Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


DANGERS OF SAYING GOD IS HIDING

The idea of God goes with saying God is hiding.  But that creates some problems.

Confirmation bias

Saying God is hiding is exactly what somebody would tell you if they cared about faith but not about truth. They want you to fool yourself and are not true friends. They want you trapped in confirmation bias. They want you to make yourself think that good things that come to you naturally come from God.

Then you end up guessing there is a God and imagining you see his work and the evidence for him. People only trick themselves like that to relieve some fear or distress. It is not healthy.

The atheist can see certain happenings as showing there is probably no God. That could be confirmation bias too.

Prayer is just a technique for confirmation bias

You pray for something even it is just for patience or to be more prayerful.  Believers say God might respond promptly.  He might give you what you ask.  When he does, we will not be able to prove it for it may have been going to happen naturally anyway.  God supposedly respects nature too much to make it too obvious that he has acted.  So he hides.  He does not always give what you ask when you ask.  You may ask to love your baby better but end up loving your partner better.  So anything can look like God has made an input.  Prayer is just a recipe for telling yourself it works.  You arrogantly say God did this or that as if you could be God and see into his mind and know.  It is interpretation that makes you feel good not prayer.  Prayer is about lying to yourself and others for they have to be involved too.  Prayer thrives on arrogance and deception.  It alone makes you feel good about them.  It is such a good placebo for evil then!

Denies our right to an explanation now

God makes promises to us to care for us and look after us. But we suffer and die. He says he helps us fight temptation to sin. We still sin. And we don't know from looking inside if we really got any help from him or not. All we have is the Bible telling us we did. If God is unable to keep his promises he needs to reveal an explanation instead. If I owe it to you to keep a promise, and if circumstances forbid me to, my duty is to give an explanation. A general excuse like, "Oh I will explain it one day," or, "I have a purpose", is just that: an excuse. To say we have no right to know there is a God and what he has to say for himself is to insult us and to collude with a messer God.

Only a God who can do the impossible or the contradictory can enable us to love the sinner and hate the sin. You can do that no more than you can condemn the sin without condemning the person for the sin arises from the kind of person the sinner is. If God calls us to do the impossible then he must prove his existence to us. We need proof to justify teaching such an ostensibly dangerous doctrine. We need to be 100% clear in our heads that he can make it possible. 99% and less is the failure mark.

The dangers of the hiding God doctrine

If somebody is feeling extremely alone and abandoned by God then God cannot use the need to hide as an excuse. Hiding does not override a person's need for wisdom and help from God. Telling that person that God is with them though they cannot feel it is insensitive.

If God hides so that we may freely reject him you would think he could provide absolute proof to those who believe already!

The hiding God and his giving of doctrines that are not reasonably certain opens the door for wolves who wish to get the flock to kill in the name of God or faith. If you believe in God you believe in one who kills. Thus you have no right to assume that God has not delegated his right to kill to other people. He may even command members of another faith such as Islam to do it even if it is not the one true faith. If you really believe you should take the most non-judgemental interpretation of another's actions then you can excuse the killers by saying they really believe God told them to do it or that maybe he actually did tell them. Belief in God calls for the violent religionist to be enabled or as good as.

The ministers of God enjoy social benefits and a salary over God. If they proclaim a hiding God, then they cannot complain if spiritual mediums make money out of vulnerable people and tell them, "Okay Tony only wants to send his love. He doesn't want to tell you where he hid his money because he feels it is better for you to have faith that he talks through me and he doesn't want to give proof".

Jesus Christ came back from the dead and the reason he is not to be seen is because he has gone back to Heaven.

Mormons when asked for the golden plates that the Book of Mormon was supposedly translated from whine, "But Moroni took them back to Heaven!" Christians laugh at that unaware of their own blindness. The Mormon's stupid reply proves that there were probably no plates.

The hidden God of Christianity is in fact proof that God cannot exist. And it is proof that a God who loves us and wants to keep us safe from charlatans will not encourage people to believe in stuff that is badly supported by evidence and not encourage them to reason, "God hides the evidence or does not want us to know it for he wants to test our faith."

The hiding God and the meaning of life

Even if there is a God does that automatically mean that we are purposely made? The God concept itself implies that there cannot be any such thing as randomness or chance. But believers always act as if chance is still possible. They are inconsistent. People want to believe in God but they want to believe in randomness and chance far more. They don't want to think they are (along with everything else) are puppets. If they understood that if God is all-powerful then chance is only apparent chance and not really chance they would drop belief in God like a hot coal. Believers manage to live and act as if randomness is a reality. Thus if they see it as real they can hold that even if there is a God we might still have been made by chance.


BOOKS CONSULTED

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AQUINAS, FC Copleston, Penguin Books, London, 1991
BEYOND GOOD AND EVIL, Friedrich Nietzsche, Penguin, London, 1990
BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER, Association for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge, Dublin, 1960
CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, Veritas, London, 1995
CHARITY, MEDITATIONS FOR A MONTH, Richard F Clarke SJ, Catholic Truth Society, London, 1973
CHRISTIANITY FOR THE TOUGH-MINDED, Edited by John Warwick Montgomery, Bethany Fellowship, Minnesota, 1973
CRISIS OF MORAL AUTHORITY, Don Cupitt, SCM Press, London, 1995
EVIDENCE THAT DEMANDS A VERDICT, VOL 1, Josh McDowell, Alpha, Scripture Press Foundation, Bucks, 1995
ECUMENICAL JIHAD, Peter Kreeft, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 1996
GOD IS NOT GREAT, THE CASE AGAINST RELIGION, Christopher Hitchens, Atlantic Books, London, 2007
THE GREAT MEANS OF SALVATION AND OF PERFECTION, St Alphonsus De Ligouri, Redemptorist Fathers, Brooklyn, 1988
HANDBOOK OF CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS, Peter Kreeft and Ronald Tacelli, Monarch, East Sussex, 1995
HONEST TO GOD, John AT Robinson, SCM, London, 1963
HOW DOES GOD LOVE ME? Radio Bible Class, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1986
IN DEFENCE OF THE FAITH, Dave Hunt, Harvest House, Eugene, Oregon, 1996
MADAME GUYON, MARTYR OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, Phyllis Thompson, Hodder & Stoughton, London, 1986
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OXFORD DICTIONARY OF PHILOSOPHY, Simon Blackburn, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1996
PRACTICAL ETHICS, Peter Singer, Cambridge University Press, England, 1994
PSYCHOLOGY, George A Miller, Penguin, London, 1991
RADIO REPLIES, 1, Frs Rumble & Carty, Radio Replies Press, St Paul, Minnesota, 1938
RADIO REPLIES, 2, Frs Rumble & Carty, Radio Replies Press, St Paul, Minnesota, 1940
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REASON AND BELIEF, Brand Blanschard, George Allen and Unwin Ltd, 1974
REASONS FOR HOPE, Ed Jeffrey A Mirus, Christendom College Press, Virginia, 1982
THE ATONEMENT: MYSTERY OF RECONCILIATION, Kevin McNamara, Archbishop of Dublin, Veritas, Dublin, 1987
SINNERS IN THE HANDS OF AN ANGRY GOD, Jonathan Edwards, Sword of the Lord, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, undated
THE BIBLE TELLS US SO, R B Kuiper, The Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh, 1978
THE BRIEF OF ST ANTHONY OF PADUA (Vol 44, No 4)
THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE MORAL DILEMMA, G R Evans, Lion Books, Oxford, 2007
THE GREAT MEANS OF SALVATION AND OF PERFECTION, St Alphonsus De Ligouri, Redemptorist Fathers, Brooklyn, 1988
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THE LIFE OF ALL LIVING, Fulton J Sheen, Image Books, New York, 1979
THE NEW WALK, Captain Reginald Wallis, The Christian Press, Pembridge Villas, England, undated
THE PRACTICE OF THE PRESENCE OF GOD, Brother Lawrence, Hodder & Stoughton, London, 1981
THE PROBLEM OF PAIN, CS Lewis, Fontana, London, 1972
THE PUZZLE OF GOD, Peter Vardy, Collins, London, 1990
THE SATANIC BIBLE, Anton Szandor LaVey, Avon Books, New York, 1969
THE SPIRITUAL GUIDE, Michael Molinos, Christian Books, Gardiner Maine, 1982  
THE STUDENTíS CATHOLIC DOCTRINE, Rev Charles Hart BA, Burns & Oates, London, 1961
TWELVE STEPS TO A COMPASSIONATE LIFE, Karen Armstrong, The Bodley Head, London, 2011
UNBLIND FAITH, Michael J Langford, SCM, London, 1982
WHAT DO EXISTENTIALISTS BELIEVE? Richard Appignanesi, Granta Books, London, 2006
WITCHCRAFT, SORCERY AND MAGIC, J B Midgley, Catholic Truth Society, London, 2006