Leap of Logic

Why is it a logic leap to say that existence implies a creator, but statistical inevitability is not?

During a discussion I was having with one of my very good friends, a question came up that I had to stop and think about. It’s a delicate matter, with an important subtlety that has to be carefully spelled out. I don’t want to offend anyone, but I do want this point to be clear.

The discussion was about evolution, but more specifically, The Beginning. I was attempting to explain that creation (which implies a creator) is a leap in logic, and their response was that saying that something is statistically inevitable is the same kind of logic leap. But this is not true. So why is it a logic leap to say that existence implies a creator, but it isn’t to say that life is a statistical inevitability?

Statistical inevitability implies that something will happen given a long enough time scale. Aside from the true origin of the universe (which is impossible to determine), if the universe came into being on its own, it explains why it would’ve taken a very long time for things to finally take shape. The most-used and most appropriate analogy for this is the monkeys with the typewriters. Given enough time, if you put a handful of monkeys (even relatively stupid ones) in a room with a typewriter, they will eventually bang out all of Shakespeare’s writings exactly as they were written. Though this is highly improbable, it is statistically inevitable. The same is true for the formation of our galaxy, our sun, our solar system, our planet, our environment, and all species on the planet. Though it is highly improbable that life should spontaneously appear on some rock in the middle of nowhere, it is statistically inevitable given the laws of physics.

It is the essence of statistical inevitability that life would eventually develop over a long enough time period. There is no need for a creator in the definition of existence because if there was a creator, then something must’ve created the creator. Use the principle of Occam’s razor. If everything we know was created by something, it implies a creator. If there was a creator, then where did the creator come from?


One response to “Leap of Logic”

  1. GeekWhenTVsHadTransistors Avatar

    First of all, the definition of creation demands a creator or creators. It would be better to say existence or the natural universe. Next, life is not necessarily statistically inevitable. We really don’t know the statistical model that life is predicated upon, however Polya’s theorem provides one model. Polya’s theorem applies to a random walk. For 1 or 2 dimensions the probability of intersecting a certain point is 100% given enough time. But it falls for higher dimensions. Based on this I would argue we cannot conclude that science predicts the statistical inevitability of life. My personal opinion is that the statistical model of life is more like picking a combination lock. Once you’ve found the first number, it’s known from then on and you (evolution) finds the next number. Also many numbers work so we have a wide diversity of life on this planet. However I’m stating opinion and not fact. Scientifically speaking we just don’t know enough to conclude either way although we may discover future scientific evidence that leads to a definite conclusion one way or the other. At this point in our scientific understanding the question of existence boils down to personal opinion or belief and there’s no such thing as belief in science (just like there’s no crying in baseball).

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