I wanted to put this question out there to see how strongly everyone feels on this subject. Being that most of us trust in scientific fact and reasoning, I was wondering if everyone is absolutely, undeniably, 100% sure that a god doesn't exist.  I personally take into account that there is no proof of any cosmic creator so therefore I am about 99.9999% sure that there is no god. However we all agree that science is an ever evolving field and I don't think that there will ever be any proof to support the existence of a supreme being, but I can't be 100% sure until there is concrete proof against one. I would like to know what all of your thoughts on this.  

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Trying to posit, prove or imagine what happened before something that has always existed as long as time can be said to have been is useless. A strong awareness of analytic techniques and their epistemological foundations can tell us absolutely nothing about the origin of the universe itself. Those things presuppose existence. They cannot be used to demonstrate something outside or before existence.

Not only did I not say, nor do I believe, that my analytical approach will be too inflexible to handle high level questions, I think it is particular suited to do so. And no one's analytical approach can 'handle' irrational questions like those regarding the creation or what came before the universe.

There is no dissociation necessary to properly reflect on one's worldview. In fact, I would say the opposite. A proper orientation is toward objective reality. I properly consider as many possibilities as I can think relevant and then I subsequently discard and reject those that cannot be or do not integrate without contradiction.

And I also never said I can see the whole universe or have it all. I did say that that is impossible, though.I am aware of the limitations of human cognition and perception. And I that accept them for what they are, limitations, not evidence of the possibility of magic.

I'll be more direct:

1. You have no proof here that time 'started' at the initiation of the Big Bang. Some current theories allow for cyclic Big Bangs, and thus an extended timeline.


2. I'm the one calling your approach inflexible because your argument hasn't progressed from reactive exclusion. How would you treat something like String Theory? Or complex numbers? Or infinities? Mathematics regularly violates your approach's 'inviolable' boundaries, so what should I do with that?


3. So long as someone has a major personal stake in their worldview and they allow that to rule their thinking, it's not possible for them to honestly reflect on the limitations of their own ideas. Are you separated enough from your ideas to examine them impersonally?


4. I reject your belief that any data can be discarded. While each question has relevant information, I set aside the other data rather than eliminating it as 'useless'. While I understand the psychological categories leading to this difference in approach,  I was hoping that we could intellectually transcend those barriers.

Drake Everren,

I gotta nominate you for bs thrower of the year!

That was truly good.

Except I can throw it with actual math and physics to back it up, so the smell is arguably nicer.


I've never really bothered to deconstruct a cynical worldview in direct conversation, but I'm willing to discuss past it if you'd show the courtesy of not brushing me off.

It was a gratuitous comment. Sorry.
We can't be 100% sure there is no god - there will always be things outside of our ability to observe and measure (and anyway, it's impossible to prove a negative). But based on observations of the real world, where there is no evidence of any supernatural being's existence or interference with the real world, I think we can safely say that the chances of there being a god greatly approach zero - and can be taken as being equal to zero for all intents and purposes.
It's not particularly hard to prove a negative using logical exclusion. There's a long thread on it in the Philosophy forum, but here's the short version: "All electrons have negative electrical charges" is a positive statement you can prove directly. Combine that with the EITHER/OR constraint that charge is a net value (so it can be positive or negative, but not both at once) and you have also proven the negative statement "No electrons can have positive electrical charges." The only significant difference is that positive statements allow single-property analysis while negative statements require at least two-property analysis.

If you find an electron with a positive charge, you will re-classify it as a proton.  I have--you read it here first--discovered a new subatomic particle which I am tentatively calling a quarkerino because it has properties of both quarks and neutrinos.  Prove to me it doesn't exist.


The problem is not single-property or multiple-property analysis, but unfalsifiable claims of the supernatural and the miraculous.  Nearly everyone in the world (we atheists are a smallish bunch) believes in both.  Even many people who don't believe in the Judeo-Christian god believe in ghosts and fairies and such.  Prove they don't exist.  Then we can move on to Russell's tea pot.



It sounds like the real issue is what I'd call null statements of the form "X is conceptually possible but physically unsubstantiated." These kind of statements are a necessary stopgap between expectations and actualization, but they are relentlessly misunderstood by most arguers.


Null statements can be refuted by the simple recognition that they are empty claims, so they have no bearing on anything physical and they have no power over other ideas. They are nothing more than floated expectations until a positive or negative statement can be made. Intellectually, null statements are like prehensile tails or inactive DNA; it's just refuse that gets carried along in the wake of living things. 


Despite the obvious issue that your quarkerino can be refuted by logical contradiction, it has the same fundamental problem as ghosts and fairies and such: they don't have any noticeable impact whatsoever on the rest of the (non-believing) world, so they're simply irrelevant to everyone else. The ultimate demise of null statements is obscurity.

Which pretty much brings us back to my original assertion that you can't prove a negative - unless you change definitions or play silly word games. So, to say "there is no god" is a negative statement that can't be proven or disproven, unless you look everywhere in the universe (I'm limiting the applicable zone to reality). However, the statement "there is a god" is relatively easy to prove. Just show evidence of any god at work in the real world. Any evidence.

Hi Len,

It can be proven there is no Omnipresent God.

Just look in front of you, to the left of you and to the right of you, behind you, up and down. You will not see him. You can do this experiment at home or in the office, in America or Saudi Arabia. And at any time. You will never see the omnipresent God.

For me this is proof there is no Omnipresent God.


But he's invisible - and he's standing right next to that invisible pink unicorn there ;-)



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