Theology corner: Does God need a cause?
TotheSource ("Challenging Hardcore Secularism with Principled Pluralism") offers an interesting item on God as the "First Cause," taking issue with the claim of some atheists (principally Dawkins and Harris) that God must be an infinite regress of causes. (As in "What caused God?", for example, and then "What caused the thing that caused God?", and then "What caused the thing that caused the thing that caused God?".) Of course, even in this world, we encounter causes that cannot be regressed. For example, the facts of arithmetic are final causes as far as math is concerned. There is nothing to look behind for a further cause, though you can in fact surmise an infinite wisdom that creates these facts and holds all things in being. Eugene Wigner has written on the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics,
the enormous usefulness of mathematics in the natural sciences is something bordering on the mysterious and that there is no rational explanation for it.I think that by "rational" explanation, he means an explanation that appeals to other causes (chaos, a further regress, et cetera). Such si the temper of our times that laws that actually work are not considered a rational explanation.
Are you looking for one of the following stories?
My U of Toronto talk on why there is an intelligent design controversy, or my talk on media coverage of the controversy att he University of Minnesota.
A summary of tech guru George Gilder's arguments for ID and against Darwinism
A critical look at why March of the Penguins was thought to be an ID film.
A summary of recent opinion columns on the ID controversy
A summary of recent polls of US public opinion on the ID controversy
A summary of the Catholic Church's entry into the controversy, essentially on the side of ID.
O'Leary's intro to non-Darwinian agnostic philosopher David Stove’s critique of Darwinism.
An ID Timeline: The ID folk seem always to win when they lose.
O’Leary’s comments on Francis Beckwith, a Dembski associate, being granted tenure at Baylor after a long struggle - even after helping in a small way to destroy the Baylor Bears' ancient glory - in the opinion of a hyper sportswriter.
Why origin of life is such a difficult problem.
If you like this blog, check out my book on the intelligent design controversy, By Design or by Chance?. You can read excerpts as well.
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