If God created us...

  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » Christianity
  3. » If God created us...

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

Reply Wed 4 Nov, 2009 09:55 pm
Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching? Why would he infect humans with the anti-religious idea of free will? Why would god give humans the ability to disagree with his religion? Why would god create humans so that they may create conflicting or different religious beliefs other than Christianity? Why would god ever want to condemn his own children or to add, give us the ability to do such that he would condemn us for? Why would god create humans with the reason to prove religion irrational in many areas? Why would go ever make humans susceptible to the dangers of having a train of thought other than a strictly religious one?

Those who are believers... answers please.
 
prothero
 
Reply Wed 4 Nov, 2009 10:20 pm
@Yogi DMT,
There is no true creativity without risk.
In a meaningful world, a world in which true novelty and creativity are possible, risk is real.
The notion of God as a divine tyrant is not worthy of worship.
I might point out that mechanistic determinism as a worldview deprives man of his freedom and the world of true meaning every bit as much as the notion of divine predestination does.
 
Persona phil
 
Reply Thu 5 Nov, 2009 09:52 am
@prothero,
prothero;101942 wrote:
I might point out that mechanistic determinism as a worldview deprives man of his freedom and the world of true meaning every bit as much as the notion of divine predestination does.

Sounds like something you're suggesting, rather than something you're pointing out.
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Thu 5 Nov, 2009 04:08 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:


Those who are believers... answers please.


You need to get the "Teacher's Edition" of the book. The answers are in the back.

Silly monkey . . . . . .
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Fri 6 Nov, 2009 04:50 pm
@TickTockMan,
Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching?


Because if he did not, we would not be human. There is no one right religion. Every faith tradition I've looked at has wisdom, offers a path to God, even if they use some other name.

It's something like this: we all dance, but some dance to jazz, some to country, some to rock'n'roll. Dancing is God, the genre is the religion. Make any sense?

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would he infect humans with the anti-religious idea of free will?


I don't see free will as an anti-religious idea.

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would god give humans the ability to disagree with his religion?


God doesn't have religion, man has religion.

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would god create humans so that they may create conflicting or different religious beliefs other than Christianity?


Religious beliefs only conflict when people have misunderstood the teachings. And this is true even when one religion says X and another says not-X.

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would god ever want to condemn his own children or to add, give us the ability to do such that he would condemn us for?


He doesn't want to condemn us. When you stop and consider that He has given us a chance at human life, here on Earth, with every opportunity for enlightenment, I think He's given us quite a gift.

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would god create humans with the reason to prove religion irrational in many areas?


Let's be careful. Religion is diverse. Some religion has been shown to be absurd and silly.

Man needs reason so that he can make his way in this world. Again, man has religion, not God. Religion is our invention. Reason allows us the ability to make religion, and improve religion, and alter religion as needed.

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would go ever make humans susceptible to the dangers of having a train of thought other than a strictly religious one?


Because it takes a lot of practice before hunting for food is a strictly religious train of thought. It takes a lot of practice to function effectively in the world with purely religious thoughts. And practice takes time.
 
prothero
 
Reply Sat 7 Nov, 2009 12:41 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching? Why would he infect humans with the anti-religious idea of free will? Why would god give humans the ability to disagree with his religion? Why would god create humans so that they may create conflicting or different religious beliefs other than Christianity? Why would god ever want to condemn his own children or to add, give us the ability to do such that he would condemn us for? Why would god create humans with the reason to prove religion irrational in many areas? Why would go ever make humans susceptible to the dangers of having a train of thought other than a strictly religious one?

Those who are believers... answers please.

I am a theist. More particularly I am a panentheistic sort of Chrisitan but I do not believe in the God you describe. I would say your conception of the divine and of how the divine acts is fundamentally flawed (pun intended). You may think you describe the God that all theists believe in; but in reality only a small minority would see God the way you describe and then not the most thoughtful or informed.
You are jousting at windmills, setting fire to strawmen, trying to destroy a concept of the divine that not only is already dead but never lived.
 
xris
 
Reply Sat 7 Nov, 2009 01:05 pm
@prothero,
prothero;102351 wrote:
I am a theist. More particularly I am a panentheistic sort of Chrisitan but I do not believe in the God you describe. I would say your conception of the divine and of how the divine acts is fundamentally flawed (pun intended). You may think you describe the God that all theists believe in; but in reality only a small minority would see God the way you describe and then not the most thoughtful or informed.
You are jousting at windmills, setting fire to strawmen, trying to destroy a concept of the divine that not only is already dead but never lived.
Most avoid describing their god in to much detail because the answers in the detail. His not destroying any concept, his asking for confirmation or denial.
 
prothero
 
Reply Sat 7 Nov, 2009 04:29 pm
@xris,
xris;102355 wrote:
Most avoid describing their god in to much detail because the answers in the detail. His not destroying any concept, his asking for confirmation or denial.

Some would say "the devil is in the details". The questions imply a particular concept of the divine to which the response is
"Why would"? guestions Neti, Neti "not this, not that". answers

For my personal conception of the divine; basically my conception is that of the god of "process theology" or the conception of the divine of A.N. Whitehead and Charles Hartshorne. A forum is not the place for long detailed presentations of complex notions of divine reality and divine action.
Fundamentally in process the divine works through nature and natural process not through supernatural intervention. Fundamental reality consists of process of events, moments of experience "becoming" not being.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Sat 7 Nov, 2009 07:16 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching?
Your premise is not that God created religion -- only that he created us. If God created humans to be imperfect and have finite knowledge, then it stands to reason that religions (which are human social constructs) would be imperfect and open to rejection,
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 08:24 am
@prothero,
prothero;102376 wrote:
Some would say "the devil is in the details". The questions imply a particular concept of the divine to which the response is
"Why would"? guestions Neti, Neti "not this, not that". answers

For my personal conception of the divine; basically my conception is that of the god of "process theology" or the conception of the divine of A.N. Whitehead and Charles Hartshorne. A forum is not the place for long detailed presentations of complex notions of divine reality and divine action.
Fundamentally in process the divine works through nature and natural process not through supernatural intervention. Fundamental reality consists of process of events, moments of experience "becoming" not being.
You either dont know or not prepared to explain. Just tell me if he is consciously aware of his creation?
 
Cathain phil
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 08:55 am
@Yogi DMT,
I'll give my personal opinon:

Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching?

I assume that God gave us intellect so that we may come to know him of our own Free Will.

Quote:
Why would he infect humans with the anti-religious idea of free will?
What do you find "Anti-Religious" abut the concept of Free Will.
It is very much a part of my religion.

Quote:
Why would god give humans the ability to disagree with his religion? Why would god create humans so that they may create conflicting or different religious beliefs other than Christianity?
The ability to disagree with God, (if we assume God to be the truth, this means disagreeing = being in error) is a side-effect of having Free Will.
If you have the ability to freely choose what is true or what is right, you must by necessity have the ability to choose what is false or wrong.

Having the ability to do something and God desiring us to do something, are two different things. Rather, by giving us Free Will he desires that we choose to do what is right. But by the very fact that we are able to choose to do good, we must logically also have the correspondingly opposite choice - to do what is wrong.

Quote:
Why would god ever want to condemn his own children or to add, give us the ability to do such that he would condemn us for?
Why assume that God wants you to do something which he will condemn you for? He has given you a tool (Free Will) that he wants you to use to an end (to do what is right). In the same way I may give you a hammer (a tool) and and tell you to hammer a nail in the wall for me to hang a picture up on (a desired end). You could however use the tool for something I didn't intent for you to do. You could use it to bash your broters head in with. Yes, I gave you the tool with whch to do it. But that is not what I wanted you to use it for.

The ability to choose evil is a necessary side-effect of having the ability to choose what is good.

You have asked another question here as well, however.
I have stated why I believe we have the ability to choose to do wrong (a side-effect of being able to choose to do right), but you also mentioned God condemning us. Well, if he is a good God then he must also be a just God, for who would seriously consider justice to be an evil quality?
Surely every sane person consider justice to be a quality belonging to goodness? Thus a good God is also a just God, and it is just to condemn what is wrong.

Quote:
Why would god create humans with the reason to prove religion irrational in many areas?
Such as?

Quote:
Why would go ever make humans susceptible to the dangers of having a train of thought other than a strictly religious one?

I think what you are asking here is why God gave us Free Will anyway?
I believe that the reason is because he wanted his creation to freely choose to do right. I suppose he could have made us without the ability to make our own decisions. In that case, he would have made robots. We would be mindless automatons. If we do good because we have no choice in the matter, what credit would that be to us?

If I tell you my child that it is good to share his toys with his friends and this is what I want him to do, whch will please me more? Which will give more credit, more kudos? If he does so whilst I give him the free choice to do so or not? Or if I force him to do so? It would obviously be the latter, would it not? Similarly, if you donate to charity through your own choice, then it does you credit, yes? But if I order you to give your money at gunpoint then you haven't really done a good deed, have you? You simply had no other real option.

So goodness, which God desires, is a result of the right choice + freely doing so. If you remove the choice, then it is not good but merely an act of necessity. Since I assume God desires goodness, then Free Will is needed.

To do the right things with no choice in the matter is not a good act on your part, merely a neccesary act.

Also, to have the choice but choose to do wrong is an act of evil.
We are using our ability for an end it was not intended for. This is the very definition of the word "perversion". To use something for a wrong/unintentional end. Thus a perverse act is an evil act.
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 08:58 am
@Cathain phil,
Cathain;102449 wrote:
I'll give my personal opinon:


I assume that God gave us intellect so that we may come to know him of our own Free Will.

What do you find "Anti-Religious" abut the concept of Free Will.
It is very much a part of my religion.

The ability to disagree with God, (if we assume God to be the truth, this means disagreeing = being in error) is a side-effect of having Free Will.
If you have the ability to freely choose what is true or what is right, you must by necessity have the ability to choose what is false or wrong.

Having the ability to do something and God desiring us to do something, are two different things. Rather, by giving us Free Will he desires that we choose to do what is right. But by the very fact that we are able to choose to do good, we must logically also have the correspondingly opposite choice - to do what is wrong.

Why assume that God wants you to do something which he will condemn you for? He has given you a tool (Free Will) that he wants you to use to an end (to do what is right). In the same way I may give you a hammer (a tool) and and tell you to hammer a nail in the wall for me to hang a picture up on (a desired end). You could however use the tool for something I didn't intent for you to do. You could use it to bash your broters head in with. Yes, I gave you the tool with whch to do it. But that is not what I wanted you to use it for.

The ability to choose evil is a necessary side-effect of having the ability to choose what is good.

Such as?

I think what you are asking here is why God gave us Free Will anyway?
I believe that the reason is because he wanted his creation to freely choose to do right. I suppose he could have made us without the ability to make our own decisions. In that case, he would have made robots. We would be mindless automatons. If we do good because we have no choice in the matter, what credit would that be to us?

If I tell you my child that it is good to share his toys with his friends and this is what I want him to do, whch will please me more? Which will give more credit, more kudos? If he does so whilst I give him the free choice to do so or not? Or if I force him to do so? It would obviously be the latter, would it not? Similarly, if you donate to charity through your own choice, then it does you credit, yes? But if I order you to give your money at gunpoint then you haven't really done a good deed, have you? You simply had no other real option.

So goodness, which God desires, is a result of the right choice + freely doing so. If you remove the choice, then it is not good but merely an act of necessity. Since I assume God desires goodness, then Free Will is needed.

To do the right things with no choice in the matter is not a good act on your part, merely a neccesary act.

Also, to have the choice but choose to do wrong is an act of evil.
We are using our ability for an end it was not intended for. This is the very definition of the word "perversion". To use something for a wrong/unintentional end. Thus a perverse act is an evil act.
A simple question ,why did god make us imperfect and then expect perfection?
 
Cathain phil
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 09:04 am
@xris,
xris;102451 wrote:
A simple question ,why did god make us imperfect and then expect perfection?


First, you have to explain what you mean by perfect?
God is perfect, anything less than God must therefore fall short of perfection.
To ask why we were made imperfect is to ask why God did not create God.

The second part of the question is "why did God expect perfection from us?"
Why do you think he does? I do not believe God expects us to be perfect, for this would be to expect us to be God. What God desires (expect is wrong because he clearly understands our limitations) is that we choose to do what is right and so come to the fulfilment of our purpose.
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 09:41 am
@Cathain phil,
Cathain;102452 wrote:
First, you have to explain what you mean by perfect?
God is perfect, anything less than God must therefore fall short of perfection.
To ask why we were made imperfect is to ask why God did not create God.

The second part of the question is "why did God expect perfection from us?"
Why do you think he does? I do not believe God expects us to be perfect, for this would be to expect us to be God. What God desires (expect is wrong because he clearly understands our limitations) is that we choose to do what is right and so come to the fulfilment of our purpose.
So we are not perfect, is there a reason why god cant make us perfect, is he incapable? So you agree we are not perfect, how imperfect are we? are we all equally imperfect? or is there subtle differences? I think he does require a certain perfection otherwise what is the purpose of our testing? What is the purpose of our imperfection? to test how imperfect we actually are, are we a type of prototype?
 
Cathain phil
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 10:21 am
@xris,
xris;102457 wrote:
So we are not perfect, is there a reason why god cant make us perfect, is he incapable?


That's a very good question.
For starters, I don't think he wanted to make us perfect because as I said, perfection would be God. I don't think he wanted to create a clone of himself. What would be the point?

But the really juicy one here is asking whether God would be capable of it?
God is eternal, he always has been. He is the Uncaused Cause. He didn't even cause himself. It is a nonsensical notion anyway, as cause suggests something preceeding the act, and as God is eternal then nothing preceeded him, therefore he can't have a cause.
But could he cause another one of himself? I'm tempted to say no, but then this would immediately have implications on his omnipotence. For if something is beyond God's ability, then he cannot be omnipotent.

Perhaps this is just something beyond our ability to grasp?
I'm reluctant to say that because it sounds like a cop-out, but it is actually a perfectly valid statement. There is no reason to suppose that finite creatues are able to comprehend the entirety of the infinite.


Quote:
So you agree we are not perfect,
Absolutely.

Quote:
how imperfect are we?
How do you quantify perfection/inperfection in this case?

Quote:
are we all equally imperfect? or is there subtle differences?
Again, this depends on what you mean.
There is a Papal Enyclical which discusses the modern notion of the "Equality of Man". The problem, it says, with the modern notion of equality between people is that it confuses "equality" with being "identical".

I think I am the equal of my next door neighbour.
He is not equally as knowledgable as me about history or philosophy.
Neither am I as good as him at fixing cars.
We are certainly not identical, and we are not all as equally capable of doing the same things. This is why modern notions of equality fail, they are not rooted in reality.
However, I do believe we are still equal as human beings. By that I mean, we are all born with an immortal soul, and we are all called to the same high dignity as children of God.

If we share this same nobility of spirit, then our imperfections must be similar. We do not have immanent knowledge (which belongs to the eternal), we have a disposition towards evil, we can defect from truth/goodness, etc.

Quote:
I think he does require a certain perfection otherwise what is the purpose of our testing? What is the purpose of our imperfection? to test how imperfect we actually are, are we a type of prototype?
I used to think of life as a test or trial, but I'm not so sure anymore.
I don't think we were specifically created to be tested.
Speaking from a Christian perspective, I believe we were originally created for an earthly paradise, to know God and be known by him in that setting. The idea of a Fall radically changes this. We became mortal, and with a knowledge of Good and Evil, we also became able to commit evil.
For if you don't understand the difference, you can not do evil.
For evil, I believe you must have the intention, and the intention requires knowledge. If a crane drops something on someone and kills them, has the crane committed an evil act? That is surely an absurd idea, for a crane is an inanimate object. It simply did what it did. It had no notion of doing something wrong or evil. Nor do we prosecute children below a certain age for doing something deemed otherwise criminal, for they do not possess the reason or knowledge to understand what they did was wrong.
So in order to do evil, we must know we are doing evil (this runs contrary to my Platonism, btw). Anything else is merely accidental or tragic without culpability.

So our purpose changed after the Fall.
We were now able to commit acts in the knowledge that they were right or wrong. We could act with evily intent. Of course, justice is a virtue and a good God must possess such virtues. Thus a good God is a just God. And justice requires that evil be punished. So now we have been opened up to the possibility of damnation. However, to offset this, God made available to us a higher destiny which was not at first set out for us. That we may transcend this world and be received into the Beatific Vision, that is to say into the full presence of God in the eternal realm where he abides (Heaven). So I dont believe we were created with the purpose of being on trial. Rather I see this as a development after the Fall. and of course, it belongs to the nature of justice that evil be punished and good rewarded.

BTW, this new destiny opens up another area of theology which is touched on by Aquinas and some others, and which involves a very interesting specualtion about a kind of temporal paradox which wouldn't be out of place in a sci-fi/fantasy story. But let's leave that for another time Very Happy
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 01:13 pm
@Cathain phil,
So by your reasoning you actually dont know if god made us imperfect or not but he imposed a certain judgement upon as if we were. Now judgement involves eternal damnation and an eternity in hell, just for not being perfect. He creates a species that he could possible work out he is not capable of making perfect but insists it attempts perfection and if it fails then its in the fire box. I take it you just fear this nutter and not exactly like him?
 
Aedes
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 01:49 pm
@xris,
xris;102451 wrote:
A simple question ,why did god make us imperfect and then expect perfection?
In my understanding of the tradition, he only expected perfection in Eden, and free will on this matter came down to forbidding Adam and Eve from eating the fruit.

Since the exile from the garden perfection is no longer expected -- it is rewarded.
 
prothero
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 02:08 pm
@xris,
xris;102446 wrote:
You either dont know or not prepared to explain. Just tell me if he is consciously aware of his creation?

Well there are entire books written about these things but in simplistic form:
God is rational agent. As Einstein would agree.
The world is in a sense: emmanation of spirit; a manifestation of the divine.
God takes in and retains the experience of the world.

The best (although inadequate) analogy for the relationship between god and the world is that between your mind and your body.
Is your heart part of you? Is it you? "You" transcend your material composition. The divine "transcends" the material world while being completely "immanent" within. The self organizing properties of nature, the tendency towards order, life, mind, experience is spirit working throught matter with the goal of creation of value.

The divine is the source of being, of potential, of experience. The world is potentiality becoming actuality.
 
xris
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 03:01 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;102476 wrote:
In my understanding of the tradition, he only expected perfection in Eden, and free will on this matter came down to forbidding Adam and Eve from eating the fruit.

Since the exile from the garden perfection is no longer expected -- it is rewarded.
Reward is by being perfect, as imperfect beings perfection is impossible. We go to heaven or hell the reward or punishment.

---------- Post added 11-08-2009 at 04:04 PM ----------

prothero;102479 wrote:
Well there are entire books written about these things but in simplistic form:
God is rational agent. As Einstein would agree.
The world is in a sense: emmanation of spirit; a manifestation of the divine.
God takes in and retains the experience of the world.

The best (although inadequate) analogy for the relationship between god and the world is that between your mind and your body.
Is your heart part of you? Is it you? "You" transcend your material composition. The divine "transcends" the material world while being completely "immanent" within. The self organizing properties of nature, the tendency towards order, life, mind, experience is spirit working throught matter with the goal of creation of value.

The divine is the source of being, of potential, of experience. The world is potentiality becoming actuality.
I have scrutinised your post and I think your saying he is a conscious god capable of realising his creation. Could you confirm this , please?
 
Aedes
 
Reply Sun 8 Nov, 2009 03:33 pm
@xris,
xris;102488 wrote:
Reward is by being perfect, as imperfect beings perfection is impossible. We go to heaven or hell the reward or punishment.
Adam and Eve were not condemned to hell according to the Bible -- it says nothing about their afterlife. Yet they are the only example to my knowledge in the entire Canon of God himself imposing a specific punishment for a specific act.[/COLOR][/COLOR]
 
 

 
  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » Christianity
  3. » If God created us...
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 04/20/2019 at 11:29:36