Although this post has many many replies, I feel I need to add my 1/50th of a dollar. Basically "only the Sith deals with absolutes". Leave the absolutism to the zealots and the fanatics. Nobody can with 100% certainly know the outcome of anything, but as had been said - we can predict, based on past patterns and experiences, outcomes with very high confidence.
Do you exist god? Answer yes in the brackets. Waiting for God to fill in the blank here: [ ]? Any answer implies yes, and all blank answers imply no. If you are 100 percent certain god does not exist, you need not check back for the reply!
MK, I was responding to your latest comment re evolution and origins.
The best candidate for a "structural procedure" requiring no intelligence would be the conservation laws (there are more yet to discover at different levels) that define boundaries and restrictions, e.g., self-assembly at the nano-level is all about conservation law. It's all combination after that.
Like Dawkins, I'm a 6 on the spectrum of theistic probability. The existence of god can't be proven any more than it can be disproven. However, given the astonishing lack of evidence for a god, and the fact that the only thing that the monotheists have are books that were written 2,000 years ago (the Qur'an was completed nearly 1,400 years ago) and by largely illiterate Bronze age shepherds obsessed with blood and racial and ritual purity does nothing to make the case for god. If there is a god, it is likely more that of Spinoza or the like: A deity that brought everything into being but has as much interest in what happens on the surface of our little blue marble as it does in two galaxies colliding.
For me, the question of whether there's a god is immaterial. There is no evidence on either side, with the burden of proof being much higher for the theists than for the non-theists. After all, they have to prove the existence of something that can't be seen or experienced, aside from a "sure feeling that He does" (i.e., subjective). Therefore, I am an agnostic atheist: I don't know if there is a god, but there probability of there being one is extremely low. I'm open to new evidence, but so far nothing convincing has been brought forward. And I grew up fundamentalist so I know all the proofs and the ways of dreaming up "evidence" for god.
If I'm going to waste my time on a fiction, I'm going to waste it on something that's well-written and well-conceived instead of on the literary mess that is the Christian bible.
I won't say 100% because claiming that would make me a bad atheist. I will say that there is a possibility that a god or gods exist. about .0001% rounded up of course. However that probability is for all deities, not just the christian one.
I am 100% certain there is no God, supernatural, or afterlife. As Bertrand Russell asked, "Where did God come from?" Any answer creates the question of where the subject of that answer came from and so on resulting in an infinite regress. To suggest that an eternal, all powerful intelligence has always existed beggars my imagination to the point I have to say that logic is logic and the limitations of my human mind are not here an impediment. Yes, it makes so much more sense that something has always existed that operates under some logic based set of rules. That is my inner Occam's razor talking.
Bravo, Dean. Bravo!!!
This is the point that so many in the opposition refuse to discuss or debate, countering only with a weak semantic trick such as "you can't know the unknowable" as though the insinuation that the topic of the nature of the first cause is beyond human comprehension protects the unknowable from analysis.
Or 'You can't prove a negative'. As if contextual knowledge about me being in Toledo is not sufficient to know that I am not in Miami. The law of identity, that which on all proof resides, is enough to know that god is not possible. We cannot and need not invoke science. Only reason. Not knowing what we don't know is not an open door to mysticism, but an impetus to do more exploring of this causal realm. Anything we find is necessarily not god. And then they play the stolen phoneme game, 'Well, how do you know what god is to me doesn't exist? Nature, or consciousness or physical laws or everything is god.' Yeah, well we have words for those concepts already.
Only reason is required. The argument of infinite regress trumps any claim that God lies beyond human comprehension and logic. For example, What created a God beyond human comprehension and logic?