Thursday, February 25, 2010

Gods and Ghosts

I remember the first time I had a real debate about religion.

I was in high school and was home, online, in an AOL chat room with some of my friends - one of whom was a devout Baptist.

I remember feeling rather strongly about arguing for logic and science and what I believed to be common sense, while he was more focused on his beliefs that were acquired through years of church activities and religious teachings.

I stood by my seemingly bullet-proof claim that the Bible and stories of Jesus and the like were all just extravagant tales written by men who had no connection to God. I distinctly recall saying how aliens from another planet could've landed here thousands of years ago and planted these beliefs, and there's just as much "proof" to support that happening as there is to support the elaborate stories of Jesus found in the Bible.

Fast forward a little over a decade later and I still have pretty much the same view on the topic.
(I have a love of logic. So sue me!)

Movies such as this one below further that belief:

Though not 100% accurate, Zeitgeist shows what I believe to be much more of a factual explanation of the origins of Jesus and Christianity.

However, it's only in recent years that I've come to the enlightened conclusion that arguing about the accuracy of religion by using logic is utterly pointless.
No one can ever truly prove or disprove the stories in the Bible or the Koran or the Torah, etc.

But, not only is an argument about the validity of these stories one you can't win, but it's also one that isn't really worth having at all.

Let's be realistic - The whole reason for the existence of religion is to give people some sense of hope and purpose in their lives.

It's goals are to teach goodness, which will ideally lead to happy people in happy societies. So in the end, any reasonable person will realize that nobody wants to be the one to try and discredit anything meant to spread happiness and goodness.

So whether you can put your faith in these ideals or not, it's purpose is what's really important.

Similarly, I've also adopted a deeper understanding of the concept of ghosts.
Since I love logic, you can probably understand that I am skeptical of the notion of spirits and hauntings, etc. I can't watch any of the Ghost Hunter shows without thinking that anyone who claims to "experience" something is just another person who has succumbed to the power of suggestion.

But after thinking about it, the real answer seems almost too obvious:
People believe in God for the same reason they believe in ghosts -- the prospect of something after death!

What a great relief it must be to believe that we aren't just clumps of cells that live and die and decompose in a mundane scientific cycle, but instead, we are all unique souls that live on in a beautiful world that we can never truly explain or understand.

May God bless you all.

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