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Dr. Zakir Naik – Does God exist?

Dr. Zakir Naik

…on

Why God exists, or “Does God Exist?”

From: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2s14T6x5AM

ZN:

Atheists believe in science and technology – they say they don’t need religion and that we don’t need religion to explain anything.

That is more or less true, although “believe in science” is perhaps a religious perspective on scientific beliefs. It is said that Atheism is just another belief system, but that is not accurate. Atheists do not believe in a non-god, we simply do not believe in any gods… atheism is a lack of religious beliefs, not so much a belief system. Science is something separate to religion and atheism, most religious people still “believe in science”,  much like your average atheist.

 

ZN:

Supposed there is found machinery no one has ever seen before. His (ZN’s) first question would be, who is the first person who can tell you the mechanisms of this machine? The atheist will answer ask the manufacturer, inventor or creator of the machine about it, he says.

 This is a loaded question… but that aside.

ZN

 Big bang = creation’s source (Koran mentions the Big Bang – is that just a coincidence? ) 

The moon’s light is a reflection he said we learned this 300 years ago…

This is not exactly true (from wikipedia):

The ancient Greek philosopher Anaxagoras (d. 428 BC) reasoned that the Sun and Moon were both giant spherical rocks, and that the latter reflected the light of the former.  His atheistic view of the heavens was one cause for his imprisonment and eventual exile

 

The Quran mentions this 1400 years ago, yes kind of with a bit of imagination, but that is not terribly impressive as Anaxagoras figured it out without any gods more than 2400 years ago, he beat the Koran by a thousand years.

The earth is round, he again skips the Greeks:

The concept of a spherical Earth dates back to ancient Greek philosophy from around the 6th century BC,[1] but remained a matter of philosophical speculation until the 3rd century BC when Hellenistic astronomy established the spherical shape of the earth as a physical given. The Hellenistic paradigm was gradually adopted throughout the Old World during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages.[2][3][4][5] A practical demonstration of Earth’s sphericity was achieved by Ferdinand Magellan and Juan Sebastian Elcano‘s expedition’s circumnavigation (1519−1521)

 Again he uses recycled Koranic mythology, of a roundish earth written down 1400 years ago praising Muhammad for it whilst Hellenistic astronomy figured it out 2300 years ago… they again don’t mention any gods. Then the earth revolving around the sun and having it’s own motion (Quran 21:33):

And it is He who created the night and the day and the sun and the moon; all [heavenly bodies] in an orbit are swimming.

And He it is Who has created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating.

 Etc… wouldn’t say there is much reading of rotating around own axis without a fair dash of predisposition. Sounds more like they are describing seeing the sun and moon move in a semi circle,  ‘floating’ across the sky. Creation myth is interesting, but the Quran’s story is not unique at all, it really is just another recycled version of the myths that preceded it, just like the others.

See what we know about the types of creation myth if you like:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creation_myth#Types

 Also from Wikipedia:

Heliocentrism, or heliocentricism,[1] is the astronomical model in which the Earth and planets revolve around a relatively stationary Sun at the center of the Solar System. The word comes from theGreek (ἥλιος helios “sun” and κέντρον kentron “center”). Historically, heliocentrism was opposed to geocentrism, which placed the Earth at the center. The notion that the Earth revolves around the Sun had been proposed as early as the 3rd century BC by Aristarchus of Samos,[2] but Aristarchus’s heliocentrism attracted little attention until Copernicus revived and elaborated it

 Forgets all about – for example – the Greeks yet again, seems they figured most of these things out long before the Quran … It seems fair to say most if not all of these accolades belong not to Muhammad’s wisdom so much as to human philosophy, science and the faculties of intellect. One might also ask why, if the Quran knew so much about the earth revolving around the sun it still took the likes of Copernicus to finally confirming that little puzzle only in 1543, without the Quran. I am also not aware of any Imams over the 1400 years of Koranic existence that mentioned any of these scientific breakthroughs that took the rest of humanity so long to figure out, who did it without the Quran, the Bible, the Vedas or any of the holy texts for that matter.

Then ZN continues:

Goes on about water cycles…

Mountains prevent the earth from trembling…

All creatures come from water…

The spider, the ant.. the bee… embryology (a leech like substance from the Quran = an embryo)…

Goes on about a thousand verses in the Quran speaking about science… Where does this scientific knowledge come from? How could this scientific information be contained within the Quran?

Atheists can only say the inventor … the creator .. Allah.

Many very old holy texts use creation myth and get bits of it more or less right sometimes – more often “metaphorically” than more so. The thing about mythology is that it has been around long before Islam, is very very old and has had a lot of time to accumulate. In and amongst the supernatural nonsensical bits you almost always get nuggets of wisdom, good ideas carried across from generation to generation, much of it crystallized within our religious mythologies. Hindus, Christians and Scientologists will all show you scientific accuracies in their holy texts and ask why you don’t believe in their gods?

Zakir Naik’s conjecture, that because the Quran has some [seemingly] scientific accuracies in it means that a God, and an Islamic god at that exists, is simply not true. It’s a giant leap from premise to conclusion. There are many reasons why the Quran (and the other holy texts) has truth in it, mainly because people write things down and sometimes they get it right, but he gives no good reason to believe it requires a god for them to do so. Also, everything he mentions that the Quran had ‘known’ for 1400 years was figured out by people, usually before the Quran mentions anything and the people figuring it out always finding scientific explanations that do not require a god concept to explain them. He also seems to be quoting selectively or hasn’t discovered wikipedia, which is a bit of a concern either way.

  The Inventor

So Zakir uses the classic creationism argument: Because we can see “god’s machinery” and life and so on, it means there must be a god, who’s making it all. They usually take it deeper and mention the complexity of things such as life, the eye etc…

There are about a billion things online that you can read about why creationism makes no sense and answers nothing with many books that can explain it much better than I could. If you would like to read about the current thinking on the subject Google and Amazon is your friend.

So there must be a creator because we see creation? The creationist’s main argument is doomed early on because the argument requires an assumption about existence which leads to a problem. The assumption is that anything that exists, can only exist if something made it. But that maker, the creator must exist to be able to create anything and so therefor, by their own argument must also have been created. So some presumably other god must have made The God, and was created by a god before that…. and so on… they call it an infinite regress. This ends in a “God did it, was always there, is exempt from the rules, don’t ask..etc.” but never an explanation as to how any of it works. If we ask God how he works, there is no answer – we are often not even allowed to ask!

 

So, how do we explain all these complex machines that no one has ever seen? Well, he’s (ZN’s) analogy is not a great one to be honest. Really, what we tend and try to do when we see something we have never seen, scientifically,  is try to figure out if it has a function, how it developed, what shaped it,  how it all fits together and where it came from. What created it perhaps, but not necessarily Who created it. This is what science does… we think, try out experiments, falsify and confirm. This philosophy of science has led us to figuring out a tremendous amount about how the universe works, life and things in general. None of what science has figured out requires any notion of a creator anywhere. Complex things come from lots of time, matter and it’s motions, energy.

Usually the question now would be posed: “But where did it all, the energy come from then, why does energy exist at all?”

Even though science currently has no definite answer it is rich with hypothesis and some very smart people have come up with some very interesting ideas, ranging from multi versus to intertwined dimensions and more. The difference between the science ideas is that all the scientists thinking of them, work on experiments and mathematical proofs to explain, show, verify or falsify their ideas. Religious concepts and ideas, when it comes to the supernatural, aggressively and passionately avoid scrutiny. We could easily devise all kinds of experiments to verify at least some religious claims. Find the effectiveness of prayer say… and in fact we have done little tests which tend to show no effect or inconclusive results but a mere $5m has been spent on research. It’s also worth noting that there is not a single recorded case of a person that has been prayed out of AIDS, or cancer or malaria… if we had to rely on prayer, we’d all be doomed, thank God for science. But why has religion all but  point blank refused to have itself tested for validity?

It also must be said that even though we know a good amount, frankly we don’t know “why” anything exists, or even if that is a meaningful question at all. We know things exist, or are pretty sure of that at least but we have no reason to believe it does so because of a god, and there has up to now been no reason given by any holy sage to think otherwise.

Interesting – mostly – Wikipedia Stuff on it:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turtles_all_the_way_down

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinite_regress

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debate_between_sheep_and_grain

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creation_myth

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Studies_on_intercessory_prayer

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vedas

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20120227181905AAR3Qct

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinite_regress

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creationism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copernicus

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heliocentrism#Greek_and_Hellenistic_world

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellenistic_astronomy#Hellenistic_astronomy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spherical_Earth

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exploration_of_the_Moon

http://corpus.quran.com/translation.jsp?chapter=21&verse=33

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regress_argument

Posted in Other, Why Gods do not Exist.


6 Responses

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