A comment by pboyfloyd on Evangelical Realism to a post on Defending the Courtiers at Intellectual Conservative:
Consciousness(as I understand it) is a property of certain organic beings, and of course there is a ‘gradient’, and of course we could devise tests to grade the consciousness of everything from a rock to a god....and a transcript of the 1995 debate between Dr. William Lane Craig and Dr. Corey Williamson on "Does God Exist" ... Dr. Williamson states:
Hint:- gods don’t do well.(they don’t seem to live up to their omnipresence to answer, while rocks, although ‘there’, don’t display any observable consciousness of their environment.)
"Every morning, I, a lot of you, get up and we go to our car, and we put the key in the ignition, turn it over, and the car starts up. You can think of the ignition of the gasoline as somewhat of a big bang. There's this explosion of gasoline igniting. What's the cause of the gasoline igniting? The sparkplug. It's a spark off this sparkplug, which causes the gasoline to ignite, that causes the small big bang that gets you to school every day. What Professor Craig has given us is that there is some sort of cosmological sparkplug. Maybe there is. But if there is, we've no reason to believe it's omniscient, no reason to believe it's omnibenevolent, and no reason to believe that it's omnipotent. From the fact that the universe was created, all we have some reason to believe is that it is slightly more powerful than its effects. So maybe it's a little stronger or more powerful than the nature of the universe as it exists. But the universe is finite, as Dr. Craig has argued. So we don't have any reason to conclude this thing is infinite. It may be strong but finite. We don't have any reason to believe its omniscient or even sentient at all. It could be a spark plug of some kind, maybe a timeless sparkplug, but a sparkplug nevertheless."So, this morning, my non-devotional thought is: God is not "necessary" in any sense. The argument that "because the universe began to exist, it had to have a cause, and that cause must be God" is wholly unsupported. It could have been a spark plug. Literally or metaphorically. It did not have to have intelligence or power. It could have been a catalyst for material or forces that already existed. Or it could have been something entirely unimaginable at this time in our history.
And it could have been dumb as a rock.