Mostly, no. I find the idea of a personal God troubling. I find the idea of a personal God troubling because of suffering: why do people suffer so much? And, if God is more or less responsible for the world and all in it, why would god allow suffering to be so prevalent?
There’s this great concept, Theodicy, which attempts to reconcile “traditional divine characteristics of omnibenevolence, omnipotence, and omniscience, in either their absolute or relative form, with the occurrence of evil or suffering in the world” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theodicy). Leibnitz attempted to reconcile the goodness of god with the existence of evil: for me, any answer is unsatisfactory.
The concepts of God as “all-good/kind,” “all-powerful,” and “all-knowing” don’t hold much water for me, either. BEcause if someone could be able to end suffering, it would be god – so either god could not, or does not (either option is troubling to me).
I do sometimes find myself wishing that I believed in a personal God, or wishing that I found the idea of a personal God comforting. I do sometimes wish that God could be as near and as comforting as an old flannel shirt. It’s an idea that comes up empty for me.
- Probably no prayer at public meetings - April 28, 2014
- The idea of a personal God is troubling - March 10, 2014
- Ethical spending: Eat your vegetables! - October 3, 2013
- Keep food prayers short! - September 3, 2013
- How would atheist chaplains be ordained? - August 26, 2013
- Evil exists because we allow it - August 19, 2013
- The Second Coming induces too much fear - August 5, 2013
- Government is meant to get in man’s way - June 24, 2013
- If we cared about where our “stuff” came from, the world be profoundly different - June 10, 2013
- Stewardship is maintaining what you’ve been given - May 14, 2013