god-of-the-gaps. Should we or shouldn't we fiil in the gaps with God?

by KateWild 138 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Giordano

    Depending on your upbringing most of us in the Jewish or Christian tradition had the concept of a real live god imprinted on our brains at a very early age.

    Some out grow it others ignore it and still others like JW'S cling to it. Since your brain doesn't really finish growing until your mid twenties we get a lot of crap loaded in especially if your a witness. Waiting on Jehovah, new light, food at the proper time is part and parcel with god of the gaps.

    It is up to you to find the knowledge that are the 'gaps' when possible. If you don't get what's wrong with god of the gaps after some of the most intelligent responses I have heard on this forum..................

  • KateWild

    Thanks Laika- I didn't expect any comments from a fellow believer. Nice of you to validate my point, although I was really looking for ones to invalidate it. I will see you on my next thread about the bible though

    Kate xx

  • konceptual99

    Kate! I was really beginning to like you :-)

    After I said

    Science has never filled a gap in with anything that requires the supernatural intervention of a divine being.-K99

    You said

    I stopped reading your post after this sentence. I am afraid I disagree with you. Einstein knew the equation behind E=mc2. He understood how it worked. He believed in God. We all know that photons exist and are produced by matter in a chemical reaction. But I have never met or spoken tanyone who could explain it, or produce evidence that photons are produced by chance. When Einstein discovered a complex equation to explain how energy is produced, he did not say it required supernatural intervention. He just accepted and believed God did it.

    Newton also believed in God. His work on Gravity isn't as complex, but still drives home my point. There is a gap in human knowledge, lets fill it with God or an intellegent being as a Creator.

    Whats the big deal if we do?

    Well thanks a bunch for ignoring the rest of my post ;-)... As others have posted, Einstein's belief in a Christian mono-theistic deity is vastly exagerated. Even if he did I don't recall seeing anything where he appealed to divine intervention or causation where he lacked understanding or knowledge.

    Newton did have a faith and did ascribe gaps in his knowledge and understanding to God but he lived in a very different world.

    My point is that there no scientific theory that explains anything we have learnt about over the past 150+ years that requires God's intervention at some point to make it all happen. People have used pseudo-science around things like irreducible complexity to try and imply that God must have had a hand in the evolutionary process at some point but this is not generally accepted by the vast majority of experts.

    I am pretty sure that you could not present any scientific hyposthesis or theory that explains a gap in knowledge or understanding with God.

    You must have carried on reading since after I had said

    but there is nothing in the physical laws known to science that requires the active intervention of God to form the universe.-K99

    you then said

    I am afraid I disagree again. Yes there is, as another poster mentioned which impressed upon me....God had to use complex separating techniques in order for the correct balance of entantiomers to be formed in stero isomers for living things to form.

    If you think I lack IQ to draw this conclusion thats okay with me. But I lack knowlege of how it could have happened by chance, not IQ.

    I have to say I don't know enough about the specific example to comment on the scientific merits of your statement - I will leave that up to Cofty or Cantleave. Assuming there is no credible theory or even hypothesis then perhaps you are right - perhaps this is the smoking gun that proves there has to have been divine intervention. In some ways I would love it to be true as perhas I could then re-establish some kind of faith and dream that I will be able to enjoy the future beyond my limited lifespan now.

    What my gut now tells me however is based on every other example of the advancement of scientific knowledge - it all boils down to the predicable behaviour of the components of our universe. If there is indeed an open question over what you mention then my hunch is that when science finally gets around to explaining it they will not need to involve God at any point.

    I certainly don't think you lack the IQ to draw any conclusion you wish. In fact, just thinking about it shows you have an enquiring mind. I certainly don't claim any intellectual superiority just because I can no longer accept the God the the Gaps.

    I do however stand by my statement. I accept it is pretty sweeping and covers a lot of physics that is WAAAAY beyond my comprehension but in principle the whole of the timeline between the big bang and now is explainable. I guess that some of it is perhaps hypothesis rather than established theory but please correct me if there are any gaps where it is impossible for science to go from A to B without involving God.

    Your very statement above about "lack of knowledge about how it could have happened by chance" is the one that concerns me most when considering the God of the Gaps. My view is that often the use of "chance" in this context is perjorative and dismissive. It often reverses the argument such that an open, investigative mind is constrained. For example, the position of the Earth and Moon relative to the Sun such that life flourishes is considered by Creationists to be demonstrate design rather than the oppositive view that the life we see has been moulded by it's environment rather than built for it.

    I am not suggesting that you personally are dismissive of scientific progress however the God of the Gaps approach inevitably leads to a less open mind. It's your right and perogative to accept it but I won't be holding my breath waiting for the message of victory when science demonstrates that God needed to be involved in a given situation.

    Regardless, I do still like you :-)

  • adamah

    Kate, you really should read a biography on Einstein, esp one that examines the role of religion in his life.

    As expected, Xians want to cherry-pick quotes to make him into a believer, when he was as disdainful of faith and belief as a Jewish scientist could be in the 20th century (with anti-semitism prevailing, leading up to the holocaust).

    Kate said-

    Newton also believed in God. His work on Gravity isn't as complex, but still drives home my point. There is a gap in human knowledge, lets fill it with God or an intellegent being as a Creator.

    Newton believed and experimented in alchemy, the mystical practice that has long-since been abandoned as 'woo'. Science doesn't throw out the baby with the bathwater, since to do so would be foolish.

    Newton also lived LONG BEFORE Darwin's theory of evolution emerged, and even longer before TONS of confirmatory evidence has been discovered from diverse areas of science, eg the fossil record, DNA analysis, botany, geology, animal physiology, etc. Newton was also a public figure, and served in public office (secretary of the Treasury, I believe): he pretty much HAD to be a God-fearing individual, since there were serious repercussions at the time for NOT professing a belief in God (even as they are today).

    It's speculative to say what Newton would profess to believe if only he were alive today, but if he's a rationalist, he'd have NO external evidence to support beliefs in either alchemy or God, and TONS of evidence to support belief in evolution.

    Kate said-

    Thank you for promoting this, but if I was entirely comfortable with my ideology, I would be spending all this time doing something more productive. I am questioning my own beliefs, and I may in time be happy and content not to have any answers. But atm for me I want to take a closer look.

    Well, you're answering your own question there, as to WHY you believe: you acknowledge that believing in God provides you comfort and happiness (which is not so unique to you: most people who are honest would abmit that they fear the idea of God NOT existing, since they're afraid of the implications of God not existing).

    Reality doesn't hinge on what want: something like the existence of God either IS true or it's not. Humans cannot thru the sheer power of their will create a God into existence (although I recently saw a Xian bumper sticker that suggested otherwise: "if you believe, you can do ANYTHING!"). God is not Peter Pan, and if we believe or don't believe in fairies it'll have no actual effect on whether they exist or not, as if we are capable of such magical thinking.

    Kate said- Whats the big deal if we do?

    Most rational people vastly prefer to believe things that are really true, not as they WANT it to be.

    The harm is you undermine your own credibility within the scientific realm, since it provides pretty compelling evidence of your being the kind of person who allows their own desires to effect your perceptions sufficiently to be influenced by your personal cherished conclusions, rather than letting the evidence lead the way.

    You cannot claim to be a rational person (a desirable quality to possess in scientific endeavors), since you've admitted above that you'd rather wear 'rose-colored' glasses which is problematic, as doing so involves evaluating all evidence after it is filtered and colored by your emotions, thus admitting your perceptions are influenced by what you WANT it to be. Most scientists try to not allow their personal desires their work (and it's not just their views on God, but also their emotional involvement with their 'pet' beloved hypotheses), since all such biases can add to the problem of experimental biases.


  • KateWild

    K99, I am sorry I didn't read the whole of your post all at once.....I was being impetuous and answering one point at a time. You had so many points, so I just thought though it more polite to address as many different posters as I could with my time.

    I am glad you still like me that was nice.

    God of the Gaps approach inevitably leads to a less open mind.-K99

    I agree, I think I am being closed minded to an extent in this point of my deprogramming, but who knows what I will think in the future

    Kate xx

  • KateWild

    I have to say I don't know enough about the specific example to comment on the scientific merits of your statement - I will leave that up to Cofty or Cantleave.-K99

    cantleave can talk to me about chemistry at the same level....but cofty goes way over my head with evolution and fossils, he admits to knowing less about chemistry than me, thank you also for being so humble to admit your limits. It is very refreshing and validating for me.

    Take care

    Kate xx

  • prologos

    Neither Kepler, Newton, Einstein ( who constantly refered to "Der ALTE, (the eternal one), the Lord ,Jehovah even) stopped their research because of their world view.

    having the conviction that the gap are our's not god's DOES NOT STOP, stifle research.

    The extraordinary efforts, intelligence, energies required to fill the GAPS in our understanding now,

    should drive home the point how great a work, energy went into

    producing the work in the first place.

    the great quest, finding out how it works,

    One gap at a time.

    NO, we should not fill in the gaps with god, or pink unicorns to the exclusion of research, but

    that does not make research god.

  • KateWild


    So you think I am irrational? Well I suppose I am tenacious, impulsive, and brash in many situations. These are not always bad qualities. I suppose my cult personality is irrational, and maybe I need to do something about that.

    Thanks Adam for being Frank----I will be Lucy next time...LOL!

    Kate xx

  • MadGiant

    "I stopped reading your post after this sentence." - Kate


    You are using confirmation bias. We read something that supports what we believe, and we add it to the "I'm right about this" column. Evidence that contradict what we believe is dismissed. We make up a reason -- maybe the source is part of the conspiracy from the other side or whatever it takes to make sure the "I'm wrong about this" column remains empty.

    Take care,


    Of the, why bother if you are not going to read this anyway class.


  • KateWild

    You are using confirmation bias-MG

    I agree to some extent, some athiests do as well dont they

    Kate xx

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