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article imageOp-Ed: A scientific view of the God question

By Scott Sawitz     Feb 11, 2014 in World
A debate is raging among religious and secular people alike over the question: If the universe and the human body are indeed "designed," does that not prove a creator? One metaphysicist thinks it does, but not like you think.
The general secular scientific community says “no design,” ergo no (supernatural) designer. The polar-opposite Creationist community says, “yes design,” ergo a (supernatural) Creator.
Enter metaphysicist and conceptual theorist David Birnbaum who argues: there is design, but the designer is in league with the equations of physics and maths. You cannot get more pro-science than that.
However, Birnbaum then takes matters to an interesting universality: this eternal overarching dynamic of “infinite potential” embodied in the designer, may or may not evolve into the classic “God.”
Meaning, hitherto, the entrenched atheistic academic community has adamantly presented a united front coming down squarely and aggressively against considering any design in nature, presumably to short-circuit any argument for Creationism. However, their zealousness in challenging design is predicated upon a false premise.
Birnbaum shows that, contrary to the popular-wisdom assumption, design is not only scientific, it is radically more scientific than the random chaos championed by the "entrenched orthodoxy" of the academic hierarchy.
To the randomness/atheist advocates, all is random and meaningless. Birnbaum feels that history will not be overly kind to their unstructured and scientifically dubious Theory of No Theory.
Albert Einstein, in his book The World As I See It, stated that the harmony of natural law "reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection."
In a letter to a child who asked if scientists pray, Einstein wrote, “Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe – a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.”
The classic questions of metaphysics have remained unanswered for millennia: Is there an eternal dynamic? What was the catalyst for the cosmos? Why does anything exist? How/why did life emerge? What is our purpose? To these, new scientific questions have been added: What ignited the Big Bang? What is the essence and drive of evolution? What was the catalyst for emotion and consciousness? Birnbaum daringly offers an elegant simultaneous solution (to all of the above) which has tantalized the world.
Metaphysics was the discipline of the classic Greeks: Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. But they were not able to come up with convincing answers which would stand the test of time; nor were the great Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Eastern or secular philosophers able to do so. So since civilization began 7,000 years ago, these questions — both the old and the new — have hitherto remained unanswered.
The field of metaphysics almost disappeared from the radar as a formal discipline subsequent to the publication of Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza’s treatise Ethics in 1687. In the ensuing 300-plus years, no one has put forward a comprehensive which has gained sustained traction and a significant academic foothold — until Messr. Birnbaum’s Summa Metaphysica alighted center stage in 2012-2013.
David Birnbaum began looking at this ultimate puzzle as a 10-year-old in 1960. Poking-around and consulting whatever ‘sources of knowledge’ he could gently harass, Birnbaum focused on three key fields which he was directly exposed to: religion, metaphysics and astrophysics.
He was acutely aware of the parallel shortcoming in all three for explaining cosmic origins. He first came up with his solution in 1982 and formalized his theory in the 1988 volume I of his to-be three volume treatise.
Birnbaum employed a somewhat unique approach to unraveling the inter-related big questions. He made several key assumptions, which were to prove crucial. He felt that the solution was (a) probably not only "hiding in plain sight," but that it was also (b) relatively simple, and (c) infinite.
Regarding (a), his reasoning was that a dynamic powerful-enough to extricate reality from the cosmic void, was probably a pervasive theme — and hence, pretty much in full view. Regarding (b), his reasoning was that only a ’simple’ dynamic could be eternal, and as regards (c), his reasoning was that only an infinite concept could get us from infinity to the present.
Meaning, that the key to the cosmic code was not some obscure mathematical formula. And meaning that as a consequence he could deal with the code-breaking part-time, sort-of as a hobby. He conjectured that the correct solution to any one problem, should be the solution to at least several of the other key big questions. Thus, the proof that he had hit upon the correct "solution" would not lie in abstruse physics, but rather in its apparent simultaneity.
Birnbaum promotes an original concept as the key to understanding the cosmos. His concept of “infinite potential” as the eternal cosmic force, suggests that this dynamic worked its way forward over the eons and ignited our universe, which ultimately led to the materialization of humans.
Developed in the three volume Summa Metaphysica, this theory can be explained quite succinctly as well: potential drives the universe. Infinite quest for potential is the “prime mover” of life; it lies where science, philosophy and spirituality meet. Flexible enough to include all typologies of mankind — religious, spiritual and secular man. Infinite potential can be defined differently by each:
For religious man, it is the core of classic “God”.
For spiritual man, it is the spirit and drive of the cosmic order.
For secular man, it is the cosmic mechanism.
Although his theory can be simply stated in one word “Potential,” Birnnbaum crafted Summa Metaphysica to attempt to “get his arms around” an infinite universe — and the key metaphysics problems therein. The treatise has been used as a course text at universities worldwide including UCLA, Brandeis and Hebrew University (Jerusalem). Birnbaum’s philosophical work was the subject of a 4-day international academic conference in April 2012 at Bard College in Upstate NY, which ultimately ignited a global storm.
But despite that, after 7,000 years of both formal and informal discussion and debate on these issues, there is no more compelling integrated theory on the global chessboard.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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