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Now Blogging Afresh at Ad Orientem 西儒 - The Western Confucian

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Scientific Anti-Materialism

Here's an excellent anti-materialist argument, as quoted in Books in Review: Modern Physics and Ancient Faith, a review of Modern Physics and Ancient Faith by Stephen M. Barr in the FIRST THINGS November 2003:

Then there is Barr’s powerful argument against materialism as such: “If ideas are just patterns of nerve impulses, then how can one say that any idea (including the idea of materialism itself) is superior to any other? One pattern of nerve impulses cannot be truer or less true than another pattern, any more than a toothache can be truer or less true than another toothache.” In other words, human judgment and evaluation, which are necessary to determine truth and error (including the truth or error of materialism), presuppose a world of moral meaning that transcends the merely material. The very effort to demonstrate the truth of materialism thus refutes materialism.

This seems to me an expansion or scientific clarification of C.S. Lewis's use of conscience as a proof for the existence of God in Mere Christianity.

Both of the above arguments point to a transcendent Supreme Being of absolute morals, the God of Israel.