People have speculated (also before the movie “Matrix”) if this world is actually a simulation. It is said that, if one finds a “limit of resolution” in physics, that might be a hint that this world is indeed simulated. Now the quantization of energy could actually be this limit …
When taking this idea theologically, it is easy to get on the idea that we “are simulated by God”, either by being run on some external machine that God created, or by being a thought of God. This idea would explain how miracles are possible: these might happen if God modifies the current state of the simulation. However, this idea is quite demanding: it needs a “hyperversum” with powerful physics that can run such a mega-simulation, and the attributes and physics of that universum (in which God would be living) would be utterly unknown. Also, we would have no idea of the substance of God, or how he can interact with us (his “simulation”).
But here is a new thought. Not just we, but also God might be “simulated”. Now of course this word loses its meaning if everything is “simulated” (what would be the real thing then?); one should say instead that there are pre-existing, eternal law of physics that can be compared to the laws needed for information processing, i.e. they would work as a processor. And everything that “is” would be a “program” running in this processor, including God, and us.
It seems that this model can explain everything (it even can explain everything that can be ever imagined, which could be thought to be a problem, but is rather a necessity as God is omnipotent). Some of the consequences:
- God would be the “eternal, and only eternal” program running in this processor. As both God and the processor are eternal, it is conceptually better to say that God includes also the processor (which is an idea near to pantheism, but here, compatible with the personal God of the Bible). See also what Paul once quoted: “For in him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28).
- God would be the only “omnipotent” program. A program running in a special mode, comparable to a kernel.
- Because everything imaginable can be expressed in information (see e.g. fiction), everything is, in principle, possible if physics is just information processing. Which is the explanation for every kind of miracle. The normal course of the world would however be guided by a program, which limits possibilities to some orchestrated set of concepts, just like every program does (this time, resulting in the physics we know).
- This also conforms to the Bible teaching that God is a spirit (the “logos”: something immaterial that is mainly about information), that demons are spirits, and that human beings have a spirit.
- This also conforms to the findings in psychology that mental illness like depression seems to be a “self-supporting / self-stable / self-reinforcing” set of thoughts that one might have started by thinking them too much at one occasion. This would be a malicious “sub-program” in our model here, comparable to a computer virus. And it would be not really different from a demon (which might be an “unerasable, self-transferring, non-replicating malicious program”); this is supported by the fact that both these self-supporting thought cycles and demons have the same effect, that is, mental illnesses.
This new idea that both we and God are programs in the same “processing universe” is preferable to the idea that we are thoughts of God, because of Occams Razor: we need much less concepts in the new idea.