Monday, May 9, 2011

God vs. Man's Definitions of God

Man’s definitions of God are simply that: man’s definitions. God has not handed mankind a definition of himself *, rather definitions of God all originate from people like you and I. When a person attempts to define God, he usually does so based on what he feels God would be like. It was critical for me to realize that the definition of God I grew up with was the random result of the people I happened to grow up with, and growing up with different people would have likely meant a different definition of God. Since my definition of God was created by people and was a random inheritance, I realized that I currently had no reason to view other’s definitions as less valid.

* Christians might argue that God has handed us a definition, the Bible. But it is men whose hands wrote the Bible and men who claimed God inspired the words. It is a matter of Faith to believe man’s claim that God inspired the words, but nonetheless the Bible comes to us from men and is endorsed by men.

I realized that a true search for the most valid definition of God mustn’t be confined within randomly inherited boundaries. In searching I quickly discovered there are innumerable schools of thought, not enough time to study even 1% of what’s out there, and no way to absolutely know which is most valid. Regardless of how much searching I do, any conclusions I reach will simply be my best guess, improvable and debatable, heavily influenced by what I’m exposed to and what resonates with me at various times. Ultimately, the definition of God I arrive at will be, as with my upbringing, random. I will escape randomness only to return to randomness. The difference is that this new view will be very personalized for myself, and will sit well with me instead of causing anguish.

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