Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The "God Particle" the End of God?


Photo by: alpinethread

The scientific community is atwitter with rumors of the empirical discovery of the Higgs Boson via recent results from Switzerland’s Large Hadron Collider.  Often, such discoveries are hailed as another nail in the coffin of theism; further proof the universe doesn’t need God to exist.  Physicists have gone so far as to nickname the Higgs Boson the “God Particle” for its purported final link between the naturalistic origin of the universe and our universe today.  However, this type of thinking is so illogical it should be insulting to the droves of PhD’s who proselytize it while also calling into question their judgment and reasoning ability.

The failed logic goes something like this: the more we know about the way the universe works, the less need there is for mythological gods to explain the unknowns.  In essence, they believe the only reason God exists is as a filler to prevent cognitive dissonance - a way for people to make sense of the incomprehensible.  Perhaps they have spent too much time learning of Greek mythology whereby the Greeks invented gods to explain the forces in the universe without needing to understand the underlying physics behind the phenomena.  While Greek mythology may be responsible for shaping the physicists perspective of God and religion, it still doesn’t excuse their naiveté.

Let’s put this into better context via analogy.  Reverse engineering is a technique employed to understand how a competing technology works so it can be leveraged for someone else’s benefit.  This why we never want our military technology to fall into the hands of an enemy (such as a stealth drone being downed and confiscated by Iran) – we don’t want enemies to use our technology against us.  Through disassembly and testing it is possible to recreate the engineering and knowledge that led to the technology.  For example, Iran may be able to learn how our stealth aircraft technology works by reverse engineering the downed drone and consequently develop its own stealth drones, or build defense technologies to ward off our drones.

In effect, Iranian scientists may go from knowing very little about U.S. stealth technology (or drone technology) to knowing almost everything about it.  At the completion of their reverse engineering, the Iranian scientists will not proclaim they have proven the stealth drones were spontaneously self-created through random, naturalistic processes.  Yet, doing so is equivalent to scientists’ claims that learning more about particle physics proves the universe came into existence through random, naturalistic means.  Instead, the Iranians will reaffirm their initial assumption that the drones are byproduct of intelligent design.

No one reverse engineers something of purely random origins because it would be, by definition, meaningless.   The expectation for reverse engineering is that the subject matter was designed and constructed by rationale beings using sound engineering principles conforming to consistent physical laws.  Therefore, the very act of “reverse engineering” nature, so to speak, belies the expectation that nature has a logical Creator.  If there were no Creator then the universe must be the consequence of purely random events with no basis for consistent fundamental physical laws; thus, reverse engineering would be futile. 

Before the CERN physicists can design an experiment they must first assume a universe created by an intelligent, logical being.  In fact, trusting their own cognition assumes they are the consequence of a consistent, logical Creator; the alternative is “intelligence” derived from nothing more than random chemical reactions over billions of years.  In other words, the ability to design, conduct, and interpret experiments pre-assumes the universe and human cognitive ability are logical and consistent.  Concluding the empirical affirmation of the standard theory of physics is the death knell of religion first borrows the necessary logic and consistency from the Judeo-Christian religion to make operational science possible before concluding the Judeo-Christian religion is disproved by the results.  Perhaps Iran will use the same reasoning and pile carbon fiber, titanium, and aluminum at the end of a runway in hopes that a stealth drone will spontaneously manufacture itself and take to the skies – after all, stealth drones are clearly the consequence of time and chance; not some fable about intelligent designers creating them in a factory in America, right? 

2 comments:

  1. Perhaps there was no creator because there was no beginning or end. It always was. Eternal.

    I don't see how a drone could be compared to the universe. One is man-made; the other is not.

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  2. Dear unknown,

    Do you know, as provable fact, the universe has no beginning or end, or do you simply accept that as your a priori assumption?

    Regarding the drone, you completely miss the point of an analogy and dismiss the greater part of my point: that you cannot understand anything that is an outcome of randomness. Random meaninglessness is a necessary assumption of atheism, but it makes scientific discovery impossible. Whether the subject matter is "natural" or "man-made" is irrelevant, logic and reason is an impossible outcome of atheism.

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