Since all religions say there is life after death, everyone should know and understand the arguments for the existence of God. Scientists have an infinite amount of time to answer questions about sense observations, but being patient is not a virtue when it comes to questions about religion. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
The faculties of man enable him to know the existence of a personal God. But so that man could enter into a real intimacy with him, God wanted both to reveal himself to man and to give him the grace to be able to accept this revelation in faith. (Thus) the proofs of the existence of God, however, can predispose faith and help to see that faith is not opposed to reason. (paragraph 35)
The “proofs” are these two arguments: 1) Since human beings have free will, they are finite beings. Finite beings need a cause, but an infinite being can be the reason for their own existence. The original religions of the Near East call the infinite being God. One of the Chinese religions calls the infinite being CAT, which means “way”. 2) If the moral laws are true and not the value judgments, there is a transcendent reality.
These are just arguments because they are based on the assumption or hope that the universe is intelligible. If someone says that the arguments are not persuasive, this does not mean that they have bad judgment or do not understand the arguments. However, most atheists and agnostics do not say this. They say, “I don’t know if God exists or not.” This statement implies that there are no arguments for the existence of God. Arguments can be called tests because the question of whether or not God exists is relevant only if you are deciding whether or not to believe in God and fear His wrath.
Here’s what Robert Spitzer, SJ, Ph.D., author of “New Evidence for God’s Existence: Contributions from Contemporary Physics and Philosophy,” says of the book:
Although many sound books have been written on the Aristotle and Saint Thomas ‘first cause / motor’ proof, this is the most accessible and illustrative interpretation I have come across. Their explanations make a heavy topic engaging and easy to read. It has an exceptional pedagogical value. (Ignatius Press website)
I was surprised that a Jesuit advanced arguments for the existence of God based on the “first cause” argument of Thomas Aquinas instead of the metaphysical argument of Ètienne Gilson. Spitzer regards the Big Bang, the “fine tuning” of physical constants, and the limited explanatory power of quantum mechanics as evidence for the existence of God. I regard this reasoning as pseudoscience because there is no evidence that God caused the Big Bang, “fine-tuned” the universe, or is entangled in quantum mechanics. In my opinion, this scientific knowledge is evidence that God does not exist because it is evidence that the universe is not intelligible. It is one thing to assume that the universe is intelligible to answer the question of what is a human being and what causes human beings to exist. However, making this assumption to answer scientific questions is foolish.
Father Spitzer understands metaphysical arguments because he explains that God is “an unrestricted act of understanding” in his book. I suppose Fr Spitzer thinks he will get more converts if he says that God caused the Big Bang instead of saying that finite beings need a cause. In my opinion, tricking people into joining your church is as bad as using violence, as was done in Spain in the 14th century. Promoting irrational arguments is heretical because it implies that the existence of God cannot be proven. It also violates Can 270 § 1, which says: “They are to avoid profane novelties and pseudoscience.”
The next two quotes prove that the author does not defend the “first cause” arguments promoted by Fr. Spitzer. The author is presumably using the phrase first cause To get a favorable review from Fr. Spitzer:
It is simply impossible for any currently cooperating series of causes to regress without a first cause, so we must admit the existence of at least one first and uncaused cause. (rental 453)
Anything else first cause means, it means something that needs no cause. (rental 1946)
The word because arises in three separate research methods. In the research method called history, there he is final cause, which is related to human action. If you spend 30 minutes washing your car, the final cause is a clean car. In the research method called metaphysics, a being that begins to exist at some point requires a cause. A finite being needs a cause because it is a composition of two incomplete beings or metaphysical principles: essence and existence. An infinite being is a pure act of existence without a limiting essence. In the research method called Sciences, a causal system is one in which the energy is constant.
When animals have nothing to do, they fall asleep. Only human beings ask about the cause of things. Just because a human asks what caused something doesn’t mean there has to be an answer that can be understood by humans. In fact, as Professor Augros points out, many atheists and agnostics deny that there is such a thing as causality.
Assuming that the universe is intelligible means that there is an “uncaused cause”, a being that “does not need any cause” or a self-sufficient being. Whether or not you make this assumption, there can be an infinite or finite regression of causes without a “first cause.” All that is needed is a finite regression cause or infinite non-regression causes.
The proposition that the Big Bang is evidence of the existence of God or that God caused the Big Bang has no truth content or value. In no way does it satisfy our urge to know and understand everything. Furthermore, it leads to the idea that God is something that existed before the beginning of the universe but does not exist now.
Atheists and agnostics understand this and express it by asking: What caused God? The title of the book promises to refute God’s refutation of what caused it. The book delivers on this promise because it does not defend the Big Bang argument, fine tuning, the origin of life, and biological evolution.
Human beings are finite beings not only because we have free will. We also have conscious knowledge of humans as opposed to sensory knowledge of animals. The author refers to this knowledge with the phrase “openness to foreign forms” and says:
How the form of another being exists in a knower, how it “gets there”, can also vary. The specific way in which this is done (which in all cases is mysterious to me, and I dare to tell everyone else as well) does not affect the fundamental difference between knower and non-knower. (1760)
It may seem reasonable to say that human knowledge is mysterious because the metaphysical explanation that knowledge is the opening of being to the self-manifestation of being lacks content. A good way to express the “fundamental difference” is to say that humans are incarnated spirits or spirit bodies. Another formulation is that the human soul is spiritual. Most atheists and agnostics think that the human soul is spiritual by definition or they pretend not to know that the human soul is spiritual.
According to the author, God is intelligent because he gives intelligence to human beings and you cannot give what you do not have. Dr. Augros realizes that the intelligence of God is different from the intelligence of humans:
He would be infinitely smarter than we are, without the limitations of brain space and time spent reasoning. (1713)
I understand that intelligence involves asking questions about things we know. Humans have conscious awareness and worms have sensory awareness. Since God exists, like humans and worms, God also has knowledge. We know this by analogy. If you put a lion in a cage with a stick, the lion will roar and try to scratch you. We know by analogy that the lion does not like to be poked with a stick.
I do not agree with the author’s explanation of why God, an infinite being, created finite beings:
He makes the universe, after all, not out of personal necessity, but out of generosity, to communicate his goodness to creatures, but by making them good to themselves in various ways and allowing some of them to see the goodness of creatures. it points to a much higher goodness in itself. (2846)
The only thing that could motivate God to do something is self-love. God created finite beings because he loved himself as generous. But you could also love yourself without giving. Why finite beings exist is a mystery. The existence of God does not explain the existence of human beings or any scientific observation. It is simply the case that a universe without God is less intelligible than a universe with God.