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A Pragmatic God Essay

951 words - 4 pages

The question of the existence of god is not complicated, either you believe or you don't believe, but never the less it is a question that for most can not be easily answered . The answer to This question is many time based upon a matter of belief rather than supporting evidence, the lack of evidence pertaining to the existence of god is disregarded in the quest for the truth by some. An honest, reasonable and thoughtful person must contend that god does not exist based simply upon the lack of evidence of his existence. Granted the lack of evidence for the existence of god doesn't prove the nonexistence of god; but how can the thought of existence be originated with out prior evidence? In a courtroom, evidence is needed to prove a case. And I feel that this case isn't any different than one that would be found in court. According to W.K. "it is wrong always and everywhere, and for every one, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence." (The Question of God pg. 303) This is perhaps the basis of all known knowledge. What is knowledge without proof? This statement is what James attempted to refute with his argument "The Will to Believe." A person is forced to make a choice. A person who avoids the question is really making the same decision as the atheist in terms of, according to those on the side of god, the loss of the possibility of final reward. This person however stands to lose even more than the atheist; this person will not have the chance of being right, god or no god, because they never decided what to believe. Because of this they are worse off than the person who made the wrong choice. The actual decision of theism or atheism is a "genuine option: it is living because of both options" - god or no god - these "are genuine alternatives; it is momentous because it is clearly a decision that will affect" lifestyle; "and is forced because it is unavoidable," because it is from a "practical viewpoint indecision is tantamount to a decision" (The Question of God 308) that god does not exist. James trusts in an 'overbelief', a belief that does not need any hard evidence, only faith. Since I am evaluating what a thoughtful and reasonable individual should choose, I will use a scientist as an example, generally a person who is respected for their reasoning skills. When it comes to research or an experiment, a scientist would not take someone else's data as fact without testing it numerous times....

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