The Instigator
Zerosmelt
Con (against)
Winning
38 Points
The Contender
believer_720
Pro (for)
Losing
30 Points

What is the purpose of God?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/10/2008 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,626 times Debate No: 4645
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (33)
Votes (20)

 

Zerosmelt

Con

I thought i would open another discussion with believer 720.

We'll maintain this as merely a discussion as well b/c the topic is a question. I'll say that I am Con because I disagree with God in general.

Now, I'll let you answer a few questions that I haven't been able to answer on my own.

What is the purpose of God's existence?
Is His life meaningless?
What is the purpose of existence of any sort?

If my opponent is interested, I believe that religion has nothing more to say about this than science does.

I can't make an argument until I get one from you, so that's all I have to say for now.
believer_720

Pro

What is the purpose of God's existence?
Is His life meaningless?
What is the purpose of existence of any sort?

1. We don't know. How could we? We can hardly figure out the purpose of our own existence, let alone a god's.

2. Again, there's no way to know. Why would it matter to us if his life is meaningless? What if his life gains meaning through us? How can this be proven or disproven?

3. I'll answer your question with another question. Why does existence of any sort need a purpose? And if there was purpose to it, how could anyone possibly find out?

That's it for now.
Debate Round No. 1
Zerosmelt

Con

Fair enough.

~We can never know the purpose of God's existence, assuming He exists.

~We also cannot know if his life is meaningless.

I cannot argue with this. I can assert however, that these statements, if true, prove that religion has nothing more to say about this than science does.

I will now ask people to consider the following, if for nothing else than pure amusement.
Some existentialists claim that there are only 4 kinds of things we, as beings, can do. (not including suicide.)

1.) Necessary actions for existence: Eating, Breathing, etc...
2.) Actions which distract us from realizing/contemplating the absurdity of our existence: Watching TV, Listening/Making Music, Painting, Meditation, etc...
3.) Actions that [falsely] justify the absurdity of our existence: competition, games, sports, war, debates, belittling others, religious belief etc...
4.) Realizing and contemplating the absurdity of our existence.

obviously you can have any possible mixture of the 4 as well.

Actions is category 3 are existential justifications. This is the realm of the Ego. People do things to prove (to themselves and to others) that they are better than other people. Everyone is insecure about how absurd their existence is but if they can prove that they are better than someone else then they can know that their existence might be absurd but at least its not as absurd as whoever they have proven themselves to be "better" than.

Why is existence absurd you may ask. B/c it is so bizarre that anything exists at all. If God exists then His existence is equally bizarre. Given this, what kinds of things does God do? If you are God, #1 obviously doesn't apply. Lets look at 2-4.

Re: 2.) You are omnipotent. What better way to distract yourself from the absurdity of your own existence than to create an entire world of beings and get mixed up in their affairs, demand things of them, change your mind, and laugh while they burn in Hell.
Re: 3.) What better way to justify your absurd existence then to create a world full of beings who are inferior to you, and dictate their lives.
Re: 4.) One can only imagine how much time God spends doing this... an eternity perchance? Perhaps he's too busy doing this and that's why he never answers anyone's prayers.

All joking aside my opponent has asked me, "Why would it matter to us if His life is meaningless?" this is an amazing question to ask if not psychotic. How could it not matter? The fact that you could even ask this shows me that deep down you probably don't really even believe in God. Imagine the state of Humanity if somehow we actually proved that God exists and that His life is meaningless. Humanity would crumble. Just imagine if at church it was preached that, "Yes, God is real, but He is utterly meaningless." At least with atheism people are free to put meaning into their lives. If God existed and His life was meaningless it would be intrinsically impossible for anyone's life to have any sort of meaning.

Re: a.)" Why does existence of any sort need a purpose?"
b.) "And if there was purpose to it, how could anyone possibly find out?"

a.) Existence doesn't need a purpose, that's not the issue. The issue is that nearly all of humanity is betting that there is a purpose (whether it be secular or religious) If purpose was impossible, in order to maintain the status of humanity, everyone would have to be ignorant to that fact. (Perhaps this is why God hasn't revealed Himself to us.)
b.) It is arguable that we could feel the purpose to life since it causes a feeling. Of coarse that doesn't mean that purpose is objective or written in stone high in the sky.

that was awfully fun, i look forward to your reply.
:P
believer_720

Pro

"Re: 2.) You are omnipotent. What better way to distract yourself from the absurdity of your own existence than to create an entire world of beings and get mixed up in their affairs, demand things of them, change your mind, and laugh while they burn in Hell.
Re: 3.) What better way to justify your absurd existence then to create a world full of beings who are inferior to you, and dictate their lives.
Re: 4.) One can only imagine how much time God spends doing this... an eternity perchance? Perhaps he's too busy doing this and that's why he never answers anyone's prayers."

Wrong. Almost all of it. First of all, your representation on God is completely mistaken. And it seems a lot of your points are pretty dependant on that incorrect view. If you were to create a child, there's a vast chance you would have an unconditional love, and you would do things to make that child a better person in the end, even if that means dicipline. If you were to put yourself in God's shoes, the same logic would apply.

As for your number 3, that logic can work with parenting, save that one flaw you've made at the end of that statement. Compare yourself a toddler. Wouldn't you consider that being inferior to yourself? God doesn't dictate lives any more that a parent does for their child. He has a large say in what they can and can't do, but ultimately, the child still has free will. If God dictated the lives of humans, God wouldn't let you make this argument. Isn't that true?

I've already disproved this by disproving your view on how God works. God does not dictate our lives. If a child gets in trouble, there are times where the parent will not fix it right away, so the child can learn and grow through that experience. God uses trouble to grow us. And there's tons of proof of this in the bible. Now, I haven't read too much into the bible myself (just Genesis), but that's all I need. Surely you've heard of the story of Joseph. I think there was a TV show about it, the guy with the 'technicolor coat?'

Anyway, I'll sum up the story. Joseph is one of I think 12 brothers. He gets a 7 colored coat from his father. Other brothers are jealous. Sell Joseph to slavery in Egypt. Joseph sent to prison for a long time (unclear on the specifics). Pharoh has a dream. Joseph interprets it as God giving Egypt 7 years of good crops, then 7 years of famine. Joseph suggests collecting 1/5 of the crops harvested the first 7 years, so there is enough food for the 7 years to come. Egypt does this, and it seems to work. When the famine strikes, the people of Egypt do not starve, and other cities come to buy food from Egypt. Egypt is successful, Joseph is given great power in Egypt, his power second only to the Pharoh. Meanwhile, in Joseph's home town, his family is starving. Joseph tests them and messes with them first, out of anger, ends up giving them enough grain to eat. They don't die.

There's my example. I'm sure Joseph prayed that God would free him, but he didn't. And see how well everything turned out for him?

"All joking aside my opponent has asked me, "Why would it matter to us if His life is meaningless?" this is an amazing question to ask if not psychotic. How could it not matter? The fact that you could even ask this shows me that deep down you probably don't really even believe in God. Imagine the state of Humanity if somehow we actually proved that God exists and that His life is meaningless. Humanity would crumble. Just imagine if at church it was preached that, "Yes, God is real, but He is utterly meaningless." At least with atheism people are free to put meaning into their lives. If God existed and His life was meaningless it would be intrinsically impossible for anyone's life to have any sort of meaning. "

It looks like I got a bit confused on this one. As you can surely tell, God's life is not meaningless to the people that believe in him. That much is obvious. What I was getting at was, if God's life was meaningless to himself, why would that matter?

"a.) Existence doesn't need a purpose, that's not the issue. "

Then how can I answer the question you asked about why God exists?

You're right, this is fun. =D
Debate Round No. 2
Zerosmelt

Con

OK my opponent spent a good deal of his debate trying to prove that god does not dictate us. It doesn't matter at all whether god dictates us or not. The sheer fact that God is superior to us would provide Him with justification for His absurd existence. In this way He could feel superior to us, b/c he is. I guess my opponent could purport that god isn't superior to us but that isn't how i define god. nor is it the standard.

my opponent compares god's relationship to us with that of a parents relationship with it's child. I agree whole heartedly, and an existentialist would claim that children completely serve the purpose of existential distraction (2) and justification (3) for their parents. What other reason to have children then to distract yourself from the absurdity of your existence and to justify your absurd existence?

I could spend the rest of this argument picking apart everything my opponent has said like
"God uses trouble to grow us." this clearly shows that god is dictating us in some way, If he's using anything to change us in anyway then he is dictating us to a degree. but for me to even go into that is totally unnecessary b/c as i stated above god doesn't even need to dictate us to be using us for His own twisted form of existential justification.

for the next part I think it would be best to clearly define two terms, objective and subjective.
These two words have a few different meanings but I concerned with a specific meaning for each so i will choose these definitions.

objective;
1 dealing with things external to the mind rather than with thoughts or feelings
2 existing independent of thought or an observer as part of reality.
3 having actual existence or reality
4 not influenced by personal feelings, or interpretations.

subjective:
1 proceeding from or taking place in a person's mind rather than the external world
2 existing in the mind, as opposed to the objective.
3 relating to or of the nature of an object as it is known in the mind as distinct from a thing in itself.

When i was inferring that god is meaningless i meant in an objective sense. That is that He actually is meaningless, regardless of whether people think he has meaning or not. if he is meaningless then he just is meaningless. if people subjectively believe that he isn't then they are just wrong.

If god's life was meaningless to himself then it would be objectively meaningless. That is meaningless in actuality. The reason this would matter to us is b.c everyone who believes in God would be wrong/delusion if they believed he had any sort of meaning. They could subjectively believe that He wasn't meaningless, but they would be wrong. There would be no meaning there. B.c people derive their meaning from god they would have to admit that they are also meaningless. Doing this would cause society to fall apart.
The only way to get out of this problem is if meaning exists outside of and indepentantly from god. that is to say that we wouldn't rely on God for meaning. We could have meaning even if God doesn't. Of coarse its very difficult to imagine this given that we are assuming that He actually exists. My opponent would surely be hard pressed to prove that if God exists we can have meaning while He doesn't.

"Then how can I answer the question you asked about why God exists?"

i never said you could.

Since we aren't actually debating anything, that is that i am not actually trying to prove that god is meaningless, i'm just discussing the topic. I will ask people to vote for whoever had the more insightful arguments.

thanks believer.
believer_720

Pro

believer_720 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
33 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Zerosmelt 8 years ago
Zerosmelt
i do understand what you are talking about..

i'm trying to explain to you that what you are talking about is not what im talking about.
Posted by sadolite 8 years ago
sadolite
Zeros, Kinda like you can't understand what I am talking about? I assume you are addressing me.
Posted by Zerosmelt 8 years ago
Zerosmelt
i guess u just can't or won't understand what i'm talking about.
Posted by sadolite 8 years ago
sadolite
zeros, If you don't believe in God why would one even care to ask Gods purpose. God would have no purpose to those who don't believe in God. All people who truly believe in God know the purpose of God otherwise they wouldn't believe in God. It isn't rocket science like many people would make the subject of God out to be. You ether believe and know Gods purpose or you don't in my opinion.
Posted by Zerosmelt 8 years ago
Zerosmelt
what is your position on gods purpose... you never made any claims that he had a purpose.

Atheism does not assert that god doesn't have a purpose. Atheism hold that god does not exist.

Sadolite there is a huge difference to be made between god having purpose and meaning to you, and god just have objective meaning. I don't care if god provides you or other people who believe in him with meaning. I'm talking about God himself having meaning objectively and independently from you. And if god can't have meaning independently of humans how can he be all powerful? Atheists would do not derive purpose and meaning from god, this is true. But they doesn't make any claim about a possible god's objective purpose?

The burden of proof is on the theists since they created the notion of god.
Posted by sadolite 8 years ago
sadolite
Sorry it took so long to respond Jamcke, I could not find anything in the following links that completely discounts my interpretation of gods purpose in any of these links. although one of them did mention my interpretation of god as one of his purposes with many others. Atheism goes without saying, god has no purpose and I hope those people are right. the same goes for any other religion that rejects the notion of a god. I reaffirm my position on gods purpose although they are are not the only purposes of god, they are the ones that are the most important in my opinion.
Posted by Zerosmelt 8 years ago
Zerosmelt
If anyone voting pro could provide an explanation for why Pro has won this argument i would love to hear it....

Remember in a debate you are supposed to vote for who has the better argument, not for whatever you happen to believe.
Pro didn't even respond to my argument so how could his argument be superior to mine??

I beg you to enlighten me b/c i am clearly overlooking something.

I have no doubt that there are people here who simply hold "god" to be too dear to let a debate about His meaninglessness
turn out against His favor.
Posted by Jamcke 8 years ago
Jamcke
Disregard "though". Sorry about the typo.
Posted by Jamcke 8 years ago
Jamcke
I find it laughable that your still referring to "what God's purpose is" after the last several comments. I also find it laughable that you require me to do your research for you, however it's really no trouble so I give you a couple links to get you started.

Though I rarely cite wikipedia, but in your case this will be a sufficient starting point.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

http://en.wikipedia.org...

http://en.wikipedia.org...

http://en.wikipedia.org...
Posted by sadolite 8 years ago
sadolite
Jamcke, Maybe you can lead me to a link that shows that these other religions are vastly different in the interpretation of what Gods purpose is.
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Vote Placed by JBlake 8 years ago
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