A possible God's possible purpose and nature (The nature of a \'Creator\')

by dhw, Wednesday, May 26, 2021, 12:41 (493 days ago)

The article “Milky Way has a twin” raised some questions which might possibly take us into areas we have touched on rather than explored. It may well be that we shan’t make any further progress on the two subjects that form the heading, but I’ll set the ball rolling and we’ll see where it goes.

DAVID: This tells us a galaxy like ours exists and there must be others, and they could contain Earths. It doesn't disturb me if God is sponsoring life/humans in many places.

dhw: If God exists, I’d find it a bit strange that he would confine his interests to a single planet, let alone a single species plus food supply. One can’t help asking why else he would create the billions of galaxies. On the other hand, the more galaxies there are, the more Earths there will be. [Slightly edited here:] And the more Earths there are, the greater the chances of life eventually emerging in its simplest forms (see "extremophiles") and of simple forms starting the process of cooperation which eventually leads to evolution as we know it. But don’t get me wrong: I am still stuck on my fence! :-)

DAVID: That's OK. We agree multiple Earths are possible, even probable.

We do. And if we then speculate on what forms that life might take, we will be confronted by a whole raft of questions. For instance, the subject of a possible God’s purpose immediately springs to mind. If life elsewhere is limited to microbes, what would be the point? A planetful of nothing but bacteria, forever eating whatever there is to be eaten, doesn’t sound like much of a purpose. But – a side issue here – it would certainly strengthen the case for abiogenesis: if conditions were right, the necessary materials would automatically form themselves into primitive life, and perhaps in some cases primitive life would evolve into more complex life. No need for your God. However, we need not discuss that here (you will inevitably and understandably still opt for design), since our subject is going to be your God’s possible purpose and nature, not his existence.

If you believe that God did it all, and there are other Earths with other life forms, the less likely it becomes that we Earthlings are his focal point. Away goes the argument that Earth is special and we were your God’s one and only purpose. “Purpose” has always been a major issue between us. Even as an agnostic, I find it impossible to even think about your God without wondering why he would have created life (including humans, of course), and what this creation tells us about the nature of the creator. Our starting point, then, is the possibility of life elsewhere, and why it doesn’t “disturb” you, despite your belief that we are your God’s one and only purpose for creating the universe. However, for good measure, I will also add a factor which we have never included in our discussions, and that is your belief in an afterlife. That too raises the question why. What aspects of your God’s purpose and/or nature do you think an afterlife might reflect?

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