today? odds are there will be.....do I have proof NO,will it happen....I am almost sure it will.

 Spending money on ET is pointless.....but saying because there is no proof means there probably is no life.... is a little out there
« Last Edit: October 12, 2011, 12:15:57 AM by 12 Monkeys »
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2011, 12:17:06 AM »
 or were you being a smart ass....if so I aplogize
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2011, 12:57:22 AM »
Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?

Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.

Because the odds of a highly unlikely event (like the random appearance of life) increase with the number of places it can occur in.[1]
In the 13+ billion year old universe with 300+ billion galaxies, I'd say the odds are 100% for there being intelligent life on other planets

Zero? The near-infinite universe with over 300 billion galaxies isn't proof enough?

All the proof I need that God created the universe is in the trees...is that not proof enough?
 1. Note that I don't know if this is properly explained, but it's the best I can do

Unless your god grows on trees, making it a paradox since it appeared after the universe it supposedly created, no
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Offline Noman Peopled

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2011, 08:12:14 AM »
Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
Virtual particles. Observed as the Kasimir effect.Wiki
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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2011, 09:48:44 AM »
Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
Virtual particles. Observed as the Kasimir effect.Wiki

I think you meant Casimir effect

These examples are great and all, but they don't answer the question of ODDS and it doesn't demonstrate the birth of an expanding universe.
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #19 on: October 12, 2011, 09:51:34 AM »
Exactly! We also have no evidence of intelligent alien life. I accept the fact that we have no evidence for a creator with your caveat. That is why I am arguing against the fact we are spending tax payer money on exploring the prospect of encountering intelligent life elsewhere based on the exact same lack of evidence.

Lack of evidence, yes. But the hypothesis holds some merit, no?

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Yes, that is what I am saying. More specifically, though, I am saying that with all the other problems in the world at the moment we should not be spending tax dollars on it.

Not going to argue that point.

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Either there is or there isn’t intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. There are only two options. D.A.R.P.A. is hedging a bet that there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe. Why? Because it happened this one time on our planet? What is the benefit of spending tax payer money on talking about something that there is no evidence of?
 

To learn more about our universe, and our place in it.

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and the only reason Pascal's Wager wouldn't apply is if it was shown that intelligent alien life did, in fact, exist.


We already KNOW life exists, as we see it on our own planet. Unlike gods, there is actual evidence of life, so by default, we may indeed presume there to be extraterrestrial life elsewhere in the 'verse. Whether or not spending money looking for said life will be a good ROI is up for debate.
Actually it doesn't. One could conceivably be all-powerful but not exceptionally intelligent.

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2011, 09:52:18 AM »
These examples are great and all, but they don't answer the question of ODDS and it doesn't demonstrate the birth of an expanding universe.

It wasn't meant to answer that, it was meant to answer
How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2011, 10:00:45 AM »
These examples are great and all, but they don't answer the question of ODDS and it doesn't demonstrate the birth of an expanding universe.

It wasn't meant to answer that, it was meant to answer
How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?

I know it looks like I'm moving the goal posts here, but the whole context of the question was in relation to the universe. So little particles whose existence produces nothing is hardly a qualified example to illustrate how a universe can suddenly pop into existence.

Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
Of course it isn't proof positive.  But the probability of there being no other intelligent life in a universe with 300 billion galaxies is so low as to be disregardable.  The fact that it happened once doesn't say anything about the actual likelihood of it happening again, but even if it only happened once per galaxy, that's still 300 billion potential intelligent alien species, albeit ones we aren't likely to ever meet.

Which is really the point.  Whether there are or aren't intelligent aliens out there, it seems far less likely that they would have come here, giving us proof of their existence.

Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2011, 10:05:22 AM »
I know it looks like I'm moving the goal posts here, but the whole context of the question was in relation to the universe. So little particles whose existence produces nothing is hardly a qualified example to illustrate how a universe can suddenly pop into existence.

Please explain to me, exactly, how the size of the universe and the number of galaxies is *proof* positive that other intelligent life forms exist. I really want to know.
Of course it isn't proof positive.  But the probability of there being no other intelligent life in a universe with 300 billion galaxies is so low as to be disregardable.  The fact that it happened once doesn't say anything about the actual likelihood of it happening again, but even if it only happened once per galaxy, that's still 300 billion potential intelligent alien species, albeit ones we aren't likely to ever meet.

Which is really the point.  Whether there are or aren't intelligent aliens out there, it seems far less likely that they would have come here, giving us proof of their existence.

Well then, what are the odds that the universe had a creator? How often have we observed anything spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?

Bold mine. The question seemed pretty clear to me. You asked when had we observed ANYTHING[1] spontaneously pop into existence without a cause
 1. Emphasis on ANYTHING
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

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Offline Samuelxcs

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #23 on: October 12, 2011, 10:13:23 AM »
Maybe God is an extraterrestrial on a planet somewhere. Can't be sure though.
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #24 on: October 12, 2011, 10:16:41 AM »
Maybe God is an extraterrestrial on a planet somewhere. Can't be sure though.

Then by ANY definition of a god, that would just make it another being in the universe, bound by its laws and clearly not its creator[1]
 1. Assuming for a second it had one, despite the evidence to the contrary
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
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Offline Samuelxcs

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #25 on: October 12, 2011, 10:19:16 AM »
Heaven could be another planet, universe or dimension. We don't know for sure, until we eventually die. Don't know why a God would be on a planet though if God is not bound by laws. We should try to imagine what created God itself, it could help in some way.
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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #26 on: October 12, 2011, 10:20:37 AM »
Heaven could be another planet, universe or dimension. We don't know for sure, until we eventually die. Don't know why a God would be on a planet though if God is not bound by laws. We should try to imagine what created God itself, it could help in some way.

Now you're just being ridiculous. A god, by any definition of it, requires two things:
A - Creating the universe
B - Having no cause whatsoever
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
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Offline Mr. Blackwell

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #27 on: October 12, 2011, 10:20:51 AM »
Bold mine. The question seemed pretty clear to me. You asked when had we observed ANYTHING[1] spontaneously pop into existence without a cause
 1. Emphasis on ANYTHING

This is one of those situations where you can either give me the benefit of the doubt or not. I was at work while trying to engage in this conversation yesterday. There are, from time to time, distractions. This is what I thought would be understood based on the context of the conversation.

"How often have we observed anything like a universe spontaneously pop into existence without a cause?"

Which is the bases of my question about what are the ODDS that a universe would pop into existence without a cause.
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Offline Samuelxcs

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Re: If intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what about God?
« Reply #28 on: October 12, 2011, 10:21:31 AM »
If a God requires no cause (how would that be possible?) and creating the universe, why?
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