Sunday, November 15, 2009

Affirming the Consequence

I class I noted that Buber’s jump from I-Thou relationships between people to the claim that there is an eternal Thou was affirming the consequence. Affirming the consequence occurs when you say P then Q, Q, therefore P. Buber states that we have I-Thou relationships because there is an eternal Thou and “each individuated Thou is a vision through to it” (329). However, the claim (or fact) that we have I-Thou relationships does not necessitate that these relationships mimic an eternal Thou. This is a logical fallacy. This made me realize that as strange as it seems to me, there is no logical reason to say that because we exist, God (or anything for that matter) created us. The syllogism is as follows:

If God created us, then we exist.

We exist.

Therefore: God created us.

This is affirming the consequence. It would make just as much sense to say “if God didn’t created us, then we exist; we exist therefore God didn’t create us.” It is strange to me, but logically we cannot deduce any causation for our existence because it will always be affirming the consequence. What is very strange to me, logically causation for our existence is not required. It makes perfect sense to simply say: we exist; therefore we exist, and that our existence does not require a cause.

Through science it may be possible to discover the causation of our existence. However, personally I cannot imagine a science providing a satisfactory answer to such a question. The big bang theory coupled with evolution and etc works but I feel like there is more behind it. But like I said, there is no logical reason for me to think that. Religion, or more specifically God, makes sense. However, it is not required logically for existence. Because of this, God must be accepted on faith alone. If we knew there was a God then there would be no point in having faith.

It is funny to me that because we can debate about whether or not God exists, the world would be the same with or without God. One so religiously inclined might say this isn’t true because we can’t perceive of a world without a God. However, an atheist could just as easily reply that this is exactly how a world would look without one. This, of course, works in the reverse as well. So in the end, as always, the question goes unanswered.

1 comment:

  1. I liked your post a lot. I think it is a common fallacy to base a belief in God on our existences alone; for atheists to base a belief in the nonexistence of God on human existence alone. They tell us only that we exist.

    I personally believe that we should only base our lives on what we can concretely know. This is the only way for us to know unequivocally that we are not living a lie. Perhaps there is no way to be completely sure of anything, but basing our life on what is logically sound seems a good place to start.


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