A reason why God must exist.

Caroljeen

Well-known member
An explanation why God exists from Greg Boyd who was an atheist, became a Christian, and then went to University and took a class on the Bible as literature and one on Evolution that destroyed his new found faith in Christ. The reasoning that began to lead him back to God...start/end- minute: second- 41:35-50:20

 
His argument commits the fallacy of composition (in a kind of reverse form): if the universe as a whole has certain characteristics, then every part of it (including us) has to have those same characteristics.
It seems like common sense to me. From an evolutionary stand point, why do we search for meaning, purpose in life? Why do we have that longing? Nature provides for all of our natural needs so why do we have these other needs or desires that nature cannot provide for? Boyd compares it to his example of a carp in the Sahara desert floundering around for water (something it needs).

His point is that nature should have everything we need since we come from nature. I've tried to make this point a few times since I've been hanging out in the Atheist forums but not as well as he does.

He related personal properties that we have with God, is because they cannot be found in nature. I think it makes good sense.
 
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It seems like common sense to me. From an evolutionary stand point, why do we search for meaning, purpose in life? Why do we have that longing? Nature provides for all of our natural needs so why do we have these other needs or desires that nature cannot provide for? Boyd compares it to his example of a carp in the Sahara desert floundering around for water (something it needs).

His point is that nature should have everything we need since we come from nature. I've tried to make this point a few times since I've been hanging out in the Atheist forums but not as well as he does.
Evolution is a messy, imperfect process. In the vast majority of the time, organisms eventually fail to adapt sufficiently to their environment, and so go extinct. Thinking that evolution always produces a perfect match between an organisms needs and its environment misunderstands evolution.

Evolution can make a solution to some environmental pressure and that solution can be used by the organism for **other** things that may not address any evolutionarily significant need, just as long as **some** evolutionary need was addressed. So that evolution has evolved organisms that wonder about meaning merely says that evolution produced an organism with a brain capable of abstract thought. Abstract thought in general may well have served some evolutionary purpose, but that abstract thought can then be put to other purposes or questions.
 
It seems like common sense to me. From an evolutionary stand point, why do we search for meaning, purpose in life? Why do we have that longing?
The evolutionary answer is, "because it increases the likelihood of survival".

Which makes sense - isn't a nihilist less likely to seek to preserve their own life?
Nature provides for all of our natural needs so why do we have these other needs or desires that nature cannot provide for?
This is a question, not an argument.
Boyd gives an answer, but an answer is not the same as the answer.
His point is that nature should have everything we need since we come from nature.
Nature has everything we need to continue to exist.

People don't need purpose or meaning - they don't collapse and die without it.
They need oxygen, water, food.

(And, what of the people who find their meaning in things that do occur naturally - friends, hobbies, material possessions?)
 
An explanation why God exists from Greg Boyd who was an atheist, became a Christian, and then went to University and took a class on the Bible as literature and one on Evolution that destroyed his new found faith in Christ. The reasoning that began to lead him back to God...start/end- minute: second- 41:35-50:20

Hmm. I think possibly the key phrase for his being led back to God was, why would a meaningless universe create creatures that long for meaning? We long for meaning so the universe must have meaning behind it, right?

I take it he means ultimate meaning such that Christianity might provide? My problem with his reasoning is that I don't see why it's necessarily so that a universe without meaning wouldn't produce creatures who long for meaning. We are thinking, curious creatures so it's not surprising our thoughts would turn to, what's it all about.

From an atheistic point of view, there is still meaning to be found in life even though it might not be ultimate meaning. I think many atheists long for some kind of meaning to their lives and they find it without reference to God.

I think Greg Boyd wants to believe, he said he never felt God gave up on him, and he found a reason to believe again. My point is, it's not a conclusive reason to think God exists.
 
It seems like common sense to me. From an evolutionary stand point, why do we search for meaning, purpose in life? Why do we have that longing? Nature provides for all of our natural needs so why do we have these other needs or desires that nature cannot provide for? Boyd compares it to his example of a carp in the Sahara desert floundering around for water (something it needs).

His point is that nature should have everything we need since we come from nature. I've tried to make this point a few times since I've been hanging out in the Atheist forums but not as well as he does.

He related personal properties that we have with God, is because they cannot be found in nature. I think it makes good sense.
What is that meaning and purpose from a Christian perspective? I see Christians say that life has meaning and purpose because of God, but never say what that actually is (eg here).
 
From an atheistic point of view, there is still meaning to be found in life even though it might not be ultimate meaning. I think many atheists long for some kind of meaning to their lives and they find it without reference to God.
The objection would be

"Why does any human look for meaning beyond the natural?"

Because one is enough.
 
The objection would be

"Why does any human look for meaning beyond the natural?"

Because one is enough.
Is that what he said? If so, not all humans do look for meaning beyond the natural. And those that do can do so for reasons that have no bearing on whether there is a beyond the natural.
 
I should, however, be able to convince you that God is unworthy of your devotion given that He, according to scripture, violates the moral standard that you and every other human being, minus the true socio/psychopath, holds
LOL....like murdering babies in the flood? I trust you won't try that argument again...as you lost last time.
 

................. he claims and then goes on to give quotes of mine which make no mention whatsoever of moral justification.

I never talk about morals. They don't interest me. I believe in Love.

When are you going to learn that attributing quotes to me that I never made just makes you look like the small man you are?
 
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Evolution is a messy, imperfect process. In the vast majority of the time, organisms eventually fail to adapt sufficiently to their environment, and so go extinct. Thinking that evolution always produces a perfect match between an organisms needs and its environment misunderstands evolution.
Boyd said twice that evolution is not the solution as to why we have longings that nature, which evolved us, does not meet by saying that "We can get a little mileage from evolutionary theory, but it doesn't go far enough." Imo, he is saying that evolution does not give a satisfying answer as to why we have these longing that it doesn't meet. Even if evolution is a messy, imperfect (irrational) process, Greg is saying, that evolution meets our needs to breath, eat, and have sex, but doesn't meet the longings we have for meaning, purpose, our sense of morality (evolution is amoral) or our rationality (evolution is irrational). I don't agree that Greg is misunderstanding evolution.
Evolution can make a solution to some environmental pressure and that solution can be used by the organism for **other** things that may not address any evolutionarily significant need, just as long as **some** evolutionary need was addressed. So that evolution has evolved organisms that wonder about meaning merely says that evolution produced an organism with a brain capable of abstract thought. Abstract thought in general may well have served some evolutionary purpose, but that abstract thought can then be put to other purposes or questions.
You are using circular reasoning (a fallacy) to explain that evolution produced an organism with a brain capable of extract thought.

How do you know that Greg's conclusion isn't correct?

"Either the universe is...the ultimate reality in which we find ourselves is either like us...it's personal, rational, purposeful, and has a sense of morality or ultimate reality is radically unlike us...it's irrational, amoral, and its purposeless. If it's irrational, first thing, you can't explain how we evolved...and it is miserable and you can't account for why we are the way we are and you can't account for why we should be able to account for it...and it's all irrational in the first place.
Whatever else exists there must be a personal God out there. Ultimate reality must be personal. I'm a little mini version of that. Cause if that's true then, I'm at home in the universe. There's a reason why I am the way I am."
 
The evolutionary answer is, "because it increases the likelihood of survival".
That's not a sufficient answer for many people and without it some commit suicide.
Which makes sense - isn't a nihilist less likely to seek to preserve their own life?
I would think so. Boyd admitted that the thought had crossed his mind but he didn't know if he could act on it.
This is a question, not an argument.
Boyd gives an answer, but an answer is not the same as the answer.
Is The answer, your answer?
Nature has everything we need to continue to exist.
Just existing isn't enough for most humans.
People don't need purpose or meaning - they don't collapse and die without it.
They need oxygen, water, food.
Life is more meaningful and fulfilling with both of those. Boyd acknowledged that we have air, food, and sex. Those elementary needs are met but why do some of us feel like fish out of water if that is all that there is?
(And, what of the people who find their meaning in things that do occur naturally - friends, hobbies, material possessions?)
Those things hardly fill the void that is left when God is left out of the equation which Boyd felt when he became an atheist again. Only this time he was unable to numb himself with drugs, sex, and rock'n'roll as he did before he became a Christian.
 
Is The answer, your answer?
Prove that it is The answer - prove that a god is The reason that (some) people seek meaning beyond the natural.
Asking one's opponent for their answer, is a fallacy.
Those elementary needs are met but why do some of us feel like fish out of water if that is all that there is?
That is a question, not an argument.
Boyd must prove that his answer is the answer.
Those things hardly fill the void that is left when God is left out of the equation which Boyd felt when he became an atheist again.
Boyd can speak for himself.
 
Hmm. I think possibly the key phrase for his being led back to God was, why would a meaningless universe create creatures that long for meaning? We long for meaning so the universe must have meaning behind it, right?
Yes, a longing for meaning and purpose and a sense that he has of not belonging in this world. When he considers evolution (which I think he believes because of the evidence) as simply "chemicals in motion" in our brain that produce in us thoughts, he doesn't believe it can account for these longings which are counter evolution and he gives a couple of analogies.
I take it he means ultimate meaning such that Christianity might provide? My problem with his reasoning is that I don't see why it's necessarily so that a universe without meaning wouldn't produce creatures who long for meaning. We are thinking, curious creatures so it's not surprising our thoughts would turn to, what's it all about.
He used rationality as something an irrational process, like evolution, cannot produce/evolve.
From an atheistic point of view, there is still meaning to be found in life even though it might not be ultimate meaning. I think many atheists long for some kind of meaning to their lives and they find it without reference to God.
If you listen to the whole video, Greg's mother died when he was very young and he seemed to be fixated on death. He would take his girls out their first dates with him to a graveyard.

I agree with you that many atheists likely do find meaning for their lives in this world.
I think Greg Boyd wants to believe, he said he never felt God gave up on him, and he found a reason to believe again. My point is, it's not a conclusive reason to think God exists.
I think he went to the atheist philosophy professor at this university to find persuasive answers to the meaning of life and was let down.
He said it took him 4-5 years to really get back in the Christian stream. It was a real struggle for him.
 
What is that meaning and purpose from a Christian perspective? I see Christians say that life has meaning and purpose because of God, but never say what that actually is (eg here).
Meaning and purpose present more questions when a person becomes a Christian.
Why we exist? Why did God create us/ How does God expect us to live? Does God have a purpose for our lives and what does that entail.
Those questions are worked out and answered by reading the Bible, having a relationship with God in prayer, and seeking God for those answers.
 
Boyd said twice that evolution is not the solution as to why we have longings that nature, which evolved us, does not meet by saying that "We can get a little mileage from evolutionary theory, but it doesn't go far enough." Imo, he is saying that evolution does not give a satisfying answer as to why we have these longing that it doesn't meet. Even if evolution is a messy, imperfect (irrational) process, Greg is saying, that evolution meets our needs to breath, eat, and have sex, but doesn't meet the longings we have for meaning, purpose, our sense of morality (evolution is amoral) or our rationality (evolution is irrational). I don't agree that Greg is misunderstanding evolution.

You are using circular reasoning (a fallacy) to explain that evolution produced an organism with a brain capable of extract thought.
Can you explain where the circularity is?

How do you know that Greg's conclusion isn't correct?
By the reasoning in my previous posts here.

"Either the universe is...the ultimate reality in which we find ourselves is either like us...it's personal, rational, purposeful, and has a sense of morality or ultimate reality is radically unlike us...it's irrational, amoral, and its purposeless.
He's missing other options. It could be some from the first list directly above, and some from the second (personal but irrational, etc.).

If it's irrational, first thing, you can't explain how we evolved...and it is miserable and you can't account for why we are the way we are and you can't account for why we should be able to account for it...and it's all irrational in the first place.
I don't even know what it means to say the universe as a whole is irrational. The universe as a whole isn't something that can make determinations that we could say are rational or not. His thought here is no coherent.
 
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