Ethics Epistemology Religion Term Paper

Pages: 6 (2442 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 6  ·  Level: College Sophomore  ·  Topic: Mythology - Religion

Religion

This work looks at the concept of religion by first explaining its definition. It argues about whether God really exists and takes the standpoint that He does exist. The argument of this paper is based on this thesis and addresses some of the issues associated with God. It describes two theories that express religion and picks the strongest theory for the rest of the work. It also looks at the controversial issues of God and science. It follows to discuss the nature of God and the conflicts that arise with His interaction with man. The work ends with a conclusion that summarizes the main points captured in the work.

There as many definitions of religion as there are people who try to define it. The functional element of religion is to answer the fundamental needs of people. From the perspective of its content, religion is belief in supernatural entities. It can also be defined from the elements it consists of, which are; ritual, faith and belief. Religion first developed in Europe. This paper discusses religion from the concept of its content. The definition that religion is belief in supernatural beings is important. It gives a platform for argument of whether God is real. This paper discusses the concept of God, and cites reasons why it is important to prove that God exists. It gives arguments for the existence of God and outlines reasons why I believe the argument of Christian theism is strongest. It further proceeds to discuss the foundations of the universe and its origin. The paper also looks at the concept of God and the relation to the issues of morality, evil, science and man's free will. The paper also finally addresses the concept of atheism and the rational argument on the same (Stringer, 2011).

According to philosophy and theology, there are two competing concepts of God. The concepts are neoclassical theism and Christian theism. Neoclassical theism borrows from the life and beliefs of Charles Hartshorne. He is one of the most important philosophers of religion. In his work, he looks at the existence and actuality of God. He says that God's existence is either possible or impossible, and if possible, then necessary. He appreciates that the medieval thinkers tried to discuss the logic of perfection, which is as an attribute of God. He however believes in a logic that is dipolar where he approves of excellent permanence in the sense of steadfastness as an attribute of God. He sees God as the mind and soul of the natural world but as different from creatures. He says that God is omniscient (all knowing) of all things that are knowable but not of the possibilities and events of the future.

Christian theism is the contrast of what neoclassical theism preaches. It however, supports the existence of God but subscribes to an absence of the limitations put forward by neoclassic theorists. Kant says that Christian theism is a relatively affectionate and enthusiastic form of belief. It is the belief in the existence of at least one deity. Christian theism looks at God as the present and personal God who is involved in all that happens in the world. This theory believes that God has revealed himself to His people and there exists a dualistic relationship between God, human beings and the world.

According to these two arguments, it is important to prove the existence of God. The first reason is to accredit meaning to the work of philosophers and theologians. Religion is a very sensitive matter to many people. This is because it is driven by conviction and not knowledge or logic. Many people have gotten into fights and others have lost their lives because of their religious beliefs. Not all human beings share this belief in a supernatural being. Some believe that the concept of God is merely an attempt by human beings to explain what is beyond their control. Others believe that the idea of God is merely an attempt at fiction. The fact that no living person can give tangible evidence that the religion they believe in exists also brings many questions to mind. For many years, there have been claims by various religious groups that theirs is the true religion. All the religious groups believe in some supernatural being called "God." These reasons make it paramount to prove the existence of god.

All the research on the concept of God would be useless if He does not exist. Religion forms a fundamental basis of faith and gives purpose and meaning to the lives of people. Many people believe that there is a reason for their existence and by faith chose to trust that some supreme being (God) must know. The need for stability in the universe puts the psychological well being of humanity on the balance and it is important that people are convinced beyond all doubt, that there is a being (God), who watches everything.

The two arguments above both explain the existence of God and it is important to note that the Christian theism theory preceded the neoclassical theory. It is my opinion that the Christian theism theory holds more water than the neoclassic theory. The first reason for this is that it discusses the logic behind the idea of God and presents a more plausible argument. The theory looks at the attributes of God as omniscient and perfectly good, just and incapable of evil. This presents the idea of a supreme being who I would wish as my God. The theory ascertains that since God is all knowing and perfect, He cannot be associated with evil as his nature is the exact opposite of evil. This presents a more logical argument since it presents clarity in thought that assures peace of mind. The neoclassic theism argues of bipolar logic 'good-good' or 'good-evil', which is unintelligible to an individual who believes in a supreme being characterised as omniscient (Nietzsche, et al. 2008).

The universe refers to all matter and space as a whole. It is sometimes referred to as the totality if existence including planets, stars and galaxies. The physical universe has an underling foundation made of nonzero substance. This substance supports the universe and all matter has some of this substance. The universe evolved from a state of unordered complexity to ordered complexity. The universe is a product of a process of structuring that began with instability of the galaxies billions of years ago. Life arose from this process and brought about the question of evolution by design or chance. Evolution by design proposes a Designer and evolution by chance leaves it to the laws of nature. The idea of evolution by design forms the foundation of the universe because it is impossible that the laws of nature would have ensured the changes that have occurred over time. It is also because the laws of nature must have an author. The state of nature therefore needs a measure of control; otherwise, the universe will spin out of control.

The issue of morality is a point of debate for every individual around the world. This is mainly because it refers to the principles about the difference between right and wrong, and good and bad. God is a supreme being who acts as the highest example of morality. According to the Christian theists, He also expects a high level of morality from the human race. For those who adhere to this theory, God is the measure of standard of what is good and bad. The Bible, which guides the belief of Christian atheists, is the reference point for morality. Philosophers and theologians borrow greatly from this Holy Book to know what is good and what is not. An example is the Ten Commandments, which is a list of dos and don'ts that explains how people should behave. The question of whether it is possible to be moral and not believe in God finds an answer. This is to mean that one cannot subscribe to the concept of morality and completely separate it from the concept of God (Hare, 2009).

The Bible is the dominant influence upon the ideas of God and evil in the Western world. The Bible describes God as omnipotent (all-powerful) and the determinant of what is good and evil. He draws the line on what is acceptable through the Holy Book. God controls all things because of His omnipotent attribute. This then means that God causes both evil and good or in the least, allows them to happen. Bible passages that show that God causes evil to happen would mean that He punishes people for sinning. It would also be possible to say that both good and evil deeds happen because God, as Acts 2: 23 indicates, predestines them. The fact that God is just makes it possible to reconcile God and evil. This means that He is able and has the power to punish evil and reward good. It is however contentious since He still causes people to do evil… [END OF PREVIEW]

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