An argument for God's existence

Either you assume that there is purpose in this world or not. If you see purpose being worked out then you have your unnamed God.

And, for some, like me [here and now], all of this unfolds in a No God world where human interactions are just one more manifestation of an essentially meaningless and purposeless existence going all the way back to…what exactly?

Or, instead, sure, many of these communities invented “a God/the God” said to provide the community with a meaningful and purposeful existence. Not only that but if someone in the community worships and adores this God and obeys His commandments on this side of the grave, then on Judgment Day they have a chance to go Up instead of Down.

But, given that, according to Michael Shermer…

“In the past 10,000 years, humans have devised roughly 100,000 religions based on roughly 2,500 gods. So the only difference between myself and the believers is that I am skeptical of 2,500 gods whereas they are skeptical of 2,499 gods. We’re only one God away from total agreement.”

…how are the dots to be connected between mere mortals, religion and God?

Here I can only keep coming back to this:

Peace and religion? In regard to what? In regard to abortion, the role of government, war and peace, social and economic justice, human sexuality, “value voter” issues?

Peace here in what sense, based on the “wisdom” of which particular religious denomination, based on the assumptions that which particular human behaviors here and now will favor you on Judgment Day?

Again, the assumption here seems clear: in regard to all of the issues I note above [and hundreds more] there is a “best lesson” to be learned and a “best way” to embody it.

And even though there are hundreds of different spiritual paths out there offering up hundreds of different scriptures, somehow “we” can just know the “right way” to immortality and salvation.

And this works for you. It comforts and consoles you. And, no doubt, I’m taken back to the time when it comforted and consoled me too. And, in having lost that, my reaction to those who are still somehow manage to sustain it in this world brings out a bit of rancor in me.

Nothing personal I can assure you. I respect both your intelligence and your introspective honesty. I’m just flustered because I am no longer able to share in it myself.

Hi Fanman

Whilst I agree that our empirical observations will never conclusively prove or disprove God, I disagree with your suggestion that God cannot be proven otherwise. If a particular belief is paradoxical, then it is false by definition. It is not true of Existence by definition. Thus, if it is such that rejecting God is paradoxical, then we are rationally obliged to acknowledge God. Consider the argument in the following thread: … 1&t=195805

It shows that rejecting God is clearly paradoxical.

Have a nice day,

It’s covered in the above post’s link, but I’ll just state it here since you say you have nothing to add to my points about your post and you’re asking to hear about it.

One premise is simply common sense, or just a tautological clarification even - that human conception cannot be of that which is beyond human conception.
The problem for “God” becomes apparent in a second premise, which is that the thing that makes God “God” must necessarily be beyond human conception in order to qualify as divine to us.
In the absence of human conception beyond human conception, all we end up conceiving, despite our best efforts will be of everything and anything that will be short of “beyond human conception”, including the essence of divinity. So no matter how much mundanity there is “supposed to be” to God that we can see, we see nothing of the only thing we need to see to verify “the rest” as completing the picture as “God”, or even that there is any “the rest” at all. We just see mundanity within our mundane human conception and thus we see no God regardless of how great what we see might be, and regardless of any promises and faith that there is “more”. And even these promises of/“faith” in “beyond human conception” will be in terms of human conception and within it, so they won’t even reflect what they purport to reflect.

So the whole enterprise of “God” is futility. He doesn’t and cannot exist to us.

Hello iambiguous, that last post sounds a lot like you (judging from our past exchanges). I’m sorry that everything is so meaningless and purposeless in your world. I can feel it too, sometimes, but it is those narratives that pull me back on my feet to listen. It is yet another book that excites me by explaining a bit about the biblical symbology, explaining how things were meant, now that our generation has lost touch. It gives me an idea of something good but flawed – flawed by me as much as by anyone else. It gives me an idea of how we can overcome this problem and I follow it.

I quite like Michael Shermer but knowing his background and disappointment at religion I have come to understand that he can hardly say anything else. The problem is, as I have said before, that he (and you?) is reading the Bible as though it weren’t symbolic language, as though the ancients would have any other way to efficiently pass on the wisdom they had gained. That is because he came from an evangelical background and read the Bible the way they do.

If you could read the Bible in the right way, I’m sure it would help you better. One book that could help there is The Language of Creation: Cosmic Symbolism in Genesis by Matthieu Pageau. There is even a Kindle Version. I read it recently and, although I had my doubts to begin with, it started making sense. The symbology can be adopted throughout the Bible.

I know that it bugs you, but seeing as we’re stuck in this life, we might as well make the best of it. I choose to find meaning in doing the lesser harm and the most good. It has already made a difference. I’m sorry that you have no part in that, I hope you find your peace.

Sometimes you remind me of a character in the Narnia series that was changed into a dragon. Every time he tried to talk to people, smoke and fire came out. It made him very lonely.

Can a finite human conceive of the Infinite? You would say no.
Can a finite human conceive of a finite existence? The answer is no.
Therefore, can a finite human conceive of an infinite existence? The answer is yes because if we view existence as finite, we view existence as coming from non-existence. This is absurd. So, just as a non-triangular human can conceive of a triangle, a finite human can conceive of the infinite. The finite human cannot know what it’s like to be Omnipresent like Existence Is Omnipresent, but the finite human clearly knows what is Omnipresent. Existence Is Omnipresent and Infinite. If the finite human rejects this, the finite human believes in the existence of non-existence. Such a belief is paradoxical. In other words, it is not true of Existence/God.

But the thing is CR…

What if all of us were never born and never die.

Not just one being?

Is that too hard for you to think about?

Because… that solution makes more sense than yours.

Let’s say that you have an ‘all powerful’ being…

I love to use sex arguments for almost anything…

Does this being have sex with everyone in every possible combination? Now granted… let’s assume omnipresence… I have no fucking clue (in me) and in order for this hypothetical being to know everything it has to EXACTLY know what it’s like to be me… anyways, I have no clue what most people look like naked… none whatsoever, from the perspective of MY EYES!!

This raises a contradiction, god knows what everyone looks like naked or god knows exactly what I know and hardly knows what anyone looks like naked …

I’m going with myself on this one… I genuinely haven’t seen most people naked. And even if I were omnipresent, again IIIIII!!! (Emphatic use of “I”) haven’t done it through my personal body and eyes.

I don’t see how you’re trying to make your arguments when the contradiction is so obvious.


Quite obviously incorrect, as evidenced every day of everyone’s life ever - always being a finite one of finite things.
And also evidenced by the logic of trying to “fit” infinity into finite human conception.

Thus you end up forcing yourself to accept absurdity “because it would be absurd to do otherwise”. Rejecting absurdity only to accept another absurdity is no solution - at this point you might as well do the reverse and it’d be just as absurd.

This is a non-sequitur because “shape” has nothing to do with conceptual constraints. You’re trying to create a false analogue between having any attribute and being able to conceive of another attribute, when the argument specifically applies only to attributes that limit conceptual constraints (e.g. finitude). Obviously if you have a conceptual constraint you can’t conceive beyond it - by definition - making the generalised “triangle” analogue a little bit dishonest.

The finite human can clearly think they know what is omnipresent/infinite, and be mistaken. It’s absurd to accept absurdity, even if it appears like the only other options are absurd. That’s why, when everything seems to point to absurdity, something is going to be wrong with your premises.

Hi Certainly real,

I read your argument, but I do not understand it enough to do it justice in reply. This is what I think; from my perspective, just because something is conceptually possible, does not mean that it is real. On the other hand, impossibility is very difficult to show, because our knowledge of existence is not complete. Therefore, I think that because the existence of God is conceptually possible, it doesn’t mean that he exists. And because God’s existence is not impossible, it doesn’t mean that he exists. From my perspective, God’s existence cannot be proved or disproved, the best we can do is make logical arguments which try to show either that he exists or doesn’t exist.

Hi Silhouette,

Your argument makes sense to me and is logical, but what if human perception includes the capacity to comprehend divine things? Would you argue that every religious or mystical text was created solely from people’s imaginations?

Using an example of something “divine” that we can relate to like “karma”. Apparently, a mystical force that rewards or punishes people depending on whether we are negative or positive in our conduct. If you gave £1000 to a church and six months later met the woman of your dreams, then explained what happened to someone who believed in karma, who presented karma as an explanation to you, would you not be able to comprehend that “divine” force, obviously you would, because even though it is “divine” you understand it. Not completely, but you understand enough to have an idea of how it works.

The question is, would you donate another £1000 to the church? :slight_smile:

I will try and elaborate Fanman

  1. Can something be Omnipotent without being Inifnite/Omnipresent? No
  2. Can something be truly Perfect without being Omnipotent? No
  3. Can something become Infinite/Omnipresent from a non-Infinite and non-Omnipresent state? No
  4. Therefore, either that which is Omnipresent/Existence is necessarily Perfect, or it not Perfect.

If It is not Perfect, then Omnipotence and Perfection are hypothetically impossible (as demonstrated by 3). We cannot understand/make sense of impossibilities. For example, we cannot make sense of round squares or something coming from nothing. If Perfection (a perfect existence/being) is impossible, then we should not be able to understand Perfection. But we do understand Perfection. Since 3 is true, Existence Is necessarily Perfect. In other words, God necessarily Exists. This is not just a matter of hypothetical possibility. 3 shows that it’s impossible for something to become God. So either there is a God or there isn’t. Since we understand God, there is a God. Ask yourself:

How can an imperfect existence have any idea of what a perfect existence is independently of a perfect existence? It cannot. If Existence is not perfect, then imperfect beings like us should not be able to have any idea of what a Perfect Existence/Being is. But we have an idea. So a Perfect Existence/Being is not non-existent.

See my reply to you in the other thread.

Yeah of course - and I’m not saying that it’s impossible to have profound experiences, full of awe and mystery and power and all the things that make you think you’ve seen beyond your mortal coil etc. That definitely happens, but it’s just nature doing unusual and intense, but perfectly natural things.

The problem with being able to comprehend divine things is that if they fall entirely within human conception, they’re not really any more special than anything mundane - what would it be that made them divine if we could just normally understand them like we do anything else? If there isn’t something “beyond” our human limits, they don’t really qualify. And if they’re partly within our human limits and partly beyond, then the parts within our human conception are just normal to us, and the parts beyond are inaccessible to us. So either way, to us, we’re only experiencing something normal and mundane like anything else. We aren’t even able to conceive of something beyond our conception to even suggest it might exist (because if we did, it would be within our human conception). To us, there might as well be nothing “beyond” any “parts within our human conception”. So whenever we even speak of “divinity” or “God” we’re thinking in terms of our human conception, which means that what we’re speaking of doesn’t actually qualify as what we’re intending to speak of. The whole thing is all just impossibility.

“Karma” can easily be explained in other ways that don’t require mystery - for example a combination of statistics and confirmation bias. Correlations can easily be tested scientifically, for example through tracking a large sample size of people donating £1000 to a church and having them report any changes in their lives, positive and negative, and comparing this group to a control group who did not donate £1000 to a church. I hear that these kinds of studies have been done many times, and they never remotely show any pattern relating things like donating to churches and good things happening to you any better or worse than would be expected from random chance. But importantly, even if a significant correlation did consistently emerge, that wouldn’t specifically indicate “divine force”. Further investigation would be warranted to measure what’s going on, and things could be narrowed down to natural forces just the same as they always have been scientifically. The problem with divinity is that it isn’t falsifiable - there aren’t really any ways to set up experiments to specifically confirm or deny divinity as an active component - and that’s even your own argument, so I know you won’t have any objections to any of this. Divinity is just not a thing that has any legitimate in-roads to our understanding of the world. One is just understanding nature as mundanely as they always did, so I’ll keep my £1000 thanks :smiley:

I find it strange that we are talking about attributes of the one thing we can’t imagine. The whole point of the biblical mythology is that God is out of sight in so many ways. The description of metaphysical intervention is mythical, but something that was used to grasp the strangeness of our existence in the presence of consciousness. In our world, everything requires a cause, but we still haven’t grasped what it is we are in. Science is observing a universe that doesn’t always do what we expect, going by what we already know.

Back when we weren’t preoccupied by gadgetry, and weren’t so confirmed materialists, people observed what happened around them and came to conclusions. They weren’t the idiots that some atheists would try to make of them. They used the terminology that they had and described influences on their world, the makeup of it, the constants they observed. They came to the conclusion that, for some reason, it all seemed to have a design. Someone must be behind it all, but that was just the start of it. Whoever it was, he was hidden from sight. They looked to the stars, they looked to the seasons, they observed the coming and going of floods (small and large).

They also discovered rules for community that were important for survival. The built on these and even wrote a history to give themselves an identity. The epics describe the imagination of mankind in developing a mythology to live by. They developed many things that we take for granted. We have built on what the ancients developed and at least ten thousand years later we are building still. We know a lot of things, but we still don’t know what this “life” is. We still have no idea of what caused the universe and for that matter, what caused sentient life to emerge out of it.

The symbology of the bible describes a cosmology that we have long put behind us, because we think we have the facts. There are still major questions to be answered and many things wrong with our civilization. We are far from “perfect”, whatever that would mean for a life form. What makes us think we could reason what is perfect? What makes us think we can think things through better than the ancients? We can’t even bring ourselves to try and understand them. Logic may be something that serves in many cases, but when three dimensional beings are trying to imagine a four dimensional entity, it’s like ants trying to understand nuclear physics.


I would just say I don’t know. Don’t you think that could be problematic? I mean, to claim that everything religious or spiritual; past, present and future is imaginary, strikes me as being very difficult to substantiate.

I can’t really argue with what you say here, because it is rational and supported. But where we seemingly differ, is that I would be willing to take a chance with karma on faith. If everything were so clear-cut, why do people have beliefs, would you claim that people with beliefs are irrational because they contradict what can be demonstrated empirically?

Depending on what they believed, I wouldn’t claim that everyone with beliefs is irrational. I wouldn’t call a Christian irrational, because their belief is based upon an existing framework dating back thousands of years, even though I don’t agree with it. In the end, I think that it comes down to our world views, as Bob said, some people see purpose. I just don’t believe that my knowledge (or lack of knowledge) allows me to determine whether they are wrong, right or somewhere in-between.

Certainly real,

Thank you for taking the time to elaborate. I kind of get what you are saying, but to me, it doesn’t add up. Conceptual things don’t necessarily demonstrate a reality, even if they seem logical.

I understand, but this is more case of if you reject x, it amounts to a paradox. If you accept x, it avoids the paradox. For example, we are aware of the concept of Infinity and Existence. By definition, Existence exists. Nobody will deny this because it is paradoxical to deny. Isn’t ‘Existence’ just a concept or conceptual thing? Must it (Existence) not be at least as real as us? Is this concept not such that it is necessarily real (as in Existence is really real)?

Some may argue that Existence is finite. If you then show them that believing in a finite existence logically amounts to believing in something in nothing or something coming from nothing, they are then faced with the following:

  1. Believe Existence Is Infinite
  2. Believe something can come from nothing or be in nothing

2 is clearly absurd/paradoxical. So they are rationally obliged to believe in 1 are they not? And since Existence is at least as real as us and it is Infinite, my question to you is the following:

Infinity is also a conceptual thing. Is something Infinite necessarily at least as real as we are?

Whilst I value religion, I’m not too concerned with scripture in this thread. I know that Perfection = that which no greater than can be conceived of. I know that if x is not Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnibenevolent towards good, Omnimalevolent towards evil, Infinite, Omnipresent, Glorious etc. then it is not Perfect. I understand Omnipotence, glory, Omnipresence, Infiniteness and so on. They are not concepts that are as meaningless to me as a 100th sense or dimension. I can talk about God/Perfection at length. I cannot talk about a 100th sense. So clearly, God/Perfection is meaningful/understandable. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be able to talk about meaningfully.

With that being said, I acknowledged that True Perfection Is such that It Is better than what I am understanding or describing it as, but it is necessarily at least as good as I conceive It to be.

For example, we may come to understand additional things about triangles in the future. But it will necessarily be the case that our understanding will not contradict the fact that a triangle has three sides. Similarly, my understanding of Perfection cannot contradict the fact that if x is not Omnipotent/Omnipresent/Infinite, then x is certainly not Perfect.

Well, I suppose you’re not talking about anything to do with God, since your only source is scripture. Perhaps it is just your imagination struggling with its idea of perfection, which you somehow connect with God. Although that too is a concept with which you are not really happy. So, what is it that you’re talking about?

Are we in agreement with the following:

  1. Perfection = that which no greater than can be conceived of
  2. There is nothing better than a perfect existence. Therefore:
  3. Perfection = a perfect existence

I believe I have an idea of what a perfect existence would look like. For starters, in such an existence, at the very least, everyone gets what they truly/perfectly deserve. Before going any further, can we agree that this is something that we both understand? As in it is objectively true that it’s perfection for everyone to get what they truly/perfectly deserve and that an existence wherein which this is not the case, is certainly not perfect/perfection?