a reply to: JonU2
Just because you use a toilet everyday does not make you a master plumber. The same thing is true about religion. The idea of God is much bigger and
more complex than the way most atheists think about God.
Most people think of God in two ways based on philosophical materialism or realism. With philosophical materialism as a belief system, either God is
an imaginary friend or someone you would be able to meet in reality. People then argue if God is an imaginary friend then he is irrelevant since he
isn’t real. And if God is a person, introduce me to him and have him demonstrate his powers. So if God can’t be experienced in reality as a
person, then God doesn’t exist.
This way of looking at God as an object in reality, or a figment of the imagination, requires the acceptance of the assumption philosophical
materialism as an absolute fact. The thing is science has shown philosophical materialism is a delusional fantasy and just another belief system or
dogma. Contrary to the chagrin of the philosophical materialists, we live in a spiritual Universe where consciousness exists and participates in
changing reality through observation.
Since philosophical materialism is a fairy tale, we need a more sophisticated way of looking at and understanding the nature of God. I've been
leaning toward Apophatic theology lately:
With this way of thinking, God is not an object person to experience in reality. God is manifested in the way the Holy Trinity is interpreted. With
this way of thinking about God, God is perfect, complete, desiring nothing, lacking nothing, and needing nothing. God is absolute perfection and
unity and beyond distinctions created through the use of language. This is a very different way of thinking about God than as an imaginary friend or
someone you meet in person. Since God is absolute unity, complete, and perfect God cannot be a creature with limitations.
With the Apophatic way of thinking, "the essence of God is completely unknowable; mankind can know God only through His energies". So we can only
know God through our experiences as an indirect way of seeing fragments or glimpses of the greatness that is God's infinite perfection.
"Apophatic theology, also known as negative theology, is a form of theological thinking and religious practice which attempts to approach God, the
Divine, by negation, to speak only in terms of what may not be said about the perfect goodness that is God"
"Dionysius describes the kataphatic or affirmative way to the divine as the "way of speech": that we can come to some understanding of the
Transcendent by attributing all the perfections of the created order to God as its source. In this sense, we can say "God is Love", "God is Beauty",
"God is Good". The apophatic or negative way stresses God's absolute transcendence and unknowability in such a way that we cannot say anything about
the divine essence because God is so totally beyond being. The dual concept of the immanence and transcendence of God can help us to understand the
simultaneous truth of both "ways" to God: at the same time as God is immanent, God is also transcendent. At the same time as God is knowable, God is
also unknowable. God cannot be thought of as one or the other only"
"[t]hat which is infinite is known only to itself. This it is which gives some notion of God, while yet beyond all our conceptions – our very
incapacity of fully grasping Him affords us the idea of what He really is. He is presented to our minds in His transcendent greatness, as at once
known and unknown."
Most philosophical materialists believe there is no purpose to the Universe. Most philosophical materialists believe there is no purpose to
evolution. With this way of thinking the philosophical materialists think the Universe is nothing but meaningless patterns of energy with no one
pattern of energy having more meaning than any other.
For the philosophical materialists evolution has no purpose. Evolution is the result of essentially random events with no outside organizing agent or
influence. For the philosophical materialists consciousness doesn't really exist. Each of us is just a machine carrying out the laws of physics.
And consciousness is just a delusional side effect of activity of the brain. And many philosophical materialists are researching the problem of
consciousness so to finally prove consciousness does not exist. And anytime someone says consciousness doesn't exist immediately punch them as hard
as you can right in the nose.
However, in contrast to the way the philosophical materialists think about reality, this idea that God is both immanence and transcendence is
fascinating to appreciate. Since God is absolute perfection and complete, the Universe was not created out of need and desire but an abundance
flowing out of God. This abundance has no where else to go but to flow back to the absolute unity that is God.
We are the Universe's way of experiencing itself. We are made of the very stuff we are experiencing. The purpose of Universe is to support
evolution. The purpose of evolution is to create ever greater forms of consciousness capable of appreciating the unity that is God. We are all drawn
to the unity that is God. We experience slivers of God's infinite beauty and perfection when we experience greatness in our appreciation of beauty
and performance in ourselves and others. In the end, all the energy of the Universe conscious and unconscious, all flows back to experience unity
with the infinite perfection that is God completing a kind of circuit of reality.
The trinity can be defined as three aspects. Out of the nameless void God spoke and created light and all the forms. All forms are the words of God.
The way nature behaves in patterns represented by mathematics are also the words of God. The second aspect of the trinity is the idea God is the
movement of energy through all the forms. The power of God compels you. There are two principles in the Universe. One principle towards separation
away from God. And another principle of energy flowing to organization, order, and unity with God. And the third aspect of the trinity is conscious
awareness of the other two aspects of the trinity along with two principles of behavior. With this interpretation of the trinity we have immanence
As I said experiencing God's immanence and transcendence is fascinating to appreciate. Although nature behaves in patterns represented by
mathematics, there is also divergence. The wave-like nature of reality means everything is connected to everything else like a giant blob of jello.
Data outliers and experimental errors abound. Rogue waves of energy converge on every level of reality bubbling up creating unimaginable
possibilities in nature. Nature is both order and chaos manifesting itself in a dance of jello.
And through the dance of jello, conscious observers change the way reality is realized. The Universe may operate according to certain patterns of
behaviors represented with the language of mathematics but consciousness is also ripping through he Universe creating paths of unimaginable
possibilities. All for the purpose of allowing consciousness to appreciate bigger pieces of the greatness that is God's perfection and unity with
edit on 11-4-2019 by dfnj2015 because: (no reason given)