Monday Meslier: 28 – To Adore God is To Adore A Fiction


Jean Meslier Portrait

Jean Meslier

In order to avoid all embarrassment, they tell us that it is not necessary to know what God is; that we must adore without knowing; that it is not permitted us to turn an eye of temerity upon His attributes.

But if we must adore a God without knowing Him, should we not be assured that He exists? Moreover, how be assured that He exists without having examined whether it is possible that the diverse qualities claimed for Him, meet in Him? In truth, to adore God is to adore nothing but fictions of one’s own brain, or rather, it is to adore nothing.

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I used to enjoy asking believers how they knew god’s love was infinite without an inductive proof. Clearly, god’s mercy is not since the almighty ran out of it in a rather spectacular fashion on certain occasions.

In terms of Argument Clinic, I’d say god is merely a label, for a set of a person’s opinions about what a god should be, if there was a god. In that sense, it doesn’t matter whether there is a god or not, people act as if their opinions were real. When you actually try to get believers to compare notes about what they think about god, this becomes readily apparent: most of them never examine their idea of the properties of this allegedly supremely important thing.

 

Comments

  1. polishsalami says

    Arguing with theists is difficult, mainly because their a priori assumptions make it difficult for them to grasp certain concepts.

    For example, when discussing the problem of infinite regress, I suggested that an infinite regress of physical states may be a problem for the human mind to grasp, but it may not be a problem for the Universe, which doesn’t care whether we understand things or not. I realized later that I was wasting my time with this argument, because they believed that their little minds were created to understand the Universe.

    They also were under the impression that this was a dogma that I was committed to, not something that I merely entertained as a possibility. Their world is a world comprised entirely of heavenly diktats.

  2. John Morales says

    Why godhood should perforce merit adoration is left as an open question.

    (Placation, sure)

  3. Pierce R. Butler says

    … asking believers how they knew god’s love was infinite without an inductive proof.

    How many of them said, “What’s an inductive?”?

  4. says

    Pierce R. Butler@#3:
    “What’s an inductive?”

    It’s what you get when you stick a bobby pin in each slot of an outlet, then put your tongue on them!

  5. says

    John Morales@#2:
    Why godhood should perforce merit adoration is left as an open question.

    Good point. I suppose the standard answer would be something like “for giving us this mixed bag of blessings and curses, and a lonely death.”

  6. says

    polishsalami@#1:
    For example, when discussing the problem of infinite regress, I suggested that an infinite regress of physical states may be a problem for the human mind to grasp, but it may not be a problem for the Universe, which doesn’t care whether we understand things or not. I realized later that I was wasting my time with this argument, because they believed that their little minds were created to understand the Universe.

    That’s a good example.

    Their world is a world comprised entirely of heavenly diktats.

    …. which require no examination. It’s a shortcut to a simpler life, I guess.

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