Re: Hypostases (was: Natural Order & Belief)

From: Tom Caylor <>
Date: Tue, 28 Nov 2006 20:57:04 -0800

Bruno Marchal wrote:
> Le 24-nov.-06, à 10:03, Tom Caylor a écrit :
> > Have you read Francis Schaeffer's trilogy of books: The God Who Is
> > There, Escape From Reason, and He Is There And He Is Not Silent. He
> > talks about the consequences of the belief in the uniformity of natural
> > causes in a closed system.
> No. But if you want to send a little summary, please do.
> If by uniformity of natural causes in a closed system you mean
> something describable by a total computable function, I can understand
> the point (but recall I don't assume neither the notion of Nature nor
> of Cause). Now, the computerland is closed for diagonalization "only".
> That is something quite different, making computerland much open than
> anything describable by total computable functions.
> Bruno
There is no way that I can give a little summary, but I'll try anyway.
I think this will also go towards addressing Stathis' allusion to
One thing Schaeffer did was remind us that the assumptions of nature
and cause were foundational to modern science. We have to assume that
there is a nature to reality in order to study it and use our reason to
make sense of it. Reality has to "make sense" inherently, i.e. it has
to have an order to it, in order for us to "make sense" of it. Our
reason (rationality) makes use of antithesis, to induce cause and
effect. Perhaps nature and cause do not appear as formal assumptions
in comp, but do you not make use of a belief in them in the process of
thinking and talking about comp, and surely in the process of
empirically verifying/falsifying it?
Schaeffer maintained that the basis for antithesis is not that it was
an invention of Aristotle or anyone, but that the basis for antithesis
is reality itself, based on the God who is there (as opposed to not
being there). The existence of the personal God answers the questions:
1) Why is there something rather than nothing? i.e. the question of
the origin of the form of the universe, why does it "make sense"? What
is the basis for the nature of reality and beauty?
2) Why is man the way he/she is? Why is man able to have language and
do science, and make sense of the world? Why is man able to love and
figure out what is right? What is the basis for meaning? What is the
basis for mind? How can persons know one another?
3) Why is man able to know anything, and know that he knows what he
knows? What is the basis for truth? What is truth?
However, from the birth of modern science, we have taken a journey to
dispense with any kind of faith and try to be exhaustive in our
automony and control. Ironically we have abandoned rationality
(including antithesis), and we have abandoned ourselves to ourselves.
We are lost in a silent sea of meaningless 0's and 1's, and man is a
This is why I said that when we put ourselves at the center of our
worldview, it is a prison.
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Received on Tue Nov 28 2006 - 23:58:46 PST

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