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Is there absolute proof that G-d exists?

by Rabbi Tzvi Freeman

  

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The Short Answer: 

Not intellectually. Whilst we seek an explanation for everything, human logic cannot prove anything absolutely. For absolute knowledge, you’ll have to find some other tool. In this case that tool is your Jewish soul.

The Askmoses Answer:

Absolute Proof

There is no absolute proof for anything at all. One of the conditions of intellect is that anything that can be intellectually proven can also be questioned. To put it another way, if it cannot be disproved, it is not an intellectual argument.

This “Principle of Falsification” was demonstrated by the great British philosopher, Karl Popper, and is generally accepted in scientific and philosophical circles today. It is also in consonance with the Talmudic position.

Furthermore, every intellectual argument requires axioms, which themselves cannot be proven. This was demonstrated in the 19th century by Karl F. Gauss, called by some the “greatest mathematician who ever lived,” who began to question the absoluteness of Euclid’s axioms. Later, in the 20th century, American mathematician Kurt Gödel demonstrated logically that no system can be proven without evidence from beyond that system. His paper was hailed universally as one of the most outstanding contributions to mathematics and philosophy in history.

In sum: Human logic cannot prove anything absolutely. For absolute knowledge, you’ll have to find some other tool.

Human logic cannot prove anything absolutely
Educated Conclusions

Nevertheless, the human mind can come to some very educated conclusions. Such as concluding that it is raining outside by going outside and getting wet in the rain. The possibility remains that our senses are lying to us, but we will always need to make some assumptions, if just to survive.

Often, we can assure ourselves with almost absolute certainty without even seeing the thing for ourselves. For example, by looking out the window and seeing the trees swaying we can assume that it is windy. By observing the lights going on, we can assume there is electricity in the wires. Or by bouncing electrons off of sub-microscopic objects, we can construct a working model of their form.

So too, the fact that there is a Primal Source for all that exists is one of the most evident facts there is. So is the fact that this Primal Source generates this world with design/intelligence.

G-d by Scientific Principle 

The concept of a Primal Source relies on an axiom that all of science relies upon: the Principle of Explanation. This principle simply states that all phenomena must have an explanation. Science is the endeavor of discovering those explanations. Molecules are explained by the dynamics of atoms. Atoms are explained by the dynamics of their sub-particles. The sub-particles are explained by photons. Eventually, there must be an explanation for the existence of matter and energy.

Without this principle, not only would there be no science, there would be no human endeavor whatsoever. In everything we do, we rely on the assumption that each thing has an explanation, thereby providing us with a consistent universe to deal with. Imagine the confusion if everything just appeared as though it had suddenly arrived out of nowhere.

The Primal Source, then, is nothing more than the ultimate explanation for all that exists, the end of the chain.

G-d beyond Science

What then, you ask, is the explanation for this Primal Source? But that is just the concept of a Primal Source: That there is something (if it can be called a “thing”) that does not require an explanation. Because otherwise we are really stuck: Either we surrender and say that there are things that do not require an explanation. Or we just say that the explanations go on and on ad infinitum—which really is the equivalent of saying that the cosmos as a whole has no explanation.


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COMMENTS

Absolute proof of The Creator's existence

Posted by: Anonymous, Tucson, AZ, USA on Dec 02, 2005

If the existence of The Creator could be "absolutely" proven, then HIS existence would be constrained within the limits of human knowledge. Simply put, The Creator is not constrained by the created.
Torah
Torah is G–d’s teaching to man. In general terms, we refer to the Five Books of Moses as “The Torah.” But in truth, all Jewish beliefs and laws are part of the Torah.
G-d
It is forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It is therefore customary to insert a dash in middle of G-d's name, allowing us to erase or discard the paper it is written on if necessary.