20.2 Life from God
We have in scientific theism the principle that all our life, love and being derive
from God. He has all these things in himself and, indeed, as himself. From this
it follows that God exists whenever any life, love or being exist, The dispute with
the materialists is whether God is the transcendent and benevolent One of theism
or (as they claim) the multiple eternally-existing energies of the universe. My
aim is to provide sufficient theoretical detail and consistency for the God of traditional
This life from God is that which infills and enlivens all living beings and non-living
things: all conscious creatures and all non-conscious objects. It infills and enlivens
according to the outermost forms of those beings, creatures and objects. According
to Postulate 10 that outermost form of a being is composed
of the previous actions that it has performed.
Between God and us, theism implies that we have multiple generative degrees--of
spirituality, mentality and physicality--each with internal complexities that we
have only begun to explore. What I know about them will be presented in Part
III. We will see many of the mental and physical
processes that we have already come to know and love in the sciences. Now they are
being put together within a new theoretical framework. Much of the individual phenomena
of the sciences can be carried over unchanged. What will change are the kinds of
causes that are supposed to produce those changes. This will be particularly
interesting in psychology and biology, especially concerning origins and evolution.
Neurophysiology will be revised, in at least its theoretical component. At present,
it looks for ‘neural correlates of consciousness’ and maybe finds some. Instead,
the actual causal relations between consciousness and its neural correlates will
have to be established in a non-reductive manner.
The final effects of all loves and dispositions are the physical actions that
we perform. These actions, which are kinds of choices, are the bottom line of theistic
theory. They are the final and definite effects whose occurrences are the basic
foundation for the existence of a particular created world. The temporal world is
most certainly never maya (either as a game or as an illusion) because
the production of particular acts in the physical world is what in turn provides
the occasions for the operation of all prior loves and dispositions. God cannot
create permanent beings that are fully formed, except insofar as there are prior
physical events that form the foundation and outer framework for the dispositions
of the new being. What God can immediately create are physical events themselves.
Everything else takes somewhat longer.20.2There
are no instant adults.