It Starts

When studying Theology, Christian theology in particular, the professors teach that there are a couple of prerequisite thoughts. First, God exists. Second, God has chosen to reveal himself to his creation. Third, humans (his creation) can apprehend this (his) revelation.

The professor mentioned that he uses “apprehend” because “comprehend” could be interpreted to mean fully understand the revelation, and that’s just not the case. We are incapable of fully understanding God, he says. He then mentioned he isn’t in love with “apprehend” and is open to suggestions.

My suggestion? “Conceive”. A necessary component of theology, then, is that humans are able to “conceive” of God’s self-revelation to them.

I like this word because it acknowledges that humans are the ones who create the concept of God. Some may fear admitting that humans “create” God, but I stick with St. Anselm whose irritating ontological proof of God goes something like this: “Things exist in one of two realities. Things are ideas or things exist. If God is the most powerful Being, then a God that exists is necessarily more powerful than a God that is just an idea. Therefore, God exists.”

So you heathens have before you two options. Given that you are aware of the concept of “God” or an “ultimate reality” of sorts, you have to choose between two options. One option is that God is an idea conceived by humans bent on deceptively obtaining power over other humans; the other option is that God is an idea conceived by humans because God, in fact, exists and seeks relationship with his creation–in other words, God wasn’t conceived by humans but revealed himself to his creation.

For me, the “created for deceptively obtaining power” conception of God is a little too “black helicopter/Illuminati”. I’ve been a part of some very well-funded, very intelligent organizations and the simple fact is we’re all just people making our way along the journey of life. Nobody is secretly controlling shit. Who has time for that?

Ergo, God–or an ultimate reality if you’re anti-the-word-God–exists.

The next question is, “What is his character?”

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8 comments

  1. RON PRITCHETT

    Hi Pete – There you are! Seems you went quiet for a time – started to worry. God’s Character? There is a long line of people wondering about that.

    As I sort things out at age 66, given current madness and historical wisdom, here is what I believe for us naked apes:

    God: * has not much use for innocence * prefers life over death, but death ain’t no big whup, either * provides guidance when asked (I am nothing unless I ask) * makes pain mostly temporary; makes regret mostly permanent * has a need for us to 1) believe; 2) behave as instructed – otherwise we wouldn’t be here * rewards discipline * gave us a universe of infinite resources – dares us to figure it out * gives us a world of overwhelming beauty when we open up to it * gave us elements of a universe we can comprehend; gave us also an unmeasurable piece – call it imagination or metaphysics * guarantees a quick death if we violate the physical framework given to us (you know, gravity and such) * allows us to know God more as we know humility * delivered the Idea of Jesus, even if the man Jesus was a mortal, clever politician * gives us joy as humans when we live as above.

    …and has a sense of humor too, for when I hit “send” today there will likely be another thought shooting across my brain cells.

    Best wishes – see ya’ around.

    Ron

    Date: Sun, 27 Sep 2015 13:36:05 +0000 To: pritchett61@msn.com

    Liked by 2 people

  2. noelleg44

    As a science student, I was challenged by my philosophy prof, who told me that science and God were incompatible. I tried to reason with him in my end of term paper on my personal philosophy, but got a D. I’m still trying to figure that one out: if anything scientist have MORE reasons to believe in God because they see the complexity of life in all its glory, much of it still beyond our understanding.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Daedalus

      Hello Pete, Good to hear from you again. I don’t follow your logic. It smacks of the bootstrap. To reach your conclusion, you insist that there are only two options for conceiving God…maybe three. Then, you rule out the objectionable ones to prove your point. What if God has many faces and forms, and we as individuals only get to see the one we’re ready to perceive?

      Liked by 2 people

  3. A_Female

    I think you said it plainly: “We’re all just people making our way along the journey of life.”
    I’m basically agnostic and I think man may have created God as a way to help explain all the things that could not be explained or understood. This universe is bigger than any of us and I can’t imagine what it must have been like in a world without science and reason. Religion must have brought so much relief.

    As civilization develops and becomes more advanced, we’re more and more able to explain and understand the world around us, so the idea of God fills in the spaces where we are still questioning.

    I don’t know that I believe we are alone, but I don’t know that there is one being with that much power either. Seems more of a human concept to me that power should be so concentrated and centralized.

    Having said all that, the Pope visited my city this weekend, and I was deeply touched by the love, optimism and kindness his presence brought out in others. It was hard not to be emotional and hopeful. If belief in a God could encourage that kind of widespread response more often and with more consistency, we’d all go to church, all the time.

    Thanks for making me think 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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