The Obvious Gods
How obvious is it that there exists a god in his heaven? Is it as obvious as religious people want to demonstrate it to be, but consistently fail without invoking faith? If god has spoken, why is the world not convinced?
Many people look at the world and see nothing other than the hand of God in everything, be it good or evil. In the good, they see the goodness and love of god towards his favorite creations. In the evil they see the will of god since he knows what is best and we must have faith that he knows best. God is forgiven for the most heinous atrocities without the blink of an eye. That’s how obvious it is that God is in charge of everything around us. Yes, everything. Trains, cars, planes, birds, bees, storms, disasters, death, birth, creation, destruction, good, bad, evil, nasty, tasty, delicious, sexy, horrible, detrimental, …etc. God is everywhere, in the ray of sunshine, in the fresh summer breeze, in the dark of night, in the drop of rain. God is everywhere, because god is everything. He is inside us. He lives within us, and we are within him, and we are all part of each other. God is obvious.
The fact that God is hardwired into our brains is discussed in detail elsewhere. Go look it up.
I do not really care how obvious God is. I care about the evidence for this obvious state of existence. If the evidence does not support the statement that God is everywhere, then I doubt if god is anywhere. And if more evidence shows that god is not everywhere and is not obvious, then I will conclude, reliably, that god is nowhere. Those who believe owe it to the world to prove the existence of their god or gods. If a significant portion of our species insists on discriminating, hating, killing and slowing scientific progress in the name of their gods, then we owe it to ourselves to at least investigate if these gods are really true or not.
Believers are highly skeptical people, with a keen sense of wit and intelligence. But this only applies to skepticism towards other gods and other religions. Every other religion will be scrutinized and judged to be wrong, evil or at the least, misled. However, their own religions are exempted from any intellectual scrutiny and investigation. For some reason, their faith in the pious truth of their own religions and the existence of their own god is beyond investigation. It just is true. No doubt.
But how is it that the same god that millions of christians believe in is not such an obvious god to the millions of other people who believe in a different god, and vice versa? Why is the one true god not obvious to everyone who wants to, or needs to, have a god in their lives to assist and guide them and take care of them? Surely, the Hebrew God is not obvious to the adherents of Islam, and neither is Allah an obvious God to Christians or Jews. In fact, it seems to me that there are millions of people who agree with me that none of these gods are as obvious as their followers would like us to believe. The Muslims agree with me that the Hebrew God is not obvious at all. All I need to do is read the Koran and have faith in Allah! The Christians agree with me that Allah is certainly not an obvious God, and I simply need to read the bible to come to that conclusion. Oh, and I must have faith that their god is the only true god. The Jews, who believe in the same God as the Christians, do not believe that Jesus is such an obvious divinity, and in this the Muslims agree with the Jews, and with me! It’s amazing how much agreement one finds when one looks at things a little closer.
Any god that is obvious should be recognizable as a god, even to those who choose not to believe in him. No rational person would deny the obvious. If a god appears and does some magic stuff that can obviously only be done by a god, then that god would obviously be a god, and chances are that he would obviously be “the” one and only god. How many can there be? And if there are many others, how obvious are they? Can they do the same magic tricks as the one who landed in Main Street last Sunday on a chariot of fire, and turned city hall into a giant marshmallow, just to show goodwill and love? This guy will obviously be the first choice to be the one and only obvious god. But if there are other lesser gods who can do other lesser magic tricks, then they will obviously be gods as well, albeit less amazing.
And then there are the scientists. Those who toil day and night to create the things that make our lives comfortable, or who develop the technologies with which we are going to do God’s work, which will be to kill the infidels and non-believers. These are the clever people amongst us, most are well educated, and yet only a very small and almost insignificant group of them sees anything obvious in any of the gods being bandied around by religious people. The great majority of them think that there is nothing obvious about any of these gods, and they deny the existence of any of them. If an obvious God created everything, then these people should be the first to believe in this god, for they are the people looking for the signs and patterns of creation. They develop the technologies to allow us to look back into time, to the first moment of creation, and despite all of their efforts, searching the far reaches of the universe with the most powerful telescopes ever imagined; they still find nothing that obviously indicates the existence of an obvious God. Nothing.
You may delude yourself and believe that the background radiation found to be the echoes of the big bang is in fact the murmurings of an obvious god, but the science does not support that. The only thing that supports that is your faith, and we deal with faith in the next chapter. Beyond that, there is nothing that you can present to show how obvious your god is.
The only obvious thing is the delusion.
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