Archive for May 4th, 2012

May 4th, 2012

Occam’s Razor and the Cosmological Argument

by Max Andrews

Today, we look back on the ancients and ridicule them for thinking that volcanic eruptions were the result of the will of the gods.  We now know the geological structure of the planet and how tectonic activity functions and tends to behave in certain areas and layers of the earth.  We can see the effect of the volcano’s eruption and extrapolate the causes to the movement of the iron core of the earth.  Our scientific knowledge in the field of geology and volcanology have progressed since the ancients.  So, has our scientific knowledge of the universe, of all that there is, progressed to the point that we can explain all that there is without having to invoke an uncaused causal agency?  First, before one proceeds with any scientific account for an explanation, one must notice the metaphysical aspect of the question.  This question is a philosophical question, not a scientific question.  Can we extrapolate all causes to have the first cause be self-caused?  Using something within the system of “all that there is” to explain the system itself (“all that there is”) is circular.  The whole notion is self-defeating.

May 4th, 2012

Antigravity and an Ekpyrotic Universe

by Max Andrews

I found an interesting paper on the big crunch that may help. It focuses on a non-singular model. In essence, after the big crunch the universe is still something, it doesn’t go out of existence. They’re, of course, setting up an ekpyrotic model. They have an isotropic and anisotropic model. The isotropic has a universe out of control, seemingly, and the anisotropic is very uniform in behavior. I thought it would have been the other way around. What seems to occur after the crunch is that the antigravity, cosmological constant, inverts the universe, ever so briefly, prior to re-expansion. Just like the energy of a rubber band increases when stretched out with the tendency to snap back in on itself so does the antigravity function this way. Why it’s so much shorter when crunched and inverted I don’t know.

May 4th, 2012

An Argument for Libertarian Free Will

by Max Andrews

Humans possess a certain level of libertarian freedom, prima facie.  The arguments supporting the free will are the evidence of human volition, moral accountability, and moral duty.  In the end, there are no good reasons to believe the contrary.  By libertarian freedom I mean that our freedom is a derived freedom, humans are not completely independent or completely autonomous.  In Molinism, unlike Calvinism, God is completely sovereign over the eternal destinies of a world of libertarian free creatures who have, in Augustinian terminology, “free choice” and not merely “free will.”  MacGregor explains that for Augustine, “free choice” (i.e. libertarian free will) entailed the freedom to choose between opposites in both the physical and spiritual realms.  Thus fallen humanity, by virtue of the imago Dei, can freely choose whether or not to respond to God’s prevenient grace.  By contrast, Augustine defined “free will” (i.e. compatibilist free will) as the ability to choose without any external constraint between the options compatible with one’s nature. [1]

May 4th, 2012

Evidence that Can be Used in Design Arguments

by Max Andrews

The list below contains several different evidences one could use in approaching and formulating a design or fine-tuning argument.

  1. The universe had a beginning, the standard model of the big bang.
  2. Einstein’s general relativity and the general property of FLRW (Friedmann-Lemaître-Robertson-Walker metric)
  3. Hubble expansion
  4. Gamrock’s prediction of CMB (1948)
  5. Penzias and Wilson CMD (1965)
  6. Hawking-Penrose singularity (1960’s)
  7. Thermodynamics
  8. Nucleosynthesis of light elements
  9. Inflationary cosmology
  10. BVG theorem (2003)
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