Thomas's second way

Proof:

The second way is from the nature of the efficient cause. In the world of sense we find there is an order of efficient causes. There is no case known (neither is it, indeed, possible) in which a thing is found to be the efficient cause of itself; for so it would be prior to itself, which is impossible. Now in efficient causes it is not possible to go on to infinity, because in all efficient causes following in order, the first is the cause of the intermediate cause, and the intermediate is the cause of the ultimate cause, whether the intermediate cause be several, or only one. Now to take away the cause is to take away the effect. Therefore, if there be no first cause among efficient causes, there will be no ultimate, nor any intermediate cause. But if in efficient causes it is possible to go on to infinity, there will be no first efficient cause, neither will there be an ultimate effect, nor any intermediate efficient causes; all of which is plainly false. Therefore it is necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God.

Objection:

There exist the first cause in nature so called consciousness. Consciousness by definition is the ability to experience and affect mental states. We are in fact very aware of consciousness in our beings.

That is something neither you nor anyone else has proven. Besides that is not the argument. You are evading the argument, you are waving a red herring.

Linus2nd

He insist that there is not an efficient cause in nature to continue with his proof of existence of first cause and I saying oppositely that there exist the first cause in nature so called consciousness.

Consciousness by definition is an irreducible thing which grants the ability to experience and affect mental states.

We are in fact very aware of consciousness in our beings. We in fact are responsible for our action because we make conscious decision. Do you believe in consciousness? If yes what is your definition?

‘Consciousness’ doesn’t exist apart from the being that has it; you can’t point to the existence of consciousness apart from beings that have it. Therefore, the being is consciousness’ efficient cause. The efficient cause of each being is the being that gave it life (e.g., your father or mother).

Therefore, consciousness is not a first cause. QED.

Wrong. We are utility of consciousness unless we become self-aware.

No change is possible without consciousness.

Proof: Consider a system in a given state, S. This state causes another state S’. These states cannot coexist hence S must vanishes before S’ takes place. This situation is paradoxical S must exist and must exist not for S’ to exist. This paradox can only be resolved if we assume that the awareness of S exist in consciousness and that causes S’.

You are still evading his argument. You are substituting your argument for " consciousness " as the cause of the universe and all that happens in it. And you have never been able to prove that, though you have been pounding away for two years. On this thread we are discussing Thomas’ argument. If there is something wrong with it, please address that.

Consciousness by definition is an irreducible thing which grants the ability to experience and affect mental states.

We are in fact very aware of consciousness in our beings. We in fact are responsible for our action because we make conscious decision. Do you believe in consciousness? If yes what is your definition?

Again, " consciousness " is not the topic of this thread. That issue has been the topic of many of your threads. It is not the topic of this one.

Pax Christi
Linus2nd

What does this mean? When you say “utility of consciousness”, what does that term mean?

Are you saying that we, as humans, are the maidservants of our individual consciousnesses? Or, that there is this singleton being – ‘consciousness’ – that we all serve by virtue of participating in it?

No change is possible without consciousness.

Not so. For the sake of this argument, I’m assuming you’re talking about ‘change’ in the Aristotelian sense. In that context, all material things undergo change. The moon rotates, and thus undergoes change. The moon has no consciousness.

Proof: Consider a system in a given state, S. This state causes another state S’. These states cannot coexist hence S must vanishes before S’ takes place. This situation is paradoxical S must exist and must exist not for S’ to exist. This paradox can only be resolved if we assume that the awareness of S exist in consciousness and that causes S’.

You keep using this ‘example’, but it’s seriously flawed. Yes, S must have existed in order to give rise to S’, but it does not follow that S must concurrently exist with S’. Read up on your Aristotelian Physics – he discusses the notion of the ‘instant’, in which change cannot occur (since, by definition, it’s an instant), but nevertheless, there are ‘before’ and ‘after’ states that differ from the instant, and therefore, we can assert that ‘change’ has occurred.

Act and potency divide being and every category of being.( Thomas Aquinas ). In other words there exist beings whose essence is composed of something which has a potential to exist and beings which are pure act. If your " consciousness " is a part of any essence with a potential to exist, then it is not the first cause you imagine. Because a first cause must be pure act.

Consciousness by definition is an irreducible thing which grants the ability to xperience and affect mental states.

I don’t know where you get this idea. " Consciousness " is not a thing, it is mere self awareness. I am self aware and conscious of the fact, but I am not " consciousness. " Where are getting this idea, it seems to have a lock on you consciousness?

We are in fact very aware of consciousness in our beings. We in fact are responsible for our action because we make conscious decision. Do you believe in consciousness? If yes what is your definition?

So what, what does that have to do with the O.P.? Nothing.

Linus2nd

Are you a conscious being? How bout your God? You are making decision freely based on your consciousness. This means that your decision is only depends on very you and not God, otherwise you are not responsible for your decision. This means that your decision is based on uncaused first cause which is consciousness. The same rule applies to your God hence the essence of God is consciousness as us. This is however problematic since it means that God is one of us since we both share the same essence which is consciousness. Hence God cannot be the first cause of everything.

Consciousness is very related since it is the first cause whether when it applies to us or God.

Have ever driven your car for a while without noticing what you are doing? Could you exactly remember the details of what you have done during this period? We don’t need to be aware of things we do when we master them which means that we are utility of consciousness and we can do things without being aware. You can however drive your car with full attention which means that you are not a utility anymore hence a self-aware being.

Conscious being is very definition of you.

Moon only is not self-aware but conscious. Read the first comment about being utility of consciousness.

It is not flawed. In fact it explain you very well. Can you please explain why my argument is flawed? And there is not such a thing like instant which change cannot occur within. The notion of time as continuous thing is wrong since time is a cognitive phenomena. Moreover in his view time does not exists without change hence he is contradicting himself.

Do you ever read what I post carefully? ’ Consciousness ’ is not a thing it is a property of an intelligent being. Therefore ’ Consciousness ’ can’t be the cause of anything.

It is I who am conscious, it is God who is conscious. But I am conscious because of my intellect which is a property of my soul. But since we haven’t discussed ’ soul ’ here, I will just say that it is I who make decisions and I make them freely. That does not eliminate God as the First Efficient Cause. Further, it is in accord with his will that I be free.

And I did not cause myself, nor did my parents, all they did was pass on the material of which I am made. They did not make that material, they were not the efficient cause of that material. If anything, it was the forces of their combined human natures working deep within their bodies converting food stuffs into the stuff of which my embryo was made. And who made their nature? Ultimately, God was the efficient cause of their natures. And ultimately, since my embryo was a new nature, God is the ultimate cause of my nature. He, not my parents, was the ultimate cause of my nature, which can make free decisions. And that does no prejudice God’s effecient causality.

But more than this, my nature has existence. And neither my parents, nor myself is the cause of that act of existence. Only God can cause the actual existence of anything. So he is the immediate efficient cause of my existence. Likewise God is the immediate efficient cause of the existence of all that exists or that ever did exist. So God is the ultimate First Cause on the level of the material that went into my body, of the form which is my nature, and of the act of existence which made my nature have actual existence.

This means that your decision is based on uncaused first cause which is consciousness.

No. God willed that I make free decisions. He did however gave me a body and a form and caused them to exist. And again, he is not ’ consciousness, ’ he is the Eternal Intellect which was the First Cause of it all. And that Intellect is conscious, fully self aware of who he is.

The same rule applies to your God hence the essence of God is consciousness as us.

Neither we nor God is ’ consciousness. ’ We both are self aware, we are both conscious.

This is however problematic since it means that God is one of us since we both share the same essence which is consciousness.

No. God’s consciousness exists eternally and perfectly. Our consciousness is time bound, contingent, limited, and caused by God.

Hence God cannot be the first cause of everything.

As I have shown, he is the efficient first cause of everything.

Consciousness is very related since it is the first cause whether when it applies to us or God.

As I have shown, this is not true.

Linus

It seems that you are talking about subconscious processes. The presence of a subconscious process does not imply that the actor doesn’t have consciousness; moreover, it does not mean that the actor isn’t self-aware. Rather, it simply means that the actor isn’t in the act of consciously thinking about a particular action.

which means that we are utility of consciousness

This still doesn’t make any sense. I’m going to assume that it’s a language difficulty. :shrug:

Moon only is not self-aware but conscious.

Umm… the moon – a rock – is conscious and self-aware? :confused:

Yes, I read them carefully hence you are wrong. It seems that that is you who don’t read my post carefully. You are inside trap of epiphenomalism if you assume that consciousness is a property. Consciousness by definition is very you since you experience and do everything with. Quite contrary intelligence is a utility of consciousness and not vice versa since we experience intelligence.

You are consciousness if you are very aware of yourself, what you experience and what you do, otherwise you are utility of consciousness. We cannot owe consciousness as a property since it is not a property.

Your parents made you. That is brutal fact. Anyway, I think this discussion is related to Thomas’s fifth way. I was very clear there, so we can discuss things there further if you wish.

Seriously? You nature can handle your existence, what is the purpose of all these biological processes is taken place in your body then? I think you need to think through. You are surrounded with too much abstract that even believe the reality presented in front of your eyes.

Seriously? Anything has to be first conscious then intellect otherwise it could not use intellect property. What does it mean to be intellect without ability to experience?

As I discussed you are wrong.

Intelligence or consciousness, which one is primary in your opinion?

No process is possible in absence of consciousness. Our action is divided by two, those performed by presence of self-awareness (consciousness action in your language) and those which self-awareness is not present (subconscious action in your language).

It is not.

Hence, based on what we discussed moon and rock can perform subconscious decision. They are not only self-aware.

Well, we seem to be on entirely different wave lengths. There certainly seems to be an intellectual " boundary " between us.

Linus2nd

I don’t think so.

Well I’m not reaching you and what I hear from you makes no sense whatsoever. Sounds like a barrier to me.

Linus2nd

We are not the first cause of ourselves or we would be prior to ourselves which is impossible.

An excellent way to express it. And by extension, nothing can be its own cause. Therefore God, the First Cause has to exist.

Linus2nd

You know very well that you are the person who decide. Unless you declare otherwise! Based on what cause? No cause. It is very you that make the decision and this shows that causality is false since it cannot explain all aspect of reality. Just show me how you could be free if causality is true. Hence any proof of God based on causality is false.

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