God and Meaning
I was going to do a series about meaning but as I was studying and writing the series on morality I realized that there is a whole lot of overlap in the 2 subjects. They are both based on values which would explain that. Many of the things I wrote about morality could also be written about meaning.
One example of this is in the question of God being the answer to meaning. Just as in thinking about morality, the question is obvious here as well – where did God get his meaning? If he is not disturbed by the fact that there isn’t something outside of himself that provides meaning then why should we be? Why does adding another conscious entity to the equation solve the problem of meaning? If it turns out that there is no God does that remove all meaning from our lives? I discussed these…
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Difficult to comment on this because I am not an Atheist.
Although because it is loosely a Theology written by an Atheist, I am not surprised by the fatal flaws in his/her thinking.
4I’m not sure I follow.
“If he is not disturbed by the fact…” Anthropomorphisizing is a fatal flaw in such endeavors.
Really? Why is that?
As a non-Christian deist, I actually have no problem with your formulation, but saying that God isn’t like us opens up problems like not being able to create a universal morality, or indeed, any objective morality. It also seems to be counter-Biblical, as in the made in God’s image thing.
True ben, God is not like us. However, we are like him, as in, since we are a creation, we reflect God. Actually, the translation from the Hebrew is God made man’s soul in his image.
This is the reason why we have a universal morality. For instance when Cain slew Abel, there weren’t any laws, or police to arrest and judge him. Yet he was knowledgeable of wrong-doing.
However, what I was saying was I disagreed with that post because you can’t stick God into a “What-if” situation and try to assign a human psychology to him.
This lack of a human psychology and personality is one of the stark differences between the pagan and Judeo-Christian tradition. Most people think that we just dropped a bunch of gods in favor of one. However, the pagans used to “humanize” the gods with very human personalities.
Compare that pagan sentiment to Isaiah 55:9 “As the heavens are higher the Earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
I guess I’m confused. If god is not like us but we are like him, that seems contradictory.
The problem with universal morality becomes the following:
If we can’t understand God’s morality, because it’s so far above us, how are we supposed to apply it to new situations, or even mundane situations?
If, on the other hand, whatever God does is, by definition, moral, then how are we supposed to figure out the existence of evil if God is also the creator?
I get around these questions by saying that morality is not universal.
“If God is not like us…” I’m just trying to point out the fact that we are the created ones. All created matter reflects God. It’s the reason why the Church started the scientific disciplines, and continue to fund good science to this day.
“If we can’t understand God’s morality…” I never said we can’t understand anything. We can only understand what our limited physical brains can handle. We’ve been given enough to guide us through.
“…how are we supposed to apply it to new situations…” The CCC (Catechism of the Catholic Church) has most of these answers. Great theologians and philosophers have worked on these questions for two-thousand years. Things have been revealed through the ages by the prophets of old. Our relationship with God has been evolving.
So universal but evolving?
Perhaps “evolving” was not the best choice of words. Let’s say augmenting. After all, compare something the Catechism of the Catholic Church to the amount of revelation given to Abraham. It started out as a small seed and then we (humanity) have been spoon fed ever since.