Dawkins: "Who made God?"
In response to my previous post, Victor Reppert criticizes Dawkins' answer to the Cosmological Argument this way:
Now, I think there is further discussion which might develop the "Who made God" response to more sophisticated version of the Cosmological Arguments, but a popular kind of response to arguments like Aquinas's and Craig's, sometimes given in intro philosophy classes, makes it seem as if they somehow didn't think to ask the question "Who made God," a question asked by most grade school children.Now one thing I should point out right away is the fact that Dawkins is not a philosopher, but more importantly, his target audience was not philosophers. He was addressing real people who may have been brought up in a religious environment, hearing the common arguments for God's existence.
Secondly, this "Who made God" question was not his response to cosmological arguments. Actually in response to teleological arguments, he said (in part):
The creationist misappropriation of the argument from improbability always takes the same general form, and it doesn't make any difference… [if called] 'intelligent design' (ID). Some observed phenomenon—often a living creature or one of its more complex organs, but it could be anything from a molecule up to the universe itself—is correctly extolled as statistically improbable. Sometimes the language of information theory is used: the Darwinian is challenged to explain the source all the information in living matter, in the technical sense of information content as a measure of improbability or 'surprise value'… However statistically improbable the entity you seek to explain by invoking a designer, the designer himself has got to be at least as improbable. God is the Ultimate Boeing 747.Somehow, this statement doesn't exactly sound like the unlearned school child that Victor makes Dawkins out to be. It also makes me seriously question whether Victor actually read the book of which he is so critical, given that he doesn't even know which theistic argument Dawkins is responding to.
…The whole argument turns on the familiar question 'Who made God?'… A designer God cannot be used to explain organized complexity because any God capable of designing anything would have to be complex enough to demand the same kind of explanation in his own right. God presents an infinite regress from which he cannot help us to escape. This argument… demonstrates that God, though not technically disprovable, is very very improbable indeed.
So how does Dawkins actually address the cosmological argument?
All three of these arguments rely upon the idea of a regress and invoke God to terminate it. They make the entirely unwarranted assumption that God himself is immune to the regress. Even if we allow the dubious luxury of arbitrarily conjuring up a terminator to an infinite regress and giving it a name, simply because we need one, there is absolutely no reason to endow that terminator with any of the properties normally ascribed to God: omnipotence, omniscience, goodness, creativity of design, to say nothing of such human attributes as listening to prayers, forgiving sins and reading innermost thoughts.And despite Craig's contention that this is a poor response to the Kalam argument, it is not a response to the Kalam argument at all. This does, however, address Aquinas' cosmological argument. And I think this response deserves serious consideration by philosophers, since it gets to one of the biggest flaws in Aquinas' arguments: given that there is some kind of transcendent entity that is the ultimate cause of the big bang, what reason is there to believe that this entity is God? Why couldn't it be, for example, a greater natural cosmological entity (such as a multiverse)? There is absolutely no logical basis to assume that it must be God (or some kind of entity that has godly attributes), other than unwarranted theological assumptions.
Now, I understand that theists reject the idea of a multiverse. They even try to claim that it is unscientific.
Not to be dismayed by the facts, atheists have invented some metaphysical "science" that attempts to explain away the existence of God. Hence, most atheistic cosmologists believe that we see only the visible part of a much larger "multiverse" that randomly spews out universes with different physical parameters. Since there is no evidence supporting this idea (nor can there be, according to the laws of the universe), it is really just a substitute "god" for atheists.Let me just say that this statement reflects a profound ignorance of cosmological science and theoretical physics. The reality is that mankind has invented God as a substitute for science. And as our scientific knowledge continues to expand, God fades into the background.
In answer to the school child's question of who made God: we did.