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Main Points:
Why is there something rather than nothing? This question is used by religion preachers to push you towards belief in God which they assume is the explanation, the answer.
Nothing by definition is the complete opposite of something. Nothing is by definition that which cannot become something by itself or if anything works on it.
Something cannot come from nothing for there is nothing there for it to come from. Thus nothing cannot become something by itself or if anything works on it.
If God exists, he cannot make something from nothing.
If God exists, he had nothing to do with our existence! But then would God really be God for God is all-powerful? No.
To say God can make things out of nothing is to say that if something external to nothing works on it it can change into something. But nothing needs to have the power to become something. It needs to have the power to respond to God ordering it to become something. It cannot have for then it wouldn't be nothing.
To say nothing has the power to respond to God's power to change it into something is to deny that God created all things. He did not and could not create the power to respond.
God has no relevance to the existence of the universe.
Another reason he has no relevance to answering why there is something rather than nothing is that there is no evidence that a mind without a body can exist. That is why you cannot say that God is the answer to why something and not nothing for he is claimed to be that sort of mind.
A person is supposedly more important than the whole universe. So why not ask then, "Why does this person exist and not nothing? Why this person and not another?" Religion is more interested in why the universe exists for it wants to undercut science.
What if he made a universe that will never hold life? Would the question of why something instead of nothing be a sane question then? It is not intrinsically a question that makes sense.
Whatever the reason or reasons for why there is something rather than nothing, God is not the answer.
God cannot be the answer.
Why is There Something Rather than Nothing?
We know that God believers argue that God is the reason all things exist, he is the reason movement exists, he is the first cause and he is the reason we see design. All these arguments can be summarised like this, "Why is there something rather than nothing? The answer is God."
The question fails in the search for a proof for God. Here are some proofs for God. Nothing causes itself. There must be a cause of all things that has no cause itself and that can only be God. Nothing moves itself. There must be a mover of all things that never moves.
You can reformulate the question as, “Why is there movement when there might have been no movement?” “Why is there cause when there might have been no cause?” These questions are still asking the same thing, “Why is there this instead of nothing?” Therefore every single proof for God is a failure.
Each individual argument for God is useless. They are based on the absurdity of creation out of nothing. So the question cannot really lead you to God. It is a trick to mask the stupidity of the case for God as a major and clever question.
The "proof" from dependence
The argument from necessity and causality these days take the form of, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” You could rephrase this as, “Why does the universe exist and why do we exist? Why isn’t there simply just nothing?”
The argument for God’s existence from necessity says that “God must be the reason for his own existence for we are not the reason we exist. This assumes that something cannot come from nothing. All things that exist do not need to exist therefore they must be created by a being that cannot not exist. And by a being that had to exist the same way as two and two have to be four. In other words, God’s essence and his existence are one and the same. His nature is existence while existence and essence are not the same in other creatures (page 23, Reasons for Hope). For example, the stone is not its own existence but existence produces it. There can only be one being with the infinite power to be the cause of his own existence not two for two infinites cancel each other so there is only one necessary being or God.”
Some prefer to call it the proof from dependence (page 7, Part 1, Apologetics and Catholic Doctrine) for it says that God is the only being that does not depend on anything to keep him in existence and that he made the universe for everything in it depends on something and he is the thing they ultimately depend on. God makes things and holds them in existence because they don’t need to exist proving that they need to be sustained. The proof says that because nothing in the universe needs to exist it must have been made by a being that does need to exist: God.
The argument seems hard to understand. But it is not. If you suppose that there should be nothing, you could reason that something has been making sure there is NOT just nothing. The argument claims that something that always existed made that which does not need to exist and made something where there should be nothing.
Creation of things not out of anything means ...?
Believers in God say that everything has a cause and that something cannot come out of nothing. So they say that the cause of all is God and that he created all things out of nothing.
God is said to have created all things - he caused nothing to become something. Causing means that something that exists causes something else.
If God caused nothing to become something did he give nothing the power to become something? In this view, God makes the universe make itself. He makes nothing make the universe. This view indicates that the universe could make itself and that God may be superfluous.
If God caused nothing to become something did he work on nothing as opposed to giving nothing the power to work on itself? This is the standard Christian view.
This view has God working on nothing to turn it into something. The previous view has God working on nothing from outside it so that it can create the universe itself.
If something cannot come from nothing then both views are nonsense. Nothing cannot become anything for there is nothing there.
The notion of God giving nothing the power to make things looks far worse than the idea that he simply turned nothing into something. But in fact they are equally silly for they imply that nothing is nothing but how can it really be nothing if it can be worked on or turned into something? A God who can make things not out of anything certainly can give nothing the power to create something.
A Quick Refutation of God as the Answer
If nothing causes something that is unintelligible. It does not make sense. There is nothing there. There is no cause there. God did not make anything from himself. That would be transformation not creation. So the Church says God created all things from nothing. Creation by God from nothing tells us that God is able to make nothing cause something. That is nonsense. They are saying that something cannot come from nothing and then they say it did after all!
Christianity says it does not believe God made all things out of nothing like nothing was some kind of material to make all things from. It says nothing is not a material. God simply made all things but he didn't use anything to make them. That is what it says it means by God making all things out of nothing.
There are two options if all things came to be without coming out of anything.
One is that all things were made out of nothing as if nothing were a material. This view denies that nothing really is nothing. It denies that God need be the only explanation for the existence of all things.
The other option is that there is no connection between something and nothing so whatever exists just popped into existence out of nowhere, out of nothing.
It seems foolish and counter-intuitive to say that something can pop out of nothing. You can't imagine a hundred dollar bill doing it. So some then wonder how the universe could simply pop into existence. The suggestion that nothing can be used like an ingredient to make something is far worse. The reality is that in physics, things are observed coming into being from nowhere.
Philosophers might say, "If you think something popping into existence is stupid then you are right. But you overlooking the uniqueness of the Big Bang so it is not stupid in that case. The Big Bang started off the universe as a whole. It cannot be compared with a banknote popping into existence." Actually the Big Bang produced chaos and a great deal of matter and energy. A Big Bang that creates a banknote would have less work to do! The talk about the uniqueness of the Big Bang is irrelevant for the only thing really unique about it is the scale of the power and energy that appeared.
And the Big Bang theory is not about creation. It supposes that there was already something there to explode.
If there is no logical contradiction in God making the universe out of nothing, then it is said that there is no logical contradiction in the idea of the universe popping into existence without a maker. But even if there is a God it still must have popped out of nothing. So the first suggestion is illogical in the sense that it introduces God unnecessarily.
If creation is illogical, then it is more illogical to bring God into it. It makes a stupid theory far worse.

Verb or Noun?


Why do people like Alister McGrath emphasise the question, "Why is there something rather than nothing?"?

Is the why about accounting for existence? If yes then this turns God into an attempted explanation. But what if God is supposed to be a verb not a noun? Many say that the only thing that matters is being open to God and letting him do good through us. So to them, what matters is God the verb - God the representation of how we ought to live. This makes the emphasis on his being a creative source of reality misplaced and immoral.


It would be wrong to put trying to explain the existence of the universe first. It gives God as a proposed scientific theory.

Or is the question about trying to drive you to answer that love made all things and so we must dedicate ourselves to loving everyone?


Then it is more about inspiring than explaining. And if it were really about love the question would be, "Why do we love when there might have been no love at all?"


Perhaps God is both a verb and a noun but surely he would be more of a verb then? It would be wrong to use the question then to get people to decide that there must be a God for creation needs to be explained.


If God is more of a verb then science by testing love is testing God. Religion is guilty of deceit for trying to keep God and science apart in case God ends up being debunked.


The why stuff is saying the universe has a purpose. But what if God made it just because he could? Also, to say it is for a purpose sounds strange when he has the option of making a universe wherein there is no life at all. What purpose would it have? And there is no problem with God making it assuming that God creating makes any sense.


There is immoral and moral and morally neutral. Believers always assume the purpose of existence is that morally there will be more good than bad. But what if God is aiming for a result that is neither moral or immoral - morally neutral?
The Reason
There is an argument, "The universe popping into existence for no reason makes no sense. The universe popping into existence because God had a reason to make it pop into existence does." But that is to say it can't pop into existence unless there is a reason. The meaning of popping into existence is that there does not NEED to be a reason! The argument is confused.
If God did not have to make the universe and still made it, then in reality there is no intrinsic reason for the universe and our lives in it. If there is a reason it is not intrinsic. Religion says that life has no meaning if there is no God. It has to be referring to intrinsic meaning for it is clear that many non-religious people adore their lives and feel they have importance. So one can develop a sense of non-intrinsic meaning. But the problem is that even if there is a God there is still no intrinsic meaning.
It is more rational to give up on intrinsic meaning. In doing that you will find meaning and that meaning will not depend on God or anything like that. It is cruel to have people seeking intrinsic meaning in God.
Even if there is a God there does not need to be a reason for existence. An artist might create a painting because he can and have no real purpose. It is nonsense that God will only make if he has a reason.
God might make a meaningless worthless universe hoping that we might create meaning. A good person will live up to the purpose for which they were made. A better person will live up to the purpose they make themselves in a meaningless universe. If there is no meaning or if it cannot be known if there is, the person will bestow meaning.
This is the proper wording for the argument, "Why is there something rather than nothing? The answer is God being understood as goodness." In other words, good is a person and good has made all things and that is why there is something rather than nothing. That is what the why means. It is about the purpose. To use a creator as an explanation for why there is something is merely to talk about where things came from as opposed to the purpose of why they exist.
Does the question lead to a refutation of God?
If religion is right, there cannot be nothing for they say God is the only being that needs no explanation for his existence so there had to be something. So the answer for religion would have to be that there simply can’t or couldn’t be nothing.  If it was impossible for there to have been nothing we cannot understand this. Reason says it was possible for there to have been nothing. It follows then that we cannot understand why there is something rather than nothing and so the question gets us nowhere. To answer that its answer is God is to do a conjuring trick.
The question, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” then makes no sense for an honest religionist. That is because he says there could not have simply been nothing as proven by God and reason says there could. To make the question make some sense it is necessary to shelve the doctrine of a necessary being (or a being that couldn’t exist) a doctrine guilty of inferring that there having being nothing is logically impossible. Thinking about the question disproves this God.
Why is there nothing rather than something?
Imagine there is nothing. If there should be something and the question would be, "Why is there nothing rather than something?" Or to paraphrase, “Why is there nothing when there should be something or why is there nothing rather than something?” This question is absurd for we see that it is logically possible for there to have been nothing at all. The point is that existence can't be explained and so we shouldn't even try. This would imply that the creator God concept is denying this and is therefore evil and bigoted and narrow.
Religion reasons that it makes sense to ask, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” and makes no sense to ask, “Why is there nothing rather than something?” We have just shown that this approach is just simply rejecting logic for they think God existing by chance was impossible so that there could not have been nothing.
The question would make sense if there could be something. And we know there could be something for we exist to prove it. The question would then imply that something can pop out of nothing without a cause which is something religion cannot accept for it denies the need for a God to make things. So the answer that we just exist and nothing more needs to be said is the best answer. God is not a good answer so to ask us to believe in God is to ask us to adopt a bad unreasonable opinion. God could not expect us to believe in him when our existence forbids it for he is a bad answer.
If you see the notion of something always existing and becoming the universe, something coming from nothing by itself or something coming from nothing by the power of God all as absurd then we have to choose whatever is the least insane. Beggars cannot be choosers. God should be left out of it for it makes the problems worse.
“Why is there something rather than nothing?”
This says there could have been nothing and also that there could have been something. It says there should be something. And yet if there could be nothing there could be no necessary being such as a God. So God is not a necessary being!
“Why is there nothing rather than something?”
This says there could have been nothing and also that there could have been something. It too says there should be something. And yet if there could be nothing there could be no necessary being such as a God.
So the two questions are inseparable. They have the same assumptions so if one falls so does the other – and remember God believers hold that the second question is nonsense. If one is a stupid question so is the other. Therefore the question, “Why is there something rather than nothing?” makes no sense though it looks as if it does.
And if you believe in God, it makes them make less sense. God is the denial that there could have been nothing for God is the reason why there being nothing was impossible.
The Last Word
God making things but not using anything to make them is absurd. That is not making. Making implies there is something there to be turned into something else. And it turns God into a magic worker or a witch from the fairy stories who are able to make things appear out of nowhere. Its occult - pure and simple. God might be the magician but its still pure hardcore occult. It is even more magical than having witches for God is the infinite magician. The question, "Why is there something when there could have been nothing at all?" is just an attempt to make all that nonsense look intelligent.
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