I Believe

“But, the Truth is that there is an order to this universe that did not happen by “chance”. You seem quick to use your “logic” as a reason to not believe but you also refuse/have no interest in seeking a truth (Jesus existence). So, why don’t you share with your readers exactly what you do believe. (as you have made it clear what you don’t believe) Who made you and this universe, why are you here and where are you going when your life here is done? Please share….”

The above was posed to me by a commenter.  My response here:

First off, concluding that “the Truth is that there is an order to this universe did not happen by ‘chance'” is only part of certain belief systems.  Where you see order, I see randomness, and yes, chance.

To say that I “refuse/have no interest in seeking a truth (Jesus existence)” is also an assumption, and a misguided one at that.  Is this the assumption one of a certain religious belief system makes when someone else does not come to the same conclusions they do?  I don’t see things the way you do, so that must mean I refuse/have no interest in seeking a truth?  That sounds pretty arrogant to me.  Maybe it wasn’t intended that way.

Again, as I’ve explained before, I came to the conclusions I now hold after  a lengthy process of analysis, examination, and soul-searching.  I didn’t adopt Atheism to be difficult or a rebel, or whatever some people might think – and I did not adopt Atheism because I was hurt by someone or felt let down by god.  The process of my Christian beliefs – which I held dear for the vast majority of my life – falling away took place during a very peaceful and contented time in my life.  It was not brought on by trauma or sour grapes.

And you might again take note that I have seen it from both sides – as a Believer, and as a non-believer.

So what do I believe?  Well . . .

I believe that science and physics have gone extremely far in explaining the origins of the universe and of mankind.  And although science certainly does not have all the answers, the answers it has come up with seem vastly more plausible to me than supernatural or divine answers.  I believe that it’s very likely that the universe started as something infinitely smaller than it is now, and through a process of expansion and combustion – having nothing to do with a divine force outside itself – became what it is now, and even now it is ever-changing.  Who made this universe?  Nobody.  It just happened.

Who made me?  Why, my parents did.  And their parents made them, and their parents made them.  And the whole lot of humankind came into being through a process of evolution.  By chance, this one planet in this universe evolved in such a manner as to be hospitable to life, and did actually spawn life, in the beginning – millions of years ago, as rudimentary one-celled organisms that over millenia evolved into all the various and wondrous species that are present today (and lots that are no longer present).

Why am I here?  There is no reason I’m here.  I’m here by chance, because a certain sperm belonging to my father fertilized a certain egg belonging to my mother, and the resultant genetic concoction ended up being me.  If the question really is, what is the point of my existence, and what is the meaning of my life, there is no point.  That does not mean that I believe life is meaningless – far from it!  But I believe we each create our own meaning.  My life and my existence are not part of some grander plan, so in that respect, there is no point.  I came to exist by chance, and my life is meaningful to me and to those who care about me.

Where am I going after my life here is done?  Nowhere.  I will be dead.  Finito.  My life is finite, as is every single life on this earth.  We are born, we live, and we die.  The end.  We have one brief lifespan, and it would be nice to think that everyone would make the most of that, knowing it’s all they get.

I believe in being a good person for the sake of being a good person: because it feels good, and it makes society work, and because I want to be treated in kind.

That’s what I believe.

Questions for you Believers: where did God come from?  Who made him?  What was he doing before he created the universe and the earth?

8 Comments on “I Believe”

  1. Nika
    May 28, 2011 at 3:42 pm #

    The other day I read a great blog post by Derek Miller. He wrote it before he died. Read the part titled “What was at the end”. He talks about what happens after death and I totally agree with him…


    • Lisa
      May 28, 2011 at 9:47 pm #

      That is incredibly moving. And also struck a chord for me, as my husband is in remission from stage 3 colorectal cancer. Thank you for sharing this.

  2. Lauren
    May 29, 2011 at 8:34 pm #

    Thank you for posting this. I completely agree with all that you have said and I cannot believe that other people can be so pushy and low as to try and push their religious beliefs and agendas upon others.
    I have been reading your blogs for along time, but haven’t commented before. Thank you for standing up for yourself and standing firm against all of those preaching conformity.
    My daughter’s high school Environmental Science class is not allowed to teach evolution without saying that it may or may not be true. The scientific facts are all there and for a science class to not completely teach it really angers me.
    There is no question or conflict concerning evolution in the science world, only in the political world, and that is what really bothers me. How can you cut off the truth and conceal it in a school, especially when there is so much evidence to back it up, when there are very few religious artifacts that are unquestionably true?
    Thank you so much for sharing your views.

    • Lisa
      May 29, 2011 at 9:27 pm #

      A supportive comment … thank you; I appreciate it.

  3. Sarah
    May 30, 2011 at 6:20 pm #

    I agree with you and I’m glad I found your blog… makes me feel less alone out here!

    I think believers have to believe that we simply closed our minds to the “truth” and were determined not to believe, otherwise our burning in hell for it would be very unfair wouldn’t it? 🙂

  4. Addie
    June 2, 2011 at 1:18 pm #

    I really enjoyed that Derek Miller post – very nice…

    Not starting a debate of any kind, but since you asked for a Christian viewpoint of where God came from and who made Him?
    – well, the answer is that He always was and will be. He is God and operates outside the lines of our human concept of time… even as a Christian, its hard for me to grasp it all

    • Lisa
      June 2, 2011 at 3:35 pm #

      Addie, yes, this is the explanation I grew up with. It just doesn’t ring true. It’s too easy. If it doesn’t make sense, just chalk it up to God’s mystique. It’s like a kid asking, “How does Santa deliver presents to every child in the world – except the Jews and Muslims 😉 – in one night? And how does he fit down the chimney?” And we, the parents, say, “I don’t know! He’s magic! It’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?” Yep, the magic pretty much covers everything that can’t be logically explained. Doesn’t work for me.

      Here’s a deconstruction of the argument that God has always existed:

      The Cosmological Argument

      1. Everything that exists must have a cause.

      2. The universe must have a cause (from 1).

      3. Nothing can be the cause of itself.

      4. The universe cannot be the cause of itself (from 3).

      5. Something outside the universe must have caused the universe (from 2 & 4).

      6. God is the only thing that is outside of the universe.

      7. God caused the universe (from 5 & 6).

      8. God exists.

      FLAW 1: can be crudely put: Who caused God? The Cosmological Argument is a prime example of the Fallacy of Passing the Buck: invoking God to solve some problem, but then leaving unanswered that very same problem when applied to God himself. The proponent of the Cosmological Argument must admit a contradiction to either his first premise — and say that though God exists, he doesn’t have a cause — or else a contradiction to his third premise — and say that God is self-caused. Either way, the theist is saying that his premises have at least one exception, but is not explaining why God must be the unique exception, otherwise than asserting his unique mystery (the Fallacy of Using One Mystery To Pseudo-Explain Another). Once you admit of exceptions, you can ask why the universe itself, which is also unique, can’t be the exception. The universe itself can either exist without a cause, or else can be self-caused . Since the buck has to stop somewhere, why not with the universe?

      FLAW 2: The notion of “cause” is by no means clear, but our best definition is a relation that holds between events that are connected by physical laws. Knocking the vase off the table caused it to crash to the floor; smoking three packs a day caused his lung cancer. To apply this concept to the universe itself is to misuse the concept of cause, extending it into a realm in which we have no idea how to use it. This line of skeptical reasoning, based on the incoherent demands we make of the concept of cause, was developed by David Hume.

      COMMENT: The Cosmological Argument, like the Argument from the Big Bang, and The Argument from the Intelligibility of the Universe, are expressions of our cosmic befuddlement at the question: why is there something rather than nothing? The late philosopher Sydney Morgenbesser had a classic response to this question: “And if there were nothing? You’d still be complaining!”

  5. Addie
    June 3, 2011 at 1:18 pm #

    Lisa, as I said I didnt post it up for a debate… I just added what I believed, thats all.

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