When I was younger it seemed that religion was the default setting that we were programmed with; this is a view I no longer have. As soon as someone told me that God ruled everything, I asked ‘who made God?’
I have never been given a suitable answer to this question. In fact, I have only ever been given two answers; the first is: ‘He has always been there’. The second, ‘we cannot know’.
The first of these answers is insane, and I am not sure how absent-minded you have to be to swallow that without hesitation. The second is more compelling, although it is more dangerous.
The reason I say it is more dangerous is that there are people who claim to know about God, and these people have real power over you in the only Universe we can be sure exists. They say they know what ‘God’ wants and command us to do what ‘God’ says, whether it is to mutilate our children’s genitals or my personal favourite commandment, the tenth. Not only is keeping up with the Jones’ a sure fire way to remain in debt to the man, but it is also a sin. It would seem marketing is even eviler than I thought.
‘You must not be envious of your neighbour’s goods. You shall not be envious of his house nor his wife, nor anything that belongs to your neighbour.’
Shortly after this, I heard about the ‘Big Bang’. My question was almost precisely the same ‘what was there before the Big Bang?’ The only answer I have been given to this is ‘ We cannot know’. The difference is, with the Big Bang, the numbers add up, and those numbers tell us that the universe is roughly 14 billion years ago.
When I was a teenager, I started to ask my peers if they believed in a God. Most of them did not. In my family it is only my grandmother that believes in any form of spirituality; I don’t know precisely what her beliefs are, but she does believe in heaven. I was lucky not to have anyone’s beliefs thrust upon me: I was allowed to think for myself.
Since I have learned that there are people that do believe there is some supernatural being or an entire supervisory Justice-Leagueesque team of supervisors, I have been interested in why people believe this answer.
I have never heard an argument for the existence of anything supernatural where you do not have to make big leaps in imagination and except things because someone else says so. It is not often in my discipline that I come across anyone willing to believe; whenever I do come across them, they are never above average regarding their ability to use their initiative.
If you’re willing to believe a negative, because you cannot disprove a negative then you must surely think the following. There is a tiny invisible, undetectable penguin that accompanies each of us around. If you cannot prove me wrong, it must be true.
I will write about life after death in my next post, but before we depart ways, I will leave you with one final thought.
There are estimated to be 4200 different religions I believe in zero, and therefore I believe in zero percent. If you do believe in one, you believe in 0.0002% of religions. Of all the different God’s that have been dreamed up by humans which is well more than 100,000, what are the chances the one you believe in is correct?
P.S – The term atheist… Do you think it is stupid as I do? After all, why do you need a word to say you do not believe in something? I don’t have a word for my non-belief in the penguin I previously mentioned, should I have?