Saturday, September 01, 2007

Two Unanswerable Questions

1. Why is there such a thing as existence? We can explain matter to a great degree, but we can't explain why it exists and perhaps never will. Each answer will lead only to new questions. Some cosmologists are saying that matter is born of the interaction of two universes (whatever that means) but they cannot explain why those universes exist. Whether existence begins with God or mere material and energy working together through time, existence itself defies explanation. Why is there a "there".

2. Why do I know that I exist? As existence itself is inexplicable, so is awareness. We can explain the processes of thought in electrical terms but awareness, the fact that I am aware of those thoughts, defies all science.

Jubal knew only one absolute of theology; self-awareness was more than two chromosomes bumping into each other. Robert Heinlein Stranger in a Strange Land.

These two simple questions, in my opinion, render a materialistic explanation of the universe impossible. There is something to the universe that is beyond the reach of science and rationalism. Science and rationalism have a very important place in our thinking, but they also have their limits. They are limited to the physical aspects of a physical universe that clearly has an undergirding that is not part of our universe. Where our universe ends, so does science and pure reason, yet there is clearly something more beyond it.

I learned years ago that there were a limited number of basic dimensions: the three dimensions of space, the dimension of time, also mass and charge. These were the dimensions that we used in science as they were adequate for what we were doing. Yet as I contemplate the concept of awareness, I wonder if that is a hint of yet another dimension. A dimension that makes awareness possible.

I wonder.

3 Comments:

Blogger Angevin13 said...

Great post! I love this stuff. Cosmology is one of my favorite subjects. Two books I enjoed on the subject were John Gribbin's "In The Beginning" and Timothy Ferris' "The Whole Shebang."

8:06 PM  
Blogger Patrick Joubert Conlon said...

You nailed it. Atheists, materialists and evolutionists can answer the question "how" but not "why." Very nicely put.

2:51 AM  
Blogger Tim said...

Is there really such a thing as "time"? Or is it simply a human construct?

2:51 PM  

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