Believe What You Will: Part 1   Leave a comment

I embarked on a quest recently. I really wanted to listen to, and read from great minds. I hoped to glean wisdom and knowledge from these “knowing” individuals. The reason was primarily that I wanted to know the “whys” of what I believe as well as the why-nots. It has been enlightening to say the least, but it has also been incredibly frustrating.

I have been watching debates online between Atheists and those that would try to provide sufficient evidence to reason that there is a God. Let me summarize all that I have learned from these discussions, debates, and presentations; There may be sufficient evidence to convince you personally that there is or is not a God, but the heart of the matter is that you will believe that which you choose to believe.

The Atheists openly admit that they cannot disprove the existence of a God and more often than not the ones I have listened to will simply not admit that there is because of the moral ramifications within doing so. If there is a God and He/She/It is the creator of all things then it opens a host of questions that many of the atheists do NOT want to face. Why did God create us? Why are we here? What does God want from us? Will we ever see God and if/when we do what will God do or say? In short, what is our response to God?

For the person who accepts the idea that there is God, everything makes sense in a way that is conducive to God’s existence. Everything points to God. For the one who does not believe, everything looks different. That person does not see God’s fingerprints in a sunset or a newborn baby. And those two kinds of people do not understand each other. The believers try to convince that God exists and the Atheists openly scorn them as less than scholarly. One thing I did learn is that the Atheists see belief in God as being in opposition to science. This is not true. At all. At the same time the believers see the atheists as being the cold, scientist kind. This also is not true. The fact of the matter is that though some are trying to make an argument on cold facts and evidence, it is obvious that there is no evidence that proves or disproves God and so neither side is science based. Both are completely based in Philosophy and simply how the information is observed/interpreted based on your personal biases.

What I learned when listening to these debates was that more often than not it was a refusal to accept the idea of God based on what the evidence of God is in people. Christopher Hitchens is incredibly outspoken on his belief that there is no God. One argument he presents is that if you look at God’s people, the church, they are responsible for all kinds of atrocities all throughout history. And so why would he want any part of that? He is completely correct. The church in its many forms has seized power and influence and used it to force it’s dogma down the throats of the people for centuries while leaving millions dead in its attempt. The same is being done today as a result of religions at each other’s throats or as a result of ethnicity. The problem with that argument is that when reading the bible (i.e. the “rule book” from God) there exists no demands to convert anyone by force and in fact all that the church is guilty of is in direct opposition to what Jesus asked of all people; Love the Lord with all your heart, mind, and body, and love your neighbor as yourself. So to sum that up He said to love God and love people. Violence does not fit into that in any way. In fact there is no room in that directive for hurtful words or judgments. IN FACT it is clearly pointed out that people do not need us to say ANYTHING! They will see God by our love for each other. So Mr. Hitchens is completely correct in his assessment of the appearance of religion, and quite honestly he has a completely sound argument for avoiding and even despising religion, be it Christianity or Islam or what have you.

But like I stated we are all making a choice and therefore choosing to believe. Because the evidence does not support or deny God then any choice regarding God as to whether you believe or not is just that; a choice. That means that your choice is made through faith. You have to believe that what you are subscribing to is true. Thus all decisions in this matter fall under the realm of faith and belief. Not science and logic. In fact the recent surge of philosophy has pretty much reduced all logic and science to faith and choice. For better or for worse.

Let us assume that all religions involving God or a god are accurate. All religions require that you yourself believe or acknowledge the deity of God or a god, and thus you yourself are responsible for your belief. Any sect of Christianity involves believing that there is a God and also requires belief in His son Jesus. But nowhere, in the entire bible, does it command us to be a part of a church. Yes it says to get together with other believers but it does not command us to find a building full of people that believe exactly what you believe and subscribe to their whims and ways. There are no commands regarding candles and tracts and going door to door or arguing with those that oppose your faith. In fact it says “to live at peace with all people”. Basically Hitch’s argument is just an excuse. This seems to be the underlying theme within most who oppose a belief in God. The simple fact of the matter is that believing would cause a moral/ethical battle that they are not willing to wage. It appears to be a lack of discipline. I want it my way and that “God part” cramps my style. As a result it (God) then makes no sense.

All receiving of information and acquiring of knowledge starts with the exposure to the information and then a decision on the receiver as to whether they will acknowledge the information as true (or accurate if you prefer the word). Then you move on to the next piece of information. There are some things we acknowledge as true and they serve as a foundation of blocks that we build our reasoning upon but it all comes back to believing. You can thank philosophy for that as well as the fact that many crucial parts of all science and religion are simply accepted as true. Follow the link to hear for yourself.

All of this is a very brief summary of extensive research and reasoning by many men that could make your head explode if you could even hope to understand them at all. I simply want to point out the apparent reason for all their work and words. If you can logically reason within yourself and come to a conclusion determining the existence of God then great! I just challenge you to ask yourself WHY you believe what you are choosing to believe. This takes honesty and a true scholarly-liberal mind. To be honest I haven’t seen much of it within any liberal that I have ever had the pleasure of being near and especially when on the wrong end of their opinion. Most people just aren’t comfortable with the idea that their beliefs are opinions. Part 2 will be more specific as to the consequences of your opinion of whether God does or does not exist.



Posted July 19, 2009 by john b in Uncategorized

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