Deism Versus Theism

2-7 in the Scientific Arena of the 20th Century

The more science progresses, the more Theism triumphs over Deism. Deists might consider revising their strategy.


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Like all other discoveries, those of the 20th century contributed to our understanding of the behavior of matter. Though unlike all other discoveries, some of them defined strict limits to the reach of human knowledge. They did this for the first time in the history of science, whence they represent an absolute unicum:

(i) Lemaitre’s cosmological discovery radically forbade any inquiry into what happened before the Big Bang.
(ii) John Bell’s inequalities definitively ended all hopes of finding the cause of a quantum event within material reality.
(iii) Gödel’s incompleteness theorem shattered the classical belief that a single, unique, and consistent axiomatic system exists, from which all truth can be derived by formal deduction.

Apparently, the more our scientific knowledge progresses, the more we are confronted with intrinsic limits of human understanding and influence. The 19th century was still dominated by scientists (like David Hilbert) and philosophers (like Emmanuel Kant), who constructed a magnificent world view on the supposition that nothing limited human understanding. Such a position is typical of Deism: the belief that God once created a world, the fate of which He completely leaves to man. Radically opposite to this position is Islam: the belief that God created a world in which God dominates as absolutely as He does arbitrarily. Halfway these two extremes is classical Theism, or the belief that God created a world in which God dominates absolutely, though not arbitrarily. In Theism, God willingly restricts his own actuation within our material world, with the sole purpose of granting human beings a proper context in which they can actuate freely and rationally. For sure, there are more positions than only these three, but they hardly make sense. Atheism is no doubt the silliest of them all: I know for sure that God does not exist, but I regret I have no clue as to the question why I exist ─ the only thing I know about that, is that I was not consulted prior to my existence, with regard to whether I would like to exist.

The above-mentioned discoveries on the fields of cosmology, quantum mechanics, and mathematics, make a strong case in favor of Theism. The author additionally discusses discoveries on six other scientific disciplines. He concludes that in two cases out of nine, Theism defeats both Islam and Deism.


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