The atheist is not raising some general requirement for good explanations, he is pointing out the self-defeat in this theistic explanation. You can trace every scientific explanation back to the point where we don’t know. See Mortimer Adler’s version of this Leibnizian Cosmological argument: this tendency to ask “Who created god?
I’ve had the exact same thought, but not in such detail. One day I thought, “Well, if we accept the explanation of why things fall down as ‘gravity’, what explains gravity? Same thing with the God explanation, just in fewer steps. No, the argument is that everything either has a cause for its existence, or exists by the necessity of its own nature. The universe, being only one of an infinity of possible universes, need never have existed at all and is thus contingent and does not exist by the necessity of its own nature. ” be explained by how bad the explanation (god) is?
I want to kill one of atheism’s most popular and resilient retorts.
One of atheism’s sacred cows is the “Who designed the designer? Here’s how it works: THEIST: “There is so much complexity in the world, it must have been designed by an Intelligent Designer.
Even for an infinite intellect, regresses of such explanations must end.
I think we should take into account the nature of the explanation.
the problem with offering “God did it” as an explanation.
Again the reasons are not practical, such as the finiteness of our faculties, but logic or conceptual, entailed by the very notions of explanations involved.
According to this argument, science merely transfers our puzzlement from one phenomenon to another… we don’t simply replace one phenomenon with another.
We replace one phenomenon with a Richard Dawkins, for instance, writes that to explain the machinery of life “by invoking a supernatural Designer is to explain precisely nothing.” Why?
Or consider atheist philosopher of science Michael Friedman.
Notice that he assumes our explanations may not themselves be explained, but that explanations succeed in increasing our understanding of the world: [Consider] the old argument that science is incapable of explaining anything because the basic phenomena to which others are reduced are themselves neither explained nor understood.
We would need to have an explanation of the explanation, and an explanation of the explanation of the explanation, and an explanation of the explanation of the explanation of the explanation… And thus, we would never be able to explain Moreover, this is not how science works. In order to explain certain quantum phenomena, scientists have posited the existence of dozens of invisible particles with very particular properties that yield predictable results.