How Should We Define God?

30 January 2006

Many nonbelievers have made the claim that “God” is an incoherent concept that is never really defined. Unfortunately, it is true that theists often have difficulty ascribing characteristics to God. Thus, in this article I will describe the attributes that, I believe, make God.

First, I must mention an important distinction to make about the definition of God. There are, in my mind, two different ways to define Him. The first way is a vague and nonspecific definition. This definition only seeks to understand what necessary characteristics or attributes God displays. This I will refer to as the “minimalist” definition. The second way to define God is according to a specific religion. For example, a Hinduist may mention all the characteristics of the God in which they believe. Since I am a Christian, I will seek to mention the characteristics of the Christian God.

What is the “minimalist” definition?

I believe God is an entity that is above and beyond the universe. This means that God is not subject to the laws of the universe. In addition, He created the universe and the physical laws that govern it. He has existed eternally, which is why He had no cause for His existence. Moreover, God is able to make decisions. He is not merely a robot, but instead has the ability to decide to do certain things.

This definition admittedly is very vague, but that is why I refer to it as the minimalist definition.

What is the Christian definition?

I believe that the Christian God has all of the aforementioned characteristics, as well as many others. Among these are omnibenevolence (all-loving), omniscience (all-knowing), immutability (unchanging), and interest in human beings. He is also omnipotent (all-powerful). He is perfectly just, and He is the basis for all morality. In fact, He created a moral code, which is imbedded within all humans. He is three persons in one God (known as the Trinity), consisting of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The Son, Jesus Christ, sacrificed himself in order to allow us to live in heaven for eternity should we place our faith in Him.

What are the uses of these definitions?

Everybody may vary on what they believe defines God. However, it is important that everybody has at least some idea of what they believe defines Him. The minimalist definition is most important when arguing for the existence of God (see Cosmological Argument and Teleological Argument). The Christian definition is most important to know for inquiring nonbelievers and for one’s own personal convictions.

Proving God

It is interesting to note that nontheists will often criticize theistic arguments for failing to show that God is omnipotent, omniscient, omni-benevolent, and so on. As I point out, I think that most theistic arguments should only be concerned with establishing the existence of God as described by the minimalist definition. However, I feel that the expectations are impossibly high, for I think that it is impossible for us to really know that God is omnipotent, for example, on the basis of naturalistic evidence alone. To see this, imagine that you asked God to demonstrate that He is all-powerful. You may ask Him to perform some amazing act, such as instantaneously creating a million universes. However, such a demonstration would not prove omnipotence, for you could then ask Him to simultaneously create a million and one universes. This process could be repeated indefinitely- no matter how many universes you asked God to make, you could always ask for Him to make one more. Thus, it is impossible, strictly speaking, for omnipotence to be demonstrated. The same holds true for omniscience, omni-benevolence, and so forth.

It follows that the expectation that one “prove” that God is omnipotent is absurd. Nevertheless, belief that God really does possess such qualities can still be rationally maintained in a couple of ways. First of all, personal experience (see here) could testify to God’s perfection. Secondly, Richard Swinburne has argued that the hypothesis that God is all-powerful is simpler than the hypothesis that He is somewhat powerful. 1 Therefore, all things being equal, we should prefer the hypothesis that God is perfect.


NOTES:

1. Swinburne, Richard. The Existence of God. (New York: Oxford) 1991.


Recommended Further Reading

Theodore M. Drange, Incompatible-Properties Arguments: A Survey, http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/theodore_drange/incompatible.html This article discusses most of the various arguments used by atheists which attempt to show that the concept of God is incoherent. Read this article first, and then read the following two refutations in order to see the Christian responses to such arguments.

Joseph A. Sabella, The Case for a Coherent God, http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/joseph_sabella/coherent_god.html

Ralph C. Wagenet, The Coherence of God: A Response to Theodore M. Drange, http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ralph_wagenet/response_to_drange.html






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  1. god = F(x) = 1/x Where x>0 and x is the advances in science


    Valentin Hernandez    Nov 4, 02:43 PM    #
  2. Listen, if you want to critique the argument use something coherent. However, I do wonder about this one. Certainly the expectation of proof is absurd, but without proof, then the qualities of God are accepted on blind faith. I don’t have a problem with that except for this site’s stated purpose…


    — Tyflec Kyger    Nov 28, 10:08 PM    #
  3. Tyflec,

    I don’t think you need either “proof” or “blind faith.” Rather, one can have good, yet not perfect, evidence favoring one’s view. For example, Swinburne’s argument that omnipotence is simpler than a large, but arbitrary amount of power lends credibility to the idea that God is omnipotent and not merely very powerful. This is not a knock-down, deductive case, but it does provide good evidence for the traditional Christian perspective.


    Kyle Deming    Nov 29, 05:11 AM    #
  4. a good medieval definition of God is: God is that being which there can be nothing greater than. 9th century.


    Coolvan    Dec 4, 08:01 PM    #
  5. “he created a moral code, which is imbedded within all humans”. Then why did He so persistently and consistently pursue teaching the Jews about God? It was not imbedded, he selected the Jewish people and proceeded to teach and guide and punish over a great many years and finally sent His Son, Jesus, The Christ, with a simpler way/path to follow and they still do not get it. I believe the Bible proves itself admirably, however do strongly suggest guidance from Christ’s Church, i.e. Church of Christ. Thank you for the opportunity to comment. Will read further. God Bless you and your efforts.


    dorothy    Jan 16, 03:38 PM    #
  6. Cute function, Valentin.


    — Jared    Feb 5, 06:50 AM    #
  7. I think the problem with the argument in the original post is that it doesn’t adress the logical impossibilities resulting from the minimalist definition that the author seems to prefer. In the minimalist definition, the author states, “God is above and beyond the universe”. How then does he interact with it? What does it mean to be “beyond the universe”, anyway? I think most people will have a great deal of trouble understanding what that means, and it certainly makes God inscrutable. If that is the best definition of God that we can give, it is indeed an empty concept. It isn’t until we assign some understandable characteristics to the concept that the word God becomes meaningful. Yet whenever we introduce these concepts (such as “omnipotent”, “omnibenevolent”, or “omniscient”) we also introduce logical contradictions that further remove the concept from the realm of our understanding. What does it mean to say that God is both omnipotent and omnibenevolent? Such ideas fail to explain calamities such as Hurricane Katrina and also fail to improve our understanding of what the term “God” represents. What does it mean to say that God is all-knowing? Does it mean he knows how to swim? Such questions don’t make sense, but are the expected logical result of ascribing “infinite” qualities to God. If this is the best that 2000 years of theology can do, then I think christianity is (and deserves to be) a dying belief system.


    Terry    Feb 5, 05:28 PM    #
  8. Terry,

    The arguments about the incompatibility of God’s attributes are well answered, I think, by the linked articles. Nevertheless, I will soon try to expand on this article to thoroughly address the claims that you make in your comment.

    Sincerely,

    Kyle.


    Kyle Deming    Mar 10, 10:03 PM    #
  9. The quest to define God seems unimportant to me. I enjoy it when intellectuals spend so much time and effort defining or undefining God. I have decided that if I can define God, then I need to find a bigger one. I just know that it’s not me.


    — Rick    Mar 17, 05:24 PM    #
  10. Drange’s arguments are weak in general, save the Problem of Evil, which others have argued better. However, neither of the posted rebuttals deals with the transcendence problem. One uses multi-dimensional handwaving unconvincingly (but at least posits a decent, if underdeveloped, idea), and the other shrugs it off altogether as being one of those incomprehensible mysteries of the universe.

    The idea of God as a being outside of time is more reasonable than that of a God “outside of everything,” but the term remains maddeningly vague.


    Paul    Apr 21, 09:30 AM    #
  11. GOD is everything in ONE.

    Anything and everything are inter-related to each other. Therefore we have to think twice, before acting.


    Warno Kartokromo    Apr 26, 06:29 PM    #
  12. To me the central question in defining God must be: what would be evidence of that God be? A very relevant corollary for the atheist is then: does your world view even allow for evidence to exist?

    In most cases, I find atheists are arguing an axiomatic position:

    1. To be proof of God there must be some REAL phenomenon.

    2. To be REAL, a phenomenon must be completely observable, and testable – in short to be REAL it must be fully describable by science.

    3. If it’s completely describable by science, then you don’t need a God to explain it.

    Thus, the evidence you demand is by it’s own definition not capable of being evidence. Tidy, but proves nothing.


    Vern    Jun 19, 06:34 PM    #
  13. There are a few flaws I think with your definition of God. First, you posit that God is beyond the universe. What is the universe? Matter, time, and space. Is God beyond time and space? If God is not in time, then God is static and does, thinks, and feels nothing, for all of these things require a sequence of cause and effect in time. If God is beyond space, then how can he exist at all? All matter is something, and all somethings fill the void of space. If there is no void, then how can God exist? If God exists in a time and space that transcends our own, then where did that time and space come from?

    Moreover, why would an all loving God create hell in the first place? The Christian God is not universalist, and there are many passages in the Bible that refer to eternal, irrevocable torment of sinners and the lost (see Arthur W Pink’s article on hell). Why would an all loving God do that? That seems like sadism, not love. And if he is all powerful and all loving, then why not just remove all of our sins and take us all to heaven, no matter what we believe or who we are?

    Moreover, as the Bible says, those who do not believe in Christ will be condemned. In other words, man is fully accountable for his trespasses against God, much in the say that man is fully accountable in his trespasses against his neighbors or his Government. The difference is that we know our neighbors exist, and we know our Government exists to punish us. But we do not know that God exists. In this sense, God than demands full accountability of Man’s actions without full certainty that even exists. Moreover, if God is all knowing, then he must recognize the existential situation man finds himself in. Man has been thrust into this world without his free will. I did not ask to be born, you did not ask to be born into this world. God knows that we did not have the choice of not entering the world, so to only be fair, it seems that God would then give us the option of leaving this world without divine intercession in the matter. And God, being all knowing, knows there is no proof of his existence, and yet he feels it fair to judge us anyways. A sinner walks before God on the day of judgment and God asks why the sinner did not believe in him, on what grounds can God possibly condemn the sinner for his unbelief, when there is not proof of God’s existence? If the sinner tells God that it is unfair that he should have had to play this game of life, what will God say? “Too bad, I like messing with innocent people”?

    In the beginning, God had a choice. To create a universe full of sentient beings and subject a number of them to eternal torture and a few of them to everlasting bliss on whether or not they believed certain unprovable propositions. Or, God could have spared the immense suffering his creation would have caused up on the people and done nothing. Which one would have been more loving?


    — Kique    Jul 16, 02:25 PM    #
  14. Vern:

    Some may ask for evidence so defined, but “observable and testable” does not actually mean “fully describable by science.” We may be able to observe and test something without being able to describe it.

    Let us suppose that the apostle Thomas really did feel it necessary to touch Christ’s wounds to be assured of a Resurrection. In that case, he not only observed evidence of the divine, but performed a quick test. This does not mean that he would have considered the whole thing describable by science!

    The claim that atheists demand impossible evidence, or would deny any evidence they were presented with, is easy to make. Atheists are so frequently presented with terrible arguments and poor evidence that they may well seem permanently closed-minded. But the atheist claim is not that “the evidence for God is unscientific, and therefore negligible.” It’s that “the evidence offered is painfully unconvincing, given the massive claims made.”


    Paul    Aug 2, 07:24 AM    #
    • What’s wrong with MSG in the Western diet? **
  15. Let an old atheist play God’s advocate for a while.

    Almost from the beginning, the Jesus myth received many divergent underpinnings. Clearly, the orthodox christological story given by Paul posits a transcendental world savior in the mid-late 1st century CE.

    It’s a long way from Paul of Tarsus to Paul Tillich. Protecting central Xian claims from refutation is a 2,000 year old game. Let’s get away from that as much as possible.

    Let’s consider the presence of MSG in the Western theological diet.

    Not the stuff that gives you headaches from Chinese restaurant take-out. No, I mean the Minimum Standard God. Philosophers can indulge themselves forever, and evolutionary biologists can await life’s arising from some self-organizing system. But, the U.S. Federal Courts have had to bring some reasonable specificity to the meaning of the word, ‘God.’

    And, the winner (surprise!) is one deistic divinity—what I call the Minimum Standard God within the Western Tradition, “the MSG” for short.

    Courts have consistently held that ‘God’ as in the notorious “In God We Trust” refers to a one-size-fits-all unique deistic divinity—creator, sustainer of the universe consistent with Western tradition. “He” is the MSG.

    I expect U.S. courts to trot out this precedent for beating back an atheist’s challenge to the ‘under God’ clause in the pledge of allegiance—the MSG is today invoked before each Supreme Court session and each House of Congress opens with a prayer—recently by a Hindu who was booed from the Gallery by radical xian know-nothings.

    The courts will argue that the concept of the MSG does not violate the establishment clause. Traditionally, most Westerners averred that the MSG would answer their basic notion of God. Whether such a being exists is irrelevant; the MSG concept is non-sectarian. No one is legally obligated to identify the MSG with that moral monster embraced by the late (unlamented) “Rev.” Falwell. (Or, the merely Xian “God” of C.S. Lewis. Or, “God” as Paul Tillich’s “ultimate concern.”)

    Unfortunately, tradition also dictates at least that the MSG exists. Tradition leaves open any god hypothesis, except of course denying the existence of a unique god, however bland. (That is however “logically weak” or “pared down” the concept.)

    Still remaining outside the sheepfold, quite literally: secular humanists, Buddhists, Chinese ancestor worshipers, Shintoists, Hindus, Vedantists, Wiccans, assorted polytheists, devil worshipers . . . those few too principled to be hypocrites . . . and legions of the wholly indifferent.

    The first amendment actually guarantees freedom of conscience to each of them. Thus, each person is free to deny even the MSG of blessed tradition and to seek the foundations of morality in philosophy rather than theology, for example.

    The Western tradition is also androcentric and paternalistic. That’s why the MSG gets a masculine gender (“He”), certainly not “She”, instead of the correct “It.” The Western MSG presupposes too much.

    Problems with the MSG: existence, personhood, gender, misogyny.

    Some xians can perhaps jettison their “God’s” misogyny and masculinity as culturally limited metaphor, but it’s hard to see how personhood could be eliminated as Hinduism has done with the Absolute (Brahman).

    In general xianity has to grapple with how much of its so-called sacred text can be characterized as time-bound metaphor, myth-managed history, and dispensed with.

    As a non-theist, perhaps anti-theist would be better, I claim my right under the 1st Amendment to the Constitution to freedom of conscience. I choose not only to deny any god anywhere, any time, but also to defy and decry all god-mongers as well.

    Besides, the real “religious” issues in the U.S. are not religious in nature.

    The pressing issues leading to social control by organized xofascists have nothing to do with religion per se, but the literalist interpretation of the xian religion used as a front for totalitarian ideologues.

    Undermining the Constitution, trashing biological science, and perverting education to suit ideologies of cultural domination by right-wing politico-xians are what we have too much of in America.

    What’s “God” got to do with all that. Nothing.

    1st-Circle

    copyright asserted 2007


    1st-Circle    Aug 15, 01:47 PM    #
  16. I have the perfect question to ask to prove is omipotence “Hey God, would you please prove you are omnipotent in a way I understand?” An omnipotent God could do that.


    Steve    Aug 17, 07:26 AM    #
  17. The problem with trying to define God in this pseudo-rationalist approach is that it makes no sense in talking about the God and father of Jesus Christ. Jesus didn’t give doctrinal statements about God, Jesus simply understood what God was about.

    If you want to define God, then you can only do so once you deal with the decisive Revelation of God in Jesus Christ, (to follow Barthian theology). If you want to know who God is, then God is the one who wonders Palestine as an itinerate Jewish peasant proclaiming, and living, a drastic change in the world.

    In saying this, what attributes can we give to God through the person Jesus Christ? Justice, Peace and Righteousness. And not justice in the sense that God will punish people who refuse to accept God’s existence, but justice in the sense that God cries out with the voice of the destitute, oppressed and marginalized. God is about divine justice invading the world through the kingdom of God.

    In saying all this, what is the nature of God? Following Tillich’s theological method, God should not be seen as a being, defining God that way simply reduces God. God is BEING itself.

    Cheers, Allan.


    Allan    Sep 20, 06:14 AM    #
  18. You know you don’t need proof of everything to believe in something. God is perfectly capable of proving anything we want Him to prove, He can make anything happen, He can answer all our prayers. Does He? No. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t exist. There is a reason why he doesn’t answer all our prayers and give us everything we want. Because he knows what’s best for us.

    We are put on this Earth to serve Him first and foremost. We’re not here to get everything we’ve ever wanted and live the most perfect life with the help of God. We are put on this earth as visitors, to serve and worship God until it is time for us to leave this place and live for eternity with Him.

    I know it’s old—but even though you can’t see the wind, you still know it exists. Same with love. Same with God. You don’t need to necessarily see something in order for it to exist. God is everywhere around us, even when we feel like He’s not. He does it on purpose sometimes too. He never leaves us, but He sometimes steps back to see how we handle things on our own. It’s a test to determine how well we handle things on our own and how our faith brings us back to Him.

    If people want to waste their time on Earth trying to find some physical hard evidence that God exists, they won’t find it….and their time will truly be a WASTE. There comes a time when you need to open up your hearts and your minds. Let go of all your assumptions and previous opinions about God and consider accepting Him. You don’t have to believe. God won’t go away if Christianity seems to become a “dying religion.” He’ll always be there with open arms when a non-believer accepts Him as their Lord and Savior.

    We’re all entitled to believe what we want to. God knows that. He just wants you to have an open heart and an open mind!

    :)


    — Katelyn    Nov 30, 02:33 PM    #
  19. Everyone has their own opinion about who God is. Now I believe in Him, and I believe in His all-knowing, all-powerfulness. Now you ask why He cannot prevent disasters. Well, just as there is a God, there is also an anti-God. He is known by many as Satan, or the Devil. Just as God is the creator of all things good, Satan is the father of all things evil. And God allows it to be so. Why? Because if God eliminated Satan, he’d eliminate evil. And if he eliminated evil, he eliminates the one thing that makes us human, free will. If the option for evil was destroyed, then we would not have any choices to make and we would be stuck on on parallel path that everyone travels down. But since He allows us to have freewill, He must present us with both options, good and evil. And He must allow us the option to choose whatsoever path we choose, else we lose our freedom of choice that He strove to give us.


    — Jonathan    Dec 12, 05:29 PM    #
  20. Enjoyable reading. Thanx


    dan    Dec 31, 03:14 PM    #
  21. I think it’s acceptable and possible for God to show his omnipotence. If a being is capable of everything, logically it would also be capable of constructing a way of proving this capability. Simply put, if God can do anything, he can also prove (logically and understandable to any being) it, else he wouldn’t be omnipotent. (And personally I doubt one has to be omnipotent to be to be able to logically prove omnipotence as a capability).


    joopjoperson    Jan 10, 03:43 AM    #
  22. Here is an undeniable explanation of GOD. Mathematically GOD is number 0. This is because nothing represents the power of the negative and positive to its extreme added together. That is nothing is only created when you have true 0. This universe has been unbalanced and thus exists. GOD made the whole universe out of nothing can now be taken literaly. Out of nothing you have this universe for some negative energy has been removed from true 0 to cause this universe to exist.


    Tinu    Jan 16, 06:42 PM    #
  23. I don’t need to add anything here. As is usually the case, the non-theists keep pointing out the same logical inconsistencies and contradictory evidence that confute an all-powerful dictator of time and space and the theists respond with the same non-sensical, unsupported assertions (e.g. “God is BEING itself”) and convoluted re-definitions of god (minimalist vs. Christian) to fit the argument to the pre-supposed conclusion. Skeptical Christian? Hardly!


    Ben Larson    Feb 24, 12:22 PM    #
  24. I deduce the existence of God from the arguments of atheists as to his non-existence. No one feels a need to mock what doesn’t exist.


    malcolm    Mar 6, 01:10 PM    #
  25. The existence of God must be accepted by faith when it comes to brass tax. You may present as much “evidence” as you’d like to a person, but the hard and fast truth is that many who argue against God would deny him if they witnessed him with their own eyes. Apologetics and its practitioners have been striving to prove God’s existence and Jesus’ deity since the first century AD. The point is that God, while he give abundant evidence for those who would believe it, has chosen to make himself connected with faith and not with human reason. We see that in the opening two chapters of First Corinthians. God is not bound by our logic, we struggle to describe him often, but that is because the creator is not bound by his creation. We must accept these truths, when laid out before us, as faith. And this faith is not blind, for blind faith has no clear object. Our object must be Jesus Christ through whom we have these truths of God and through whom we dare to believe them. Our object of faith is sure, so while we cannot see him, our faith is not blind and stumbling, but directed and confident.


    Schafer    May 12, 02:37 PM    #
  26. Furthermore, when considering the description of God, keep in mind that there have been many attempts to do this not only in a general way but also in a specific way. Keep in mind that every definition will have a difficulty because God does not operate in the parameters of his creation for he is the creator. That being said, keep in mind the apaphatic and kataphatic reasoning used by many and in the course of church history most notably by Boethius (although he was a heretic, he did identify the ways we talk about God, the orthodox would use them differently however.).


    Schafer    May 12, 02:42 PM    #
  27. I have been reading your site having once been a Christian. I don’t need proof and it’s not that I don’t have any faith, I have just become educated on other religions and their definition of “God”. What is common across all faiths that believe in a higher being is that they all develop their God with characteristics of themselves. If our image of God is that of a perfect human than it is a way to understand the world around us. Consider Greek mythology; it was believed for centuries yet today we think that it is funny to think of the world in that way. But we are doing exactly what they did. In order to explain something that can’t be explained we think that a higher being is the cause. When the Greek’s couldn’t explain thunderstorms and other environmental events they assumed the “gods” were upset with them. We now know that’s not right, so why do you have to explain something as happening because of something, and not because it just exists. And the point of Christianity is acceptance and living your life in accordance to a doctrine that was written as a guideline, however, you don’t see that lived out in the Christian religion. You get oppression, you get genocide, a sense of polarization is developed because the Christian way is the only way. It’s the only religion that teaches that other religions are completely wrong. Why should that be right? If religion develops based off of human understanding, than why would killing a whole group of people or judging people by physical appearance and sexual preference, you are not living your live to the moral code of this text that only a portion of the population accepts as true.


    Aaron L    Nov 29, 06:58 PM    #
  28. Your definitions for “god” have only provided secondary and relational attributes. You have not provided any primary attributes, which are needed to sufficiently define anything.


    Cooper    Jan 12, 12:13 PM    #
  29. As you read these comments you can understand why I’m a humanist.


    Adam    Apr 15, 12:58 PM    #
  30. This is really entertaining. I should do this every saturday night: have a bunch of people argue on the comments board. All partys involved know that the others aren’t going to become convinced, so why bother?


    — T.j.    Oct 24, 04:15 PM    #
  31. Praise God for Schafer

    “For the wisdom of this world is folly with God. For it is written, ‘He catches the wise in their craftiness,’” – 1 Corinthians 3:19. God’s true display of his Omnipotence, Love, Righteousness, and Justice were shown in the works of Jesus Christ. The bible is proven to be more historically accurate than other historically accepted texts and yet people still don’t believe. You can deny the holocaust, you can even deny the twin tower attacks or spin it any way you want, you can freely think anything you want. But the truth as I see it, is that God has revealed himself through the Bible, and he has preserved it from human corruption to this day.


    — Ichthus    Mar 24, 08:56 AM    #
  32. George Burns


    yadayadayada    May 26, 09:22 AM    #
  33. if i was deaf an blind how would god reflect on me? god is man made!


    i am god!    Aug 12, 09:14 PM    #
  34. Wow what a weak argument. If a god can exist eternally, so can anything else. Time is not consistent around the universe (space distortions cause distortions in time). Therefore, one can not reliably judge any amount of time before our methods to record it, because we have no bloody idea how it would have reacted!

    If there is some kind of god, then there’s some kind of god. But there is absolutely no reliable evidence for it that we can see.


    Nyth    Mar 19, 08:42 PM    #
  35. Hello Nyth,

    The point of this article is not to prove the existence of God, but merely to establish the ground rules by offering a definition.

    God does exist eternally according to classical Christian doctrine. You say that “anything” can therefore exist eternally – but why should that follow? For example, it turns out that Big Bang cosmology provides great evidence that the universe is not eternal.

    All the best.


    Kyle Deming    Mar 25, 01:04 AM    #
  36. God is an everlasting and eternal, self-existent, omnipresent, united, good, just, omniscient, unchanging, omnipotent, creative, intelligent, personal, and Supreme being.


    Disciplined Blogger    Apr 1, 02:17 PM    #
  37. How can existing outside existence be a quality that god expresses. That isn’t a quality proving existence it’s a lack of qualities expressed. The Minimalist Definition truly is minimalist in that it defines nothing.


    Cameron    Jun 11, 11:39 AM    #
  38. God is the vast pool of existence on which our ego’s are merely ripples, stirred to move through each other in a myriad of patterns and then.. settle.


    Danny    Oct 10, 04:58 PM    #
  39. How authoritative we all sound. Funny. Some offer conjecture with reason and the true sense of inquiry. Others have been so indoctrinated as to foolishly believe that they know the true meaning of God or god, whichever you choose. Whatever there is beyond time and space and experience, or whatever is not, will do so with or without our opinion of it. And it does not seem to fret us as we do it. So I continue in wonderment at my own rate the incredible world that exists around me, with the intention of enjoying as much of it as my conscience will allow. I know there will come a time when my conscious experience will end, or at least be transformed. I may become a part of the energy that is our universe and/or I may meet my maker. Either way, it is out of my hands. And no one I know can authoritatively assert otherwise. Enjoy what time you have, love as much as you can, and hope that you have made someone else’s experience seem worthwhile.


    — Kenn    Apr 3, 02:34 PM    #
  40. I hope to God that what I hope to exists within me & you & all of us.


    Billy Shaw    Jun 25, 02:49 AM    #
  41. I would like to add that omniscience and omnipotence are mutually exclusive. An all-knowing god cannot change its mind. If it cannot change its mind it is not all-powerfull.

    Another question is; can an omnipotent god create a stone that is too heavy for that same god to lift? If so, please explain.


    Dyz    Sep 5, 07:08 AM    #
  42. Well, but the problem arise already with the minimalist definition of god. I would claim that this definition is a bogus one, in that sense that it does not make any sense semantically. And hence, it’s not one we can use since words or reasons can’t really explain what we are talking about. For example, what does it even mean to exist outside of this universe. Or in other words to exist outside space and time as we know it. The word existence is inherently bound to factors as space and time in some way. Without these entities we are pretty much lost at sea. We talk about something that does not make sense semantically. It’s like talking about square circles. It just does not make sense. Even if you somehow could overcome the problem of existence without space and time, you will have to deal with a much more complex problem. How can consciousness or agency exist without space and time. Decision making requires some sort of container. Because decisions without actions are pointless. In order to act you have to be able to act within a container of some sort. Without space, what could there possibly be. Again, we are just using words that don’t mean anything. It’s gibberish. Decisions also require time, since a decision require a state before and after the decision was made. In other words, the meaning of the word decision is meaningless without a time perspective. This is the problem with modern theism. It’s so vague and conceptually absurd that theists really are merely using pointless words. They are basically talking about square circles. It just does not make sense. Not even semantically.


    Johan Jansén    Oct 15, 06:56 AM    #
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