“...universe extended indefinitely...the god of creation....”
Nice irony, Michael.
More than irony, Tom. Possible truth. Bible believers want to take you into their book and claim "god did it" but they end up saying their god has always existed. What a copout. Perhaps our universe has always existed even if in a state of flux at some periods. It is hard to imagine this, but if it is so then the universe is our "god."
No need of direction or purpose here and no need of intelligence. No need of a "being" that did anything.
This answers all questions but one: "But before that?"
Jerry, a present exists; a past and a future don’t exist and are dreamtimes.
So say some native peoples, unless some cultural anthropologists are lying.
Call them a now, a before and an after if you like.
An indefinitely extended universe, electrical by the way and without life, has no need for a past or a future.
Actually Tom - the present does not exist. Only the past and future. When you say something to me it takes time to reach my ears and for my afferent nerves to fire a signal. By the time I process it, it is in the future from when you said it - and vice versa.
The Australian Aborigines of whom you speak do think of time as circular though, rather than a straight river as perceived by western culture. Perhaps they are correct.
Michael, no need of direction, purpose, intelligence, or a “being”. Also no need of a god.
Did the early blue-green algae, cyanobacteria, or pond scum need a god?
The big or strong ate the small or weak. When did the need of a god arise?
It did arise, but the predators I met while doing politics seemed without conscience.
Trump and his kind seem to have none.
Ain’t curiosity something?
After writing of blue-green algae, cyanobacteria, or pond scum (which I understand are three names for the same stuff), I wondered if anyone who studies our roots ever hazarded a guess as to:
1) when evolution started, or
2) when any of evolution’s products became aware of awareness, or became aware of a past or a future.
I like that thought: No need for divine direction, no assigned purpose, no external intelligence, no "higher being" that informs one or protects one, and by extension, no judgment, no sin, and no need for redemption. What exists involves a spark of life that lights up at conception and fades away at death. Somewhere along that continuum one becomes conscious of oneself, of others, and one's surroundings.
I also like the idea of god is not a noun but a verb.
Oh! Oh! the notions of nature or nurture raise their heads. How is the quality of one's life impacted if one comes to life in a war-torn and brutal world, as opposed to a tranquil, peaceful, compassionate world? Does it matter in the in the long run if one exists in "a small, homogeneous, but insignificant portion of a universe extended indefinitely in both space and time?"
Biblical "sin" is simply missing the mark, which we all do. How does a god forgive me of that if my "sin" was a violent tantrum with you. If a god forgave me of this you would still be angry at me and it makes no sense the biblical way. A friend of mine once broke car windshields but said "god forgave him." You can only imagine the people with the broken windshields still being pissed and nobody replaced their windshields. Not my friend or any god. This "sin" was not dealt with. Jesus wasn't needed and he couldn't fix it anyway.
If the force people call "god" is not a being in the first place this type of nonsense is solved. It may be totally possible that our universe has always existed in one form or another and we are all products of our universe.
"missing the mark" Whose mark?
Perhaps, what we know as the universe in which we live plops in and out of existence as smoothly as the bubbles fluctuate on a motion map of the universe.
"Missing the mark" is a reference to the bullseye of a target. If you are shooting for that bullseye and miss it you have "missed the mark." This according to the writings of Paul in Greek. He used archery so others of the time could understand what he was saying. Romans 3:21 might just as well say "we have all missed the mark and come short of the glory of god."
This is a standard biblical definition of the modern word "sin."