Contradiction of Theism: Worship vs. Helping Others

doctoro
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Contradiction of Theism: Worship vs. Helping Others

I think there is a crucial logical contradiction of ALL world religions (beyond just Christianity).

1. IF God exists and is omni-benevolent (all-good), he posits the golden rule: treat others as you would be treated. Or even better: prevent the suffering of others. If I had no food, shelter, security, etc., I would want others to help me out, hence, I would want others to prevent me from suffering.

2. God asks us to be selfless. Wouldn't God then be selfless too? Was Jesus an example of a selfless being?

3. If God is selfless and wants us to prevent our fellow humans from suffering, then WHY WOULD HE WANT US TO WASTE TIME WORSHIPING HIM?

4. Finally, if God requires worship, that would mean that he needs something. If he needs something; anything at all; if he desires ANYTHING; then he ceases to be God as defined by all religious traditions. God cannot need anything. There is no way to "glorify" a being that is already maximally glorified by his very nature. There's no way to add a finite number to infinity and make it "more" than infinity.

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Thus, there is no point to worship God if he exists, because God would not want us to worship him. Spend your time helping people on Earth that have real needs; because God needs nothing, not even your "glorification" through worship. He's already maximally "glorious" by definition.

Go do community service on Sundays. Don't pray and worship an imaginary being who wouldn't want you to worship him IF he existed.


Strafio
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Even when I did believe in a

Even when I did believe in a God, it didn't make sense to me that he'd want worship. In my opinion, you only want worship if you have certain insecurities that you want massaging.


StMichael
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Quote: 2. God asks us to

Quote:

2. God asks us to be selfless. Wouldn't God then be selfless too? Was Jesus an example of a selfless being?

Yes.

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3. If God is selfless and wants us to prevent our fellow humans from suffering, then WHY WOULD HE WANT US TO WASTE TIME WORSHIPING HIM?

Worship is always an intrinsic good, and it does help others (our prayers bring about good in the communion of saints and in the world). Further, it is the means by which we can effectively help others. [To define terms, by "worship" I assume what you mean is prayer. Worship at church is merely a subset of such prayer.]

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4. Finally, if God requires worship, that would mean that he needs something. If he needs something; anything at all; if he desires ANYTHING; then he ceases to be God as defined by all religious traditions. God cannot need anything. There is no way to "glorify" a being that is already maximally glorified by his very nature. There's no way to add a finite number to infinity and make it "more" than infinity.

No, because God does not require worship for His own sake. He requires worship for our sakes primarily, and for the sake of our fellow men secondarily.

 

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Thus, there is no point to worship God if he exists, because God would not want us to worship him. Spend your time helping people on Earth that have real needs; because God needs nothing, not even your "glorification" through worship. He's already maximally "glorious" by definition.

You would like Saint Vincent de Paul and Blessed Mother Theresa. Good works on earth are a form of worship, because our action pays homage to Jesus Christ in the poorest of the poor. However, I would point out that worship of God in a strict sense, at church and in daily prayer and Eucharistic adoration, forms the strict basis on which we can truly and effectively serve our fellow men. Further, such worship is truly also the center of our goals as human beings, as this uniting to God (achieved in an imperfect way here on earth) is what is true happiness.

 

Yours In Christ, Eternal Wisdom,

StMichael 

Psalm 50(1):8. For behold thou hast loved truth: the uncertain and hidden things of thy wisdom thou hast made manifest to me.


doctoro
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St. Michael, you are the

St. Michael, you are the king of truthiness.


StMichael
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I love Stephen Colbert.

I love Stephen Colbert. Smiling

 

Yours In Christ, Eternal Wisdom,

StMichael 


ShaunPhilly
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If worship is designed for

If worship is designed for us, because it's good for us, then why have a punishment for not doing it?

 How is worship good for us? I don't worship, and I'm quite happy without it.  Have you ever not worshipped a god for a period of time to know the difference?  What if it were possible to live a fulfilled life without a god-belief or worshop of said being?

And even if it were good for us (say, psychologically), that says nothing for the intended target of said prayer.  Taht is, there may be something about the religious action of prayer that is good for us, but that doesn't mean that god exists at all.  Thus, it being good for us is interesting, but perhaps it's not universal.  perhaps worship is not good for many, kind of like how milk is good for many, but some are cery lactose intolerant.   (I guess I'm supernatural-intolerant? Eye-wink ) .

There are many people here who have fulfilled lives without worshipping.  So, unless you can demonstrate that they are lying about being fulfilled, that those who worship/pray are happier/more fulfilled, etc, then I'm afraid that your claim that worship is good for us seems silly. 

 I mean, I could make brownies for everyone.  What if I couldn't eat them (some allergy or whatever), and they would be for everyone else.  But not eating them is not necessarily bad, so why would I care if someone ate them or not? 

If this salvation is a free gift, what happens if I don't like the gift? Frankly, even if i believed in God, I wouldn't want what he's selling.  I'm happy as I am, and see nothing to desire worshipping. And even if the worship is not for god (but for us), it is still a kind of payment, so the gift is certainly not free (like some Christians claim, not necessarily anyone onthis thread). 

I'll continue to serve my fellow humans and avoid that waste of time you Christians call prayer/worship.  I don'y see how it's good for me.  if it's good for you, more power to you.  I won't be mad if you don't eat my brownies if you are not upset if I don't worship your imaginary friend.  (Imaginary friends might be good for kids, too.  Doesn't make them real). 

 Shaun

I'll fight for a person's right to speak so long as that person will, in return, fight to allow me to challenge their opinions and ridicule them as the content of their ideas merit.


StMichael
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Quote: If worship is

Quote:
If worship is designed for us, because it's good for us, then why have a punishment for not doing it?

The punishment is the lack of the good that we ought to have had. We are punished because we are denied happiness. 

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 How is worship good for us? I don't worship, and I'm quite happy without it.  Have you ever not worshipped a god for a period of time to know the difference?  What if it were possible to live a fulfilled life without a god-belief or worshop of said being?

In a certain sense, you can be happy without worshipping God, assuming we are speaking about this life alone. This is very obvious from the number of atheists in the world. I don't think that all of them are perfectly unhappy individuals. However, their choice in this  life will lead in the next to a lack of that perfect Good which is God and a loss of whatever good they placed their love in during this life. All created goods cannot satisfy our longing for perfect happiness on earth, and they will be our source of torment in the next because we chose a finite good over the infinite Good which is God.

In a certain sense, this would be, literally speaking, an "unfulfilled life." We would lack happiness at all in the next life, not finding our "end" in God. This understanding that we will never be happy because we chose some created thing over God is the chief torment of Hell (known in Church-lingo as the "worm of conscience&quotEye-wink.

 

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There are many people here who have fulfilled lives without worshipping.  So, unless you can demonstrate that they are lying about being fulfilled, that those who worship/pray are happier/more fulfilled, etc, then I'm afraid that your claim that worship is good for us seems silly. 

I do believe that a Christian would be even happier in this life than an atheist. For example, our share in the life of the Trinity here through the grace of God in the sacraments is itself a share in heaven, imperfectly. But that is neither here nor there.

 

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 I mean, I could make brownies for everyone.  What if I couldn't eat them (some allergy or whatever), and they would be for everyone else.  But not eating them is not necessarily bad, so why would I care if someone ate them or not? 

A brownie is a neutral good which is good only in relation to an individual's taste and health. For example, a brownie is not a good in relation to a sick person. But, perfect happiness is the possession of the Good itself, and by definition one for all men. Every man wills the good and only the good for himself. This is the nature of our will. Our general willing of our own happiness is true of all men. Thus, God is obviously not like a brownie, because He is the perfect and complete Good for all men.

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If this salvation is a free gift, what happens if I don't like the gift?

You could reject it, as you have done. I just point out that you would then never possess happiness. But, I mean, hey, it's your call Smiling.

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I'm happy as I am, and see nothing to desire worshipping. And even if the worship is not for god (but for us), it is still a kind of payment, so the gift is certainly not free (like some Christians claim, not necessarily anyone onthis thread).

The gift itself of being offered to share in the life of God is free, but we do need to cooperate with God to attain it. There is a famous story of Saint Thomas Aquinas that might illustrate this. He was passing through an area and stayed in the guesthouse at a particular convent of the Dominican nuns. They begged him, the greatest theologian in the world, to write for them a book on how to attain heaven, in easy terms that all could understand. They bought him paper and ink, and had provided a room for him. Saint Thomas declined until the nuns finally requested it as payment for having stayed in their convent. St. Thomas patiently agreed, and went into the appointed room. About a minute later, he came back out, handed the book to the nuns, and went on his way. The nuns opened the book with trembling fingers and read the one sentence Saint Thomas had written: To attain heaven, one thing is necessary: to will it.

 

Yours In Christ, Eternal Wisdom,

StMichael 

Psalm 50(1):8. For behold thou hast loved truth: the uncertain and hidden things of thy wisdom thou hast made manifest to me.