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Natural Revelation and God's Creation discuss Quantum Mechanics in the Theology forums; I know that Quantum Mechanics is wrong simply b/c it refutes determinsm which is implied the belief that all events have causes. However, I am ...

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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Quantum Mechanics

    I know that Quantum Mechanics is wrong simply b/c it refutes determinsm which is implied the belief that all events have causes.
    However, I am having a hard time forming my thoughts. Has anyone here ran into this. We cannot accept quantum mechanics and be Calvinists, so I figured this was a good place to ask for help in thinking through these issues.


    I am also going to post this in the Creation thread.
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    I don't believe that Scott whatshisname cannot make those "quantum leaps". Nor do I believe in Al.
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    Originally posted by JohnV
    I don't believe that Scott whatshisname cannot make those "quantum leaps". Nor do I believe in Al.
    Bakula, his name is Bakula..
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    Bakula? Or did he quantum leap into that? If he did, he came so close to leaping into a Baluka, or a Baluga.

    Anyways, I don't believe that quantum mechanics are of any use unless you have a quantum machine for them to work on. And then the question is whether or not they need a hoist, or whether they can levitate.
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    Greg,

    Quantum mechanics itself is not necessarily anti-Christian or un-Christian. Rather, the various interpretations of it are those which give rise to different philosophical theories of knowledge. In my view, the Christian worldview must take a realist position with regards to epistemology, because God is the creator and he has communicated to us. Is there a way to interpret quantum mechanics in a realist sense? The answer is 'yes'. Therefore, we need not throw out quantum mechanics.

    Brian

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    Originally posted by knight4christ8
    I know that Quantum Mechanics is wrong simply b/c it refutes determinsm which is implied the belief that all events have causes.
    However, I am having a hard time forming my thoughts. Has anyone here ran into this. We cannot accept quantum mechanics and be Calvinists, so I figured this was a good place to ask for help in thinking through these issues.


    I am also going to post this in the Creation thread.
    How do quantum mechanics contradict Calvinism?
    Patrick
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    Puritan Sailor's Avatar
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    Threads merged. Please don't start duplicate threads.
    Patrick
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    John you are a riot. LOL.

    Sorry about the threads Patrick.

    Brian,

    How and who determines QM in a realist sense? Bohm? I haven't read him yet.

    Patrick,

    Most interpretations of QM maintain that a particle has a superposition (spinning both up and down), but then when measured takes on either a totally up or a down spin (actually dif. polarizations, but spin helps the visualization). This is said to be an uncaused event. Nothing determines whether this particle will go one way or the other. Hence, determinism falls when there can be uncaused events. Not only that but reason also, and thus all meaning is lost. With nothing determining the outcome - man cannot know what will happen - nor can God except by foreknowledge . LOL. God must roll dice.

    Einstein rejected all this by saying that "God doesn't roll dice" and maintains that QM is not complete. QM however, through Bell's Experiment, supposedly proves that QM is correct in saying that there is no hidden variable which can contribute to the Completely Random outcome of these particles. No hidden variable, QM is complete. If QM is complete and right in the interpretations that I know of - Calvinism is threatened through determinism being threatened.

    Somehow our science went wrong somewhere. Maybe it was in assuming the constancy of light. I don't know. I welcome all to help me deal with this in any way they can. Brian, I had forgotten your expertise, but I really need you.
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    Originally posted by knight4christ8
    I know that Quantum Mechanics is wrong simply b/c it refutes determinsm which is implied the belief that all events have causes.
    However, I am having a hard time forming my thoughts. Has anyone here ran into this. We cannot accept quantum mechanics and be Calvinists, so I figured this was a good place to ask for help in thinking through these issues.


    I am also going to post this in the Creation thread.
    I fail to see how scienctific theory (in this case) is opposed to Christianity. We need to be careful. Here are some classic church blunders:

    The earth is the center of the universe, since Christ died for man...
    The earth is flat, since the Bible talks about its four corners...
    God would never let radio (later television) exist, since Satan is the Prince of the Power of the Air...
    God woud never let man fly in space, since (see above)...
    God would never let man land on the moon, since (see above)...

    I'll admit, my knowledge of quantum theory is pretty shallow. All I know about it is what I've read in Hocking's Brief History of Time...oh yeah and Michael Chriton. Hehehe

    With regards the threatening of determinism, we need to remember that science only deals with the observable. God cannot be observed, therefore issues of divine control of the universe cannot factor into scienctific theory and remain science. That is the realm of theology. Theology must guide and interpret our observations. So we might reject Chaos Theory, for instance, but we also need hold in tension the idea that God has created natural laws the govern the universe, too...at the risk of sounding deistic.'

    So, when I trip and fall, it is gravity that brought me to the ground and not God's hand hurling me down. Same holds true with quantum theory. Quarks and whatchamacallits are operating in accordance with the way God created them too, we just can't explain it, so it looks chaotic.
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    However, if a quantum particle was tested and lept out with an up spin, this particle influences all that God has instituted through ordinary means. Yet, GOd could not have known what its outcome would be except by foreknowledge b/c nothing that He created in it determined what it would do. Thus, our science is not even consistent with what msut be true of natural revealtion . . . there are no uncaused events.

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    Having recently seen the movie "What the $*#@% do we know ?" I have been recently questioning the nature of reality.

    The exciting aspect of their discovery is that they say science has found the existence of the soul, or "the observer". Determinism is in question. The sad part is that there conclusion is to acquiesce to pantheism or some Kantian idea of transcendence that is beyond the limits of our epistemological ability.

    The systems of QM are not yet defined well enough to be complete nor consistent. They are observing new aspects daily. God is revealing His majesty through it all, and they are left confounded.

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    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    QM is way over my head. I suspect that there are theological problems with this approach to understanding reality. But as a Star Trek and Michael Crichton science fiction fan (Timeline, yeah!) I do enjoy a good quantum yarn.
    Andrew

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    Originally posted by VirginiaHuguenot
    QM is way over my head. I suspect that there are theological problems with this approach to understanding reality. But as a Star Trek and Michael Crichton science fiction fan (Timeline, yeah!) I do enjoy a good quantum yarn.
    Me too, Andrew. I've tried to understand Hawking's books, but I can't. I've made quite a gain in his diagramatic of the curving of space, but it still is either far too simplistic or far too advanced for me. I wouldn't throw out quantum mechanics, because, after all, they were trained for their job; its not our fault they don't have quantum cars to work on.

    I think we need to use the word "deterministism" in a very closed sense. Calvinism is not deterministic in the generally used sense. It is not fatalistic. We do make real choices, and our lives and actions are significant. God is sovereign, and He has forordained all things. But the future is not to Him what it is to us, nor the past. And it is not so much that all is in the present with Him as it is that all is before Him, Who is not subject to time, to govern according to His will.

    I agree that quantum physiscs is still largely theoretical, and perhaps still only partially practical. If it were more known to us we would not have science-fictions based on hoped-for ends and applications; we would know better what the limitations are.

    That's as far as my limited knowledge takes me. Now, "Beam me up, Scottie."
    JohnV

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    Greg,
    It has been a while since I've thought about this subject. I will re-examine it in light of my Calvinism and get back to you with my thoughts.

    Brian

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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    I really do appreciate the humor guys. We can take confidence that our God will lead us in to all truth and the fool will be made silent.

    Thanks Brian. I would really appreciate that. We just dealt with Bell's Proof to give you an idea of where we are at.
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    Hi Greg,

    I'm not sure if this is what you're looking for, but I see part of the issue in terms of the failure to make two appropriate distinctions:

    1. The physicist/philosopher distinction
    2. The creator/creature distinction

    1. First, one problem is that physicists need to content themselves with being physicists. Too many physicists wrongly think it within their expertise to draw metaphysical conclusions about their work. The problem with this is that people are prone to believe them. Everyone seems to think that physicists are smart, so they often fall prey to the expert fallacy. In my opinion, physicists ought to leave issues of ontology and epistemology to the philosophers and theologians. Physics is still changing; even physicists don't have all the pieces of the puzzle. You don't have to take any of their conclusions about quantum realism too seriously.

    2. Second, I think the whole debate over realism/instrumentalism in the quantum realm, especially with regards to the indeterminacy issue, would be much easier to resolve if we recognize that quantum physics, and all of science generally, is conducted from the creature's perspective, not the creator's. Does God know where the particle is located in the box? Yes. It is within God's power to know and uphold his creation; it is within our power to attempt to discover truths about his creation. We are bound to fall short of God's knowledge about his creation due both to our sinfulness and finiteness. Thus, we must never take our scientific conclusions too far.

    Also, I think the Westminster Confession gives sufficient detail to the topic of causes in the physical world in order to explain quantum physics in relation to God's providence:

    III.I God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so as thereby neither is God the author of sin; nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.

    Whatever the right explanation for quantum phenomena is, we can be certain that it is a secondary cause, behind which stands God's providence in upholding the cause, as well as causality itself.

    Again:

    V.III God, in his ordinary providence, maketh use of means, yet is free to work without, above, and against them, at his pleasure.

    The laws that govern quantum mechanics are not merely inherent in the nature of reality, except insofar as God has instituted them in creation and continues to uphold them. They are the ordained means through which God works out the details of the physical universe.

    Remember, the God of the Bible is not Ben Franklin's watchmaker who wound up the universe to let it run on its own, but rather, he is intimately present and involved in upholding every detail of his creation. I know that some Arminians can imagine the God of the Bible as one who is subject to the forces of a brute reality, or a sort of chance force. They might even speak of the "risks" God took in making man. But insofar as they do, they are worshipping an idol, not the God of the Bible.

    Now, the application of these doctrines is this: If the indeterminacy in the location of a quantum particle is true, and not only apparent, then it is this way because God designed it that way and continues to uphold it in that way. We need not fear that the indeterminacy principle might overthrow the concept of God as the Sovereign Determiner. Rather, because God works through and in the physical world, we may safely investigate the world as it is, and however we find it to be, we can be confident that it is the way God decreed that it should be. When we go to measure the location of the quantum particle, the outcome was already determined by God long ago. Not only did he know what value we would measure, but he determined the measurement by his providence.

    Let me know if I answered your question or not. If you have any more specific issues related to this subject, I would be happy to talk to you more about it.

    Brian

    [Edited on 4-9-2005 by cultureshock]

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    If scientists come to the conclusions that contradict sriptur, then they need to reassess their data. I have a feeling, their idea of randomness here is more semantic. Just because we don't know how it happens or can't predict it, doesn't make it "random."
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    Originally posted by puritansailor
    If scientists come to the conclusions that contradict sriptur, then they need to reassess their data. I have a feeling, their idea of randomness here is more semantic. Just because we don't know how it happens or can't predict it, doesn't make it "random."
    Precisely my point. What we call "random" movement of particles is actually particles moving the way God ordained them too. We just call it "random" because we do not yet discern the pattern. Another possiblity is that God decreed them to move at random...which is not a problem since the creation is still subservient to the Almighty Creator.

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    Originally posted by knight4christ8
    However, if a quantum particle was tested and lept out with an up spin, this particle influences all that God has instituted through ordinary means.
    This is way over my head, so I shouldn't even be replying, but I just want to point out, that simply because it doesn't make sense to us doesn't mean it "isn't." For example, think about those lights in the deepest darkest part of the ocean that are there for no other known purpose except to glorify God by their existence, mammels that swim, birds that don't fly, fish that walk, and the marvelous work of the platypus. The universe is built upon laws and rules, yet God seems to take pleasure in creating objects that violate His "laws", as if to say "I am the Creator, and I can do what I will with my creation."
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Very well said all.

    Thank you Brian.

    Just for some of your reference, QM claims that there are no patterns. THey claim that according to QM the probability of a particle is estimated with precision as 1/4, but when we try to find patterns, or think that there are hidden variables which we don't know about we com up with x>1/3. Thus, QM claims that their work is done, and that their claim to uncaused events is justified.
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    Greg:
    Are you talking about the Heisenberg Law of Uncertainty instead? Or is quantum theory derived from it? I am not sure of the distinction myself. I think it is pretty clear that we're all talking about something we don't really understand. And I suppose that would assume physicists who study quantum physics the right to stand in judgment of their less informed philosopher contemporaries in making universaly philosophical assertions.

    Janice spoke of lights without reason, fish that walk, mammals that swim, and birds that don't fly. We could also talk, at least I do, of quantum mechanics without a quantum car to work on, in jest of course. But we also talk about the limitations of our Confessional standards, knowing that we have formulated them in our own weaknesses, even though we know they derive from an infallible source. We are more certain of these latter than we are of the former, as Patrick rightly observed I think. We who are scientifically inclined were at one time quite convinced of Newtonian law, and that is now passe, it seems. One question that still remains in my mind is that, if all things are relative to the speed of light, according to the Theory of General Relativity, then would it be correct to assume that the Theory of General Relativity is also relative to the speed of light? (I'm speaking not specifically, but generally. )

    None of this undermines my own certainty of my Lord's love for me and for each of us who confess Him. If quantum mechanics means to undermine or subjectivise my own certainty, then I must regard it as wrong. But in turn, I must study seriously whether it is the scientists who are wrong, or whether the notion itself is wrongly assumed. The Bible grants us certainty, of that I am sure; and this in turn legitimizes scientific endeavours.
    JohnV

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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    I agree.

    I will have to return after I am well to be sure that I got all of that.
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    Ex Nihilo is offline. Inactive User
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    Quantum mechanics is a major problem for naturalistic determinism, but since Calvinism does not assume that all events have naturalistic causes, QM is not a problem at all for Calvinism. (If we assume that God's sovereignty of the universe means always using secondary natural causes, we have to exclude the resurrection and the regeneration of our own hearts.)

    Hence, determinism falls when there can be uncaused events. Not only that but reason also, and thus all meaning is lost. With nothing determining the outcome - man cannot know what will happen - nor can God except by foreknowledge . LOL. God must roll dice.
    Nor can God know except by foreknowledge? But God does have foreknowledge. Why is this a problem?

    Would you claim that your thoughts are naturalistically determined with a physical cause? Surely not. Yet God knows them before they happen. He needn't roll dice. He knows and ordains what will happen through the sovereign working of his will. It is as if you are saying that God must act in patterns we can discern and through causes we understand. He needn't. He can act directly within his world or he can use causes that make no sense to use. I don't know which this is, frankly.

    My physics prof has a web site where he discusses this. You might not agree with everything he says (though I believe he is a Calvinist), but it's an interesting read:

    http://cavserver.lacollege.edu/Sprow...uantumtalk.htm
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    Ex Nihilo is offline. Inactive User
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    I realized that what I was saying what slightly unclear:

    Scientists claim on the basis of QM that there is no (known) cause for whether a given photon goes one way or another. That is, we have no naturalistic explanation for the photon's "choice."

    The lack of natural cause doesn't mean there is no cause.

    What if God himself ordains the direction of the photon's path? This isn't inconsistent with our view of a supersovereign God. (And if you click the link, that's also my prof's position.)

    [Edited on 4-10-2005 by Ex Nihilo]
    Evie B.
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    one problem is that physicists need to content themselves with being physicists. Too many physicists wrongly think it within their expertise to draw metaphysical conclusions about their work. The problem with this is that people are prone to believe them. Everyone seems to think that physicists are smart, so they often fall prey to the expert fallacy. In my opinion, physicists ought to leave issues of ontology and epistemology to the philosophers and theologians. Physics is still changing; even physicists don't have all the pieces of the puzzle. You don't have to take any of their conclusions about quantum realism too seriously.
    Science is funny this way - they are making uneducated guesses all around and believe they are "posing" good ideas. Now some ideas are good, but theorizing is dangerous (just look at the theory of evolution) without some ultimate reality that remains logically consistent. Science, at its best, is simply guessing at what they think is true based on a limited amount of information. They are, then, forced to make assumption that they think are right, and people, often just take them at face value as being correct.

    In other words, the path of photons seem obscure and undetermined to pagan scientists who have no standard of ultimate reality other than their own brain, but Christians know better.
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    I find quantum mechanics intersting but my knowledge is too limited of it. Whether it is true (and I believe it it) I must at the end of the day say, "Such knowledge is too wonderful for me." Also, what kind of determinism are you holding to?
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Sorry for such a delay in my reply. Hopefully you notice it.

    I hold to soft determinism, just as any Calvinist does. All things are determined by our sovereign Father, but all agents act with their individual willingness at the forefront of their minds.

    Also, theoretical physicists will not let you speak if you do not believe them. Thye believe that it is apart from empirical knowledge that QM has been founded. Rather its basis for absolute truth is on its supposed interpretation of unmistakable "superpostitions" that localized experiments show to be present in nature. These "superpositioned" particles become understandable ONLY after measurement, but before are completely paradoxical and blurry in nature. The outcome of measurement is ALWAYS unpredictable and therefore even God, according to them, could not know what a particle is going to do when measured.
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    Originally posted by knight4christ8

    The outcome of measurement is ALWAYS unpredictable and therefore even God, according to them, could not know what a particle is going to do when measured.
    Thank you for reminding me of the popular "scientific" view of subatomic uncertainty.

    I remember being ticked off when I read Stephen Hawkings saying that very thing. It is sad how such a smart physicist can miss something so basic to logic.

    Even on a super-simplistic level, using nothing more than a mere Arminian (gasp!) understanding of God's Sovereignty, Hawkings' logic falls apart. If God exists outside of time, then it is no harder for God to see a future event that will be measured than it is for Him to see a past event that has been measured. (So they shouldn't even have to be Calvinists to see that they are wrong.)

    The physicists may then retort that it's nonsense to assume God could be outside of time. But they forget that *they* are the ones who started speaking about time as a "4th dimension" in the first place! They recognize time as integrally intwined with the fabric of space itself, thus the term, "space-time continuum". Now, if time is actually a "thing" that is intertwined with space, then it is just as much a part of creation as space is. And if we postulate a deity that created space, we necessarily postulate a deity that created time. And if He created time, then He is necessarily outside of it, and should be able to see the end just as clearly as the beginning.

    Even postulating a no-name deity, and even allowing a mere Arminian view of such a god's sovereignty, the physicists are still proved incorrect in a very simple and basic way. Their logic stinks. God most certainly DOES know what every subatomic particle will do, long before it ever happens.




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  29. #29
    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Joseph,

    Where have you been all of my life? I love it. Great reply. It is so basic. It shows the "wise" men of this world to be fools, yet those who rely on the Word to be most priveleged in grace and understanding.
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    InSixDays is offline. Inactive User
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    ICR has this to say about QM.

    Not sure I agree. Gary North's Is the World Running Down?: Crisis in the Christian Worldview has a good discussion of QM too.
    Adam T. Ross
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  31. #31
    Ex Nihilo is offline. Inactive User
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    Originally posted by biblelighthouse
    Originally posted by knight4christ8

    The outcome of measurement is ALWAYS unpredictable and therefore even God, according to them, could not know what a particle is going to do when measured.
    Thank you for reminding me of the popular "scientific" view of subatomic uncertainty.

    I remember being ticked off when I read Stephen Hawkings saying that very thing. It is sad how such a smart physicist can miss something so basic to logic.

    Even on a super-simplistic level, using nothing more than a mere Arminian (gasp!) understanding of God's Sovereignty, Hawkings' logic falls apart. If God exists outside of time, then it is no harder for God to see a future event that will be measured than it is for Him to see a past event that has been measured. (So they shouldn't even have to be Calvinists to see that they are wrong.)

    The physicists may then retort that it's nonsense to assume God could be outside of time. But they forget that *they* are the ones who started speaking about time as a "4th dimension" in the first place! They recognize time as integrally intwined with the fabric of space itself, thus the term, "space-time continuum". Now, if time is actually a "thing" that is intertwined with space, then it is just as much a part of creation as space is. And if we postulate a deity that created space, we necessarily postulate a deity that created time. And if He created time, then He is necessarily outside of it, and should be able to see the end just as clearly as the beginning.

    Even postulating a no-name deity, and even allowing a mere Arminian view of such a god's sovereignty, the physicists are still proved incorrect in a very simple and basic way. Their logic stinks. God most certainly DOES know what every subatomic particle will do, long before it ever happens.




    [Edited on 6-13-2005 by biblelighthouse]
    I agree with you, but I think the point where we disagree with most physicists has more to do with the Copenhagen Interpretation, and not QM itself.
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    Ex Nihilo is offline. Inactive User
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    Here's a funny t-shirt. Well, I think it's funny.

    http://www.thinkgeek.com/tshirts/science/6dff/
    Evie B.
    New Members Class, RPCNA, Cambridge, Massachusetts

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    Larry Hughes is offline. Inactive User
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    Quantum Mech. is simply a statistical way to predict subatomic motion and position where instrumentation cannot measure it simultaneously - because the method we have to do so itself influences the measurements being taken. Therefore, a statistical predictor QM has been developed.

    In simple language it predicts what we cannot directly measure without interfering with the measurement itself. In other words our technology cannot handle it.

    From this arises a philosophical system about things popping into and out of existence. The problem grows because many develop what occurs at the nano level and bring out implications on the macro level.

    In a way it is not a whole lot different than saying a coin has a chance of 50/50 to be heads or tails, and then developing a whole philosophy on the idea of chance. When in fact chance is merely statistical language and not a force or thing that exists itself.

    Ldh
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  34. #34
    Baroque Norseman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Larry Hughes
    Quantum Mech. is simply a statistical way to predict subatomic motion and position where instrumentation cannot measure it simultaneously - because the method we have to do so itself influences the measurements being taken. Therefore, a statistical predictor QM has been developed.

    In simple language it predicts what we cannot directly measure without interfering with the measurement itself. In other words our technology cannot handle it.

    From this arises a philosophical system about things popping into and out of existence. The problem grows because many develop what occurs at the nano level and bring out implications on the macro level.

    In a way it is not a whole lot different than saying a coin has a chance of 50/50 to be heads or tails, and then developing a whole philosophy on the idea of chance. When in fact chance is merely statistical language and not a force or thing that exists itself.

    Ldh
    Right or wrong, that just sounds cool.
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    Larry Hughes is offline. Inactive User
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    When I was in quantitative chemical analysis, one of my college chemistry minor classes, this theory both fascinated me but even as an unbeliever the philosophical extension drawn from it seemed absurd (popping in and out of existence). You have to be real careful what QM is saying and what it is not under explaning real physical Vs. statistical probabilities. Some of you that have taken chemistry probably recall that QM is the theory which influences the atom structure. The old atom structure in classic chemistry, drawn from macro physics, was the electron orbital around the protons and neutrons (like the planets around the sun) structure or spherical shell orbitals. Under QM and the probability density calculations (statistically where we might expect to find an electron) - the visual that one are various.

    For example instead of a circular planet typ orbit, one of these statistical probability density (area about where one might expect to find an electron) area at a particular energy level is a sort of mirrored tear dropped area of "probability" around the nucleous. In which the "probability" of the electron at this energy level (P) of being "here" (in that density cluster) about the nucleus is within these tear paralleled shaped clouds areas if you will. These are merely statistical probability density areas bound mathematically/statistically by the predicting calculation. The bounds are not real physical per se.

    You may find this (below) helpful in describing the often confused difference in the phenomena as in real physical Vs. the statistcal predictor. Its not mine but an excert.

    Ldh

    Why was quantum mechanics developed?

    In the early 20th century some experiments produced results which could not be explained by classical physics (the science developed by Galileo Galilei, Isaac Newton, etc.). For instance, it was well known that electrons orbited the nucleus of an atom. However, if they did so in a manner which resembled the planets orbiting the sun, classical physics predicted that the electrons would spiral in and crash into the nucleus within a fraction of a second. Obviously that doesn't happen, or life as we know it would not exist. (Chemistry depends upon the interaction of the electrons in atoms, and life depends upon chemistry). That incorrect prediction, along with some other experiments that classical physics could not explain, showed scientists that something new was needed to explain science at the atomic level.

    If classical physics is wrong, why do we still use it?

    Classical physics is a flawed theory, but it is only dramatically flawed when dealing with the very small (atomic size, where quantum mechanics is used) or the very fast (near the speed of light, where relativity takes over). For everyday things, which are much larger than atoms and much slower than the speed of light, classical physics does an excellent job. Plus, it is much easier to use than either quantum mechanics or relativity (each of which require an extensive amount of math).

    What is the importance of quantum mechanics?
    The wave-particle duality of light and matter

    In 1690 Christiaan Huygens theorized that light was composed of waves, while in 1704 Isaac Newton explained that light was made of tiny particles. Experiments supported each of their theories. However, neither a completely-particle theory nor a completely-wave theory could explain all of the phenomena associated with light! So scientists began to think of light as both a particle and a wave. In 1923 Louis de Broglie hypothesized that a material particle could also exhibit wavelike properties, and in 1927 it was shown (by Davisson and Germer) that electrons can indeed behave like waves.

    How can something be both a particle and a wave at the same time? For one thing, it is incorrect to think of light as a stream of particles moving up and down in a wavelike manner. Actually, light and matter exist as particles; <<<what behaves like a wave is the probability of where that particle will be>>>. The reason light sometimes <<<<appears>>>> to act as a wave is because <<<<we are noticing the accumulation of many of the light particles distributed over the probabilities of where each particle could be>>>>.

    For instance, suppose we had a dart-throwing machine that had a 5% chance of hitting the bulls-eye and a 95% chance of hitting the outer ring and no chance of hitting any other place on the dart board. Now, suppose we let the machine throw 100 darts, keeping all of them stuck in the board. We can see each individual dart (so we know they behave like a particle) but we can also see a pattern on the board of a large ring of darts surrounding a small cluster in the middle. This pattern is the accumulation of the individual darts over the probabilities of where each dart could have landed, and represents the 'wavelike' behavior of the darts.
    Larry Hughes
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Thanks Larry. That is a lot of good info. I apologize, but I skipped thru most of it.

    My main point is that the Copenhagen interpretation is actually being used by some Arminians to support their belief that free-will can actually exist. If God cannot determine what a aprticular atom is going to do then His sovereignty falls apart. I seem to lean toward Bohm's interpretation, though this has problems in and of itself (i.e. it must deny Einstein's claim that light's speed is constant). I am all for this though b/c it also helps me explain how we can live in a 10,000 yr. old universe and be recieving light that, if light's speed has always been the same, most scientists claim to be reaching earth after millions of years of travel. In a hurry . . . hope this made sense.
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  37. #37
    Puritan Sailor's Avatar
    Puritan Sailor is offline. Puritanboard Doctor
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    Originally posted by knight4christ8
    Thanks Larry. That is a lot of good info. I apologize, but I skipped thru most of it.

    My main point is that the Copenhagen interpretation is actually being used by some Arminians to support their belief that free-will can actually exist. If God cannot determine what a aprticular atom is going to do then His sovereignty falls apart. I seem to lean toward Bohm's interpretation, though this has problems in and of itself (i.e. it must deny Einstein's claim that light's speed is constant). I am all for this though b/c it also helps me explain how we can live in a 10,000 yr. old universe and be recieving light that, if light's speed has always been the same, most scientists claim to be reaching earth after millions of years of travel. In a hurry . . . hope this made sense.
    Arminians will only shoot themselves in the foot if they try to use science to defend heresy. Free will is not taught in Scripture. Therefore it will not be taught in natural revelation either. And even so, if nature were entirely random, that doesn't explain how abstract entities like logic and conscious thought are affected by it. They have no grounds to move from the material to the immaterial.

    [Edited on 7-14-2005 by puritansailor]
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    knight4christ8 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    I completely agree Patrick. Though, I cannot seperate the two in this case(i.e. material and non-material). An uncaused event in any realm allows for the destruction of reason itself . . . thus no distinction between the infinite and the finite . . . destroying God as well as all consciousness. No way! QM will come around.

    You are right! Arminians are shooting themselves in the foot, and sooner or later science will come to unveil their shameful deciet and ignorance.
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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    http://www.commonsensescience.org/

    Is a site that I have found interesting, however my knowledge is just a level below where it needs to be to fully understand.

    The central concept is that the QM is unnecessary and one can do better than QM is able to do with Classical Mechanics. The problem, that cause a need for QM was a faulty model of the atom. Once this is rectified E&M is all one needs to go as far as one could want to go.

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  40. #40
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    Originally posted by Larry Hughes
    Quantum Mech. is simply a statistical way to predict subatomic motion and position where instrumentation cannot measure it simultaneously - because the method we have to do so itself influences the measurements being taken. Therefore, a statistical predictor QM has been developed.

    In simple language it predicts what we cannot directly measure without interfering with the measurement itself. In other words our technology cannot handle it.

    From this arises a philosophical system about things popping into and out of existence. The problem grows because many develop what occurs at the nano level and bring out implications on the macro level.

    In a way it is not a whole lot different than saying a coin has a chance of 50/50 to be heads or tails, and then developing a whole philosophy on the idea of chance. When in fact chance is merely statistical language and not a force or thing that exists itself.

    Ldh
    Contrary to popular belief, QM is not merely a statistical prediction of position that cannot measured due to lack of ability. The statistical nature of variables like momentum and position is not a technological limit, but a theoretical limit. That is, in principle, if you follow the mathematical theory that underlies QM, you are logically forced to say that the the position is not a single value (i.e., x = 2m), but a range of values that vary in intensity (i.e., a function). Anyone who knows their mathematics will understand the difference between a point value and a function. This is why it has philosophical implications. It overturns the classical view of position and certainty on the subatomic level. The whole point is that the uncertainty is seen as a feature of the natural world, rather than due to lack of knowledge or ability. Yet, it is not to be understood as nature's failure to know, or even the inability of a "God's-eye perspective" to know the proper position. Thus, it is a mistake for any to try to use it to limit God. Instead, the position cannot be described in a single value, yet certainly not in such a way that God could not know (of course). It is hard to explain, and I am not very good at explaining.

    Please, if you want to talk about quantum mechanics, study it from a reliable, accurate source. I recommend Fritz Rohrlich's From Paradox to Reality. One thing that really annoys me is when theologians talk about a science that they have not studied. This is why both "creation scientists" and those who hold the "framework hypothesis" both really tick me off. Some from both groups try to combine theology and science without ever knowing what science is.

    As a Van Tillian, I believe that QM, if it is true, puts to death the Enlightenment's Modernist view of science. It kills Modernism's attempt to establish one comprehensive system for explaining everything scientifically. It allows for paradox, which forces man to face his finitude and sinfulness.

    Greg, Van Til will set you straight on QM.

    Brian

    [Edited on 9-6-2005 by cultureshock]

    [Edited on 9-6-2005 by cultureshock]

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