10 May, 2008


[I know the proper saying is "...tree." The reason I modified it will become clear.]

I was sent an e-mail that had a bunch of cool pictures of rock formations that looked like animals. After the pictures was this plea: to take ONE MINUTE to say the lord's prayer, to not be ashamed of your love for god, and to show it by passing the chain e-mail along.

My response to the sender:

[The creation of every formation is] explicable by natural phenomena. Cool though.

I take this e-mail as an attempt to illustrate that god is the creator of all things, and only god could make the rocks, etc look the way they do. And that its creation is beautiful.

The flip side being: If god is the creator of all things we must also give ONE MINUTE to god for the Holocaust.

We can't just give god credit for the beautiful things; it has to be given credit for everything. Otherwise it is not god because it is not all-powerful.

One can make an argument that god is unknowable, and all the evil that is done is done for a purpose only god can understand; the beauty must be taken with the horror. And one cannot lay blame for evil on free will -- on people choosing to do evil -- because mankind was created in god's image and likeness.

Further, just as people are capable of wrong, so is god. A reading of the Old Testament (Torah, Hebrew Bible) shows that god is capable of error -- it admits to erring on a few occasions (oops! Hundreds of thousands dead!). Ergo, he is not all-knowing. God endorses wholesale slaughter of entire cities and the men, women and children within them. It endorses slavery. On and on.

God made a rainbow, and rainbows are beautiful things. Before it made that, though, it wiped out almost every single living thing on earth, without remorse. The people drowned to death -- one of the worst ways to go.

The foundation of my life is, irrefutably, my parents, and I give thanks to them for my life. I don't have god's genes.

And you'll excuse me for being ashamed of a mass-murderer. I'm ashamed of Ted Bundy, and he killed far fewer people than god ever did.

You can choose to divorce the Old Testament (Torah, Hebrew Bible) from the New Testament, but then you are not following the god of Jesus, the Jew, who gathered followers through his superior understanding and (strict) interpretation of the Torah.

Either god has done it all or he has done nothing. We can't pick and choose.

To quickly sum things up and give you the short version of the argument against the existence of the Christian god:

1. If evil exists and God is omniscient, then God knows about it.
2. If God knows about evil and is omnibenevolent, then he wants to prevent it.
3. If God wants to prevent evil and is omnipotent, then he can prevent it.
4. Therefore, if God is omniscient, omnibenevolent, and omnipotent, then evil should not exist.

The Christian god is defined as being omniscient, omnibenevolent and omnipotent. He is everywhere, he is all-good, he is all-powerful. But he cannot be all these things if evil exists, which it does.

But if "evil" is really "good" -- a necessary part of god's giving mankind free will, etc -- then there is no point in worshiping such an entity, for why kneel to something that allows us to suffer? That makes us suffer?

And if the devil causes evil, then god is not omnipotent, for he cannot defeat the devil. If god chooses not to defeat the devil, then he is not omnibenevolent. If god is unaware of the devil, then he is not omniscient.

Sorry to belabor the subject. I added this last piece because I needed to address specifically Christian conceptions of god, and not just the god of the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible/Torah, who was undoubtedly evil (commanding the rape of 32,000 women from one city, for just one example).

Still, to not-love the god of the Old Testament is to not-love the god of Jesus, the Jew.

And to love the god of the Old Testament is to love a dictator/fascist who commanded the slaughter of hundreds of thousands, the rape of hundreds of thousands, the enslavement of hundreds of thousands, to love a being that did not frown upon the incest committed by Abraham's (the patriarch of Judeo-Christianity) daughters, and on and on.

Personally, I'm incredibly relieved that such a god does not exist.

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