Facts and cosmological arguments

-Science for us reduces to facts and laws while for Aristotle it reduced to axioms or the self evident.

-“Brute fact” is redundant or perhaps just a clarification. Fact is contingent givenness taken as a first cause in an explanation.

-If some fact is necessary and the universe is any given totality of facts then the universe is necessary. So fact-based science rules out proving the existence of God from contingency, where contingency is understood broadly to include any cosmological argument from potency, having an agent cause, contingency properly, participated being, causal subordination.

-Fact-based science reduces to sensation, which is proper to natural science. So a properly natural science can’t prove the existence of God.

-But cosmological arguments do take facts as principles! They start with the givenness of motion, for example. But a fact in a cosmological argument is explanandum and not explanans. What is a given to sensation is not a given to the intellect.

-“Givenness” is whatever a cognitive power takes as immediately the case, but for sensation as such this is not rational, i.e. brute since sense givens are inherently contingent in one way or another, and often in more than one way. If nothing else, there was a time when we did not sense them and a time when we will no longer. Human beings can recognize this about sensation and even presuppose it, but the very act of doing so has already transcended limitation to bruteness. To recognize fact at all requires the possibility of at least two different kinds of sciences.

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