.... and why do some theists say it proves the universe was designed? 

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Ogden Nash would turn in his grave!

How did YOU know where I got the idea?! You're so smart!

I've never seen a purple cow,
I think I'll never see one,
But as regards a purple cow,
I'd rather see, than be one!
-- Ogden Nash --

(I'm working from swiss-cheese memory, the words may not be exactly correct)

During a few Philosophy of Science classes, the concept of causality was discused.

A few folks consider causality as only perceived correlation, a linkage between antecedent and conseguent in a time series. This can have a statistical/probability description.

There can be what could be called 'hard linkage' with known dependencies.

The Sciences, could be considered an attempt to turn perceived correlations into hard linked dependencies. Building theory and models as a result.

 

 

1) Everything that exists has a cause

2) the only way to break the inevitable series of infinite regress is to postulate a "supernatural" cause

The problems with this little bit of logic are quite profound. Firstly, if everything that exists has a cause, than either the Supernatural cause is uncaused and therefor 1) is not correct or it does have a cause which raises the bigger question of what "caused" this supernatural cause.

Also, postulating a supernatural being with identity and capabilities is a complex structure, the whole idea of postulating "god" as a solution to the problem of complexity fails miserably unless this god is very simple indeed. (like a Deist god, which just pushed the "start" button and is not active in human affairs).

Sounds like Aristotle's "Unmoved Mover" --

It isn't really a law. It's a necessary presupposition of understanding anything on the gross level. The subatomic level is understood in an entirely different way, though presumably there is some kind of cause and effect there as well. We use statistical ways of understanding the subatomic level due to some of the limitations on experimentation and observation there. 

Getting back to the gross level where Newtonian and Einsteinian laws prevail, theists imagine that anything that runs according to laws must have a lawmaker. The advantage is that all of the causes and effects go back to a First Cause, which is an act of God. 

However, that is a made up explanation. God must be proven first before using Him as a cause.

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