The "concept" of God is usually defined by a lack of a definition. God is usually said to be unlimited in power, knowledge, and goodness and unknowable to us mere mortals; but these are all traits that are defined by a lack of something.

"God" is not a concept at all because it subsumes no particulars. Unlike a real concept, there is nothing in reality to which one can refer to and say, "That is God." To be unlimited in power, omnipotence, is a contradiction. To be unlimited in goodness, omnibenevolence, is taken without any standard of good. Regarding God, it is said that God is good. What is good? God's will. What characterizes God's will? Goodness. That circle is without substance and meaningless. Some people claim that all these objections are silly because God is simply unknowable. How do they know that God is unknowable?

The notion of God is nothing but a big mixture of contradictions and nothingness. There is no meaning behind the word and no concept to even define.

We view with mirth the ancient Greeks and Egyptians and other peoples with their pantheons of various Gods controlling various aspects of the world. We laugh at contemporaries who claim to have been visited by aliens or seen Bigfoot. Some even laugh and deride those scientists who make claims with only a little evidence in support of their views. But what is truly ridiculous is the people who then turn around and say, "the belief in God is perfectly fine" either because someone they know believes it or because a large portion of the population believes it. Truth is not a social phenomenon. Reality is absolute and can only be understood through reason.

What is disappointing is not so much all of the faithful, but all those who sanction faith in others. To accept without comment this ridiculous self-contradicting life destroying nonsense in one's peers and give it a sort of spiritual relativism sanction, to claim that each can believe whatever he wants, that one spiritual belief is just as valid as another -- that is what perpetuates the evil of faith-based religions and notions.

The belief in God and the acting on that belief is evil. It divorces one's knowledge and actions from reality, with consequences ranging from the trivial (wasting one morning a week) to the disastrous (crusades, having unwanted children, Israelis and Arabs slaughtering each other over a patch of desert, wasting one's entire life working for a purpose not one's own, etc.)

Many people who believe in God view him as a father figure. Like a father, he provides, he sets boundaries, and (like some fathers) he defines what one should do in life. Some, like the Existentialists, claim that without a God life has no meaning and it is "absurd". They view life without God like the life of a toddler without a parent: arbitrary, wandering around in the muck, not knowing what to do or why, with no purpose, no end, and alone and unhappy. But, like all children, believers in God need to grow up. Life as an adult is much more rewarding than life as an infant.

Meaning is epistemological, not metaphysical or intrinsic. Different things have different meanings to different people based on the context of their experiences and goals. Purpose is an individual attribute. When one defines one's own purpose, accomplishing it really means something, as opposed to accomplishing some seemingly random task set by a parent. Self-reliance, when one is responsible for one's own life and lives it as an adult rather than as a parasitic dependant, is one of the most glorious aspects of existence; and finding friendship among one's peers is far more rewarding than with an imaginary friend. All children should strive to give up their imaginary friends and face the world as confident adults, masters of their own lives, without need of psychological crutches.

Copyright 2001 by Jeff Landauer and Joseph Rowlands