God and The Weather (Interventionist God…)

‘Belief in a cruel god makes a cruel man’
-Thomas Paine

(I couldn’t get this blog post “right,” not by any measure I could fathom. It’s really 2 distinct concepts slammed together inelegantly. But it’s honest and written with a good intention.)

I don’t believe in an interventionist god…

I know that I am a very small minority. There aren’t many people who purport to believe in god, yet don’t believe in god’s interventions in our affairs – or with nature.

-God does not interfere in the affairs of men.
-God does not control, direct, or mitigate the natural order of the world, including the weather.
-God does not use disease, weather or other things to punish or reward people or countries.
-I distrust people who disagree with my opinion on the 3rd bullet point.

God set it in motion and has given us a large enough brains and toolboxes to work out our own issues. And yet we are not doing what we can to help one another. We have been successful to a point but our own individual and national allegiances stymy our potential. So concentrated we are on smaller issues that we are allowing things to be unfixed that wouldn’t cost us much in time or resources- not really.

I have a huge respect for what we have done as a civilization. Despite crazy nationalism and divergent and bitter religious beliefs, we continue to figure things out and solve complex problems. Our world is improving, becoming smarter, and people in general are suffering less. I think that the world is becoming a better place. As education replaces opinion, I think that our lives will continue to improve.

I look at our brains and our potential and see a positive universe, rather than negative.

This blog is supposed to convey who I am and what I think. I’m not sure what bothers me more: people saying I believe the opposite of what I’ve stated or becoming angry that I disagree with them. I’d hope that recognizing that our opinions diverge is important to everyone. But I’m learning anew with great frequency that the admiration and respect for other people’s opinions tends to shrink dramatically where religion treads. Whereas once I was atheist, I now “believe,” but my belief does not include a clause which allows for a beneficent god to intervene on our individual behalf. I am certain that the cosmos was set into motion by some force, but I don’t believe that the universe can  be made to change course based on human consequences.

I also find it amusing that many people would tell me “You can’t believe that!” As if any religious argument can be presented as a logical buttress for any such proclamation. There are a lot of religions in the world, many practiced by those would insist that their flavor is the only one possible. I don’t tolerate that type of religious exclusion well. The joy of religion is that we can and do select what works for us. Even casual observation of religion at work demonstrates the striking diversity and difference of religious opinion.

Someone once said that you can choose your own opinion, but not your own facts. Our development as a civilization is full of instances where “everyone knew” something that turned out to be false. Experts were put in the spotlight to placate people- right up until they were no longer right.