Big bang blurb ...(universe now inflated beyond 15 characters)


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #21

@T_aquaticus

My point is that while Einstein was not a Christian and probably not an orthodox Jew, (but he might be considered a liberal Jew [it is not for me to say.) In any case I would consider him a believe in God if he met the criteria that I set, that is the intelligent Source of the universe.

Of course he did not believe that God created the universe through the Big Bang, and LeMaitre was reluctant to say this. I would say that his definition is open to that understanding, while yours is not.


(Mervin Bitikofer) #22

The fixation on trying to bundle Einstein into one category or another probably does not gain anything for anybody, even if one successfully made the case. It doesn’t really matter if Einstein can be shown to be “on your team” or not unless it is important to you to rack up as many historical trophies as you can. But if it is the crowd you need [even a highly select crowd of geniuses], then that may be a sign of other problems as far as Scriptures go.

But on the more interesting point of the rational and spiritual, Roger; --have you ever read the short story “The Cold Equations”? [by Tom Godwin] It is a rather heart-wrenching story about the heartlessness of pure numbers. A medical supply ship piloted by a lone individual has an exact amount of fuel calculated for the journey and landing [with no fuel to spare --the atrocity of such idiotic engineering must be granted for the purposes of the story]. A stowaway is found on the ship – just trying to hitch a ride to go see her brother at the destination. The pilot really likes her and hates what he has to do, but utlimately she has to go out the airlock before they arrive to land or else her extra weight will cause them to run out of fuel prematurely, crash and both be killed (and medical supplies perhaps destroyed). The story may be silly[ish] as one hopes that life rarely consists of such austere zero-sum scenarios, but the point being made is that a hyper rational universe is not necessarily (in fact probably not) a compassionate one. Rationality does not equal relationship. 2+2=4 can be a formula found useful by a genocidal murderer as much as by a compassionate missionary.

I see you have posted while I’m writing this … so I’ll sign this off for now.


#23

If I understand it correctly, the universe is the source of the intelligence within Pantheism. It’s the opposite of what you are describing. Einstein also believed that the body and mind were one in the same, and that there was no immortal soul. From what I can see, Pantheism is a materialist religion that sees reality as the divine:

“Pantheism is the belief that all reality is identical with divinity,[1] or that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent god.[2] Pantheists do not believe in a distinct personal or anthropomorphic god[3] and hold a broad range of doctrines differing with regards to the forms of and relationships between divinity and reality.”–Wikipedia

If you want to consider that a belief in God, then knock yourself out.

I’m not seeing which understandings or definitions you are trying to connect.


#24

Completely agree. Intelligence does not guarantee infallibility so it really doesn’t matter what Einstein ultimately believed. There have been many intelligent scientists, theologians, atheists, theists, and people of all religions over the decades. Lemaitre was a great scientist and a great christian, as imminent as any of the scientists of his age including Einstein.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #25

If reality is divine, then by definition reality is spiritual, not materialist.

My point which is most clear from the quote that you provided is that Reality is Rational. We can see this also from the Mind experiments that he used to develop his theories.

Matter does not think. Since the universe is composed of matter, the universe or Nature. Therefore the universe cannot think. Therefore the universe does not have a mind. Therefore Reality is not rational and has no purpose or meaning. This logical train of thought found in the book by Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity, which is the foundation of New Atheism. Here we have a logical view of a materialist universe without God, but sadly at the cost of the rational and the meaningful.

On the other hand when on goes the way of pantheism we solve the problem the rationality, because God is rational. While it is true that pantheism does not have an anthropomorphic God, because pantheism is a anthropomorphic God. Humans combine a mind and body, just as pantheism combines a mind and the universe.

Of course the name pantheism has theism in it. A pantheist is by definition a theist. Therefore it is clear that pantheism is not a materialist religion. It is a dualist religion or possibly an idealist religion, where everything is a hologram.

Humankind has wrestled with the relationship between the physical, rational, and spiritual. To grossly oversimplify reality into the material, the rational, or the spiritual is false. I see no evidence that Einstein fell into this trap. He was not a great theologian, but he was a sensitive human being.


#26

Not according to Pantheism.[quote=“Relates, post:25, topic:36851”]
Matter does not think.
[/quote]

That is a bare assertion that needs some evidence to back it.[quote=“Relates, post:25, topic:36851”]
On the other hand when on goes the way of pantheism we solve the problem the rationality, because God is rational.
[/quote]

It also goes against your previous argument. In Pantheism, matter thinks.[quote=“Relates, post:25, topic:36851”]
Of course the name pantheism has theism in it. A pantheist is by definition a theist. Therefore it is clear that pantheism is not a materialist religion. It is a dualist religion or possibly an idealist religion, where everything is a hologram.
[/quote]

Like I said earlier, if Pantheism belongs in the same club as Christianity then all the more power to you.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #27

@Mervin_Bitikofer

Before I became a theologian, I considered myself and still consider myself a historian. It is important and necessary to understand how we got to where we are. Einstein played a very important role in this, so it is important to know who he was and what he thought. That is why I study him and not to claim him for a particular team.

Now about the story that you told, yes it is true that math is impersonal, but since it is part of God’s world, it is good because it enables us to use the resources that God gives us.

The whole point that I have been trying to make is that Life/God’s Reality is not purely physical, nor purely rational nor purely spiritual. God made Reality a combination of these aspects and us a combination of these aspects and even God is a Trinity of three aspects of the divine Person.

You said that you would get back to me after you had let my model of Color to settle. Please work on that instead of bringing objections to my discussion with T.


(GJDS) #28

Pantheism is not a Christian belief - indeed the Christian faith differs radically in that God as the Trinity created everything from nothing, and thus the essence of God does not “make the creation” that we observe - God transcends the create order.

It is interesting to contemplate that the big bang theory, strictly speaking, cannot claim to establish a beginning, nor would theology speak of any beginning when referring to God, as He transcends time and space. We cannot speak of a beginning, before a beginning, although if we could determine a zero- time, we may speak of an after.

Einstein referred to the intelligibility of the Universe, as a mystery in that we as human intelligence are able to access the world - implying that for some reason that we cannot explain scientifically, we can access the created order. I think he did not describe himself as a theist, but I am unsure as to his view on Judaism.

Btw this view differs from the pagan Greek view of a rational principle in the creation (the so called Logos of pagan philosophy). Christianity refers to Christ as the Word of God (logos is translated as “word”).


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #29

Pantheism is one way that serious thinkers try to explain the relationship between the physical, the rational, and the spiritual. I hope that you would be one of these thinkers, but it appears that I am mistaken.

Pantheism does not say that Reality is material, because everyone agrees that God, Theos, unlike Nature can think. I hope that you don’t think that rocks can think.


#30

Why would you hope that I was a Pantheist? If I am not a Pantheist, how does that make me less serious when thinking about those relationships?[quote=“Relates, post:29, topic:36851”]
Pantheism does not say that Reality is material, because everyone agrees that God, Theos, unlike Nature can think. I hope that you don’t think that rocks can think.
[/quote]

From what I am reading, Pantheism does say that Reality is material. It says that God is material in that physical reality is God. It also says that matter can think since humans are made of matter. It is the material world that produces thought and God.


#31

I was talking more about Pantheism being on the believer or non-believer side of the fence. Personally, I define believers as those who believe in a supernatural deity, but other definitions are allowed. If people want to put Pantheists and Christians in the same category under “believer” that’s fine.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #32

I hoped that you would be a serious thinker, not a pantheist.[quote=“T_aquaticus, post:30, topic:36851”]
It says that God is material in that physical reality is God. It also says that matter can think since humans are made of matter. It is the material world that produces thought and God.
[/quote]

Your problem is that you start with a false observation and then proceed to explain this with circular thinking. You begin with the observation that Reality is purely material, and then assert that this material world produces the rational (thought) and the spiritual (God.)

P. S. Ordinary matter cannot think. Only evolved matter can think. Pantheists, like Einstein are clear the universe is rationally structured. It is obvious that humans did not structure the universe, but were structured by it. Therefor we cannot say that the rational structure of the universe comes from the universe and not from God, Who does not need to evolve to think.

Plato was a pantheist and pantheism lives in his philosophy and philosophy in general. They believed that the universe was eternal, which was the reason many, even Einstein, resisted the Big Bang. However the Big Bang pretty much spelled the end of pantheism and traditional philosophy.


#33

The problem is that you judge how serious someone is by how often they agree with you.[quote=“Relates, post:32, topic:36851”]
Your problem is that you start with a false observation and then proceed to explain this with circular thinking. You begin with the observation that Reality is purely material, and then assert that this material world produces the rational (thought) and the spiritual (God.)
[/quote]

Your problem is that you didn’t read my post very carefully. I was describing what Pantheists believe, not what I believe.[quote=“Relates, post:32, topic:36851”]
P. S. Ordinary matter cannot think. Only evolved matter can think. Pantheists, like Einstein are clear the universe is rationally structured. It is obvious that humans did not structure the universe, but were structured by it. Therefor we cannot say that the rational structure of the universe comes from the universe and not from God, Who does not need to evolve to think.
[/quote]

You are shifting the burden of proof again, and making bare assertions. It is up to you to demonstrate that the rationality of the Universe comes from God, and that God does not need to evolve in order to think.

Also, there is nothing fundamentally different about the matter that makes up humans and rocks. Matter is matter.


(GJDS) #34

I suppose we have our personal preferences - I must say that I find your comment amusing because for many years I have placed materialists/evolutionists in the category of believers, as differing from Christians who profess faith in God and salvation in Christ. Thus the divide is faith or absence of faith in God.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #35

Personally in some ways there is a more important division than between theists and atheists, and that is between those who take the meaning of life seriously and are serious in trying to work it out and those who do not take the meaning of life seriously.

I know that you cannot read my mind

There are two problems that arise when someone allows him or herself to become trapped in a circular argument that defies reason. The first is that this denies her or him the ability to seek the truth, and limits his or her ability to understand and appreciate the full beauty and diversity of the universe which is a personal tragedy.

The second is that the failure to seek after the truth limits the ability of people to be capable to understand and communicate with those who are trying to make sense of this world and bringing people together in common purpose. This is a social tragedy.


(Robert) #36

I believe the universe is eternal (everlasting) but I also believe in the Big Bang or Big Bane from membrane theory. Physics is at crossroads between Multiverse and Super Symmetry. The Higgs Bozon was supposed to point the way but unfortunately it didn’t. In a Multiverse there is an infinite (some would say 2 to the 120 power) number of universes with ours being just one. I think statistics supports a Multiverse environment because a Big Bang is highly probable in any one single universe (like ours) but highly improbable in a single universe environment. We may some day be able to sense the presence of another Multiverse through light lensing (which Einstein postulated) or gravity waves which LIGO detected. We have searched for the Super Symmetrical particles for a long time and to my knowledge have found none. A lot of research money has been spent on String Theory without a lot to show for it. Remember, The Bible tells us that in my father’s mansion there are many rooms (Multiverses), if it were not true I would have told you. Jesus pointed the way long before our modern astrophysicists.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #37

@Wildcat Robert,

Welcome to the discussion. Thank you for your comment.

Why do you believe that the universe is eternal, which would mean that it is infinite. Is that an assertion, or is there some sort of evidence behind it? I was always told that science says that it is not infinite.

There is evidence for the Big Bang. What evidence is there for the Big Bane?

I can understand that there may be some statistical evidence for the Multiverse, but I would say that this is very weak. There is no good statistical evidence to indicate the Donald Trump could be elected President, but he is.

I do not think that the words of Jesus that you quoted can be used to say that He prophesied the Multiverse. He was talking about Heaven and the fact that there is plenty of good room for all the saints.

I am not saying that we should stop doing research in areas where progress is questionable. I am suggesting that we should stop thinking that ideas are proven when they are only speculation.

There is tension between Christianity and Science. Science seeks timeless universal truth, while Christianity is based on historical specific truth. On the other hand Evolution brings history into nature and science. This is why evolution is so contentious, it is an area where Christianity and science overlap.

There is much to explore in this area, but sadly it is severely neglected.


#38

Then you should recognize the circular argument you are creating. You assume from the beginning that God created the universe, and then you turn around and use the universe as evidence for God.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #39

That is where you are mistaken. I do not assume that the universe is created by God, Assumptions are not examined, but beliefs are.

There are two aspects of this belief. The first is creation. This means A) the universe has a beginning, and

B) the4 universe is separate from God. Science and theology agree on this, so we can reasonably say that then universe is created as opposed to being eternal.

The second aspect of this is God. C) Is God as we know God through the Bible capable of creating the universe? Yes.

D) Is the character of the universe such as it reflects the character of God as we know God? This is the most controversial aspect, which we need to continue to study and discuss the character of the universe, however it is clear to me that the universe is basically good, or certainly much more good than evil. Also I find that God has left God’s Trinitarian imprint on the universe. We need to better understand the universe in this way, and really find it difficult for people to reject this out of hand.

Therefore I have given you 4 ways to prove this belief is false. You and others have provides no way to prove your assumption that the universe is solely physical is false.


#40

So your argument really boils down to the Universe having a beginning, correct? The rest seems pretty subjective or circular since I could just as easily write a story about any deity who can create good universes.