If GAE were true, the God of the OT is worse than Dawkins and Hitchens describe

But if you want to say something doesn’t exist, then you surely must have at least some idea of what it is that you think doesn’t exist. So I’m curious to know, what kind of God do you think doesn’t exist?

As for Euthyphro, I have my own preferred solution to the dilemma which I will want to tell you later. But I also feel that I won’t be able to articulate it well without first understanding what baggage you mean by the word “God”.

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What do you understand is my idea of God?

I think that no kind of God, or god, exists. But here we’re specifically talking about the sort of God you are assuming: omniscient, omnipotent, omnibenevolent. Beyond that, the Euthyphro dilemma applies to any God (or god) who is assumed to be the source of moral rules; it shows that there can be no such source, whatever its nature.


Obviously you didn’t find them interesting - I can tell from my site stats that you only read the summary post where I list my arguments, and the only first post of the two that I linked specifically - so you were not intrigued enough to read much of where I actually flesh the arguments out. And obviously you dnn’t find them compelling, or we wouldn’t be having this conversation. (Though it’s a different question whether your rejection of these kind of lines of reasoning is rationally justified.)

But that isn’t the point. The point is that I have reasons for believing that God exists and that God is good, reasons which are rationally justified as best as I can tell. And it’s more obvious to me that those reasons are true than the crucial premise of the argument from evil, that God’s existence and goodness is impossible or implausible given the existence of evil.

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Your site stats are wrong. I went to all three of the links. Though I found references to subsequent posts, I didn’t see any links to them. Where were they?

Best I can tell, your reasons are not rational at all, and would be considered so only by a person who already believes their conclusion.

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OK, this is true, but not complete. What would be the difference between God and a group of aliens from Planet X who are practically omniscient, omnipotent, and also omnibenevolent (relative to humans), due to their superlative technological capabilities?

I don’t know, though it would seem as if “omni” is not a relative prefix. Why do you ask?

Sorry, I meant that you only went to the first post in each series of posts. I know you clicked on all three. There’s a “next post” link on each page, and a “Posts” page from which all the posts are accessible… I may need to adjust the layout of the pages to make it easier to navigate.

If you’re willing, I’d appreciate your comments on where exactly I go wrong.

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The aliens might actually do something to alleviate human suffering.

For example, by e.g. eradicating Ebola, malaria and the HIV virus; repairing all the regressive genes that can lead to cystic fibrosis and other genetic conditions; and installing an early warning system and a damping system to reduce the destruction caused by seaquake tsunamis.

Your god has done none of those things.

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I ask because I think understanding the nature of God properly is
key to resolving the Euthyphro dilemma.

Yeah, so I see the problem. You think the main difference between the aliens and God are only what they would do, not something to do with the nature of their being itself. That’s why we can’t make any headway here.

I don’t think that, nor did I say that.

The reason no headway is ever made here is that the apologists either don’t understand or don’t respond to the actual points being made against their arguments.

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I don’t want to understand your idea of God. I am somewhat interested in your thoughts on the subject because I am interested in your thoughts as an intelligent human being. I am also interested in determining if you are some kind of religious fanatic who may try to harm me, my family or society in general. But understanding your idea of God is secondary to me to understanding you as a person, a Physicist, a fellow human being who is much younger than me and thus thinks differently than me.

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I’m just taking your answer to my question as you wrote it. If you think I’m misrepresenting, perhaps you can explain further what you think the difference between a super-powerful benevolent alien and God is.

It would help if you started explaining.


I’ll look again.

No, couldn’t find that link. “Next” goes to something unrelated.

Oops. I linked you to the just about the only series of posts that is interrupted by an unrelated one in the middle.
Just click next again. Or find the menu at the top that goes to the posts page. Cheers.

My advice: if you have a linked series, put a menu in the first post and a direct link to the next (and/or to the menu) at the end of each post.

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I’ve given you a difference. There are others, including the aliens not being responsible for creating the universe, the aliens being (presumably) physical/corporeal and detectable, the aliens communicating directly with humans rather than via ancient writings of uncertain origin and/or dubious charlatans, the aliens not being described completely differently to the point of incompatibility by the various human cultures, the aliens not treating those who ignore them to an eternity of torment, the aliens not having punished humans for consequences of their own actions, and the aliens not requiring worship.

What do you think I’ve missed?

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I think there are several places, but the most important is your answer to the Euthyphro dilemma: “The full answer to the dilemma is nuanced, but it can be summarized by saying that God commands what is good because He is Good . In other words, there is a third option, and the dilemma is a false one.”

I don’t believe that third option exists. You say God is necessarily good, but offer no argument for that. How can we say that he’s good if we have no standard of good other than “what God is like”? Further, his acts as stated in scripture are frequently quite different from good as we understand it, and his motivations, on those occasions when they are stated, are frequently not good either. Is it a case of “do as I say, not as I do?”

I have other objections, but I’ll mention just one now: your further assumption that because God created us, he has a right to obedience. You offer no justification for that either.