Saying a god—one that loves that which it has created—would never allow the…
I see the point you’re trying to make, that the sort of believer who’ll resort to that sort of circular logic is beyond reasoning with, but my point is that this is a really shitty way to absolve a god of blame for the crappy world they’ve apparantly put forth.
And yes, this would be a particularly crappy attempt for an all-powerful all-knowing perfectly morally good being. I mean, we eat and breathe through the same tube. Imagine how many lives would be saved the meaningless death from choking on food if we had separate tubes? For natural processes this is pretty bang up, but for someone who’s supposedly perfect? There are a lot of flaws that just seem ameteurish.
Essentially, giving a god a bunch of qualities that let you bypass criticism and objections by pointing to said qualities? Is an incredibly lazy defence, and circular. “God is perfect. How do I know? Well look at the world! Oh all that suffering? That’s by design. How do I know? Because God is perfect!”
I think you almost get my point. I don’t think their logic is circular at all; I think it’s just their argument. Before I go on, I really want you to think in the realm of all religious people and not just the Abrahamic religions (specifically, Christianity, which most atheists have a ridiculous obsession with, and which I think you alluded to when you capitalized “god” in your last quote).
They’re not absolving anything. The premise is that the god in question knows absolutely what they are doing/what they have done/what they will continue doing. You keep pointing out “flaws” of the perfect deity—why would he have us swallow food and drink down the same tube?
My response to that is and has been: how do you know that this is a flaw? Asshole Atheists a lot of the time point out many things that could be fixed about humanity by a just god, and all of these things are “fixable” only under the premise that they are flawed in the first place.
Furthermore, they are considered flawed because they do not benefit or sometimes obstruct the benefit of humanity. You argue, “a just god would have created two tubes so that nobody would choke.” The religious argue not, “All the bad things that happened are justified because my god is perfect.”; the religious argument IS, “Why would a just god want nobody to choke? You are not a just god, so you could not possibly know. But my actual just god has already told me that sometimes I will suffer and that I must have faith despite that.”
Yes, from the perspective of a human, it would be great if nobody choked. But how do you know the good of humanity is rooted in everyone never choking?
In everyone never suffering in general?
Well, there’s no way in hell that you, as a human, could ever know that. An omnipotent, omniscient, just god would absolutely know, however.
As I end this post I want to also address your appointing of pronouns to deities. I feel as an atheist it is easier for me to distinguish why people can feel so strongly about ultimate beings by refraining from giving them human pronounds. Deities are not humans, and I feel subtle nuances like this makes it difficult for atheists to realize this. (Yes, some religious use pronouns, but the ones that do have a way of distinguishing that this pronoun is used specifically when referring to a deity, such as capitalization or ommission of a letter)
(Did I accidentally slip pronouns in somewhere? I specifically try to avoid them when discussing deities who don’t have clearly defined gender. Whoops.)
I do get it though. Admittedly I was being glib. You’re saying that to those believers, what we percieve as flaws are actually intentional and necessary. It’s not a bug, it’s a feature. I just refuse to see that as anything but post hoc rationalization of what the vast vast majority of people recognize as a legitimate problem.
You’re right, I did let my personal biases slip in there when I capitalized “god” but that’s because it’s what I was raised around. I mean, when Ayaan Hirsi Ali writes about Islam, it’s because it’s what she’s experienced. That’s not to say that we don’t also study and discuss other beliefs, but, well, personal biases creep in.
I also don’t think it makes one an asshole to give deferrance to an argument that some of the greatest minds humanity has ever produced have pondered. I know the atheist community has a lot of assholes, and a lot of them are particularly vocal, I just think making thisparticular argument isn’t criteria for that when there are people who are legitimately doing dickish things.