Causality is not linked to temporal succession

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Parent debateThis argument is used in the debate Does God exist?.
Argument againstThis argument is an objection to The universe has no cause or reason for being.
Keywords: Cosmological argument, First cause, Causality, Time, God[ edit ].



“Firstly, it assumes that a cause is necessarily prior to its effect. But we've already seen that a simultaneous cause and effect are conceivable. It's the asymmetry that counts, not the time. The absence of an anterior moment is therefore not a sufficient argument to reject the need for a cause. [...] The idea of simultaneous causality is sometimes opposed by the fact that causal influence could not be transmitted faster than light. But [...] a close analysis of the very act of causation leads to the idea that cause and effect are always simultaneous. We are commonly misled on this point by our imagination, which confuses the existence of the causative being, anterior to the being caused, with the very act of causation, which is necessarily the exact contemporary of the emergence of the effect. The match obviously existed before the flame, but the moment when the phosphorus is sufficiently rubbed to generate the flame is necessarily the exact contemporary of the moment when the flame sputters out.”

Frédéric Guillaud, God exists, p.234, Éditions du Cerf, Paris, 2013.


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