The existence of God is one of the greatest and oldest controversies that have plagued man since the beginning of humanity. Appearing over time multiple positions for and against increasing the controversy every day. For this reason, in this article we will explore in depth this topic that manages to keep more than one sleepless, describing the most important debates that have taken place over time, the positions that exist and the proof that God exists.
existence of god
The existence of God is one of the questions that all people, regardless of their origin, race, ethnicity or time in which we have lived, have asked ourselves. I know that for many it is difficult to admit that at some point they came to question the existence of God, but the reality is that all of us at some point in time stop to meditate a little on this subject and question what we have been taught, what we have learned and what we believe.
If you are reading this article it is because you are curious about the subject or have doubts about your beliefs; where you may question the existence of God. In both cases you are in the right place, because we will navigate a little about the different positions that exist and the arguments on which they are based. “It is important to note that this article does not seek to defend or support the existence of god nor to refute it. It simply works as a compendium of knowledge on the subject that allows the reader to inform himself and make his own judgment based on his beliefs » .
But to be able to get into the matter, you need to have knowledge of some basic terms that are vital to understand all the information that we will talk about later:
It could be said that this word is the basis of everything that comes after, since it is a term used in philosophy to describe the relationship between entities and how is the perception of said relationship. Put more simply, it is the way we perceive reality. It could be defined through the following question: What do we call reality or what is reality? From the point of view of the relationship between entities, where we have an object (the reality that is appreciated) and a subject (the observer of reality), we are talking about how that reality is appreciated or seen.
Obviously this question has an individual nuance and a group one; because although we can share ideas and general thoughts, everyone perceives and defines reality differently. The reason is simple: everyone has been shaped by different upbringings, stimuli, experiences, etc. This makes our social construction of reality different from what others may have, but at the same time; that there are many similarities and agreements. When we mention that this term is key, we say it because our perception of what is and is not real? It is what inclines to a greater or lesser extent our belief in the existence of God.
If ontology answers the question of what is reality? epistemology responds to how do we approach it? How do we apprehend it? A simple way to define it is that epistemology is related to the scope that the subject can have to approach the object.
This is important because depending on the philosophical position where we stand, we will not only accept or reject the existence of God; but we will also define whether we are able to reach it, touch it, make contact with it in this earthly world or not.
For example: if we consider that God exists physically, that he has a real body, occupies an amount of space in the universe and is made up of matter (ontology) and that in turn; we can approach it and touch it, make contact and feel it (epistemology). We would be defining a God with a physical body that walks around within reach of us. On the other hand, if our ontological position is that God exists but does not have a physical body, but that he is everywhere and in all things; and our epistemology is that we can contact him through prayer, communion, etc. We define a very different version of God.
Theism, Atheism and Agnosticism
Theism consists of a philosophical position that supports the existence of God, on the contrary; atheism defends that God does not exist. Now, there is a third current known as agnosticism where what is denied is not the existence of God; but our capabilities and limitations as human beings together with the possibilities of knowing the existence of God. This last position is often mistakenly confused with atheism. Although agnostics often believe that perhaps God does exist, but being an omnipotent being is impossible for us to access.
If they compare the differences between atheism and agnosticism taking into account the definitions of ontology and epistemology, they will observe that ontologically they may be the same but epistemologically they change their positions. The existence of god is real but what changes is our ability to apprehend it.
There have been many thinkers, theologians and philosophers who have taken different positions according to the philosophical doctrines to which they have been attached, making the debate much more complex than the mere answer of whether or not God exists. Since other questions also come into play, such as: if it exists, how do we approach it? Are we able to obtain evidence of his existence? Are we made in the image and likeness of God? etc.
Based on the above, we visualize that the thing is more complex than the mere question of whether or not there is a god, since metaphysical aspects are addressed: does he exist or does he not exist?; anthropological, what is its shape, does it have the same characteristics as those of a human being? Empirical, is there real evidence of its existence? and gnoseological, how are we able to know it?
The different thinkers who have immersed themselves in this debate make use of deductive and inductive reasoning, as well as empiricism to present their arguments for or against. Despite all this, even today there is no definition or position that is universally accepted. On the other hand, there are some definitions of god that are not at all specific and end up being incongruous to the point of not having a reality that fits them.
Historically, the debate about the existence of God has been largely governed by religious institutions. Fulfilling the role on many occasions of teacher, judge and jury. Decreasing the chances that people would allow themselves to do this questioning. Even so, there are also records of many characters who have made great contributions on this subject over the years. We have an example of this with the philosophical contributions made by Nietzsche.
Philosophical and Religious Aspects
We have already defined some terms that will be very helpful in understanding the different positions that dominate the debate on the existence of God. Even so; there are other relevant aspects that are important to handle and that will allow us to discern in this regard.
What is God?
For many, the answer to this question is clear and unambiguous, while for others it represents the starting point of the debate. For Western culture, the use of the word god alludes to the theistic concept of being omnipresent, all-powerful, and supreme. That entity that is better than any other. The classical position affirms that this all-powerful being is a synonym for perfection, whose characteristics include omniscience (one who knows everything), omnipotence (one who has all power), omnibenevolence (responsible for everything and everyone) and that he is provident with his creation (he is at our disposal to give us his support).
Although this is one of the oldest and most widespread definitions in the population, it does not mean that it is the only one. Depending on the philosophical approach, we can define god as an “unmoved mover”, the “ultimate creator” or an “uncaused cause”. Although many of these definitions have some of the characteristics already mentioned, they do not encompass them in their entirety. Another definition used is one in which God is understood as a superior being from which nothing can be fertilized.
There is a position known as “Pantheism” where God is not believed as a personal being, on the contrary; God’s existence is thought of as a whole that is found in nature, in the universe and in all the things that are within it. On the other hand, many renowned scientists such as Einstein use a definition of god that is based on the philosophical position used by Spinoza and his followers where god is defined as a primary substance or the equivalent of the basic and essential principles of nature. .
A particular and unique way of defining god is found in the branch of Hinduism called “Advaita Vedanta”, where they consider that reality as a whole represents a single divine being, which is indifferent to qualities and change. This deity is known by the name of “Nirguna Brahman” or translated into Spanish: “God without Qualities”. It is considered that this being is beyond the understanding of an ordinary human being, where the world that is perceived is composed of a great variety of objects that are altered by its interaction with us.
Another unique Hindu doctrine is the ‘Adwaita’, which uses the term ‘Saguna Brahman’, which translates to ‘Brahman with qualities’. Here to the deities if special qualities are attributed to him as it happens with the classical gods, having characteristics such as omnipotence, omniscience and omnibenevolence. To finish this point we must talk about polytheistic religions, which have more than one god. Where there are usually marked differences between one with respect to the other in terms of power, ability and divinity. Coming to form hierarchical systems that in some cases can be quite complex, as is the case, for example, with Greco-Roman mythology described by Homer and Virgil. Where we meet gods who have rivalries, arguments, romantic encounters and fights with each other.
How to Prove the Existence of God?
This has been one of the first questions that great thinkers have sought to answer over the years, and the answers they have arrived at can be grouped into the following categories:
Through the Ways of Knowledge of God
It refers to the different ways that the human being has to know God. For the Christian faith, some philosophers and Protestant theologians we can have knowledge of God through two different ways:
- Through postures that are based on the use of reason, also known as ” General Revelation “. Here the data, results and conclusions are based on the observation made of oneself and the world around us.
- All the positions based on the ” Special Revelation ” that consists in the use of faith to give as true the divine revelations that are known from God. For example, believing in the life of Christ, his death and resurrection. The determining aspect in this current is that the totality of the beliefs or doctrines cannot be verified using reason. For example, the incarnation of Christ cannot be verified except by the writings of the apostles in the gospels, but this information is not conclusive using reason.
- We can also find the ” Private Revelations ” that are widely used in the Catholic Church. They consist of the revelations and tests that are presented to particular people being a demonstration for them of the existence of God. But being a singular revelation in a person or a specific group of people. There is no way to prove to others through reason that such a revelation occurred. An example of this are the Marian apparitions, which consist of visions that some people have had over the centuries where they come into contact with saints, angels, with the Virgin Mary, God, etc. Some of the best known cases are that of Joan of Arc or sister Sister Faustina.
In many cases, these revelations that occur in people do not seek to expand or improve their opinion of God, simply to confirm it. Also; It remains for the faithful to decide whether or not to believe in the revelation.
Through General Revelation
For those thinkers and philosophers of the Catholic Church who seek to demonstrate the existence of God through reason, they use Saint Thomas Aquinas as their main argumentative position. This was done after Vatican Council I, where they indicate that Catholic doctrine admits as valid proofs of the existence of God those presented by Aquinas in his five ways: movement, efficiency, contingency, degrees of perfection and purpose.
Through Special Revelation
Those who support this position advocate that they do not require physical evidence or that they follow the line of reason since they assume the existence of God as self-evident. Because despite the methodical or conventional data and tests, these do not arise mainly from a demonstrative process. The reason is due to the relationship between faith and reason, whose interaction does not follow a fixed or particular pattern.
This does not mean that those people who adhere to this position do not carry out studies of the evidence and manifestations that have occurred of the existence of God through the years. Even so, interest in Marian manifestations, the miracles of Alexix Carrel and the statue of Mary in Lourdes, etc. continues to be shown.
The Burden of Proof for Those Who Affirm the Existence of God
In the debate about the existence of God there are two main positions: those who believe in the existence and those who do not believe in the existence of God. The point is that when debating, those who are in favor of the non-existence of God start with one foot forward since they are faced with a logical impossibility, because they cannot prove something that does not exist. This means that the responsibility therefore falls on theists who must prove that God exists. This is known as the burden of proof.
Despite this, the logical impossibility is not 100% fulfilled, since the non-existence of something can be demonstrated if the hypothesis tests are used correctly (scientific method). For example, at a mathematical level it happens very often that a priori postulates, affirmations and theories are refuted. Thanks to the fact that the verification method is numerical and the result is exact, timeless and spaceless.
The drawback with the burden of proof is that people can affirm the existence of god by indicating that it meets the characteristics described in the previous paragraph: that god is divine, all-powerful, timeless, spaceless, omnipotent, etc. But these claims or the evidence that may be presented cannot be tested by numerical or empirical methods. So the only thing that counts as proof is the burden of proof itself.
Still, many theists claim that the burden of proof also falls on the atheist. Since the universe and everything within it has an enormous complexity and magnificence, of which we are unable to measure or understand in its entirety. This implies that those who claim that God does not exist are responsible for answering all the questions and uncertainties that are still inaccessible to human understanding and cannot be explained by chance.
Arguments for the Existence of God
During the passing of the years there have been many Theories About the Existence of God that have been developed. Next, we leave you with some of the most relevant, including Scientific Proofs of the Existence of God :
From the cosmological point of view, it is argued that God must exist since there must be an initial cause or primary source of everything that exists. This source is known as god.
Following the same line of thought, Aristotle develops the “Still First Mover” argument. Where everything that has movement (everything mobile) must have a cause, source, fuel or energy that serves for it to work. Also, when looking at complex systems we realize that some engines work as fuels for other engines and so on. But there must always be an immobile initial motor that starts the entire chain. This first act is attributed to him that God performs it.
Aristotle mentions this theory for the first time in his book “Metaphysics III”, which is then used by other characters in Western philosophy to make a reinterpretation of what is said. Some of the most important figures are Kant, Thomas Aquinas, Hegel, Saint Albert the Great, among others. According to this doctrine, this first mover functions as the last principle of Aristotelian cosmology. Since God is responsible for moving the stars in the universe for the first time and from there; they try to imitate its action by making circular movements.
This is relevant since the circle was a figure that represented perfection within the Greek mentality, since it does not have any starting or closing point, but rather is continuous. Aristotle calls this first engine with the name of “Gnoesis Gnoeseos” which means knowledge of knowledge. It is not clear if this definition of god applies to the Christian religion, but it seems so; or at least that is what Thomas Aquinas says.
There is another aspect of Aristotelian thought where the initial motor is not related to our world as such, but focuses on the activities of thinking and knowing; because we are talking about a being who knows everything and the only thing that remains to be known is his own perfection. This means that humanity and man are not relevant aspects for this first engine, rather consequences of its work carried out in the universe but we are not part of its interest.
What’s more, he may not even be aware of our existence. On the other hand, it is not infinite; This idea is given for two reasons: the first is that the Greeks were against the idea of infinity and also that knowing implies putting limits on reality but knowledge is unlimited. Thus, since it cannot be delimited, it ceases to be knowledge.
This line of thought says that the order of the universe and all its complexity can be effectively explained if a reference is made to a creator god of everything and everyone. Note that this argument is similar to that used by creationism or intelligent design. The opposite position, for being excellent, is Darwin’s evolutionism.
The Five Ways of Thomas Aquinas
Aquinas bases his thoughts on the argumentation given by Aristotle and Plato. Thus he develops the five ways, which consist of a series of statements that confirm the existence of God. These approaches are not exclusive to Aquinas, since many philosophers share some of his ideas, such as: Voltaire. These approaches are as follows:
- Motion – The entire universe is rife with motion, and every object that moves is moved by another entity. In turn, something that moves cannot move another thing nor can it move by itself. At the same time, if something is moved by one thing, that thing must be moved by something else. But this cycle cannot be maintained indefinitely because an initial motor must be reached that is not moved by anyone, but instead has the ability to move and move the other objects. This initial entity is God.
- Efficient Causes : Aquinas mentions that there are efficient causes in the universe, which can be understood as a way of referring to causality, but there is nothing that can be the cause of itself, since in that case it would be prior to it. Which is impossible. As with movement, if we were to trace the causes to their origin, we would have to arrive at an initial cause from which everything starts where the rule of efficient cause is not fulfilled. Therefore neither the ultimate effect nor the intermediate cause is given; this speaks of the existence of a first efficient cause that we call god.
- Contingency : Here we start from the fact that things can exist and not exist, so they can be created and destroyed. In this way, nothing that is created will be able to exist forever since at some point it must be destroyed but in turn, there was a time when it did not exist. If this applies to all things in the universe where there is a state in which things did not exist, there must have been an instant of time in which nothing existed; but if nothing existed it would be impossible for them to come into existence by themselves. This means that there must have been something that started everything else, that is: God.
- Degrees of Perfection : things tend to vary a lot in nature, for example: although we meet someone who is very kind and another who is less kind, there will possibly be someone who is a higher or lower level of this quality. In any case, what is certain is that there must be someone or something that possesses the maximum amount of this quality, thus being the cause of this genre. In this way, fire represents the maximum value of all heats. Following this line of thought, there must be something in all of us as the cause of the maximum existence, that is; god.
- Purpose : In the universe we can find two kinds of things, beings with intelligence and beings without intelligence. Those who do not possess it are governed by the laws of chance or are used or manipulated by those who do possess it, being exemplified as the arrow shot by an archer. This means that there must be someone with intelligence who directs the rest of things: God.
There is a current known as “Aprioristic”, which, unlike the positions mentioned so far, seeks to demonstrate the existence of God without considering any intervening aspect of reality. His thesis revolves around a greater being that cannot be thought. The first people to make such a statement were Saint Anselm and Avicenna.
These authors affirmed that although the existence of God is denied, even so; everyone knows his notion. Since if they did not understand the definition of god they could not affirm that it does not exist. Then they mention that God as the maximum entity of perfection must exist since otherwise anything that exists would become more perfect than him, which would lead us to a contradiction. Therefore, God exists.
This position was accepted by philosophers such as Descartes, Hegel, Gödel, etc. While some of the best known retractors of him were Thomas Aquinas, Kant, Hume, Roger Bancon, among others. Kant would dispute this position by saying that the fact of defining something does not mean that it exists. Later Alvin Plantinga would try to refute Kant’s words without success.
The existence of God according to Saint Augustine is one of the best ontological proofs in favor of the existence of God. He indicates that we all have a conception of god as a perfect entity, but this concept may not be able to arise if we are not able to be perfect in reality, in this way. God exists.
Those framed in the body vs. mind dilemma indicate that it is much easier to understand the relationship between consciousness and matter if the existence of God is considered to be real. On the other hand, those who argue that all physical qualities that we can appreciate in the universe are of vital importance and not simple epiphenomena (love, beauty, justice, values, etc.) are faithful followers of theism and not of materialism.
Many affirm that logic, ethics, science among other things would not have the same impact without the existence of God, for this reason; atheistic arguments must self-refute if coherence is used.
Everything done, no matter how basic (including our experience), can be better explained if there is a god.
The objectivity of morality depends on the existence of God.
This argument was developed by Blaise Pascal when he had a discussion on the subject, he affirms that the existence of God is related to chance, since there is no sure way to determine his existence, so rationally the safe thing would be to believe or bet that it does exist.
The Will-to-Believe Argument
It was created by the pragmatic philosopher William James, who made an attempt to prove the existence of God using as a hypothesis the idea that “the existence of God works for the life of a believer”. The only drawback is that this argument rests almost entirely on his pragmatic theory of truth. Where it says that beliefs are validated according to how they affect people’s lives after having been adopted by them and not by tests that are located in moments prior to conversion. In this theory it is a fairly close variant of the hypothetical-deductive method.
Although there are different cultures, traditions and beliefs; existence in god has been a common point of convergence in all populations since ancient times (it can be recorded since the paleolithic). Although the representation of God may vary from one culture to another, the vast majority retain the basic characteristics: omnipotent, omnipresence, omnibenevolence, etc.
Doing Science Doesn’t Mean God Doesn’t Exist
Although it may not be considered as a weighty argument, it is relevant to mention that since the industrial revolution many renowned scientists like Einstein have emerged who have been eminences in their respective scientific fields, but who have still openly declared that they believe in the existence of of God. Even today we can find many professionals from different branches of science who hold this opinion.
For example, the professor at the University of Oxford, Richard Swinburne, who conducts studies on the origins of the universe, mentions that life required really particular conditions for it to be able to gestate. To which he goes on to say that god must have had a good reason for creating life.
The journalist Julia Hinde, who is in charge of directing an important popular science magazine, affirms that our cognitive capacities are far superior to the demands and obstacles that we have had to face due to evolution. Managing to increase our abilities to perceive the different phenomena of the universe. This peculiarity can only be explained by the existence of god.
Arguments Against the Existence of God
During history there have been many people who developed arguments to prove the existence of God, but at the same time; We find many arguments that seek to prove that God does not exist. In fact, this debate for and against has been so fed back over time, that every time an argument is made in favor of a position, a counter-argument is immediately made against it. In any case, the arguments against the existence of god that we will mention below are intended to show that the characteristics that define the gods are not possible to adjust to reality, as they do not make logical sense, are contradictory or do not correspond to reality. scientific and historical facts.
In some cases, the arguments that we will mention focus on certain aspects of the definition of god or on specific definitions of it. Since not all cultures and religions have a unitary and universal definition of God.
This position bases its arguments on the lack of factual evidence, that is; in the impossibility of obtaining proofs of hypotheses that allow to give veracity of the existence of god. Among the different empirical arguments that we can find, these are the most important to date:
Inconsistent Disclosures Argument
According to this position, the version of god represented in sacred texts such as the bible, the tanaj or the koran present inconsistencies when describing god between the different passages of each book in which they refer to him; or inconsistencies between the written passages and the known facts.
This argument makes use of “Biblical Inerrancy” or as it is also known “Infallibility”. Which consists of a criticism of theists for using the Bible as reliable proof of the existence of God. But this brings a practical problem, since we would fall into a circular argument where God exists because the Bible says so, but although man wrote the Bible, he did so under the revelation of God». So we return to the beginning of the argument.
Of these sacred texts, the Koran varies a little the speech, since for them this book is an empirical proof of the existence of God due to its beauty (and not so much because the book was written by God). In fact, Mohammed makes it very clear, whenever he is asked about a miracle that has happened to him, he always said that the only miracle was the Koran.
Many affirm that God cannot be able to exist since, being omnipotent and omnibenevolent, he should not allow evil to exist in the world in its different variants. On the other hand, if God is almighty and knows no limits, how come there are still human beings who do not believe in his existence? That this occurs is proof of God’s inability to do so, or at least to refute his omnipotence.
This argument is based on the evolutionary theories of Darwin, stating that if God does not exist, it should not be possible to find life forms that have a bad design. In turn, it uses as argumentative evidence the multiple consequences of natural selection and how it contradicts creationism, which is based on intelligent design (someone all-powerful who creates us according to his convenience and pleasure).
It uses the logic of “Occam’s Razor”: as the theories developed by science are capable of explaining natural phenomena as well as the development of religion and belief in god without making use of supernatural arguments, then it is not God may exist because his explanations become superfluous and can be omitted. At least, until the theological currents are capable of giving convincing explanations of the religious phenomenon.
The Lack of Divine Appearances
Although many religions use divine appearances as proof of the existence of God, the reality is that there are very few cases throughout history where this occurs. Also; on those occasions there have always been few witnesses to validate the apparition. It is also convenient that these apparitions lack real evidence except for the word of the person who witnesses them. People who affirm their existence through words only provide subjective evidence that lacks scientific validity.
On the other hand, the logic of science has a saying that “all ravens are black until we meet a white one.” Taking this example to the existence of god, we can say that god does not exist until conclusive evidence of his existence is given. The same goes for claims that the devil or a demon inhabits someone’s body. There is no real empirical evidence to conclude the validity of such a statement. Richard Dawkins comments on this through his book “The God Delusion”, where he says that if a person observes an apparition he is branded as crazy, but when many do, it is considered religion.
The same author Richard Dawkins in his book “The God Delusion”, comments that the universe and the things that are within it have an incalculable complexity, so that if there is a creator god of all things, this must be equally complicated and complex on a par with the very universe he has created. This implies that god must also have a designer and this designer another, becoming an “Ad Infinitum” (an infinite loop). In this way it is verified that we are facing a logical fallacy where God is not the origin of complexity, since it has always existed. In turn, the design does not finish explaining the complexity, something that natural selection is capable of doing.
Another deductive argument is found when analyzing how it is possible that by acts committed in a finite life, which becomes spurious compared to eternity. May they determine our permanence in hell for the rest of time. Thus contradicting the characteristics of the omnibenevolence and omnipresence of God.
The Paradox of Omnipotence
That god is all powerful and omnipotent is logically contradictory. Since if he can do everything, it means that he could create for example: a rock so big that no one is able to lift it, but him; being all powerful he should be able to do it. The problem is that if he does, he contradicts his omnipotent ability, because he is no longer capable of creating everything. The same happens if he is not able to lift the stone, because he makes it clear that he is not all powerful. A similar case occurs with the question of is he capable of creating a being more powerful than him?
Another variant of this argument describes that if God knows everything, he must be able to know the position of all atoms in the universe, including where they have been over the years and where they will be in the near future. But this implies having a memory much larger than the infinite set of possible states in the universe.
Why God being omnipresent, omnipotent and perfect in every way (including morally) would create morally imperfect human beings instead of making them morally perfect just like him.
Free Will Argument
It is also known as the “Free Will Paradox or Theological Fatalism”. This position opposes the existence of an omniscient god who has free will since these properties are contradictory to each other.
Being an omniscient god, he is able to know everything that is going to happen, turning our ability to act under free will into a fallacy since we will be destined to corroborate that omniscient knowledge of god. On the other hand, if we actually act under free will and change events that were meant to happen, we disprove God’s ability to be omniscient. On the other hand, if God is omniscient, his capacity for free will is unnecessary since he knows in advance how he should act.
Counter Cosmological Argument
If all things have a prior and superior cause, it means that everything that has been created must have a creator. This implies that the same god must have a creator, and this creator another, and so on, falling in an infinite cycle of creators. This contradicts the premise that the universe is the second cause and God is the first.
Finally, we find the deductive arguments of «theological non-cognitivism» that seek to refute the concept of God that appears in the sacred texts through demonstration. Testing hypotheses and using the scientific method.
As the name indicates, all the arguments that are enunciated in this category make use of the inductive method to ensure that God does not exist.
Argumentation of the Absence of Reason
If God is omnipotent and omniscient, it means that they do not have a real reason to create the universe, since they do not have weaknesses, needs, desires or desires. Characteristic subjective concepts of human beings that do not meet these qualities. This leads us to a logical contradiction, since the existence of the universe should not have an omnipotent god.
This argument appears from the hand of Scott Adams in his book «God’s Debris». Where he describes a kind of pandeism as a fundamental theological model. Other authors such as Ludwin Von Mises mention something similar, stating that an all-powerful and perfect god must have all his needs and desires met. So when starting “a project” as a universe, it exposes its imperfection.
The authors who support this argument indicate that at a historical level we have witnessed the emergence, development and extinction of many religions, as is the case of the religion of ancient Egypt or Greek mythology. So these gods that their time was considered true and that their existence was real; over time they were considered false and absurd. Which is why, if this happened to those religions, the same should happen to contemporary religions. Therefore and following inductive reasoning, God does not exist.
Something particular happens with Hindu atheism, since there are two separate aspects of Hindu theism. One where there is no god since this is impersonal (abstract) and another promoted by Krishna where it is indicated that there is a personal god. Example: Buddhism. Despite this, Hindu atheists reject the possibility of a creator god using as an argument, mainly these two positions:
Sankhia Atheist Doctrine
This position arises from the texts of the «Samkhia-Sutra» and affirms that there is no philosophical notion for a creator god. Furthermore, since the existence of Ishwara (god) cannot be proved, it cannot be admitted either. The arguments he uses are mainly metaphysical, for example: it is unlikely that an immutable god who never changes could be the source of such a changing universe. On the other hand, this text seeks to demonstrate that the notion of god is contradictory and inconceivable.
A perfect god has no need to create this world. In any case, if you decide to create it, what is the reason for making humanity so imperfect and full of suffering. The latter also contradicts the idea that God is love and full of goodness. Because if God is omnibenevolent, he should have created only living beings that live happily and do not have to suffer any suffering.
Mimamsa Atheist Doctrine
For those defenders of this position that originated from some rituals and in “Orthopraxis”, they indicate that there is no evidence that is really proving the existence of God. They also add that we do not need to generate a deity that is the one that has created the world, nor that allows the validation of rituals. In the mimamsa, all the gods described in the Vedas have no real existence apart from the mantras that repeat their names. For this reason, what is truly divine are the mantras, not the idea of god.
The Religiousness of the Human Being
Up to this point we have briefly and unbiasedly described the arduous and ongoing debate between those who claim that God exists versus what they believe does not exist. Debate that is as old as the very emergence of religion and the notion of God. Now, although we cannot tip the balance towards one of these two positions, it is clear that humans are religious beings. To the point of becoming one of our basic characteristics that distinguish us from the rest of the animals.
Through religion people seek to purify their bodies, minds and souls. Allowing to clean the mistakes and sins committed. It helps reduce fear and ignorance in the face of the unknown and allows us to face the problems and obstacles that arise in the present and will arise in the future. It is true that the idea of a god is not universal, since polytheistic religions existed and exist, but the tendency over time has been to justify the mysteries of the world through a single god.
Humanity has sought to provide answers through reflection on God to the central issues of human existence: life and death, good and evil, why we came into the world, what is the meaning of things, etc. This implies that religion and the notion of god are not only characteristics of each human being, but also of cultures and of humanity in general. This is why many atheists and non-god advocates have ended up asking for his help in their time of need. They have nothing to do with hypocrisy, rather; with a universal truth of all human beings: «We are religious beings».
Once this point of vital importance has been established, we are left to accept further; that we have religious freedom. Everyone decides who to believe in and where to project their faith, despite the fact that other people, peoples or society in general exert pressure for you to follow a specific path.
Causes of Atheism
An important aspect of all those who argue for the existence of God is that the fact that they seek to prove that he is real does not imply that their faith is reasonable. The reason for this can be different reasons:
- Determining that god exists allows man to recognize that we share some satisfying characteristics in common such as: kindness, love, intelligence, etc.
- Faith is man’s free response to a revealed god and not a mere philosophical deduction.
- God himself is the source of faith that touches the hearts of men and allows them to adhere to him.
- Darkness and sin destroy man’s reason and prevent him from being able to see the existence of God, as well as having faith in his teachings. This being the main reason from the faith (especially from the Christian faith) of the atheism of many people.
Atheism is structured with two components, one theoretical and the other practical. The theoretician makes use of reason to try to deny the existence of God while the practical one implies demonstrating that God does not exist through behavior; in other words, live pretending that he does not exist.
On the other hand, there is the misconception that if God exists, then the condition of man is bound to be punished. He may already be free, nor will he have free will while he is alive. This approach ignores the attribute given to human beings by God of freedom and autonomy, being a position contrary to what he really is. The history of Christianity makes it very clear through the teachings learned over the years due to the hardships that the peoples have had to face.
Many of the people who deny the existence of God do so, mainly in Christianity because they consider that this is an obstacle to the growth of humanity and human progress since they assume that Christian beliefs come from ignorance and superstition. Many Christians respond to this argument by pointing to the positive effect that Christian revelation has had on the anthropology of man and his rights. , even; about its impact on the growth of science.
The main reason for practical atheism lies in the bad example that believers give, either because they do not follow the path of good or because they learn the path of God in a superficial or incomplete way. Causing that it is impossible to realize when a mistake is being made. The latter may be the product of a bad religious education.
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