Religion has no answers?


Q. Where does the universe come from?

A. God created it  (so where did God come from? Who created God? What was there before God?)

Q. What happens after death?

A. There is an afterlife. (For ever? What on earth would we do for ever? Where is this place? What are we like there?)

Q. What happens if you break the religious laws?

A. You go to hell to be tormented and tortured forever. (Sounds like the most cruel torture thought up by a psychopath. An eternity of torture! Worse than any Hitler could conceive!)

Q. Do prayers get answered?

A. Yes (then why do the most pious people in the world live in such poverty?)

Q. Was the whole universe made just for human beings?

A. Yes (What all those zillions of galaxies for the benefit of a small tribe of apes living on a minor planet in a below average galaxy stuck out on a wisp of a spiral arm? – You must be joking!)

Q. Do we meet up with all our dead friends and relatives in heaven?

A. Yes  (what do they look like? Are they spirits? What age are they? Do they have memories? Is there reincarnation?)

Q Does God forgive all your sins?

A. Yes (What even if I went out and raped and ate babies I could ask for forgiveness and go to heaven while a non-believer who has led a saintly life is doomed to ever-lasting hell-fire?)

The more I look into religion the more it looks like a human construct of wishful thinking.

In truth we are big apes whose brain has evolved to look for patterns and find answers. When confronted with the big frightening questions we are consoled by answers that satisfy us. When the simple answers are two transparent we make more and more layers of complex answers until we befuddle ourselves in mystery.

Seemingly some people believe that this world we live in is not real. There is a mystical element to life that we cannot understand. God’s purpose for us is beyond our understanding.

I say that sounds very convenient.

I do not believe in God. I find the majestic wonder of the universe awe-inspiring and I want to understand it, marvel at it and find out how it works. I believe it started with the Big Bang that had no need of a creator. I believe I am an ape who has evolved from other forms of life over billions of years. My body is flawed because it is an accident. My wonderful consciousness is no less incredible because it is the product of evolution. Indeed I find that even more stupendous.

Life is wonderful and I savour it. It will end and I will no longer be aware. My aim is to enjoy my life and seek fulfilment in creativity, exploration, improving things for other apes and animals and wondering at the beauty and awe. That’s enough for me.

13 thoughts on “Religion has no answers?

  1. The first question is actually a disproof of atheism.

    For if there is no Creator, then the universe just happened all by itself.

    The fundamental dogma of atheism, that everything just happened all by itself, is obviously ridiculous, therefore making atheism obviously ridiculous.

    Adding to the ridiculous nature of atheism are the obvious answers to the simple questions:

    1. Where did God come from?
    2. Who created God?
    3. What was there before God?

    But understanding the obvious answers requires the understanding of the difference between finite and infinite.

    God, by nature and definition is infinite.

    All three questions require that God become finite.

    Consequently, all three questions are absurd, examples of what the ancient Greeks called sophistry.

    By the way, Saint Thomas Aquinas addressed this particular bit of sophistry back in the Middle Ages demonstrating that to be atheists requires either possessing a poor education or an incomplete one.

  2. You see I cannot see any problem with something happening by itself. That makes more sense to me than something that does not exist making it.
    I love infinity. It is beyond the understanding of the human mind. It is easy to say God is infinite. That explains nothing.
    All questions are absurd by definition. Sophistry is a term applied to deal with these very type of questions.
    I have had a good education and have an enquiring mind. I still have not heard any proof for their being a god other than it is convenient for the human psyche to believe there is one.

  3. On further reflection I can see why you might find the idea of the universe blinking into existence without a creator a ridiculous notion. It is such an unbelievable thing to happen that it is ridiculous. I am surprised that you do not find the idea of a god who is infinite and has always existed and just decided to make a universe equally ridiculous.
    I’m afraid I’m still with Stephen Hawkins on this one. There is nothing in the laws of the universe or the Big Bang itself that necessitates a creator. Some things just happen. They don’t have a reason, purpose or initiator.
    That is very hard for the human mind to come to terms with. Hence we create our gods who are infinite.
    Questions dealing with god, infinity, time or an infinite universe are by nature absurd. That’s the fun it them. It’s when people get stuck on answers that the trouble begins.
    Religion has no answers for me. Yet people still kill others who do not adhere to the same tale.

    1. Opher,

      God is not a religious concept, but a result of reason.

      The ancient Greeks labeled God the First Cause because, they reasoned, if we follow each effect to its cause, back and back, eventually we arrive at the First Cause which is God.

      It’s as simple and as reasonable as that.

      Other attributes of God, the First Cause, include, eternal, all-knowing, and all-powerful which are also self-evident. That is, they derive from reason.

      1. Thank you for your comment. I love a good debate. I respect your point of view but can see that from my perspective it is flawed.
        If I trace the all the effects back to their beginning we arrive at the Big Bang. Of course the Greeks knew nothing about that. They were not too advanced in the realm of science. The Greeks and you then make a big supposition that god was involved. I see no basis for that supposition. You infer that because the universe came into being some creator made it. That is human thinking. There is no evidence for that supposition. It is not rational. You then go on to give attributes to an infinite being. You assume he is eternal. You assume he is all-knowing. You assume he is all-powerful. Where do those assumptions come from? They are not rational. They are inferences.
        It is extremely hard to remove ones thinking from the cultural and religious indoctrination we are subject to.
        If we were born in different times in different countries we would be believing the Sun was a God or in Baal, Isis, Woden or Zeus.
        I do not believe you, the Greeks or St Thomas Aquinas were being rational. St Thomas was the product of a theocracy. I am far more educated than he ever was. His view of the universe was rooted in irrationality. Neither science nor technology had really got going in his day. My qualifications are numerous and from good universities (London and Hull). My IQ of 159 suggest intelligence lurks within my grey matter. I have studied religion and find it irrational.
        I believe your suppositions, inferences and ‘rational’ views are the result of assumptions you make because of the culture we swim in. We have been brought up to believe these things.
        Freud said that all religion was a mass psychosis. Hawkins, probably the greatest mind who has ever lived, said there is no need for god in the Big Bang.

  4. Opher,

    The Big Bang is actual scientific evidence that God exists since it proves that the universe had a beginning and therefore a First Cause which was God.

  5. It is quite possible that the universe had a beginning. Having a beginning does not in any way infer a god. The first cause was likely to have been the spontaneous result of a collision between other universes in the polyverse or it could have been a spontaneous change in the singularity in a black hole.
    Your supposition is invalid. That is not rational. That thinking comes from a theocratic line of thought.
    The Big Bang is not evidence for god. Nowhere is god supposed or proven. Read Stephen Hawkins theory of Time.
    The Big Bang has not need for a cause. If there was a cause it does not have to be a divine cause. The cause came out of the laws pertaining to the universe itself. Your inferences are flawed.
    I have started to read your blog with great interest. I do not agree with much of it but it is fun.

    1. Opher,

      Science has proven that the universe began with the Big Bang.

      If something has a beginning, then it had a cause.

      Therefore it follows reasonably that the cause of everything was God, the First Cause.

      Atheists believe the way they do because they reject reason and science.

      You admitted that clearly when you stated, in your own words, “The Big Bang has not need for a cause.”

      As far as Hawking goes, recent findings in cosmology have him cleaning cake out of his undies.

      1. What you infer is not reasonable. It is nothing more than a belief.
        You are entitled to believe that if you want but that does not make it true.
        I do not think you are reading my responses. There are many possible causes for the Big Bang. Having a beginning does in no way prove that it was God. That is not rational at all. That is pure belief. I deal with science and reason. You deal with belief. Your logic is not rational.
        There are many theories floating around in cosmology. We are still living in the Dark Ages at the very beginning of science. We don’t know much yet but if we have time and don’t manage to destroy ourselves in the meantime, we will find the answers to a lot more things.
        Stephen Hawking is probably the greatest mind of this age. If he chooses to eat cake out of his pants he will. I am sure he is as excited as me to find out more about this incredible universe. One thing is for sure and that is that we have not found any evidence of god in it yet.
        I am open to hear valid reasons but you are merely repeating the same opinion that I had refuted.

      2. Opher,

        What I am expressing here comes from our Western Heritage which is based on those who developed reason in the first place (the ancient Greeks).

        You demonstrate that atheism is a rejection of our Western Heritage and therefore a rejection of reason.

  6. The Greeks weren’t the font of all wisdom. They were fairly ignorant. We took a lot of our foundations of Western democracy and the philosophy that began the questioning that led to scientific principle. We owe a big debt to the Greeks and I do not reject that at all. The Greeks knew nothing about the big bang and their views on gods were very strange indeed. I think if anybody down your street was to practice their prevailing religious beliefs they would be considered very weird. Fortunately we do not recognise Zeus, Hera, Apollo, Artemis and all the others these days. They have largely been condemned to the dustbins of antiquity along with all the others gods and goddesses before them.
    I acknowledge my heritage but am not a slave to it. We took the good and built on it. We rejected the bad.
    I value scientific practice. Atheism is not a rejection of Western Heritage. Why would you think it is?
    I repeat – what you say is neither logic or reason; it is belief.

  7. Arrogant explanations fall down when they are confronted with a stream of meticulous questions. These questions expose the many miniature holes in this arrogant explanation and when there are too many holes and holes become too big, an arrogant explanation crumbles and sprinkles. ”Just ask 100 difficult questions”. The most successful explanations are those that survive the biggest number of meticulous questions. I have found that truth is usually subtle, it requires very artistic sensitivity, intelectual profoundity, open eyes and honesty, so truth is really a noble thing requiring noble character. Nature hid its secrets cleverly – imposers and brutes cannot reach it, they must first change themselves.

    1. An open mind and willingness to question are the basis of progress and intelligence. We certainly do not have all the answers and probably never will. To adopt the absurd merely because the answer is not manifest is the sign of lazy thinking and ignorance.
      Thanks for your input – best wishes Opher

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