Arguments for the Existence of God
XXXIV. Materialism Vanishes.
Page 2 begin sub C.
C. The End of Materialism as We know it.
Of course none of these types of dualism spoken of are actually returns to the old Platonic style dualism. They constitute a new notion of a "spiritual" dimension within the physical, or a "immanent dualism." But this concept is not removed from Christian theology, it is very similar to the notions of Paul Tillich's teacher Ernst Trolesche, who spoke of an "immanent transcendence." But the fact remains that it is a far cry form the old mechanistic materialism of the enlightenment. It demonstrates an openinig up of thought, a greater willingness to expand categoreis and a willingness to depart from the old enlightenment assumption that there is nothing but a mechanistic physical world. Some data from these studies also suggests that there are things beyond the physical realm.
1)Data indicating reality beyond material realm OR other aspects to the material which indicate the Spirit.
a. ESP research.
Transpersonal Realities or Neurophysiological Illusions: Toward an Empirically Testable Dualism
Charles T. Tart
[Presented at 1978 Meeting of the American Psychological Association in Toronto, Canada.]
"Transpersonal experiences, in which a person seems to go beyond (trans) the limits of his body and mind, are exceptionally important to their experiencers, and can form the basis of religions and philosophies, yet the current scientific position that totally equates consciousness with brain functioning automatically views the content of these vital experiences as illusions and delusions. Transpersonal psychology is thus reduced to the study of hallucinations. More than 600 experiments, however, provide first-class scientific evidence for the existence of paraconceptual phenomena such as extrasensory perception (ESP), phenomena that cannot be explained in terms of brain processes and which argue that some aspects of consciousness are of a qualitatively different nature than physical processes.
b.Maslow's data on Archetypes.
Religions, Values, and Peak-Experiences, Abraham H. Maslow
Appendix I. "An Example of B-Analysis."
Maslow points out that the same universal symbols emerge in all people across culture. He confirms this connection emerges with with the use of all pyschoanalytical techniques.
"Now that may be taken as a frank admission of a naturalistic psychological origin, except that it invovles a universal symbology which is not explicable through merely naturalistic means. How is it that all humans come to hold these same archetypical symbols? (For more on archetypes see Jesus Chrsit and Mythology page II) The "prematives" viewed and understood a sense of transformation which gave them an integration into the universe. This is crucial for human development. They sensed a power in the numenous, that is the origin of religion."
"In Appendix I and elsewhere in this essay, I have spoken of unitive perception, i.e., fusion of the B-realm with the D-realm, fusion of the eternal with the temporal, the sacred with the profane, etc. Someone has called this "the measureless gap between the poetic perception of reality and prosaic, unreal commonsense." Anyone who cannot perceive the sacred, the eternal, the symbolic, is simply blind to an aspect of reality, as I think I have amply demonstrated elsewhere (54), and in Appendix I."
c.BB cosmology proves realm beyond the "natural."
*BB = no physical cause.
John Barrow, professor of astronomy at the University of Sussex in England, states that the traditional Big Bang picture, with its initial singularity of infinite density "is, strictly speaking, . . . creation out of absolutely nothing."[ John Barrow, The Origin of the Universe (New York: Basic Books, 1994), p. 113.]
In a recent article by Tom Ulsman, he cites Cambridge University Professor
Neil Turok who says:
"The problem we have is that every particle in the universe originated in the singularity . . . That's unacceptable because there are no laws of physics that tell you how they came out of it" ("Give Peas a Chance,"Astronomy Magazine, September 1999, p. 38).
*There can be no physical cause in the standard model;The Singularity is beyond space/time.
Quentin Smith, a philosopher of science at the University of Western Michigan, says in Theism, Atheism and Big Bang Cosmology (1993): "It belongs analytically to the concept of the cosmological singularity that it is not the effect of prior physical events. The definition of a singularity entails that it is impossible to extend the space-time manifold beyond the singularity. This effectively rules out the idea that the singularity is the effect of some prior natural process."
That in itself proves a realm of some sort, beyond the "natural." Now it doesn't prove the classical conception of heaven, of course. That realm ["beyond the BB] could be merely mathematical, or it could be another sort of "physical realm." But the "physicality" of it doesn't matter, we conceive of the "natural realm" as our four coordinate system of space/time. That something can be beyond that is a priori an indication that the "material realm" such as we know it, is not all there is to reality.
d.Downward causality in brin/mind research.
"Take the matter of 'downward causation' to which Harman gives some attention. Why should this be an issue in brain dynamics? As Erich Harth points out in Chapter 44, connections between higher and lower centers of the brain are reciprocal. They go both ways, up and down. The evidence (the scientific evidence) for downward causation was established decades ago by the celebrated Spanish histologist Ramon y Cajal, yet the discussion goes on. Why? The answer seems clear: If brains work like machines, they are easier to understand. The facts be damned!"[Miller quoting Rosenberg, Journal of Consciousness Studies, op. cit.]
e.Consciousness as a basic property of nature.
JCS, 3 (1), 1996, pp.33-35
Department of Physiology,
University of California, San Francisco,
"Solutions to the `hard problem' of consciousness must accept conscious experience as a fundamental non-reducible phenomenon in nature, as Chalmers suggests. Chalmers proposes candidates for an acceptable theory, but I find basic flaws in these. Our own experimental investigations of brain processes causally involved in the development of conscious experience appear to meet Chalmers' requirement. Even more directly, I had previously proposed a hypothetical `conscious mental field' as an emergent property of appropriate neural activities, with the attributes of integrated subjective experience and a causal ability to modulate some neural processes. This theory meets all the requirements imposed by the `hard problem' and, significantly, it is experimentally testable.
Conscious events as orchestrated space–time selections.
DiaLogos issue #15
The Creator's Software:
An Extensive Interpretation of Information
in Natural Science and Philosophy
byPeter Thoma http://megabyte.crosswinds.net/popup.flycast.php
Peter Thoma is a German Physicists who has devoted his retirement to developing his theory of information density.
"Under the lemmatic* assumption that the entirety of nature obeys a conservation law (it does not change and does not vanish) it is proposed to designate this complete set of laws of nature as the "primary information density" or "Ip" . In this way a discrimination between a higher order information controlling nature and the conventional data transfer information carried by energy is achieved."
W.Heisenberg (Gesammelte Werke, Band 3, Piper Verlag, 1985) had first explained the key role of symmetries for all processes in the phase spaces of physics (a closed space of thermodynamical variables) and led his student Weizsaecker to describe symmetry as the basic element of information in nature. (.C.F.v.Weizsaecker: Aufbau der Physik, DTV Verlag 1988)."
"H.Lyre, one of Weizsaecker's students, recently has formulated a quantum theory of information (H. Lyre: Quantentheorie der Information. Zur Naturphilosophie der Theorie der Ur-Alternativen und einer abstrakten Theorie der Information, Springer Verlag, Wien 1998) using Weizsaecker's Ur theory ( "Ur" is translated here as "prime"). He shows that the symmetries of nature are built up by prime alternatives or "yes-no" decisions (primes) and that such a prime is the unit of quantum information or a quantum bit. This is probably the first complete description of quantum information in nature. The primes are nonlocalizable; they do not carry energy, but gauge symmetry per unit volume (1/m3). Using a different approach Collier (J.Collier: Information originates in Symmetry Breaking, Science and Culture 7, 247 (1996)) affirms these results."
"Following these conclusions this work proposes to include the basic laws of nature into a more general conception of information and to introduce in this way the primary information density Ip as one of three constituents of nature. The other two are the total energy H represented by a multitude of elementary particles and Einstein's space-time tR . Ip contains all (known and unknown) laws of nature including evolution and autopoiesis (self-organization) and controls nature by means of its four basic forces and it has a sequential priority, since the process follows the program. The probable "first" control commands in the moment of the Big Bang "create symmetries and evolute" ("fiat lux") which do not exclude the antisymmetric, but rare, command "devolute", tempting the observer to attribute a vectorial property to Ip, but this is speculative. Independently of the expansion speed of the universe it extends throughout its space. Here tR is a differential operator in the set of equations governing the four basic forces with a (preset) array of initial conditions."
"Looking at physics we note that Ip does not need H for its availability and conservation and looking at biology we note that we know only a very small part of the valid laws of nature within our own living environment of very weak gravity. The larger, unknown part of Ip governs nature under strong and extreme gravity. The elementary particles interacting in the first seconds of the universe and the particles in the present universe are identical or, in other words, there is no evolution of elementary particles and therefore no evolution of the interactions between them."
[*Editor's Note: "lemma" generally means any assumption, but especially, in mathematics and logic, one invoked to facilitate the development of a hypothesis -- in this case, a universal set of laws or conditions governing the entire cosmos, including those portions of which are likely to remain beyond the bounds of empirical investigation. ](RWK, editor)
f.Empiricial evidence on Miracles and Healing.<
The Miracles: A Medical Doctor Says 'Yes' H. Richard Casdroph. Logos Books Int. 1976.
Scientific documentation of miracles is hard to get because doctors and technicians are afraid. But it does exist.In fact it is gathered all the time. See the book (above) Before and After X-ray photographs of healing. X-Rays are empirical scientific evidence, doens't have to be a "study." X-ray evidence is direct scientific proof of healing and Casdroph offers such evidence form his own practice. Placebo effect could not repair a borken leg instenantly.
g.Near Death Experince.
See the Argument on NDE.
2.Scientific Theorists more willing to consider alternatives beyond the old style mechinistic materialism OR Determinism.
Rosenberg's 'liberal naturalism' [CS:JCS:3.1.77]:
"The emergence of the Liberal Naturalist is a sign that we are continuing to mature as naturalists. We are now beginning, just beginning, to realize that the natural world we actually live in encompasses the physical, but only as an aspect. Consciousness shows us that our world has another fundamental aspect that we must understand if we are to understand the qualitative character of our mental lives."
[In a footnote, he distinguishes his view from physicalism and, at the same time, attempts to bypass anti-dualism attacks by calling it 'naturalism'!]
What can be seen from these sample quotes is that 'dualism' has been grafted back into the universe. The basic obvious reality of downward causation of a mind-not-physical (in the classical sense) has finally been noticed! The tendency to reductionism is shown to be without warrant in view of the data. In fact, it is beginning to be questioned as simple 'cultural baggage'! Compare this insightful--albeit disturbing--quote about Harmon's contribution to CS:TSC, in CS:TSC:726]
2.Materialist already given up ground.
Let's not forget that in giving up the need for causes, ascribing the whole universe to non-causal "becoming," the materialist has undercut the ground uponwhich he once ejected God from the scientific picture. Moreover, atheists have argued against me time after time, that aside from analogizing quantum prticles and the universe, just the basic fact of quantum theory calls the notion of cause and effect into question. Of course, they try to save their losses by saying "well cause and effect works on the Newtonian level because by the time you gather together all the quntum coincidences and look at things on the Macro level they have a tendency to work this way." But it's just a tendency. And that means that if we have some observations which counter than tendency they cannot exclude them on "scientific" grounds of no naturalistic cause to account for it because naturalistic cause is just a mere "tendency." There can be other tendencies. One of those could be the tendency of the natural to obey God under the proper condidtions of the action of faith on the part of beleiving agents.
D. Opens the door to Alternative which is God.
Not all of these possibilities will pan out, some are clearly arleady accepted, such as the Big Bang cosmology. At the very least they open the door to new possibilities, espeicially because the ground upon which the materialist would stand to claim "I have no need of that hypothesis; there is nothing beyond the material realm" has been given up.
Not all of these possibilities will pan out, some are clearly already accepted, such as the Big Bang cosmology. At the very least they open the door to new possibilities, especially because the ground upon which the materialist would stand to claim "I have no need of that hypothesis; there is nothing beyond the material realm" has been given up.
Of course the theist might give up something too. None of this even hints at any direct proof of the tradition "realm of Grace" or heaven with the pearly gates. But if we are willing to reconfigure our theology a bit one could already write a theological view of reality, complete with religious devotion, salvation and life transformation based largely upon what has been presented here. What emerges from this list of possible departures from the conventional version of the material is a connection to mind; there seems to be a principle of mind organizing, perhaps creating, the universe, and our consciousness seems to be connected to that through the unconscious, and we are capable of tapping into it and transforming our lives, maybe even being physically healed.
Dr. Thoma is certain enough that his theory indicates a mind or a consciousness organizing the universe from the inside out (that is from the fabric of physical law) that he is willing to call it "the creator's software:"
DiaLogos issue #15
The Creator's Software:
An Extensive Interpretation of Information
in Natural Science and Philosophy
by Peter Thoma: http://megabyte.crosswinds.net/popup.flycast.php
"Not excluding evolutive processes in highly organized substances this underlines the priority claim of Ip; it should be regarded as the Creator's "software" -- in today's language -- or as spiritual energy. Since we know only an extremely small part of the existing nature, we spiritually see only a small section of the reality or "truth". As the reality we understand the entirety of the universe including all its known and unknown properties. Life is the most enigmatic part of the reality; it is based on unknown parts of Ip and it is characterized by two essential properties:
a) it is connected with a structurally higher order organization of matter;
b) autopoiesis leads to an adaptive evolutive optimization of living ensembles within their environment."
"This self-organization as an evolutive and directional process is a part of Ip, thus evolution is a prime determined adaption and optimization process. Living organisms exchange information by means of emission and absorption of energy. This energy carried information we designate as secondary information Is.
All important religions including the pre-Christian ones agree with us Christians that God is the source of the spiritual energy. The greater part of scientists and thinkers including religiously indifferent ones speak of a creating spirit, whom they sometimes call the "great programmer", who does not play dice. Especially the biologists like it to speak of "creatures and concreatures".