If there is no God


#1

I have an issue. Please be patient while I work it out because it’s pretty deeply ingrained and I need to work it like a loose tooth before it comes free.

This is an imaginary conversation between me and a non-existant atheist (to better explain the point):

Atheist: Why do you believe in God? Don’t you want the freedom to do what you want without being afraid of some big judge in the sky sending you to Hell if you don’t follow his list of oppressive rules?

Me: In the first place, I have the freedom to do what I want. I choose to obey the Word because the Word has given us excellent rules to use to get along with everyone else. I have yet to meet an atheist who genuinely thinks that “thou shalt not kill” can be an optional rule ((yes, I know Peter Singer says so, but I haven’t -met- him, that’s the thing)).

In the second place, I’m not afraid of Hell because in Hell, you want to be separated from God. You have no desire to ive under His rules or to be sorry for your sins. That’s why you go there. But what I want to be sorry for my sins, and I want to pay back my mistakes, and I want to glorify God. I think I’m going to do a stint in Purgatory, but I don’t fear Hell because, quite frankly, I want to love God with all my heart and soul and mind and strenght. ((I know I fail, but I want to and God willing I will when I see His face)). I don’t presume that I’m going to Heaven, but I know that God is 100% fair, 100% just, and He judges you by exactly who you really are, so if I go to Hell, I’ll have my true self shown to me so I will see the absolute justice in that decision. But since God is a God of mercy, He won’t cast me into Hell unless there really is an excellent and perfeclty just reason for me to go.

In the third place His rules aren’t oppressive, and if there were no greater standard for judging good and bad, then you couldn’t assume his rules were “oppressive,” because you’d have no yard stick to measure “oppression” against. If we have good as a concrete fact and evil as a concrete fact, we must have something ultimately good to judge by, and that would be God.

Atheist: Okay, granted, but I don’t think there’s a God,and I don’t think there’s an afterlife. And the fact that as a Catholic you claim that you don’t know that you’re going to Heaven should make you wary of Hell, right? What about me, then? I have the ability to do what I want whenever I want, and I don’t have to be afraid of Hell because all that happens is that I just cease to exist.

Me: That’s very Socratic of you. I’m thinking more like Nietzsche, though. If there’s no God, then there’s nothing to grasp, and the world and this life become a joke.

Atheist: Absurdism, right. Well, from my perspective, life is only absurd if you make it absurd.

Me: No, life without something to center it on is absurd, whether you feel it is or not. And you can’t center your life on something that’s hollow, like your own self or on material possessions. You have to look outside the world if you want to have a strong center. Only by looking outside the world can you act impartially on what happens here - take good fortune and bad fortune both in stride, learn to live with people who are hard to live with, try to be a good person, etc. You have to have a reason. Just saying, “I feel like being a good person,” isn’t going to cut it, because what if you’re feelings change? Or what if someone else has the feeling he wants to be bad and does something horrible to you? Don’t you want both justice and a way to live with the consequesnces of his actions?

Atheist: That’s why we have laws and courts.

Me: But where did laws and courts originate?

(cont’d)


#2

Atheist: Naturally, they evolved from the need for people groups to work together to benefit society. Without commonly held beliefs and a legal system, people would act however they wanted to, there would be anarchy, and we’d all die out.

Me: Odd. Don’t animals survive without legal systems?

Atheist: Yes, but that’s because they have instincts desigend to keep them from killing each other.

Me: But how did those instincts come to be?

Atheist: They evolved.

Me: …Evolution is an engin. All engins need engineers. That’s the first thing. The second thing is that the instinct has to be programmed in somehow, but if a species comes to be without those instincts, then it means that a mutant strain of that species has to slowly develop instincts from a mutation, and if that happens, what’s to keep the animal species from killing itself off before it can get those instincts inbred? And yet all types of animals have been very successful, only dying out when outside influences killed them off. Then again, it goes back to your earlier statement, “Don’t you wish you were free from oppressive rules?”

Atheist: How do you mean?

Me: Humans are free from the types of instincts that animals have, or we are free to ignore our instincts, such as when we risk our lives to save other people, sometimes strangers, when our instincts are shouting, “run!” The laws that we have are constructed. They’re not inborn into us the way, say, a wolf’s pack instinct is. You said yourself that we had to come up with a way to keep people groups from killing each other off. That implies that we have an actual freedom of thought - true free will - for us to have to come up with constructed laws, rather than going by whatever we feel or are guided to by instinct. Behavoirists say that we have no free will, and that we act as our combined DNA, environment, and other affecting issues form us. And yet, if that were the case then we’d be inclined to, like wolves, kill off members who are degenerate as soon as they showed their degeneration, and live according to a strict internal law. But we don’t. We can chicken out of doing something bad at the last minute, or run headlong into evil with a smile, or not be at all swayed, according to how we respond to the situation, what we want to get out of it, and what we think we can get away with.

We’re not animals in that regard, because we don’t follow some kind of pre-designed path. Yeah, environment may play a part in how we devlope, along with genetics and so forth, but ultimately we all have to make our own decisions. That’s why there are laws - because we are free to do as we please, but by following these guidelines we’re guaranteed both that we will please God and that we will live well with other men.

I apologize for the lenght of this. There was something bugging me and I needed to get it out and be able to come back and see if I can add to it, and maybe see someone else’s brainstorms. Sorry. Feel free ( :smiley: ) to ignore this post.


#3

Hi Tabsie…I worked through all questioning-God’s-existence-thing years ago…and admire you for humbly and honestly asking your questions and expressing your objections in this way…but feeling a bit tired, so can’t think so well right now. I thought I’d print your posts and give them thought when I’m fresher! In the meantime hopefully maybe someone who’s awake and alert might respond. I don’t like people to feel bad if nobody’s answering serious requests! God bless you Trishie:)


#4

Hi tabsie3210

For me, the question of “Is there really a God” was somewhat bypassed from experiences in my childhood. Not entirely though, so I can sympathize and post my thoughts on this - maybe it’ll help, maybe it’ll only confuse you more. If that is the case, I am profoundly sorry.

Why are we here? How did we get here? What’s up?

Well, everything got here through evolution. (I believe this based on the science - NOT the scientist) Everything that is, except us. Not one single shred of evidence supports the idea even remotely that we evolved from apes or anything else. In fact, just the opposite - genetics has our parents narrowed down to 2 parents - human parents.

We are different from any other animal on the planet - and they have been around longer - therefore we are ‘special’. There is something innately different about us. We are separate from the natural world, able to live in concert with it - but not subject to it. Therefore we are (it seems) meant to take care of it. This is our place in the world.

Since we didn’t evolve from the rest of the world, but rather along with it (‘static’ evolution) this would denote that we came into being for a completely different reason, and the rest of the world is here in our service, and also to be served by us. I.E. as caretakers.

Which brings the question - why are we here then? Simply as caretakers? Well, it would seem that the world gets along just fine if we leave it alone, therefore that cannot reasonably be the purpose. Rather that we are to care for it as a result of our other activities, makes a more logical point.

So why then? To make work for ourselves? To create for ourselves a complicated world no one is really very happy with? Why aren’t we happy with it, after all this time, if THAT was our purpose? Wouldn’t that be something ‘programmed’ into us, naturally, like the rest of the world - if that were our purpose?

So we then turn to the world more fully, what makes* it* tick? Look at how everything runs so smoothly, like a concert. Look at the rest of the universe - everything has it’s place, and everything stays in it’s place performing it’s functions - even those we don’t really understand yet. Something made all this…something with intelligence, and so it must have made us too. Because we can recognize and appreciate it according to our own imperfect creations - except we are using what was already created before us.

So then we are here, at the point of something made us special, and we can recognize this fact. We can realize we are special but not why* we should know. Maybe then, that something wants us to know, and seek it. This would mean it cares about us, and wants to know us, and us it.

How? Now we come to Scripture, Love, Eternity.

Why does this something God) need us? That I have no clue about - perhaps only because we were created with choice. If we choose to Love, that is worth more than something created just to Love. God Loves us and gives us the choice to Love Him or reject Him, and to make the mistakes we need to make along the way, without having to destroy us - like the angels who have fallen.

Have I helped or hindered? I truly hope I have not hurt your searching.

Peace

John*


#5

Does reality exist?
yes

What is reality?

THe medium, background of Existence, the first existence, because that is her nature.

Is reality eternal?

Yes,

Is it sentient?

well we are, so it must be.

Did we just prove YHWH (Reality), wow.

newconscience.googlepages.com
scripturelink.googlepages.com/meernessoftruth
scripturelink.googlepages.com/search?cx=001763116401597409521%3Af7idlv7awxw&cof=FORID%3A11&q=God’s+existence#1334

God bless, Marc


#6

John:

‘Well, everything got here through evolution. (I believe this based on the science - NOT the scientist) Everything that is, except us. Not one single shred of evidence supports the idea even remotely that we evolved from apes or anything else. In fact, just the opposite - genetics has our parents narrowed down to 2 parents - human parents.’

Exactly. We’re exceptional creatures. We’re the only creatures that have the ability to reason about abstract concepts - animals can reason about concrete, but not the abstract, and other living things (plants, amoebas, etc) cannot reason at all. We also have an understanding of good and evil. Therefore, we can understand that particular yard stick.

'Since we didn’t evolve from the rest of the world, but rather along with it (‘static’ evolution) this would denote that we came into being for a completely different reason, and the rest of the world is here in our service, and also to be served by us. I.E. as caretakers.

Which brings the question - why are we here then? Simply as caretakers? Well, it would seem that the world gets along just fine if we leave it alone, therefore that cannot reasonably be the purpose. Rather that we are to care for it as a result of our other activities, makes a more logical point.’

There is a book called THE PRIVELAGED PLANET where a scientist and a theologan suggest that there is evidence that one purpose for humanity is actually to study science. Learning is what we’re here for, given evidence from the way the Earth is positioned - the one place in the universe that is situated for life is also situated for observing the universe scientifically.

‘Have I helped or hindered? I truly hope I have not hurt your searching.’

You’ve definately helped. Thank you.


#7

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