A limit to God's power?

  • #26
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I have this magical "blackboard" where the equations I write becomes true. There are several layers of equations, i.e. some are more important than others, but it is a piece of cake to add a new equation ... or delete an existing equation. There are equations for many things, also for the relation between energy and space-time. I'll delete it now and then we will ...........
 
  • #27
JD
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cronxeh said:
this whole debate is so stupid and every question has a self-stupifying answer like 'only if he wanted to see what its liek to be powerless'

god doesnt exist. neither does hell/heaven/demons or any of that crap you were fed as a child. get a grip and see whats wrong with this world - religion.
I think that tolerance could be greater regardless of how you view the Universe. Obviously my tolerance would be tested if you were to burn my house down :surprise: . However, if you did it for my benefit then I might be very grateful.
 
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  • #28
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You know what? It turns out that "omnipotence" has no meaning whatsoever. It's not just that it's problematic, or impossible in principle. It actually has no noticeable distinction between itself and "normal" beings that live forever.

A being that exists forever has an infinite number of things that it could do, and an infinite number of things that it will never do (not really that it can't do, but that it won't do). An omnipotent being is a being that has no limitations, except the limitation of having no limitations (it is not capable of being limited, and is thus limited). Thus there are an infinite number of things that it can't do, and an infinite number of things that it can. This means that the only way to tell the difference between an omnipotent being and a normal being is that which would be noticed at the end of infinity (by then, normal beings will have done everything an infinite number of times, but the omnipotent being would still have an infinite number of things it has never done, because it can't), and there is no end to infinity, so an omnipotent being is not distinguishable from a normal being that lives forever.

Oh, btw, if there's an issue with the fact that the normal being has to live forever to be equated with the omnipotent one, just think of the fact that the omnipotent being should be able to self-destruct or be destroyed by something else (since it can do or allow whatever it wants) and so it may also be bound by the finiteness of its life.
 
  • #29
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JD is correct, in the sense that you can not visualize God. You can not comprehend God. One way we deal with this is that we think its a person, or mabey a soul like us, and call it He or She some times. And since also when we put stereo types on God, it seems less and less likely God could exist, since it sounds so obsured, but only because the way we try and percieve him.

Mentat I think what your trying trying to say is they may, do an infinite number of things, but only if he/she CAN. Now if God is omnipotent, then he can, and may, do an infinite number of things, besides just doing many things to a restriction, based on how long you live.

<3 All
 
  • #30
loseyourname
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Is there any particular reason why religious apologists need an omnipotent God? Can't it be enough that he is able to violate or even rewrite the laws of nature?

JD said:
I think that tolerance could be greater regardless of how you view the Universe. Obviously my tolerance would be tested if you were to burn my house down :surprise: . However, if you did it for my benefit then I might be very grateful.
Burn your house down for your own good? Did you just watch Fight Club?
 
  • #31
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God has never made anything, but everything is made out of God. Do you understand?
 
  • #32
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TENYEARS said:
God has never made anything, but everything is made out of God. Do you understand?
inaccurate

So when in the bible it sais "God created the heavens and the earth..."

Should it have read "God is the heavens and the earth?"
 
  • #33
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Should it have read "God is the heavens and the earth?"
Now this is a good point.....the bible is full of typo's :wink:
 
  • #34
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Scott Sieger said:
Now this is a good point.....the bible is full of typo's :wink:
indeed it is
 
  • #35
Let's look at this logically. We have postulated one thing; that God can do anything. Thus he can lift all rocks. It follows that the uber-heavy rock in question is not in the set of all rocks. So for God to create this rock would require the breaking of the laws of logic.

Now we've got two choices. Do we allow the definition of omnipotence to include violating the laws of logic or not? If not, God's in the clear.

Otherwise things get interesting. Once we've allowed omnipotence to do the impossible once, it can happen again. So God could certainly lift a rock that he is not lifting.
 
  • #36
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Otherwise things get interesting. Once we've allowed omnipotence to do the impossible once, it can happen again. So God could certainly lift a rock that he is not lifting.
Now if we allow God a small amount of cleverness he would simply get people like you and your mates to lift the rock for him any way...... :rofl:
Thus lifting a rock without lifting it.....ha
 
  • #37
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Nexus[Free-DC] said:
Let's look at this logically. We have postulated one thing; that God can do anything. Thus he can lift all rocks. It follows that the uber-heavy rock in question is not in the set of all rocks. So for God to create this rock would require the breaking of the laws of logic.
Let's look at this logically. We have postulated one thing; that God can do anything. Thus he can create rocks with any degree of difficulty in lifting. It follows that the uber-heavy rock in question is in the set of all objects that god can create. So for God to create this rock would not require the breaking of the laws of logic.

1. What does your argument have to do with logic, other than your claim that it is logic?

2. What do the "laws of logic" have to do with anything outside the bounds of logic?

As your example shows, even if we pretend that you have presented a logical argument, it has no relevance to the question at hand, other than a theoretical relationship.

By the way, you speak of the rock in question as not being in the set of all rocks. How about applying your "logic" to the set of all things that god can create, which is the topic of the original question.
 
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  • #38
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If you ask yourself the question:

"Am I bound by the laws of logic in what I do?"

The answer would I expect normally be No.

Thus why would we project a limitation of "action with logic" to God?
 
  • #39
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Can god just lower the gravity to like zero?
 
  • #40
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more like increase gravity to zero...Increasing the vacuum to nothing
 
  • #41
this is in reply to omen's statement.

You said that how could finite pieces add up to infinite. well, .333333 repeating is infinite right? you can take out .000003 and it be finite. you can also take out .3 and it is also finite. there just isn't a stopping to the finite infinities.
 
  • #42
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so there is am infinite number of finities....( chuckles)
 
  • #43
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There will be two things you will witness with my words, your realization of their truth now or your realization of their truth later. You have only two choices.
 
  • #44
selfAdjoint
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I'll settle for later. Let me know when it happens.
 
  • #45
JD
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TENYEARS said:
There will be two things you will witness with my words, your realization of their truth now or your realization of their truth later. You have only two choices.
Tenyears, can you expand on the implications of this realization now or in the future?
 
  • #46
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When I speak in terms of realization I speak of direct knowing which has occured. This knowing is out there for all to see, to witness. It is the destiny of all humanity. It will happen. I have seen the day of a proving. It will occur in our life times. To what degree, I do not know. I was disappointed though in the vision, for I knew that it did not matter that science/people or whatever proved anything, for it is only the realization of humanity which will make any difference in the future of our actions which will affect the planet upon which we live.

When I speak things which I say are, they come out of my realization of what is. Sometimes outside forces can make changes in our relative lives. There was a day when I watched a certain thing on television, after 1 year of trying and suddenly realized that night that it was indeed real. The experiences then followed.
 
  • #47
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TENYEARS said:
When I speak in terms of realization I speak of direct knowing which has occured. This knowing is out there for all to see, to witness. It is the destiny of all humanity. It will happen. I have seen the day of a proving. It will occur in our life times. To what degree, I do not know. I was disappointed though in the vision, for I knew that it did not matter that science/people or whatever proved anything, for it is only the realization of humanity which will make any difference in the future of our actions which will affect the planet upon which we live.

When I speak things which I say are, they come out of my realization of what is. Sometimes outside forces can make changes in our relative lives. There was a day when I watched a certain thing on television, after 1 year of trying and suddenly realized that night that it was indeed real. The experiences then followed.
perhaps if you could be more specific and sound less like a madman, somebody could understand what you were talking about...
 
  • #48
vanesch
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omin said:
God cannot be proven to exist. God cannot be proven to not exist. Therefore, God doesn't exist.

I can use the same premises to conclude the converse.
I think the main problem with attempting to prove or not, that a god exists, is with the lack of precise definition of what exactly is meant with that word. For example, the litteral interpretation of the god that occurs in the hebrew bible certainly does not exist, for the simple reason that a lot of scientifically wrong statements are made, from the age of the earth to virgins conceiving children.
The problem is that - except for a few mentally disturbed who, against all proof, maintain that this nevertheless true - most people who declare believing in that god tell you that of course the bible is a piece of ancient litterature written by man, but _inspired_ by a god. So the fact that they wrote down things which, over time, have proved wrong, is just due to that human hand in the business. But in that case, what exactly IS god becomes a moving target! It is very difficult to prove the existance or the non existance of something that remains largely undefined and of which the definition can even change in the course of the discussion.
There is indeed a kind of contradiction into a) praying to god that something will or will not happen, which presupposes that this god has communication skills and has the ability to momentarily intervene in the laws of nature and b) maintain that it is an abstract concept such as "love" or "conciousness".
a) is used as a utilitarian part of religion while b) is used to avoid a proof of it non-existance. But a) and b) are not compatible.
a) could be easily checked in the lab: lets have many people pray that the outcome of throwing some dice will always give 7. Do this 10000 times and make up the statistics. Ok, I know this is an exaggerated and ridiculous example, but the advantage of exaggeration is that it illustrates the point.
(although similar experiments HAVE been conducted in the medical sphere!)

I took as an example the bible, but any great religion works along the same lines. So I nevertheless think that it is more or less established that god doesn't exist, not because we have proof of its non existance, but because the definition is lacking. It is only in the (almost ridiculous) cases when a precise definition is given (usually the people doing this are called fundamentalists) that non-existance proofs are possible.

cheers,
Patrick.
 
  • #49
marcus
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The world was created by the great Blaghor to Whom we sacrifice turkeys.

We pray to Blaghor daily that he should give us love and consciousness and that he should constantly maintain the Laws of Physics.
Since we find that the Laws of Physics continue to apply by the gracious will of Blaghor, we sacrifice, every year at the Feast of Blaghor called the Thanksgiving, millions of turkeys as a sign of gratitude.

Then we consume together the Bird of Blaghor, as a way to become one with the Godhead.

Our name for the Bible is "The Lies of Blaghor" because He in His merriment made up the various lies in these books and persuaded scribes to write them down. Blaghor is pleased with some of the stories in the Bible, which he considers uncommonly entertaining.

May Blaghor bless you and guide you and help you lose 5 pounds,

marcus
 
  • #50
JD
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TENYEARS said:
When I speak in terms of realization I speak of direct knowing which has occured. This knowing is out there for all to see, to witness. It is the destiny of all humanity. It will happen. I have seen the day of a proving. It will occur in our life times. To what degree, I do not know. I was disappointed though in the vision, for I knew that it did not matter that science/people or whatever proved anything, for it is only the realization of humanity which will make any difference in the future of our actions which will affect the planet upon which we live.

When I speak things which I say are, they come out of my realization of what is. Sometimes outside forces can make changes in our relative lives. There was a day when I watched a certain thing on television, after 1 year of trying and suddenly realized that night that it was indeed real. The experiences then followed.
I follow you in the first paragraph but can you expand on the experiences?
 

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