Scientific argument for God's existence

Hi everybody,!

First of all, I would like to say that I belive that faith is a gift.

However, as a physiscist, I would like to share what I think is the strongest rational argument for God’s existence, i.e. the mathematical representability of the natural laws. A well-known result of modern science is that natural phenomena can be sytematically predicted through a specific system of few mathematical equations, the laws of physics. The laws of physics describe nature in terms of quarks, quantum fields, bosons, etc.; all these terms actually refer to abstract mathematical models which are the elements of a complex mathematical theory. Unless you consider the success of the laws of physics, which represents the basis of modern technological progress, as an unbelievably lucky series of coincidences, you should agree with the idea that our mathematical models describe the intimate structure of the universe; such structure would consist of abstract mathematical relations, because this is what the laws of physics express.

Since mathematical equations and mathematical models are abstract concepts, which cannot exist independently from a mind conceiving them, the existence of this mathematically structured universe does imply the existence of an intelligent and conscious God, conceiving it according to such mathematical structures.

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I love it. It’s kind of a new modern spin on Aquinas first cause.

It seems to me that the crux of this argument relies upon the ‘laws of physics’ being prescriptive, rather than descriptive. Laws of nature aren’t the same as jurisprudence - they aren’t handed down by a lawgiver. At least, we can’t say that in an argument for God’s existence, otherwise we beg the question.

If the maths is a model we use to describe nature, is it impossible to conceive of a nature without minds to do the describing? I think 1+1=2 doesn’t depend on an outside mind. In the same way I don’t know if one proton and one neutron makes hydrogen requires a mind to recognize that. The maths would work, just, go unrecognized. Especially because mathematics itself is a logical model itself. Unless Plato was right. But that seems doubtful to me.

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Scientists are well known for their lack of ability when it comes to grammar,

I can speak, I am a scientist.

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Your argument is not specific to the Abrahamic God, it could just as well be an argument for Vishnu’s existence. It applies to all creator gods.

$0.02

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This I believe that is similar to the fifth way.

Mathematical equations are foundation of any reality. Reality is like this or that. This doesn’t prove anything.

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Laws of physics are only approximations which are subject to modification depending on future experimental evidence.
Take for example Newton’s Laws of motion. They did not give the correct value for the precession of the perihelion of Mercury. Laws of mathematics, as given by mathematical theorems, are not approximations, but are exactly true within the assumed axiomatic framework.

However, Einstein doubted that God would be OK with the quantum theory or at least it seems so according to his much quoted statement that God does not play dice with the universe.

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Why do you think this means there is one God? Why not a thousand? Or one God that creates a new one before going out of existence, forever? Or a God that existed only for a millisecond? Or a God who other than creating things has no knowledge or power? Or an evil god (that would explain a few things)? Or Zeus?

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Rhubard wrote : " In the same way I don’t know if one proton and one neutron makes hydrogen requires a mind to recognize that. The maths would work, just, go unrecognized. Especially because mathematics itself is a logical model itself."

I think you have missed my point; according to the laws of physics, one proton and one neutron does not make an hydrogen atoms, because the existence of an hydrogen atom requires complex asbract mathematical relations, Actually, the existence of the neutron itself requires complex abstract mathematical relation, because the intuitive notion of classical particle cannot be applied to the microscopic realm.

The fact that mathematics itself is an abstract rational model, implies that the hydrogen atom cannot exist without an intelligent God who conceive it through such abstract mathematical model.

GiftofMercy wrote: “Scientists are well known for their lack of ability when it comes to grammar,”

I am italian and my english is not so good; I apologize for my mistakes

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Rossum wrote: “Your argument is not specific to the Abrahamic God, it could just as well be an argument for Vishnu’s existence. It applies to all creator gods.”

I agree; my argument simply proves the existence of an intelligent Creator.

STT wrote: “This I believe that is similar to the fifth way. Mathematical equations are foundation of any reality.”

The idea that “mathematical equations are foundation of any reality” is an arbitrary assumption which I have never made. What I am saying is exactly the opposite: we have discovered that our universe has a mathematical structure, and there is no reason why this should be the case. The only logical conclusion we can draw from this is that there is an intelligent Creator.

Actually the first scientists (Galileo and Newton) who began to use mathematical equations to express the natural laws, were christians and they justified their choice because they believed that the universe was a creation of an intelligent God. Their intuition has certainly revealed one of the most fruitful intuitions in history and all scientists now accept the idea that the natural laws can be expressed through matemathical equations, even if some of them (atheists and agnostics) seem not to understand the theological implications of this fact.

This is the fact which I mentioned.

By the way, welcome to the forum.

AlNg wrote: " Laws of physics are only approximations which are subject to modification depending on future experimental evidence. Take for example Newton’s Laws of motion."

Actually Newton’s laws are still considered valid in many situations and they are currently used , in spite of the fact that they date from the XVII century. Physicists have discovered that more general mathematical models are necessary to describe natural phenomena which were not correctly predicted by Newton’s law, for example microscopic phenomena The point is that advances in physics had always led to more and more abstract mathematical models.

AlNg wrote: “However, Einstein doubted that God would be OK with the quantum theory or at least it seems so according to his much quoted statement that God does not play dice with the universe.”

Yes, Einsten didn.t accept Quantum theory and he tried to find alternative theories; but he failed and lost his battle against quantum mechanics, which has been confirmed by millions of experiemntal data and is the basis of all modern technological progress.

I would like to report a well known quotation by Einstein about maths:

“How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought which is independent of experience, is so admirably appropriate to the objects of reality?”

But the validity of quantum mechanics argues against the existence of God, not for His existence. Here is why.
God is all knowing. He is omniscient and knows everything. But Quantum mechanics, “which has been confirmed by millions of experimental data and is the basis of all modern technological progress.” says that God cannot know both the exact position and the exact momentum of a particle at the same time. The more accurate He knows the position of the particle, the more uncertain is He of its momentum. How can this be so for an omniscient God ?

Augustine presented a similar argument on the basis of abstract universals.

I wouldn’t call it a scientific argument, though. Not in the modern sense of the word.

Methinks you’re confusing God for man.

Well, if God does know the exact position and the exact momentum of a particle, does that not mean that quantum mechanics is not the splendid theory that it is claimed to be?
See this:

QM makes no reference to the knowledge of God. You’re being absurd.

Even if I were to begin to indulge you, there’s a stark difference between how man obtains knowledge by observation and the senses (and it’s the act of such observation which makes the uncertainty, because observing affects the observed) whereas God does not know by observing but because he is the efficient cause of any given thing from moment to moment and he knows his own action.

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AlNg wrote: "But the validity of quantum mechanics argues against the existence of God, not for His existence. But Quantum mechanics says that God cannot know both the exact position and the exact momentum of a particle at the same time. "

Absolutely wrong. Quantum mechanics does not say anything like that, because

  1. quantum mechanics does not even mention God
  2. according to quantum mechanics the properties of a physical system are not determined before a measurment, which is very different from saying that they are not knowable; this means that our intuitive description of the world as particles moving through space is wrong because the concept itself of particle is inadequate.

Let me quote Heisemberg, to explain better the implications of quantum mechanics.:

“The ontology of materialism rested upon the illusion that the kind of existence, the direct “actuality” of the world around us, can be extrapolated into the atomic range. This extrapolation is impossible, however. Atoms are not things.”

“The atoms or elementary particles themselves are not real; they form a world of potentialities or possibilities rather than one of things or facts.”

In other words, with quantum mechanics all we know about physical reality are abstract mathematical models, which take us ack to my initial argument

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