Throughout the latest three years I have made been thinking a lot about the existence of God.
My conclusion is that there are thousands of Gods – and I don’t believe in any of them.
#1 THE CONCEPT OF FAITH
What does it mean to have faith?
There are thousands of different Gods. There are thousands of different interpretations of Gods will. There are hundreds of interpretations of all the interpretations. The belief in God is very subjective, and it varies from culture to person. What God you happens to believe in is dependent in which time period, in what culture, you grow up. The concept of faith is not identical to facts. If we try to approach God from a scientific point of view, we reach an instant impasse. Science can’t prove the existence of God, neither can anything else. The only way to get in contact with God is by your private gutfeelings.
It follows that evidence is replaced with faith and trust in God. Some religious people think it's kind of like love: we can’t not provide evidence for love, but it does not mean that love does not exist. The approach to god seen in a similar manner.
Faith does not only apply to God, though. In our daily lives do we take lots of decisions whose outcomes we are not sure. However, there is an obvious difference: we may have good reasons to believe in something, and we may have bad reasons to believe in something. Most of what we experience in the real-world is based on observation, and from observation we can draw conclusions. The keywords for having a good reason to believe in something is, shortly, to respect the rules of logic, probability, and existance of evidence. Faith in God does not really favour any of these.
#2 CONTACT WITH GOD?
The goal with faith is to come closer to God. Our contact with God is often based on ancient books that were written by savages. We then choose to use these books as the core of what we should have faith in. We relate them to our own life. Of course, the God that we happen to be grown up with, is the true God, in the same way as the interpretation of the Bible we happens to know is the true and only correct interpretation of the Bible.
#3 EXPERIENCES OF GOD
Many religious people claim that they’ve had an experience of God. Again, none of this can be controlled, and there are indeed a lot of psychological explanations to feelings that we have. As with all kinds of faith, placebo effects is also common. What we can conclude is that there is no more than personal evidence, rumors, and anecdotal evidence for the existence of God. A part from that, there is absolutely no evidence for the existence of God at all. As soon as we test prayers under controlled forms they do not work.
RELIGION IS DUBIOUS
When you believe in something without evidence then you can pretty much justify anything. These superstitious, private hunches are for some people foundation of suicide bombers, killing of witches, racism, homophobia, anti-Semitism, misogyni, child abuse. Religions tells us to be satisfied with lack of evidence, errors in reasoning, and throughout history it have killed millions of people and blocked the progression of science and reason.
There is nothing beautiful about it. It is no more than a corruption of the intellect. Religion makes people depraved. Various studies suggest that people who rely more on intuition tends to have stronger superstitious beliefs, than those who tends to be more analytic, deductive and rationally thinking. This may explain why other studies shows that religious people tends to have lower IQ than non-religious people. This may be due to the fact that religious people tend to rely on their private hunches rather than to rely on logic and respect for evidence.
Then of course, even extremely intelligent people fall victims to superstition, and that pretty much tells how decisive religion may be. If religion and superstition can make highly-educated and intelligent people fly planes into skyscrapers, or reject the evolution theory, imagine what religion can do to those who are worse off. People like Fred Phelps is a good example of how religions affects people like a brainvirus.
I do not simply understand why someone would waste their life on religion or other superstitious nonsense.
The worst part of religion is that it demands the societies respect. There's been talk in the FN to embrance blasphemy laws. Religion constantly attack science, medicine, reason, and the society as a whole, trying to force its faith upon everyone else even by law.
What is your take?
Why do you believe?
Why don’t you believe?