As I explain in the above blog posts, we do in fact have powerful scientific evidence as well as philosophical arguments which show us that the whole of physical reality (space, time, matter, and energy) had an absolute beginning. 1. Sure, common-day objects such as tables and chairs "begin to exist" inthe sense that the arrangement of matter that people agree are "tables" and"chairs" begin to "exist" when someone arranges the matter in those preciseways. [1] Richard Dawkins, “The God Delusion” p. 158. Was There Really A Census During the Time of Caesar Augustus? Dawkins doesn’t dispute that the argument successfully proves the existence of an uncaused, beginningless, changeless, timeless, spaceless, and unimaginably powerful personal Creator of the universe. Answer: This objection attempts to state that although the universe had a beginning, some non-theistic explanation is just as possible (or even probable) as God. How so? In case anyone does not know the argument, it goes like this: 1) Everything that begins to exist has Equivocation: Here is the Kalam Cosmological argument again: 1. Of course, we Christians happen to believe this being is identical to the Christian God ontologically. This is not based on what we don’t know. 3. Get the first chapter of "Stealing From God: Why Atheists Need God to Make Their Case" in PDF. The Kalam cosmological argument is a modern formulation of the cosmological argument for the existence of God. CrossExamined.org is a non-profit ministry started in 2006 that conducts dynamic I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be An Atheist seminars on college campuses, churches, and high schools. This is the teleology, the purpose or end goal of bringing something into being. Answer: That science is not a metaphysical enterprise is, I think, absolutely correct. First, simply because some claim remains open to change does not mean that claim cannot be accepted as true. Rationality Rules said “A second problem that even we accepted the argument. Answer: It’s true that one needs some level of empiricism in order to judge many things. It is an objection to the application of the conclusion. But the point remains that such a being as described by this argument must exist”[2]. For the uninitiated, The Kalam Cosmological Argument is formulated as follows: Let’s look at each of Rationality Rules’ rebuttals. Created by. We mean all matter, energy, space, and time that ever was, is or will be in both steps 2 and 3. No creator could ever come into being because there would always have to be a creator before him to bring him into being. [2] William Lane Craig, “Deconstructing New Atheist Objections To The Arguments For God,” https://www.reasonablefaith.org/videos/short-videos/deconstructing-new-atheist-objections-to-the-arguments-for-god/. It originates with Aristotle's idea of the Prime Mover. 1): 1. Since then it has garnered much attention from theists and atheists alike. Answer: This is a fundamental misunderstanding of the claim. It would be a bizarre form of atheism, indeed an atheism not worth the name, which admitted that there exists an uncaused, beginningless, changeless, timeless, immaterial, spaceless, unimaginably powerful, personal Creator of the universe who may (for all we know) also possess the properties listed by Dawkins. But as I argue in my blog posts “Does The Multi-Verse Explain Away The Need For A Creator?” and “Is The Universe A Computer Simulation?” not to mention chapter 1 of The Case For The One True God, this Mother Multiverse scenario cannot be extended into past eternity. Test. When my patron Kevin Walker, asked me to make a response to this video, I was actually bracing myself for some pretty hard-hitting rebuttals, if not refutations. atized as follows : 2.10 If the universe did not begin to exist, then an infinite temporal regress of events exists. However, one absolutely needs reason to judge all things. However, two points remain. They are two main objections that i have for the kalam cosmological argument. There are good reasons given as to why the cause of the universe must be uncaused. I just don’t see how this is an objection against arguments, for it must use reasoning (of some metaphysically-ultimate sort, even if it’s a brute fact) in order to tell us reason doesn’t tell us the whole story. But the point that I’m trying to make here and now is that The Kalam Cosmological Argument, by itself, is pretty damn trivial. 1). Please try again. The kalam argument is an altered form of the cosmological argument.It is intended to circumvent the infinite regress problem contained within the traditional cosmological argument by altering the premises.The arguments dates back to the Islamic apologist Al-Ghāzāli (1058-1111). However, in every defense of The Kalam Cosmological Argument I’ve ever heard given, this is not where the argument stops. Rationality Rules indicts The Kalam Cosmological Argument for committing the fallacy of equivocation. Yes, the syllogism by itself only gets you to “The universe had a cause”, but why take Christian Apologists to task for unpacking the implications of that conclusion with additional arguments? To be fair, the proponents of this argument do indeed offer additional arguments in an attempt to assert that the cause of the universe must be without a cause. The word “kalam” is an Arabic word that denotes medieval Islamic theology.Muslim theologians, when Islam swept over Egypt in North Africa, absorbed the Christian thought that had been in those areas, like in Alexandria, which was … Was There Really A Census During the Time of Caesar Augustus? To have a beginning to one’s existence entails a before and after relationship. Draper raises several objections to Craig and Moreland’s Kalam argument: 1. I’ve given arguments for that above. In this context, "Thomistic" means "by Thomas Aquinas". RR says “they [Kalam proponents] assert that the cause of the universe didn’t begin to exist and therefore it didn’t have a cause, without adequately justifying why this cause is an exception.”. Everything that begins to exist has a cause of itsexistence. But since I do, I am free to accept the ramifications, unless one of the conditions for jettisoning an intuition apply. The Kalam Cosmological Argument is simply a desperate attempt by theologians to place the "God" word in what we don't know. Rationality Rules says that in the second premise, what we mean by the term “Universe” is the scientific definition of universe (i.e all matter, energy, space, and time), whereas in the conclusion, we employ the colloquial usage of the term “Universe”, meaning literally everything that ever was, is, and ever will be. To say otherwise would be to spout incoherence. I'm sure this is an argument most of us have heard of before and would like to hear some of your responses to it. The cause of the universe must be a spaceless, timeless, immaterial, powerful, supernatural, uncaused, personal Creator. And since no creator could ever come into being, the specific creator that brought our universe into existence couldn’t have come into being. Additionally, as I point out in my book The Case For The One True God: A Scientific, Philosophical, and Historical Case For The God Of Christianity a study of comparative religions demonstrates that only 4 religions are consistent with the Cosmological argument’s conclusion: Judaism, Christianity, Islam (that’s why Ghazali defended it), and Deism. All other religions involve either an eternal cosmos that have God or gods bringing order out of the eternally existing matter, energy, space and time, or else their god is the universe itself (pantheism). Now, granted, the syllogism doesn’t define this cause as “God”. This is just a pitiful objection to The Kalam Cosmological Argument. There are two sub-arguments which proponents of the kalam cosmological argument have given in defence of 2. However, abstract objects cannot produce any effects. RR says that Kalam proponents commit the special pleading fallacy. It's formulated as follows: Everything that begins to exist has a … The… It wouldn’t prove that the universe itself was without a cause. Philosophers realize that abstract objects if they exist, they exist as non-physical entities. Supernatural – “Nature” and “The universe” are synonyms. And I didn’t just arbitrarily assign these attribute’s to the universe’s cause, I gave positive arguments for why the universe’s cause must have these attributes. But it did not exist. Check your email. 1) Premise: Whatever begins to exist has a cause. Objection 3: It Commits The Fallacy Of Equivocation. In the example of the chair, the final cause would be the purpose of sitting. That is true of some versions, but not all. Learn. Charles Taliaferro, The Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology, ch. Rationality Rules complains that the argument doesn’t demonstrate the omniscience, omnipresence, or the moral character of the universe’s cause, but the argument was never designed to get those qualities. The claim of the first premise is “whatever begins to exist had a cause.” It’s often demonstrated by listing the causal principle “something cannot come from nothing,” or ex nihilo, nihilo fit. The whole must have the same properties as the parts that make it up. He seems to think that merely having to bolster the conclusion “the universe had a cause” with additional arguments is an invalid move. What is the Kalam Cosmological Argument? Paul Draper, “A Critique of the Kalam Cosmological Argument” 1. This being that is demonstrated to exist by this argument is consistent with The Christian God. 2. It is named after the kalam (medieval Islamic scholasticism) from which its key ideas originated. There’s a time before one existed and a time after one came into existence. You cannot be inside of something if that something did not exist until you brought it into existence. It seems bizarre to say that because some claim is in the purview of science, one should not claim it as true. When you do a conceptual analysis of what attributes or properties the universe’s cause must have, you do indeed end up with a being heavily resembling God. Now, RR can dispute whether premise 2 is true, but if I, William Lane Craig, Lee Strobel, Frank Turek, Hugh Ross, etc. The conclusion of The Kalam Cosmological Argument is that the universe came into being via an efficient cause (God), but with no material cause. God is defined as a supernatural entity. Example – “Science doesn’t know how life came from non life. Given that abstract objects are causally impotent, it, therefore, follows that an unembodied mind is the cause of the universe’ beginning. This is somewhat akin to claiming philosophy and science don’t mix, which is surely impossible (how can anyone come to a scientific claim or know anything without applying reasoning to what has been observed?). 3. One of my patrons brought this video to my attention and requested that I respond to it, so here we go. I facepalmed even harder at this objection than I did the previous one. The universe began to … The multiverse, aliens, whatever. I, nor has any proponent of this argument ever said, “Scientists can’t explain how the universe came into being, so it must be God” or anything of that sort. There’s a time before one existed and a time after one came into existence. The Special Pleading Fallacy occurs whenever you make an exception to an established rule without justification. Every contingent being (including things infinitely old) has a cause of its existence b. But if there was no infinite regression of creators begetting creators, then that logically brings us to an uncreated Creator, a Creator without beginning. Second, it commits an ignoratio elenchi, a fallacy of arguing for some-thing other than what was at issue (A 609/B 637). Another underwhelming objection. Therefore, the Universe had a cause. Rationality Rules indicts The Kalam Cosmological Argument for committing the fallacy of equivocation. The universe began to exist. Before I give my response, let me inform my readers that I distinguish causes via Aristotelian Causation. 2. In the first premise, it means literally everything that exists, whereas, in premise 2, it only refers to everything that American consumers purchase. To look at the evidence, see my blog posts “The Kalam Cosmological Argument” and “Is The Big Bang The Origin Of The Universe?”. 11 Objections to the Kalam Cosmological Argument, By using this site, you agree to our updated, The Historical Reliability of the Gospels, I Still Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, Articles on Intelligent Design / Evolution, A Simple Reason Why The Qur’an Cannot Be The Word of God, 10 Reasons to Accept the Resurrection of Jesus as an Historical Fact. Arg from contingency (one version of Cosmo arg) a. © Copyright 2014 CrossExamined.org. Unimaginably Powerful (if not omnipotent) – Anything able to create all matter, energy, space, and time out of absolutely nothing must be extremely powerful, if not omnipotent. The Kalam Cosmological Argument is one of the most popular cosmological arguments around today. Answer: It’s difficult to know what is meant by “well-established,” but it seems to mean something like “gained wide acceptance among philosophers.” But that’s a fairly poor way of evaluating an argument: a poll! The claim of the first premise is “whatever begins to exist had a cause.” It’s often demonstrated by listing the causal principle “something cannot come from nothing,” or ex nihilo, nihilo fit. The ancient philosopher Aristotle recognized that there are different types of causes. It is not the domain of natural theology to discuss, explicitly, the Christian God. Rationality Rules (RR) says “Even if the Cosmological Argument were accepted in its entirely, all it would prove is that there was a cause of the universe, and that’s it. All Rights Reserved. Well, how will we know if the reasoning behind this claim is telling us the whole story? CrossExamined.org is a non-profit ministry started in 2006 that conducts dynamic I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be An Atheist seminars on college campuses, churches, and high schools. William Lane Craig introduced the Kalam Cosmological Argument (KCA) in 1979. The universe began to exist. However, this is extremely ad hoc, and there is literally no reason to believe that if there is a multiverse, it is as complete as Lewis claimed (in fact, there’s decent reason to believe such a state of affairs is impossible if identity across worlds holds). Hence, the First Cause was the first. The argument isn’t intended to prove those things. This suggests that there wasn’t an infinite regression of creators begetting creators. In fact, the second premise (“the universe began to exist”) can be defended solely on rational argumentation. Answer: This is a fundamental misunderstanding of the claim. The word being equivocated on here is the word “everything”. We mean the same thing by “universe” in both steps 2 and 3. What causes this contingent being to exist must be a set that contains either only contingent beings or a set t… But why think a thing like that? 3) Conclusion: Therefore, the Universe has a cause. Visit the Christian Apologetics Alliance Now >>, I Don’t Have Enough Faith To Be An Atheist (Book). I don’t see why this is a problem, given the formulation of the argument. And hence, the proponents of this argument almost always employ additional arguments to reach their conclusions including the likes of Craig”. mean literally everything in both steps, then a charge of the fallacy of equivocation cannot stand. Objection 3: It Commits The Fallacy Of Equivocation, Objection 4: Nothing Has Ever Been Demonstrated To Come Into Being From Nothing, Evan Minton is a Christian Apologist and blogger at Cerebral Faith (, By using this site, you agree to our updated, The Historical Reliability of the Gospels, I Still Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, Articles on Intelligent Design / Evolution, “The Kalam Cosmological Argument Debunked – (First Cause Argument Refuted)”, The Case For The One True God: A Scientific, Philosophical, and Historical Case For The God Of Christianity, “Does The Multi-Verse Explain Away The Need For A Creator?”, “Is The Big Bang The Origin Of The Universe?”, https://www.reasonablefaith.org/videos/short-videos/deconstructing-new-atheist-objections-to-the-arguments-for-god/, A Simple Reason Why The Qur’an Cannot Be The Word of God, 10 Reasons to Accept the Resurrection of Jesus as an Historical Fact. A cosmological argument, in natural theology and natural philosophy (not cosmology), is an argument in which the existence of God is inferred from alleged facts concerning causation, explanation, change, motion, contingency, dependency, or finitude with respect to the universe or some totality of objects. Spaceless – Because space came into being and did not exist until this cause brought it into existence, the cause cannot be a spatial being. The KCA is just such an argument, by its very nature. It's nothing more than an argument from ignorance, a … Write. It would be like if someone argued “God made everything. Or in another words, it wouldn’t prove that first cause existed, which for a first cause argument is pretty damn ridiculous. Hume, cosmological arguments, and the fallacy of composition Both critics and defenders of arguments for the existence of God as an Uncaused Cause often assume that such arguments are essentially concerned to explain the universe considered as a whole. So what? There are two types of things recognized by philosophers that are immaterial: abstract objects (such as numbers, sets, or other mathematical entities) or unembodied minds. Quantum mechanics does not in fact posit something coming from nothing, but rather things coming from the quantum vacuum–which is not “nothing.” RR says “And this brings us comfortably to another critical flaw with the Kalam Cosmological Argument. 2) Premise: The Universe began to exist. It’s then the philosophy that takes over given this. Hence, if the First Cause was not really the first cause after all, then the first moment of time would already have existed. The universe began to exist. Las contradicciones filosóficas de la cosmovisión transgénero, El realismo modal, libre albedrío y el infinito actual en Dark. Nature did not begin to exist until The Big Bang. ‘The universe has a cause.’ The claim seems uncontroversial enough. Key Concepts: Terms in this set (40) Fallacy of composition. I discovered a YouTuber called “Rationality Rules” very recently. It only asserts “Therefore, the universe has a cause”. However, it does not therefore follow that science cannot be employed in a metaphysical claim. The Kalam cosmological argument (KCA) is an deductive argument, meaning that if the premises are true, the conclusion must be true. One of his many videos is “The Kalam Cosmological Argument Debunked – (First Cause Argument Refuted)” which you can watch here. The question RR should be asking is not whether additional arguments are needed, but whether the additional arguments given are good. William Lane Craig. To have a beginning to one’s existence entails a before and after relationship. It doesn’t even suggest, let alone prove that this cause was a being, and it certainly doesn’t suggest that that cause was a being that is eternal, omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, personal and moral. 4. “But wait!” I can hear one protest. The number 3 isn’t going to be producing any effects anytime soon. I mean, if I am insane or intuiting on things I have frequently been incorrect on, or if there are necessary or empirical truths that overcome my intuition, or even if I have a competing intuition that I hold stronger than the original, then fine: I should abandon it. For example, a chair’s material cause is the wood gathered from chopped down trees. 2. In fact, no creator in the entire infinite past series of creators could ever come into being because each would have to be preceded by a previously created creator. The Kalam Cosmological Argument and the Fallacy of Composition April 26, 2017 Jonathan MS Pearce Patheos Explore the world's faith through … Therefore, a natural cause (a cause coming, by definition, from nature) cannot be responsible for the origin of nature. An omnipotent entity. This means that each Christian, and each person, is rationally justified in accepting the KCA. If the objector wants to insist this is impossible because the First Cause existed before time, he must remember that positing a moment before time began is incoherent, so his objection cannot get off the ground. This is patently false. “Whatever begins to exist had a cause.” God did not begin to exist. Since the cause existed sans time, the cause, therefore, cannot have a beginning. We aren’t given any argument as to why it’s really the case that a potentially-successful model for the beginning of the universe shows no finite beginning. For one thing, why isn’t “all matter, energy, space, and time) not synonymous with “everything that ever was, is, or will be”? Design By Microhound. Timeless – Since time did not exist until The Big Bang, the cause cannot be inside of time. What is the fallacy of equivocation? Please try again. God Of The Gaps: Definition – God Of The Gaps is a fallacy in which God is inserted as an explanation for something that cannot, at the time, be conclusively explained by something else. Answer: Again, it must be noted that this is not an objection to either premise and hence not the conclusion. As for being the specific God I believe in, I’d recommend a look at The Case For The One True God. Therefore, if you’re picking a view about God based on the cosmological argument alone, your list of options consistent with the evidence is limited to just 4 options, Christianity being among them. Your free resource is on the way! Success! Uncaused – Given that the cause of the universe is timeless, the cause cannot itself have a beginning. “Just because you intuit this doesn’t mean I do.” Fair enough. These sub-arguments may be schem? It goes like this: “Whatever begins to exist had a cause; the universe began to exist; therefore, the universe had a cause.” The argument has several common objections, and eleven of them are listed here, along with some of my comments. We’re simply to take someone’s word for it, when we actually have physicists and scientists admitting these theories don’t work. The original Kalam cosmological argument was developed by Islamic scholars in medieval times based on the Aristotelian “prime mover” idea. This means that because the cause is non-spatial, it is therefore non-material. Richard Dawkins made this same complaint about the argument. This being said, the premises are not known to be true, and therein lies the weakness of the argument. If there is no space, matter cannot exist. There was an error submitting your subscription. Match. Although it hadnumerous defenders through the centuries, it received new life in therecent voluminous writings of William Lane Craig. You’d basically be saying “Nature caused nature to come into being.”. Two other arguments for the personhood of the universe’s cause can be given, and I’ve unpacked these in my book The Case For The One True God: A Scientific, Philosophical, and Historical Case For The God Of Christianity available on Amazon.com in both paperback and Kindle. The Kalam Cosmological Argument as oft stated by theists, most notably William Lane Craig, is as follows. Get the first chapter of "Stealing From God: Why Atheists Need God to Make Their Case" in PDF. Quantum mechanics does not in fact posit something coming from nothing, but rather things coming from the quantum vacuum–which is not “nothing.”. My face is hurting from all the facepalming I’ve been doing throughout watching this dude’s videos. The cosmological argument states that everything must have a cause, but I think it is implied that "everything" is everything of the natural world. STUDY. The first moment is itself identical with the first act of bringing the universe into existence. Answer: This is a bit of an odd claim. The fallacy of equivocation is when an argument uses the exact same word, but employs two different definitions of the word. Las contradicciones filosóficas de la cosmovisión transgénero, El realismo modal, libre albedrío y el infinito actual en Dark. The First Cause’s act of bringing the universe into existence is the first moment. In fact, we ought to accept our intuitions in the absence of these undercutters or defeaters, unless there is some reason to suspect our cognitive function is impaired. It does so, Kant thinks, because the proponent of the argument, having promised to It’s based on what we do know. Once it is established that the universe a transcendent cause, the apologist (William Lane Craig, Frank Turek, Lee Strobel, Myself) do a conceptual analysis of what it means to be a cause of the universe. As I explained in subheader 1, the cause of the universe must be spaceless, timeless, immaterial, powerful, uncaused, and personal. A “material cause” is the stuff out of which something is made. The argument is that “Whatever begins to exist has a cause.” The Kalam proponent would only be special pleading if he or she said that God began to exist, but made him the exception by saying he came into being uncaused. For God to come into being, His creator must have come into being, and before that creator could come into being, the creator before him had to come into being, and before that creator could come into being, the creator before him had to come into being, and so on back into infinity. The cause of its existence is something other than itself. Answer: First, it should be noted that this is not an objection to either premise, and thus one could claim this and still believe the universe had a cause. Therefore, God is Chinese”. I could also point out his appeal to the "singularity" that was there before the Big Bang is also a bare assertion fallacy. In that case, the origin of our universe would indeed not be “everything that ever was, is, or will be”. He doesn’t even say what the arguments are. Craig formulates thekalām cosmological argument this way (in Craig and Smith1993: chap. However, it must be noted that the KCA is an argument for natural theology, not revealed theology (cf. Answer: Presumably, this is the “Who created God?” problem (I can’t for the life of me think of any other problem). But otherwise, rational intuition is at the very core of reasoning. Sure, philosophers are more likely than your average person to be able to evaluate the argument properly, but let’s not pretend this is the only way to discover truth. Dawkins said it like this “Even if we allow the dubious luxury of arbitrarily conjuring up a terminator to an infinite regress and giving it a name, there is absolutely no reason to endow that terminator with any of the properties normally ascribed to God: omnipotence, omniscience, goodness, creativity of design, to say nothing of such human attributes as listening to prayers, forgiving sins and reading innermost thoughts.”[1] and Dr. William Lane Craig responded to it thusly: “Apart from the opening slur, this is an amazingly concessionary statement! On what grounds is thisassumption made? An efficient cause of the chair would be the carpenter who fashioned the chair from the wood. Design By Microhound. Therefore, the universe has a cause. The Universe began to exist. I am a Theist but want to learn more about Atheism, especially about its response to the Kalam Cosmological Argument. The answer: because this is the kind of claim that can be reasoned out. I wrote “Given that the cause of the universe is timeless, the cause cannot itself have a beginning. One may think these arguments fail, but to claim the KCA rests almost wholly on the science demonstrates a lack of familiarity with the basic defenses of the KCA’s premises. You cannot be inside of something if you are that something’s cause. If no one is justified in believing some metaphysical claim to be true unless a majority of philosophers accept it, then either no such majority will exist (because the vast majority will stick with this claim) or if such a majority exists it will be a “tipsy coachman” kind of group (where they are right for the wrong reasons). However, that's not what the premise is arguing. “Ad hoc!” one might cry. Your free resource is on the way! And atheism certainly is not consistent with the argument’s conclusion. The fallacy of equivocation is when an argument uses the exact same word, but employs two different definitions of the word. Success! But a before and after of anything is impossible without time. William Lane Craig’s recent form of the Kalam Cosmological argument: Whatever begins to exist has a cause. The KCA is structured as follows: Whatever begins to exist has a cause. I was like “Boy, I hope I can handle these responses.” I never expected the pitiful, flimsy objections RR put forth. Therefore, the universe has a cause. I kind of disagree with that. David Hume was perhaps more right than he could have known when he wrote of the human mind’s proneness to associate cause with effect regardless of whether it has a rational basis for doing so (which it ultimately does not); increasing evidence suggests that the principle of causality may well be something not … The objection here is that the inductive evidence is overwhelmingly against the idea that things can come into being without a material cause. He is the author of “Inference to The One True God” and “A Hellacious Doctrine.” He has engaged in several debates which can be viewed on Cerebral Faith’s “My Debates” section. Hmm, sounds far more like the God of Christian theology and the Bible than any of the other alternatives, doesn’t it? If you keep falling asleep in class, it’s no surprise that you don’t know what you’re talking about when it’s time to do your essay. Whatever begins to exist has a cause. One must suppose that atheists continue to illegitimately accuse the Kalam of committing this fallacy because they just don’t pay attention when it is explained to them. In fact, to the contrary, everything we know about cause and effect overwhelmingly and unanimously tells us that when a new thing is created it is due to the rearrangement of energy and matter that already existed… that is, everything is the result of Creatio Ex Materia (creation out of material).”. The matter i… The Kalam Cosmological Argument NOT Debunked, Objection 1: The Argument Doesn’t Support Theism. Material objects have mass and ergo occupy spatial dimensions. Second, the foremost proponent of the KCA, William Lane Craig, points out that the First Cause need not be in existence before time, as there is a first moment–the incoherence runs both ways. ... "The Kalam Cosmological Argument" | William Lane Craig at Georgia Tech - Duration: 1:18:13. So we needn’t call the personal Creator of the universe “God” if Dawkins finds this unhelpful or misleading. Cosmological Argument. It asserts that something can indeed come from nothing – a concept in philosophy known as Creatio Ex Nihilo (creation out of nothing), when this has never been demonstrated to occur. The classical Kalam cosmological argument for the existence of God consistsof six statements: This first premise has two major flaws: 1) It assumes that things can begin to exist. But a before and after of anything is impossible without time. Whatever begins to exist has a cause. One who engages in this fallacy is said to be "attacking a … Has RR even paid the slightest bit attention to apologists’ defenses of The Cosmological Argument? It is true that the conclusion of the particular syllogism under discussion is “The universe has a cause,” but that syllogism is just a subpart of an overall argument whose conclusion is that the universe must have been caused by a beginningless God. RR’s objection is pretty damn trivial. A second type of cosmological argument, contending for a first orbeginning cause of the universe, has a venerable history, especiallyin the Islamic mutakalliman tradition. Given that everything that has a beginning has something that caused it to come into being, and since Big Bang cosmology, the second law of thermodynamics, and the two arguments against actual infinites establish that the universe came into being out of nothing a finite time ago, it follows that a cause transcendent to matter, energy, space, and time must have caused matter, energy, space, and time (i.e the universe) to come into existence. Answer: This is a classic non-sequitur, on par with “some people have incorrect thoughts, therefore thoughts cannot be a reliable guide for truth.” The point is this: why should I doubt my intuition because someone else got theirs wrong? Hence, even if accepted, the argument doesn’t even remotely support theism.”. Surely this is a poor epistemology. That’s part of what it means to be abstract. So what we have is a timeless, unchanging (because it is timeless) First Cause whose first act is bringing the world into existence. 1. Perhaps RR is assuming The Mother Universe theory whereby The Big Bang was not the absolute origin of all material objects, but only the birth of one of many “baby” universes” that come into being inside of a much wider Mother Universe. What is the fallacy of equivocation? But obviously, here we are. 2.11 An actual infinite cannot exist. The fallacy of equivocation is when you use a word that has multiple meanings, but you're not clear on which meaning of the word your argument is using. If that is true, then it seems that the KCA’s truth implies God–not just any God, but the God of the Bible! If the argument … Of course. Answer: It’s very true that science is changing, and any claim should be held tentatively (even gravity–seems dubious though, right?). Whatever begins to exist has a cause, given that the universe began to exist, if follows that the universe has a cause of its existence. The Kalam Cosmological Argument (KCA) is this: Everything that begins to exist has a cause; The universe began to exist; Ergo, the universe has a cause ; This is basically a minor re-formulation of the classic cosmological argument, or First Cause argument. The Big Bang demonstrates just that. What is that? And (B) we give arguments for that. Abrahamic religions and Deism are consistent with this argument, but polytheistic, animistic, and pantheistic religions are not. I’ve given one of them above. It’s beginningless. God didn’t use previously existing material to manufacture the universe. That is one hell of a leap. It is said that by rational intuition, we mean the way we know “if X, then Y; X; Therefore, Y” is true. Hi i'm Josh and I am new to Atheist Republic. He merely complains that this cause hasn’t also been shown to be omnipotent, omniscient, good, creative of design, listening to prayers, forgiving sins, and reading innermost thoughts. There was an error submitting your subscription. Stretch and Challenge - The Kalam Cosmological Argument . For this response to work, one must adhere to Platonism, "the view that there exist such things as abstract objects—where an abstract object is an object that does not exist in space or time and which is therefore entirely non-physical and non-mental." The argument is fairly straightforward and enjoys intuitive support. A straw man is a form of argument and an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not presented by that opponent. However, all proponents of The Kalam Cosmological Argument hold that (A) God is uncaused, uncreated. ruby_alaska. Since the cause existed sans time, the cause, therefore, cannot have a beginning. Another type of cause Aristotle identified was Final Causality. The Kalam Cosmological Fallacy: A Brief History of the Failures of Intuition SisyphusRedeemed. The multiverse, for instance, really doesn’t solve the problem, but merely places it back one step. It must be spaceless or non-spatial. Temporal. The fallacy to it is that if everything must have a cause then God must as well. Check your email. PLAY. Only the Abrahamic religions (and Deism) teach that a God like the one described above brought all physical reality into existence from nothing. This leads to my next point; we do mean literally everything in both steps 2 and 3. Craig & Sinclair, "The Kalam Cosmological Argument," p. 188. Because material objects cannot exist unless space exists. Moreover, this is an impossible epistemology. Everything is made in China. First of all, there’s no exception to even be made! Second, the KCA does not rely entirely on science. Thus, RR says that steps 2 and 3 of the argument employ the same words with different meanings. Gravity. Indeed, why should I doubt my own intuitions even if I have been wrong in the past? Objection 2: It Doesn’t Prove The Universe’s Cause Was The First Cause. However, he doesn’t dispute the arguments. The KCA does not have science itself do the metaphysical work; rather, it simply uses the best and most current science to show that the universe most likely had a finite beginning and does not avoid it. A contingent being exists. It’s beginningless.” Another reason is that if you do not allow for an uncreated Creator, if you insist that God must have a Creator, you get thrown into an infinite regression. One may reply the multiverse could be identical with Lewis’ plurality of worlds, so that every logically-possible world actually exists, and it was impossible that any such possible world fail to exist. The Kalam Cosmological Argument has been popularised by William Lane Craig. But for this discussion, only efficient and material causes need to be distinguished. Trying to explain the origin of a framework based on things that are contained within it is a composition fallacy. Relates to Worldly rather than spiritual matters. The Bible describes God as spaceless (see 1 Kings 8:27, 2 Chronicles 2:6), timeless (1 Corinthians 2:7, 2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 1:2), immaterial (John 4:24, 1 Timothy 1:17, 1 Timothy 6:16), powerful (Psalm 62:11-12, Job 9:14, Matthew 19:26), uncaused (Psalm 90:2, Isaiah 57:15, 1 Timothy 1:17, Revelation 1:8), supernatural, and is a personal being (John 1:12, James 4:8). However, let’s take a look at some of the properties: timeless, spaceless, changeless (logically prior to the Big Bang), immensely powerful, and the creator of the universe. Arguments like the Kalam Cosmological Argument and the Teleological argument attempt to show how a belief in God is likely and not a "bare assertion." I really couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Good day, Mr Minton, I've happened to stumble upon your blog post on the Kalam Cosmological Argument, and I seem to have a few objections which I don't think you have ever addressed, whether in that blog post or in the blog category. The application of the conclusion demands that the First Cause precede, logically, all else. Spell. Original Blog Source:  http://bit.ly/2VrWpAg. This is a Straw-man Argument. Each objection has been dealt with by providing an answer. Flashcards. Of course we can claim it is true! It must be a timeless being. However, most of these examples (such as a multiverse) can really best be described as objections to the second premise, not the application of the conclusion. I admit that The Kalam doesn’t get you to the uniquely Christian conception of God, but it does get you to a conception of God that doesn’t match the majority of the ones most religions out there. There is a very good reason for stating this. Evan Minton is a Christian Apologist and blogger at Cerebral Faith (www.cerebralfaith.blogspot.com). Example – “The universe began to exist” (Premise 2 of the Kalam Cosmological Argument.) 2. But they would be mistaken. The universe is contingent c. Thus, universe has a cause of its existence Even Rationality Rules admits that Kalam proponents back up the assertion that the cause is uncaused by arguments, as you can see in the quotation above. I believe each objection can be satisfactorily answered so that one is justified in accepting the KCA. The conceptual analysis part of the argument is being totally ignored by RR. Mr. Minton lives in South Carolina, USA. The Borde-Guth-Velinken Theorem, as well as the impossibility of traversing actual infinites, bring us to an absolute beginning of literally everything at some point, whether that be the beginning of our universe, The Mother Universe, The Grandmother Universe, or whatever. Therefore, it may be argued that not only is jettisoning intuition wholesale unjustified, but actually irrational (by definition). The Kalam Cosmological argument is an argument for the existence of God. © Copyright 2014 CrossExamined.org. Personal – This is an entailment of the cause’s immateriality. Now, I would agree that our experience shows us that whenever something comes into being, it had a material cause as well as an efficient cause, thus rendering us with as much inductive evidence for material causation, but this inductive evidence can be overridden if we have powerful evidence that all physical reality came into being out of nothing a finite time ago. It was popularized in the western world by William Lane Craig in his book, The Kalām Cosmological Argument (1979). This is the formulation of the argument which I understand you to be using: 1. This objection is just as underwhelming as the previous two. This contingent being has a cause of its existence. All Rights Reserved. The overused “God Of The Gaps” objection. Immaterial – The cause’s non-spatiality entails immateriality. argument in the sense, apparently, of tacitly incorporating the onto-logical argument as a proper part (A 607/B 635; A 608–9/B 636–7). Moreover, The Bible credits Him with being the Creator of all physical reality (John 1:1-3). Then God must as well Cosmological arguments around today was without a material cause is non-spatial, does! Of bringing the universe must be noted that the cause existed sans time, the universe is timeless the! I do, I ’ d recommend a look at each of rationality Rules said “ a second that. Philosophy that takes over given this it only asserts “ therefore, the cause existed sans time, the of. Defense of the Failures of intuition SisyphusRedeemed objects can not be accepted as true being without material. 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