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Randomness

 
 
JPhil
 
Reply Tue 24 Aug, 2010 02:29 pm
Recently, I've been thinking the idea of random. Thinking on this and as I believe in God. How can anything really be random? Saying an act is random means that no one in existence knows what will happen, but since God knows everything there can be no such thing as randomness because he would know. What do you think? Is it coincidence or something else?
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contrex
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Aug, 2010 02:47 pm
Einstein said that "God does not play dice" referring to the apparent oddness of quantum physics, but later Stephen Hawking said that not only does God throw dice, sometimes he throws them where nobody can see them. I do not believe in God, but I don't see why an omniscient being would not create randomness, even if only for his own amusement.
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Aug, 2010 02:55 pm
@JPhil,
I doubt randomness is possible if you believe in God. I don't, but I do believe that very little happens without a cause.
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contrex
 
  2  
Reply Tue 24 Aug, 2010 03:51 pm
If the universe is like a clockwork machine constructed and set going by God, then free will is an illusion and since everything is determined, the concept of sin becomes nonsense. If purpose is part of this universe, then randomness, by definition, is not possible. This is also one reason why some religious people are opposed to evolution, where, according to theory, (non-random) selection is applied to the results of random genetic variation.

Donald Knuth, a computer scientist and Christian, believes that God is interested in people's decisions and limited free will allows a certain degree of decision making. Knuth, referring to quantum computing and entanglement, comments that God exerts control over the world without violating any laws of physics. He says that what appears to be random to humans may not, in fact, be so random.


JPhil
 
  1  
Reply Thu 26 Aug, 2010 02:16 pm
@contrex,
I agree and that's what I'm saying the concept of random doesn't make sense if everything has a purpose. If the universe is meant to accomplish something then everything in it is along for the ride and doing their part. I can understand some event happening that we don't expect but for it to be random I don't believe that.
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contrex
 
  1  
Reply Thu 26 Aug, 2010 03:50 pm
Personally I don't believe in God, and I think that to suppose that the universe has a "purpose" is a form of superstition, and I am not disturbed by or afraid of the idea of randomness. But that's just my view. Also I am not sure if you are using the word "random" correctly.

JPhil
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 06:42 pm
@contrex,
Well what about purpose or aim. If randomness is without aim, then if we all live in a world with randomness then we live in an aimless world and all things are pointless since they are going nowhere.
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laughoutlood
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 07:01 pm
@JPhil,
Silly me thinking Bohr eternally debunked Einstein's "god doesn't play dice".
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 07:23 pm
Randomness doesn't need to mean the same thing to god as it means to man. Just as infinity is beyond us, so are many other concepts.
We think too highly of our own understanding. Just because we don't know it, don't mean it ain't so.
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contrex
 
  1  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 11:21 am
@laughoutlood,
laughoutlood wrote:

Silly me thinking Bohr eternally debunked Einstein's "god doesn't play dice".


Yes, silly you, essentially.
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coolcubed
 
  1  
Reply Fri 6 May, 2011 03:12 pm
@JPhil,
Randomness is dependent on the position of the onlooker.
Imagine the following:
There is a bag with 10 balls inside it, 5 black and 5 white, all identical in shape and size. If a person were to close their eyes and choose a ball out of the bag, and withdraw the ball, all the while keeping their eyes closed, they could say that the color of the ball in their hand is random.
However, if a friend were to see the ball in their their friend's hand, which (let's just say) was white, they would be able to say that the color of the withdrawn ball was not random, for there is a one hundred percent chance that the ball is white. The original person however, could still say with just as much accuracy that the color of the ball in their own hand has a fifty percent chance of being black and a fifty percent chance of being white.
If a god exists, the same would be true for him. For God, nothing is random, for he knows everything. But for us, the people with their eyes closed, randomness still exists.
I hope this helps :p
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