Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Part III: The God who Cares

The skeptic may look at Christianity and say that it is "Grade-A" bologna because it is only what the person wants to see.  We tend to see the things that we are looking for. Since we grow up in a family that is filled with nurture and support (most people, at least - allowing for unhealthy families) we construct a God that cares.  Freud said as much when he inferred that God is a projection of the infantile need for a 'daddy.'

So do we concede that because we have loving parents t hat we must have projected this onto a God somewhere in order to bring harmony and order to our lives?

And what about the person who just got back from Christmas gatherings with their families and concluded that their family of origin is insane and in need of massive amounts of therapy?  That does kind of throw a wrench in the skeptic's argument.  If we really project our experience with parents onto God, we should envision a divine figure with too much perfume, wears very busy sweaters, and is always asking when we will get a real job.  But that is another blog.  

Now seriously, think of the logic that questions our self-concept of God.  We are suspicious of a God who happens to agree with our need for approval and acceptance.  So what is it that makes this so far-fetched?  Is it because we are suspicious of a God who lines up with what we would want in a God?  Do we think that because the two agree that it must have been manufactured?

If that is the case, then aren't we at least entitled to reverse polarity on that argument and ask, "why wouldn't you expect God to be the sum total of everything you want/need?"  Wouldn't that be the most obvious connection . . . that God would be everything you imagined?  Would we have the same suspicious questions about other, more mundane things?  For example, would we question whether there is something strange about the relationship between us and the sun?  The sun happens to set temperature levels for the seas which powers the wind systems across the globe, provides the necessary process for plants to convert fuel and grow and helps us as humans process key vitamins as well as stay warm.  This contingent relationship is never questioned - no one ever says, "interesting how the sun just HAPPENS to be the perfect complement for the eco-system on earth - I wonder if someone just made it up, it just HAPPENS to be so perfect!"

No, in fact, if we could say anything we might argue that the contingent relationship speaks of something or someone beyond it orchestrating (or creating) it.  

Interesting . . .

What is we looked at the psycho-social needs of humans and the idea of God and in seeing the two as contingent might ask the question . . . " is the complementary nature of God something that makes us suspicious of God or suspicious of God's absence?

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