God's time

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God's time

#1

Post by Anonymous » Sun Mar 13, 2005 11:20 pm

Hi Iamb new to the forums. I wanted to ask a question, regarding this article:


http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ ... kalam.html


I wont go into how I think many of its premises are flawed. And how the argument destroys itself. I just have one question:

In God's time, his 'other' dimension of time.... Is this dimension part of God, or God part of this dimension.

what do you think?



Shalom

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#2

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Mar 14, 2005 2:36 am

If I understand correctly what you are asking, then I'd question the validity of the question posed for it assumes time is as eternal as God (which I do not accept). This conflicts with the position I've adopted, which I might add is the same position as William L. Craig. This is that time came in existence at the moment of creation, and God entered into time at such a moment in virtue of His real relations with the created order. And so there was no time without creation, meaning God was timeless.

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#3

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Mar 14, 2005 6:24 pm

Deafeye wrote:My question is based on the premise that God exists in at least 2 dimensions of time. One of them being ours and some other dimension of time, outside the Universe. The other dimension God is part of must be dependent of God, and thus part of God for God to make sense.

To atheists, being timeless is as being non-existent. To them, a God without time cannot do anything, because if He doesn't exist in our dimension of time, then He doens't really exist. Also, if God has no time, they believe he cannot think, because it requires time for thinking processes to God on.

Of course there are some obvious and serious problems with this thinking, but it is their thinking.


Do i need to clear anything up?



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#4

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Mar 14, 2005 6:26 pm

Mastermind wrote:I think the definition of time has become ridiculous in the last hundred years or so. Here's my take on time:

Two types of time:

1: Local time. This is the time of einstein, a sort of variable that determines the rate at which events occur. That variable would be different within a fast space ship than it would be on earth, and is affected by gravity and velocity. This is the time that is commonly believed to be one dimension. I disagree with that. If it is one dimension, then there is no free will. I believe our own time needs to have at least two dimensions to make free will possible. This cannot be verified. There is no experiment that can be made to see how many dimensions time travels in. I don't even think time itself is a dimension, but rather a currently undetectable wave that resides either in other physical dimensions or even within our own. A counter-wave could possibly reverse it and permit God to travel back and forth.

2: Universal time, or the Timeline. This is not a physical property, this is a concept derived from logic. God created Local time. Universal time is an inherent part of logic. Since God has always existed, never changed and is capable of infinite logic, then the Universal time must have be a part of God. What this basically states is that once something happened, it is considered a part of the past. The reversal of local time will not change that. For example, a string of events that is reversed at one point would look something like this:
>12345\ - time runs its normal course
............| -course of local time is reversed
<12345/ - time starts running backwards

In universal time(which is imaginary), the sequence would look like this:
1234554321

By all measurable physical properties, Local time will be seen by an observer, but universal time will be what actually happened, as God knows things DID happen before he reversed them.

This is of course, just a draft of my theory. Feel free to criticize, or ask questions, as I'm not sure if I explained it properly.

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#5

Post by Kurieuo » Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:39 pm

Deafeye wrote:My question is based on the premise that God exists in at least 2 dimensions of time. One of them being ours and some other dimension of time, outside the Universe. The other dimension God is part of must be dependent of God, and thus part of God for God to make sense.
Why posit that God exists in at least two time dimensions—is it because many Atheists have a distaste for the timeless position? I don't see this as much reason to take up God existing in at least two dimensions of time. As whether or not they like a timeless view of God, such has no impact upon its validity. Notably you appear to be playing their game to develop something they "like" more? But such gives them an advantage (as you're playing their game), and secondly my experience is that they will disagree with "anything" that makes sense of Theism. So you'll just end up frustrated after going on a wild goose chase trying to find a solution that they will never accept. ;) It's better just to go with an explanation that makes the most logical sense, and then stick with it.

Additionally, In my experiences I haven't actually found any "Atheist" who has been familiar with philosophies surrounding time enough to be able to dig deeply into discussions about it. Therefore, if you have a good handle on this topic, most of what you write will likely be ignored as it will simply go right over their heads. Unless of course your discussion is with a more seasoned Atheist, who has developed his own philosophy about time.
Deafeye wrote:To atheists, being timeless is as being non-existent.

To them, a God without time cannot do anything, because if He doesn't exist in our dimension of time, then He doens't really exist. Also, if God has no time, they believe he cannot think, because it requires time for thinking processes to God on.
Perhaps you accept their response, that is, you also don't see how God could exist if He is timeless? Yet, positing a second time that God is "within" would as you probably know fall into the problem of an infinite regress. Now if time existed "within" God, then He would still actually be "timeless" as God wouldn't be "bound" by time. While this might help someone to comprehend how God could actually be alive (rather than static in timelessness), I don't necessarily see that one needs to take this position. Time may not be a property of God and I don't see that this causes any problem for God's existence.

Consider also that a thought is a chemical process in our brain (this does not necessarily conflict with the concept of our "soul"), chemical processes are physical, God is not physical, therefore God does not think, at least not in the same sense we do. Rather His "thoughts" are eternal, meaning they exist as long as His existence. God's choice to create our universe was an eternal choice He always had. God did not just decide to create the world from within eternity, such a decision was as eternal as He is. Saying God is timeless doesn't take away anything from God, it just shows God to be totally complete in every way.

Anyway, hope this helped.

Kurieuo
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#6

Post by Poetic_Soul » Tue Mar 15, 2005 9:18 am

Time, space and dimentions are all in a box. We just so happen to live in that box. God just so happens to live outside the box, where time, space and dimension do not restrict Gods ability to move. The only reason God permits himself to be restricted to space, time and dimentions is when he becomes personal and reveals himself to us. And even that is allowed by himself alone. With God being outside of the box, He becomes aware of the past, the present and the future. Seeing a veiw beyond the 3 dimentional world that we live in.

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#7

Post by Mastermind » Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:01 pm

to see the future means it is predetermined. There is no way around it.

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#8

Post by Dan » Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:40 pm

Mastermind wrote:to see the future means it is predetermined. There is no way around it.
There IS a way around it and it's what I believe.

I don't think God can "see" the future literally, as in the future has already happened for him because that would mean we're already with God! I think the notion of time as a dimension is just an abstraction that makes it easier to work with in science.

The way I think of it is this way : God is infinitely intelligent, therefore He can process an infinite amount of information in an instant. God is also infinitely knowledgable, He knows EVERYTHING about our universe that happened and everything that is happening in the present. This is because God is above the universe, He can look into it and see everything, He is exempt from Heisenburg's Uncertainty Principle, He can know everything while we can't.

Since God can process an infinite amount of information in an instant and since He knows everything about our universe (including how we think, what our behavior is, what we're disposed to do, and all that; God knows more about us than we do!), which is only a finite (albeit massive) amount of information, God can predict the future with perfect accuracy! He knows the future because He is intelligent enough to be able to do so. He can see every branch of possible "future", what would happen if he intervened that is, because that's the only outside interference in history.

In conclusion, God knows the future because God can predict the future because God knows everything and can process the information to know what the next moment in time will bring. He shapes history through his actions because that's the only thing that can alter the course that we will all take.

Some might say this means we don't have free will, however we still can make our own choices. God knows what our will is, He knows us down to every single passing thought, He knows everything there is to know about us and this means He knows what we will do, He does not limit our actions to what He wants, He simply knows what our actions will be in any given scenario.

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#9

Post by Joel Freeman » Thu Mar 17, 2005 9:00 pm

Dan wrote:I don't think God can "see" the future literally
I disagree. I really believe that an ALL POWERFUL God could see the future if he wanted to, and not just predict it. The way you explained it makes sense, but a prediction does not garuntee perfect accuracy. If He did predict with perfect accuracy and knowing that He's 100% correct then it's not a prediction, it's KNOWING what's going to happen.

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#10

Post by Kurieuo » Thu Mar 17, 2005 9:37 pm

I think the best thing to say is that omniscience is simply a part of God's nature. That is, it's not necessarily that He sees as one might look at a film reel, or that He accurately "predicts" the future as in He works out what will be, rather He just knows within Himself because omniscience is a quality that is a part of who He is.

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#11

Post by RGeeB » Fri Mar 18, 2005 2:20 am

Psalm 90:2, Ephesians 2:10

Though I'm not convinced this is entirely true, I'm inclined to think of God's time like this:
God is not outside of time, rather, time is contained in God. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. He cannot jump about to future and past as some have suggested. He cannot undo what has already happened. He experiences it linearly, just like we do. Also, 10 minutes spent in heaven or hell is the same as 10 minutes on earth. (Its how long it seems to us that may be different).

With all of our lifetime experiences, study of history and imagination, we can only project our mind to a distant past. Now, imagine a perfect comprehension of the term beginning - that is what we call eternity. This same concept can be applied to the future. Since, God was there in the beginning and will be there in the end (in our terms), hence statements such as Psalm 90:2 are the closest we can get to describing God's time.

The question regarding God's foreknowledge. Lets say that with my immense wisdom I can predict that if I leave a cup of milk to boil in a microwave, it will boil over in 4 minutes. Now multiply that wisdom immensely and we can begin to understand how God can predict the future with accurate time periods. They have not happened, however God's virtual simulation is 100 percent accurate. This is one way the concepts of God 'repenting' in times of the flood and Jonah and Nineveh and the visions of John in Revelation, can be reconciled.
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#12

Post by AttentionKMartShoppers » Sat Mar 19, 2005 2:20 pm

Time is a physical property, though, so in hell and heaven, spiritual realms, is there time? I don't think so. That's why the joke where God's birthday cake goes off into the distance loaded with candles is misleading.
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He occasionally stumbled over the truth, but hastily picked himself up and hurried on as if nothing had happened.
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God's time as well as heaven/hell

#13

Post by madscientist » Sat Jun 24, 2006 7:36 am

AttentionKMartShoppers wrote:Time is a physical property, though, so in hell and heaven, spiritual realms, is there time? I don't think so. That's why the joke where God's birthday cake goes off into the distance loaded with candles is misleading.
Exactly... one thing that always bothers me. Does heaven/hell have a logical sequence? Eg we come there, get to know each other, do this, do this , do this and some "time" has gone. And after "time", we remember what will have happened, and will have memories of what happened etc. But again this seems illogical. As "time" would go on we would have more and more memories etc and does this make sense? Probably no. But God knows...! Then it could mean heaven/hell is tedious - eg that we dont do anything, just feel joy, extreme joy for a reason we may not know... (or suffering in hell). But is this what heaven is really about? Maybe hell but not heaven. (Well at least what i thinka bout it!)

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#14

Post by non-affiliated » Thu Sep 28, 2006 11:23 pm

Kurieuo wrote:If I understand correctly what you are asking, then I'd question the validity of the question posed for it assumes time is as eternal as God (which I do not accept). This conflicts with the position I've adopted, which I might add is the same position as William L. Craig. This is that time came in existence at the moment of creation, and God entered into time at such a moment in virtue of His real relations with the created order. And so there was no time without creation, meaning God was timeless.

Kurieuo.
Not sure how my thoughts stand on this but:

When God entered in to time he became temporal then can we say that there was a "before" creation? And if this is the case then wouldn't that be considered a point in time? Also, by saying god "was" timeless doesn't this indicate that there was a period where God was timeless? Doesn't that sort of contradict itself?

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#15

Post by Kurieuo » Fri Sep 29, 2006 12:30 am

non-affiliated wrote:
Kurieuo wrote:If I understand correctly what you are asking, then I'd question the validity of the question posed for it assumes time is as eternal as God (which I do not accept). This conflicts with the position I've adopted, which I might add is the same position as William L. Craig. This is that time came in existence at the moment of creation, and God entered into time at such a moment in virtue of His real relations with the created order. And so there was no time without creation, meaning God was timeless.

Kurieuo.
Not sure how my thoughts stand on this but:

When God entered in to time he became temporal then can we say that there was a "before" creation?
Yes. When God first created, then logically, God existing without creation causally preceeds God existing with His creation.

In stating that God was timeless, then became temporal, it is acknowledging that there was a state when God really was without our temporal universe, and now a state where God really is with us in our temporal universe. I believe God now has to endure through time the same as the rest of us.
non-affil wrote:And if this is the case then wouldn't that be considered a point in time? Also, by saying god "was" timeless doesn't this indicate that there was a period where God was timeless? Doesn't that sort of contradict itself?
Yes, but only by looking backward. On a tensed theory of time, retrocausation (that is, the effect of a cause, causing something to exist before the effect itself existed) is logically impossible. For example, imagine God existing without creation in a timeless (and therefore changeless) state. There is no causality going on, and God is fully contained and whole within Himself. Now as eternal as God is, God had the eternal desire to create and does so thereby bringing about our temporal universe and by virtue of His real relations with His creation He enters into time with it. Is it not now a bit odd that once time comes into being, time now exists before it existed (when in fact it did not)? I believe such is not only odd, but illogical and a metaphysical impossibility. It is only an illusion like that of Zeno's paradox, which we know from experience is false:
For every step I take forward before I do so I must make half of that distance. I am now at the half point between making a step and making a step. Before I can make the step I must go half way between the half way point and the finish. Before I can make the next step I must go half way between the 3/4 step and the finish. Therefore motion is impossible since we are infinitely approaching it but never making it. (http://allphilosophy.com/topic/show/290)


Bill Craig provides a good explanation in his book 'God, Time and Eternity':
To claim that time would exist without the universe in virtue of the beginning of the world seems to postulate a sort of backward causation: The occurence of the first event causes time to exist not only with the event but also before it. But on a tensed theory of time, such retrocausation is metaphysically impossible, for it amounts to something's being caused by nothing, since at the time of the effect the retro-cause is no sense exists.

The impression that God without creation is timeless can be reinforced by a thought experiment. Imagine God existing changelessly alone in a possible world in which He refrains from creation. In such a world, God is reasonably conceived to be timeless. But God, actually existing alone without creation, is no different than He would be in such a possible world, even though in the actual world He becomes temporal by creating. Apart from backward causation, there seems to be nothing that would produce a time prior to the moment of creation.
Now given we now have foundations for discarding the illusory idea that time exists before time as a consequence of time's coming into existence, what now of God's timelessness? How is it to be conceived? I find Craig's analogy to the singularity in physical time particularly enlightening:
The initial Big Bang singularity is not considered to be part of time, but to constitute a boundary to time. Nevertheless, it is causally connected to the universe. In an analogous way, perhaps we could say that God's timeless eternity is, as it were, a boundary of time which is causally, but not temporally, prior to the origin of the universe.
Lots of deep stuff to chew on here. Hope this helps with your own thoughts on the matter of God's relationship to time.

Kurieuo
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