Belief is convenient
I was doing some thinking (dangerous, I know) about the reasons to believe in god, religion, Christ, zoroaster, Iluvatar, et cetera. So I did a web search on "why believe in religion" and I came up with the following link (among others):
Ten Reasons to Believe
My reading of this confirms my own belief(!) that people believe in god or religion or whatever just because it's convenient:
Believing in a deity or religion answers the tough questions about the universe we don't know the answers to yet, and if you keep asking "why" to everything, eventually you can just say "because god made it like that", and that silences all further questions. Of course that answer just wraps up all the mystery into one big mystery, but you're supposed to be happy with that Mystery. Very convenient to have all the mysteries wrapped up in a mystery you're not allowed to question.
Believing in a deity as the moral arbiter of the universe means you don't have to take responsibility for determining what's moral or not. It's already written down in the "Moral First Aid Manual" for you. No thought involved. Very convenient.
Almost everyone inherits their religious beliefs from their parents. No thought involved there either. "Here, believe this"... "OK, whatever you say"... Also convenient.
Believing in the goodness of a deity means you don't have to worry about evil in the world, since it all serves the deity's purpose. "Why did this horrible thing happen to me?" ... "It was God's will" ... "Oh, OK then, there must be a good reason for it, because the world would just be too awful otherwise". Convenience.
I also found interesting the writer's view that even agnosticism requiring faith. The statement is made: "there is no proof that the existence of god is unknowable." Does anyone want to take on that particular statement?
Anyway, just food for thought on this Friday morning (I basically didn't want to start working yet today)
- Unfortunately the relevant link - http://www.gospelcom.net/rbc/rtb/ - is no longer active. However, this pdf file is probably what the writer of this article was critiquing: 10 Reasons To Believe In The Existence Of God
- Editor's note: It is my view that unknowability is implicit in the very characterization of god as used by believers. Anything unexplainable about a supreme being is explained away with "god is beyond human understanding.."