Rational Theism 


When I went to China in 1980, this was the title of my talk to the Guongdong (Canton) branch of the Society for the Study of Dialectical Materialism.  This was before my conversion to immaterialism and eschatology, yet it was a sufficient departure from their party line to warrant a 50% absence from the dinner afterwards.  I would like to think there were no more serious repercussions for the hospitality of the elderly sponsor or for his family.

Nonetheless, rational theism remains the hard core of my worldview.  If the eschaton is a necessary part of the Metanarrative, then who are we to demand otherwise.  The eschaton should be hunky dory as long as it does not occur on the watch of any given politician.  It would seem that every story naturally has an ending except your story and my story.  We live happily ever after.  And so we will, but not quite in the same bodies or mind sets, and there will be some drama between here and eternity.  'Ts'alright?  'Ts'alright'.  

The worst that any self-respecting God could be is supra-rational.  But the only thing really worthwhile that is generally assumed to be supra-rational is love.  Would it not be logical then to equate these two.  What a great idea!  Imagine the bloke who first figured that out.  

People have figured out many ways to try to prove God's existence.  But why should the burden be on them.  Would it not be much more difficult to prove that it is impossible for God to exist?  And if any being were given her choice, would she not want to have some recourse to some such other being.  

The next question is how likely are there to exist worlds from which God would be inaccessible, as is sometimes alleged to be the case with ours?  Given the existence of a creative force, how fragmented is it likely to be?  As a related issue, how much distinction can their be between existence and experience?  

As one piece evidence, mathematics could be our exhibit A.  If nothing else, the physicists have demonstrated that our reality is saturated with universal principles of mathematics.  What is to suppose that accessibility to universal mathematics is not a condition of existence?  And what is the evidence against access to universal mind being another, and possibly closely related, condition of existence? 

But back to our fragmentation question.  Given the existence of any sort of creative, bootstrappable potency, as it appears to be given here, then there would exist a great potential for universal intercourse.  If there were any countervailing tendency, it would hardly seem to have that same level of potency or intelligence associated with it.  Unless there were a rationale for fragmentation, this would not be the prevailing condition.  (see next page  The Ecology of Existence )

There is indeed an obvious rationale for a separation between creature and creator during a significant segment of creation.  Thus any alienation that we experience is logically rather more likely to be due to some such deliberation than to mere happenstance.  At the very least, it is not obvious that the burden of demonstration should be entirely on the side of those who choose to purvey coherence. 

It should be clear that we are already most of the way back to our original concept of BPW.  All paths of coherence and rationality lead back to this fundamental telos.  And what other paths might there be besides beauty and truth?  And to what other conceivable destination might they lead?  

The best we can continue to do is thoroughly explore every such path, to the limits of our reasoning.  What else might be more timely? 


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