I'm debating a strong evangelical at work, and I've got him pinned to his strongest reason for belief: that there would be no purpose to his life without god. Of course I know that isn't true, but I want to respond to this thoughtfully. How would you respond to the statement there is no purpose without God?
And how exactly the existance of a God help him finding a purpose..was he born to pray andd go to church?? is that it??
I remember a quote by Einestein that says the only meaning and purpose of our life is to make those around us happy.
He said exactly " Strange is our situation here on Earth. Each of us comes for a short visit, not knowing why, yet sometimes seeming to divine a purpose. From the standpoint of daily life, however, there is one thing we do know: that man is here for the sake of other men - above all for those upon whose smiles and well-being our own happiness depends"
Wow, that's no debate card to pull at all. The mere statement is a surrender.
If he has arrived at that sad excuse for his belief, then he admits plainly that God is a creation, a solution --only to appease a question mankind has always had, and nothing more. His next step is to understand that life is full of unanswerable questions -- we're a dot on the map, he probably hasn't got a mind big enough to imagine how small we are, and how small our silly sentiments and ideas of gods are... I'd ask how he can possibly think belief is justifiable by the idea than mankind needs to, or possibly could know everything. We can't, and it's a total embarrassment, but common human "thing," to just make shit up as we go to calm and reassure everyone. We make our own purposes, we arrived by chance, by pure, unbiased, evidential evolution, no matter what legends we've written since our debut, and now that we are here, there are tons of purposes to undertake. Maybe he could start with the business of saving Earth, since our ancestors left us not only an irreversible situation of religion and all its burdens and fights, but a situation of having unknowingly started killing our own one true nonhuman parent, the planet.
Having some huge personal purpose... seems pretty damn petty to me, petty like a lot of their "God's" wishes and demands of us.
Permalink Reply by M on September 10, 2010 at 8:00pm
I am sad that man has no purpose in his life without god. Have you suggested he get a pet or try one of those nice online dating services? Perhaps he should strive for an altruistic pursuit, like volunteering somewhere?
I'm debating a strong evangelical at work, and I've got him pinned to his strongest reason for belief: that there would be no purpose to his life without god.
How does God relate to the purpose of this man's life? This is something people say about their children, a favorite organization, or some other entity which requires their active support. To say that a certain object is the purpose of one's life is to insinuate that this object is dependent upon this support. If the object is dependent upon the support of the purposeful individual, then the object is subordinate to the individual as the individual could withdraw their support at any time and cause the demise of the object. Therefore, when this man states that God is his "purpose," he is really saying that God is dependent upon him and therefore subordinate to him, both of which violate the conception of God as a supremely omnipotent being.
(I'm sure that logic is screwed up six ways to Sunday, but I'm enjoying a liquid dessert. Have mercy.)
Yeah, I can't really follow your logic here. For example, someone could say that "music" give their life purpose and meaning. But if that person died, it's not the end of music. Music doesn't need any single person's support.
Though, I guess in the broad sense music does need the support of musicians, and if all musicians ceased to exist then so would music. In the same way it could be said that this man's purpose in life is to pass the concept of god on to future generations, and keep it alive in the mind of the public. Without the faithful, the notion of god or gods vanishes, along with the concept of atheism. At this point we're all just people. So preventing this from happening could be his purpose in life. He considers himself a special child of god, when he's just a pawn being played by his church for their own finanical and political gain. How sad.
For example, someone could say that "music" give their life purpose and meaning. But if that person died, it's not the end of music. Music doesn't need any single person's support.
Good point; I was afraid that my first step was a bit fuzzy. Although I like where you are going with the latter thought about how, as a whole, music is dependent upon humanity for existence. In turn, if the purpose of the faithful's lives is God, then God as a whole is dependent upon the faithful for existence. Hmmm I can tell this is going to be twisting around in my skull while I'm trying to fall asleep, lol! :)
We know we have a purpose: to survive. If you're slowly starving to death and God has not sent you a sandwich -- despite your exemplary life and sincere prayers -- you're going to start looking for something to eat. Survival is nature's prime directive. Until your basic necessities are taken care of, you won't have time for God. If you die waiting for God to take care of you . . . you sorry life is testimony against God.
If you're lucky enough to live where your needs are easily satisfied, then you'll have plenty of time to elevate and praise God. If not, then survival is the all-consuming purpose of your life: God, if you think of him at all, becomes a supernatural, superstitious, excuse for your misery and failure.
Clearly, God is a luxury of idle minds. The purpose of life is biological: SURVIVE. Once you ensure your immediate (and genetic) survival, THEN you can think about lofty ideals and higher purpose -- but these are secondary. Survival is the prime directive.