Discussion of the Existence of God

Discussion of the Existence of God
Lots of people around the world are confused about how it all actually began. A lot of people suggest that there is an immortal God who created everything including man and animals. In this essay I am going to discuss the different ways people have tried to prove God?s existence and the arguments which imply that there is no such being as God. Different people have different views on the existence of God. People who believe in a God that is all powerful (Omni Potent), all loving (Omni benevolent) and all knowing (Omni Siant) are called Theists. They believe that God created the universe and everything around us and that he is everlasting. People who don?t believe that such a being as God exists are called Atheists. They refuse to accept that God is the source of our existence. Agnostic people are unsure of the existence of God.
They know that God?s existence can neither be proved nor disproved and therefore we should suspend judgement of His/Her existence. The biggest indication that God doesn?t exist is the Problem of Evil. There are two types of evil in the world: moral evil and natural evil. Moral evil is the kind of evil that we (humans) do ourselves, Incidents such as rape, murder and war. Natural evil is the kind that we have absolutely no control over whatsoever. Things like floods, earthquakes and fatal illnesses like cancer. The problem is, if God is all that the theists believe he is, why does evil exist in the world? If he cannot stop the evil, then he cannot be all powerful. If he doesn?t know about the evil, then he cannot be all knowing, and if he won?t stop the evil, then he is not all loving. And without one of these characteristics, God isn?t God. Therefore, God doesn?t exist. However, it is written in Genesis that the first man and woman were Adam and Eve, who lived in the Garden of Eden. In this garden God had also placed a special tree, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He left strict instructions that Adam and Eve must not eat any apples on this tree. Unfortunately, being told that the apples were forbidden only made them more tempting to both Adam and Eve and so they went and took a bite, bringing evil into the world, which, at the time was a paradise. So in the theists views, God did make the world perfect, but when given the choice, man chose evil over good, and now we are still paying for Adam and Eve?s mistakes. The problem with this argument is, why place the tree in the garden in the first place? If God couldn?t get rid of the tree, then he is not all powerful, and we are back to our original problem. Some people say that God placed the tree in the garden for a reason. He was giving humans the gift of freewill, the chance for us to choose whether we want to be good or evil. In order for us to make free choices, we have to have two different alternatives. A choice between good and good isn?t a real choice, which is why evil has to exist, so that we can be our own people, rather than God?s puppets. Natural evil is also essential in the world so that we can appreciate all the good things in our life. Losing a family member to an illness like cancer, makes you appreciate your other family members a lot more. That is why God has let natural evil into the world. There are also a number of Philosophical arguments that have been put forward to prove the existence of God. Saint Thomas Aquinas came up with the cosmological argument. He said that everything in the world is the effect of a previous cause, and these causes are effects of earlier causes, and so on in an infinite regress. He believed that this causation must have a starting point, that there must be an uncaused cause at the very beginning. God is the only being that is capable of being an uncaused cause. Therefore, God does exist. The problem with this argument is that Aquinas is contradicting himself throughout. By saying that everything must have a cause, he is saying that God, himself, must too have a cause. But this only pushes causation back and implies that there must be an infinite number of causes which cannot be. Therefore, this argument is illogical and paradoxical. Another philosopher who tried to prove the existence of God is William Paley. He used an analogy to try and prove the existence of God. Imagine you are taking a walk and you come across a watch for the very first time. You see the complexity of the design of this watch, and you realize that something so complicated must have had a designer, who took the time to think up such a design so that it serves it purpose, whatever that may be. The world is very orderly and regular, and its design is very complex. Therefore, the world must also have a designer, just as the watch did. And the only being powerful enough to create such a complex, orderly, and regular place, is God. For that reason, God does exist. The problem with this argument is that, if we really think about it, the world isn?t that orderly and regular. If the Universe was created by God as an orderly system, then all the natural disasters that occur in the world would not take place. Also, Paley suggested that order does not come up by chance but this is not true. If you had 6 dice and you wanted to roll 1000 sixes, you cannot be certain that it will never happen. Although it is highly unlikely, there is always the chance of it happening. An example of order coming about by chance would be the National Lottery, which people play every week and some, by chance, win! All these philosophical arguments are necessary because of the epistemic distance (knowledge gap) between us and God. Unlike everything else around us, God is not empirically testable. He cannot be seen, heard or touched. Therefore, we cannot prove his existence without all these philosophical arguments. I believe in the existence of God, and although I cannot prove it, I still like to have faith in the fact that there is an uncaused cause, a man/woman who created the universe and all its contents. I think that evil must exist in the world for there to be a balance. Having bad days will make you appreciate the good days, and so I think that God does know about evil, and not taking it away doesn?t make him cruel, nor does it take away the fact that he is all loving. I think that God knew what he was doing when he placed evil in the world. He was creating a balance. In conclusion, although there are many arguments both for and against the existence of God, we still cannot be absolutely certain of his existence/non existence because the epistemic distance is still present, and we will most probably never be able to bridge the gap.

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