The Nature of God

Over the course of my life (since childhood) I have pondered whether or not God does or does not exist. After years of personal research aided my a number of persons more well versed than myself, I can tell you without a doubt that he does. This hypothesis is not born of “faith” or a need for connection to or guidance from nor attribution to a higher power; but merely in the observation of events around, both personally and globally. My first love was psychology. Even from a young age, I have found a great deal of fascination in the inner workings of the mind. From the ability of the mind to trap people in imaginary worlds to the mind’s effect on the body in healing itself, I have been fascinated with each and every mechanism that makes up the mind, both mechanical and tactile as well as the philosophical and intangible. It is from this fascination that my near obsession with learning the nature of a being who theoretically exists that I began my decades long quest to understand the nature of God. Through direct and personal experience as well as indirect and communal experience, I have determined through scientific method as well as empirical “heart felt” analysis that I have determined the nature of God. My theory is that God is no more noble or sadistic than any one of us. And like us, God has both positive and negative aspects. Now imagine a human being given full autonomous power over all things. Imagine the effect of that power. I don’t believe I have to quote Lord Acton to provide you with the scary and nightmarish implications that this has. Naturally, I could not question the existence of God without also questioning the existence of Satan or the opposing force. I don’t believe that Satan exists. If you had the power to assign all your worst attributes to another, fictional version of yourself would you? Especially if doing so, insured that your faithful would remain faithful and in fact through the actions of your “other self” be even more devoted and worshipful? Mankind uses propaganda all the time, I don’t see why it would be inconceivable that God would as well.

Rather than promote to you my belief or hypothesis as dogma or fact, I will tell you a little about how this originated briefly. My basis for this conclusion is in psychology and not really in theology, biology, evolution, etc. but neither does it exclude the other disciplines at all. In fact, without knowledge of these aspects we would not be able to understand God’s nature. Much like you can understand an author or artists mind by exploring their work, I believe you can do the same with God. Starting with the beginning, from the creation of the universe, the big bang (the infant stage) to the existence of modern man (adolescence), each and every element speaks of a mentally evolving being who shares much more in common with modern man than they do with perfectly just, noble and righteous version of God that is the center piece of most religions. Mankind is as creative as its creator when analyzing the various aspects of the world and explaining God’s connection of involvement with them. The most telling is the paraphrased “God works in mysterious ways.” Essentially, this statement in itself dismisses the possibility that we can ever understand God or why or why “he” has not done something. This phrase is often used when determining the nature of events that we would characterize as evil or “bad.” Additionally, the phrase is used to imply that these events will ultimately lead to a common or greater good; thus allowing us to move on from this event in anticipation of some greater, more positive event to come at some undetermined date or time. But, this is not the case, in my opinion. Have you ever asked yourself why, for instance, Hitler killed the Jews, or what drives serial killers or why some people are so promiscuous, greedy or stubborn? Often times, this can be traced to some significant life event; but more common than not, it is simply the way they are; and it defies explanation.

As I am a great fan of the early Greek philosophers, I believe their religion also had it best. God would be more appropriately thought of in terms of the nature of the Greek gods. None of them ultimately beyond moral reproach. The same gods who gave life to man, provided us with fertile fields and miraculous blessings also punished us for the sake of their own vanity or blood lust or abducted us for their pleasure. In my hypothesis, the nature of God as defined by Christianity is the closest and farthest away; primarily seen in the Books of Job and Revelations. I actually think that a pop culture reference defined it best when in the episode where Homer predicts the date of the “Rapture”. He tries to warn everyone: “God loves you, and He’s going to kill you!”

So brief summation (on my theory), the basis of God’s nature is that of man, corrupted by absolute power and isolation; Satan exists only as a scapegoat and tool of propaganda; we’re better off ceasing all war and conflict and working together for the advancement and stewardship of all mankind as God ultimately looks at us as his own personal ant farm; bearing sugar in one hand and the magnifying glass in the other.

While I enjoy this idea, it has been essentially proven impossible by our own history. Mankind cannot work together for the betterment of ourselves because we are unable, as a species, to define what our advancement should be. And because people are so convinced that their way is the correct way, conflict arises when opposing opinions come into contact.

I apologize for not addressing the rest of your post but it is essentially all opinion and it’s pretty pointless for me to tell you that your opinion is wrong.

Thanks for reading the portion that you did! Apologies for not addressing my notion of mankind working together more thoroughly in my post. I agree that conflict is inherent in man’s nature; but not always. We do from time to time manage to work together and put aside our own self interests; this occurs mostly when it would be a benefit or provide a greater result than we alone can achieve. I don’t believe that even if we adopted a humanist stance that we could create the oft dreamed of Eutopia; but we could indeed make things better. I suppose I am naive in my hopes that mankind could set aside all differences and work together in a more logical sense as that the basis for a lot of our differences (religion) is, I feel, farcical.

I want to also take the time to address the reason I posted this. I am looking for thoughts on my opinion; harsh judgments and glowing praise alike. If I have the gumption to write this, I should have the gumption to have it challenged and discussed. This is a philosophy board; not math. So bring it haha!

Nice theory and it works well.

The only thing that I would object to is that it is very human based.
That is, the humans are the most evolved beings in the universe and hence God must have human qualities.
Those in a position of authority are not always the most intelligent.
It could be possible that God has sub-human qualities and is a bumbling fool who makes far too many mistakes (ape like).

If a peaceful race of aliens were watching over us;
Would they have a concept of God?
Would it equate to our concept of God?
To these aliens, humans may appear to them as apes appear to humans.

To the original poster: the way you mention god seems to suggest that god is seperate from humanity . . . do you believe this to be the case? If so, why?

Very true medi.
Thank you.

Power corrupts humans because the more we get the more we want, but not all of us are corrupted by this temptation. Therefore might God not be tempted, especially since He is already so powerful He created the universe that spawned us. And if He was tempted to abuse His power, what could He do to us that some of us aren’t already doing to others–except maybe live a live forever?

The question of the nature of God is easy. God is Truth/Truth is God. The absence of God is non-Truth or a lie. A lie does not exist except in the human mind, and dies with that mind. Also evil is merely the human enactment of lies, which shows that Satan/hell do not exist except as a symbols for the evil we do or are tempted to do.

Great questions.

Mine is: is there a nature of God that we humans haven’t given to it?

Nice opening post, themanthatknewtoomuch:

— Over the course of my life (since childhood) I have pondered whether or not God does or does not exist. After years of personal research aided my a number of persons more well versed than myself, I can tell you without a doubt that he does. This hypothesis is not born of “faith” or a need for connection to or guidance from nor attribution to a higher power; but merely in the observation of events around, both personally and globally.
O- We can only say that something as trancendent as God exist or not by a leap of faith and not by anything revealed in our personal research in itself. What you observe is rather limited and finite. How, without a hint of faith, or imagination, can you make a conclusion about the infinite?

— My theory is that God is no more noble or sadistic than any one of us.
O- Or represented as that by those with a need to project onto the Beyond, an agent with whom they can plead and transact an gain a measure of control on what is otherwise a reality that is beyond our power to control.

— As I am a great fan of the early Greek philosophers, I believe their religion also had it best. God would be more appropriately thought of in terms of the nature of the Greek gods. None of them ultimately beyond moral reproach. The same gods who gave life to man, provided us with fertile fields and miraculous blessings also punished us for the sake of their own vanity or blood lust or abducted us for their pleasure.
O- Certainly not Plato’s God. And as far as Hesiod, Zeus was admirable, though often impotent before the power of Fortune. If there is a true God-equivalent in greek religion, then it would be Fate.

— we’re better off ceasing all war and conflict and working together for the advancement and stewardship of all mankind as God ultimately looks at us as his own personal ant farm; bearing sugar in one hand and the magnifying glass in the other.
O- If we are better of this way, then why retain the unelegant add-on of “God”?

Wow amazing!! Loving the feedback and questions. Will respond to each and every one as they have come.

Meditation, thanks for the new thoughts and questions! To be honest, I did give a lot of consideration to the possibility of alien life; partially because the vastness of the universe would suggest that there could a significant amount of other worlds with different types of life forms and therefore possibly different evolutionary paths; both physically and mentally. I believe it could be quite possible that each world may in fact have it’s own god/god-like authorities. But for the purposes of my theory, I presumed two very big presumptions 1) we are the model of all life in the universe 2) our god is the only in the universe.

In your statement though I found a very interesting concept; that God possesses sub-human qualities but may ultimately, as far as the highest evolved life form be concerned, a bumbling fool. With that concept in play, I think it more likely that humanity would be a distinct priority to God; as he would feel more comfortable in interacting with life forms that he possesses the advantage of power over; but life forms that are not more intelligent than “he.”

Would a more intelligent (non-human) God be more or less likely to structure worlds differently and systems differently?
Would the variation suggest to you, as it does to me, that this level of creativity is no different than that of man or more s

Thanks for the question nano! I hope I understand your question correctly. I believe that God is separate from humanity in the sense that a monarchy is separate from it’s people. Being part of and beyond it. That man and God are from the same source; but God possesses the “power” to wield the power of the source or is simply the source given autonomy; much like a king is as human as you or I; but possesses the power and authority of the king.

I hope that answered your question.

Thanks for the thoughts Paineful! Not all of us are corrupted by temptation; however, I guess what I was not clear about in my original posting is that God is not a simple amalgam of mankind. God has “his” own personality; and the personality is as different as mine is from yours or the next persons. And to the point that God could do no worse than we are doing to ourselves, well that is the essence of my theory.

I believe God is Truth in the sense that God determines or “sets” the Truth. I don’t believe that evil can be broken down into one simple act such as a lie or lies. There have been incidents of evil enacted with the purity of truth or rather deception.

Thanks for your response Omar! I am going to reply to each point below as it was written.

-Exactly

Hi Jonquil, I almost missed yours. Thanks for the question! I believe a lot of the attributes we associate with God traditionally are those humans have given to “him” absolutely. A point of my theory and “research” is more geared to determining which of those attributes are actually true and which are false. There are instances where we have prescribed many different attributes and even personalities to God. From Jesus Christ to Shiva the destroyer, we have placed many names on God; each one culturally unique, but possessing similar attributes to others.

Heh. Well I appreciate your openness, it’s a nice change of pace from those who have it all right and have come here to show us the error of our ways. But it would be pretty hypocritical for me to criticize your feelings on what god is to you given that I currently do not believe in the existence of any god and my thoughts and ideas on what god could be if one did exist are all over the map.

Just curious, “what id a god?” And then, assuming that gets answered properly, “What/Who is The God?”

But don’t think I am asking because I don’t know. I am asking because I find it extremely rare for those who profess that God exists and even more so for those who profess that God Doesn’t exist, that they actually even know what a god is much less what/who The God is. Yet they never give up their certainty and arguing endlessly of the details.

Satan is NOT the opposition to God. Satan represents the opposition to BELIEF in God (due to wanting to BE the only controller of humanity by default). You see no opponent to the belief in God??? :-k

Now tell me again, how Satan doesn’t exist. :-$ :shifty:

Thank you No-body!! I believe in free exchange of ideas free of agenda. I always try to have emotionless (within reason) exchanges when in the pursuit of knowledge. Though passion can be a good thing sometimes, I feel it can cloud the path to true understanding. So rather than think of commenting on my post as “criticizing,” think of it as helping. It does not have to be confined to the core message of my post, but rather the topic. I would be interested to hear anyone’s thoughts on the subject. Especially, someone who doesn’t believe in God; but has an idea of what they think God would be.

hello James. Glad you responded. It gives me a fantastic opportunity to set the tone of the discussion. I have answered your inquiries below.

–The man: And your tone becomes even more dismissive. But not in the sense of critique, more in that of a math teacher to a student. You seem to express your beliefs as facts. Naturally, in terms of religion, the goal is belief and faith in God, so yes Satan is the opponent of God in that God, in religious terms, wants us to worship/believe in him and in your terms, Satan opposes that belief; so therefore opposes God. Perhaps it would be more helpful and constructive to tell me how Satan does exists as opposed to dismissing my disbelief without a counter-proof or theory. I also want to be clear that when I use the term Satan, I use it as somewhat universal term for evil. I could have just as easily used Hades, Shiva or so on.

I can tell you are a zealot. One who knows; rather than believes or theorizes. I believe my theory is correct, but do not with all certainty know. I tend to maintain a policy of Socractic ignorance. Hence why I posted this in the first place; to receive feedback and ideas on my theory. To be introduced to different angles of the discussion. I have expressed my belief as a theory. I expect anyone who posts to question the theory in it’s essence, as several have already done (much to my pleasure and gratitude) or present a counter theory. Tell me how it doesn’t work or why it would work. Respectfully, don’t tell me it’s wrong or be dismissive; especially if you can not or do not present information that constructively counters it.

For others, as you can tell, I do not get along with zealots or those who “know” well at all. So please, please, please know that you can poke holes in my theory all day long and I will welcome it. I didn’t come here to preach my theory as gospel or present it as fact. It is what I believe. And any belief should be able to be questioned and held up to the light of day. Now you may not change my mind, but you will give me something to think about. And at the end of the day I hope that I will have given you something to think about as well. But do not tell me it’s wrong for the sake of telling me it’s wrong. Nor attack me for the sake of attack. For as long as I am responding, know that I will not respond to your post if it is anything less than what I have outlined above.

So can I take it since in all of that rant of how improper I am, you never answered the first question I asked; the question that reveals whether your conclusion actually has any merit, that you do not know?

I asked very distinctly, “what is a god?”

I explained that I very rarely find anyone who can answer even that simple question yet they feel free to formulate opinions concerning The God’s nature. If you don’t even know what a god is, how can you even begin to think you know anything of The God. Saying that The God is “The Supreme Being” is a bit tautological (pointless) and doesn’t answer the question I asked.

And again, as usual, the accuser is the offender. It is you who have posited an opinion on the “Nature of God”, not I. You also claimed that Satan doesn’t exist (not I), so I explained a little of what that word “Satan” means and asked you to think again.

I gave the critique for which you asked in the form of a question, one that you failed to answer at all in favor of ranting about how improper I am and calling me a Zealot (extremely presumptuous). I never said you were wrong. I merely said that I seldom find any who can answer a simple, straight and crucial question - “what is a god”.