Monday, 30 May 2016

The Great Petard

Try Harder

It turns out that Clint Eastwood is a profound cosmologist.  The best of the best, one may say.

The real question of the ages for the materialists and secularists is, Why does the universe exist at all?  For the Unbelieving cosmolgist it is a question inside a riddle, wrapped in an enigma.

David Berlinski rings the changes:
Oxford's Peter Atkins has attempted to address this issue.  "If we are to be honest," he argues, "then we have to accept that science will be able to claim success only if it achieves what many might think impossible: accounting for the emergence of everything from absolutely nothing."  Atkins does not seem to recognize that when the human mind encounters the thesis that something has emerged from nothing, it is not encountering a question to which any coherent answer exists.  [The Devil's Delusion: Atheism and Its Scientific Pretensions (New York: Basic Books, 2009), p.95f.]  
How have the materialist cosmologists fared?  About as expected.  The problem is sufficiently complex that the problem itself defies a simple description.  But we will put our materialist hat on and advance one anyway.  Since we know that all being is some sort of combination of time and space and matter and energy and since we know there is nothing else, how did these come into existence out of nothing?

Berlinski points out that physicist Victor Stenger has had a crack at the problem.

Proposing to show how something might emerge from nothing, he introduces "another universe [that existed prior to ours that tunneled through . . . to become our universe.  Critics will argue that we have no way of observing such an earlier universe, and so this is not very scientific" [Ibid., p.97.  Italics, Berlinski].
Away with the smirks and the giggles.  This is serious stuff.  These secularist cosmologists are the apostles and prophets of our age.  Have some respect.  More time please.

Berlinski administers a kind coup de grace:
Critics . . . will certainly observe that Stenger has completely misunderstood the terms of the problem that he has set himself, and that far from showing how something can arise from nothing, he has shown only that something might arise from something else.  That is not an observation that has ever evoked a firestorm of controversy.

A man must really know his own limits, as Clint Eastwood observed. [Ibid.]

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