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God during evolution?


PaulS
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These days, when I hear Christians telling me what God is (i.e. God's character, God's thought processes, God's intentions, etc) I can't help but try and relate all of those statements to my ancestors some 7 million years ago, and wonder how they could still apply.  I'm talking about the precursors to homo sapiens, such as Sahelanthropus (the little fella on the very left of the pic below)who lived 6-7 million years ago and from whom we descend.  More so I guess, I'm wondering how these people think about these things themselves.

I find it hard to imagine any sort of God in modern Christian language, being the same present and unchanged God, some 7 million years ago (or even longer).  Christianity often portrays God (and Jesus) as a friend, as a companion, as a caring parent.  Now I know that many Christians have difficulty accepting evolutionary science, but of those that do, I wonder how they relate their present day God's relationship with humankind to when humans weren't humans, say when we were more like Sahelanthropus here, or going back even further, when our ancestors were blobs of amoeba, or whatever species we were leading up to evolving into apes.

Was God interested in the 10 commandments 7 million years ago?  Why would God wait 7 million years to make Israel his chosen people?  7 million years is a long time to wait to save humans from their alleged sinful misery - why didn't God act sooner?  

I often hear Christians saying also that "God IS love".  I can understand some humans adopting that mindset through feeling that somehow we are special in this world (as different to dogs and cats, etc) but again, how does a God of love fit in a prehistoric world, before humankind.  Do they think God was waiting for millions of years for homosapien evolution?  Did this 'love' apply to dinosaurs and other animals killing each other and eating one another in the absence of humans?

Now obviously most of these questions are irrelevant to me because I don't understand God that way at all.  But I am curious how anybody who believes in God of any sort may relate said God to our existence 7 million years ago, and older.

Any thoughts?

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I’ve been pondering this and not sure how to express my thoughts. My first thought was to separate the notions of evolution & god.

I searched the phrase “is evolution fact, theory or hypothesis?” After reading a number of the results of this google search I decided my best response to the question is “evolution is an expression of the scientific method.” As for god, it is pure speculation, non-testable, non-discoverable. Therefore, religion is not an expression of the scientific method.

So, your question & response to the question “God during evolution?” is a metaphor regarding the notion of god and the notion of evolution, both of which are abstract and complex.

So, those are my thoughts …… not sure if I hit the target.

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23 hours ago, Nolose said:

So, those are my thoughts …… not sure if I hit the target.

Well, I appreciate you having a crack at expressing your thoughts, Nolose.  Any thoughts are worthwhile commenting on and discussing, but I'm not sure I agree with you concerning the metaphor bit.

Whilst both evolution and the notion of 'God' may be complex and somewhat abstract, I am wondering out loud if individuals who have a particular notion of God in mind, imagine how that version of God fits when considering a time when humans hadn't even evolved yet.  

Largely I see Christianity as having an idea of a God that exists for humankind.  Of course it's presented as though humankind exists for God, but that's not really how it is practiced in real life.  And subsequently, when we take humankind out of the picture (e.g. prior to evolution of the species of homosapiens) how does that notion of a God now fit in the picture? 

Of course, others who have different notions about God may see their notion fit (or not) in a pre-homosapien world too.  I just wonder if people think like that and reframe their notion/s of God to a different time and if it still works for them.

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Rather than saying metaphor, maybe I should have said simile and analogy. In any case I was off topic.

On 1/22/2022 at 3:55 AM, PaulS said:

if individuals who have a particular notion of God in mind, imagine how that version of God fits when considering a time when humans hadn't even evolved yet

While I have a notion of something else or something more, it is not a particular notion of God. I grew up in a mainstream belief system where there was a particular notion of God. From my experience I think you'd be more like to get the response of "uh?" from some, while at the same time others would become suspicious of you. You are speaking a different language, you're sounding like one of the "others."

On 1/22/2022 at 3:55 AM, PaulS said:

when we take humankind out of the picture (e.g. prior to evolution of the species of homosapiens) how does that notion of a God now fit in the picture? 

This is a good question, if the person you are asking understands it. The likely response would be "well then, that's when God was creating the universe for us." There is a maximum I once heard, "we interpret the words of others as we would have meant them" 

I think that you are correct that while Christianity present it as if humankind exists for God, their actions demonstrate otherwise. I think that for most people the belief system they belong to is like clothing, they put it on in the morning and take it off at night. For others, when they go to church, they check their brain at the door, and pick it up on the way out. While for the totally committed it is "Onward, Christian soldiers! Marching as to war ....."

I wish it was not like this, it would be nice to be able to ask the questions I really want to, without causing confusion or suspicion. I am not just talking about religious belief systems, I am talking about nonreligious belief systems too. All you have to do to identify them is listen for the modern day synonyms of "heretic." Maybe you catch yourself using these synonyms too.

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13 hours ago, Nolose said:

While I have a notion of something else or something more, it is not a particular notion of God. I grew up in a mainstream belief system where there was a particular notion of God. From my experience I think you'd be more like to get the response of "uh?" from some, while at the same time others would become suspicious of you. You are speaking a different language, you're sounding like one of the "others."

Yes, I was probably being rhetorical somewhat (or maybe just thinking out loud) in that I don't really expect traditional Christians to consider this or have a thought-through answer.  Like you say, it's a different language and you're right - some would probably look at me wondering what I'm even talking about! :)

13 hours ago, Nolose said:

This is a good question, if the person you are asking understands it. The likely response would be "well then, that's when God was creating the universe for us." There is a maximum I once heard, "we interpret the words of others as we would have meant them" 

Yes, I expect so.  I guess they could be satisfied thinking God was waiting for them (humans) and them alone.  I can't imagine it that way personally.

13 hours ago, Nolose said:

I think that you are correct that while Christianity present it as if humankind exists for God, their actions demonstrate otherwise. I think that for most people the belief system they belong to is like clothing, they put it on in the morning and take it off at night. For others, when they go to church, they check their brain at the door, and pick it up on the way out. While for the totally committed it is "Onward, Christian soldiers! Marching as to war ....."

I remember for myself when I had questions and doubts, I was encouraged to dispel them as doubts and questions were 'bad'.

13 hours ago, Nolose said:

I wish it was not like this, it would be nice to be able to ask the questions I really want to, without causing confusion or suspicion. I am not just talking about religious belief systems, I am talking about nonreligious belief systems too. All you have to do to identify them is listen for the modern day synonyms of "heretic." Maybe you catch yourself using these synonyms too.

True - belief systems exist both within and outside of religion, as does confirmation bias with what we read, observe and hear.  It's good to try and remember to that there is no black or white, only shades of grey.

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