Can being come from Non-being ?

The Universe had a beginning and the cause is NOT scriptural god. Of all possible explanations, the existence of a priori existence of a motivated intelligence is the absolute least of probable solutions.

If there is any abstract condition which might be causal to creation, it cannot be other than mathematical in essence.

You say this,

There is however a wealth of evidence, which can lead us to informed, well-justified conclusions.
despite the wealth of scientific information, that permits to reach informed conclusions.
But nowhere do you present this information. You use tired old tropes from 2000 years ago of “first cause” and “fine tuning”.

You make a long explanation of how the universe can’t have existed forever, but when I pointed out that you are talking about this particular physical universe that we live in, and something else exists before and/or outside of it, including outside of our concept of time, you responded by asking what is the cause of the quantum vacuum. But now you’ve abandon that, you’ve gone back to the cause/effect universe we live in and ignored the theories we have about how that came to be, even to the point of saying, “Science doesn’t even wastes it’s time trying to study what came before the big bang and creation of the universe”

This is no way to have a conversation.

Adonai888 said,

Therefore, that “something” must have existed eternally, and be and spiritual in nature. This being, we call God.

OR (more scientifically defensible)

Therefore, that “something” must have existed eternally and be metaphysical in nature. This type of being, we call Mathematical Potential.

Potential = That which may become reality

In philosophy, potentiality and actuality[1] are a pair of closely connected principles which Aristotle used to analyze motion, causality, ethics, and physiology in his Physics, Metaphysics, Nicomachean Ethics and De Anima, which is about the human psyche.[2]

The concept of potentiality, in this context, generally refers to any “possibility” that a thing can be said to have. Aristotle did not consider all possibilities the same, and emphasized the importance of those that become real of their own accord when conditions are right and nothing stops them.[3] Actuality, in contrast to potentiality, is the motion, change or activity that represents an exercise or fulfillment of a possibility, when a possibility becomes real in the fullest sense.[4]

As we have persuasive evidence that mathematical self-organization and self-assembly are functional universal properties, can we add the property of mathematical self-actualization, without having to assume a motivated external causality?

If it’s a god there is no reason for anyone to assume it’s the god described in the bible. It could also be a different god or many gods. Saying it’s god is a non-answer. No one has any reason to assume a god exists or if a god is possible what it might be like.

Or that a god has any human qualities. Ascribing human qualities is no more than humans projecting human desires.

IMO, if there is a god (guiding force), it is of a purely mathematical nature and has no emotional stake in anything . It’s not necessary.

Wow, I can’t believe I didn’t check out this conversation before.

The universe had a beginning. That’s what we think, not what we know, but it’s a pretty good guess as far as we know, so let’s assume it’s true. What does that tell us? It tells us that there must be something besides the universe which is apart from the universe. But it doesn’t say anything about what that something might be, just that the something in question is outside of the universe as we know it. It certainly doesn’t tell us enough to start assigning properties to that thing. This is especially true given that we only know, and can only know, the properties of things within our universe. We can know a few properties it does not have, perhaps. But knowing what a thing is not doesn’t tell us anything about what that thing is.

And the universe follows rules. What does that tell us? It tells us that there’s an underlying structure to the universe. And this is the sticking point for people making the argument that this structure is evidence of an intelligence. The reason for that is a fundamental misunderstanding of what, exactly, these rules are. The laws of physics ARE NOT unbreakable rules which the universe is required to follow. The universe is not constrained by the mathematical formulas which describe its workings. The universe came first and the laws of physics second. The universe wasn’t designed to follow these rules, the rules were designed (by us) to describe the universe. And that is a very important distinction. The laws of physics are nothing more than our way of describing how the universe works. The rules to not govern the nature of the universe, the nature of the universe dictated the rules.

Once you understand that concept the argument for the necessity of a god really becomes nothing more than the unfounded claim that there could be no structure to the universe without an intelligence to cause it, for which there is zero evidence and no real argument. That’s just a claim, a belief, not an argument at all. The simple order of things utterly destroys this argument. Since the universe came before the rules it could not have been designed to follow those rules, which did not exist until billions of years later when we came along to create them. And, of course, it takes the simple understanding that they aren’t really “rules” at all, they’re just our explanation of how the universe works. Similarly, that the universe is mathematically predictable isn’t evidence that the universe was designed with mathematics in mind. That the universe works the way it does is the reason that mathematics exists as it does. Mathematics were designed to conform to the universe, not the other way around. Again, the universe came first, so the other way around is impossible.


I remember a name Adonai from the previous incarnation of this forum. He posted things exactly like this and didn’t budged from his simple arguments. I could misremembering, and theres no way to track that down, just saying.

I remember something similar from, I think, the Necronomicon. I think it was in one of the “spells” in the book, but I could be wrong. It could have been one of Crowley’s books or The Golden Dawn by Israel Regardi, but it sure strikes me as a Necronomicon name off the top of my head. One of the angels/demons/gods, I think. Like Marduk, who was definitely Necronomicon…I think.

Me: “Perhaps not everything that “is” is composed of fermions.”
Lausten: “What does this have to do with the question?”

I think the terms “being” and “non-being” are used here to actually mean “exist” and “non-existent”.

A bit from Wikipedia: “… An important characteristic of bosons is that their statistics do not restrict the number of them that occupy the same quantum state. … Unlike bosons, two identical fermions cannot occupy the same quantum space. …”

Unless an object has some interaction with its surroundings, we cannot say it “exists”, because we, as part of its surroundings, will have no experience of it. Bosons, and anything composed of them are, theoretical. We can legitimately posit a “state of being” for them, but not existence, if we accept that they are factual but not within our experience. If we do this it basically means that science has discovered a potential basis for things “unseen”.

Within that framework who knows what relationships and processes might there be between what we see and what we don’t. For example, if all we could experience were solids, we would say solids exist and gasses do not. And if a gas were cooled and compressed to a solid state it would appear that a solid, something existing, came from something that didn’t.

Unless an object has some interaction with its surroundings, we cannot say it “exists”
Sorry Bob. You are redefining words so that things that exist don't exist. You never really had my attention and you continue to lose it. The species homo existed for millions of years without any concept of the size of the universe or where everything came from. But if you could go back and somehow ask them if something they can't interact with can still exist, they would say "of course".

Lausten, surely you are not saying we can say that things we cannot experience do exist. Where will you get any proof of such things? If we do not experience at least some interaction with a thing how can we say we experience it? How can we apply the scientific method to things we don’t experience? You seem to be making the case for religious and UFO-type experience.

I don’t believe I have attempted to redefine the word “exist”, but maybe just clarify how we should use it so that we’re all on the same page. Of course we cannot claim that something doesn’t exist just because we are unable to experience it, even though many deny any basis for religious experience because they have no experience of it.

I have differentiated a state of being from a state of existence as theoretical not experienced.

I’m going to ask you to define YOUR terms Bob. I think I gave the example that I did not experience the Big Bang, but I’m pretty certain it happened. Nor do I experience exoplanets, but I’m pretty sure they exist. So, I’m not making a case for UFO’s, since I have almost no reason to believe aliens in ships appear in our skies at the rate UFO websites say they do. It’s probability vs possibility. If you are going to use a word like “theory”, you need to understand that difference.

This excellent presentation may clear up some questions about “being” and “non-being” and/or “existence” and non-existence".

This question is answered in the quantum fields of the so called “vacuum” which has mo massive properties but is extremely dynamic (chaotic) in essence.

Widdershin, what is the universe? Is it something you read about and have accepted as real?

Here is a human who maybe doesn’t quite have the concept that things that are not present to be sensed, can exist. (This ability is called Object Permanence.)


The origin of existence is an unsolved riddle. No human being has solved this riddle. You have not solved it, nor Aquinas or Craig, or Krauss.

Something from nothing is irrational.

An actual infinite is irrational.

The speculation of god solves nothing and is simply special pleading for an actual irrational, that is, an actual infinite. All the same problems of the irrationality of an actual infinite apply to god just as they apply to any other speculation of the origin of existence.


There are no sound arguments for god, they all contain logical defects. Aquinas, Scotus, Plantinga, Feser, Craig and on and on. Every one of them fail.

Krauss is a particularly galling failure. I have diminished expectations from theists. We live among a demon haunted population, it is our human history that most people invent ghosts and spirits and gods of various sorts. But for an educated atheist scientist like Krauss to peddle an equivocation as though it is a solution to the great unsolved riddle is particularly disgusting.


There are no sound arguments for god. Your attempt contains multiple failures, as all attempts to argue logically for god all fail.

The universe had a beginning,
You mean the big bang? How limited your view of the universe is. There is nothing that requires our big bang to be the beginning of material existence.
and must, therefore, have been caused into being and created by something If there ever was a time when nothing at all existed, then there would be absolutely nothing today. It is an axiomatic truth that if nothing ever existed, then “nothing” would still be the ontological situation, for nothing simply remains nothing — forever! Nothing plus nothing equals nothing. Since it is the case that something does now exist, one must logically conclude that something has existed always.
An actual infinite is irrational. Infinity is a concept, not a number, or an amount of stuff, or an amount of time. One can never count up to a real infinity, nor can one regress an infinity of real time, nor can one ever make an infinity of real divisions. No matter how much counting one does, or how much progressing through time one does at any particular time one is still at a finite count or a finite time, as will be the case the next count and the next, therefore, no matter how many counts or how much time one progresses it will always be the case that one remains in a finite state never achieving a real infinity of any sort.
That “something” must be either physical or non-physical.
"Non-physical existence" is an incoherent term. That is what theists do, invent incoherent terms by jamming disjoint words into a single phrase and then declaring they have a solution, when in fact you have merely uttered gibberish. "Non-physical existence" is simply meaningless babble.
Since the physical universe came into existence at a finite time ago, the cause must be non-physical. Another term for the “non-physical” would be “spirit.”
Incoherent, meaningless, gibberish, babble.
Therefore, that “something” must have existed eternally,
Special pleading that your special sort of something is allowed to be irrational, that is, an actual infinite.
and be and spiritual in nature. This being, we call God.
We who? I am not a part of that we, so like Aquinas you close with a demonstrably false statement.


Either there is a God, or not.
That is monotheistic personified god limited thinking, shared by Barnes, so let's use his trillion.

If one can speculate 1 god then 2 gods or 1,000,000,000,000 gods are equally likely. As long as we are making wild unevidenced speculations (god) I can just as well speculate that 999,999,999,999 gods acting in cooperation lack the power to create material existence but 1,000,000,000,000 gods acting in cooperation have sufficient power to create material existence.

I can speculate any number of such coopering gods from 1 to any particular number.

I can further speculate that god(s) do not exist anymore because they committed suicide in the act of creation, making material out of themselves to their own demise.

Or I can speculate that the sort of material that created our material can be past eternal but transformed itself into our sort of material at some finite time in the past such that it no longer exists.

The only evidence we have is that apparently material cannot be created or destroyed, and material exists, and therefore the conclusion is obvious, material has always existed, our inability to rationally account for that past eternal existence being due to our limited rational faculties.

That requires to select 1 out of 40^224.000!
Post hoc statistical citations are a particularly bad theistic argument. Every particular material arrangement is vastly improbable. A single particular shape of a snowflake is highly improbable, so consider the odds against all the particular shapes of all the snowflakes being what they are. Yet those shapes are all what they are.

Your error is in looking at the arrangement of a system that developed over time and considering the probability of all those particular arrangements as if they all appeared suddenly and randomly.

When it comes to the truth of any given proposition, one only has three logical options: affirm it, deny it, withhold judgment (due to ignorance or the inability to weigh competing evidences).
More limited theistic thinking. The human brain is multifaceted and a person can and typically does hold multiple perspectives simultaneously within the space of the brain.

Humans assign personal probability estimates. A person can become personally convinced there is no god and also assert that position is not absolutely provable because it would require the proof of a universal negative. This is not a logically strong affirmation, a logically strong denial, or withholding judgement.

I am convinced there is no god due to a preponderance of negative evidences, a lack of positive evidences, the universal failure of all logical arguments for god put forth by even the most brilliant of theists, and the availability of observable alternative naturalistic explanations for nearly all phenomena asserted to be the work of god.

My atheism is strong in the human sense of being thoroughly personally convinced, just as I am thoroughly personally convinced Russel’s Teapot is not in orbit even though I cannot reasonably claim to be able to absolutely prove a universal negative.



Lausten: “I’m going to ask you to define YOUR terms Bob. I think I gave the example that I did not experience the Big Bang, but I’m pretty certain it happened. Nor do I experience exoplanets, but I’m pretty sure they exist. So, I’m not making a case for UFO’s, since I have almost no reason to believe aliens in ships appear in our skies at the rate UFO websites say they do.”

If we believe the BB happened and that exoplanets exist it is because we believe the stories told by the people who have said they had the experiences of doing the science. If we accept that the pictures and calcs are not fake it is because we have faith in the people who have presented them to us. If we believe it is because we have extrapolated our own personal experiences into the context of what we have been told and it seems possible, reasonable, logical and probable. For that reason, and because we want order, we want to believe.

And of course the opposite is true for stories which we don’t believe, like stories of UFOs and religious experiences. If we don’t believe, it is because we don’t have faith in the teller, we we don’t have experiences to extrapolate and just maybe because we don’t want to believe.

Lausten: “It’s probability vs possibility. If you are going to use a word like “theory”, you need to understand that difference.”

I think none of us know what is ultimately possible and without knowing that we are not able to calculate probability beyond one standard deviation. Theory usually has some basis; if it doesn’t then we conclude it is fantasy. I think the extent to which we will accept a theory is dependent upon the extent to which we accept stories of the experiences, conclusions and extrapolations leading the theorist to imagine something not experienced.

I do not accept Wikipedia as any final authorative source, but it is convenient and seems mostly reasonable.

Wikipedia: “Object permanence is the understanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be perceived (seen, heard, touched, smelled or sensed in any way).” (Underlining is mine)

The premise of this definition is that objects are understood to exist when they can be perceived (seen, heard, touched, smelled or sensed in any way). I suggest that our current understanding of the universe and our senses is that this perception is not possible unless there is some sort of interaction with the objects, something that causes us to react to the presence of the objects and them to react to us.

I suggest in the Wiki definition the term “continue” includes the extrapolation of a memory of an experience of the object without an experience of the object to ceasing to exist. I also suggest the term “cannot” means “can no longer”, reinforcing the idea of an experience which occurred but has ceased.

Finally, I suggest the term “understanding” in the context of the Wiki definition means acceptance, belief or faith. I reject any notion that object permanence includes any idea that objects are understood to exist without first being experienced. Thus I suggest that we can say we understand, accept, believe or have faith that objects exist only when we have first experienced them or believe others’ stories of them.

Wikipedia: “Existence is the ability of an entity to interact with physical or mental reality. In philosophy, it refers to the ontological property of being.”

Wikipedia: “Ontology is the philosophical study of being. More broadly, it studies concepts that directly relate to being, in particular becoming, existence, reality, as well as the basic categories of being and their relations. Traditionally listed as a part of the major branch of philosophy known as metaphysics, ontology often deals with questions concerning what entities exist or may be said to exist and how such entities may be grouped, related within a hierarchy, and subdivided according to similarities and differences.”

I prefer to distinguish between things which have a state of being (which I think of as the super set of all things) and things which have a state of existence (a subset of that super set). I accept that a state of being has no requirements for objects other than a posited (theoretical) identification whereas a state of existence requires evidence of interaction with the object’s surroundings.

I suggest we may contemplate things with a state of being, even extrapolate from them from our experience with things that are said to have a state of existence, but cannot prove or disprove them. If one accepts the possibility of bosons which now can only be said to have a state of being and not a state of existence then we should not dismiss the possibility of things composed of bosons (or other similar particles). I think that with the boson science may have given us a way to rationalize the unseen and the not-experienced.

I can’t even read all that Bob. These are too basic of concepts. If we can’t agree on them, we don’t have any way to agree on anything.