I was reading St. Thomas’s commentary on Job (which is remarkable, by the way), and came across this interesting remark he makes in passing.
“Note that those who deny providence say that everything which appears in the world occurs from the necessity of natural causes, for example, the necessity of heat and cold, of gravity and lightness or something like this. Divine providence is most powerfully demonstrated by those things which cannot be explained by natural principles like these, one of which is the determined quantity of the bodies of this world. For no reason can be assigned from some natural principle why the sun or the moon or the earth should be a certain mass (quantity) and not a greater or lesser one.”
It seems to me this is a good argument for the existence of a supreme intelligence because, if we do say that there is no God, there really is, in the end, no reason why there is the amount of mass there is in the universe. Why, for example, did the “singularity” which either popped into being uncaused (absurd) or existed timelessly and changelessly until it entered time and begand to change for no cause (also absurd) contain just the amount of “stuff” in it as it did? The only answer would be “it just did.” This seems a very unsatisfying answer, particularly from a scientific standpoint. In the end, “it just did” is the best explanation of why the singularity was the precise way it was - with it’s unimaginable laws of fine tuning to make it life permitting, which just so happened to pop into being themselves, uncaused?
That is the height of scientific fideism in my mind.
Also, I was thinking that, whatever “laws” of physics or nature there were, they either existed before the singularity existed, or at the same moment the singularity popped into being, or after the singularity existed.
If they existed before, I can see no reason why the universe wasn’t created before it was, unless you posit a “it just did” response.
If they existed simultaneously with it’s popping into being, this seems the height of absurdity, because we really would be talking about everything coming into being from metaphysical nothingness - no gravity, time, space, etc. This response would entail automatically a supernatural cause, unless one wanted to destroy science and give just another “it just did” response which amounts to nothing more than a bald and an unprovable fideistic assertion.
If they existed afterward, then what, scientifically could be said to prompt a “singularity,” which existed in a state totally unknowable or impossible to be imagined, to change? What could it have changed by, or what caused it to change, if there were no laws of nature or physics? One could say there were “laws,” but they were different, and did not operate in the way we observe nature operating now, but this, in the end, is nothing more than science fiction - mere baseless assertions or stabs in the dark.
Now, I hear all the time people accusing Christians of appealing to the special pleading, “God did it” response, but what in the world is special pleading if not the enormously unverifiable speculation which is being offered by “modern science”?