Whether you believe or don't believe there is evidence for a god, how would you define "a god" or "god's"...
I'm not asking what religious texts say. Although you may use that if it's part of your definition. I'm asking YOUR opinion. Not someone else's definition. Even if you do not believe, you must have some framework from which you've decided you don't believe in X....I'm asking your definition of X.
I'm actually ok with your definitions, even when they don't match mine. What I think is important is how I can still get an idea about how you're thinking. In some subjects, communication advances even while using ambiguous or slightly differently defined terms. (Well, at least for some of us!)
People have long tried to understand the concept of "infinity". It doesn't surprise me that they would attribute infinity to God, or God to infinity. I feel it helps allow us to express ourselves when we're able to use metaphors and imperfectly constructed concepts, at least until we can all use the same, precise language, if that's even possible. "Perfect communications" in everyday life is an ideal more than a reality, but worth pursuing, at least 90% of the time.
Speaking of perfection, that's another concept descriptive more of an invented God than of ourselves. We strive for it, with whatever energy feels most worthwhile, or absolutely necessary. It can become an obsession, but that's the way humankind has always worked well when it works... or even when it fails by taking the wrong alley or rabbit hole of perfection. (As a concept, omnipotence is an ideal, especially in some religions and cults.)
Almost forgot to add, this is must my opinion. ymmv!
Every God concept I have read, Abrahamic, Taoist, Buddhist, Hindi, come back to the first idea of infinity. God cannot fail because God always overcomes because God has infinite power/ability. Humans can become "like God" by understanding enough to overcome all obstacles in their own life. The most successful, most intelligent, most revered humans of our history always persevered and always found the answer to solve their problems.
God isn't real, but you are. Become God, my friends.
…because God has infinite power/ability.
Once again Andrew you are describing an attribute that you have adding to your concept of God. You are not defining God. You are presupposing such a thing as a God exists. A concept in your head is not infinite.
Infinity is only a mathematical concept. We exist in a Universe where Time had a beginning so it is too abstract a term to use. Even claiming a god exists outside of time is meaningless. You could possibly get away with the word “limitless” instead as a trait but that still leaves the omnipotence paradox. However you are still not defining what “God” is.
God cannot fail because God always overcomes….
Which God? Not the one that cannot lift a rock he created so heavy to lift? Which god that you don’t believe in are you referring to?
Sorry, Reg. I see we are talking past each other.
You ask which God. The term God is relative to each person providing a definition. The only attribute/power which all God figures share is the ability to overcome, no matter how difficult or impossible.
There is such a large array of definitions, notions and thoughts about the word God, that the only common attribute is the single ability to succeed, to overcome, to move forward. Call it limitless, call it infinity.
Precision language traps us, limits us to just the words we all understand and accept. Don't mistake my pointing finger for the thing I am pointing at.
Imagine the question was “How do you define Car” and not “How do you define God”.
If someone answered that “a car has energy” or “a car is red” or “a car allows for movement”, they would only be describing the attributes that they can assign to something they already seem to understand to exist. I would be able to understand the descriptive terms but I would still have no idea what they were talking about. I would still have no idea what a car was.
Which Car? I would not know what a Ford Car was any more that I would understand what a “Nissan Car” was.
There is such a large array of definitions, notions and thoughts about the word God….
Could you please offer me one from that large array that I can understand? I have yet to hear one that makes any logical sense. Infinity is a meaningless term as a definition.
"Could you please offer me one from that large array that I can understand?"
I would love to, but the God is not.
The car is, which makes it easy to figure out what a car is. The God is not, which makes it near impossible to figure out what the God is.
We can go through the exercise of defining Superman to the nth degree, but Superman is still not. One could spin tales about Superman which are amazing and intriguing and fascinating and fun, but Superman is still not.
I can't say God is red because I have no way to determine. I can't say God allows for movement because I have no way to determine.
No matter the definitions we provide for God, there is no objective example. So all I can do is describe attributes. If you do not accept those attributes, what else can I do? I can't argue from the objective perspective as there is none.
So all I can do is describe attributes.
How can you assign attributes to something that does not exist?
You did not say “if a god existed it would be infinite”. You said “God is infinite”. That is a description of something that exists.
Can't reply anymore :)
I figured "If God existed..." was assumed because it is the point of this discussion and we are atheists.
No, the point is “How do you define God”.
As an atheist, I define God as naught.
As an American raised in Christian culture, I define God as Jesus.
As a scientist, I define God as unknowable, unattainable without more evidence.
As a philosopher, I define God as a concept centered on the idea of perfection and infinity.
Does this satisfy the question, Reg?
It is a good attempt. Better than many I hear. Defining God (in the deist sense, I assume, rather than the Jesus Christian sense) as a concept based on another concept of perfection and infinity is better than saying “God is infinite”. Leaving it conceptual is the way to go.
Just my too sense...
Man created God in their image. They made Him eternal because they cannot fathom any end of time, not even their own; so there must also be a heaven.
The fantasy of free will is invented too, but they'll say God gave it to them, and that's how we can realize "our dreams"... even though dreams, plans, goals, and predictions are just mental productions of deterministic neuro-circuitry.
Humans are also distinct from other animals because we're bipedal predators, have uber dexterity with our hands, invent behavioral and cultural pathologies that Mother Nature couldn't genetically plan ahead for, and... blah blah the point is anyone can define God any way they want to (and they have).
It depends on my mood and how respectful I feel towards others' claims.