Did God Have a Choice?

A somewhat amusing philosophical problem has popped into my brain, and I wish to explore it in this post. Amusing to me at least, whether it has occurred to others, I’m not sure because I haven’t finished reading the internet (one day, I might), but I’ll jump right into it. The physics of today points (not proves!) to a multi-verse. That is, if ever it is experimentally verified, our universe will not be the only universe that exists, but rather just one amongst an infinite number of universes. In essence, the copernican principle at its grandest scale. This theory, which goes by a few names; string theory and M-theory to name a few, is accounted for in some of our mathematical descriptions of the universe, and we maybe on the verge of paradigm-busting physical evidence to prove it. Now when I say accounted for, what I mean is that it is a logical extrapolation of theories that accurately describe the universe we are in. (The BBC’s “What Happened Before the Big Bang” is an easily digestible primer on this, or this TED talk by physicist Brian C. Greene). Again though, the multiverse is a logical extrapolation of these theories, so when you hear people saying scientists invented the multiverse theory to do away with God, they are mistaken. The multiverse is a prediction of a theory that set out to answer questions about our own universe.

The crux of the theory goes much like this. Our universe was born in a void from quantum fluctuations that unyieldingly create something out of nothing (redefined as a quantum field; actual nothing probably never having existed, instead being a fantasy created by our meaning-seeking, backwards-looking minds), and these somethings sometimes end up being universes, if their emergent properties happen to mesh and congeal, subsequently augmenting each other in a chaotic tug-of-war that once stabilized, grows into a universe, with time created inside the newly formed universe. Our universe, being one of these newly created-creations, also happened to be a bit luckier than normal, in that those contrasting, warring physical constants, happened to be amiable to life, intelligent life no less, which explains why we find ourselves in a universe like ours. This process of emergent properties arising from the combination of individual disparate constants; some conducive to life, others not, in a sea of an infinite amount of universes, still results in an infinite amount of universes that support life (infinities can be smaller and bigger than other infinities; yes very confusing, this will help), and thus other beings just like us, exist in these other life-supporting universes, down to the mannerisms we exhibit, personal and world events, though only slightly different.

To sum it all up, everything that could have ever happened, has happened, in one of these other universes. Another way to look at it, every life choice you have ever made, in some other universe, went the other way, and this goes for everyone (as well as everything) in our universe, and every other universe. Everything that could have existed, has existed; every variable that could have been slightly different, alongside every other variable has existed somewhere (though the variables are finite so they repeat an (almost) infinite amount of times). It’s hard to wrap our minds around, yet such is the power of infinity and the weirdness of the universe. An infinite amount of universes, an infinite amount of you, and an infinite number of possibilities. If I have described it inadequately, then it’s because I’m an idiot, and here’s a link where it is beautifully explained in less than 200 words. The multiverse is a natural (yet unproven) extension of some of the latest theories in cosmology.

Now, where does God come into all this? According to billions of people on this insignificant speck of dust orbiting another insignificant speck of dust, orbiting yet another insignificant speck of dust, and still orbiting…well you get the point, God created the Universe. And among those theists educated enough to understand the latest research in astrophysics and cosmology, many take the view that God instigated the Big Bang, and for those further up the science-to-justify-god ladder, claim that God created the Multiverse (there is a pattern here, God’s role in the cosmos is constantly being redefined, which may logically end in him being nowhere, but I digress). But here’s the kicker; if God created the Multiverse, then does not Einstein’s famous quip ring true? Did he have a choice in creating any individual world (or universe)? Or in influencing any worshipper that prayed to him? Not only may he not be a personal god, but does he keep his omnipotence after creating the multiverse?

Did God have a choice in creating the Universe?” – Albert Einstein

If God exists, and as long as the multiverse theory not being disproved in the future, then the answer is no! He had no choice. A big statement, but lets explore further. From the perspective of this a God, He seemingly has only two options. The first of which, to not create the multiverse. The second of which, to create the multiverse; in which naturally, every possible universal state-of-being and arrangement eventually exists, with no options in-between: all or nothing…

As Neo so soddenly put it in The Matrix Reloaded, the problem is choice. He can choose the left door, or the right door. The choice is between Zero and Infinity, with no leeway in between. To follow it through to its logical conclusion, God is neither omnipotent, nor all-loving, and in actuality, is impotent after he creates the multiverse. (In an interesting side note, how many mythological gods gave up their immortality to be with those they loved? An interesting link perhaps.) Again, this is only a philosophical (or thought) problem as yet, and does not become a physical problem until and when the multiverse theory is proven to be true beyond any shadow of a doubt. But what then? Should that day come, and it will come, one way or the other. God will have to be redefined yet again…

There are only three conclusions one (or at least, I) can take from this:

1: God was lonely and omnipotent in the vastness of nothing, so he created the multiverse, in the process becoming impotent, having no longer the power to interfere anywhere and everywhere, but no longer lonely
2: God wasn’t lonely, but really loves to play whack-a-mole; constantly course-correcting every universe with god-fearers in it, creating yet more moles to whack in another universe as his interventions take every possible route to fruition (photon’s (light particles) actually do this by this way)
3: God does not exist. The multi-verse simply is, with no beginning, neither an end, just being

I take option 3. This reminds me of that old epicurean maxim on God and evil.

“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” – Epicurus

Epicurus over 2,000 years ago, framed it perfectly. It’s a wonder we can’t today with the things we have discovered.

In light of the above options, what do you think?

Fourat Janabi is the author of Random Rationality: A Rational Guide to an Irrational World, available for  $7.99 on Paperback.

146 thoughts on “Did God Have a Choice?”

  1. Good analysis! Answer lies in the Mamuni Mayan’s quote ““As in Micro, so in Macro. The whole exists within the minutest particle and the minutest particle contains the whole. The atom contains the universe and the universe contains the atom, and neither exists without the other. Creator exists within creation, even as creation exists within creator.” 🙂

    1. horrible analysis Ganesh, all you said was “the chicken or the egg thing” and which came first. you cant have a chicken without an egg and you cant have an egg without a chcken… your asking the wrong question , the correct question is how did either one of them come into existance , God created the chicken

        1. The egg came first. This is so obvious. Evolution goes down a path with a series of mutations. At some point in the chicken lineage, you can say ok, that offspring is a chicken. Wherever the dividing line is, it is between a parent and a child. The parent was a bird who produced eggs, but it was not a chicken. The egg, however, developed into a bird with enough chicken-ness to be a chicken.

          My argument makes perfect sense…unless you reject the notion that reality is compelled to conform to our emotional need for sharp dividing lines instead of gradations of grey.

        2. “To infinity and beyond!”, Mr. Lightyear would proclaim. If you want to take a creationists viewpoint, then the chicken obivously came first. There is no macroevolution. However if you take the evolutionist standpoint, a proto-chicken had to come first, mate with another similar animal (birds are very closely related to lizards, note the scales/eggs) that together produced an egg that would hatch a (present day variety) chicken. I thought this was not a creationist website, but I may be mistaken. I further applaud your unique ponderings, however a 5 second cursory google search resulted in http://www.nytimes.com/1999/04/18/magazine/best-question-did-god-have-a-choice.html April 18, 1999 by the NY Times writter Dennis Overbye had a similar question, as apparently many since also. This writter had a different conclusion than your athiest conclusion: “But like card players with an incomplete knowledge of how the cards lie, physicists are forced to play their cards as if there were a way to win the game of science. Without faith that there is order, as Einstein pointed out, the enterprise is doomed anyway. But with that faith, as Einstein proved, it is possible to change the world.” It is an interesting question though. If God exists and has the 4 omnis (power, presence, knowledge, time) and did anything, anything at all, it could easily be infinitly far reaching. In creating many universes, it would be an echo of sorts. Thanks.

        1. Being omnipotent has nothing to do with whether God chooses to be here or not. So absence doesn’t prove anything. By the way, it’s just an assumption that God is omnipotent, not a fact. Nothing is provable either way.

    1. Or, evil is the presence of God (or at least the belief in God). In the old Testament if you change the word God to Satan it begins to make sense.

      1. As you said, switching out the word God for Satan (or some similar type of negative entity) is truly the key to understanding the Old Testament. You’re the first person that I know to have also come to that conclusion. It’s the rationale behind Jesus telling his disciples that they’re praying to a false god (Gospel of Judas). I’d be interested in any other thoughts on the matter that you might wish to share.

        1. “God tested Abraham, said to him, ‘Abraham!’ ‘Take your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering upon one of the mountains of which I shall tell you’.” (Genesis 22:1-2, R.S.V.).
          Eid al-Adha, the Festival of the Sacrifice, is celebrated by Muslims to commemorate the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his son Ishmael as proof of obedience to God.

          If Abraham had refused to murder his son there would have been no Crusades, no Holocaust.

          1. God after testing Abraham promised that he’d provide his own sacrificial offering. The point of this story is to foreshadow the paschal mystery. God sent his own son to be immolated for the forgiveness of sin. Hence, Jesus is called the Lamb of God.

            Another point is that immolation was a common practice in the region. One could claim it was religious practice, but it makes more sense as a more extreme form of an abortion mentality. God demonstrated to Abraham that the practice should be discontinued! Not advocated.

            If you’re going to read scripture, please find someone with the knowledge and authority to provide a reliable interpretation. Otherwise, you may find yourself with the same understanding of scripture as a fundamentalist.

      2. hehe you’re not far off the mark I gather! From what I’ve read, Yahweh is an evolution of the Israeli God of the Armies (or just God of War)… Super-interesting

    2. If God is willing to be present, but unable, then he is not omnipotent. If He is able to be present, but chooses to be absent, then he is not benevolent. if He is both willing and able to be present, then why is he absent and why evil? If He is neither willing nor able to be present, and evil is His absence, then why call Him God?

      1. Benevolent and omnipotent are just terms that people use to try to define the undefinable, to make God human so that we can understand him. So tell me, why do you attempt to discuss the infinite with a finite mind? Do you actually think that you’re going to resolve this question?

        1. Acually, there is no contradiction in a finite mind considering infinity. The concept of infinity is an extremely useful tool in mathematics. It has been studied extensively and rather interesting things have been discovered which I won’t go into in this space. Finally, the fact that infinity (like perfection) can exist (an be used as a tool!) in our minds says nothing about its existence in reality.

    3. To chicagoja: If “evil is the absence of God”, then, since evil certainly exists it follows that “God is absent”. In other words, He does not exist.

      1. I can certainly see why you would feel that way. It’s a natural human desire, even need, to want God to favor them and to always be right there in their lives. As Voltaire said, “If God didn’t exist, we’d have to invent him”. However, the universe wasn’t created with that in mind. Instead, we are here as co-creators and if you understood the power that you have, you might feel emotionally less dependent on the need for God to be here. By the way, even if God is absent, it doesn’t mean that he doesn’t exist.

        1. I certainly agree that the absence of God does not imply he does not exist but, if he is absent, and therefore unable (and perhaps unwilling) to affect our lives, why consider him at all. Also, I feel absolutely no need to consider him to be here (nor there!). Can you expound on your comment that we are co-creators and the power you say we have?

            1. Being a scientist myself (Solid State Physics) I am most interested in “what science has discovered about the power of the mind/thought”. Could you provide some sources of information?
              As for the physical world been manifested by a deeper reality, how many senses would we need and how advanced would our science have to be in order to understand all there is to understand in the observable universe? A friend of mine, a mathematician, once commented to me that he felt that man’s struggle to understand his surroundings was similar to a man peeling an onion layer by layer. I replied that I agreed with the analogy except that instead of peeling the layers away and knowing there would be a last layer, I saw man inside the onion peeling the layers away while moving away from the center. In other words, we do not know if there is a last layer (the ultimate truth, reality). And even if we were to find that ultimate layer, how would we recognize it?

            2. As I mentioned before, I am a scientist (I have a Ph. D. in Solid State Physics). In my field of expertise Quantum Physics is fundamental, so I have studied it from the Fundamentals to Scattering Theory and I do not recall ever seeing a reference made to any relationship between it and the power of the mind/thought as you claim. As for the Genome Project, I am not a biologist but I know enough about it to wonder what the power of the mind/thought has to do with it. I am beginning to wonder about the validity of your statement. Could you, please, provide some specific reputable references I can access?

        2. God couldn’t exist where he is absent, but he could be present where there is evil.
          What is evil? Is it a non-thing like shadow, which is just absence of light? Could evil be the absence of ice cream in your fridge when you have the munchies and 7/11 is closed and the absence of enough gas in your car to get to the all night store?

  2. What I believe the human being has limitation. We can’t explain what the infinity mean and where does it end–will never be able and this is the largeness of the creation. Inf…-5, -4, -3, -2, -1, 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5,—-Inf. Eitherway we go, we can’t end up with a answer where is the limit of everything in the universe. One more thing we can’t create anything wihtout something that is already exist in the universe–we are modifier or users only precisely to say. If I say the whole universe is simply an atom of an another megaverse– who can prove or disprove it? How is if I say there is existence of multi-multi verse or multi-multi-multi verse or precisely infinity-verse. To sum up we are living in a very small area of a huge universe with a very limited knowledge. One more logic is we don’t see God does not necessarily mean God does not exist. There were many things people did not see about cosmology and they did not believe–but we believe as we see. What we don’t see does not mean it doesn’t exist—-it means simply we could not see it or discover it. It is up to us if we believe in God or not. There is no explanation to prove or disprove the existance of God other than belief and using logic and judgement.

    Finally, three major abrahamic religion has preety similarities- we can’t say God did not send message to us aobut his existence. God has said what we should or shouldn’t do. We will be judged on our conscience. These are convincing. The level of torture the varous prophets faced to spread the unifying message means it is unlikely one would take so courage to spread a message without any clue/support from supreme God. None of these is claimed to get benefit preaching these message other than being tortured, opressed. Why should they do so? If one did that could be wrong, the same message has been preached by prophets from generation to generation.
    It is up to us how we think about God.

    1. Torturer: “Take that!”
      Prophet: “Ouch!”
      God: “Suck it up, dude, for I am the Lord they God and it pleases me to see you suffer rather than deny me.”
      Torturer: “And that!”
      God: “Attaboy…hit him again.”

  3. As an Atheist, might it not simply be that the god knows more than we do, by definition, and is all-seeing, and by refusing to let me go on holiday, he saves me – fro example – from hikack that i would have be a victim of – i.e. a greater evil than what i call evil?

    One might say, as a believer in gods, that the evil of permkitting starving babies in the 3rd world saves them from suffering worse deaths in their teens…

    The god-people have an anxwer for everything, I guess.

    How would this apply to the Holocaust and the 2 world wars? Easy, fewer people to commit suicide and die of poverty and starvation… how cynical can you get?

    1. GOD does not do Evil
      GOD is light and GOD is good
      GOD is all knowing and we in our finite minds cannot comprehend that remember we only use lets say 5% of our brains
      A lot of the human suffering we see is brought about by greed and humans not showing love for one another. If europe did not take a lot of resources from africa can you imagine what africa would have been like if they had gone and spread the gospel instead and use trade to develop africa.
      How would the world be without colonialism and racism imagine all the people living in peace.
      that is what we see out there all the galaxies living in peace with wealth beyond our comprehension. If no death exists outside our solar system then you can imagine why the Lord allows the universe to expand continually.
      That is why soon our world and way of living will be interrupted by the Almighty God and harmony will once more be restored
      We must all repent and await the joyful day.

      1. History is replete with examples of bringing the word to the poor folks that don’t have it. Usually the choice given them was convert or die. More recently one can look at Alaska or Canada’s indigenous people being taken by force in some cases and placed in religious schools where they were systematically abused. Any organized religion exists for the purpose of perpetuating itself.

        In my opinion one of the best examples of the fact there is no god is what happens under the guise of religion, not just Christian but all of them. How could an all loving, merciful, good (insert word here) god allow such evil to happen in it’s name. The simple answer is it could not.

        1. There is a fallacy in equating God with the gods of religion. The gods of religion are man’s feeble attempt to know the unknowable. Just because you can’t explain something (like evil in the world), doesn’t mean that you can draw inferences about God – as if God had human qualities. If people wanted to do something productive with their lives, they could stop blaming God for the evil in the world and instead take some personal responsibility for the situation.

          1. My point exactly, there is no god, except for us. We created it in our image and we as a species allow much of the evil that occurs in the world. In some cases we can rise above the pettiness like after a disaster but in others, poverty, crime, random acts of violence we allow it to go on. Some dedicate their lives to helping others, most of us are somewhere in the middle and are willing to tolerate pain in others as long as it does not impact us to much. As a species we should stop imagining that there is some great power that cares about and protects us, there is not. It is up to every individual to do that, hence personal responsibility.

            i understand I wont sway a lot of minds and that is fine. I believe the old adage which I paraphrase here – for those who believe no proof is required, for those who do not, no proof is enough.

            As long as we do no harm to others, I see no harm to believing in god. It provides comfort and a sense of community, My concern is that it rarely seems to stay at that level, someone always seems to believe that they have the right or innate calling to convert or destroy the rest, I find that unfortunate
            I think I have beaten the dead horse enough so this will be my last comment on the matter.

            Enjoyed reading everyone’s input
            .

            1. The injustice you’ve listed are all too real. Since we despise injustice so strongly, there is an indication that there exists a universal, transcendent moral law. Let’s say that God himself despises these injustices too as the supposed author of the transcendent moral law. So, if God despises injustice, wouldn’t he want to correct it and prepare a place for us that has no more death, violence, poverty, etc? What Christians believe is that God did come to correct this injustice by becoming a man and to experience the most profound injustice by his death on the cross. His resurrection is his demonstration of his power over death and his promise that he will exercise this power over death for us as well. His last words on the cross were words of forgiveness to his own persecutors because they did not fully understand their participation in injustice, not hateful words threatening damnation as often misrepresented. And his last words before ascending into heaven were that he was preparing a place for us. Later he describes this place as where there would be no more tears, no more injustice.

              Getting back to your main point: One thing God calls all people to do is not just to not harm others, but to love all others as God loves us, and we’re obviously not forced to love others because a forced or coercive love is not free and therefore is not true love. Because we have the freedom to choose love or hatred for God and man, there exists both the potential for human good and evil throughout the world. There is something profoundly awesome in the power of free love. By the end of our lives if there is a place prepared for those who chose love in there life and for those who chose hate and these two places are mutually exclusive of love and hate, then that determination must be based on our choices in this life where our choice for love can be freely determined. I am inclined to believe that most people choose to love, although many times people fail to love perfectly. I also believe that most people who struggle to believe in God’s existence or struggle to understand the human condition do not knowingly rejecting love. I will give most people the benefit of doubt and assume that they love freely despite their metaphysical beliefs. But let’s not be naive, there are many self proclaimed Christians, Buddhists, Jews, Moslems, atheists and agnostics that all chosen to reject love and have chosen violence of many sorts, and in these examples they have rejected the love.

              I seriously doubt that my argument will convince you or other readers to believe in God or to believe in the resurrection of Christ, etc. But perhaps there is hope that you will wake up today and choose to love everyone in your life with unconditional love. And maybe perhaps also you may see that there are some Christians who believe that God doesn’t condemn sinners to hell and meaningless suffering in this world but has given them the capacity and example to love freely and unconditionally and that love will not go unrewarded.

  4. We (humans) understand right from wrong, good from evil, we know when we do something wrong. God can not change our mind, he lets us make the choices, as he did provide scriptures for us to know the difference. If people have too many children in a country they know, has no food, they should take some form of responsibility not to continue having children. God gave us the organs to produce, he did not tell us to over-produce. once again we must make our own choice ( that is why we are human beings). Typical of humans to always put all the blame on God. If someone becomes ill and dies, it is not Gods fault, we are the ones creating all the poisons and pollution etc.

  5. Your article assumes that string theory (and its cousins, like M-theory) is the real deal. That is hardly the case. It is mathematically a very beautiful theory, but it has failed to make any prediction that is testable. So don’t go overboard with this multiverse idea — at least as of now.

    And Brian Greene (whom you mention) is part of the big propaganda machine that yaps about string theory as if it has become etched in stone.

    I would strongly recommend that you borrow or buy the book The Trouble with Physics written by Lee Smolin.

    It will open your eyes for you.

    ________________________________________________

    1. Well, as I point out in the article several times, it is an assumption, and this is just a philosophical nugget in light of that assumption. The LHC will be ramping up in a few years to start testing it’s predictions so we should know in 5-10 years, whether we are on the right track or not with string theory. :).

  6. Interesting perspective. What I don’t quite get are that assumptions that (a) because string theory and the like mathematically/abstractly/conceptually allow for a multiverse, that somehow we *know* that a multiverse exists (sounds like an awful lot of faith there — Newtonian physics allowed for infinite speed before Einstein did his stuff), and (b) that if anything and everything can happen in such a multiverse, that God’s intervention in one would automatically, somehow, mandatorily lead to the reverse happening somewhere else (are the universes linked in that way and how do we know that?).

    1. We don’t know. As I mention in the article in at least two positions, we are assuming string theory is true. It’s just an amusing little nugget if string theory were to be true.. If it is, my main point is that God wouldn’t exist (well not a personal, conscious, intelligent, creative one)… I don’t think invoking something more complex than the Universe explains creation.

  7. Love the article. Some other alcohol fueled ramblings to follow.
    Accept that the entire old testament is one giant metaphor for intergalactic travel, paradigm-destroying catastrophe, and the preservation of the genetic codes of life in the form of a “dna based seed bank” for eventual recreation (ie “cloning”) of the richly diverse array of life on the planet. Sadly some genomes didn’t restore properly, which is why we don’t see T-Rex and the other dinos bungling about…. I mean, what else would it be about.

  8. Hehe now this is a nice argument 🙂 I now seem to understand why some of my die-hard atheist friends are so happy about multiverses…

    For me the question is slightly more in the line of Epicurus (or, well, sages in the Indian subcontinent who beat Epicurus to both the question and the answer). If there are infinite possibilities in the multiverse, then, well, there might exist universes where there is a God, popping out literally from nowhere. Being alone, and watching the universe unfold — and countless creatures also popping out of nowhere — that same God might have believed that He is the Creator of everything, and this is what He tells his creatures. He Himself has no recollection of having been created, and looking back to His own existence, all He can say is that there was nothing before Him (which would be accurate from His perspective). Also, from the perspective of everybody else, it looks like this God was the first thing to appear out of nowhere, so, others might agree that there wasn’t “anything else”. So this God titles Himself a “creator god” just because He Himself doesn’t know better, but is unaware of every other universe in the multiverse where He doesn’t exist.

    But from a perspective of someone thinking beyond this universe and embracing the multiverse, then, well, this was just a series of random circumstances that made this particular God exist in this particular universe; this God, whatever He styles Himself, just works under a deluded perception that He’s the First Cause and the Creator. Like every other deluded being in this universe, He deserves our compassion for His confusion — but not really “veneration”, and obviously He doesn’t share some of the usual attributes that the Religions of the Book are kind enough to bestow Him.

    This is, of course, not my own idea, but the way Buddhists view the cosmos and the role “gods” play in it. For them — explained 2500+ years ago — the universe has always been a multiverse, and while they admit that “gods” might pop up in them, they are as deluded about their own nature (and the nature of the universe) as everybody else. Buddhist philosophy doesn’t “reject” the idea of a god or many gods being around. What they reject is the idea of a “creator god” since there are alternative explanations — namely, the infinite, eternal multiverse, where pretty much everything that can happen, will happen — and which is the only rational choice that doesn’t enter into impossible paradoxes (“why should we venerate a God that ‘feels lonely’ — a very human attribute, and one worth our pity and compassion, but not veneration — and ‘felt the need’ to create companions?”). Certain Buddhist schools would even classify a “creator god” who has the same kinds of limitations as human (and animal!) beings, like the “need for companionship”, the “urge to be adored and venerated”, the “need to manipulate the environment”, and so forth, as being only worth of compassion and nothing else. After all, a deluded god “believing” he created everything is suffering horribly from megalomania — and while getting a shrink might not be feasible in this case 🙂 this entity still deserves some compassion and loving kindness from us. And yes, there are some stories about beings, filled with compassion for their deluded gods, made an effort to get in touch with them and did their best to show them how the multiverse really works, and bring them to realise that there is no need to feel “lonely”, “frustrated”, “manipulative”, etc. but that there are techniques, which will work even on gods, to ease that suffering 🙂

    Obviously we Westerners with our rationality and logic might frown upon those alleged stories, but the point still remains: if there is a God in our slice of the multiverse who behaves as if He thinks that He created everything out of loneliness or a sense of “being unwhole without a Creation”, then the poor creature is evidently suffering from delusion, and this can also be cured with the appropriate method.

    From my personal point of view as a scientific researcher, I find it very amusing to watch as, after a century of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics, we’re developing a model of the universe/multiverse which comes closer and closer to Buddhist thought in the 5th century BCE. This model was subsequently refined in the next centuries, but not totally rejected — it’s a first good working model on the nature of reality, and there are still lots of Buddhist schools sticking to that model. What will be most interesting to see is what will come next. We already have a few philosopher scientists asking the dreadful question, “What if fundamental particles are not fundamental at all — what does that mean for our universe?” and coming up with answers which look very much like what Buddhist scholars proposed 2200 years ago. Maybe, however, we will still have to wait a few centuries to reach the same conclusions. Or, since we seem to have way more people thinking full-time on these issues than there were in the 2nd or 3rd century BCE in the Indian subcontinent, and have the Internet to quickly spread ideas and talk among ourselves — instead of making long travels for months — it might happen that we come to the same conclusions much quicklier.

    We certainly live in interesting times, as the Chinese proverb goes.

    1. Love your comment. One of the best I’ve received so far. Thanks! By the way, I am not philosophically opposed to a God (though I am to the Judeo-Christian God), nor do I think other atheists should (though it’s not my place to tell them), rather I believe that a God doesn’t actually answer any questions to our existence.. If it turned out I’m wrong, and it is proven, then after a brief and excessive tantrum, I’ll jump in line 🙂

      1. Hi Fourat,

        Fascinating conversations here. Here’s my two cents. First, the god you you are opposed to is better called the pseudo-Judeo-Christian god, because what serious religionists believe is very different from popular descriptions of the deity. Second, I’ve never cared for the idea of multiverses, but only on a purely intuitive level. But after reading your article and some of the follow-up posts, I figured I had to pinpoint what’s bugging me. And voila, I suddenly realized that, logically, if every possible universe exists, then there must exist an infiinite number in which there is no multiverse or competing parallel universes. Since that’s impossible, it seems to me that the concept of a multiverse is also impossible. But I would grant that my proof does not work against a finite number of parallel universes (which also bug me, if less so).

        1. Conceptual flaw here. “Infinite” doesn’t mean everything. For instance, there are infinite points on the line between A and B without continuing down the line from B to C. Thus you could have an infinite number of universes without having to include universes in which there are no other universes.

          1. It’s true that infinite does not necessarily include everything, but in the descriptions of the multiverse, every possible bifurcation of an existing universe happens. One possible bifurcation would be for a universe to bifurcate into one that does not have alternative universes and one that does. But perhaps I could concede that this is only possible intellectually and not in practice, though since multiverse theory is already bizarre, it is rather ad hoc to label this bifurcation impossible.

            Probably a more straight-forward problem with multiverse theory is that since universes are created by alternatives, we can reduce all existing alternatives down to one original bifurcation, which leaves us with essentially the exact same etiological question that has always bothered the philosopher: “How did the (first) universe come into being?” Saying that the universe bifurcates even at the mad rate that the multiverse theory demands doesn’t solve this problem.

            And another question: From whence the energy to create the alternative universe at the moment of bifurcation? And by what mechanism, really?

            Frankly, I think alternative universe theories are partly driven by a religio-political desire to decentralize the universe a la Copernicus in order to somehow defeat what is perceived as ancient religious notions of G-d. That doesn’t mean they’re a priori mistaken, but given the problems such theories create, it’s hard not to see them as having an ideological axe to grind. Of course, for many physicists, they’re just trying to create mathematical models that successfully match experimental evidence, without any particular agenda. But the popularity of certain suggestions can definitely be related to religio-political agendas — both traditional and non-traditional, depending on the suggestion at hand (e.g. orthodox Jews like myself generally like the Big Bang theory for its similarity to medieval rabbinic explanations of Genesis 1). Its hard to be truly objective regarding such matters.

            1. When I was studying Quantum Physics in graduate school and came upon the phenomenon known as tunneling in which a particle, say an electron, cannot escape a certain region of space because the surrounding region requires the electron to have negative kinetic energy (which implies an imaginary number to represent the velocity) and yet the theory predicts a certain probability of escape (corroborated by experimental evidence), I theorized that the electron “jumped” into an alternate universe, traversed across the forbidden region unopposed, and appeared on the other side. This was many years ago, when notions of the possible existence of parallel universes had not become as popular as they are now. I can assure you that feelings of animosity toward religions did not come into my mind at all as you suggest. I was simply trying to explain to myself the apparent imposibility of the tunneling effect. By the way, its called the “tunneling” effect because it is as if the electon had found a “tunnel” through the forbidden region.

          2. Hi Hector,

            I guess you didn’t see the following sentence in my post:

            “Of course, for many physicists, they’re just trying to create mathematical models that successfully match experimental evidence, without any particular agenda.”

            I have no doubt that you were merely speculating, with no religio-political agenda whatsoever. But I’ve read plenty of supposedly scientific accounts where it was clear that the motivation was ideological, and not pure logic. “The Panda’s Thumb” was a classic case, but there are more subtle cases. Another version of the same problem are studies conducted on vitamin supplements, where the authors use what is well known to be a non-therapeutic dose, and then conclude that the supplement in question has no effect. It’s almost weird, but some scientists feel (and big pharma) feel threatened by cheap, widely available solutions to problems that they want to make money off of. And the opposite. There has never been a single double-blind placebo-controlled study of standard chemotherapy (cisplastin, etc) or of radiation. At best they were compared briefly many years ago to the then standard of care, and judged superior, without ever looking at the standard of care vs. placebo. It’s a fascinating phenonemon.

            Another case would be baby monitors. Every meta-study I’ve read has concluded that there is no overall benefit to survival rates, but monitors are associated with an increase in interventions and hospitalizations. This is almost certainly because monitors as used force the mother to lie still, which itself is a risk factor for fetal distress. My wife, a doula, once got to a lady who was already being prepped for her C-section. She saw the monitor, asked how long it’d been on (5-6 hours) and then had the lady walk around without the monitor for a few minutes. Distress disappeared, and natural delivery ensued without incident.

            Anyway, the point is that just because something is published in a peer-reviewed journal doesn’t mean it is good science, and just because scientists (or doctors) use certain procedures doesn’t mean they are based on the best science out there. Personal agendas and egos all too often get in the way. And on that note, I’ll add that I could be totally wrong about alternative universes. I’m open to the evidence, but intuitively must admit I find them unappealing in terms of overall elegance (though they are convenient for situations like the one you described).

          3. Robert K you say ” the popularity of certain suggestions can definitely be related to religio-political agendas.” Well yes, “confirmation bias,” and all that. Those who delight in constructing paradigms that outrage the naive realist have a confirmation bias too. When multiverses allow me to send my coffee cup into the kitchen to refill itself and return to me, then I will be interested, assuming the coffee is properly creamed, as well.

          4. Kilimanjournal, that has got to be the most uber-utilitarian statement I’ve ever read! LOL! If you ever want to change your screen name from kilimanjournal, may I suggest the monicker “John Stuart Mill-ground”? 😉

        2. Hi Robert,

          Thanks for your comment. I don’t think it is possible for there to be a universe in which no other universe exists. If string theory proves true, then it does place an upper limit on the amount of universes, (10^500). For reference, our universe is only 10^17 seconds old. Infinite really only has what little meaning it does have from our perspective…

    2. If you read of the origins of Buddhism you see that Buddha was the first to have a Sermon on the Mount, 500 years before Jesus. All the essential morality of Jesus was stated first by Buddha. He was against the caste system; women are allowed to teach to the same level as men; he refused to discriminate against people because of the colour of their skin, religion or race. He came up with the idea of attaching no importance to clothes or wealth “Consider the Lilies of the Field”. He turned the other cheek to violence. Myth has it that as a child Buddha preached to his elders in the temples. All the positive ideas of Christianity and Islam are derived from Buddhism. The immoral ideas are from Jesus and Mohammed themselves.

      Buddhists never went to war, never sought or forced conversions (the horror of the Crusades are still with us today). Jesus cursed the fig tree to die because it had no figs for his mother, Jesus believed in possession and cursed the swine and drove them into the sea. Judas said to Jesus let’s make a 300 denarii donation to the poor. Jesus said no, “The poor ye shall always have with you.” (John 12:7-8) Later Jesus betrayed Judas.

      Buddha was tempted by Mara (the great illusion) later Jesus is tempted by Satan. The term ‘Immaculate Conception’ was first used of Buddha, though this is a mythological add-on. Buddha was the first to have the term “The Light of the World” applied to him. The words “I am the Truth, the Way, and the Light” are used to define Jesus – Buddhists were the first to use that phrase to define Buddha.

      1. Thanks for the info. I had read in many places that Christianity is just a hodge-podge of previous faiths and stories. It’s no surprise to hear this… Cheers Dao

        1. the immaculate conception of Buddha:

          “The four guardian angels came and lifted her up, together with her couch, and took her away to the Himalaya Mountains. . . . Then came the wives of these guardian angels, and conducted her to Anotatta Lake, and bathed her, to remove every human stain. . . . Not far off was Silver Hill, and in it a golden mansion. There they spread a divine couch with its head towards the east, and laid her down upon it. Now the future Buddha had become a superb white elephant . . . He ascended Silver Hill, and . . . three times he walked round his mother’s couch, with his right side towards it, and striking her on her right side, he seemed to enter her womb. Thus the conception took place in the midsummer festival.”
          When the queen told the dream to her husband, the king, he summoned 64 eminent Hindu priests, fed and clothed them, and asked for an interpretation. This was their answer:
          “Be not anxious, great king! . . . You will have a son. And he, if he continue to live the household life, will become a universal monarch; but if he leave the household life and retire from the world, he will become a Buddha, and roll back the clouds of sin and folly of this world.”
          Thereafter, 32 miracles were said to have occurred:
          “All the ten thousand worlds suddenly quaked, quivered, and shook. . . . The fires went out in all the hells; . . . diseases ceased among men; . . . all musical instruments gave forth their notes without being played upon; . . . in the mighty ocean the water became sweet; . . . the whole ten thousand worlds became one mass of garlands of the utmost possible magnificence.”
          Then came the unusual birth of the Buddha in a garden of sal trees called Lumbini Grove. When the queen wanted to take hold of a branch of the tallest sal tree in the grove, the tree obliged by bending down to within her reach. Holding on to the branch and standing, she gave birth.
          “He issued from his mother’s womb like a preacher descending from his preaching-seat, or a man coming down a stair, stretching out both hands and both feet, unsmeared by any impurity from his mother’s womb. . . . ”
          “As soon as he is born, the [future Buddha] firmly plants both feet flat on the ground, takes seven strides to the north, with a white canopy carried above his head, and surveys each quarter of the world, exclaiming in peerless tones: In all the world I am chief, best and foremost; this is my last birth; I shall never be born again.”
          There are also equally elaborate stories regarding his childhood, his encounters with young female admirers, his wanderings, and just about every event in his life. Not surprisingly, perhaps, most scholars dismiss all these accounts as legends and myths. A British Museum official even suggests that because of the “great body of legend and miracle, . . . a historical life of the Buddha is beyond recovery.”
          In spite of these myths, a traditional account of the Buddha’s life is widely circulated. A modern text, A Manual of Buddhism, published in Colombo, Sri Lanka, gives the following simplified account.
          “On the full-moon day of May in the year 623 B.C. there was born in the district of Nepal an Indian Sakyan Prince, by name Siddhattha Gotama. King Suddhodana was his father, and Queen Mahā Māyā was his mother. She died a few days after the birth of the child and Mahā Pajāpati Gotamī became his foster-mother.
          “At the age of sixteen he married his cousin, the beautiful Princess Yasodharā.
          “For nearly thirteen years after his happy marriage he led a luxurious life, blissfully ignorant of the vicissitudes of life outside the palace gates.
          “With the march of time, truth gradually dawned upon him. In his 29th year, which witnessed the turning point of his career, his son Rāhula was born. He regarded his offspring as an impediment, for he realized that all without exception were subject to birth, disease, and death. Comprehending thus the universality of sorrow, he decided to find out a panacea for this universal sickness of humanity.
          “So renouncing his royal pleasures, he left home one night . . . cutting his hair, donned the simple garb of an ascetic, and wandered forth as a Seeker of Truth.”

          a hodge-podge of stories ????

      2. Jesus went to war ?? Jesus cursed the fig tree in a representation of Israel that bore no fruits of righteuosness and repententace, it was symbolic, lets see personally you plant a tomatoe garden care for it the best you can come july and august no tomateos I think by september you would uproot it too, does thatmake you an evil person ?

        Swine were considered unclean for Jews to raise, he didnt curse the swine it was the demons that possed the swine that drove them over the cliff

        Judas said lets take the 300 D. to give to the poor he was the treasusrer , read the context Jesus and a box of funds to help the poor Judas was a thief he wanted more money in the box to steal he had no intentions of helping the poor ,when Jesus obejected to Judas’ complaint it was becuase Mary was fulfilling scrpiture by doing what she was doing, Judas should have realized that but he was to busy stealing money from the poor

        1. Jesus used very violent language – Buddha didn’t. Buddha would not curse anything that is alive. Uprooting a dead tomato plant is fine, to curse it is sick. Torturing or killing animals is sick. Believing that devils can possess minds is sick.

          If you read the passage about Judas asking Jesus to donate to the poor, there is no suggestion that he was a thief or that he had no intention of helping the poor. The accusations you make are without biblical foundation – to excuse Jesus of selfishness.

          1. Are you referring to this passage? – John 12:5-6

            “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” [Judas] did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

      3. Well, this is totally off-topic, but I wouldn’t affirm those things with such conviction. After all, much of Prince Siddhartha’s life is a mix of myth, oral tradition, and good, solid, logical propositions which trickled down the arrow of time and were written down four centuries after Siddhartha’s passing. While oral tradition meant something entirely different in those days — even nowadays, some Buddhist monks and teachers show astonishing feats of memory, reciting whole books with hundreds of pages totally by heart, not missing a single word or nuance in pronunciation (it’s just a question of training, everybody can do it) — it still leaves a lot open to interpretation.

        Nevertheless, from an historical perspective, it’s not a coincidence that in a certain area a lot of common ideas mixed and merged together. We should not forget that Alexandria, at that time, was the cultural and intellectual capital of the Mediterranean. It was also a free port and quite tolerant. There are a few records of Buddhist Theravada Monasteries in Alexandria, as well as of some Mahayana teachers. Which would be only natural: Alexander the Great found Buddhism during his wars in the western bits of what we now call Pakistan and India, and brought lots of ideas (and people!) back, who settled in the West (in return, he left artists to make representations of the Buddha in the Far East — that’s the reason why there is an established artistical tradition in the Buddhist countries, which didn’t exist before).

        So, in the first century BCE, a lot was going on in a rather small area: from Alexandria to West Pakistan, Greek thought merged with Persian Zoroastrism, esoteric Judaism, Mahayana Buddhism, and even some forms of Hinduism which had been severely contaminated by Buddhism. It’s no small wonder that all these people exchanged ideas among themselves, far more than we tend to think — the Ancient World was not as separated and isolated as we tend to think!

        Tradition says that Jesus’ parents went to Egypt soon after he was born. Alexandria is in Egypt. Coincidence? The point is, shortly after their return, Jesus starts teaching things that would be utterly unfamiliar in the more backwater areas of Palestine (where he used to live). It’s unlikely that Jesus’ teachings were “Buddhist” (since they are clearly theist), but many point out close associations with the Essenes, a gnostic/esoteric group which obviously was closely in touch with the sages in Alexandria and elsewhere, and it’s not unlikely to believe they might have exchanged ideas at that time. It’s also no coincidence that about this time, the Mahayana teachings — emphasizing compassion, loving-kindness, and a goal to reach a level of perfection to be able to teach others to do exactly the same — started to flourish: Siddhartha had taught these sparingly in his alleged lifetime, because “conditions were not right”. But around the 1st century BCE, these ideas were all the rage around the world. Coincidence? Perhaps.

        What I mean is that it’s a bit unfair to say, “Siddhartha had said everything 400-450 years before Jesus, who was just a copycat” (which is implied!). Things are a bit more mixed and fuzzy than that. There are lots of parallels and cross-influences here and there.

        But to get back to my original point, and the one I believe that will matter to science (specially physics, cosmology, and the mind sciences) is that Buddhism presented a rather novel world-view at the time. One which formulates as a hypothesis that there are an infinite amount of universes, ours is just one, each with billions of worlds. On a simplistic first iteration, worlds are made of fundamental particles (but on a deeper scale, there are no fundamental particles, they’re just a convenient abstraction to extract rules about how the universe works). Objects and phenomena appear at the same time that we become conscient of them; the two are interlinked. These are all far echoes of what we today call General Relativity (everything is related to the point of view of the observer), Quantum Mechanics (the fundamental fabric of the universe is at an indeterminate state, but an observer can collapse the wave function and “make things appear in the macrocosmos”), the Anthropic Principle (“someone has to observe the universe for it to exist — why not us?”), and so forth. These are just precise mathematical formulations of hypothesis formulated by Siddhartha and expanded later on by various teachers. However, Siddhartha was little concerned in acquiring knowledge about the universe for the sake of it: his focus was, obviously, on the mind. All those “explanations” were only important for practitioners to recognise that it’s the mind — the observer — that is closely interdependent with the phenomena that appear; they are indissociable. Modern physics tends to reach the same conclusion, but very, very reluctantly accept it. In my discussions around this subject, the usual argument is that the “observer” is merely a mathematical abstraction and doesn’t need to be conscious (i.e. a particle can be an observer, too), This leads to the ironic result that particles behave as if they are conscient 🙂 which is, obviously, absurd — but nevertheless it points to the core issue of the problem: to make all those equations work, we somehow need to define what qualities an “observer” has to have (at the lowest end: the ability to measure something), and it’s very hard to separate those qualities from the ones exhibited by self-conscient minds.

        I truly think that this will have to be settled down during this century. But it means a paradigm shift in science: recognising that mind is not an epiphenomenon of “brain activity”, but rather, that everything we classify as “phenomena” are, in fact, epiphenomena: they only exist because there is a mind there to classify them in the first place. That’s radical thinking 🙂

        Fortunately, we have the good luck of having over 2,000 years of discussions around this very same subject, and the conclusions reached centuries ago have been well preserved and may help as a basis for discussion.

        On the other hand, it becomes easier and easier to explain Buddhism to a Western audience who has at least a scientific, critical mind and just a smattering of Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. Imagine trying to explain that atoms are “mostly empty space” or that we don’t really “touch anything” (we come just as close as possible until electric fields repulse each other — two atoms cannot share the same space!) or even that at each moment, millions of bacteria live and feed on our bodies and that we need them to survive — where does our body begin or end, then? All these things would be very, very hard to explain in, say, the 1850s. Nowadays, however, we are familiar with all those concepts, even though most people don’t bother themselves in understanding the consequences of merely being a cloud of particles in empty space with just a bit more density than the surrounding air 🙂 But at least we can intellectually understand how it works.

      4. I think Moses deserves honorary mention; he lived 800 years before Buddha, and by golly, it’s not his fault he was asked to walk down from Mt. Sinai before preaching to the people! How about calling the speech described in Ex.34:32 “The Sermon Pretty Close to the Mount” What? Not catchy enough? 😉

        1. Moses deserves a dishonourable mention.
          32:27 Then he said to them, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Each man strap a sword to his side. Go back and forth through the camp from one end to the other, each killing his brother and friend and neighbor.’” 28 The Levites did as Moses commanded, and that day about three thousand of the people died.

          Buddha definitely existed, whereas historians consider Moses a fictional character. His two tablets not only contained the 10 commandments but a host of evil rules; nailing your slave’s ear to door jambs, not permitting a freed slave to take his wife and children. If Moses did exist he was a satanic figure.

          32:33 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Leave this place, you and the people you brought up out of Egypt, and go up to the land I promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’ 2 I will send an angel before you and drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. Moses promoted murder and genocide. Zionists today follow his course.

      5. Would the apostles and early Christians face death for a hoax? Why wouldn’t they go on living comfortable lives? Or would they be willing to die because they touched the wounds of Christ’s resurrected body? What makes more sense.

  9. A possible 4th option: What if God was so amazing and loving that it would have been selfish to keep God to Itself?

    This would have been a “Choice Between Evil or Good.” God could choose to be selfish and keep the best thing existence to Itself, or to share it. If God is Love, as the New Testament claims, then for Love to choose evil would undo itself, therefore not exist, (at all, or as it currently was existing). The choice for God could have been, to continue or to cease existing.

    To be, or not to be.

    1. The nature of God isn’t entirely captured by these options. God doesn’t exist in our outside our Universe or the Multiverses, neither is God the grand total (according to Catholic teaching, the largest, most developed Christian denomination). I personally see God as a personification of the ‘living’ Infinite outside the boundaries of my being and understanding, a way of establishing a relationship with, a reaching out toward it’s beauty.
      Many rationalists and atheists in their quest against God seem to have missed last centuries developments in theology and seem stuck in the Enlightenment of the 19th century… not a bad thing in itself as it’s message, like Zarathustra’s, can be worth repeating to some of the holy men in the forests.

        1. Yes, that’s a way to look at it and I agree this happens within lots of people.
          But as a catholic I don’t experience it that way myself and most in my parish & country (The Netherlands) don’t experience it as such, for me it’s like I said the opposite. By personifying God you make ‘it’ less anonymous, less foreign, less abstract so you can enter in a relationship with ‘it’. This does’nt necessarily be a packing away of uncertainty… but entering into an uncertain and open trans human relationship.

        2. The little book called “Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions” illustrates the profound difference one more dimension can make in perception. We try to understand God in 3D, and He exists in XD and all explanation of Him is only understandable in 3D terms, far short of the reality.

          1. “We understand God in 3D, but he exists in XD.” So our 3D god does not exist and the one who does exist is outside of our understanding? So where is the intersection of God and us? Why are we even talking about God?

          2. Really wanted to reply to kilimanjournal (KJ), but no reply button under his/her comment. Anyway, I agree that dimensionality limits are understanding of G-d. KJ, the intersection is in the mind, where neuronal processes happen in XD (see e.g. this article in the Journal of Neuroscience: http://www.jneurosci.org/content/26/14/3667.full).

            To answer your last question, KJ, people talk about G-d because they perceive an Intelligence both behind and within the universe; those who don’t sense any grand intelligence don’t talk about G-d except as a purely psycho-sociological phenomenon.

            1. Having read the article you suggented in your post I have two comments to make. First, the number of dimensions refered to are two (X in XD is 2), hardly a sufficient space for a God capable of creating the universe! Secondly, the authors are referring to “state space”. This is an imaginary space that exists only in our minds as a concept and that you define by choosing as coordinates (dimensions) measurable physical quantities (such as say, momentum and velocity of a particle) of particular significance to the phenomena being observed. This is NOT a space that exists outside of our minds.

          3. Ack! Hector, you are definitely right! That’s what I get for quickly googling “neurons” & “higher dimensions”! Must confess I’d never heard of “state space”, nor did I notice it in the abstract. I’m surprised to see how hard it is to find proper articles dealing with neurons and dimensionality, but I think it an unavoidable connection given the growing work on quantum physics in neurological models. And this time, I’m sure the sample article is relevant: “Quantum physics in neuroscience and psychology: a neurophysical model of mind-brain interaction.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16147524

            I also am very intrigued by the work of Penrose and Hameroff, e.g. “Quantum computation in brain microtubules? The Penrose-Hamero ff `Orch OR’ model
            of consciousness”
            http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/356/1743/1869.full.pdf

            I guess you might respond that quantum events are not necessarily multidimensional events, but I see them as intrinsically bound up with each other.

          4. Robert K, what I meant about talking about God is similar to Dawkins’ “Why are unicorns hollow?” People don’t “perceive an intelligence both behind and within the universe,” rather they posit an intelligence…but then claim they cannot comprehend that intelligence as it operates in another dimension….but then they nevertheless go ahead and make assumptions about its nature…and then further digest and rechew the cud of those assumptions.

  10. Marx compared religion to opium. Opium is relatively harmless. He should have compared it to heroin or cocaine – highly addictive, destroyers of life.

  11. You seem is misunderstand the concept of God entirely. Did you ever consider the idea that the multiverse, or what we understand as the multiverse, is God?

    It would be difficult to design a god who stands apart from its creation, but quite easy to understand that everything which exists comprises God.

    Occam’s razor or not, is that too simple of a concept for your liking?

    1. The way I view God, is that he is a misinterpretation (or personification) of the Universe, very similar, if not identical, to what you’re saying. If this is the case, then the word ‘God’ is a personification of an immaterial entity (universe), and in that case, religion has no place. Some refer to this as the God of Spinoza, who said universe and god are two words describing the same thing. Just that the former produced physics, and the latter birth religion.

      1. The way I view God, is that he is a misinterpretation (or personification) of the Universe … question who is doing the interpreting or misinterpreting ?

        1. humans have the capacity for evil, and for good. It’s not objective, but it does apply to the entire human race. Kind of like a subjective objectivity…if that makes sense

        2. You say:
          “Are you referring to this passage? – John 12:5-6
          “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” [Judas] did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.”

          The bible says no such thing. People make up stories to explain away what is obviously immoral. Jesus didn’t ignore the poor to get back at Judas but because he was contemptuous of the poor.

          Jesus sought martyrdom – he was a suicide, like your modern Islamic terrorists.

      2. Viewing G-d as the sum of the Universe is often called panentheism, though technically panentheism implies that G-d is greater than just the Universe. My own take on this hypothesis is subtly but IMHO substantially different: G-d is possibly identical with the Space-Time Continuum (STC), but not with the matter that is borne of the STC. For the STC (or really any postulated divine framework) to be divine, it must have intelligence. My hypothesis is that superstrings (or perhaps the correlates of superstrings that make up the STC) function on a certain level like neurons, making the STC one giant brain that, when It thinks, creates matter/energy. There is much to explain here, but there’s the basic idea. Comments?

    2. Hi Universe, that’s one view of God but it’s a bit distinct from the conception of God dominant in the west as God the Creator of the Universe/Multiverse.. as Fourat J said: Spinoza’s God. Nothing wrong with that, and perhaps just as religious, just different depending on your theological viewpoint.

  12. Just reread your post a second time, something I frequently do with posts that I liked. Just one thought, though. See what you think. The existence of the multiverse is a big assumption in this exercise. Although, I personally believe in it, it may in fact be proven to be false, or at least somewhat different than was first theorized. Even if true, the reality of a multiverse is no doubt beyond human comprehension as it can not be observed. Instead of 3 options, maybe there’s five, or more – no way of telling or defining an infinite concept with our finite mind. While the whole exercise was very stimulating, it’s probably too hypothetical. Got another question?

    1. Thanks chicagoja! Glad you liked it… Yes, it is very hypothetical. I also point out that it’s an assumption a couple of times, and I hope we do figure out for certain one day, one way or the other. 🙂

  13. Comprehend your own insignificance. “Evil” is an invention of human primates. Endlessness descended to lower and denser frequencies to know Self. Evolution allows the possibility of ascending back up the scale. Believe it or don’t. Believe anything you like. The only “choice” available to you is in the brief interval ‘alive’ in an organic primate body as part of the Earth. Few are either able or prepared to think for themselves. Best to cling to your own subjective mechanical fixed attitudes. Sheep asleep.

  14. Embrace your own insignificance. “Evil” is an invention of human primates. Endlessness descended to lower and denser frequencies and vibrations to know Self. Evolution allows the possibility of reascending. Believe it or don’t. Believe whatever you wish. No difference between the polarity of theists or atheists: each and both trapped in the law of opposites. As long as you are “alive” in an organic primate body and part of the Earth you have some “choice.” How many can actually think for themselves? Sheep asleep.

  15. Can God create a boulder so large he cannot lift it? If you can answer this you are as irrational as the question. Epicurus’ questions are thus so irrational. As light must have dark, so good needs evil. As to the question of God and His existence; the little book called “Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions” illustrates the profound difference one more dimension can make in perception. We try to understand God in 3D, and He exists in XD and all explanation of Him is only understandable in 3D terms, far short of the reality.

    1. If your 3-D brain cannot understand the reality of “God,” how can you evaluate your understanding as being “far short of the reality”? If you know you are wrong, how do you have any confidence that you have any idea how wrong you are? Couldn’t it be the case that your notion of the existence of a god is entirely due to smoking too much crack…or the common tendency to suspend rational thought in order to get along in a dominant paradigm created by priests for their own benefit?

  16. many books have been written and many more will be, just like these posts and ideas. If we were truly willing, we would see there are no ‘new ideas’, just new ways of saying the same things written/spoken throughout history. We have records of events, some say they are not true, yet we know the crusades, wars, births and deaths happened. Today i hear that ‘truth’ is no longer relevant and i am supplied with ‘so called facts’, what an interesting idea. Q: How can a fact be if it is not true? Religion is a dirty word used by organizations to rule over people, relationship is a situation in which 2 or more people enter into for the common ‘good’ or goal of the group. When Godliness is observed toward each other, the greater the ‘good’ can be achieved for all, the opposite happens when 1 or more assume control……The Bible, an account written about creation and asking us to join in the relationship offered by the Creator is read clearly, we realize we do have a choice, just like a marriage proposal, to say ‘yes or no’. This answer does not deny the existence of the one making the proposal, the ‘fact’ is, the proposed does not desire that level of intimacy with the proposer. I have had conversations with God the Creator therefore I cannot deny His existence. I also had an atheist opinion and no desire to become a ‘believer’, yet now, I cannot deny the One who has taught me and shown me amazing truths. I would only ask that if you are interested in TRUTH, ask Him, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to ‘call your name’. If you would do this with honest intentions, I believe you might hear His voice, then you will have understanding to help ‘unravel’ some of the mysteries that surround us. It is wise to know that ‘religion’ destroys relationships, Islam will destroy itself and all who deny ‘their right to dominate and dictate how we should live’ Understanding God’s purpose for us and with us will give us peace of mind and heart with clear knowledge of the eternity He has prepared for us. May God bless you all in your quests for truth and answers on your journey.

    1. Andy, you say, “If we were truly willing, we would see there are no ‘new ideas’,” No, sorry, I am not willing not to have new ideas. You know, many people have conversations with something they think is god. Some of them then fly airplanes into buildings, or engage in other irritating behavior. This is treatable.

  17. Anti-theist logic used to be tighter than this. Now, escapes from reason such as exhibited in this article seem to be in vogue!

    1. I can’t speak for my commenters, but as you can see, there are many here who aren’t happy with what I wrote, and I haven’t approved dozens of inflammatory comments directed at me.

      As for myself, I’m just exploring reason and logic. I don’t think God exists, and I try to show why I think that way.
      .

    2. The belief in God has encouraged people to commit mass murder, paedophilia, incest, hate crimes against women and gays, religious persecution, impoverishment leading to misery and starvation, war after war. With God in charge you don’t need Satan.

    3. It is not difficult to prove that god does not exist, virtually every avenue leads there if one removes blind faith.

      In the beginning there was big bang, that led, after billions of years to the evolution of a species on a tiny planet at the outside of a typical galaxy. Evolution is the driving force of development for living creatures. As such, it stands to reason that there is an evolutionary advantage to religion. I cannot say what it was originally, perhaps the hope that there is something better enabled primitive man not to give up when times were tough. Perhaps it fostered a feeling of community that helped the group survive. Maybe it just helped us explain the unexplainable. Later, it became a great way to gain power over others who believed. Wars could be fought, the population controlled, wealth was at hand as long as one could put themself between others and god. Have it’s ear so to speak. That is where we are today. Pick your religion, christian, muslim, new age, worship the rock down the way, moonies, scientologists or fill in the blank, there will be someone or group that controls the rest, not by force but by faith with a little force thrown in.

      What came before big bang, I dont know, perhaps an infinite string of big bangs.

      All religion falls apart under the scrutiny of logic and scientific method, it cannot stand the light of day. Strip away emotion and one can see that there is no reason that we must exist, we believe that there is because it makes it easier to come to terms with our ultimate fate. As long as that is not forced on others, there is nothing wrong with a little self deception as long as we realize that is what we are doing.

      So, disproving god is easy, remove faith and he, she or it is gone. The hard part is believing in a god that cannot be felt, seen or that refuses to makes itself known, that takes faith in the unknown and unprovable

    4. Cinda asks why we “work so hard at trying to prove no existance of God.” This is a good question which seems to hint at “Those who blaspheme still believe.” (See Murmer of the Heart by Louis Malle, the last good French movie.) Personally, I enjoy being right, especially when other people are wrong. Aggressive atheism endows me with a delicious sense of superiority, and the freedom to be honest about my smugness without fear of punishment in the afterlife. Plus, yeah, it’s actually a righteous cause, as elaborated here by others.

  18. The statement … “The physics of today points (notice I have not said proves!) towards a multi-verse theory i.e., our universe is not the only universe that exists, but rather just one ordinary universe amongst an infinite number of universes” is irrational.

    The ‘multiverse’ is a hypothetical construct of ‘many universes’ coined originally by William James to describe what lay beyond our cosmological horizon. Hypothesized parallel universes are not repeatable observable things and so are metaphysical by definition.

    Physics and physical science do no such thing as point our attention to multi-verse theory. This is a leap of faith on your part to suggest this. But this is not to say metaphysics (philosophy) don’t point us in that direction – but philosophy and metaphysics is not ‘science’ or ‘physics’. Science, in fact, has nothing to say on the matter. Because we cannot see beyond our cosmological horizon we abandon science in favour of logic and reason of metaphysics.

    But if logic and reason of metaphysics can speculate on what lies beyond our cosmological horizon about one universe or many, the same logic and reason of metaphysics can also be used to speculate on ‘how’ order arose from chaos, or ‘how’ something began to exist in the first place, why our observable universe appears to be fine tuned, and how life arose from non-life.

    Whether or not our universe is the only one is as much a scientific question as questions about God, and no less rational.

    1. Hi Andrew,

      Thanks for your comment. The multiverse theory, as I stated, arises naturally out of current descriptions of the universe, and here are some quotes to back that up by physicists:

      “But physics is full of ideas that are completely counterintuitive, and multiverse theories fall naturally out of long-standing ideas of physics.”

      “The multiverse hypothesis at least arises as a natural consequence of certain theories that have a sound, evidential basis.” – Rosenhouse

      “Parallel universes are not a theory—they are predictions of certain theories.” – Max Tegmark

      There are many more quotes like this. Anyway, that by no means, proves that the multiverse exists, and I never make the case they do, though I base my argument on assuming they are. But it was not invented, it’s not a leap of faith. It follows logically from our current theories, not in spite of them. They make testable predictions, both statistical and observational, that can be verified (or disproved). As such, we will come upon a day when we can either verify or disprove them, and there was no leap of faith anywhere.

      Here is one last quote by Max:

      “It’s proven remarkably hard to write down a theory which produces exactly the universe we see and nothing more.”

      1. A reality limited to “exactly the universe” we see is very attractive. The universe of Galileo and subsequent telescope-peering peepers is a pain in the ass. I’m still trying to get my cellar organized and a nice, neat, earth-centric cosmology featuring a firmament of stars holding back the waters of heaven is about as much additional complication as I can tolerate. Multi-universes threaten to overload my circuits and cause an aneurysm. Don’t I have the right to choose a belief based on my comfort level?

  19. Why limit it to one God, why not several or even a multitude? A hierarchy of Gods even. A supreme remote mechanistic God that kicked the universe/s into existence and that then moved on to newer pastures beyond our conceptual ability. Since then lesser Gods have come to exist and stepped into the vacancy.
    Perhaps as life and intelligence evolved such life creates Gods in their own image, perhaps life itself is a God, as in the Gaian concept. Perhaps every life endowed planet is a God.
    Information theory says that an all knowing God is impossible because a database knowing the information about every physical particle in the universe would need to be greater than the universe. In like fashion the human brain does not know what every cell in it body is doing. Perhaps like the brain God simply exercises a general control, much occurs outside his awareness. Are Angels hormones?
    Again there is the concept of “bootstrapping” or self excitation, feedback. If intelligent life, or some other force, created an all powerful God, then God can obviously manipulate the past to ensure his creation.

    1. Ian your multi-level marketing concept of God and sub-gods has already been invented. Mormons believe Jesus is God Jr., the Jehovah who created this world under the authority of God Sr. If we are good, we can be gods too and create our own worlds under the authority of Jesus, then maybe go on to have gods under us. No, I am not making this up. We really did just barely escape being under the authority of a president who actually believes in this (and by all appearances didn’t actually believe in anything else).

      1. kiliman, hardly my concept, many religions have concepts of the older Gods, the Greeks even had three generations of them. You are by your own admission an atheist so can afford to mock the entire godly setup, fortunately for you most Gods seem to have a sense of humour, at times a distinctly warped sense of humour, just look around you for the proof. But be wary of Yahweh, he seems distinctly lacking in humour, takes himself very seriously. Might I suggest Hanuman or Loki for you or perhaps the Jester God of the Mayans.

        1. “You are by your own admission an atheist” well, yeah, but only under torture, otherwise I am true to my faith and proudly proclaim that I am an asatanist.
          As for the Jester God of the Mayans, his number was recently disconnected…apparently it had something to do with the end of the world.

      2. kiliman, hardly my concept, many religions have concepts of the older Gods, the Greeks even had three generations of them. You are by your own admission an atheist so can afford to mock the entire godly setup, fortunately for you most Gods seem to have a sense of humour, at times a distinctly warped sense of humour, just look around you for the proof. But be wary of Yahweh, he seems distinctly lacking in humour, takes himself very seriously. Might I sud of the Mayans. ggest Hanuman or Loki for you or perhaps the Jester God of the Mayans.

  20. If there is a multiverse then there is a universe that never existed etc. which is paradoxical and endless variations of reality that have absolutely no consequence to this reality anyway and so is completely irrelevant but for being irrelevant it’s just plain wrong and inconsequential. And it is a theory that has been around for years (see sliders tv show where the guy jumps around reality through wormholes) but again it is one of those myths. In the hebrew scriptures I understand the universe exists in the depths of God and there may be a dimension in which beings that have life but not mass exist and well what is significant is consciousness so what is relevant is that which affects ones conscious mind, pleasure, enjoyment, anger, pain etc. and the story I’m told goes, it was pleasant at first (creation) but then it brought God sorrow so he decided to can it but then he also decided to rescue what parts of it he wanted and then later it will be remade as good as it was at first eg. for example meaning the people who are salvaged out of creation will enjoy a new creation after this one has finished it’s course and the long and short of reality is people in the here and now are still subject to pain death sorrow misery and evil but in the future after dying God will raise the dead and put creation back in order so, one suffers the inconvenience in the meantime because it was good but then was bodged but the good news is there is a time appointed to fix it. And that is life mostly, appointments bodges and fixes you get reality 1.1 after death in the ancients explanation of the universe.

  21. Or not necessarily dying but being taken by God but that rarely happens and the notion of faith is believing what the prophets of God said even though the promise for the future has not yet arrived if you believe you have an appointment at the dentist you will show up at the right time and place but if one or the other does not keep it well you might see it as breaking faith or something like it well the prophets say in the same vein those who keep faith will enjoy future benefits and more or less those who do not show up at the appointment won’t – it depends on your choice. There is enough evidence to support what they said and God often it is told went out of his way to prove his presence, through the exodus from egypt, elijah vs the baal worshippers, to the ministry of Jesus and subsequent revelation and mission to reconcile the nations to the same faith in the same God of Israel who started the whole work and it is a matter of individual choice faith to believe what he said or not which in turn is the motivator for ones actions whether you believe or not. If you aren’t a believer then the proposed benefits, reconciliation, peace, end of religious warfare, etc, won’t happen either.

  22. and if there is a universe that didn’t exist then nothing can have existed since we are quite sure that the universe exists then the paradoxical theory does not explain anything about the reality we know, and can be logically dismissed. theo or otherwise. If you don’t believe then you sort of motibate yourself into whatever conflicts are going where the believer seeks after the peace and reconciliation of a common faith even if he has not yet attained it in full – believing that if it is not yet, it shall be.

  23. This sounds more like random irrationality than random rationality. Without a shred of proof, various fantasies are postulated as possibilties and then hypothesized as probability. Just because something can possibly logically exist doesn’t mean that it does.
    Sanity is to know (from our restricted perception of our realm of existence) what is real to our realm and what is not. Insanity is not being able to tell the difference.
    One of the greatest insanity of our times are all the people who being leading experts on their field of expertise and consider themselves intelligent and smart, yet without thoroughly studying and examining all the information available on some other subjects make pronoucement and judgment like they already know everything there is to know about everything.
    If anything at all can be said of the Christian faith, based on the records that supposedly form the basis for this faith, is that it is the most delibrately misunderstood of all that are purposedly misunderstood in order that they can be intentionly misrepresented.

    1. It’s the happy pill the miserable do not want to take. One day God will immunise mankind against evil mortality pain and death and he will be happy again. The anti dote. Faith is believing it will be so even if it does not seem to have happened yet. The reason for that is that, the mortal must die once in order for all to take effect. Death is no longer a tragedy to the mortal who believes in Jesus. Their attitude was well once the message is delivered, the messenger can go his merry way. The point is to ensure people have heard it, if they don’t believe it.

  24. So if there is a universe where nobody dies then nobody would die in this universe because that universe would keep the people in this universe from dying and they would be doing all the other variations of the things the other realities were doing. But since you can observe people die it’s simply not true that people have not died anywhere else. It is a theory so paradoxical to reality that it can easily be dismissed. When you wish something had happened somewhere else differently, you want a multiverse. But like most other things you don’t get it.

    1. Boring Lec: Multiverses challenge the way we think, but the history of science should help us see that some of the ways we think have been wrong and more mistakes may still be deeply ingrained. The universe does not revolve around a central earth, we aren’t special, there is a limit to how fast things can go, not everything necessarily has a beginning, etc. In a multiverse reality, perhaps it does not make sense to say that another universe is “anywhere else.” If there are other universes, they aren’t here, yet it is not accurate to say that they are somewhere else, as if occupying another sphere that exists somewhere out there beyond the finite dimensions of this universe.. Here in this universe, this universe is everything; in other universes those universes are everything. This does not make sense in our brains, but the problem may just be our brains.

      1. It’s a point of veiw. Everything important to your life, ecosystem, relationships are on earth so why wouldn’t people think it is the centre of their universe? Is it a mistake? Because even in a multiverse model you would say good things happen and bad things happen which is no different to our present knowledge and experience nor would a multiverse be useful in any way in dealing with problems in this universe. So if your galaxy is like an algal bloom floating in space there are other galaxies. But in a multiverse there has to be a universe that never happened. So if that one didn’t happen this one couldn’t have either. And if your universe was an algal bloom amongst many you still can’t alter anything about the good/bad paradigm. So I would abandon the theory personally and I think it makes no difference but I think that beyond the mass of our galaxies is null space. The same everywhere space that is one point of infinite capacity. The galaxies of mass are different points that you can measure the distance between – but are still inaccessible to be useful.

  25. The life we are living today can be a fatal mistake tomorrow …wat we think we know today can be totally wrong in the next generation ….IT is good to think using this little brains of ours at this time …but truth is hidden in a seed.Wether he exist or not ,it doesn’t really matter on how this world is ruled ..The System of things designed by mankind

  26. The artcile’s depiction of the multiverse hypothesis is unfortunately contrived and confused.

    The multiverse lends credence to theories of chaotic inflation and d-brane cosmology (M-theory), where it is postulated that different physical laws emerge for every bubble universe.

    Unfortunately, the author confused these with the outdated many-worlds interpretation (MWI) of quantum mechanics, which is used by theorists 4 decades ago as candidate to explain away “wave function collapse”.

    MWI postulates that the universe splits itself every time a particle interact with another.

    MWI is one of dozens of interpretations of QM that are not just outdated but also inconsistent with each other as they try to wrestle with QM’s philosophical implications.

    The scientific community in general consider MWI and other “interpretations” that try to philosophize QM as pseudo-science. Empirical evidence show via probability amplitudes that quantum events don’t have equal probabilities (In MWI, events have equal probabilities = 1 as they split into new universes).

    Decoherence (derivative of Coppenhagen interpretation) and not MWI is considered as the de facto legitimate approach to understanding QM.

    Chaotic inflation and d-brane cosmology, on the other hand, should not be contrived with MWI, as they are subject of valid academic research and not just mere philosophy like how MWI is.

    These theories are inconsistent with MWI since they propose universes that have different laws and NOT a multiverse where all possibilities are realized.

    In MWI, universes branch (and is dependent) from other universes.
    In chaotic iinflation, universes emerge from the quantum vacuum indepent from other universes.

    In 2011, the nobel prize for physics was awarded for the discovery that the universe has a positive cosmological constant (deSitter space) and it is already proven that deSitter space have a fixed space-time boundary, which means that the multi-verse, even if true, have a finite beginning in time (Alan Guth and Alexander Vilenkin, proponents of inflationary theory).

    As consequence, there are no infinite number of bubble universes springing from an infinite past.

    In d-brane cosmology, infinite universes are prohibited since there is an exchange of gravitons for every d-brane containing a universe. An inifinte number of d-branes would result to the multiverse’s collapse due to gravitation.

    The author however seems to be a fan of multiverse hype commonly shown but loosely explained in cable TV, youtube and blogs, which philosophize the theory beyond their scientific scope.

    This article is a good example of how multi-verse theories are misunderstood, misused and abused.

  27. GOD’s Knowledge is Infinite and our knowledge is very peanut, So we can’t Judge GOD.
    We are Mortal and GOD is Immortal.
    GOD with his infinite wisdom he created every thing out of nothing and hanged every thing on nothing.
    Bible talks:- Fools say there is no GOD.
    All our life we have to do only one thing, Just humble lower than dust before GOD and worship, honor him. Because GOD so loved the world and he gave his one and only son Lord Jesus Christ that who so ever believeth on him should not perish but have everlasting life(Means Eternal Heaven)

  28. I will not delve into the “God Issue” but only muse about the so called landscape of the multiverse. After reading arxiv 1208.5715 (top 10^500 not to belive..)
    The author does not think that solutions of M-theory can tunnel to each other.

    My interpretation of this is that the multiverse is more like one of the Julia sets rather than the Mandelbrot set.

    But in Tegmarks level 4 multiverse these other solutions could still be present transcending space and time of our multiverse ( call it the HellOfAMessaverse )

    And does this makes you any wiser in any way…hmm think so 😉

  29. Funny, I knew that you you would choose option 3 long before I read to the end of your piece. Perhaps in a different universe I would have been surprised by your conclusion or you would have reached a different one.

    Nonetheless, I am constantly amused at man’s attempt to conceptualize the omnipotence of God. The only way that any of us can understand him is to make him smaller and us bigger. In the case of science, it is necessary to make him disappear completely. We do this by drawing conclusions that are far too fantastic for us to comprehend–choosing rather to impute the acts of the supernatural to “chimps on typewriters.” Certainly, if something is impossible for us, it must also be impossible for him. Somehow, adding zeroes to a number makes the impossible, possible. That’s human math and logic.

    An omnipotent God is not at all troubled by the dilemmas faced by scientists and philosophers. His existence is in no way dependent upon the realities and confines of our existence. Rule number one of godhood… God makes the rules and is only subject to them if he so chooses. Think of the universe as a snow globe. The one who made it decides the weather. He can set it on a shelf and forget about it, or he can admire his handiwork. Everything inside the globe can only experience what has been placed inside it. The rules that govern the snow globe are called “physics.”

    In our little snow globe of a universe, what seems infinite is really just above our pay-grade. Just beyond our reach, the universe has a beginning and an ending point. There are a finite number of atoms in the universe that have been assigned to the task of providing us a home. Their movements and locality are purposeful and orchestrated… dancing to the beat of God’s algorithm.

    Not only do we fail to recognize the omnipotence of God, but we are blind to the revealed nature of God. His Echod or oneness is a “compound unity.” Outside of the snow globe, 1+1+1=1. It defies all we are able to comprehend from this lowly vantage point. God can have fellowship with himself through the relationship of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Each facet of God has been progressively revealed to men via the prophets and ultimately by God in the Flesh. The Memra is a thread woven through the biblical text that was given to lead men to their God and Messiah, Yeshua. From creation to eternity, God speaks of himself and challenges men to have faith in what he cannot possibly understand.

    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)

    That is the answer to the Theory of Everything.

  30. It seems odd that no one has mentioned that an infinite number of possibilities would include some in which god (or gods) exist. There should be all sorts of universes with all sorts of gods in them, as well as ones with no gods.
    Which raises the interesting question of how or whether we would be able to tell the difference.

    1. If by god you mean a being from one universe that then creates another universe, then sure, what you say could be true. (Some scientists in our universe want to create another universe so this may not be so far-fetched.) But that being (or scientist) would not be omniscient nor omnipotent, and therefore not God by definition.

      Someone raised a similar question somewhere in these comments saying, if every universe existed then surely there is a universe where no other universes exist, but this cannot be, because other universes still exist in the multiverse so there cannot by definition, a universe without other universes. It’s just a confusing play on words.

  31. Epicurus did not really understand his own proposition. If men are immortal, then evil does not have to be the great boogeyman he believes it to be. It can be the means by which god teaches us to value good. Epicurus reveals his lack of faith, in believing that evil takes things from people that are irreplaceable, but if we are immortal…then nothing is irreplaceable, except our ignorance of good and evil. Just a thought.

  32. Hey everyone,
    I know this is an old post but I bumped into it surfing for multiverse info. Im not any kind of trained physist but ive read several books including the Bible, Septuagint, the Apocryphas and on Quantum Physics and Plank theory. After deliberation I have formed my own opinion (which is what everyone here has basically done).
    I feel the multiverse could exist but in an incomplete basis, new universe are continuously being created by black holes as thier super dense matter in forced thru the anti matter wall at plank to the -36 power, the minute amount of matter (yet massive to the 35 power due to plank differential) that is released into the antimatter field is obilterated instantly and creates all the quark matter necessary to form an entire universe, now multiply that by the number of black holes out there, and infinite is within reach. this is basically us being in the macroverse and the dense matter going into a microverse. Now as for god i feel he maybe a omni being from another macroverse coming to our microverse to that effect his essence would be greater than the whole of this universe giving him total awareness and control of it. his subsequent loss of power is due to the reduction of available free quark matter (magic equals random probablity or quarks).
    Once again im just a guy with his own opinion and im more towards agonistic in thinking.
    I have read all the entries here and enjoyed the debate!
    Thanks

  33. Or God could be love. To have love you have to have two things: Others (the trinity has always existed) and free choice. To have free choice is to be able to rebel. God would rather risk rebels than have robots. Therefore, he created beings with free choice so He could have love. It is clear that information only comes from intelligence. Life and the universe itself require tremendous amounts of information (Ever study the DNA?). Therefore, either the intelligence that created the information has always existed or information does not exist. I’ll go with the former since it is the only logical conclusion.

  34. I have been researching this topic for almost my entire life. I may not know much, but I have my doubts as to whether or not God does actually exist. I came to this site by entering the words “What choice did god have in creating the universe” into Google and hit I’m Feeling Lucky, for I am actually feeling quite lucky today. I read through the entire paper and all the comments and let me first say this, many of the people who have posted on your site have so many intelligent hypothesis that it makes my head hurt. I, for one, believe simply that without creationists, there would never be dreamers. And without dreamers, no creationists. The dreamers being the scientific proof. I am not a man of God, nor an Atheist. I am a scientist and I believe in the logic that has been presented before me.

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