A Theism

By Volaar

Atheism:  (n) à-thē-i-zəm, godlessness (the doctrine or belief that there is no God). 

Get It Now?

Our religious friends will be gratified to know that this word is at the bottom 50% of word lookups in the online Merriam-Webster dictionary, while our atheist friends will be disturbed to recognize that the mechanics of human perception render their basic doctrine mute in cases where the god under review is omnipresent.

Be all of this as it may be, I can no longer offer a heartfelt defense of any religious, or irreligious, dogma or doctrine; all of them carry the seeds of self destruction within themselves.  Each major dogmatic tradition denies that it affirms the necessity of a defense against the very omnipresence on which each relies on for legitimacy.  Both theism and atheism suffer from the “trap” that is dogma.

Questioning of any legitimate sort requires, at some point, that the querent establish the level of authority of both themselves and the entity they wish to interrogate or engage.  While authority of this sort does not establish ethical, moral or procedural legitimacy, this process – usually conducted in the blink of an eye – establishes a basis for reasonable expectations from the proposed dialogue. 

For example, I can ask my dog if the value of Pi is approximately 3.14159, which is a simple true or false question requiring very little effort for my dog to respond.  Many an intoxicated college student has put forward such a question of their furry pets on many occasions.  But is this an appropriate question to ask of a creature that has no earthy idea what Pi is, what approximate might mean or the notion of abstract value?  And is it reasonable for me to base a whole system of thought upon the answer to a single question that has an equal chance of being either true or false?

Likewise, problems of authority arise when questioning the existence or non-existence of an imagined life force or form capable of embodying omnipresence.  In the first place, omnipresence is not a quality that can be verified through human perception, and one could deduce that its omniscience could not be calculated mathematically, either.  We’d be equally likely of proving that everything in the universe is six inches and five years older from where it was when we went to sleep the prior evening.  Or, solving the problem of the following sentence being completely true.  However, the preceding sentence is absolutely false.  Insert your favorite irreconcilable conundrum here.

Either atheism or theism offers us a 50% probability of correctness.  Adding a postmodern spin to this line of thinking, both propositions could be either true or false in tandem – god is both is and is not, or god neither is nor is not.   To anyone of an agnostic temperament, the false dichotomy of “god is” or “god is not” can be readily seen. 

The latter of the postmodern assertions, that god neither is nor is not, is the same as suggesting that the question of the existence of god is irrelevant.  The former is highly suggestive of an issue of definition: a poor or deficient definition of a supreme being would allow for a kind of overlap between “isness” and “non-isness”, so the postmodern spin on the classic debate between theists and atheists does bear some illuminating fruit.  In summary, then, either god is, god is not, we have a poor definition of god, or the whole matter is completely irrelevant and we need to steer clear of this line of inquiry entirely.

Notice that while over the millennia philosophers have managed to develop some very precise qualities for a supreme being that must either be or not be, nowhere has anyone bothered to suggest the possibility that god’s existence or absence is irrelevant to us.  All of us would like to believe that the question of universe versus multiverse is critical to our understanding of ourselves, however no one has bothered to provide us with a really good argument in favor of resolving the matter without also damning us to some imaginary, eternal hell of fire and brimstone.  In point of fact, the atheist camp has some very astute observations in the direction of shutting the whole line of inquiry down post haste.

I am of the opinion that the mere fact that we are cognitively present and carrying on some manner of interaction suggests that there are some uni or multiversally important truths to be known that could well maintain the qualities of a notional omnipresent god.  So the atheists, for me, lose the argument up to the point where the theists fail to consider the complete irrelevance, in fact harmfulness, of drilling into the ancient details of what makes or breaks a notion of god that could be relevant to humanity. 

For example, the United States has a long and proud tradition of celebrating its affinity with a trustworthy god.  It is printed on our currency and declared from mountaintop to sleepy hamlet, to a nauseating degree, that the US and all that it represents comes by its relative prosperity honestly, and has in fact been ordained by an omnipresent god that this be so.

Meanwhile the corporations and governments manifested and operating under the auspices of the United States have manufactured a nuclear nightmare on the same island of Honshu where they first dubiously dropped two nuclear bombs not quite sixty-six years ago.   But this time, make no mistake, the arrogance and stupidity reaches beyond the level of breathtaking since the Cesium 137 that is now spewing all over the planet mimics, at a molecular level, the presence of potassium.  So, yes, ladies and gentlemen, whatever the media reports as being the current “exposure level” of Cesium 137 in your local environment, they are at least understating the exposure, by a factor of 1,000, what will soon be present in our global food supply.  This is due to the fact that potassium is an essential element in the creation and maintenance of all life on planet Earth.  This means that every living organism will store and hoard radioactive Cesium-137 as if its very life depends upon it, courtesy of General Electric, and the molecular similarity of radioactive Cesium 137 and the relatively harmless mineral potassium.

Other than the questionable ethics and morality of ever bringing such a nightmare, “to light,” what makes this issue a matter of theistic consideration is the fact that most, if not all, of these “captains of industry” who operate these destructive economic leviathans do so because they believe their ultimate reward, and their ultimate justification to act, rests with their favorite flavor of deity whom they visit, religiously, on a weekly basis.  So while they may bomb Hiroshima or pollute the water table of Tokyo via Fukushima, they are forgiven for their misdeeds by a loving god who sees no harm and no foul in them because somehow, someway, an ethical justification for the good of what they do might possibly exist.

To the churches who dispense the dispensation and excuse the dubious morality of the individuals involved in propagating and perpetuating these environmental holocausts I say that you are at least irrelevant and probably a harmful affront to matters which should always be relevant and kept so for all time.  There is no reasonable justification for the worship of a god that asks for the destruction of one’s own ability to care for one’s self, now or ever.  Worship of such a deity is plainly evident in the behavior and the moral justifications of behavior of persons who are psychologically indistinguishable from serial murderers, psychopaths and sociopaths, yet who are presently occupying positions of trust throughout our society in the United States and abroad.  This is what theistic elitism has wrought and one very powerful justification for keeping the less dubious philosophical arguments for atheism front and center – a great many dishonest, murderous things are going on in our troubled world and theistic institutions provide at least “covering fire” for their perpetration, if not their metastasis.

In the end what is and always will be relevant is that any god worthy of anyone’s consideration would not ask, nor demand, that life be divided against itself resulting in its eventual extermination.  God, to be omnipresent, must be capable of providing both the seeds of all Life and must be the ultimate survivor of any observable, or unobservable, conflict arising as a result of its activity within itself. 

Still, these god requirements do not represent anything of more relative importance than our treatment of the Japanese people, of any people or of ourselves.  Nor would a god capable of self interest, or obliged by a default survival requirement, ever ask or demand that we destroy our own wholeness in order to sustain our survival.  Survival and death are mutually excludable propositions, so nothing capable of bringing forth life “for all eternity” should be capable of countenancing its opposite in anything like an equal measure.

In the theism of the survivors of this century must rest a rock-solid commitment to the survival of the human species above and beyond the survival of any of its component races or creeds.  It has been our divided loyalty between church and our fellows that has lead to many painful lessons in self defeating behavior for many centuries of human history.

In future musings, I will offer up my thoughts on where the science, religion and postmodern/post-structuralist paradigm clashes seem to be leading us and the attitudes we might gainfully adopt out of enlightened self interest.

33 responses to “A Theism

  1. Doesn’t matter whether you’re theist or atheist. The one irrefutable truth is the exquisite intelligence of the order of things and consciousness seems to be the order of the the day. It seems to wonder upon itself, brings clarity to Davids saying ” Vanity vanity, all is vanity”

    • Exquisite intelligence is a projection from your mind onto a universe that is demonstrably chaotic beyond human comprehension.

      The beauty is in us, not “out there.”

  2. It all depends on what people understand by belief or faith. One thing that really annoys me about other Christians is when they say that they can be certain of a God who loves them and who died for them and so on. I also get annoyed with atheists who claim that the only logical position to hold is the non-existence of God. Certainty depends on knowledge. Faith is not about knowledge, although it does start from what we can know or perceive. I would say that faith is the bridge between what we perceive or know and what we would like to know, but faith isn’t knowledge. If we had knowledge of God, we wouldn’t need faith. For me, faith is more about what I would like to be true based on the little I do know or perceive. Therefore, faith should always subject to change because as we go through life, we will experience and perceive and know more.

    • Very nice. You’re right. Only in the beginning, when we lack knowledge or experience of something, do we need to rely on faith. That does not mean we should always avoid taking a position of faith on something, that actually seems impossible when we’re trying to progress in anything of substantial reward. If knowledge of God is what you or anyone here seeks, the Sanskrit literature of India sure to satisfy such a desire. Specifically, the texts used by the Vaisnavas.

      • I think I may have given you the wrong impression. Having come from a Hindu background originally, I am quite happy being a Christian. I think the point I was trying to make was that there is a relationship between faith and knowledge but the two are neither synonymous or opposites. If u like, the they are dialectical, feeding of each other. But as limited human beings, we can’t – in this life – ever know for sure if God really does exist and loves us and died for us. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t choose to trust in that and live accordingly. After all, none of us know for sure whether we will wake up tomorrow morning, but we generally live as though we will.

  3. Faith is belief put into motion. That is why faith without works simply dies.

    Humans take alot of their faith for granted, not actually acknowledging how much faith is involved in just the act of trying to communicate with each other. Many times we believe we’ve communicated how we feel to others, when nothing could be farther from the truth.

    Similarly, we abuse this faculty of faith and belief, coercing others to believe in the utility of systems of thought only meant to ensnare humans into moral, ethical, emotional and cognitive traps from which escape is very difficult and could take decades to achieve release.

    Knowledge is to truth as wine is to water. Truth is needed, but it is in the application of truth where humans love to play. But this knowledge is the knowledge of the relationships between illusions and is therefore not true knowledge for it cannot bring about the peace that comes from absolute certainty, perfectly unconflicted knowledge that cannot ever be opposed.

    If you want to know what it is you truly have faith in, observe your own behavior carefully. The beliefs you invest your faith in every day reveal the god(s) you worship. If you worship what, for you, are the incorrect god(s), peace will be impossible, making joy and true happiness impossible to achieve.

    That’s where miracles and revelations behold the notion of a merciful Creator: what is impossible manifests, if only for a brief flash, revealing the possibilities that lie only a few steps beyond where one actually is in their evolutionary development.

  4. The reality of it is, is all we really have is the moment be it whether we thought we’re privy to any real insight or not. The imperatve seems to be to keep looking. Bon appetite’

    • What we look for has already been found, we just haven’t learned to fully tune into this one moment that lasts for all eternity. Temporal cause and effect is revealed as a sinkhole into which almost all Creation fell.

      The looking out is the reaching in.

  5. Get along little ‘roguey.

    One can’t ask an honest question by inducing the existence of a world one expects to see and then determining if anything else fits into that preconceived notion.

    Induction, if it is to reveal something valuable and honest, has to imagine only the barest of requirements imposed on a simple variable, prove the case true for that simple variable, and then add a single unit of wholeness beyond the imagined case already proven, making three points on a single line of causality — zero, X and X plus 1.

    Living with what is is a good starting point. But what of this business of nothing? Is such a state, condition or vacuum ever possible?

    Then why, when I closed my eyes, was I taught that the Void was nothing relevant? It would seem to me, starting from I AM, that this darkness is among the most relevant and profound points a single human being can ever make.

    If “nothing” is impossible, then the perception of the possibility of nothing is a false perception. I have simply trained my mind to interpret my perceptions wrongly…that’s what I mean about apriori assumptions. If I think nothing is possible, then I will find it everywhere I look, hiding in the shadows behind the make-belief light that only exists to serve those shadows.

    Yet this is not sane thinking and can only lead to more insanity. And it has. And it will.

    I think if you examine your need for a single unary multiverse you’ll discover that, while it is still possible, it is a trick of individual perception that requires a singularity be imposed on any possibility of diversity as a matter of prejudice. Yet, even in this singularity, there is still the Observer, the thing Observed and the Process of Observation, all of which must come together to form this singular truth of all things great and small.

    The Observer views the Observered only through a mirrored reflection kept quietly tucked away in the hidden enormity of what we believe we see and the impossibly limited manner in which we perceive it, limitation being the only way perception could render enormity to our brains in the first place.

  6. As a spark witnessing a conflagration

  7. That’s interesting that you’ve went from Hindu to Christian and I from Christian to “Hindu”. I put “Hindu” in quotations because Hindu is not a Sanskrit word and thus is not a proper term for those who subscribe to the Vedic injunctions.

    I disagree with your belief that we cannot directly experience God in this life, while in this body. Personally, I can attest to seeing God in His aspect of the all-pervading Brahman effulgence. And, according to the Vedic literature this is but the first of three possible direct perceptions of God.

    I went to South India (Coimbatore) just a couple months ago and it was obvious to me that many of the locals were highly impressionable when presented with propaganda from the West, mostly the United States and Britain. Little do they know because it is their own traditions, culture and supporting knowledge (Vedas) that is the greatest source of true wealth on this planet. America and the West in general are bereft of such wealth. That’s why we (Westerners) are so materialistic and backward when it comes to living sustainably, as Viṣṇu, the sustainer, would have it. 😉

    • I agree that we can experience God in this life and that we can see God at work in the world, in us and in others. Actually, you’ve been really helpful. Whilst the knowledge of God we have in this life will never full and complete, it is still knowledge, in the same way that we never have full knowledge of our loved ones. Not having full knowledge of God is actually quite exciting because it’s kinda like being in love. I guess when we say we have faith in God, what we mean is that we have faith that the knowledge of God we have is the knowledge of God and not something else.

      Thanks.

  8. Read a saying many years ago that’s stuck with me.
    “God is a manifestation of the intelligent universe”
    Been through many ups and downs but at the times I wasn’t conflicted or distracted by things. I ponder as all do I’m sure, in those quiet moments, I catch a glimpse into the intricate order of things and realize an intelligence to it all that taunts me to want to know more. I feel this to be true, I believe this to be an instinctual journey we’re all on, it’s hardwired into us irregardless of whether we accept it or deny it as so much hooey. As the line in the song goes
    ” I swear there ain’t no Heaven but I pray there ain’t no Hell”

  9. The word manifestation meaning a realization and as we come to realize the great works that we are a part of.

  10. It’s silly to think of God as a manifestation of an intelligent universe. It should be obvious that it is the other way around. A child is not a manifestation of a sandcastle.

  11. A little autistic are we?

  12. I must have misunderstood your comment. I don’t believe I’m autistic..

  13. My apologies, but I did think of a better word, dyslexic. Volaar stated it well in one of his comments; “Many times we believe we’ve communicated how we feel to others, when nothing could be further from the truth”,”. I got that saying from a publication called “Ramparts” from the very early 70’s. That was our way then of disseminating truth during the first mass awakening. For awhile, I thought you were Albury, transmografied from another Coto Posting.

  14. “God is a manifestation of the intelligent universe.” This quote stands as backward to me. That’s why I stated, “A child is not a manifestation of a sandcastle.” This is the statement I’m addressing and calling nonsense. But somehow you’ve concluded that I’m autistic and/or dyslexic.. interesting.

  15. Well they call us lefties sinisters. We see things from the inside out or vice versa. Very differently than you left hemishere types. I see that statement in a way which is obviously diametrically opposed to how you perceive it.
    Websters New World Dictionary ( but one that’s probably older than you)
    Manifest : Apparent to the senses or the mind; obvious
    : to show plainly, reveal

  16. Your position on the quote in question is still unclear to me.

    “God is a manifestation of the intelligent universe.” This implies that the universe is a greater whole or manifestation than God, being that God id a manifestation OF it. Holding God to be the omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, and the supreme absolute truth, this statement is backwards.

    You’re writing has been unclear. You could ease the confusion by expressing yourself more coherently to avoid miscommunication, which, I agree, is a common problem. Practice what you preach, elder.

  17. Obvious misinterpretation as I maybe misinterpreted the word stupid. You read into it as you will as will I. If it’s stupid to you, that’s your read, not mine

  18. So what is your “read” on the quote, O veritable1?

  19. Reads pretty simple to me. All it is, is an aware acknowledgement. Seems it went over your head.

  20. You didn’t answer the question, again. So again, what is your “read” on the quote, O veritable1?

  21. Oh but I did. You just didn’t get again

  22. Listen, I’ll come straight here. I’m as you, one of the innocent, gullible just trying to figure it out. In this age with the technology to be able to communicate and find facts online, what we’re involved with is an information explosion and we’re all trying to injest as much information as fast as we can to get a handle on what’s going down. We each have our own particular views and prejudices that colour our take on things, some might be good insight, some might borderline on wishful thinking, who knows but I think sometimes we’re privy to flashes of understanding. I trust my gut instincts, I think too many have been disconnected from theirs. What I see is all we really have is our feelings, that’s what connects us to our right now. My expressed views but I only qualify them as conjecture. I’d have to qualify how I see things from a Bill Hicks perspective. He must have been doing some good acid. George Carlin comes hard to mind also.

  23. All I asked for was a simple reply, an honest attempt at stating your position on a quote. That’s it. Nothing more. I believe God is more than an artifact of the minds of bewildered men. And I simply wanted a discussion on the topic. That’s it. Nothing more.

  24. The problem I have is with the word God, it’s a word way overused and abused. I see an underlying order to things and catch hints of an incredible intelligence in it all. I don’t believe that it’s created of our minds but quite the opposite, we are a product of it reflecting upon itself. I’ve read and know people that just think this is all one big calamitous accident and that we exist on this little speck of a rock out in the middle of nowhere with no interconnectedness to anything. This may be wishful thinking on my part but I don’t believe it to be that way. “They” built a giant expensive apparatus in Cern Switzerland just to try to answer that question, it reads that they’re also bewildered by it all, I don’t think they quite found their particle. I realize that I’ve been vague in providing an answer but it’s a question of speculation and conjecture, I don’t want to be cast into the role of devils advocate. I believe that nature has a creative urge to be conscious and we are a result of that. The underlying force, I’d call spirituality and that spirit’s in and the order of everything.

  25. I completely agree that “God” is an extremely loaded term, carrying so many connotations. So of course we must make an effort to discern how individuals are choosing to use this word. My spiritual master stresses the use of dictionary-defined meanings for this reason – to avoid further muddying-up the already very murky water.

    God is all things. He is the sum total of everything. Otherwise there is no meaning to the term infinite. No greater subject can be conceived of or approached by the mind. That’s what makes humans special – their ability to question and learn about God, the Absolute Truth. The great thing is, as we learn about God, we learn how to love, again.

    That is the Vedic version of the purpose of life in a teeny tiny nutshell.

  26. All along, we were in agreement, it was a matter of getting around to actualizing it. We’re seekers each in our own way. I’ve learned to tune into my feelings on things and as most ponder, we’ve all had experiences whether we acknowledge them or not that tell us, there’s vastly more to this picture and in the movie theater of the mind, it can only be visualized as we grow to be able conceptualize the big picture as nature intended. We live in an incredible time, not that they all weren’t, but this one is more so. I read a statistic spanning back into a projected timeline that humanity has existed as we are that states that there is currently as many people on the planet now as has been since our dawn. Makes me think we’re here to witness the turn of events. Each of us knows to a greater or lesser extent that we have to assume greater stewardship of the planet in order for all species to survive but we’re powerless to be able to turn it back short of a great awakening to be able to throw off the yoke of the destructive status quo that we all live in the shadow of. The earth is a living conscious entity and from the smallest to the biggest, all exists in a symbiotic relationship with everything else but in our collective consciousness, we’ve fragmented it into to small parts that we’ve been taught to think as each existing away from the rest. The power mongers greatest fear is that we come awake and throw off the shackles of their contrived paradigm. As we speak, that’s just exactly what’s happening if in only a tiny portion on this posting, but just the fact that we’re doing it and acknowledging a belief amongst ourselves that is counter to the propaganda that passes for truth is a positive note that there’s a big interplay in nature to restore the balance. There’s more of us every day and the ground swell has really just started, we’ll become more adept as we go and the great flood will overtake what’s been put in place to contain it.
    Dawning of the Age of Aquarius. Sign of the Waterbearer

  27. Glorious. We’ve managed to transcend some significant barriers. And what do you know, we both look much better on the other side.

    God is mind blowing. If our minds are not completely destroyed by the thought of God, we’re destitute and bereft of all true wealth. The Supreme Personality of Godhead is so attractive, so ineffably full of splendor and glory our purified hearts melt intensely in ecstasy.

    You’re right, this earth and ultimately all things are spiritual. The sun, too, is a living being, full of intelligence. All this knowledge is a part of humanity, subverted by angry, inimical beings whom you spoke.

    God bless you, veritable1, Sir.

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