A thought experiment about what it means "to be" GOD

by Terry 143 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • Terry

    High-sounding philosophy aside, it all comes down to which is more likely, that a mind (God) existed before our universe, or something inanimate (a previous collapsing universe, random atoms just sitting around until they exploded, etc.).

    More likely... to who?

    Based on what knowledge base?

    Arthur Conan Doyle put these words in the mouth of his character Sherlock Holmes:

    "You will not apply my precept," he said, shaking his head. "How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth? "

    Before there was such a thing as a microscope how likely would any reasonably intelligent non-scientific person be to accept the idea that diseases were caused

    by infinitesimal creatures invisible to the nake eye that proliferate over everything we touch?

    One of the most advanced thinkers of ancient times was Aristotle who seemed to get almost every general principle correctly understood. Yet, Aristotle did not think the purpose of the human brain was much more than as an air-conditioner for the blood.

    Context is everything in considering how "likely" something is.

  • Terry

    Either way, the root cause of our existence is fundamentally incomprehensible.

    Stop and think about what you've just stated with firm authority. Is it a statement of knowledge or a declaration of ignorance?

    Arbitrarily demarcating what we can know from what we cannot actually begins or ends with the willingness to ask and explore.

    We've all seen those ancient maps of the known world. The map goes just...so...far...and then: "Here there be dragons"!

  • Terry

    The dictionary and traditional definition of nothing is not the same as this new explanation of 'Nothing'.

    I'll ease the burden and make it simple.

    NOTHING is badly served by calling it "something which...." blah blah blah.

    The absence of something is nothing.

    It is empty space which may be filled or not.

    In math a zero holds place like an empty chair. Will Elijah ring your doorbell and sit there?

    Things which DO exist are commensurable. Many of the arguments presented on this topic contain--instead of logic and reason---the absence of logic and reason.

    Why? Because there is nothing where something should be.

    Here is a little tip (and I'm not being a wise guy or a know-it-all by saying this) illegitimate arguments begin when a debator resorts to telling you something

    cannot be known at the same time they somehow KNOW it can't be known.

    How do we really nail a true thing?

    We use a hammer to drive in a nail.

    The illegitimate arguer seeks to remove your hammer

    and convince you there is no nail.

  • Terry

    Since God created time, there was no "before" the beginning. Time is merely an invention of God.

    Well, Perry, I have to disagree with you.

    Time is not an invention because time is only a method. Time is how we measure the distance between events.

    So, until there were actual events for God (or anybody else) to measure---God could not invent time.

  • Terry

    Perry insists: The Father, Son and Holy Ghost are eternal and are complete in themselves.


    Which one is complete?

    The TRINITY violates IDENTITY. (None of those ones are distinguishable from others unless you line them up and count from right or left)

    Look at those 1's again. None of them has identity beyond the inherent representation of "no more than and no less than".

    Big 1? No. Little 1? No. Father 1? No. Son 1? No. Holy Ghost 1? No.

    To be complete an actual identity needs no further description than what distinguishes it from all others of its kind.

    God the Father is the 1st one.

    The only begotten son is the 2nd one

    and so on........

    The notion that these three are 1 nullifies the logic in any of them being 1.

  • Terry

    Just because you do not understand the nature of a transcendent God, that doesn't give you license to make nonsensical statements like the ones above that you cannot possible have any inkling about

    Which one of us is making statements that they cannot possibly have any inkling about? I'm not asserting a logical impossibility as a certainty, am I?

    The Trinity does, however. And you espouse it.

    I'm using plain english and not using any fancy made-up theological ideas which were argued, debated and disputed by pious, sincere, true believers from day one.

    Incidentally, you speak about the "nature" of God. As a human you exist in an actual universe where things can be measured. But, you're claiming knowledge of an UNnatural nature which cannot be measured.

    I'd call this an inkling and not much more than that.

  • Terry

    How about we start all over?

    The purpose of my thought experiment was supposed to be based on the fact that YOU (the reader) knew what simple, everyday words actually mean.

    Ahh, I was wrong!

    Some of you naughty nabobs use words any old way you want and discard context as though it were unnecessary.

    I'm not going to let you off the hook that easly. I'm going to try again.

    We'll scale down our experiment to human dimensions.

    When we were little kids our parents probably asked us: "'What do you want to be when you grow up?"


    That is a sentence with a context. Stay with that specific context.

    Is the parent asking the child about an actual future, a potential future, an imaginary future? What would you say about the question itself?

    I would say the parent isn't asking anything about the future at all. I'd say the parent is questioning how the child sees their SELF-- IN TERMS OF realizing some potential which may be present in them as a desire.

    Get it?

    Since YOU are the child...let's pretend you answer: "I want to be a Chef and run my own restaurant!"

    Doesn't this mean that YOU are thinking prospectively? While not yet a Chef and while not yet owning a restaurant you can IMAGINE the mere possibility for yourself.

    You--while not yet a chef--can actively engage in planning how you might SOME DAY realize the goal of BEING a chef.

    Okay? Got that?

    Now lets extrapolate.

    Remember, this is just an experiment in thinking.

    We are going to posit a character in a fictional universe. We'll call this character: NOBODY. (Because this character is undefined as yet.)

    We only know one thing about this fictional universe and one thing about this character.

    The universe contains nothing. The character is unknowable because we haven't described the character.

    Just for the fun of it--since we are the creator of this character in our imagination--let's make the character aware that existence exists.

    Now let's write some dialogue. An internal dialogue, of course.

    "I exist. But, how do I know I exist? I'm thinking. I think, therefore I AM!"

    Now, let's call that character by a name. We'll call the character I AM.

    Why do we distinguish the character by a name? So that we can begin to invest our character with an IDENTITY.

    As the fictional parent of our character we can direct a question to I AM.....

    "What do you want to be?"

    Now, since the character only has self-awareness in a universe that contains nothing....what answer can I AM give us?

    Is there a range of possible answers?

    Listen as I AM attempts to answer us....

    "What are my choices? What does it mean to want TO BE?"

    Okay, beginning to see how blank the slate is? The situation is entirely empty but full of possibility.

    That is where I start my Opening Topic.

    Now do you get it?

  • jgnat

    I can't get my head wrapped around this. Too many words. This is what is in my head.


  • Terry

    I think that pretty well sums it up, JGnat!

    BEFORE comes before AFTER.

    AFTER comes after BEFORE.

    To Be is not the same as IS.

    There is a BEFORE involved in becoming an IS.

    Not existing comes before CREATED.

    Creator comes after has CREATED.

    Like the diploma comes after the graduation.

    All rather elementary my dear Watson.

  • Perry

    The trinity doesn't violate idenity, it explains it..... much the same way the red barn and the green barn and the blue barn are just different aspects of the one barn on top.

    Likewise we are spirit, soul and flesh ...in the image of God. How many times has your spirit intended to do one thing but the prospect of fleshly gratification prompted you to do another?

    You are a prisoner to your naturalism paradigm. Think about it. Your flesh doesn't have two you's when you are "fighting with yourself" Our flesh, soul and spirit are in conflict with each other MANY times.... yet they are all YOU.

    We are made in God's image.

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