Everything is designed by god(s), did you say?

Sreeni: Prof. Kumar, I have been having a lot of debates in our book club meetings with many religious people. They claim that the universe is a special creation designed by a supreme creator. However, I can’t understand how a sane person can persuade himself that beneficent and omnipotent gods would have created such a vast number of animals in our planet with the specific purpose of spending their entire life tormenting and devouring other animals?
 
How could beneficent and omnipotent gods have designed ticks, lice, fleas, bedbugs and mosquitoes with the specific intention of feeding themselves from the living bodies of humans and animals? How can a sane person persuade himself that benevolent god(s) would have designed a cat with the specific purpose of wounding a mouse with its teeth and playing with the bleeding body until it slowly dies in pain and terror?
 
They claim that the universe makes sense only if God exists. They believe that only a god could have created the wonder of the planets orbiting the sun, but they fail to explain how an omnipotent and infinitely good creator can send meteors, asteroids and comets crashing into planets.
 
Me: I am with you in everything you said. Also they provide no explanation about how an omnipotent and infinitely good god can allow such harmful sickness as a five-pound tumour on a small girl. However her parents are so delusive that they believe God helped the surgeons' hands to remove it to save her life.
 
This is incontrovertible evidence that the brain of a religious person does not have the capacity to judge properly the facts of reality. They give God credit for the removal, but don’t blame him for the tumour. They even argue, in Abrahamic religions, that God had a fine and noble purpose in causing the suffering or in the case of Hinduism, they attribute it to 'Prarabdha Karma'.
 
Sreeni: I suppose such a type of rationalization is based on a distorted perception of reality. How can an omnipotent and infinitely good god allow the birth of conjoined twins and other freaks of nature, as well as myriad genetic birth defects, which are unworthy of benevolent design? A birth defect is an abnormal development of the fetus resulting in malformation, growth retardation, functional disorders and death. Birth defects are the leading cause of infant mortality.
 
The religious offer the argument from design as one of the proofs for the existence of God. This argument infers from the order and beauty that we perceive from the universe that there is an intelligent designer and creator of the universe. However, the perception of order and beauty is an inherent characteristic of the way that we perceive, and not a part of the external reality. The argument assumes that the universe was designed in order to prove that it is the work of a designer.
 
Me: You are right. This argument suppresses evidence. It does not explain why such a benevolent and almighty god allows many babies to be born without brains. It does not explain why so many good people are suffering monstrous tortures such as cancer. It does not explain why so many evil people are relaxing in the beach and enjoying power and reputation. It does not explain why earthquakes are shaking the planet. It does not explain why hurricanes and tornadoes kill thousands of lives and destroy everything on their way.
 
Sreeni: The one thing which makes me roll with laughter is when the defenders of the design delusion argue that these awful events seem abominable to us because we are ignorant of God’s plan and vision, and we can never know how beneficent these atrocious disasters really are.
 
Me: Phew! One can never win over these morons.

 

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Comment by Monte Pirlo on October 31, 2017 at 1:45am

I believe that religion is created by humans and not god. if the gods had been from different religion, why were Christ and mohammed born as Jew. If they can defy their religion in search of a new religion that was more intended to help humans out, why can't we? their motive was to help the homeless, feed the hungry, share happiness. if your religion stops you from helping out a person, its better to keep the shitty religion out of wits.

god 's existence is something i don't keep my faith in. the bringing up of the rest of the world is like- trust in god blindly, he will do the best for you. If it were so, ISIS would not have succeeded in massive killings, children included.

Call me Atheist. I am accepting it with Pride.

Comment by Michael Penn on October 28, 2017 at 7:36pm

Everybody wants to know god's plan. Back in my day a big study book I had was "God's Plan For Man" by Finis Jennings Dake. The title alone says plenty. When you start this far ahead common sense says that so much is assumed.First, we have assumed that their is a god. Then we have to understand things by knowing his plan. What is this plan? Where is this god?

It's all like the great Kalam argument that serves only one purpose. We have to have a cause and a beginning to be able to insert our god who reportedly had no cause and no beginning. So much for learned religious reasoning.

It's OK to admit that we do not know. As time goes on we are learning more all the time.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 25, 2017 at 12:20pm

Kumar, perhaps that's the main reason that all the reason and evidence against mormonism I've given my family has had no effect (affect?) so far.

Perhaps I've been able to break-out of that strong brainwashing because I've always loved science more than most, and probably been a logical thinker more than most.

Comment by V.N.K.Kumar on October 25, 2017 at 12:17pm

@Grinning Cat: I liked your last sentence. Thanks.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 25, 2017 at 12:16pm

Cat, it just hit me that your statement "God's plan" is indistinguishable from no god and no plan." seems to be a good argument against the mormon apologetic as well.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 25, 2017 at 12:13pm

Grinning Cat, mormonism claims that we have to know suffering to appreciate non-suffering.  I've not had a good answer to that.  What Kumar posted about good people suffering and bad people not is one good argument I think.  Are there any more?  Anyone else feel free to give your thoughts as well.

Comment by V.N.K.Kumar on October 25, 2017 at 12:09pm

@Vangelis: You are spot on, my friend. You cannot reason someone out of their indoctrinated beliefs which they were never reasoned into. Their beliefs were hardwired into their neuronic circuits through being brainwashed by their elders in the formative & impressionable phases of their lives.

Comment by Grinning Cat on October 25, 2017 at 12:04pm

As I've written before, "God's plan" is indistinguishable from no god and no plan.

And appealing to a hypothetical afterlife where everything will be made right doesn't help. Even if there were reason to believe in such a thing, evil and suffering and natural disasters and medical horrors and death are real, and it would be the height of immorality for a god to create or allow such gratuitous suffering.

A powerful creator god could have created a world in which his "beloved" human beings have free choice without evil and suffering and death (just like the god has for himself).

Of course, a much more parsimonious explanation is simply that there are no gods (other than as ideas and characters in our heads), and that shit happens.

Comment by Idaho Spud on October 25, 2017 at 10:05am

Thanks for pointing-out how evil a god would have to be to create and allow such atrocities.  I've been meaning to ask questions such as these of my religious family members.  You gave me a few more.

Comment by Vangelis on October 25, 2017 at 5:06am

Ah, the creator-god being raises his ugly head once again. Indeed, the god of the gaps has shrunk to a few little creations, like the universe and of course life itself. Something that science cannot explain... or can it?

Lawrence Krauss does a pretty good job of explaining how a universe can be created from nothing thereby negating the necessity of a creator-being.

Craig Ventor created synthtic life in a lab and looking at creating ever more complex life as his research continues.

So all these creation event gaps that god was supposedly once responsible for are closing leaving nothing for a god to do. I feel rather sorry for the poor chap - he must be getting very bored!

But no matter how much evidence you provide to theists, they will never give up their delusions.

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