Does God really exist? Fact Finding
“To myself I am only a child playing on the beach, while vast oceans of truth lie undiscovered before me” ― Isaac Newton
What does Truth mean?
Truth is that which is in accordance with the fact or reality. Example: RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the North Atlantic Ocean after colliding with an iceberg in 15 April 1912. The sinking resulted in the loss of more than 1,500 passengers and crew. This is the fact or reality where there were no existence of Jack and Rose as members of different social classes who fall in love aboard the ship during its ill-fated maiden voyage shown in the film Titanic.
Considerations in Finding the Truth
1. Law of Non-Contradiction
Law of Non-Contradiction states that contradictory statements cannot both be true in the same sense at the same time, e.g. the two propositions "There is God" and "There is no God" can’t both be true. In turn, you cannot say that both of them are false. Therefore, one of them must be true and the another is false.
Arguably three significant versions of the principles of non-contradiction are found in Aristotle's Metaphysics i.e.
i) Ontological-Relates to Existence or Reality: "It is impossible that the same thing belong and not belong to the same thing at the same time and in the same respect.",
ii) Psychological- Relates to Mind and Behavior: "No one can believe that the same thing can (at the same time) be and not be." and lastly
iii) Logical-Relates to Reasoning: " The most certain of all basic principles is that contradictory propositions are not true simultaneously."
According to Aristotle, the principle of non-contradiction is a principle of scientific inquiry, reasoning and communication that we cannot do without.
Heliocentrism VS Geocentrism -An Example of Non-Contradiction
Heliocentrism is the astronomical model that places the sun at the center of the Solar family around which the Earth and planets revolve. The word comes from the Greek helios "sun" and kentron "center". In contrast, the Geocentric model also known as Ptolemaic system, is the hypothesis where Earth is at the orbital center of all celestial bodies.
Planetary system, the journey of this fact finding history was far long. Almost all ancient people believed in Geocentric model and ignored heliocentrism for many years. The contradictory has come to an end by gradually developing ideas and increasing knowledge of the cosmological neighborhood over thousands of years.
For example, in the 9th Century BC, Indian Philosopher Yajnavalkya wrote in his book that the sun strings these worlds – the earth, the planets, the atmosphere – to himself on a thread which is one of the first recorded references to heliocentrism. But those theories attracted a little attention of the people at that time and the majority continued to belief in Geocentrism.
In the 5th Century BC, according to Pythagorean philosopher Philolaus, the Earth and the planets revolve around a central fire which was not the sun. The theory was an alternative to Geocentrism and approximately related to the Heliocentric model. But in the 4th Century BC, Pleto and his student Aristotol dismissed the theory and advocated Geocentrism. According to Aristotol, the Earth is at the center of the universe and all other heavenly bodies rotate around the Earth. They were the most influential philosophers and people continued to believe in them.
In the 3rd Century BC, Aristarchus of Samos proposed a model which placed the Sun at the center of the universe with the Earth revolving around it. He was influenced by Philolaus, but he described the model more accurately by putting the "central fire" with the Sun, and the other planets in their correct order of distance around the Sun. Unfortunately there were no original text of his argument; he was referenced by Archimedes in the book “The Sand Reckoner” stating that the fixed stars and the Sun remain unmoved, that the Earth revolves about the sun on the circumference of a circle, the sun lying in the middle of the Floor, and that the sphere of the fixed stars, situated about the same center as the Sun.
However, Geocentrism, the basis of which was established by the time of Aristotle, was finally standardized with comprehensive works by Ptolemaeus in the 2nd Century AD. Ptolemy's model, like those of his predecessors, was geocentric and was almost universally accepted until the appearance of simpler heliocentric model during the time of scientific revolution.
In the 16th Century AD, Copernicus contributed greatly in astronomy by describing the spheres revolving about the sun as their midpoint, and therefore the sun is the center of the universe which he delayed to publish from fear of criticism. His radically shift from a geocentric to a heliocentric cosmology which was a serious blow to Aristotle's science.
In the 16th Century AD, Galileo was the first who discovered physical details about the individual bodies of the solar system inconsistently with that of Ptolemaeus. However, Roman Inquisition concluded his heliocentrism as false and contrary to scripture, placing works on the index of banned books advocating the precious Copernican system and forbidding Galileo from advocating heliocentrism. Even, he was forced to recant, and spent the last nine years of his life under house.
In the 17th Century AD, Kepler attempted to find the true path of the planets claiming that the sun itself and not any imaginary point near the sun as in the Copernican system is the point where all the planes of the eccentrics of the planets intersect. He realized that planets traveled in ellipses and there is an invisible line joining the sun with a planet sweeps out equal areas during equal intervals of time.
Finally truth has exposed after a long controversial journey of development of theories and ideas of the existing solar system as George Washington said that truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light. Another quotation can be appropriate to conclude, “Plato is my friend, Aristotle is my friend, but my greatest friend is truth.” -Issac Newton
2. Sleeping Truth –Contradictory to Science
Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere. -Albert Einstein
[Note: Imagination of undiscovered truth is an example of high intelligence where imagination of something non-existence is an example of stupidity.]
Science is the logical explanation of nature. Acceptance after scientific proof is good but depending only on science may limit your world of imagination. The journey of scientific revolution is endless. Ancient time to modern age, people experience a great phenomena of scientific revolution. But at the same time, we should bear up in mind that this modern age will be ancient one day. We are just passing a stage of scientific revolution. Who knows, today's imagination may have the reality which is going to be exposed tomorrow.
Vinchi’s Sketch –An Example of Imagination
Leonardo da Vinci is recognized for his enormous mental power of imagination, even centuries ahead of time. He sketched a vertical flying machine in 1493, 450 years earlier than an actual helicopter would take to the air.
The word helicopter’s origin is found in Leonardo da Vinci’s qoute, "I say that this instrument made with a helix and is well made, that is to say, of flaxed linen of which one has closed the pores with starch and is turned with a great speed, the said helix is able to make a screw in the air and to climb high." The helix he mentioned is a Greek word meaning "spiral" or "twist" which was combined later with another Greek word, pteron, meaning "wing".
At that time, material science and engine development would not allow such a machine to exist and fly where Leonardo was strongly convinced that if man were to accomplish his long desired goal of traveling in the sky above him, it would be by a vertical flying machine. Leonardo da Vinci did not actually build and test that – but his notes and drawings mapped out exactly how the device would operate.
Ancient Heliocentrism –A Movement Awakening Sleeping Truth
As described earlier, in the 9th Century BC, Indian Philosopher Yajnavalkya wrote in his book “Shatapatha Brahmana” that the sun strings these worlds – the earth, the planets, the atmosphere – to himself on a thread which is one of the first recorded references to heliocentrism.
In the 3rd Century BC, Aristarchus of Samos proposed a model which placed the Sun at the center of the universe with the Earth revolving around it. He described the model more accurately by putting the "central fire" with the Sun, and the other planets in their correct order of distance around the Sun.
In the 16th Century AD, Copernicus great contribution in astronomy was his formula where he describes the spheres revolve about the sun as their midpoint, and therefore the sun is the center of the universe. His radically shift from a geocentric to a heliocentric cosmology was a serious blow to Aristotle's science.
In the 16th Century AD, Galileo was the first who discover physical details about the individual bodies of the solar system inconsistently with that of Ptolemaeus. Roman Inquisition concluded his heliocentrism as false and contrary to scripture, placing works on the index of banned books advocating the the precious Copernican system and forbidding Galileo from advocating heliocentrism.
In the 17th Century AD, Kepler attempted to find the true path of the planets claiming that the sun itself and not any imaginary point near the sun as in the Copernican system, is the point where all the planes of the eccentrics of the planets intersect. He realized that planets traveled in ellipses and there is an invisible line joining the sun with a planet sweeps out equal areas during equal intervals of time.
3. Does Quantity matter questioning Truth?
Quantity does not matter when it’s about truth. For Example, in the 4th Century BC, the works based on the geocentric model by two influential Greek philosophers, Plato and his student Aristotle was universally accepted. The wrong astronomical predictions of Ptolemy's geocentric model were used to prepare astrological and astronomical charts for over 1500 years. Over a millennium ancient people assumed that geocentric model was the correct cosmological model.
In the Catholic world prior to Galileo's conflict with the Church, the majority of educated people subscribed to the Aristotelian geocentric view. All of them were absolutely wrong. The fact is, acceptance by majority doesn’t necessarily guarantee any hypothesis or theory to be true.
Lets have another example. Charles Darwin was one of the most influential figures in human evolution theory. By the 1870s the scientific community and much of the general public had accepted evolution as a fact where in the 19th Century, Louis Agassiz rejected the theory stating that there are...absolutely no facts either in the records of geology, or in the history of the past, or in the experience of the present, that can be referred to as proving evolution, or the development of one species from another by selection of any kind whatever.
Where are we going?
Religion is the dictator of one’s way of life. Religion doesn’t necessarily mean believing in God. Believing in God is a classification of Religion. For example, if you ask an atheist, “What is his Religion?” The answer would be disbelieving in God. So, Religion is, in fact, a pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance which in turn controls ones lifestyle.
“A religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to an order of existence.” –Wikipedia
Based on Religions, the entire human beings in the world can be divide into two broad groups. One of them believes in God and the another doesn’t. Although the amount of believers in God is many more than that of non-believers, they are not important-less at all. They also have a great influence in controlling the global culture and society. However, The believers in God can further be classified into different beliefs like Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and so on. According to The World Fact book, the distribution of religions includes Christian 31.50%, Muslim 23.20, Hindu 13.8%, Buddhist 6.77%, Sikh 0.35%, Jewish 0.22%, Baha'i 0.11%, other religions 10.95%, non-religious 9.66%, atheists 2.01%. So, if there is no God, then let different communities do whatever they like. But, if there is God, He is supposed to be The One and Only and there must be a reason of His creation.
George Washington said that it is impossible to account for the creation of the universe without the agency of a Supreme Being. He further said that it is impossible to govern the universe without the aid of a Supreme Being. Isaac Newton said that he who thinks half-halfheartedly will not believe in God; but he who really thinks has to believe in God.
Christianity is the religion based on the believes that there is only one God, but that there are three elements to this one God called “Trinity” i.e. God the Father, God the Son and The Holy Spirit. Christians believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. They also believe that God sent his Son to earth to save humanity from the consequences of its sins. One of the most important concepts in Christianity is that of Jesus giving his life on the Cross (the Crucifixion) and rising from the dead on the third day (the Resurrection).
The resurrection of Jesus is the Christian religious belief that, after being put to death to take the punishment deserved by others for the sins of the entire human beings of the world, Jesus rose again from the dead. Both the death and resurrection of Christ is the foundation of Christian faith. According to apostle Paul if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and our faith is in vain. If Christ has not been raised, our faith is futile.
“Therefore, just as through one man (Adam) sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned…. For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, mush more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ. Therefore as through one-man offense, judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one man’s obedience many will be made righteous”. -Romans 5:12; 17-19
We can find an excellent introduction of Islam in Wikipedia, “Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable and that the purpose of existence is to worship God. Muslims also believe that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith that was revealed many times before through prophets including Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus. They maintain that the previous messages and revelations have been partially misinterpreted or altered over time, but consider the Arabic Qur'an to be both the unaltered and the final revelation of God.Religious concepts and practices include the five pillars of Islam, which are basic concepts and obligatory acts of worship, and following Islamic law, which touches on virtually every aspect of life.”
Muslims believe that Isa (Jesus) son of Mariam (Mary) was a holy prophet with a divine message. The Islamic believe is that Jesus was not crucified and will return to the world at the end of times. Qur'an says in Sura 4:158 "But Allah raised him up to Himself. And Allah is Ever All-Powerful, All-Wise". The Quran further says in Surah An-Nisa 4: 157 "And because of their saying, "We killed Messiah Isa, son of Mariam, the Messenger of Allah", – but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but it appeared so to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts". Furthermore, in Islam, it is believed that when Jesus returns at the end of the world, he will kill the pigs, break the crosses and abolish the Jizya tax.
Santana Dharma is the original name of Hinduism which means eternal. Fundamental Hindu beliefs include the authority of the Vedas (the oldest Indian sacred texts) and the Brahmans (priests); the existence of an enduring soul that transmigrates from one body to another at death (reincarnation); and the law of karma that determines one's destiny both in this life and the next.
Though Hinduism is often considered as being polytheistic, supposedly recognizing as many as 330 million gods, Hindus also believe in a one, all-pervasive Supreme Being—Brahma. Brahma is an entity believed to inhabit every portion of reality and existence throughout the entire universe and is often believed to exist in three separate forms: Brahma—Creator; Vishnu—Preserver; and Shiva—Destroyer. Considering Brahma is everything, Hinduism asserts that everyone is divine. Hindus believe in karma, the law of cause and effect by which each individual creates his own destiny. Hindus believe in soul reincarnation. Every single soul evolves through many births until all karmas have been resolved, and moksha, liberation from the cycle of rebirth, is attained. Thus, the spiritual goal of a Hindu is to become one with Brahma believing that only Brahman exists, nothing else.
A specific belief about God or gods is not considered one of the essentials in Hinduism, which is a major difference between it and monotheistic religions like Christianity and Islam.
Buddhism is not a religion that believing in God rather it’s a teaching of a person named Siddhartha Gotama who at his middle age realized that wealth and luxury did not guarantee happiness, so he explored the different teachings religions and philosophies of the day, to find the key to human happiness. After six years of study and meditation he finally found 'the middle path' and was enlightened. After enlightenment, the Buddha spent the rest of his life teaching the principles of Buddhism — called the Dhamma, or Truth. The word comes from 'budhi', 'to awaken'. One of the Buddhist teachings is that wealth does not guarantee happiness and also wealth is impermanent. The people of every country suffer whether rich or poor, but those who understand Buddhist teachings can find true happiness. Buddhism teaches that the solutions to our problems are within ourselves not outside. The Buddha asked all his followers not to take his word as true, but rather to test the teachings for themselves.
Buddhism agrees with the moral teachings of other religions but Buddhism goes further by providing a long term purpose within our existence, through wisdom and true understanding. That is why Buddhists do not preach and try to convert, only explain if an explanation is sought.
The term atheism comes from the Greek word atheos, meaning godless. Atheos is derived from a, meaning "without," and theos, meaning "deity". According to American Ahiests, an atheist has no religious belief. An Atheist does not believe in a god or gods, or other supernatural entities. The concept of an agency outside of nature with the ability to reach into natural law and control events is supernaturalism, the foundation of any religion. Belief in the existence of that agency is based on faith. An Atheist has no specific belief system. They accept only that which is scientifically verifiable. Since god concepts are unverifiable, they do not accept them.
If we ask an atheist that do they believe in something exists in a human body which we call life, what would they say? If we further ask, what is the size of it? What is the color of it? We can easily realize the existence of life as well as the missing of it in a human body when it is dead. But today’s science has not yet reached that level to provide its details. Scientific evidence is not necessarily needed to prove something’s existence every time.
Considering the rule of non-contradiction, we like to conclude this article putting some questions in front of the audiences.
Is there God? If no. Then Big Bang Theory states that the universe was in a very high density state and then expanded; how a life can be originated from material? You cannot say dark is the source of light. What about Isaac Newton who says that he who thinks half-halfheartedly will not believe in God; but he who really thinks has to believe in God. If you are scientific enough then you must have some respect of him as he is one of the greatest scientists of all time.
If there is God then the next question is Who is the real One. You cannot say that all the believers in God are in the right way or some of them are.
This is not a fundamental article rather is a combination and analysis of information collected from different sources along with the authors personal view in order to send a message or awaken audiences about their religions. The main source of almost all of our information collected was Wikipedia. Side by side we owe to many websites which are truly resourceful.