Some readers may recall my post making fun of the press release of a new book by a theologian Edward Feser where he claims to provide five proofs for the existence of his god. My point was that people had been trying for eons to logically prove the existence of any god without success, and there was no reason to think that Feser would be any more successful. Trying to prove the existence of an entity without the use of any evidence is futile.
Feser, not surprisingly, did not like my post and said so in a post of his own. In response, I then put up another post on the topic where, among other things, I said that if anyone really proved the existence of god, that would be huge news and so I would wait for the news media to all report on such a groundbreaking development before reading yet another book making such a claim.
It turns out that Feser has a LOT of fans, rivaling those of Sam Harris in their intensity and devotion to defending their hero, and I had a record number of comments, 296 in all, many of whom angrily took me to task for mocking the whole idea of proving the existence of gods without reading his book. Ah, good times! Anyway, Feser’s book did not produce the big media splash that would have ensued had he actually proved the existence of his god so, alas, I never did read it.
But now there comes a new development that provides just the opportunity for Feser’s book to make a splash. It turns out that the president of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte, a ruthless and murderous authoritarian and thus exactly the kind of political leader Donald Trump admires, has been disparaging god and calling him stupid.
The politician slammed the story of Adam and Eve being tempted by the “forbidden fruit” in a fiery and blasphemous televised speech last Friday, the BBC reported.
“Who is this stupid God? He’s really stupid. You created something perfect, and then you think of an event that would tempt and destroy the quality of your work,” Duterte said.
He also went after the Christian concept of original sin — according to which all humans are tainted by the sin of Adam and Eve.
“You weren’t born yet, but now you have original sin,” he said. “What kind of religion is that? I can’t accept it.”
Another report adds more detail about his contempt for god, taking particular aim at the idea of original sin, not mincing his words.
Duterte lamented in that speech that Adam and Eve’s sin in Christian theology resulted in all the faithful falling from divine grace.
“Who is this stupid God? This son of a bitch is then really stupid,” he said last week. “You were not involved but now you’re stained with an original sin … What kind of a religion is that? That’s what I can’t accept, very stupid proposition.”
Duterte shows that even an awful person can makes some good points.
But here’s the good part. According to the second report, Duterte has issued a challenge, saying that he will resign “if anyone can prove that God exists”, and that “if there’s “one single witness” who can prove, perhaps with a picture or a selfie that a human was “able to talk and to see God,” he will immediately resign.”
So Edward Feser, here’s your chance to be a hero. Confront Duterte with your proofs and convince this ruthless autocrat to resign. Not only would the world be rid of one of the worst leaders, your proofs would become famous.
I for one would then definitely read your book.