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Archive for January, 2011

This blog is meant to give an Atheistic view to religious people and make them understand why atheists think the way they do. I have tried to answer most questions that theists ask. Language has been kept simple without involving much scientific jargon to make it convenient for everyone to follow. Let’s assume it as a conversation between a religious person S and Me.

Me: Hi, so let’s have a discussion about religions.
S: Okay.
Me: So you believe in God, what makes you believe there is something like god whom no one has ever seen.

S: Have you seen your brain ? Electrons? or energy ? or your 10th grandfather ? You have not seen these, so does that means they don’t exist.

Me: Whether I have brain or not can be proven by MRI scan, light is a form of energy, and if there were cameras few 100 years ago then I would have seen my 10th grandfathers face. Electrons were found experimentally and that’s why we believe in their existence. Not everything necessarily has to be seen by Human senses but all things/entities that should be believed have to have some proof of existence. We cannot see Cosmic rays but they were found experimentally. There are things that can be proved by observations, mathematics or experiments. At present time it cannot be proven that God doesn’t exists because Science hasn’t proved any Theory of Everything but neither anyone can prove that God exists. But science has made enough progress to discard religions if not spirituality.  What is surprising is that currently more people in this world believe in God whom no one has seen but when an Atheist says that they don’t believe in God then they despise them. I or have not seen aliens and UFO’s so one cannot prove or completely refute whether they exist.

S: Come on think about it, if there is matter and life then it’s obvious that someone has made it and that entity is called god. Everything needs to have a creator, lets say you go to a jungle and you see a Hut, what will you interpret ?
Me: That at some time Humans came there and made the hut.
S: So you agree that there has to be creator for everything.
Me: No, hut is an artifact and any artifact needs to have a creator(a Human, not a bull and not a lion), other objects in Universe don’t. Lets imagine a mountain in back side of your imaginary hut, who made that ? Religion may make you interpret that all these were created by God but a 9th grade geography student can tell you that mountain formation is due to movement of tectonic plates and it is when these plates collide with each other, they start to overlap each other and thus mountains are formed. This is why Himalayas are still rising though at a very slow rate. If you take case of earth and Sun, their creation can be explained by laws of formation of planetary objects and stars. The way Sun got formed is same as how every other star in whole Universe got created. In ancient times people used to think that lightning is a result for god’s anger but that myth has been debunked as Science has answered all such questions.
Trees are also considered as life forms, does every tree has to have parents/creator or seeds are enough which contain some structure which when combined with water and minerals present in soil can turn into a tree.
S: And where did all this matter came from ?
Me: At the time of Big Bang there were no sub atomic particles like electrons or protons, there was only energy in form of radiations. When the temperature of Universe cooled down this energy converted into matter. Matter came from Energy as per Einstein’s equations. It has been proven in labs that matter can be created from nothing but energy. Let’s take an example: when a nuclear bomb explodes it releases so much energy over such a wide area that it can wipe out everything, that energy comes from matter. Now go back in time and put all that energy into very very small spot, that condensed form of energy is called matter. As per latest theory energy combines in different forms called strings and their vibration frequency determines which kind of particle they form.
Steven Weinberg, famous Astrophysicist and Noble prize winner has written a very famous book “The First Three Minutes” which describes state of the Universe in its first three minutes and electrons and other sub-atomic particles were created after the Big Bang they didnt exist since infinity.
S: Very smart, and where did energy came from
Me: Scientifically total energy of Universe is 0 . There are 2 kinds of energies positive and negative and there is hidden energy in universe called Dark energy about which research is going on. Until we know about those things precisely we can’t give complete answers.
S: And what about life, where did it came from
Me: Life evolved from inorganic materials. In Biology there is a theory on Origin of Life called Abiogenesis.
S: You are wrong, all this was done by God who always existed and he is the one who created life forms and we should pray him for that. Life cannot start just by accident. There has to be an origin of everything.
Me: So its hard to believe  that life forms can start by accident, but if simplest life forms like amoeba and bacteria can’t start on their own then how can there be super powerful, super intelligent entity called god be there on its own.
S: Shut up, we can’t question origin and authority of God
Me: I am not abusing/insulting god, I am just being curious about origins of god too. For you your parents are your creator, you can ask them where did they come from, that’s not insulting them it’s just being curious. Just like your parents need to have origin (from grandparents) and so on, god must also have some origin.
S: You are devil (shaitan), God will punish you for this…………
Me: It depends on what is definition of Good and Evil. Every person thinks he/she is perfect be it Hindu/Sikh/Muslim/Christian/Jain etc and tries to find faults in others. It has become human tendency to assume whatever they do is right and what others do is wrong. For some Hindus are shirks, for some Muslims are terrorists and barbarians, for some Christians are all wrong doers and for all theists , Atheists are devil because they oppose their image of God.
Me: Okay next analogy: let’s say I create an artificially intelligent robot and put it in a building with only walls and no windows, seal
the doors. Now robot is activated inside the building and there is no human in it, he thinks………well I am here so there must be some creator who created me and my universe(i.e the building on our case), so should he be praying to me, for him I am creator though he hasn’t seen me…………….
S: You are not god, he should pray to the real god.
Me: But how would he know that his creator is not the super duper powerful entity called god but some human who himself has been created by someone else. Same ways why it is not possible that entity called god was not created from some other power/source/intelligent specie.
S: It is obvious that god has to be the most powerful and there can’t be anything more powerful than him and that’s why we should pray to him.
Me: Claim that God has to be most powerful is just for monotheists to boost their ego. More than 1 god not only contradicts their way of thinking as everything coming from 1 source but it puts a limit to how much pride they can have in their religion.  Let’s hypothesize another experiment. Let’s say with knowledge of Computer Graphics and Artificial Intelligence we create a game which has many characters in it . These characters work independently depending on how some variables work inside the computer. In reality these are voltage fluctuations but let’s assume it like voltage fluctuations in our neural systems inside the brain and body. So now we have a 2 dimensional virtual world with intelligent living forms created by me, should they be praying to me. I created them for fun, interest, but would it make sense if I made them for “praying me”.
S: Over xyz million people follow our religion, do you think all of them are wrong ?
Me: Normal people believe in religions because they hope that following certain laws they can book themselves a slot in heaven, that they are being taken care of by most powerful entity in this Universe and religion gives them something that mankind has always run for – virtual immortality. Most common people follow one or other religions due to its sociological values but problem occurs when religions contradict with Science to show their supremacy. If so many people believe in a religion then there must be some sociological points in that religion, Religions were introduced to bring an order into human culture and define social structure as to how we should live. Concepts of Hell and Heaven were introduced to make people do things that are considered right by society but over time many religions have twisted them to dictate how people must live .Science should not try to dictate how to live and religions cant explain structure of Universe
S: So you think there is no god who keeps watching us all the time?
Me: We are trained from childhood by family and society to feel superior and special and therefore people readily believe being watched and being taken care of by most powerful entity – the God. At the time when most religions were crafted human viewpoint was that there exists earth where humans live and space where God lives, thats why even after millions of spherical pictures of earth humans look at sky and pray to god. Current model of Earth in Universe is analogous to a sand grain on earth and saying that most powerful entity called God is watching earth is analogous to saying head of UN (or US president) should be watching 1 sand grain all the time. Earth is not the center of our Solar system, Sun is just another star out of 10^22 stars, our solar systems lies in 1 corner of our galaxy, our galaxy is just another galaxy out of 10^11 galaxies and possibly our Universe may be just one of Universe out of many possible theoretical parallel Universes. Thus our understanding and the way we perceive Universe needs to be changed too.
S: But our religions can answer so many things on Science, what god wanted us to know he told us and rest he didnt told us. Big Bang Theory has been mentioned in our sacred texts.
Me: Religions were not developed with scientific temperament, some of knowledge of science they exhibit was taken from that time’s developments in science and amalgamated into religious theories, whatever religions can answer they do for other questions they merely say that it is heresy to ask those questions. Religions cannot say anything about contemporary developments in Science but just articulate their version to prove themselves right, others wrong. When someone adheres to a particular religion they just believe in everything their religions say, whether it makes sense to other people or not.
Take an unsolved problem in Physics and solve it based on their holy book and you will automatically see the fallacy of statement that religions are words of God. Its pretty common for theists to believe whenever someone says that their book is scientific without reading the points because it makes them feel right, it boosts their ego.
Claim that something similar to Big Bang theory is mentioned in your text is absurd, if it was so then why noone claimed Big Bang Theory for 1400yrs. A new theory says there such Big Bangs keep taking place when parallel Universes collide with each other, now based on this one can not start saying that Hinduism is correct because something remotely related to so called creation and destruction of life routinely is mentioned in Hindu texts.
S: Whole of Universe behaves in some pre-defined ways according to laws of Physics, and you are saying that there is no intelligent design behind creation of Universe.
Me: Some theories in Physics show us how there can be many dimensions of space and When Universe is viewed in more dimensions of space, all laws of Physics Unify and we can describe what and why of everything.These theories are yet to be proved experimentally because rate at which Theoretical Physics has advanced is orders of magnitude than what Technology can be used to prove current Physics. We are yet to make telescopes large enough which can give complete view of electron structure and thus indirect methods have to be used. Such experiments are very expensive and are rarely supported by governments.
<I will be covering separate post on Hyperspace>

Summary

Broadly all theories can be categorized into 3 categories:-

1. Intelligent Design – Everything being created by some entity called God(s) , includes religions and spiritualism. Everything has a purpose . Breaks down on origin of god. No proofs and highly contradictory in nature.

2. Cosmic accidents – Universe originated from Nothing. Advanced Physics and here life is just an accident. Based on nothing but proofs, doesn’t has a complete theory of everything yet but is self correcting in nature .

3. Simulation – God is like a computer programmer who created Universe as a program with rules and we cant understand God’s dimensions just like computer characters can’t comprehend our Universe. Breaks down on origin of god again. Just a premise of nerd computer programmers.

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