After looking around and reading a few reasons people give for being atheist, I've been quite surprised to find that nobody seems to share the reason that first made me an atheist. I've always thought it funny that people turn to religion to answer questions like where we came from, where the world came from, and what are purpose of life is. Most religions attribute such things to the presence of a creator of some sort, a supreme being that made everything. However, this idea has a serious flaw... what created the creator? What created existence in the first place? Why does anything exist? These are questions I've never been able to answer, and I doubt anyone ever will be able to.. not even religion. I was just wondering if anyone else had ever wondered about these things, and what they thought.

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2 low quality scans from Victor Stenger's book 'God: The Failed Hypothesis' on the subject.


Since he wasn't able to prove spontaneous generation, or gradual spontaneous generation, he chose to just redefine "nothing".

Simply put, nothing is a "no-thing". It does not have existence, therefore it does not have a measurement not even a measurement of zero. You cannot assign a stable or unstable description to it, because it does not exist. Nothing cannot be something.
If 'nothing' does not exist, then there must always have been something. Even the tiniest bit of something becomes more complex. One explanation is that the universe always existed. Even though ours had a beginning, it can't be said there was a state of nothingness before it.

But as you don't believe 'nothing' can exist, you can't believe a god made something where once there was nothing. The universe would have always existed, and if that's the case, why is a god required?

You might say a god was eternal and everywhere (leaving no room for nothing), and the universe is a part of this god. But if this god is everything possible, how did it start the universe off? The universe, even if it's part of a god, still has to be eternal, otherwise there would have been a point where this god was not everything.
I agree that if something currently exists, then something has to have existed eternally.

Belief has nothing to do with my definition of "nothing". A "no-thing" does not have power, it cannot do or create anything, it does not exist. If there currently exists something, then there always has to have been something. The Universe, God, an FSM, something that has existence is required to be eternal in order for it to have causal power to kick off the chain of effects.

"Something" currently exists.
FSM has existed eternally.(No requirement for a cause)
FSM is the causal agent for the something either directly or through a chain of contingent events.

"Something" currently exists.
The Universe has always existed. (No requirement for a cause)
The Universe is the causal agent for the "something" either directly or through a chain of contingent events.

Do you find either of these statements irrational or absurd? Yes, you can disagree with them, but are they logically sound statements? The explanation of how the FSM or the Universe are the causal agents are not the debate points at this time, just the question of logic. If something fails the logic test or the ability to have a rational discussion, then what is the point in the discussion?

If you are saying that the Universe is eternal and self-existent, then I agree that is a logical and rational statement. However, that goes against the BBT which indicates there was a beginning and is eventually heading to an end.

On the other hand, requiring a cause for a cause is not logical and neither is "nothing" to have the power to be the cause for "something".

I wouldn't make the last statement you suggest.
"If you are saying that the Universe is eternal and self-existent, then I agree that is a logical and rational statement. However, that goes against the BBT which indicates there was a beginning and is eventually heading to an end."

The BBT only goes back to Planck time, as before then we cannot determine the state of things, as we do not have a solid theory of quantum gravity. Before Planck time, matter was compressed enough so that gravitational effects on a quantum scale become significant. There are several speculative hypothesis on what might have occurred, including string theory, superstrings, M-theory, and more.

While our particular universe may have had a beginning (this is not certain, although the likelihood of the cyclical universe hypothesis being accurate is increasingly doubtful), it is quite possible that it spawned from something else, such as another universe (as in the hypothesis that black holes are forming universes), or the 'quantum foam' described on some of the hypotheses on higher dimensional realities. In fact, one of the multi-dimensional theories may be able to be tested when the LHC comes online.

So, while our particular universe may not be eternal and self-existent, it may be part of something that is.
When people talk about the big bang, they're talking about what happened in the seconds after we know there was definitely something. Saying it had a beginning isn't the same as saying it came from nothing. To use an old illustration, there's nothing North of the North Pole, yet the North Pole still exists. If time doesn't exist outside this universe, then there has always been something - our universe. There is no 'before' before time.

The multiverse idea looks logical to me too.

However, a being outside the universe who is everywhere and everything makes no sense to me, for reasons I've outlined. I'd probably need to better understand your definition of the god you believe in. The first part I assume you'd have to believe - the god is everywhere at once. Otherwise 'nothing' exists in the places where the god isn't.

Is it the god being everything that you don't agree with, because that would mean it had to transform a piece of itself into the universe - meaning at one point before our universe was created the god wasn't maximally great. It's probably best you clarify the properties of this god so I don't make an error in describing your views of it.
It really is funny how so few people can actually see the logic in that. Its true that its possible that a creator may have created the universe (maybe, we really don't know), and its true that we don't know much about the creation of the universe. However, putting those two together doesn't make the former true.
It is just as likely that the universe had a creator than a multi verse existing which requires the presence of a complicated, unproved super universe that has the capacity to randomly spew out an infinite number of universes with different laws of physics. How does this hypothetical super universe know how to do this? Why would it even want to do this? Ultimately, why should there be any universe at all? Except using Occam's razor we can conclude that God does exist or is at least more likely to exist than a multi-verse because of the evidence that the Universe is not infinite
But there are so many unanswered questions and questions that come up with the multi-verse a creator is simpler
How does this hypothetical super universe know how to do this? Why would it even want to do this? Ultimately, why should there be any universe at all?
It's simpler because it avoids explaining anything.
Argumentum Ad Ignorantium.


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