God? The absence of evidence is the evidence of absence…


g

From God Is A Myth

Why agnosticism is irrational…

agnostic (n.) Look up agnostic at Dictionary.com 1870, “one who professes that the existence of a First Cause and the essential nature of things are not and cannot be known” [Klein]; coined by T.H. Huxley (1825-1895), supposedly in September 1869, from Greek agnostos “unknown, unknowable,” from a- “not” + gnostos “(to be) known” (see gnostic).

atheist (n.) Look up atheist at Dictionary.com1570s, from French athéiste (16c.), from Greek atheos “without god, denying the gods; abandoned of the gods; godless, ungodly,” from a- “without” + theos “a god”.

I’ve come across many blogs and sites that contend that atheism is an irrational position because we can’t know for sure that gods or a God does not exist. For the purpose of this article I would like to inform the reader that when I use the term God with a capital G I am specifically referring to the Judaeo Christian deity and when I don’t capitalize I am referring to gods in general.

From the outset I would like to inform the reader that I am an atheist who affirms that gods and God specifically do not exist. I am a firm believer that in this case at least absence of evidence is evidence of absence. It is my opinion that there are certain issues that can be answered definitively without the necessity for holding back judgement based on the origins for instance of a religious tradition or belief.

Let’s elaborate first what it means to be an agnostic. As in atheism the “a” has a negative connotation and can be interpreted to mean without or as is pointed out in the definition for agnosticism not. Basically what the agnostic claims is that the existence of God or gods cannot be known because of insufficient knowledge or evidence to make a positive claim for or against the claim of the existence of gods. To an extent I agree with this definition. For instance I am of the opinion that no one can definitively prove or disprove the existence of God. This is definitely an agnostic position but I take my view a step further.

Since this blog is mostly about the Christian deity I will focus on him for the most part, but this same argument applies to all gods. Due to years of research and my own personal studies of comparative  religions and religious origins and beliefs, I have come to the definite conclusion that God does not exist. There are several reasons which I will seek to outline in this post.

The first and most telling reason to me is that conveniently God if he exists does so outside of space and time and beyond the reach of scientific scrutiny and inquiry. We can’t put God in a test tube and if we were to take the Bible as a revelation from this deity to man he is elusive on purpose. In the scriptures where most Jews, Christians, and Muslims get their concept of this God you read incredible tales about the exploits of this deity and his interaction specifically with the ancient Hebrew/Jews. We read of the parting of the Red sea or the sea of Reeds. The global flood, creation, the origins of languages, all narrated in fictional tales which are quite frankly the way myths and traditions are made.

Yes, there is some actual history intertwined in some of these narratives but that does not validate the extraordinary claims of a deity’s intervention in human affairs. The ancient Hebrews claimed in these tales that God spoke from a mountain with a thunderous voice, he accompanied them in the desert as a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night! He struck people dead on the spot for disobeying him, he caused natural disasters like the nine plagues he supposedly inflicted on Egypt.

These tales are fantastical because they are the creations of man and obviously reflect within them the most common beliefs and superstitions of the day. The authors of the Bible claim that they obtained their knowledge of this God by inspiration or some kind of divine revelation. But if we are to take revelation as a valid means of obtaining knowledge then we run into a huge problem. What of all the other so called sacred texts from around the world whose authors claim to have been divinely revealed by the god or gods of their choice? If we accept that the Bible was revealed to man by God then we must extend that same benefit to all the other religions claiming revelation. The next problem is that all these revelations from all these deities are vastly different from one another. So which one is correct? Some like the biblical deity threaten eternal damnation for those who refuse to worship and believe in them.

The world is also chock full of creation myths that span every culture and society one could imagine. It is my belief that religions are rooted in ancient superstitions and myths and have nothing to do with any real deities or gods. There is no proof of God because he only exists in the hearts and minds of those that choose to believe in him. This is obviously why you can’t prove what only exist in the mind. Man can imagine many things but just because he imagines them does not make them real. I can imagine a goddess with voluptuous breasts and the sexiest body I can think of. I can dress her in my favorite clothes or better yet naked. I can love her or fear her and create her story to intertwine with actual events in our time. This does not make her real in any sense. This is the stuff of fiction; how books are written and movies scripts are made.

God and gods in general being the creations of men and whatever a fearful and ignorant mind can imagine does not make those imaginings true. In fact, they don’t even seem probable. Why doesn’t God make any appearances today? Not to individuals but to whole nations all at once. The fact that I don’t know or even may never know how life evolved from nonliving matter or how the universe came to be does not lead me to delve into myths to explain what at this time is not yet known.

Here is a question for my readers and those that may oppose my views on this matter. Do you believe that leprechauns exist? If not, then why? We don’t have evidence that they exist but they have existed in Irish lore for quite some time. We have heard many conflicting tales about them. In some tales they are harmless and benevolent and in others they can be quite dangerous and mean. To my knowledge not too many people have a problem with dismissing these creatures outright. Why? Because although there is no evidence of their existence we are sure that they are derived from traditional lore and have been invented by men. Why should gods or even the biblical God be any different? Remember that yesterdays gods, beliefs, and traditions, have for the most part become today’s myths. The Bible and the Torah need to take their place in the category of myths along with all the others where they belong.

In the case of agnosticism is it reasonable to hold off judgement regarding the existence of leprechauns? Is absence of evidence not evidence of absence in this case? If your answer is no then you are being hypocritical. Because if you were true to your agnostic position you would also acknowledge that leprechauns, fairies, sprites, angels, demons, gods, big foot, ufo’s, the Kraken, all the gods and goddesses of Greek and Roman mythology, the boogie man, the mothman, the tooth fairy, Santa, etc. must all probably exist since we don’t have enough knowledge to make a decision to the contrary.

In conclusion, the evidence we do have points to the nonexistence of God. When you realize that God is a myth based on a rational review of the traditions surrounding beliefs about God and the origins of myths themselves. I’m not a big fan of probability theory because based on it anything no matter how ridiculous can be given serious consideration as probably being true.

Note: All word definitions are taken from the Online Etymology Dictionary.~~

3 Comments

“Due to years of research and my own personal studies of comparative religions and religious origins and beliefs, I have come to the definite conclusion that God does not exist.” Why is he bothering to waste all that time, unless he is worried he may be wrong?

    Don: Like me, he was raised in it… and then for years he preached it. And then, like me, he realized he’d been had, and now he’s pissed. All those years of boring, boring nonsense and fear. So, he’s hoping to help others who may be questioning also. Hurrah for him!

I understand. I shucked it all when I was maybe 8 years old. Later, I married a woman who subsequently was born again — and for the life of me I couldn’t convince her it was nonsense. It was my experience with her and others of her kind that no amount of logic will dent their resolve, but will only make them hang on firmer. In fact, psychologists have documented that argument against a person’s beliefs, whatever they may be, will only strengthen them. In the case of Christianity, fear of life and death often drives that clinging. I agree it’s good that when someone realizes what is going on, a life raft thrown to them is worthwhile. However, the opposition between any sort of dogmatic theism and total atheism simply leaves out immense volumes of human experiences that lie somewhere in between. There are more substantial existential life rafts in which dogma in either direction or in any other way plays no role. It is an immensely complex, ever changing, and mysterious world, both inside and out. Yet, marvelous inspirations appear and give indications that we are so much more than we have been taught, like unto gods some say, which we each may realize by practice — not belief. There are many versions of such practices, but all revolve around love, no authorities or scriptures necessary.

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