Last time we saw that the KCA seems to give us a personal cause of the Universe, in addition to the other attributes we’ve looked at. While we do not particularly mean something like “the God of the Bible,” that God might plausibly fit. (Whatever “God of the Bible” means).*
How might the analogy of an author illuminate this concept of a personal cause?
It would seem, straightforwardly enough, that nothing but a person could tell a story. Show me a book written by a human person – Dante’s Inferno, let’s say. Now show me a book written by an amoeba, or a frog, or a tree – pick the phylum you like – or one written by the law of gravity, or the number 7 (whatever its capacity for sponsorship on Sesame Street might be).
Ah – but perhaps they have not been published! Well, I now add to their misery by submitting that they cannot even write!
There is something in this which I, at least, find fascinating. JRR Tolkien could have chosen NOT to write The Lord of the Rings. When he did start writing, a new world – one we ourselves can imagine inhabiting – came into existence.
Or let’s come back to our author, as I am not at all familiar with Tolkien’s writing process. She wants to tell an original story (not one in sequence or relation with any other story that has been told)
Let’s imagine her in front of a small audience. She is alone in front of them, and quiet at first. Then she speaks.
And that is like the Big Bang of that world. Suddenly everything comes rushing into existence, each thing falling into order. These are not mere syllables uttered at random (not mere noises), but deliberate, according to convention – that is to say, according to rules.
That world has its own matter (which is not like ours, only ephemeral by comparison) which is very real to the characters. Real to them, because they are made of that matter.
Anything she says is then not only possible, but accomplished. I have made the point before: She might create mountains out of nowhere, and have them tossed into the sea. She might send stars colliding into each other, or send her characters to another dimension from the one they started in. She might even let the characters be conscious of themselves, and have relations which produce still more after their own kind.
She is the God of that world, and there is no other.
But she – in that closed system – could have chosen not to tell a story. She could have chosen not to exercise her power and manifest her presence.
In a like way, we say that God could have chosen not to create. He is a free agent – he has free will – it was logically possible that He not create.
We thus find ourselves in existence, and so, He did create. The story is underway. The next reasonable question is like the one we might ask our author – “Why? Why tell the story of creation?”
It is not time to take up that question – as if I had the answer! – but we will consider another demonstration of the existence of God, and see what can be learned through the analogy of the author.