If you are new to this blog, Welcome. You may want to start reading the series of articles at the beginning, or pick an article from the Table of Contents.
This article will be largely based on an excellent book that I have just read, but will also include some of my own thoughts and reactions to it. More about the book after my introductory comments:
Imagine what it might be like if you were suddenly presented with the absolute truth about God, the Creation of the universe, our own Souls, and our role in the system. What if some of your religious beliefs turned out be wrong? What if some of the science you learned (and believe) turned out to be inaccurate? What if you have misunderstood your relationship with God? What if the very foundations of your concept of reality were shown to be in error? What if the majority of popular opinion was shown to be way off base? Are you open-minded enough to accept and understand the real truth?
Many experts in the academic, religious and scientific communities are not open-minded enough to accept the truth, even if it is proven by overwhelming evidence. If new discoveries are contrary to the popular narrative, or not politically correct among their peers, the “experts” will dismiss, rule out, or just ignore the discovery, no matter how well-founded it is. That is the situation we find ourselves in, relative to recent scientific discoveries about the creation of the universe which prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that there was an intelligent Creator involved.
Wow! I just made quite a statement! Can I back it up? Yes, I can! My quest for knowledge of these subjects has led me (with God’s help) to a very interesting book, God and Soul – The Truth and the Proof by Jim Denney. This 2012 book pulls together information from many sources that shows that there is convincing and overwhelming evidence that God exists, that the soul is real, and that the universe was designed with you and me in mind. Everything the author presents is sourced, footnoted and verified. He presents both sides of every argument and urges the reader to fact check him.
I will list some of the major points of this book here:
- The universe was designed to bring forth intelligent life forms (us and perhaps others). This is known as the Anthropic Principle. Many of the parameters that govern physics, from the smallest particles, and the forces governing them, to the “Big Bang,” had to be set just right in order for the universe to form the elements needed for life, and to create our well balanced and regulated Solar System and Earth. The odds against these things happening by accident or coincidence are discussed in the book, and are beyond our capability to comprehend. The only explanations for this, other than a Creator, are variations of a “many worlds” or “multiverse” theory that says that all possible universes exist at once. For reasons discussed in the book, the multiverse theory is less rational than the concept of a Creator.
- We need BOTH Natural Selection and the Anthropic Principle. These concepts have been misunderstood by some, which has led to a false either/or choice. The New Atheists, especially, cling to their denial of any kind of Intelligent Design or Cosmic Designer.
- Physicists, in the study of quantum mechanics have discovered what seems like a very strange principle – in order for something to be real, it has to be observed by a conscious being. Electrons, photons, or other quantum entities, exist in a range of possible states until they are observed. The act of observation collapses the wave function to a discrete state. That’s when they become a physical particle. Physicist John Wheeler said we live in a “participatory universe.” We participate with the quantum world in making reality real.
Given this principle of quantum mechanics, along with the fact there were no human beings in the universe for most of its 13.7 billion year existence, the author suggests that the Cosmic Designer was also the Cosmic Observer, “who collapsed the wave function of everything that is, creating objective reality out of quantum potentiality. … When we arrived on the scene, the Cosmic Designer gave us the ability to collapse the wave function of our own little corner of reality.”
The book goes into a discussion of why the author maintains that this is a more viable solution than the MWI (Many Worlds Interpretation) or multiverse theory that is espoused by scientists and academics who refuse to acknowledge the possibility of a Creator.
- “You don’t HAVE a soul. You ARE a soul. You HAVE a body, temporarily.” (quoted from a novel, cited in the book.) Most of the argument for the reality of the soul is made by citing NDE’s (Near Death Experiences). In one of those, the patient said that she could move herself around the hospital, while outside of her body. She described seeing a blue tennis shoe on a 3rd or 4th floor window ledge, scuffed in the little-toe part, with the lace tucked under the shoe. A nurse, who previously had her own NDE, checked it out. She searched for, and found the shoe. It was not visible from the ground, and was exactly as the patient described. In another case, a woman was visited by a friend who had just died moments before the visit. The author ends the section on souls with this: “To those who insist that ‘there must be a rational explanation,’ I say, Of course there is. The soul is real.’ And that’s the most rational explanation of all.”
- “Our very existence is a miracle. In a purely scientific sense, we should not exist.” The book goes on to discuss experiments that have been made to prove the concept of spontaneous generation of life in a primordial soup. These experiments failed. Scientists have calculated the odds and found that such an occurrence is hopelessly improbable. Evolution must have had help.
- Earth, the planet we inhabit, is the result of a convergence of incredibly unlikely conditions. The book goes on to describe many of these conditions that make life possible here. The author states that “the ordinary works of the Cosmic Designer are the most spectacular miracles of all. Nature is God’s objet d’art, the tangible expression of the intellect, imagination, and soul of the Cosmic Designer.”
- “Everything we think of as ‘solid matter’ is mostly nothing. Matter is composed of atoms. Atoms are composed of electrons, neutrons, protons and lots of empty space. What are electrons, neutrons and protons? They are not hard little objects, like tiny marbles. No, they are probabilities, they are tendencies to exist. … In short, they are bits of information.” The book goes on to explain that matter and energy are digital. Even our perception of reality is digital.
The above are not all the points made in the book, but I think I have summarized the major ones. Each of them is thoroughly explained, with references citing where the information comes from. While it might be deep reading for a lot of folks, I think this book is one of the best I have encountered at explaining how the pieces of the puzzle fit together.
I’m not the least bit worried about the fact that this book doesn’t match the account in Genesis. Some parts of the Genesis account, and some other Bible passages, take on a fuller meaning when reviewed in light of the principles discussed in this book. The biggest conflict with Genesis is in the timing. I believe that God has a whole different way of dealing with time and space than we do, because he has access to dimensions that we don’t. When, and if, we get to understand how God can be in all places and all times at once, the timing will become an insignificant problem.
The author closes the book with “I have never heard God speak in an audible voice… Most of us never will. But for all of us, there is a still, small voice that whispers to us. It tells us who we are and where we belong – if we are listening. And if we follow that voice – if we go where it leads us – we will one day understand the meaning of this journey called Life.”