I thought this was quite the interesting thought. I was gonna write this
as a response to one of a other discussions, but thought that I'd like
to get a bigger audience in on this one.

Many, if not all, good atheist believe that God simply does not exist. But I beg to ask the question: "If he doesn't exist and nothing in creation lends to the existence of God, why do we have so many thoughts about God? Are not our thoughts shaped by our environment? If our environment does not support the existence of a God, why do so many of us rule him into the equation? Is it that we are inclined to desire a god. Are we naturally inclined to think about one irrespective of our environment?"

The light bulb was created based on something that already existed, light! So I imagine Ben Franklin was inspired by the sun. Even the delusional has inspiration of thoughts based on things that exist. So why do we think about God if he doesn't even exist?

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Many, if not all, good atheist believe that God simply does not exist. But I beg to ask the question: "If he doesn't exist and nothing in creation lends to the existence of God, why do we have so many thoughts about God? Are not our thoughts shaped by our environment? If our environment does not support the existence of a God, why do so many of us rule him into the equation? Is it that we are inclined to desire a god. Are we naturally inclined to think about one irrespective of our environment?"


For the same reasons that the Greeks thought Zeus made the lightening. It was an explanation for something that our ancestors didn't understand. They may look at a spear and realize that someone made it. So with the limited mental ability (in comparison with modern humans) it made sense that 'someone' had to have made everything else and be responsible for all they didn't understand. Over time, these legends become part of the culture and take on a life of their own. So yes, I feel it is possible for one to create an idea for something that does not exist. Be it from a need for understanding (whether the explanation is logical or not) or from ones own imagination.

The light bulb was created based on something that already existed, light! So I imagine Ben Franklin was inspired by the sun.

I believe you meant Thomas Alva Edison as he is who invented electric light.
I believe you meant Thomas Alva Edison wow...thank you. I'm not as smart as I thought I guess. I knew that, but for some reason had Ben Franklin on the brain.

For the same reasons that the Greeks thought Zeus made the lightening. It was an explanation for something that our ancestors didn't understand. But why conjure up God? Why would any one concoct that and make it the driving force behind their entire life and society? I guess one could rule in the possibility that we are some how designed to recognize God. Or maybe, it is as the bible says, creation declares his glory. Or maybe both.

So yes, I feel it is possible for one to create an idea for something that does not exist. Be it from a need for understanding (whether the explanation is logical or not) or from ones own imagination. I might have been more inclined to believe you if you had mentioned SciFi authors of times past. Because many have dreamed some interesting things that is now realize. But on the other hand, their imagination, I would say, stem from hopes, dreams, fears of the world they already know, see, and/or feel. James, it would seem to me that you are arguing absolute objectivity. That we can separate ourselves from our experiences and come up with something totally original. And I doubt that very much. We believe we have limited objectivity but not full.

So with the limited mental ability (in comparison with modern humans) it made sense that 'someone' had to have made everything else and be responsible for all they didn't understand. I would say that this is a huge insult to the human race. I do believe that they had the same mental capacity as we do now. Progression of technology is the only thing that separates us. But their ingenuity was off da hook. Look at the Pyramids. If you are saying that we today have more brain force than Edison or Einstein, then there is no reason for us to base our understanding on the things they have done. We might as well throw out Darwin too, because we today have evolved beyond him. Sir you are gravely wrong on this point.
But why conjure up God? Why would any one concoct that and make it the driving force behind their entire life and society? I guess one could rule in the possibility that we are some how designed to recognize God. Or maybe, it is as the bible says, creation declares his glory. Or maybe both.

I explained this earlier in my post, but I'll repeat it again. Early man likely looked at all his tools, shelter, etc and realized that he made it. Yet he saw so much that he didn't make and that no one he knew had made. Things that he would have no way of making. So they must have been made by an even bigger/better 'maker' by his estimation. They didn't share our understanding of the natural world, thusly they drew a conclusion that made sense based on what they knew at the time.

As far as your reference to the God or the Bible... You do realize that as far as religions go, in the grand scheme of things Christianity is a fairly young religion (Islam is younger still). The first religions were much simpler and much different to what is practiced now. Religion has evolved through the years, both purposely as well as accidentally (like the telephone game).

it would seem to me that you are arguing absolute objectivity. That we can separate ourselves from our experiences and come up with something totally original. And I doubt that very much. We believe we have limited objectivity but not full.

Okay then... not sure how you drew that conclusion, but you're free to think as you wish. My point was that one can dream something up, but that ability does not determine that what it is automatically true or viable. My wife works with a Theist that argues that Atheists believe in God even though the claim not to. How does she explain that claim? She states that the fact that Atheists have a concept of God = God is real. As if there were no good, they wouldn't be able to even think of God. I can imagine a two inch tall polar bear that rides dragonflies from Spain to Brazil for his annual holiday, but my ability to image this does not make it so.

Yes, many things are drawn from an obvious inspiration. Gods inspiration? Us! We created gods in our image because of what early man observed and didn't understand.

I would say that this is a huge insult to the human race. I do believe that they had the same mental capacity as we do now. Progression of technology is the only thing that separates us. But their ingenuity was off da hook. Look at the Pyramids. If you are saying that we today have more brain force than Edison or Einstein, then there is no reason for us to base our understanding on the things they have done. We might as well throw out Darwin too, because we today have evolved beyond him. Sir you are gravely wrong on this point.

What I was referring to is understanding. Early man had a very limited knowledge of the natural world compared to what we know now. Now, if you want to compare our evolutionary ancestors with Homo Sapiens, it isn't a stretch to say that we are more developed. But of course you are not defining early man the same as I am. I would refer the early man as the earliest of our hunter gatherer ancestors, those who lived the kill or be killed life and lived in groups in the wilderness. But you are going back a very short while. The building of the pyramids to Edison, Einstein and Darwin. That is not early man. Edison was just yesterday and the Pyramids were a month or so ago on an evolutionary time scale. I hope that you now understand my point. In the future the generations to come may have a laugh at the fact that we're not capable of interstellar space flight or cold fusion. It's not that we're 'stupid' but that there are many things me just don't understand or know about yet.
I guess i'm asking you to explain: why not attribute trees to natural grow rather than some spiritual being. Because, without prior knowledge of a spiritual being, it is not likely to concoct such a story.
I disagree. Even today, we speak of things as if they have their own spirit or will, or judgement, even. There are millions of examples, but here are a few just to be clear.

* Looks like it wants to rain today.

* My batteries are dying.

* I want to kill my computer!

* Frack, I'm running out of gas and there are no gas stations! What did I do to deserve this?!

It's perfectly natural for humans to think of something first in terms of it having spirit or intention, especially if (say) it's another life form. (There was a study posted here I think that pointed to new brain scan evidence showing that brains even categorize automatically whether an object is living or not.) "Spirit" seems to be everywhere to humans, because the easiest way for us to understand and predict how objects or animals will act is by empathizing with them with our empathy circuits.

We can only understand others by projecting ourselves onto them. The source of all conjecture and philosophy is within each of us, or it came from our ancestors who wrote it down or produced stories about it. The way other philosophers have explained this recently, it's natural for us to assume "agency" in other things and life forms.
Who says we originally worshiped spirits of things, there are still worshipers of the items themselves. Look back in history, the further back you go the more "gods" there were and everything had a "spirit". You will have to replace the names in quotes with whatever name was appropriate at the time.

Your premise assumes that your god is the culmination of this, I would say in the end we will likely kill off your god and finally call it nature which is what almost every other god was in the past. The rest of course covering human wishes like love and war, people like feeling like they are being helped and in our eyes only other animals can do this.
I disagree. People have always and still do apply human traits to ideas and objects as Paul mentioned. Cartoon animals have human traits, but we know that they are not real and from where their inspiration was drawn. Donald Duck may walk upright, have hands, speak English and wear cloths, but we know he's only an inspired idea/character.

As I've said, early man made many tools that were useful to him. But who made the other things? He may see that a beaver can build a dam and a hutch, but it can't fashion an arrow head. The beaver eats vegetation which can't do this things, so the beaver is superior to the vegetation. He however could do what the beaver can do and much more, setting him still higher than the beaver. So if there exists things that he or people like himself can't make, it made sense that someone/something even better must have made it. Lets be clear the the Christian God with all his complexities would not have been the God dreamed up. It would have been something much simpler, and probably not called a God per-se but rather just a more advanced being. There have even been god concepts through the eons that were said to be powerful and have special abilities. But one could actually physically visit these beings. However many conveniently lived at the top of a mountain no one could get to or across the sea somewhere. The God concept you follow didn't come about until very far down the line and would be a foreign idea to these peoples. In fact, if you or I were to visit these people we would likely fit their idea of a 'god' pretty well.

But why not say a tree grows naturally? Lack of knowledge. They had no idea the leaves are green due to the chlorophyll. That it takes in carbon dioxide and let off oxygen. That didn't know that different trees and plants have different water, soil and sunlight needs for optimal growth. They didn't know why they grew, just that they did. Granted, over time these things started to become understood. But at first they weren't. Everything seemed to be cause and effect to them so they applied the same to what they didn't understand. The things they did understand was caused by someone or something. So a bigger someone or something had to be at work. A jump to conclusion due only to the fact they didn't have the same info, tools etc that we have at our disposal.
We as humans have already developed the concept of infinity. Nothing is truly infinite in nature, yet we somehow imagined it. Of course, when applied to a sentient being, it becomes riddled with self-contradictions and logical paradoxes.
can you really imagine it? Can you imagine something without a top or something that has no bottom or something that has no end or beginning? Can you truly imagine it? What about imagine it enough to draw a picture of what that might look like. As you said, we have a concept of it birthed out of our numeral system. It is the unreachable number. We have a concept, but it is unimaginable.
Apparantly it isn't unimaginable:

Actually this is a picture from an alchemical text dated to 1483 and was used to represent the mathematical concept of infinity - and what is eternity but an infinite stretch of time?
I've always held the terms as such:

Infinity is a numerical concept to describe any quantity without an end limit (or end limits).

Eternity is a concept of infinity that is specifically temporal.

My wording may be poor.

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