Saturday, November 3, 2018

Gods Needs Humans To Teach Him Science

I'm currently in the process of writing a book which discusses atheism as being the most rational and logical of all theistic positions, and the many failings of Christianity both theologically and in practice, as well as formulating my responses to IDHEFTBAA.

In the meantime, and as all good atheists should, I am refining my arguments to make both more general sense, and to make it good reading (if I'm going to write a book, I should at least make it worthwhile).

One of the thoughts I had yesterday while writing was this:

God needs humans to teach him science so God can in turn tell us humans how he created the universe.

There are some foundational premises to this argument, so let me begin.

1. The scriptures contain no scientific knowledge above what was commonly known or understood at the time. 

In the Bible (be it the Old Testament, New Testament, Koran or the Torah), there are no mention of atoms, no mentions of electrons (even though the human body actually produces electricity, and requires electricity to run it), heck, there's not even a periodic table.

As it stands, even a third-grade primary school child has more scientific understanding than the authors of the Bible.


2. The common scriptural understanding of how the universe began can simply be stated as creatio ex nihilo - the universe out of nothing, which was standard for the time - the people of that time knew nothing, and thus they wrote of nothing. 

However, as it stands, we don't know for sure how this universe began. All we know is that time itself had a beginning, and the universe is expanding, thus it must have had a point where it expanded from.

But to refute the creatio ex nihilo argument, twice:

1. Everything that exists in the universe, and everything that exists, comes from pre-existing material.
2. The universe exists.
3. Therefore, the universe came from pre-existing material (i.e. not from nothing)

And:

1. For something to come from nothing would require violating the known laws of physics.
2. We are yet to observe, document or find a way to create something that can/has violated the known laws of physics.
3. Therefore, we cannot claim that the universe's existence violated the known laws of physics.


3. As scientific knowledge advances, so too has our understanding of how the universe was in its earliest stages.

The earlier back in scientific history you go, the more likely you are to find people who believe in either a universe that has always existed in the current form it is now, or that the universe itself was simply created by magic (i.e. supernaturally violating the laws of physics).

It is only in the last few centuries that you start to see great advancements in cosmology, whereas back in the Dark Ages, the church was actively stifling scientific knowledge and advancement (Galileo, anyone?).
The church of the time was reading a book that didn't accurately reflect cosmology, and they were stopping people from accurately understanding it as well.


4. Theists who wish to harmonise God with science have taken that scientific understanding and tacked it onto a God-hypothesis, and have thus proclaimed “This is how God created the universe”.

Personally, from my time as a Christian, I read up on the Big Bang theory and told myself "This is how God created the universe", and I'm sure many theists do the same. We let God tell us what the scientists have worked out, then credit God for the discovery. Talk about confirmation bias.

However, how does God himself tell us how he created the universe? He doesn't tell us, except for Genesis 1:1 which tells us that God began.

It is because us humans have to devise the tools and equations to work the problem out in the first place - the scripture gives us nothing rational or foundational to go on - then when we come up with a reasonable hypothesis to explain why there is something rather than nothing, the theists who wish to harmonise God with science will grab that explanation, try to either speak on God's behalf and in defence of God, tell us "This is how God did it all along!".

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The only real out that theists have for them is to say that the Bible is not a science book, it is a theology book. I am OK with that out, but only if all theists recognised that, and I am shooting a hard glance at Creation Ministries International in particular.

But I personally don't see any reason why God, who knows everything and can do anything, can't have taught Moses the concepts needed to comprehend the beginning of the universe.
Sure, it may have been rough and arduous, but we're talking about God here. God can make the sun stand still, can cover an entire country in frogs, and can make a fully-formed human out of mud, but can't seem to find a way explain anti-matter, light years, neutrinos, the Higgs Boson, or even the concept of gravity to Middle Eastern semites.

And it would have been a wonderful testament to God - God is giving his chosen people knowledge which they could not have possibly understood or known, getting them to write it in his chosen book to communicate with humanity, and us rationalists would see that and go,  "Yeah, how could they have known that?".

But from what I can see, God needs humans to teach him science, so he can then tell us, by confirmation bias, how he created the universe.

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