Friday, May 27, 2011

Separating Existence From Reason

The maker's workshop.

While working through my ideas of a creator, a supernatural being responsible for all that we see and possess, I stumbled upon the two separate ideas.  1) The consideration and possible acknowledgement of non-random design of the universe.  2) The need to worship this creator.

As I write this I am sitting in a production-built home.  The builder has constructed over four hundred homes in this development alone.  This builder has constructed thousands of homes similar in design and function across this country.  It is a decent home, sturdy and stable.  There are noticeable defects though.  Things that should have been corrected on the drafting table.  Issues that should have been rearranged during the construction process.  Call back items that the builder refused to acknowledge after handing the keys to the new owner.

I know that home construction is a fairly simple process to understand, even if you do not grasp every detail.  Bulldoze the site and prep for the foundation.  Transform trees into lumber into walls and roofing systems.  Apply shingles and sheet rock.  Connect electrical, water and sewer lines.  Finish off all the steps that turn an assemblage of materials into a structure, suitable for habitation.

But at no point do I feel it necessary to worship the builder as omnipotent.

At this point somebody will say "you cannot compare people to God, we are simple and incomplete and ill-equipped to understand the design of the universe."  So?

Others will ask "How can you compare mistakes in delivery or construction of a house with the majesty of the nature, with all its wonder?"  Easily, because I see the mistakes.

We cannot address the presence of a "perfect god" while glossing over or ignoring the mistakes in creation.  It is either naive or shortsighted.  

I do consider the idea of some being, a creature of another dimension, a creator of worlds with a conscience far beyond our understanding.  But to be worshipped?  Probably not.  Rather than placing such a being on a throne bathed in light and exalted by lessor entities in the empty invisible space between the rich blue sky and the inky blackness of space, I imagine a cobbler.  A tinkerer maybe.  Some old, hobbled soul with a lifetime spend making and fashioning and assembling.  Make something from nothing more than scraps and an idea.  See what comes out of it.  Declaring the finished work neither good nor bad, neither whole nor incomplete.  Simply done.

And we are left of figure out the why.  What spurns on such a being to make and mold with little regard for the product?  I consider it is nothing more than to see what comes of the creative process.

So when I look at nature, or man-made creation, I can admire the exquisiteness of the design.  How systems are melded together, sometimes harmonious and sometimes calamitous.  But do I feel it necessary to drop to my knees and praise a god for making all things good and evil, beautiful and ugly?  No more so than I bow down at the construction office in my neighborhood.


  1. Are we made and molded with little regard for the final product, or are we carefully and purposefully made, all flaws intentional, for reasons beyond our current understanding? That is where faith comes in. For me at least :)

    Hope the knee is doing better, and hope to see you at a group run soon!

  2. I think it's the mistakes that make life beautiful. What if all the trees in the forest were exactly the same?