in TV and radio debates, and online chats about the Abrahamic religions, the
faithful, sensing that the position of defending the preposterous claims in
the books of scripture is untenable, retreat back to a favourite chestnut. A
smoke grenade gets thrown in to the discussion to confuse the arguments
against existing illogical theology, and the statement gets voiced "You
cannot prove God does not exist".
The word God in the argument is expressed in an all-encompassing manner in order to move the debate away from the irrational scriptural explanations of three specific Abrahamic versions of God, being Yahweh, God and Allah, and towards a noun that can be used to explain all issues that scientific endeavour has not yet found rational answers to.
For example, we know the current instance of this particular universe began from a phenomenon now referred to as the ‘Big Bang’; but science is still trying to discover what caused the Big Bang. Theology has no such problem, it simply moves the goal post backward from the Garden of Eden, parks it behind the Big Bang, and declares, "there you go; God did it".
It is true, if the term God is being used to describe whatever phenomenon caused this specific instance of a universe to exist, be it inert or animate, and that the existence of this specific universe could be intentional, accidental, or an unintended by product of some other far grander process, then there has to be a ‘God’ because the term ‘God’ is now being left blank, reserved for future clarification, in order to cover whatever we may find out about the origins of our Universe in the years to come. But in this, the term ‘God’ is definitely not being used to identify any particular form of the concept of deity that has already been suggested by man to date; including Yahweh and Allah.
If we are going to take the term ‘God’ in the statement, "You cannot prove God does not exist", to be making specific reference to the Abrahamic God; then, quite categorically we can say it definitely does not exist, because the literature which contains the description of this particular character is complete, man made, Iron Age poppycock!
The next defence of God comes from the claim that ‘Creatio ex nihilo’ is considered by religion to be impossible, and creation then, by default, needs a creator. ‘Creatio ex nihilo’ is merely a term used to describe the moment in time and space that science has not yet made specific progress of investigation on, being the moments just before the big bang. The lack of progress is due to our current inability to view time past this point. By contrast the religious view of ‘creatio ex deo’ substitutes ‘creation from nothing’ for ‘creation by God’.
The fact that the term ex nihilo has been used to label this moment in time, does not in any way describe that moment; we cannot say that ‘nothing’ existed before the big bang because, at present, we have not been able to investigate anything beyond the big bang. Theology claims creation from nothing is inconceivable, but is it not just as difficult to conceive of ‘Nothing’? What is ‘Nothing’; is ‘Nothing’ even at all possible? Only religion makes the claim, on its basis that creation from nothing is impossible, that it "knows" what happened before the big bang. But we are all bemused as to how religion knows this?
That said, and accepting that the supporters of the three Abrahamic faiths believe ex nihilo to be impossible, how does Judaism, Christianity and Islam make the link from ex nihilo creation being impossible, to the fictitious deity known as Yahweh, God and Allah from the Torah, Holy Bible and the Koran being then proved to be factual by default? We could just as easily claim a link between the impossibility of ex nihilo and the fictitious deity called Ouranos, the Grandfather of Zeus from the Greek Theogony being then proved to be factual by default.
The Theogony which claims:
From the Chaos of the beginning was formed Gaia (earth) along with Tartaros (underworld). Gaia gave birth to Ouranos (sky) from herself and Ouranos became the first ruler of the universe. Gaia then gave birth to the Titans and the Titanides, but they were all trapped inside Gaia because Ouranos laid so tightly to Gaia that there was no space between the sky and the earth for them to exist in.
Cronos, one of the Titans receives a sickle from Gaia, who is angry with Ouranos for banishing her first children (the Hundred Handers and the Cyclopes) to Tartaros. Cronos uses the sickle to sever the genitals of his father Ouranos and throws them in to the sea. Ouranos, racked with pain, rises upward and resides high in the ether, creating space between earth and sky into which the Titans and the Titanides move and live; they release their brothers from Tartaros and all live together on earth under the rule of Cronos who becomes the second ruler of the universe after his father’s banishment high up in the ether.
Cronos then takes for his wife Rhea; but fearing his future offspring might one day rise against him, he swallows all his children from Rhea. Rhea eventually hides one of her new born children from Cronos, who is called Zeus. Zeus later challenges Cronos and defeats him to become the third ruler of the universe; Zeus then creates man to inhabit the earth, while the gods and goddesses inhabit mount Olympus.
This story is every bit as feasible, or ridiculous as it happens, as the Torah, Old Testament and Koran.
In a discussion group on the existence/non existence of a god the following was posted in response to the above, and it is now a common place modern day retort to such arguments: "God is a metaphysical concept not an empirical one". In this, modern day theist apologists seem to be describing a deity which is not only unknowable, in which case how can they possibly know such a thing exists, but is also completely inert and redundant in the area of creation - in which case, what is its purpose?
Like the god/gods of the theists and deists, this ‘metaphysical’ version of a god is also a man made concept. True, it is neither provable nor disprovable, but then statements that are neither provable nor disprovable are two a penny and as such worthless to any discussion. Given just ten minutes of thinking time one could create hundreds of such entities! Here is one by way of an example: ‘we all live in a personal universe, our own living bubble where everyone else dies, but we never do. Since I see other people dying, but I am still alive, this could be correct’. This is complete bunkum of course, because I just made it up, but can it be proved to be wrong? Or put another way, the only thing required to make it a valid theology, is faith, and blind faith at that!