Why Free Will, Prayer and an Omnipotent God Are Mutually Exclusive | HuffPost
(with omnipotence implying free choice of actions without limitations) immutable) being cannot have a two -way relationship with temporal creatures. . of the actuality that happens at a given point) are mutually exclusive. Why Free Will, Prayer and an Omnipotent God Are Mutually Exclusive the notion of free will granted by an omniscient and omnipotent god. Being omnipotent requires being omniscient, and vice versa. omniscience are not only mutually-necessitating, they are also mutually-exclusive. as a flowchart, would better illustrate the relationships involved, but I figured that this would.
And maybe it is impossible for them to exist. But, this still does not mean they can't exist. This may sound nonsensical, but it is, nevertheless, technically true.
I myself, for a great long time, proposed that an omnipotent being couldn't exist, because of the very paradoxes I mentioned. However, upon examining the implications of omnipotence to their fullest extents, I came to a realization: In all my contemplation on the issue, I had been adhering to logic. Logic would not be a limitation for an omnipotent being. Were an omnipotent being to exist, all things, including logic, would be contingent upon them.
They would not be contingent upon anything. When something is said to be contingent upon something else, it refers to dependency. The existence of water, for example, is contingent upon the existence of both hydrogen and oxygen. It is simple to conceive of a universe where only hydrogen exists, and in such a universe, water, being contingent upon both, could not exist.
Omnipotence paradox - RationalWiki
So, when a being such as God is said to be omnipotent, what that means in its most fundamental implications is that God consists of the very outermost circle on a Venn diagram of contingencies I debated over whether another type of diagram, such as a flowchart, would better illustrate the relationships involved, but I figured that this would suffice for getting the basic concepts across.
Everything else could theoretically cease to exist, and it would not affect God, while God, having everything else contingent upon them, is required for the existence of anything else. So, when the question regarding an omnipotent being appears in the form, "Can an omnipotent being do 'x'?
And, so, yes, an omnipotent being can in fact create a rock so heavy that they cannot lift it. The idea is grounded in Plato 's oft-overlooked definition of being as "power": Power is influence, and perfect power is perfect influence … power must be exercised upon something, at least if by power we mean influence, control; but the something controlled cannot be absolutely inert, since the merely passive, that which has no active tendency of its own, is nothing; yet if the something acted upon is itself partly active, then there must be some resistance, however slight, to the "absolute" power, and how can power which is resisted be absolute?
If a being exists, then it must have some active tendency. If beings have some active tendency, then they have some power to resist God. If beings have the power to resist God, then God does not have absolute power. Thus, if God does not have absolute power, God must therefore embody some of the characteristics of power, and some of the characteristics of persuasion.
Process theology holds that God's persuasive power results from the integration between his two natures within himself: This view is known as "dipolar theism. Hartshorne proceeded within the context of the theological system known as process theology. The most popular works espousing this line of thinking outside the Christian tradition are from Harold Kushner in Judaism.
In the King James version of the Bibleas well as several other versions, in Revelation Nevertheless, much of the narrative of the Old Testament describes God as interacting with creation primarily through persuasion, and only occasionally through force. A primary New Testament text used to assert the limit of God's power is Paul 's assertion that God cannot tell a lie Titus 1: Thus, it is argued, there is no strong scriptural reason to adhere to omnipotence, and the adoption of the doctrine is merely a result of the synthesis of Hellenic philosophy and early Christian thought.
Rejection of an Omnipotent God Atheists do not exclude "intrinsically impossible" things, mentioned above, from the notion of omnipotence. They say that omnipotence always contains them, thus being paradoxical.
Why Free Will, Prayer and an Omnipotent God Are Mutually Exclusive
They utilize this paradox of omnipotence to argue against the existence of an omnipotent God. They say, for example, that an omnipotent God, by definition, should be able to make a squire circle, but that it is, in reality, impossible for a squire circle to be made.
They argue, therefore, that such a God does not exist. They have developed another, more intricate argument, by posing a question: Can God create a rock so heavy that he cannot lift it? The answer should be either in the affirmative or in the negative. If in the affirmative, God is not omnipotent since he cannot lift the rock.
Quote by C.S. Lewis: “His Omnipotence means power to do all that is i”
If in the negative, God is not omnipotent again since he cannot create such a rock. Either alternative forces the conclusion that God is not omnipotent. But, if God exists, he is omnipotent. Consequently, God does not exist. To this position, all the other theories are inadequate. The absolutist theory of Descartes makes too sharp a distinction between God and the world. Even the scholastic position basically does the same thing because it believes that God is incapable of doing creaturely acts such as walking and sitting.
Process theology is unacceptable because it denies omnipotence. Needless to say, atheism, too, is unacceptable. But, even Polkinghorne's position seems to many critics to have a problem.
In this refutation, it is claimed that such a being is unlikely to make that move. Hence they could create a stone so heavy that they could not lift it; they just wouldn't. The problem here is that the question then becomes "could the being complete the sequence of creating a stone too heavy for it to lift and then lifting it?
And that's not omnipotent by a longshot. Christians do have a kind of answer to the Rock question by bringing in the concept of existing as two beings at the same time via their claim that Jesus Christ of Nazareth is God You can circumvent this by adding "without existing as two beings at the same time" but it is not entirely fair to keep changing the question just to get around their pesky answers.
Contradiction in the paradox itself[ edit ] If the paradox is reworded slightly to the common variant of "what happens when an unstoppable force meets an unmovable object? Namely, that if there is an unstoppable force, then there is no unmovable object that could be met by it, as if there was such an unmovable object, there could be no unstoppable force.
The two are therefore mutually exclusive in existence, and it is a logical contradiction for both to exist at the same time. However, accepting this contradiction in relation to God is difficult, as the theistic omnipotence paradox revolves around the omnipotent being's ability to create.
The question is then raised: Can an omnipotent being break this logical dichotomy of unstoppable and unmovable, or is it unable to do so and thus not omnipotent? Within the bounds of logic[ edit ] One solution of the omnipotence paradox is to make God omnipotent but still bound within the laws of logic. So while God could happily create matter out of absolutely nothing, violating conservation of energy, suddenly reverse the orbit of the planet Earth, violating conservation of momentum, God would still have be bound within the laws of logic.
This is, of course, playing with the definition of omnipotence and it's generally up to the religion in question to determine the extent of the deity's omnipotence. This response if often said as something similar to, "God is able to do all that is able to be done. Liar's Paradox[ edit ] Parallels can be drawn to the liar's paradox -- Is the statement "This statement is False" True?
Most responses to the Liar Paradox can be applied to the Omnipotence paradox: