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The God Shaped Hole

One of my issues with the Abrahamic religions is that it doesn’t just focus on the ridiculous belief in an all-powerful supernatural being, but that they demand that we worship this imaginary being (often times in some strange and interesting ways).

A popular argument that some fundamentalist believers use is that humans were created (by their God) for the sole purpose of worshipping our alleged creator, God. Personally, I think this seems pretty vain of a deity to create beings for the sole purpose of worshipping him. In fact, to me it is a very unpraise-worthy trait. While I have lots of issues with this line of thinking (if you could call it that), that is not the issue that I want to discuss today.

Some of these fundamentalists will claim that if we don’t worship their God in their way, then we must then worship something else in an attempt to fill our “God-shaped hole in our hearts.” I have often told Christians who have made this argument that while I admire a lot of different people, I don’t worship anyone. No pope or priest or rabbi fills my “God-shaped hole.”

That doesn’t satisfy them. Instead, they then insist that I must then worship drugs, alcohol, money, or some other type of material thing. Well, I have never done any illegal drugs nor do I drink in any excess. In fact, I tell them that I have never even been drunk. I am not really about money either since I tend to live a pretty frugal life (although if people donated to DangerousTalk more that could change, lol).

That too doesn’t satisfy their need for my God-shaped hole. So next they often tell me that I try to fill my God-shaped hole with sex. I love this one because these prudish people set themselves up to be offended as the jokes about filling holes begin. They usually try to change the subject pretty quickly.

Finally they find the answer. Surprisingly this is usually their last effort:
Believer: “You fill your God-shape hole in your ‘heart’ with science!”
Me: “Yup, and oddly enough it really seems to plug it up nicely.”

Science isn’t a thing that can be worshipped; it is a tool that we use to understand the world around us. The scientific method is way of thinking which has given us all the technology that most people take for granted. We use the scientific method because it works. It is the best tool we have for understanding the world around us.

Interestingly enough, it seems that when science hasn’t yet figured someone out about the world, it is God which fills in the gaps. It is kind of funny when you think about it, God fills the science-shaped hole and that back when we couldn’t travel to the stars, believers filled that science-shaped gap with Heaven. Now that we have been to the stars, God lives in another dimension or something. Maybe God-believers need to start re-thinking this God-shaped hole bit, because it really seems like it is the theists using God to fill the gaps.

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  • dan

    the god shaped hole notion is an interesting idea, however it seems to have it’s own holes.
    i think it is fair to say that people desperately want to have meaning in their life, and need purpose.
    however, the idea that it is a god shaped hole is a very theistic centric notion, and it, of course, relies on the idea that god exists.
    people do need to find meaning and often people fill that hole with money, sex, drugs, or god.
    i do not think science can fall in this category, unless a passion for science gives your life meaning, but the the scientific explanation of the universe doesn’t really offer meaning, it offers truth which isn’t an essential part of filling this hole.
    but when you talk about how god fills the gaps of science i think you are off on the meaning of the god shaped hole, like i said the god shaped hole is based on meaning, the idea focuses on our need to worship god for a meaningful existence, not so much on our need to understand things of cosmic significance, which not every one really has.
    either way, the best way to solve this problem is for everyone to find something secular which they can feel passionate about and gives their life meaning, after people have a meaningful existence on their own the ‘facts’ of a christian god created universe aren’t hard to dispute.

  • http://myspace.com/scott888 Scott

    The belief that one needs to worship something is absurd. I suppose spiritual needs were produced when people began to be forced to convert or die. The cross is not a noble symbol but rather represents the conquest of anti-intellectualism.

    Since the masses worship and form the community centers, it effectively forces many to join their ranks, lest they be left out.

  • Chase

    Maybe the problem here is that we try to think outwardly to what fills this whole than inwardly. Every person has something they put their hearts, soul, mind, and desires into now if you can not see that to be a religion or a material object in your life the answer is probably that this “Hole” or “Void” is filled with yourself. Everything you do is to further yourself, to make yourself look good, to make other notice you. But the issue then is why would you fill a “void” or “Hole” (which is really a human innate desire and longing for something to trust in) with yourself when everyone knows that this will fail you. If everything is revolved around you and we all have the understanding that human nature is far from perfect and we all make mistakes then we are setting ourselves up for failure.

    What could possibly be wrong with putting you hopes, dreams, desires, heart, soul, mind, and life into a Being (God of the Bible) that is all-powerful, all-knowing, loving, kind, humble, and perfect? This issue goes much deeper than this but maybe this is something to ponder I find it funny that we all know what we are against but when someone asks us what we are for we cannot tell them with evidence or fact because we really don’t know we only know what we are against.

    Also I found it interesting when reading this that if you take this portion of this blog and replace the word Science or Scientific Method with the word the Gospel you get the same tone you here from a christian check it out.

    “The scientific method is way of thinking which has given us all the technology that most people take for granted. We use the scientific method because it works. It is the best tool we have for understanding the world around us.”

    The Gospel method is way of thinking which has given us all the Truth that most people take for granted. We use the Gospel method because it works. It is the best tool we have for understanding the world around us.

    • http://www.dangeroustalk.net Staks

      Yeah, except that the Gospel isn’t a method, it is a group of authoritarian books allegedly inspired by the creator of the Universe.

  • Chase

    Understandable that you believe that i was just drawing the point that with the change of one word the two opposing views could sound very similar.

  • Tim

    This has inspired me. My new phrase when people start preaching to me about the almighty: “Shut your god hole”.

  • http://www.myspace.com/DD_NU4EVER Diana

    Thanks to science the gaps are ever shrinking…and thus our gods are shrinking.

    We don’t need superstition to tell us why rainbows appear and we certainly can do without the hate and elitist attitudes religion breeds in us.

    Those who “believe” should feel shame for their illogical assumptions and groundless conclusions.

  • exoraluna

    Take the Independence out of Independence Day. Happy Holiday!