Passing on this video posted today on openculture.com.
In considering the cosmological argument on the God episode, we made no attempt to say how or if modern cosmology affects the challenge we discussed in comparing the mental satisfaction of “the universe was caused by God, who is special and doesn’t need a cause in turn” vs. “the origin of the universe is a brute fact.”
30 minutes in or so is where he gets to why the universe could have come from nothing on the assumption that the universe is not curved, and in the 10 minutes after that he explains why we think that it is in fact not curved. Starting at 45 minutes he addresses some of the physics-related challenges by creationists that the universe must be designed, including discussion of the anthropic principle that we (and Mackie) dismissed on episode in the context of physics.
Whether or not you think Krauss’s account does anything to resolve the dilemma we were considering on the episode, it’s good to have the latest physical theories in mind when considering these questions.
I find it amusing that both the scientist here and the theologians declare that their side properly acknowledges the mystery at the heart of things and accuses the other side of being arrogant our epistemic status: the theologian because he thinks he’s been given all the answers by scripture and the scientist because he thinks that real knowledge is attainable by humans without divine intervention.