What If God Is A Scientist?
“Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous.”
- Albert Einstein, The World As I See It
“The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.”
- C.S. Lewis, British novelist, poet, academic (1898-1963)
One of the most asked questions among people around the world is "Is God real?" Or some variation of it, such as "What is God?", "Why does God allow evil?" or even "Why am I here?" They are all essentially the same question. Feed me because I want answers.
Answers to the unknown. Or the unknowable. Yet we still ask. Not surprisingly, many have devised answers over the years, answers that insult the intelligence of some, but that others cling to so dearly they are prepared to make regular donations to support, even to give their lives for. Or take the lives of others.
First of all, note that in the questions above, the background motivation for them is to learn "How does or can God serve me and my purpose and needs?" One famous quote from US President John F. Kennedy goes "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country." Yet we still want to know what our country and what God can do for us.
"Where does God fit into my life?" not "What can I do to justify my being here in the first place?" Our questions are self-centred. The answers provided by others all tend to sell a product that satisfies that need, then collect proceeds for the answers.
Note that every answer is designed to satisfy personal needs. The answers are custom designed to serve that customer need, not to provide a universal truth. Religions gain followers by offering up a god that will supposedly satisfy those needs.
Inevitably others, often scientists, claim there is no God. Or at least there is no God like that. Atheists and skeptics are so busy debunking false gods they don't have time to address the question of what a real God might be. How, given what we know and what science knows today, can there be any kind of God?
Every concept of God is based on assumptions or premises. Should we be surprised if an invented God meets the needs of someone who is prepared to pay for the services of that God? Should we be surprised if those invented gods fail to meet minimum standards of logic or questions based on common sense?
Everything you believe about God, or everything you disbelieve, is likely based on a concept of God somebody taught you. It is based on assumptions that satisfy personal needs. Do you need a manly God? God is all-powerful and vengeful. Christianity's Old Testament has that kind of God. Do you need a God with maternal qualities? God loves you, will always look out for you, will hold you in the palm of his hand, will look after you when you die. God has those qualities in the Bible's New Testament.
God can be whatever you need. Whatever you are prepared to pay for.
Does that mean there is no God? No. It means that any concept of God based on satisfying the needs of people for a deity that will serve them so long as they keep paying will ultimately fail. They are all based on faulty assumptions. Like effective advertising. It doesn't have to be true, it only has to sell.
And it does. Every concept of God, no matter how absurd to the rest of us, will find some followers, who will pay. The best way to be remembered through history is to tell others that God has spoken to you. There are shrines around the world where people claim that God has spoken to them. The shrines are named after the individuals who received the messages. Or believed and publicly claimed they did.
Science, in general, insists there is no God because God can neither be proven by argument or sensed in any way through sight, hearing, taste, touch, smell. At its base, science uses these as basic premises for existence.
Some use the argument that because there are and have been thousands of different gods over past millennia, it is obvious that they have all been invented by their users/followers. That does not meet the criteria of logic because it denies that one could be real and valid. It also does not recognize that all have one characteristic in common, a strong belief in a supernatural being. Why is this belief so universal no matter what the culture, history or geographical location?
It's worth remembering that "supernatural" does not mean "extra" as in "super fries". It means more like "outside of nature", a force or kind of energy unlike anything we have previously contemplated. Just because something has not previously been contemplated by a human does not mean it does not exist or that it is impossible. Air flight was long believed to be impossible. Then someone contemplated it and made it possible.
Rarely in these debates does anyone raise the fact that there are phenomena that exist for which no one has an adequate explanation, or even a reasonable guess. Ghosts and UFOs that the US military, science or governments have no explanation for would be some examples. There are better examples that would require more space than we have here to explain. TV shows often put these down to examples of early visits to earth by extraterrestrials. Are these any better than religions based on emotions and faulty guesses? I would say no. Their hypotheses are as full of holes as the religions they propose to replace.
One fundamental part of the God debate involves how earth and the universe began. The Bible says that God created everything in six days, then rested on the seventh. No one ever attempts to explain whether the days are earth days, Jupiter days or some kind of God-days. Nor does anyone ever explain why a supernatural being would require rest. We humans require rest to refresh our bodies and set memories and clear trash from our brains. As God has neither physical body nor brain, why would he require rest?
Religions claim that God or gods are supernatural, not subject to natural laws or explanations. Then they set about making up claims for God, what God does, who God cares for, as if their God were a physical being. No matter how much their followers are devoted to these beliefs, their arguments inevitably fail.
Science claims that evolution and fossils destroy the Bible's explanation that God created everything 6,200 or so years ago. Would those be earth years or God-years? Don't laugh about the concept of God-years as it is not even one you can contemplate.
More importantly (to me, perhaps soon to you) should be the question of why a creator, essentially a scientist of unusual skill, would work for a week then stop. Forever. No human creator, artist or scientist would ever stop work after one success. I find it hard to imagine a creator who would work for a bit, then stop forever.
Progress or development, the top argument for evolution, is undisputable. It happens and it can be proven. But the whole concept of evolution itself is full of holes. Unexplainable gaps, for one thing.
Zoologists claim that for a species to be viable, to survive, it must have a minimum base of 30 members. With fewer than that there could be mating, but inbreeding would force the species out of existence within a few generations.
Evolution claims that a new species begins with a single genetic mutation. Even assuming that the newly evolved creature could mate with some other genetically close species, science today has shown that the possibility of the offspring of such inter-species mating being fertile is extremely low. With species survival possibilities near zero, how could so many have survived and thrived to this day?
Imagine yourself as a creator. You try many possibilities, they fail. Then you get one that works. You make more. Then you move on to another creation project. Same routine. Many failures, then eventually a success. If your creations are natural they need instincts for survival and reproduction. And they need to eat. So you have more creating to do. You develop a food chain.
Eventually and inevitably your food chain life web becomes extremely complex. Then what? More work. More planning. More creating. Gaps in your development could be explained by the fact that you created different species at different times. These species, with reproductive instincts, evolve their DNA and in the process create other close species. So new species originate from two very different sources.
Would it not work that way if God were a scientist?
Neither science nor religion would need to modify their beliefs much to accommodate such a radical concept.
I did not set out in this article to prove anything. I hope I have planted a seed of thought in some people. The "God argument" to date has been more like a war with neither side wanting to give a point to the other than a discussion. The argument has been as productive as one that might be fought over the existence of purple elephants. (You can paint an elephant purple, but does that make it real?)
Science denies that anything exists that its members are unable to contemplate, let alone explain. Religion has invented deities and whole spiritual environments around a few experiences that defy explanation. Both have limited their own credibility. A real God would have to be an unlimited concept. Those who debate the topic build walls of limitation around themselves. Then they battle it out with anyone whose opinion differs from theirs.
Let's get serious about coming together. We will never reach any reasonable understanding until we accept that there could be other explanations for the unknown and the unexplainable that we have not considered.
In the final analysis does it matter? Why would God care about atheists or those who have different beliefs from each other? God would stand apart from such trivial debate. No God worth respect would do trivia.
Bill Allin is the author of Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems and hundreds of articles that are available free on the internet. Search for them using the author's name.
Learn more at http://billallin.com