Trying to prove the existence of God is like trying to prove the existence of good, bad, acceptance, guilt, joy or any other abstract concept.
Whenever I have encountered someone who asks me to prove the existence of God, invariably they are looking for tangible proof. Something that they can see, hear, touch and smell. In essence, they are looking for something that can be quantified scientifically and eventually examine it under a microscope and test it with sophisticated and advanced methods.
Anyone who believes in God will tell you that their belief is based on faith. Mind you, some who claim to believe in the existence of God are not thoroughly convinced. Their sole reasoning for accepting the idea that there is a God is based on sociological data. In essence, their parents believe in God so they believe in God. Their peers believe in God so they believe in God. They blindly accept the existence of God based on what others have told them.
Anyone that looks at this from the outside would surely not be convinced that the belief is valid because the same could be said for other ideas. Our ancestors believed the earth was flat because their ancestors believed the earth was flat. Our ancestors believed that the earth was the center of the universe and that the sun and stars revolved around it because their ancestors believed the same thing.
To an outsider, this type of faith would be the equivalent of faith in Santa Clause, the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny.
A more logical defense of the reasoning behind why one does or does not accept the existence of an all-powerful God is needed and so one would begin by asking does God exist? I propose that the question in and of itself is flawed. The flaw is that the very reason for asking the question is based on having observed that some people believe in the existence of God and others do not.
There is a flaw in the question as to whether God does or does not exist. If someone were to insist on proof of the existence of God, one should go back to the scientific method and perform the steps in order:
- Ask a Question
- Do Background Research
- Construct a Hypothesis
- Test Your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment
- Analyze Your Data and Draw a Conclusion
- Communicate Your Results
Ask a Question
The question that should be asked is not whether God exists or not but rather if belief in God is justified.
Do Background Research
The background research that could be done in this case is to quantify the number of people that believe in God and those that don’t. The questions to be asked there would be of a personal nature to determine why those that believe in God believe in God and why those that don’t, don’t.
Another part of the background research should involve written documentation related to the subject. The documentation must include authoritative writings on the topic such as the Bible.
Construct a Hypothesis
The next step in the scientific process is to construct a hypothesis. This hypothesis would be either a. Belief in God is justified or b. belief in God is not justified.
Test your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment
Now we come to the experimental phase. This one will involve a personal commitment on the scientist’s part. The experiment would involve actually believing or not believing in God and noting the results. It is important to note that throughout the history of the world there have been millions of people who have believed in God and millions of people who have not believed in God. One could see the impact of the belief or disbelief in their lives over long periods of time. The researcher could take a stance one way or another and note the results. This experiment would have to be a life-long endeavor because the results would have to be measured and quantified over a long enough period in order to have valid data. Now because there have been so many other people who, in the past have made the decision to either believe or not believe, the researcher could look at what those people have reported over their lifetimes by what they have left behind in terms of documents and the impact that they have had on their societies.
Analyze Your Data and Draw a Conclusion
At the end of this experimentation, the researcher should analyze the data and see the results. In this case, the researcher would no longer be physically alive but would have a definite conclusion to this life-long experiment one way or another. The researcher’s hypothesis would be either proved or disproved once their physical lives are ended. This would make perfect sense because if God exists, he would exist outside of our physical reality. Once the researcher reaches the realm where God would exist, the proof would be there. If God does not exist, the proof would be there also.
Communicate Your Results
Since there is no way to communicate your results after your physical exit from this life, the results should be reported during the experimental phase. The researcher should not be alone during the entire research so that those who outlive the researcher can also communicate their observations of the researcher throughout the life of the researcher. The observers would communicate their observations and findings to others.
To conclude, proving or disproving God’s existence is really a moot point. It is only through a life-long commitment in the belief in God or disbelief in God that one could determine the final result at the end of one’s life. Now, it is important to note that the researcher who decides to embark on this quest needs to be fully immersed in the experiment. It is not just a matter of taking a stand and saying “I believe in God” or “I do not believe in God”. The true researcher will get as deep as he or she can into the experiment by learning as much as possible about the topic, exercising the ground rules of the decision that have been set by the available documentation, getting to know the subject of the experiment more intimately and including as many other researchers in on the experiment so that all the data can be constantly compiled and analyzed.
For my part, I have chosen to conduct my experiment by accepting the existence of God. I am in a life-long process of getting to know my subject more intimately, studying the documentation and sharing my findings with other researchers. I expect to receive clear proof one way or another at some point.
Now my decision to choose to believe in God is based on observations of the outcomes of those who came before me that believed and those who did not believe. Based on the results of the lives of those who believed, I feel that there is sufficient evidence to justify the belief and embark on the experiment with a reasonable expectation of what I will receive at the end of the experiment.