Friday, 8 June 2007

God's Motivation

This chapter in God's Debris, starts off to explain the premise of the book's title. So far the argument has been building to this and the rest of the book tries to fit the argument together. This is a fictional story and isn't pretending to be anything more than a thought experiment. I am not sure how critical I will be later on as some parts of this book are story elements, but I guess we will see.

The question of an omnipotent God is brought up. If God is all powerful and all knowing, why would he need anything at all?

"Everything that motivates living creatures is based on some weakness or flaw. Hunger motivates animals. Lust motivates animals. Fear and pain motivate animals. A God would have none of those impulses. Humans are driven by all of our animal passions plus loftier-sounding things like self-actualization and creativity and freedom and love. But God would care nothing for those things, or if he cared would already have them in unlimited quantities. None of them would be motivating." (page 42)

I like how "loftier-sounding things" are written off. The argument is assuming that God couldn't be like humans. Earlier in the book it was suggested that it is arrogant to think humans are like God and also that God isn't interested in people. These two lines of reasoning seem to be where the quote is coming from which I have already commented on.

At the end of this chapter God's omnipotent is then limited as he has no knowledge of what its like to not exist. So it seems that God is all knowing, except for knowing what non-existence is like. It kinda sounds like one of those omnipotence paradoxes.

I think the term "omnipotence" may lead to confusion and gives the impression that God can do anything. If that is the case then it does lead to inconsistencies. God doesn't change or lie. God can not make a circle with four sides. He can not do logically impossible things. I much prefer omnipotence to mean that God dose what is in his nature, otherwise you open up contradictions with God having the ability to do illogical thing. Its God's nature to exist, so he can not not exist. (is that a valid sentence?)


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