I was brought up in an atheistic household but I through my discussions with others I have come to believe in a higher power that most people would equate with God. Through watching the New Zealand Christian TV channel called Shine TV I found resonance with my own life and purpose and as a result I have written this article. This article was improved thanks to helpful email comments from my two cousins Murray and Nicky Pearson. I might also mention that my great grandfather Samuel Pearson was a Christian evangelist who left his home country of New Zealand and for about a year attempted to evangelise the United States of America.
There are two competing arrows of time: The God arrow and the Satan arrow. The God arrow is the principle of order, also known as cosmos to borrow a term from Carl Sagan. The Satan arrow is disorder, also known as chaos, which is equal to the principle of entropy from Thermodynamics, which states that over time a closed system such as the Universe becomes more and more disordered. Here are some examples of the Satan arrow in action:
The God arrow espouses the opposite principle: over time the Universe becomes more and more ordered. Here are some examples of the God arrow in action: All of the following processes increase local order in the Universe, that is to say decrease local entropy.
Taken to its extreme, the God arrow tells us that at the end of the Universe will be a creature that is highly complex, possibly complex enough to be all knowing (omniscient) and all powerful (omnipotent) and all present (omnipresent). If this creature finds its way outside of space time then it will be meaningful to say that this create just is, rather than will be. We can equate this entity with God.
I believe in evolution and the big bang theory of how the Universe was created. I also disbelieve in the Bible's teaching that the Universe was created about 4,000 years B.C. As stated in the previous section, I believe in the existence of a higher power. I also believe that science and religion are not mutually exclusive. In the future, science and religion will merge together into one all-encompassing theory.
Here is a quote from Richard Dawkins on the old testament of the Bible:
The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.
I agree with him, although I believe that the God of the New Testament is a much better deity to worship.
After some thought it seems to me that it is not logical to believe in a creator of all things. As Carl Sagan once said: if the Universe was created by God, then the natural question to ask is this: Who or what created God? To which the theist would answer: Nothing created God, God just is. To which the atheist would answer: If God's status can be just is, then why can't the same thing be true of the Universe? Can't the Universe just be? So I agree that it is not rational to believe in an intelligent creator. But at the other end of time, it is still rational to believe that evolution will produce God and therefore God will exist. Since it might be possible for this being to escape the confines of time and space, it is still reasonable to say God just is.
God loves all of us and has a unique plan for each one of us, irrespective of our abilities. God's love for us is unconditional, much like a mother's love for her child. To determine God's plan for you, you need to meditate or pray and engage in discussion with others. By comparing yourself with others of greater and lesser intelligence than you, you can determine where you sit in the scheme of things and come to learn God's plan for you. Some people preach that it is wrong to compare yourself with others since you will become simultaneously vain and bitter since there will almost always be someone who is worse than you or someone who is better than you, but I disagree with this and think that comparison with others is one of the best ways to learn about yourself.
Most important quality you can have in life is to be a good person and to practise the principle of love thy neighbour as thy self. Any abilities you have should be used in the service of God to make the world a better place and not to serve yourself. Greater ability implies a greater demand for serving God. An important determinant in your behaviour is your probability of being killed P. Since different people have different P, then for some moral issues, different moralities apply to different people, which contradicts with the work in morality by Immanuel Kant.
The Christian religion, and specifically the New Testament of the Bible appeals to women because while men want to impregnate a lot of women, woman want a man who will stick around long enough to raise a child, and therefore moral character is more important to them. This theory of men's and women's behaviour is only a first approximation. Most people in their lives can get beyond this. For example a man might turn down a woman's offer of sex, as I have done on several occasions because I am not interested in having children until much later on into the future.
People living in countries with a social welfare system have a lower probability of being killed than people who live in a country without a welfare system. The reason for this is so: Not hiring someone for a job in a country with a welfare system does not kill that person since they can always go on a welfare benefit, whereas not hiring someone for a job in a country without a welfare system might kill that person since there is no benefit to supplement their income beyond the poverty line.
The larger a person's probability of being killed, the more that in their dress and appearance they will blend in with other people. People who have a non-zero probability of being killed by another person Q will (in the absence of religion) terminate their relationships. Religion provides a pretext for people to interact with people who have a non-zero non-zero probability of being killed by Q. When I talk with atheist male friends they always annoyingly insist on calling me mate to emphasise that they are not homosexuals, whereas Christian males don't need to call me mate to be friends.
Here are some signs of how to recognise when a person is a moral prophet for you:
I am in a somewhat rare position that I can look different from other people. I choose to look like my all-time idol Richard Wagner.) Based on my appearance alone in isolation you might think it am a better prophet than my idols Richard Stallman and Bjarne Stroustrup, but the reality is that I live in a country with a better welfare system than the United States where these two individuals live. This gives me a lower P which allows me to appear more different than them. Therefore I do not consider myself to be an example of a moral prophet, whereas I do consider Richard Stallman and possibly Bjarne Stroustrup to be examples of such.
My prophets have claimed that atheists have a sense of morality that is inherently inferior to theist morality. One example of this is laughing at another person's misfortune. Atheists see nothing wrong with laughing at another person's misfortune or otherwise deprecating another person without good reason. Once a theist has learnt enough they will not treat other people in this way. I should note that laughing at the misfortune of fictional people or yourself is okay, along with laughing at the misfortune of politicians is fair game because they live their lives in the public arena. Here is a comment from alt.christian.religion:
Just about all comedy is based on the misfortune of others from the first old lady and banana skin you hear as a kid and on to adult stand up. So not laughing at the unexpected or misfortune of others may lead to a grey world of PC blandness.
I take this point, but I could point out that there are still plenty of things to laugh about.
Preachers like Benny Hinn claim to have to power anoint (to purge individuals of sickness and disease by the touch of their hand). I believe that this works only via a placebo effect. That is to say, if you think you will be healed then you might be healed. This implies that his anointing is no better than having positive faith in your own body's ability to heal itself. Click on the following article for a proposal of a theory that Jesus Christ used a mixture composed of 6 parts marijuana to one part olive oil for anointing people with. This is what he used to clear ailments and therefore explains why his healing was less than a miracle and more than a metaphor or placebo effect since he was administering medication. Marijuana use medicinally is known, for example, to clear cataracts.
When Christians pray to their God I am not sure if there is anyone listening, but whether or not this is true is not important. Prayer, like meditation helps the prayer to verbalise their moral thoughts, which helps them to become a better person. I personally prefer meditation to prayer. Note however that you don't lose anything if you pray and God does not exist but you do lose something if you don't pray and God does exist. Therefore everybody should pray unless the time spent praying is too precious to you.
Another way to look at the value of prayer is as follows: If you pray to God and God doesn't exist, you only lose the time spent praying. If you pray to God and God exists, you gain a lot. Therefore it is rational to pray to God so long as you can afford to spend time praying to God.
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