Quantum Fluctuations as Atheists’ Pixie Dust

by Lenny Esposito

Last week, I took a group of high school and college students to the University of California Berkeley to teach them how to engage others who would be skeptical of the claims of Christianity. Each day we had several good conversations on campus talking about the big questions of life. We also invited some noted atheists in the area to give presentations on the reasons they believe God is not real. Two of our guests were David Fitzgerald of the atheistfilmfestival.org and Mark Thomas, president of the Atheists of Silicone Valley.

One of the proofs Christians offer for God is the fact that the universe exists. I’ve frequently cited the Kalam Cosmological argument, which states:
        Whatever begins to exist has a cause
       The universe began to exist
       Therefore, the universe has a cause.

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The standard theory for the creation of the universe is recognized to mean that all time, space, matter and energy came into being at some finite point in the past. Since the discovery of evidence supporting the Big Bang, the idea that the universe came into existence at some fixed point in the past is nearly universally accepted by modern science. However, given the argument above, it means that something must have caused the universe to come into existence. And this has been a big problem to those who dismiss the idea of God being the cause.

Both our guests in their talks fell back on the idea of quantum fluctuations happening within a quantum vacuum state as being the ultimate cause of the universe. Mark and David both believe that this theory (a form of which is also being popularized by Stephen Hawking in his books A Brief History of Time and The Grand Design) can really explain everything. Now, I realize that most people are not familiar with quantum physics. However, with a little careful thinking and some basic research, you can see why this scenario fails…

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Quantum Fluctuations as Atheists’ Pixie Dust | Come Reason’s Apologetics Notes