Coffee Space


Logic Against A Creator

All Knowing

An argument I had against the idea of having an all knowing ‘God’ in any religion would be that such an idea could be completely dismantled if you could find one point of failure your opposition agrees with. Any prediction made that fails can be used to dismiss the idea of an all knowing creator completely.

As a programmer, I think about it like the following:

0001 boolean[] predictions = new boolean[]{
0002   prediction1(),
0003   prediction2(),
0004   /* ... */
0005   predictionN()
0006 };
0008 public static void main(String[] args){
0009   boolean allKnowing = true;
0010   for(boolean test : predictions)
0011     allKnowing &= test;
0012   System.out.println("'God is '" + (allKnowing ? "" : "not ") + "all knowing.");
0013 }

If one case fails, the whole thing fails. If there is one contradicting prediction with another, it all fails. Of course, the larger the religion and the more material offered - the more likely it is to fail the basic test.

This is just one “special” case out of many, but it’s a step in the right direction to finding a definitive way of dismissing a creator without any argument for those who understand logic.

I did once get to the point where my logic was completely sound with one person, at which point the argument that “God exists outside of logic” was made. It makes it all rather pointless if when you have somebody on the edge of reason that they then flip towards the “God of the gaps”.

Predictive Models

Yet another argument against a creator is that of creating predictive models. Examples of arguments you will see:

The only way that a model can be predictive is if it can reliably show a signal above background noise. Here we shall go through an example:

  1. Get 1000 atheists in need and 1000 religious people in need of financial beneficiary.
  2. Allow the religious people to pray and “contact” their God.
  3. Flip a coin for each, deciding with a 50-50 probability as to whether they get the financial aid they require.
  4. Using the atheists as the control signal, see whether the religious people are statistically significantly better off than their counter-part group.

Of course, they will claim that their God does not want to be measured - to which point you can reply “awfully strange for a being that wants to be believed in to not want to leave any evidence of their actions, except a few unprovable scenarios”.

God Of Recursive Gaps

Yet another theory that religious people tend to use when confronted with the whereabouts of God, is that God is in some place where Science is still debating. This could be “in the sky” if we were discussing this a thousand years ago, or “in some extra dimension” if you’re talking to somebody clued up in the modern age. This God/s is always some place just out of reach, some place we are yet unable to explore.

This of course poses a problem that we can explore with a simple program:

0014 public static void main(String[] args){
0015   /* 1. We slowly discover more gaps than we solve */
0016   System.out.println("1. Result: " + process(100, 0.99));
0017   /* 2. The same number of gaps or we add at the same rate we remove */
0018   System.out.println("2. Result: " + process(100, 1.00));
0019   /* 3. Reduction in gaps */
0020   System.out.println("3. Result: " + process(100, 1.01));
0021 }
0023 private static double process(
0024   double currentGaps,
0025   double gapDiscovery
0026 ){
0027   for(;;){
0028     double temp = currentGaps;
0029     temp /= gapDiscovery;
0030     if(temp == currentGaps){
0031       return temp;
0032     }
0033     currentGaps = temp;
0034   }
0035 }

The first test is if we slowly add more gaps and remove them at a greater rate that than we add them. In the first example, we get the following:

0036 1. Result: Infinity

This implies that we slowly, but surely begin to know less and less about the world around us. The irony here, is that in knowing less, we actually know more as we become aware of what we don’t know. This actually means that as well as the gaps in the human race’s collective knowledge increasing, so does our knowledge of what we don’t know, meaning our knowledge is tending towards infinity, a.k.a knowing all there is to know. If this occurs, we become the Gods we are searching for.

I think it’s safe to say that this is not the scenario that religious people believe, as if we become Gods then our God would be redundant and unnecessary. If humans can become Gods, then there is unlikely a need for a God in the first place - we could be self creating.

We’ll skip the second test for a moment.

The result of the third test:

0037 3. Result: 2.47E-322

The third test show’s an exceptionally small number, tending towards zero. This is just a flaw in how programs themselves work - this value is actually zero given a computer of infinite computing power. This would imply that a God would tend towards having no available gaps to exist, leading to us knowing either there is or isn’t a God. This would break the concept of faith, as having evidence would mean that we have no need for faith, the whole idea of religion. So either God becomes part of Science, or we discover there is no God. This is the route that I propose most atheists will take.

The second result is the most interesting:

0038 2. Result: 100.0

This is the result that most religious people tend to follow, but has multiple flaws and will be broken into several points:

  • Most unlikely case: Both of the previously explored test cases represent infinite outcomes, whereas this scenario can only occur once. This case being true is exceptionally unlikely if all cases are equally likely.
  • The gaps are neither created nor destroyed: This has already been shown to not exist, as we have moved from the gap in the sky to the extra dimension. Gaps in our knowledge appear to be at least a sliding window or equal size.
  • The same amount of gaps are created as are destroyed: This means that we eventually end up with gaps in our collective knowledge that can not be explored any further due to some fundamental limitation. God cannot be found there, as if a God can influence matter in our known Universe then God is by definition measurable. If God existed in some unmeasurable place, then God couldn’t interact with our Universe.

Either the definition of God needs to change and it has to be accepted that a God can not be responsible for anything past creation of the Universe, or that God doesn’t exist in any of these gaps and can’t be found elsewhere, therefore not existing. The first option certainly makes any type of religion completely redundant, which is good enough for me.

Born Into Slavery

The first point in this is that because of “original sin”, all children as a result are born into sin (according to Christians) and therefore have to beg for forgiveness. Being born into a debt you only pay off when you die - is nothing short of slavery. The fact that this slavery is passed down from your supposed great, great, great, great, great, great, …, grand-father/mother (Adam and Eve) and somehow this debt has not been paid off yet is insane. How many people have to give up their lives to beg forgiveness for one person’s short-comings?

Then there is the point of the sin itself - the sin was to want more. You have to admire the way that God put something in the garden that would get them in trouble, is all knowing and can see the future, then gets pissed off that the thing he knew would happen, happened. If God does exist, he fails to understand himself on the most basic level.