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The teleological argument Telos = purpose Ayetul Kubra – The Supreme Sign (Seventh Ray) A comprehensive proof for a teleological universe, that is best.

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Presentation on theme: "The teleological argument Telos = purpose Ayetul Kubra – The Supreme Sign (Seventh Ray) A comprehensive proof for a teleological universe, that is best."— Presentation transcript:

1 The teleological argument Telos = purpose Ayetul Kubra – The Supreme Sign (Seventh Ray) A comprehensive proof for a teleological universe, that is best explained by the purposive action of an intelligent being Not a purely analogical argument, and not a God of the Gaps arguments Amounts to an inference to best explanation – widely used in science. E.g. evolutionary theory.

2 Ayetul Kubra Bediuzzaman takes us on a journey of teffekkur through space and stars, planets, the atmosphere, air and wind, rivers and seas, and the realms of plant, animal and human life. Just one question that arises is, Why does matter move in such regular, uniform ways as to bring about these interconnected phenomena? Things seem to depend on one another. Life depends on water, which forms within inter-stellar clouds, which in turn depend on exploding stars to exist

3 Ayetul Kubra Life also depends on heat and light, which again necessitates stars. Stars in turn depend on elements, which depend on the occurrence of certain atomic and sub-atomic events Humans, plants and animals all exist within an ecosystem – a system of interdependence. Everything in the system relies, whether directly or indirectly, on everything else, in order to exist and survive

4 Ayetul Kubra At heart, humans (and all other things) need the objects around them to continually act in just the right ways in order for them to continue to exist. E.g. Earth could not exist if supernova explosions did not occur, nor if the other objects in the universe did not exert a gravitational pull on things

5 The need for an explanation Note: Its not just complex, macro-level phenomena that requires explanation, but all phenomena The most basic building blocks of the universe, e.g. quarks, photons, electrons, all exhibit certain characteristics E.g. 3 quarks come together to form protons and neutrons, and atoms can then be formed. Why do all these things continually act the way they do?

6 The need for an explanation Are they all conscious, intelligent beings that can act uniformly and co-operate with one another? Why isnt there just complete chaos?

7 Atheists Response There are laws of the universe, and these explain things E.g. the strong nuclear force explains the actions of quarks

8 Our initial reply But laws are merely descriptive, not prescriptive All the they tell us is that things move. Yet it was motion that we wanted to explain in the first place. A circular argument: Things move, because things move. We want to know why they move, and why they move the way they do, especially given the regularity/uniformity of the motion, and the inter- connectedness of all phenomena

9 A Fine-Tuned Universe Physics, at a more fundamental level, now confirms the inter-connectedness that Bediuzzaman observed All the laws (or constants) and initial conditions of the universe, as well as the relations between these, can be expressed mathematically. Physicists have found that for the universe to be able to evolve and sustain stars, planets and life, and to even be able to exist for any substantial length of time, the values for the initial conditions and fundamental constants must be fine tuned to an astoundingly high degree.

10 A Fine-Tuned Universe i.e. If matter did not move in just the right way, and if certain other initial conditions (like the quantities of certain things) were any different, we couldnt have the orderly universe we see today

11 Strong nuclear force constant Had the strong nuclear force constant been any different, we could not have had certain elements that are essential to things like stars, water and hence life. if larger: no hydrogen would form if smaller: no elements heavier than hydrogen would form Hugh Ross (1998)

12 Roughness parameter Relates to how smoothly matter was distributed in the early universe Had matter been distributed perfectly smoothly, galaxies, and hence life, could never have formed. But if matter had been distributed slightly more roughly, the universe would have either collapsed back in on itself early on or developed into a vast sea of black holes (Corey 2001, p.73).

13 Roughness parameter This roughness parameter might have taken on any one of an infinite range of values. Yet it took on the one and only value that was required to enable a life-sustaining universe: 10 the power of negative 5 (10 -5 )!

14 Ratios between values Not only must the values be fine-tuned, the ratios between the values must be fine-tuned Examples: ratio of electromagnetic force constant to gravitational force constant ratio of electron to proton mass ratio of number of protons to number of electrons

15 Implications of fine-tuning The universe would not exhibit the phenomena it does, and would not have any composite objects, including things like molecules of water, stars and planets, if not for the fine-tuning The universe would not even exist today if not for the fine-tuning

16 Implications of fine-tuning Next session: What explains the fine-tuning, and especially the astounding inter-dependency between everything in the universe? What sort of explanation is most plausible? (An IBE argument) Relation to Ayetul Kubra: We are asking, at a fundamental level, the same questions that Bediuzzaman implicitly posed: What explains the existence of the things, and the events, around us that serve our needs? What explains the fact that all these things also meet the needs of each other?

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