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Cogito ergo sum

Here in the Philosophy forum we will talk about all the "why" questions. We'll have conversations about the way in which philosophy and theology and religion interact with each other. Metaphysics, ontology, origins, truth? They're all fair game so jump right in and have some fun! But remember...play nice!

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An Infinite Past?

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  • An Infinite Past?

    If I have this right, the argument goes something like this:

    1. If there is an infinite past there is enough time for all possibilities to be made actual.

    2. It is possible for all matter or energy to not exist.

    3. Therefore matter or energy should not presently exist.

    The only problem I see is premise two - but then one would have to make the case that it is impossible for matter or energy not to exist. I don't see how one gets there. Thoughts?
    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

  • #2
    Originally posted by seer View Post
    If I have this right, the argument goes something like this:

    1. If there is an infinite past there is enough time for all possibilities to be made actual.

    2. It is possible for all matter or energy to not exist.

    3. Therefore matter or energy should not presently exist.

    The only problem I see is premise two - but then one would have to make the case that it is impossible for matter or energy not to exist. I don't see how one gets there. Thoughts?
    You have left out a bit of info here between steps 2 and 3. Explain how simply because all possibilities could be made actual includes the idea that it is possible for all matter or energy to not exist.
    Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

    Comment


    • #3
      I think some would also say that it is at least possible (so far as we know) for all matter and energy and space and time to go into and out of existence. If not absolutely 'out of existence', then at least in and out of some type of lowest energy quantum vacuum state.

      Would I say that? Or how would I respond to someone else saying this? No clue.
      βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
      ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

      אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Jedidiah View Post
        You have left out a bit of info here between steps 2 and 3. Explain how simply because all possibilities could be made actual includes the idea that it is possible for all matter or energy to not exist.
        Well if there was an infinite past then all possibilities will become actual. I think that that was the way to word it. So the question is - is it possible for all matter/energy not to exist? So why wouldn't that be possible?
        Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by seer View Post
          Well if there was an infinite past then all possibilities will become actual. I think that that was the way to word it. So the question is - is it possible for all matter/energy not to exist? So why wouldn't that be possible?
          Matter and energy which are components of space-time. Without matter and energy as we know it, there would also not be any space-time. If Genesis 1:1 is an unique origin of all matter and energy as we know it. Then they did not exist until Genesis 1:1. Matter-energy-space-time never existing until our current universe is no more difficult to conceive than an infinite series of matter-energy-space-time with no first origin.
          Last edited by 37818; 04-08-2014, 05:07 PM.
          . . . the Gospel of Christ, for it is [the] power of God to salvation to every [one] believing, . . . -- Romans 1:16.

          . . . that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: . . . -- 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4.

          Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: . . . -- 1 John 5:1.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by 37818 View Post
            Matter and energy which are components of space-time. Without matter and energy as we know it, there would also not be any space-time. If Genesis 1:1 is an unique origin of all matter and energy as we know it. Then they did not exist until Genesis 1:1. Never existing until is no more difficult to conceive than an infinite series of with no first origin.
            I tend to agree, but this is an argument against the possibility of an infinite past. Or, more to the point, of anything existing if there was an infinite past.
            Last edited by seer; 04-08-2014, 05:20 PM.
            Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by seer View Post
              I tend to agree, but this is an argument against the possibility against an infinite past. Or, more to the point, of anything existing if there was an infinite past.
              There has to be an always of some kind of uncaused self existence.
              . . . the Gospel of Christ, for it is [the] power of God to salvation to every [one] believing, . . . -- Romans 1:16.

              . . . that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: . . . -- 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4.

              Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: . . . -- 1 John 5:1.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by 37818 View Post
                There has to be an always of some kind of uncaused self existence.
                Yes, God.
                Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by seer View Post
                  Yes, God.
                  Do not call 37818 "God." He is a mere mortal, like us.
                  βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
                  ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

                  אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by seer View Post
                    Well if there was an infinite past then all possibilities will become actual. I think that that was the way to word it. So the question is - is it possible for all matter/energy not to exist? So why wouldn't that be possible?
                    First, All possibilities may be simply limited to what is possible according the laws of nature. Second, the non-existence of matter and energy, may not be one of the possibilities.

                    a similar situation exists in terms of the possibility of a multi-verse cosmos. The differences in the possibility of different types of universes would be limited by the laws of nature.
                    Last edited by shunyadragon; 04-08-2014, 10:35 PM.
                    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                    go with the flow the river knows . . .

                    Frank

                    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by 37818 View Post
                      There has to be an always of some kind of uncaused self existence.
                      Yes, this is true, but the uncaused self-existence may possibly be the cosmos it self governed by Natural Law.
                      Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                      Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                      But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                      go with the flow the river knows . . .

                      Frank

                      I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by seer View Post
                        If I have this right, the argument goes something like this:

                        1. If there is an infinite past there is enough time for all possibilities to be made actual.

                        2. It is possible for all matter or energy to not exist.

                        3. Therefore matter or energy should not presently exist.

                        The only problem I see is premise two - but then one would have to make the case that it is impossible for matter or energy not to exist. I don't see how one gets there. Thoughts?
                        One doesn't have to make that case. It is either possible or impossible but can't be used as a premise unless it is known to be true.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JimL View Post
                          One doesn't have to make that case. It is either possible or impossible but can't be used as a premise unless it is known to be true.
                          Agreed!!!
                          Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                          Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                          But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                          go with the flow the river knows . . .

                          Frank

                          I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by JimL View Post
                            One doesn't have to make that case. It is either possible or impossible but can't be used as a premise unless it is known to be true.
                            Then Jim you would have to argue that it is impossible for matter and energy to go out of existence.
                            Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by seer View Post
                              Then Jim you would have to argue that it is impossible for matter and energy to go out of existence.
                              I have no problem with matter and energy being eternal, but I do not propose 'impossibilities' when it comes to science. I could accept the first premise on the proviso the all things are possible within the constraints of the Laws of Nature.

                              Nonetheless the first assumption is not known to be true as JimL describes.
                              Last edited by shunyadragon; 04-09-2014, 01:20 PM.
                              Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                              Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                              But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                              go with the flow the river knows . . .

                              Frank

                              I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                              Comment

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