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That field, not our current subject, is merely an area for categorisation at this time. In order, we merely assert this now: that at one time there were on this earth no animals, no plants, no men. There was matter at the time we envisage. In fact, even if you found some esoteric sect of your own, which should deny that matter existed on earth before men and animals and plants did so, it makes no real difference. It is however simpler to the imagination to consider simply matter; and then to account for it.
I knew an atheist doctor - possibly at times at least he was an agnostic. In such cases, a sort of vacillation may occur, people of this sort being sometimes unstable in their thinking as one indeed one would expect, after evidential review of the setting of our race, and indeed after applying the analysis of the Bible, to which we shall at the proper procedural moment, be looking. Staying at the home of this doctor, I was in the interesting situation that his wife, also a medical doctor, was a professing Christian.
This gentleman loved scientific method, it seemed. In this he did not err (assuming he could carefully see it in its place in the scheme of things).
He would seek to reason with me to prove this or that (without success in general, because equally in general he sought to prove the unprovable, things contrary to fact, to demonstrability). Enough.. he tried to prove.
So we would consider the way of it. In general, by what means might one then proceed, by what steps scientifically ? Of course one first examines the data with precision and care: as able, controlling some features where relevant - indeed all known controllable features, while varying this or that element of the situation, to see the specific result, and so on. One may first be attracted by some semblance of order in Nature; and tabulate, check, counter-check; again control, vary, collect data; construe; theorise; apply the theory and so verify it, or otherwise; and then if necessary, qualify one's hypothesis. Gradually one integrates the new venture of thought with other theories or hypotheses or laws. This may breed new vistas, whole new constructions; for other theories may have been simplistic. But one pursues inexorably with method. Of course one can specialise in different phases of it.
Now this is merely one dynamic way of dealing with data to get clear results; it is an assaying task combined with a theorising task and a testing task. But back of it all - and this is the crux that is general beyond whatever logical facet applies to the research in view, whether it be empirical conceptual or co-ordinating - in general, one is simply saying that nothing happens for nothing. Everything happens for a reason. There is a cause, and an effect. There is a preliminary and a consequent. There is nothing which comes from nothing; nothing cannot create anything; and whatever is the preceding set of circumstances and forces and objects and so on, must be sufficient at the causative level to conduce or constrain or process things to the next condition.
If you have a rare disease the doctors may shake their heads and say: "Alas, it is incurable." "Why ?" You ask. "Ah because we do not know the cause! It is unknown to medical science. We have not traced the specific origin and so cannot do more than soothe you. It must take its course until we have identified the cause and so can find what will stop or stifle it. Until then, the laws of your body and the nature of the attacker can lead to one foreseeable result: your early death!" You appreciate their thoughtfulness for telling you; and may then take time to reflect on their excellent insight into scientific method. They know: they work always on the hypothesis that there is a cause. It is simply a question of identifying it. So you may breathe more evenly and meditate on the marvels of modern science, that it knows why it does not know. At least superficially.
"They are insufficient; and we need to be sure, to find what is sufficient. Why, we know something of their qualities, and we cannot even glean how they could produce these (empirical) results; these additional symptoms fall outside, even contradict our knowledge of the hypothesised causative agents (the bacteria and the virus). There must then be another cause of your condition, something sufficient to produce these actual, and in this case spectacular results."
This very case exposes the principle of sufficient causation, something we work with normally every day.
Now, to revert to our agnostic-atheistic doctor acquaintance and his thoughts, his thinking on man and the universe: apart from trying to escape in some such way as already anticipated and rejected earlier (*1) - by denying the reason with which he reasoned, then trying to reason unreasonably with reason against the results of reason - he had no escape. Back of all, there had to be something. It had to be sufficient for anything to have come from it, anything of the dimension in fact apparent in all that is. If you start from nothing, then it has no present or past or future. But there had to be a future, because we are, and we are now here, and that is future for any past point. There could never have been nothing; for you see something in the future is a future for that past, and anything with a future is not nothing: in so far as its potentiality of future is an attribute, something better and other than... nothing. There has to have been: something always for anything ever. It is as simple as that. And that something must be sufficient... for mind, matter and spirit or will, as exhibited earlier.
Thus if you have three cents and put them in some account for a few hundred days, you may have a few more by interest. But by interest you will not have a million dollars. No, 3 cents in the savings bank is not a sufficient background for that in such a time to cause or pile up or account for a million dollars: you need something more than that. You need not only a reason for it; you need a big enough one, a strong enough one, a sufficient one. You need an accounting for it to find the cause; and that must be not just any cause, we see: but a sufficient cause. Again, it is as simple as that.
Well it is not a mere million dollars we are thinking about now; it is all matter. How shall we account for it and what sufficient reason can we ascribe for its existence?
The best mortal critic is not going to be able to produce so wonderful a book on a poor piece of art. But give even a modest critic a great work of genius to criticise, to evaluate and you may well have wonderful things to hear.
Matter is first of all orderly. You hear about the difficulty of detecting the exact location of a particle of matter; because our ways of measuring things are large relative to the particles, those tiny particles which we begin to find; and you may hear that we really cannot tell just where some of these tiny things are because when we try to measure, our measuring methods interfere with the tiny particles in their courses, and deflect them, so that in trying to find where one is, we move it: so that it is not there any more.
It is truly amazing that some people allow this simple and quite obvious fact to mislead them. Things are still quite definite. It is just that our definite methods of measuring have a definite effect on a definite particle (*2), so that it is at present hard to tell where it would have been if we had not tried to find out.
However, one mentions this sort of simplicity just to prevent any vain argument arising from misunderstanding. Things are definite. Sometimes we find it hard to get down to their minute level and have to measure them in bulk; but the principles applicable, where we can measure, are quite definite. We find out more and more and sometimes are baulked in efforts to gain the precision needed, and the delicacy; but we constantly find that there is a reason for everything, even for not being able to measure all that we might like (*2); and that this matter of grounds for things carefully perceived and noted, analysed and considered, is the whole principle on which science works. Without this, it is nothing; and through this principle it is, that it has any importance.
But what is the reason for matter ? That is the Question.
It is a matter of form and order and reasonable grounds, and reactions repeatable and assessable in principle, by ever more sophisticated theories; these sometimes foundering in new dimensions and depths, as we seek to assess these things. Rising above this, men imagine that all is known; but ever deepening, widening, they find yet more... order, more reasons for more things to, happen in and with this amazingly complicated and specifically orderly thing we call matter.
Well then, what is the cause of order, or law, of form, of rationality in the actions of matter: what brings on the force and play of realities subject to reasonable relations and activities, in matter ? What is a source - the very minimal one - for law and order such as we find ?
What is the reason for all this, which accounts for it being in existence ?
Some say chance. That is, they deem a lack of order and reason and form and rationality as a sufficient reason for its presence. That is like saying poverty is the real cause of wealth; ignorance of honors in college; and bodily feebleness is the source of athletic gold medals in the Olympic Games. To say that such an escape is unscientific, is to compliment this type of woolly substitution of words for thought. It is a matter of postulating the precise opposite of something, in 'accounting' for it. But we are here to reason, not to state our grounds of faith in unreason. We saw that at the first (*1), and we continue to see how important it is.
To postulate disorder as the reason for order, disorganisation as the basis of organisation, lawlessness as the ground of law is mere word play, with opposites, evacuated of thought, like a child trying to be impish or succeeding in being astonishingly obtuse.
Some say nothing is the reason and ground of what we have. But we have already considered why that is equally inadequate, and for a very similar reason. We will not repeat.
Some say, there is some force back of it all. That is a popular view. It is right - to a point. It is like saying: the athlete who wins a world record has some force behind him. This is true. But it still only begins to account for the result. So does a Cadillac have some force. But it does not win an athletic record. We have to think clearly, to be definite, to think in order, to be frank here the same as anywhere else. After all imagine the reaction of the athlete's coach if someone said that; and then went on to say, that it was a mere matter of engineering. Yes, the coach might reply, but of human engineering in a biological format, with a human personality with motives and principles and standards, as any good coach knows - and legs, by the way and lungs.
There is the matter of interface. There is the detail of how, by what means mechanisms, systems, and force are applied; how it is applied; why, where and the whole study of the situation. That has been omitted. Force, the power to impart acceleration to matter, is almost as inadequate as 'nothing'; for while it is something, it is mere trifling with the necessary ingredients, and no serious proposition as expressed.
So we may as well be honest; it is simply a matter of thinking with the same sort of care as we usually do. After all, just because we are dealing with the most important things, this is no reason to be sloppy in our thinking, or asleep in our minds; as though to be "religious" is the same as going to sleep. Quite the opposite: it is the ultimate way to life... in so far as we go to the source and the cause and seek the point of it all. Going to sleep is one (temporary if lazy) alternative.
What then is the sufficient cause of this order and rationality and so on, which we noted in matter ? We have looked at what it is not: and at what is an inadequate formulation of the answer. Now to the answer; testable in the usual way, by seeing if it actually accounts for the thing.
To get order then, you need a source of order. You need not mere order - (of what?) - but a ground for order. That is the state of question- Order is seen in what is ordered; but what makes it orderly ? Perhaps matter possesses a legislature ? or a brain ? or planning boards ? or does it have a mathematical faculty... ? No one has ever seen this; and none of matter's structure has ever revealed in this regard, more than law keeping functions and enduements. We draw a dead one, then, seeking the cause and source of the laws of matter, within matter. It is as simple once again as that.
So we must look somewhere else. The subject from which we are to draw the power to make and maintain this order, is not matter. It must be immaterial. But let us not hasten.
It must have order-creating power (nor is it merely order, but the order correlative to particular systems - just as is the case with your vacuum cleaner as an operative unit!)... otherwise, quite simply, that order could not be, so that it would not be. Yet it is!
Now you may reply: Well it may be that this something which made matter always had it made; that matter is eternal; and we will look at that again (pp. 28, 30 ff., 41 ff., 35 para 3, 31 para 2 infra). But you cannot logically say that this something (*3) did not need to act in terms of creating matter, for then matter would not be; for matter cannot produce what it has, what it enshrines; it rather simply exhibits and obeys its laws like 'perfect' members of a Class! Matter demands of us mutely that we find the cause, the source and origin of it (whether you think of this functionally, or in terms of time). Either, it might be claimed, something that is not matter, differently definable and having what matter lacks, always had matter there by an eternal decision which knew no beginning (and we have already noted that something always had to be operative); or else at some point, this something started matter off absolutely.
But let us, having reflected, go further.
What is clear is this: that matter is not in itself that something. Matter is derivative from it; and whatever the something is, it must be sufficient to have matter derivable from it. Since matter is not by nature what the something at least has to be, for matter to exist at all, matter is not that something.
Now since matter is merely derivative, it follows that it must not be always-there-by-nature; because this is true only of what has to be for anything to be, what we will call X (the something). Since matter is not a part of X-within-itself, and since X has to be self-accounting altogether to qualify as the answer to our search: therefore we have come to a compelling reason to designate matter non-eternal. Thus an eternal co-partner with God constitutes a part of a God+item system which requires (as before) its own creator, God: thus showing this case outside limits, not meeting our logical criteria.
Matter is temporal, a co-partner with serial time in a cohesive system: that entire series requires, in the essentially inter-active cyclical causation of our universe as a going concern, a non-serial cause of its constitution. Such is needed to institute it.
Put differently: A non-serial cause of matter's reactive and interactive systematics is needed, to allow its absolute institution - the integral totality of matter itself otherwise being uncaused. A non-processed, programmed, propelled source is needed for what has deployment but no power to deploy; and creation being the cause of this interactive system, its creator precedes it. Accordingly, matter is neither eternal by nature nor by existence: such things being true only of what is the self-sufficient ultimate, the source of derivation and the sufficiency for what is derived.
It is this self-accounting cause which is necessary always for anything ever. This X must be non-derivative always, exclusively and altogether, being incapable of co-ordination without derogation and contradiction, if the essential logical requisites are to be met, and the criteria noted accommodated. Thus the entire created, causal system of which time is a part and matter an element, needed initiation by X, who alone can satisfy the test of transcending all things, in all, so that they might be able to be, to exist and to operate in their derivative station. X shows itself to be what we seek and not merely a step on the way (for us), or along the road (from it)!
It is not matter; and matter is not it. On the contrary, the eternal One stands alone where eternity dwarfs even time, overshadowing equally matter, which alike is its creation.
But what is this logically necessary and logically prior One, this creator of chronology, this alone-eternal-by-nature X ? For shorthand we will here call it AEBNX. After all, that is shorter than something and we already know some definite things about it which are exhibited in the acronym: so we inscribe these in a suitably abbreviated form:
This (A)lone (E)ternal (B)y (N)ature.
What is it ? Well, we must pursue more facts (in the sense of what is attestable by refined reason) to their conclusions; which in our case will represent the minimum possible necessary preliminary grounds, without which such facts could not be.
You see matter was, and mind is; and both are; and the first we have construed for cause; and the second now awaits us. What can we find out about a sufficient cause for mind ? Well, what is it ? (I find that it is a virtual rule that in talking, it is well and even helpful to know what you are talking about - though it seems distinctly possible some people do not agree with me in this. Therefore, let us see what it is that mind is, so that we can talk helpfully about it.)
If matter indicates a systematic obedience or conformity to law, then mind shows a systematic ability to investigate, to analyse, to predict even on the basis of law. As to matter, it executes law; as to mind: it investigates law. It does more than this; but it does not do less. This intrinsic property of mind is not logically derivable from matter. To invent hypotheses in entirely new terms: this is for mind. Matter in the form of computers can indeed execute technological workings - in the form of the systems and adumbrated systems given it; but it cannot absolutely and independently create a whole new set of systematic correlates, such as must happen in science from time to time. It cannot conceive past what basic systematics it has received. Yet the human mind does habitually surpass this; it analyses afresh, creates novel concepts, novel in nature, and applies these.
Does mind obey its own functional laws ? Yes, but not always. Sometimes mind errs, departing from the creative form of its most distinctive and characteristic operations. Unlike matter, it can make make mistakes. Interestingly, it can also process these or leap beyond them.
There is a certain sense in which mind can dispose itself; whereas matter simply is disposed.
For the machine analogy, appeal is made to two points: i) the mind has certain objectives and standards of its own or for its work; and ii) it can fail in these. But how does this really resemble a machine ? In a machine, as we shall see, both points are completely untrue, so that the analogy is completely false. Let us take i) first. At once we notice that in the case of a machine, it is initiated by a designer, who extrinsically held such and such purposes for it! Strictly, the machine does not have these purposes at all. But the mind does!! And this is the point at issue. In this particular, therefore, the ground of the analogy is mistaken; the point is one of disjunction, of contrast. Thus there is not merely the point that one is here arguing by analogy, in seeking to mechanise the mind, a procedure always suspect and a formal logical fault; the matter is aggravated by the fact that here there is a false analogy.
Nor is this all, in terms of point i). The analogy actually disguises a vital matter. On the one hand, there is the processive aim of the designer of the mute machine, seen through the activities of the machine, and known perhaps to him; and on the other, there is the objective, there are the aims over-riding and ultimate in the mind itself.
In this notice, first, that in each of these two elements of purpose, we are dealing with non-matter qualities, areas of intention. Second: the mind does not merely make purposes or appreciate them: its construction has a design correlative tothepower to make purposes, whereby it makes them. It is one thing to know how to live in a house; it is quite another to know how to build it. It is the difference between construction and maintenance.
Nor does the mind merely effect purposes magically unallied to its essential nature. While as we shall see, the purposes of the mind may be regarded as dependent on the ultimate purposes of the human spirit, the whole conspectus of observable function is there, under whatever name it may be designated.
What is the causal origin of the mind's powers of purpose ? The cause of this capacity is the question; and we cannot leave it wrapped in inept and even misleading analogy that would "meet" the point by ignoring it. Mind, unlike matter, entertains purposes, more and less remote, and applies these with varied results and wisdom.
But let us proceed to point ii) above, the second area of specific fraud in the analogy... or confusion. Machines strictly do not err! Any error is in the mind of the maker of the machine! He imagines that a design will effectually enable his constructed performer, his machine to do certain specified things. If it does, he is not in error. If it does not, he is in error. The machine simply obeys the laws of matter, carries out the principles of matter. Neither does it err nor is it capable of error at all! Man however is!
This disjunction between the two cases proposed in the analogy, mind and machine, like the others, is still there when all the endeavours of verbal quibble, and all the confused categories are spent. Matter does not err. Its laws are inviolable by it. Man does err. Whether the laws be those of thought in logic, of society, of morals, of God, or even those he proposes to himself for whatever reason, he can and does err, can and does fail, can and does falter, can and does seek remedy, correction and improvement because of error; and whether this be by his own acknowledgement or not, he errs; whether this be in his exams or in his confusion or in his clarity... he can and does err.
Matter on the other hand is wholly bereft of relevant relation to mind (except that it shows law written into it, just as mind shows power to analyse and purpose thereto, written into it). Moreover, just as matter's law required legislative power of some kind, logically preceding its construction, so mind's power is also caused from a power which transcends matter, operating from a qualitative background adequate not only for the construction of the human mind, but derivatively, also for the level of the operational constructions wrought by that human mind!
Dependent on the same criteria, we move to the same sort of conclusion, except to note that in this case the power must transcend not only matter, but even the capacity to construe and create matter: for it must be a power, an operative and intelligent power, one able to envisage and indeed enact the analytical and relevantly purposive-and-executive powers of the human mind. The source must be a purposing and creative power of utter analytical brilliance. Necessarily a supernatural intelligence, ultimately one freed from all constitutive limitations as before, invaded His created scene of crafted material to produce what ? A materially-sited unit of rare and exquisite transcendence over the already compellingly beautiful logical order of matter... The startling transcendence of the originating intelligence and will is seen in that it transcends in kind, the human mind which in turn transcends the excellencies of matter. So moving from basic considerations provided in the preceding section on matter, we advance categorically - but integratively in causal requirements.
The human mind, then, is distinctive, analytical, creative but prone to error even in terms of its own objectives as consciously held. In all this, it departs from the whole scheme of matter, transcends it (and in one regard falls short of it, even while - and indeed because - moving in a more exalted region, creatively speaking). It lacks what matter has, therefore, in vital regards; has what matter lacks in entire regards, and is not - in terms of sufficient cause, derivable from matter. (Cf. p. 80 infra.)
The making of mind, then, requires the analytical ability with which to conceive, in order to execute the provisions for the power of analysis found in mind. To be able to analyse a basic analytical unit in order to make one and to execute the vision: this is something vastly superior to the invention of ideas on a given analytical basis, in a given analytical unit such as appears in the case of the human mind with its constitutive and natural limits.
Constructing the constructor of variable and humanly unpredictable creative parameters, making the mind of man is an act which vastly excels any performanceby man within them, and sets a limit even far beyond that between artificial 'intelligence' and the natural variety. Indeed, creative elevation of perspective, the power to outdistance a whole plane of thought, as for example, in inventing calculus or computers or a poem of a visionary character, this itself is beyond the 'slave' mechanical labour; but the power to construct what creatively itself can also construct, this is two spheres above! And each sphere represents a change in power in kind, not mere degree.
We are looking at performance of tasks, imagination by courtesy of the creator of the computer, or his equivalent; and then at the creativity of the creator of the computer or the program, which transcends the power merely to execute an order, however complex - where is the order! Thirdly, there is the power to create the creator of programs, the causal and adequate basis for the capacity to transcend not only orders, but to make a maker, construct a constructor, elevate an entity until it can create within a world but outside mere commands. That is two vast steps beyond the simplicity of mere performance. That is the causal level in view.
No mere man has even begun exhaustively to analyse even the first phase of operational reality, that of man as a given agent in its setting of power and competences at all its peculiar and particular levels - in a causal and complete fashion with rational and verified facility, showing its nature. Psychology and psychiatry are bogged down (see Chapter 4 infra) in one "wheel" precisely because they are limited humanly by the analytical and discerning power of the very minds with which they seek to examine mind. As the apostle Paul remarks in a cognate area,"measuring themselves by themselves, they are not wise" (II Corinthians 10:12).
The flaws, real or imagined, in mind systematically present, or the limits, these become the barriers to understanding on a purely human basis. These psychic disciplines relate to mind, not being in themselves up to the level of designing a mind as a novelty, ab initio, or for that matter, even as a copy! Bio-computing in its forward hopes, looks at ingredients already given, for combination. (The fascinating article on pp. 122-123 infra is of interest here.) The creation of potential for understanding, without its necessity and with scope for its abuse, this is an art as deep as the life of man; it needs not only the wisdom to perceive how it may be done, but the power to effect it. At such times, the power of man to deal with predictable matter becomes - vast and noble as it may be - a pitiable pittance compared with the 'cost' of creating such a mind as that of man.
Very great analytical power (*4) then is needed to analyse in order to bring into being, to create, institute, actualise and activate a cognitive analyst. This supernal power must be one so creative, one imaginatively so vital as to be able to endue a derivative analyst (man) with imagination which is both engendering and disciplined. The need then is for: intelligent, creative, analyst maker. The alone eternal-by-nature X had to be law-creative and form-conserving for matter; but now is seen also to be an imaginatively creative, disciplined engenderer of an effort-unit: a creator of conceiving, creative mind. In acronym, we are back to AEBN with CCCM added, as one aspect of our developing position.
We have looked at matter with its admirable law keeping qualities and shall expand on this concept shortly (cf. Ch.3, esp. pp. 268-317, 331, 332E, 935, 1203); and then turned to mind with its scintillating imaginative and conceptual properties, by which it investigates law; and more than this of course it has - but not less.
Of that more, its capacity for collision with reality, without contrary coercion into conformity is one of the most obvious and demanding features.
"I just can't seem to stop myself," sometimes, a man - perhaps even a youth - may say. At no time did he think it right, analytically or in any other way. It simply appealed to something he did not consider a good judge, within him - (something like pleasure which is no criterion at all of right and wrong, in that you can have good and bad pleasures in your own sight). Then knowing it to be wrong (in his own eyes) as he did it, he nevertheless proceeded to do it, regretting it as he did it!
This species of conduct is extremely common, and not only in the young; except that as people grow older, they sometimes try to harden their thinking until they characteristically repress their own opinion of their own actions; sometimes speaking about it at length to their psychiatrists, and weeping on their couches (always much more expensive than shoulders... and immeasurably less effective, as we shall show, than the Cross).
Spirit ? that element of the human being apt to will, to refuse, to opt, decide, elect, select, love and hate. It is more than this, but not less. It is distinct in kind from mind, which can err, but not will; imagine, but not determine initial (that is, the most ultimate) purpose. It is precisely in spirit that man comes nearest to freedom; for here he can see the good, and do the bad. It is true there is a limit to that - you can begin to find out why he willed and so on; but in the last analysis, will (*5) he can, and one reason for deciding to alter his course could be simply to falsify the predictions of an officious-seeming analyst.
In other words, there is a kind of intelligible interlocking and originating and purposing in man, relative to understanding, and the use of mental knowledge: a spirit in man. If he is blind or dysfunctional in spirit, then that is defunct; but where and in so far as he can see, there is the power to opt.
From what does the selective source of guilt, and shame come ? To be ashamed, by the way, requires an awareness of an option voided or avoided needlessly in life. Thus the moment you tell us we ought not to think this way or that, you are raising and validating just such questions of value and selection which, on the other hand if you ignore, preclude you from speaking at all on the topic; which makes any further answer unnecessary. If there is no option, there is no guilt; and if there must be no option (to satisfy some philosopher), then such a person cannot consistently tell us that we ought not to believe thus and so, (such as the existence of options); for that assumes the concept of option that is, in the very same breath, being denied. He uses it to deny it.
In using or requiring or blaming for misuse of option, you lose your power in consistency to deny it; in denying it, however, you lose your scope to use it... but use it just the same, demonstrating a second time that you are then using words without points, inoperative ideas.
What then is the origin of this (functionally) profoundly separate thing ?... spirit... This will disposing, this selective, this conceiving-and-deploying power in man: it is one not merely beyond the obedience of matter, and the imaginative variability of mind. Rather within the limit of its vision, it rises towards the power with which to combat law; to deny it (though it is); to break it (though it may be desired): whether through imperiousness or perversity of will. Whence then is spirit ? Clearly spirit is not a functional identity linked to matter, or disposed by mind; for it is precisely in being beyond this, that it is analysed and requires its specific or comprehending cause. Spirit is from a something, an "X" able to conceive and create beyond the limits of the mind and matter themselves; to create in particular an agent able to fight the one (if desired) or employ it; and to engage the other (for purposes neither may attest, or which both may confirm).
To this analytically necessary minimal sufficient cause, hence descried and in measure described on the logical horizon, we give the following indicia: it must at least be a spiritually systematising, agent-activating, matter-and-mind transcending originator of mini-spirits: it must be both spirit-creative and mind-matter-spirit correlative. We could in part denote as follows for the acronymically minded: AEBN + CCCM + SSAAMMTOMS... AEBNCCCMSSAAMMTOMS.
Yet let us respond to it quite directly. If anyone made Him, it is that which would be the cause of the system, be the system maker, the ultimate cause, which we seek: namely God.
God-maker + 'God' + correlation for co-operation or development and so forth, this becomes the ground for the requirement of a sufficient cause for its creation, continuance and correlation. It is simply an extension, a more demanding extension, an infinitely more demanding extension of the reasoning presented before.
This as before requires God so that the 'God' of which we spoke as 'made' or of whom it was implied, would merely be a misuse of the term, something irrelevant to our quest. Like the dead burying their dead, we could leave it to those who found it interesting. So then that line of enquiry is defunct. Systems of gods merging and emerging from systems and all such things require God for their institution, constitution, execution and continuance.
Therefore, nobody could have made God unless he created the inverted commas to show it was a mere pretence. The ultimate, non-derivative, non-dependent necessity of which we have reasoned, and the concept of someone making God; or a mere system of gods: this is a contradiction in terms.
Since the first is necessary - God, the second is impossible: someone making him. The question suggests a pathological position on the divine, such, as a matter of fact, as that described in Romans 1 in its later verses. It exhibits a failure to follow the requirements of logic for God, by immediately trying to re-define His existence in such a way that He is excluded: a perverse, unproductive and unprofitable procedure, like trying to divide 1 by zero on purpose... something which might justly deemed 'meaningless', or more kindly, 'undefined'! After all, what is the significance of dividing something by what is not there ?
In this case which we are examining, indeed, it is a contradiction of the very meaning of the concept. The question 'Who made God ?' is however of pathological interest in that it shows the pre-occupation with what comes and goes, to the point that its source is excluded, as if by hypnosis, so that the everlastingly sufficient basis for what comes and goes is ignored. It resembles, in the area of irrationality, the case of someone seeing a man pull a trigger and commit murder, observing the death, taking the (non-existent) pulse and then indicating that in principle, no one can take away the life of another. It cannot happen. Yet there it is staring him in the face.
Let us give, in sum, then the answer to the question.
God always has to be in order ever to be, there being no alternative in time or number or scope at the ultimate, as shown (pp. 17ff. supra, pp. 39 ff. infra). He must sometime be, so that we can ever be; so He must always have been, since we are. Hence no one could have made Him for that would deny what, at the very least, He must be for us to be. We have seen all this; but this is to point and apply it to a simple and age-old question briefly.
No one made God, but He is internally, eternally, necessarily self-sufficient, something which matter, man, and correlative mind and spirit only too clearly are not. This negative, this non-self-sufficiency, is shown not only by the inabilities of all others, and in particular by the properties of matter relative to structure and power. It is not merely a question of what these elements cannot do. It is far more intimate and personal as well. It relates to the observed phenomenon of the death of mind and spirit, involuntarily, both in their correlation with each other and with matter... often unwillingly; often catastrophically unexpectedly. Such is man, the non-self-sufficient.
Quite contrary is God. Unable to be made, unable to be duplicated, unable to be dispensed with in circuits, series or sequences, author of process and not subject to His creation: God has absolute life, inaccessible to the constraints of a conferred constitution, of a confrontational creation or of unforeseen developments. THUS:
# God is Eternal
That is how Anything can be temporary. And it is permanently necessary.
# God is Free
Concerning God: we find He is a single, unique, eternal, internally self-sufficient, analyst-creating, spirit-engendering, system-transcending and yet orderly being; one eternally sufficient within Himself for Himself; a legislator-analyst; a spirit disposer; a maker of destiny and of men with destinies. He is a creator-and-combiner of matter and mind and spirit in man; for again, if you had three such causes - for each ingredient, its own, co-operating in a system - you need the sufficient cause of the three and their co-operative ability, mutual intelligibility... That, then, would be God.
# There is One God
He has, as Paul points out in verses 19:20 of Romans 1, obviously an eternal nature and a transcendent divine power. He is limited by nothing, for all must depend on Him; so He is all powerful as well as eternal. There is only one, and there is no other being to contest, conspire, compel; nothing is there to challenge; everything that tries could, in the last analysis, be caused not to exist, be gifted with a collapse capacity; and in any case, all is dependent for initial derivation and ultimate preservation, on God. It is hard to be ultimately challenged by what you support... absolutely!
Further, He is free since no conferred constitution can be His, in that if it were: we would have to seek its cause outside Himself; which would similarly force us back to the ultimate, to God, who would be free.
# God is Changeless
God does not change, because if He did, it would signify that He had not - from all time or beyond any time, understood something. This is impossible, as He has no conferred constitution to understand, and no other constitution can withstand Him and all is made by Him; so that He is always the same, because that is the only thing consistent with the nature we find is obvious. (It would be of interest to refer to Malachi 3:6, which reads: "I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed"; at this level in our procedure, however, we refer to this without using it in our logical order.)
The divine being itself is not forwardable into any superior, more desired or essentially better situation or condition, all things being available from the first, and nothing limiting to the last, no growth in 'stature' being consistent with a non-created being whose existence is held in the power of none, neither of any nature nor of any other thing. To find out or have to experiment to ascertain, would imply the exercise of faculties or of facilities which had met limits within or outside their own being, thus being intra-systematic entities.
It follows with simplicity that God being always what He wants to be, and never hindered in being it, in anything, is it always; and nothing developing to summon His mind to new heights, all heights being His from the first, there is neither (from knowledge, from satisfaction, from desire or any other source) occasion for change, nor a way to it which does not contradict what He is. He is it and has it and stays it, possessing not a mere optimum (which implies limits) but the sheerest completeness at all times and, for that matter, before time. He needs nothing from His creation; it needs everything from Him. Now let us pursue further the related topic of limits.
If then the 'natural' scene is made, the Maker is God; for He is the One without deriving grounds, being self-sufficient, the only logically viable option. Thus there is not a natural scene for God.
If it is thought He may have an internal constitution, such that it is limiting to His freedom (material - or other): then who made it, was sufficient, was the reason for it ? If nothing, we end as before. If something, then that is God, for the same reason as before with a 'natural' setting. He therefore can have no internal constitution confronting Him, no essence to which He is bound. What however if He were merely susceptible to something because of an internal potential drift ? Then what is the reason for that drift ? If nothing then this is ruled out as before. If something, then as before, that would be God. Therefore He is not subject to it, but sovereign over it, always was, and always would be.
God is not subject to anything, confronted by anything, forced to do or be anything.
He is, in sum, illimitably free. Neither time with its partial processes nor space with its constraints and confinements, nor matter which exhibits dependence on both is or can be to Him a restriction, therefore. Contrary in nature to His essence, they have existence conferred on them by creation, being caused to be for one reason only, this: that He wants them to be; and for as long as He wants them to be, they will be.
As limitations, they do not and cannot exist. They serve Him.
Neither within nor outside God can limitations rule, neither intrinsically nor extrinsically, except by decree at His will; and even then their 'rule' is their subjection to Himself! Neither can they intimate to nor teach Him, who makes them serial and limited from His unlimited estate. Toys or contrivances, this trio of time, space and matter are derived at will, removed upon desire.
The creation of time in particular, of course, implies an episode originating the series, instituting the limit so that it might be applied wherever God saw fit; for an underived derivative is a contradiction in terms, and the partial cannot be co-extensive with the complete. What is arriving on the scene cannot already be totally present, consummate and unchanging. Beyond time, God is not subjectible to sequence or that special form of it called development. Or if He were to develop, what would be the base of potential which would realise itself in such consequences! That would be a dowered, a donated, a given nature or character, a simple contradiction in terms.
Take man. If God wanted to rule by violence, He need not have made him in the first place, or He could have made him without freedom, preserving His own principles in peace. He is what He wants to be and is limited by nothing, driven by no constitutional constraints, for no one constituted Him who, being self-existent and almighty, needs no 'completion' by man or anything else.
Conferring freedom out of the disposing of His own will, with freedom, God made man to be what he is, because that is how He wanted him to be, in his essential capacities. To man was given potency and potential. Responsibilities result; but these are not beyond God; He is beyond this phase of His creation, as beyond every other. He does not outdistance His wit, for that would imply a disparity between His desire and His ability, a constitutive limit, which contradicts a non-constituted being, someone not derived, contrived or set up within a situation and limits. It is necessary to remember that in consistency there is not and cannot be any system or constraint whatever above or over God, for if there were, the formulator, fashioner, creator, sustainer of that limit would be God's disposer, and that would be God! It is a contradiction in terms.
As for God, He always is what He wills to be, and is not subjectible to or limitable by sequence with its directions, institution, execution and directedness. He does not impact negatively upon Himself, in terms of some auto-militancy, schizophrenic squalor being the potion of incapacity; and knowing what He wills to be, He is not in two minds about what that is, since that would be mind limiting mind and a barrier or limit to freedom, a constitutive constraint impeding what He wants in an eternal duality of being. so that it would be polytheism. Even if it were maintained that He wanted to be contrary to Himself, that would ultimately entail that His wants were those of two gods, which need their maker of system for joint immersion in it; or that His will was operative against itself, being moved eternally in two opposite directions, so that He was not free, but bound by constitutive incapacity for resolution, at war with a self which is merely an anthropomorphic reflection of our own created conditions, whilst contrary to His necessary freedom. He, however, and a 'self' constitute two eternal entities, so that the case is essentially equivalent to the former one.There can be no war within when there is nothing to resist, present, past or future, over and before time, timelessly in eternity.(Cf. pp. 88ff., 92ff. infra.)
He awaits nothing for His completeness and is dependent on His entirely derivative creation likewise for nothing: whether this be construed as material, psychological, social, existential or moral. So far from seeking to derive some need out of His creation, He puts into it. (Cf. Chapter 7, pp. 578-582 infra, "Topical Thought".) There is neither growth nor development in the nature of God, neither desperation nor aspiration for anything in His creation beyond the constituted powers of their dower and design. Unconstituted Himself, He constitutes His creation in harmony with His will. Divine-Sovereignty-squeezing-from-creation hypotheses are therefore hallucinatory, just as are the 'constitutive limits', in self-contradiction.
Truth is constituted by His deeds, words and decision, His eternal will; and justice by His determinations and the configurations of that nature which He both made, and knows - His creation. Deeded no 'potential', God does not serve its fulfilment; complete, He does not change. (We add: UC - unchanging.)
Nothing is His inheritance, or able to be an obstacle to His constitution. You cannot inherit when there is nothing to provide the inheritance! He has not been constituted, lives in no system, has no confines, psychological, moral, ethical or personal. He is what He is by no control or disposing of His form. Nothing is there to dispose it, limit it, regulate it. Absolute freedom is His (AF), and this concept, necessary in our logical structure and in terms of the reasoning provided, must be realised. Because we do not have it, we may irrelevantly prefer it, or be moved to imagine it ours. This however must be unimagined if we are to be logical, not psychological.
Thus God has no system, confines, bounds or limits, internal (cf. *22) or external, in any sense of those terms, imposed upon Him, delimited before Him, impactive upon Him. As One, not two, He has nothing outside His control effectively to war with Him, create a compelling resistance to Him, within or without. Any thought of war involves two gods, at this level, for One is incapable of frustration by what has been worked either within Himself or outside Himself. Within, He works and that, as One always what He wants to be, as shown, illimitably pleased with what He does.(Cf. Barbs, Arrows and Balms, Item 6, and A Spiritual Potpourri, Ch.5, p. 90.)
What then can limit His working! No code, element or contradiction.
Thus self-war is impossible, no constituent - constituent? no function being given; and internal distortion of, or resistance to what He either does or is, being an example of self-war (or auto-militancy, if you are psychologically minded, will do). Since He created all things as He will, including their systems, limitations, opportunities and potencies: it would be at His own discretion if He were embarrassed; but then that would be indiscreet, a lack of either ability or foresight, a limit! There is, quite simply, nothing fixed against Him, whether to thwart, divide, defile or contort, so that intimations of conflict, mutability ... self-assault and degeneration pre-suppose what is not.
p. 33 :
Passenger Adrian: It really is so free up here. Not like the train - no rails, no clanging.
Passenger Robert: Yes, it is freer. Yet the engine is limited by the engineer who made it, the interior by the manufacturer who made it, even space by the God who formed it, by the astronomical system that lies in it, while the aeroplane is limited by both of these.
Passenger Adrian: It is also limited, if you come to think of it, by the passengers, pilot and engineers who are in it - their skills and the demands they make of it.
Passenger Robert: And now you mention it: The passengers too are limited by the form, the talents and above all, the spirit that each one has... except for this: that some know and freely love God.
For them, there are no absolute limits, except for the fact that they are creatures while God is their Creator. Yet that's the way they want it. It's no use being God, if you are not as good as He is. Besides, it is like walking in the Rocky Mountains. YOU are not these massive beauties, or soaring peaks, but you have access to them, and live with them
They are your heritage. When God through Christ is freely your heritage, there is no limit to the glory of your inheritance: as He says, all the Father has is mine, and as Paul says, Christ is yours, all things are yours.
Passenger Adrian: The mountains below suggest the power, majesty and strength of our foundation in God, while the delicacy of the clouds and the sheer grandeur of the immensity of space recall to us the spiritual marvel of vertical ascent to ever wonderful heights, lateral movements to the refreshment of His provisions, varied in nature but profound in concept.
Passenger Robert: The solidity and security has its symbol, as does the freedom and the delightfulness of mobility. It is sad so many seem to want to destroy the majestic foundations and fly about with marvellous mobility without any spiritual encompassment at all. It is rather like ploughing with porcelain and running with plough-shares for shoes. For my part, I'll take the limits God gives me and experience the freedom they enable.
Always what He would be - and deriving what He will, He neither changes nor has any need which is in the power or the gift of His creation, to provide Him. It subsists; He consists. What He is, what He does, is what He wants and what He gets. There neither is nor can be any divorce between Him and reality; for He is its basis, engenderer without constraint, compulsion or control. To Him it can add nothing, nor is He nor could He be at war with Himself (cf. *22 and p. 581 infra), for that would necessarily imply an inherited, potentiated or processed power that was not His will, resisting Him; and that, as always, requires the cause beyond Him, to institute it, which merely makes it clear that the Being called 'god' was not; and that this Being behind is the one properly so called. It is all a matter of contradiction in terms, to gain such anomalous situations; and the terms are logically required in the first place, as has been shown. Let us then recapitulate.
Were His desire baulked by 'reality', the 'reality' could be changed: He thus always is independent, and what He does conforms to what He is, and what He is has no donor, disciplinarian or control. He is what He will be, and will be what He is. Beneficiary of none, He makes all. Nothing can force Him to deny Himself, abort His rules, or principles and ways even momentarily. This last point is, as we shall see, of great importance when we come to revelation into such a world as this one is, in comparison with what God is! (Cf. pp. 44-47 and endnote 22, pp. 88 ff. infra.)
God is, we say, illimitably free; nor could it be otherwise. Thus even self-contradiction in word or deed is self-assault. If now there were other 'gods' as we saw (or other things), they would with Him constitute a system, and the systematiser for that is then needed; and that is God. So God is One. If the other 'gods' (hypothesised for argument's sake) were defined as not being in God's system, then by definition, there are at least two systems, and we need the grounds for their susceptibility to the unitary thought (in being called 'systems' for example) we would be engaging in at this point, relative to them. Here we would, then, have systems of communication about them, thought involving them, subordinating them to one rational system.
If however the 'other god' were thought of as not being part of one rationally orientable system, then it could not be conceived of or construed in our rational system of thought, in which, however, it has just come. It is already here! Hence, as before, you would need God to invent the intimate correlation of capacities of the two 'gods'.
If it is, for all that, defined that the other 'god' must be in no way relatable to God or to our thought, then the definition at once violates the condition implied in the statement concerning the 'god', which starts with the correlation constituted by the very concept of 'goddishness' which is at once involved.
To fulfil the condition, such a thing literally could not even be thought; for if it is, then the correlation is established and the ground of it is God, as a basis for the duality. If we want to conceive a 'god' who is inconceivable in order to 'beat the system', then we are engaged in a flat contradiction of terms so that our thought attacks itself and destroys itself, before it can destroy or attack anything else. Like the Challenger spacecraft, it blows up... on the pad, or nearby.
There can be no correlation, no inter-relation and indeed no existence of any other than One God. If it so much as existed, it is at once within the confines of an existent system with another existent, God, so that the system of existences needs its creator, and some creator at that, when God is part of the scenario! that however would then be God.
Thus God is free, and our freedoms, which explain our behaviour of artistic creation, our alteration of heart (not necessarily for the right - the susceptibility is the point) as a race, or our recreation of heart by God - these relate to this (*7).
Let us summarise a little. Not composed of fashioned and comprised units, such as is the case with matter, which exhibits that it has no power to create, God is thus a free Spirit. With no limits to His thought, and all things being not barriers, He knows all things and at all times is what He would be. Self-determining without limit and changeless without adjustment, for Him there is no state preferable to the one He adopts, itself intrinsically beyond time; though changes of form are matters of foreseen purpose and program from time to time, such as in the case of the incarnation.
Page 35 continued in the next section