Saturday, June 12, 2010

#36: Troy Brooks

The guy behind the infamous “4 step perfect proof for God of the Bible”. The argument is according to Brooks completely deductive (a word he doesn’t understand) and relies on no unquestionable assumptions. It is really quite interesting why he doesn’t do a better job of it – if you allow his hilarious fallacies to count as logically valid deductions, I suppose it would be relatively easy to prove the existence of God from any unquestionable assumptions, not only his dubious ones (the system needed would hardly be sound, but that is another matter). Among his “uncontroversial” assumptions are e.g. that evolution cannot be the whole story since it doesn’t account for “the spiritual and soulical” and “Even the unsaved exhibit an improvement in conscience, but since they reject Christ for their salvation which is an eternal choice, they are condemned to Hell for all eternity and permanently separated from God. They won't change their mind later after they are resurrected.” But enough; read it for yourself – every sentence in this proof is a worthwhile quote:

(notice also the change of goalposts from proving that God exists to challenging atheists to disprove the God of the Bible in step 3).

Here is the gist [this is the first paragraph of the “proof”]: “God said He proves Himself by observing nature. Let's see if He is right. 1) Something can't come from that which does not exist, so the universe requires a cause [yes, he assumes the cosmological argument]. 2) The universe can't always have existed because a) heat death would be far greater than it is, and b) mankind would have approximated into that alleged past eternity and not still be sinning to the extent it still does along the exponential progression of conscience we are clearly on. What other option is there than the uncaused (uncreated) created? [yes, his proof really assumes that argument from ignorance is a valid inference method]. Atheism is utterly destroyed and morally [?] bankrupt because it has no answer and never will. You would have to be God (having omniscience) to know if God exists when you hold out having to know all things to be sure. You are saying you won't accept proof of God unless you are God. Wow!”

Basically the argument is “we are continuously improving morally (we are morally better now than we were 5000 years ago, say); since we aren’t perfect yet, the universe must have existed for a finite amount of time; therefore: The Biblical God.” [yes, an implicit premise is "if the universe has existed infinitely, then humans must have as well].

It is discussed here. Don’t miss Brooks himself showing up in the comment section!

Diagnosis: Inane bozo. Probably insignificant but representative of a real and substantial class of bozos out there. Manages to provide evidence that elementary critical thinking should be on any elementary school curriculum, though.

13 comments:

  1. Some of my personal favorite lines:

    "IF ALIENS brought us here, you have to ask what caused them since they did not create themselves."

    Good he's taking the possibility that we may have been deserted on Earth by aliens, like a grown-up who doesn't approve of a child's new pet dumping it in some distant field. But if we have to ask what caused the aliens, don't we similarly have to ask what caused god? *yawn* these arguments get so boring, even when you introduce aliens into them!

    "Many skeptical scholars concede certain facts. Prophecies fulfilled are mathematically impossible unless Jesus is God."

    The word 'prophecies' links to another page on his site, where Brooks tells us that there are nearly 2,000 prophecies in the bible that mostly have been fulfilled. But the examples he gives from the bible as 'prophecy' are from the old testament about things which happen (400 years later) in the new testament. Mostly about Jesus being killed and then resurrected. It's these very claims that atheists deny, so using them to prove prophecy has come true is just circular silliness.

    Ack! I can't take any more! There is definitely a perfect proof of SOMETHING here, namely Brooks' idiocy. This argument has to win the logical fallacy grand prize or something; there were so many fallacies my internal stupidity-sensor short circuited!

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  2. I must apologize, I really should have added a disclaimer that Brooks' "argument" ought to only be consumed in small doses. It's a lot of logical fallacies to take in at once!

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  3. No we don't ask what caused God, because what we have proven is the uncreated exists, so that the God of the Bible meets this requirement in addition to the fact none can compare to Christ by the proof of His resurrection using the Minimal Facts Approach. Additionally, aliens would be in nature and nature always needs a cause, but that which is uncreated is outside of nature. Is it logical to ask what caused the uncaused? That's a contradiction.

    Almost all skeptical scholars concede Jesus died on the cross because of the overwhelming preponderance of evidence, nobody is more well documented in antiquity than was Jesus; nobody in the first two centuries I am aware of made a claim He didn't die on the cross. This prophecy was fulfilled among hundreds of others regarding his life. The return of Israel (1948) after a long while away is also prominent.

    These points answer ess bee's misunderstandings.

    As to Chaospet's issues, realize his misunderstandings too. Our soul has the functions of mind, will and emotion. These attributes provide us self-consciousness. How can that (just bouncing elements) which has no self-consciousness produce that which does. The lesser can't produce the greater. Likewise, our spirit which has the functions of intuition, communion and conscience (of God-consciousness) require that which has these attributes to produce them. The elemental table alone can't do that. There are not enough interatomic interactions nor the number of atoms in the universe for that to occur if it could.

    The cosmological argument commonly touted is not being used here. Rather the approach is to observe trillions of causes in nature to use this as overwhelming evidence that that which is in nature always needs a cause. Therefore, the universe needs a cause; and how silly it is to think that which does not exist somehow can cause that or make something come into being. The former doesn't exist. Nothing always comes from nothing for it doesn't exist! Hello mcfly!

    There is no ignorance in stating the fact we observe readily the exponential progression of conscience, and that if there was an eternity of the past of cause and effects we would not still be sinning to the extent we still do.

    The proof explicitly states that it is not arguing for human beings to have always existed if atheists are right, but that we would have approximated in the nearness to that past eternity. In Grade 10 you are taught in calculus class that anything approximating to eternity is effectively deemed as having existed for eternity. Really what's the difference between 10 trillion years ^ 10,000,000 and infinity. For our purposes and the proof of God they are the same. God does not require you to be a rocket scientist in order to understand properly basic beliefs.

    And remember, if you have to know all things to know if God exists, then you are claiming you have to be God to know if God exists. That's arrogance, pointing to self as the center of all things and is a spirit of eternal separation from God.

    http://biblocality.com/forums/showthread.php?3742-American-Loons-Ryan-Lake-%28chaospet%29&p=7470#post7470

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  4. Ooohh, target rich environment.

    "Almost all skeptical scholars concede Jesus died on the cross because of the overwhelming preponderance of evidence, nobody is more well documented in antiquity than was Jesus;"

    Simply false. The existence of Jesus as a historical person is debated, and even if he did, it is unlikely that his life followed the trajectory described in the Bible - after all, the life story presented there is just an amalgam of myths and stories associated with various contemporaneous religions in the area, from virgin birth to the temple scene to the execution. And even if the historical Jesus did exist ... well, many of the people on this list did definitely exist: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_messiah_claimants

    "This prophecy was fulfilled among hundreds of others regarding his life"

    Well, if I were to write prophecies of the late twentieth century now, I'd get a lot of details right, wouldn't I? Hey, even with very selective use of "prophecies" made by charlatans throughout the ages, I'd be able to piece together some remarkable coincidences. The Bible was after all heavily revised in retrospect to fit the official story. In order to impress, you have to come up with independent prophecies, from elsewhere (and not just vague horoscope-like drivel).

    "Rather the approach is to observe trillions of causes in nature to use this as overwhelming evidence that that which is in nature always needs a cause. Therefore, the universe needs a cause;"

    The is the cosmological argument, and I’ll leave it to someone else. Notice that "everything in the universe needs a cause, therefore the universe needs a cause" is a fallacy of division.
    In other words: "Nothing always comes from nothing" - so how did God come into existence? Ah, you allow him to be outside the system. Well, why not except other things from your claim about the universality of the causal story? For instance that the properties applying to the things in the universe don’t necessarily apply to the universe as a whole? And remember that the burden of evidence isn't on me - it's on those who claim to have definite answers, e.g. God. But none is provided - this is just another argument from ignorance.

    Interestingly, Brooks doesn't only claim to establish the existence of some supernatural deity, but the Christian God, the God of burning bushes and swarms of grasshoppers, rather than an amorphous blob of force existing outside nature. That's a huge leap, to put it mildly.

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  5. "Our soul has the functions of mind, will and emotion. These attributes provide us self-consciousness. How can that (just bouncing elements) which has no self-consciousness produce that which does. The lesser can't produce the greater. Likewise, our spirit which has the functions of intuition, communion and conscience (of God-consciousness) require that which has these attributes to produce them. The elemental table alone can't do that."

    This commits, among other things, the fallacy of division and an argument from ignorance. Look them up. For the first, notice that an engine has the property of enabling a car go forward. That doesn't require that the elements of the engine has the property. I can just isolate a spark plug and conclude that "this spark plug has the ability to make the car go forward". The property of making a car go forward arises when a lot of different elements are put together in a certain manner and acts together. Likewise, no sane person claims that consciousness is a property of single neurons or synapses. Rather, consciousness is a product of the elements of the brain working together. Consciousness is not a "thing", as defenders of souls usually assume, rather it is a series of processes.

    In addition, those who believe in immaterial souls have failed to address the imporant questions that hypothesis raises: the mental interacts with the physical; I react to my physical environment, and by mental acts I am able to do such physical actions as raising my hand. We know a lot about how these things happen, and at no point does anything suggest that the causal chains leave the realm of the physical. By altering the physical states of the brain, we also alter the mental states of a person, and the mental states of a person are reflected in the physical states of the brain. There is no evidence for causal processes appearing from elsewhere. In addition to providing evidence for the claim that it happens, the defender of an immaterial mind needs to explain how something non-physical can affect something physical.

    I'll leave the rest for others

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  6. I'm not sure where it has been proven, or by whom, that the 'uncreated exists'. If you could point me in this direction I would appreciate it!

    Also I know of a number of skeptical scholars (Earl Doherty, Gerald A. Larue, Bishop Shelby Spong, Robert M. Price...) who explicitly question whether a historical Jesus ever even existed, let alone died on the cross.

    So my misunderstandings still stand.

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  7. The proof was already given: 4 Step Proof for God (and the Minimal Facts Approach),
    http://biblocality.com/forums/showthread.php?3476-4-Step-Proof-for-God-amp-Minimal-Facts-Approach

    Most skeptical scholars who do peer review journal work (real scholars on the subject), admit Jesus died on the cross. Study Gary R. Habermas' work on this,
    http://www3.telus.net/trbrooks/garyhabermas.htm

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  8. G.D.,

    There is nothing to suggest anything was revised. The original disciples gave their testimony and died for that claim. Most of the New Testament according to the Dead Sea Scrolls was completed by 65 AD. Here are some other interesting facts that support no time for revision or legend,
    http://www3.telus.net/trbrooks/12groups.htm

    This is not the cosmological argument as you have commonly known it, for the cosmological argument requires all things must have a cause, rather than what I provide you the overhelming preponderance of evidence all things in nature require a cause. Do you see the difference? It is illogical to ask how God came into existence when the uncreated is proven to exist. That which is uncreated has no cause. And God does not exist in nature. Nature therefore proves the uncreated exists whom is God. The approach to take is to determine who is the uncreated Creator; we find that none can compare to Christ for this claim. Other things don't qualify because they are part of nature. What applies to the first event in nature partains to the beginning of the universe. We also know that which doesn't exist can't produce anything say, like a universe. Since the universe can't always have existed and can't start up from nothing, we are left with no other possibility than the Uncreated created.

    This is not an argument from ignorance but facts. It is a fact something can't come from that which does not exist and it is a fact based on Step 1 & Step 4 of the 4 Step Proof the universe can't always have existed. Hence, there is only one possibility the Uncreated created.

    Swarms of grasshoppers happen today, so what's the problem? Burning bushes occur today, so what's the problem? There are specific trees that act like charcaol as they burn. God uses nature in His purposes. Nothing is left undealt with by God. So the burden remains on you, since you can't overturn the 4 Step Proof for God and the Minimal Facts Approach, to remain sitting on the fence is intellectually dishonest.

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  10. And G.D.,

    You're assuming God's creation if it were to exist is just Himself delinenating His own parts. God is not propelling Himself, but He would be creating a wholly new thing, so your anology fails. Also, an engine is not lesser but greater or at least the sum of its parts; whereas God is infinitely still greater than His creation; man is only made in God's image. Eastern religions teach everything is God. The soul is a divisible part from the spirit, and the spirit is divisible from the body. If you would like to learn about the 3 divisible parts of man read The Spiritual Man,

    http://www3.telus.net/trbrooks/SMCFP.htm

    The ability of God-consciousness (spirit), self-consciousness (soul), and world-consciousness (body) whatever processes you may think are involved (beyond our understanding) nonetheless exist and elemental nature alone can't bring these functions together for various reasons such as not enough interatomic interactions in the history of the universe nor can elements in any combination ever do so either because that which is lesser can never produce the greater. All the parts of an engine you could shake together for eternity and would still never turn into an engine. It requires like mind intelligence to so do.

    When God breathed the breath of life into man, He directly created man's spirit. When the spirit made contact with the body the soul life was formed. The reason for believing the immaterial soul and spirit exist is because elements can't randomly come together to produce self-consciousness and God-consciousness. The other reason is that Jesus said we have a soul and spirit, and He proved He is God by His resurrection which you still can't find a naturalistic explanation for the data even most skeptical scholars concede.

    Satan is the god of this world and man takes after Satan, so you are free to alter man's mental state through medical procedures but God takes into account this is evil. Satan has the power of death, but this in no way has the power of annihilation upon man. And Satan can't prevent a person from being saved because we have free will. If you refuse salvation it is because you gave into Satan's beguiling. The soul is a combination of the body and spirit together like mixing dye and water together to produce ink. Man is a living soul and has a "soulical body". When the body dies, the spirit of man is saved by God. At the resurrection a new body is given, which awakens the soul life again, because the soulical man depends on a body and a spirit--a tripartite man.

    Since the uncreated, supernatural Creator created the universe, this explains how spirit can fuse with the physical to produce the soulical.

    http://biblocality.com/forums/showthread.php?3742-American-Loons-Ryan-Lake-%28chaospet%29&p=7471#post7471

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  11. "It is discussed here. Don’t miss Brooks himself showing up in the comment section!"

    That's cute. it's especially cute as Parture, above, is Troy Brooks, commenting on a Troy Brooks article.

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  12. Thanks. I trust I addressed the issues, thus stand victorious in the defense of the faith.

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    Replies
    1. Well no Muslim scholar accepts that Yeshua ben Yusef of Nazareth died on the cross. They believe that Judas Iscariot was the man who died on the cross and that Yeshua left Judea on the orders of Pontius Pilate to leave and not come back.

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