Monday, February 4, 2008

Are some notions of God more absurd than others?

Let's say you were told that God had put man on earth so he could invite us up to heaven, after our deaths, and play endless games of Parcheesi with us. Most people, even believers, would find that notion absurd. But are there in fact any good reasons for rejecting such a conception of God? Could this not be God's inscrutable will? To the atheist it is not obviously absurd to postulate a totally arbitrary desire for God. We, as non-believers, do not know what it means for God to have a reason. God can be defended as unfathomable, yes, but then we are back to Parcheesi.

Can you think of a desire of God that would be even more absurd?


Crampton said...

He wishes an audience for which to perform interpretive dance, badly. Whether the afterlife counts as heaven or hell depends on one's sense of aesthetics.

Anonymous said...

Nope, you've nailed it!

Anonymous said...

If I were God, I would only allow cats passage into heaven.

Gary Karr said...

But aren't we back then to God? Could not a heavenly game of Parchesi be better than anything here on earth? Perhaps the question does not contemplate how different Parchesi might be in heaven, and with God.

Michael said...

God wouldn't play Parcheesi because of the dice.

Anonymous said...

I'd be afraid to beat God at Parcheesi.

Raif said...

My cat is very good at Parchesi. Strangely, he does not play chess well.

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Bill and Jessica said...

To create a rock that He cannot lift?

Sony said...

To see the many strange notions people develop about Him and His reasons.

Michael said...

Well, I suppose that if man were created by God, then the only possible route to learning anything about God (assuming that knowledge comes through sensory experiences, which in turn are best explained by science) would be to study man. Since humans have (arguably) some universalesque characteristics such as, say, ethics, one could use those characteristics as evidence of God's will. Thus, notions of God that contradict these universalesque human characteristics might be deemed more absurd. For example, a God that punishes and rewards arbitrarily is a more absurd notion than the standard view(s). A God that plays Parcheesi and not one that values love and truth would also be a more absurd notion.

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