Positive Atheism Forum
Graphic Rule
Human Love As Proof
Of God's Existence?
Bayard Stringer

Graphic Rule
Invisible Spacer

Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 4:34 PM

There is no such thing as an altruistic act. Even in saving our children's lives this is an act of saving ourselves. As in saving them we are indeed saving ourselves and our genetic legacy. I therefore disagree with the notion that anything any species does, human or otherwise, is indeed philanthropic. Even when giving gifts isn't the giver getting some kind of a feeling of self-worth, or self-pride? Being completely altruistic means you are getting nothing out of the act of kindness that you have bestowed.

As for love, and the act of falling into and out of it, this does not "prove" that there is indeed some form of a god. How does your friend not know that the feeling of falling in love is not some chemical and hormonal safeguard to ensure procreation in our species? Has she not seen the divorce rate? Marriage is man made. Therefore it would make perfect sense to assume that love is in fact just that. An insurance card that a person and his/her genetic traits will live on. I could write a thousand pages on all the "scientific" data that's out there to support the fact I just stated. TLC's Desmond Morris's series is very informative on our behavior as an animal, and the reasons why we behave in the way that we do.

Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 5:49 PM

Why must believers attribute everything "good" to god, while blindly ignoring every other reality, like jealousy, hatred, pain, disease, etc...? This "we love, therefore we are spiritual" is illogical. We can use her own argument to state that murder proves the existence of god. Murder also serves no "advantage" and is as anti-survival as it gets!

Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 7:29 PM

The question about love is typical of those that ascribe anything good, nice, or pleasant that we can't fully understand must, ipso facto, be attributed to God. If this is the case, then hate must follow suit. I know, I know, spare me -- that's the work of Satan. Satchmo said it best about jazz when ask to explain it. "If you have to ask what jazz is, no one can explain it to you." And of what use is beauty in the evolutionary scheme of things? None, but the pleasure buttons are there, and ain't it nice to push them. or better still, have them pushed? And how could "God" have created love anyhow, He was totally bereft of any familiarity with it. He largely presented Himself as a pugnacious bully bent on punishment and revenge against His own children. God couldn't even spell the word "love!" Everything He allegedly "gave" had a tangle of strings attached to it. If God is love, I'll take my chances with hate, at least hate is up front.

Art Haykin

Graphic Rule

The question about love is typical of those that ascribe anything good, nice, or pleasant [...] ipso facto, be attributed to God.

Walking through forests
          of palm tree apartments
     Scoff at the monkeys
               who live in their dark tents
Down by the waterhole,
          drunk every Friday
     Eating their nuts,
               saving their raisins for Sunday
Lions and tigers
          who wait in the shadows
     They're fast but they're lazy,
               and sleep in green meadows

            Well, let's Bungle in the Jungle
            Well, that's all right by me, yes
            I'm a tiger when I want love
            But I'm a snake if we disagree

Just say a word and
          the boys will be right there
     With claws at your back
               to send a chill through the night air
Is it so frightening
          to have me at your shoulder
     Thunder and lightning
               couldn't be bolder
I'll write on your tombstone,
          "Thank you for dinner"
     This game that we animals
               play is a winner


The rivers are full
          of crocodile nasties
     And he who made kittens
               put snakes in the grass, he's
A lover of life
          but a player of pawns
     Yes, the King on his sunset
               lies waiting for dawn
To light up his jungle
          as play is resumed
     The monkeys seem willing
               to strike up the tune

            {Repeat Refrain to fade}

Graphic Rule

From: "walt wentz"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Positive_Atheism_Letters_Section
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 5:55 PM

Does the existence of love "prove" God? No more so than the existence of the eyeball does. Both are essential to human survival, and both doubtless arose because those proto-humans deficient in either did not survive.

Love -- which has different aspects in different cultures--appears irrational at first glance, particularly to small boys and recent divorcees. Consider, however, that our remote ancestors lived in an implacably hostile environment, where little more than one letter meant the difference between being diner or dinner.

Anthropoid babies had a much longer infancy than the young of other animals; the females who bore them were somewhat handicapped by the continued burden, hence required additional protection from outside dangers; and males who chose their mates through cues promising healthy offspring (youth, broad hips, shiny hair, etc.) had an unconscious but very vested interest in protecting their contributions to the gene pool.

A female who was defended against predators (and other males) could bear more offspring to the protecting male, this increasing his representation to the gene pool. A female who attached herself to a mate she found appealing for her own biological cues (size, protectiveness, health) might bear his offspring in more confidence -- although, admittedly, there is also apparently a biological urge for females to stray, thereby bringing in genetic contributions from outside the pack and prevent inbreeding.

At any rate, "love," the often-irrational feeling that drives people to sacrifice freedom, independence and sometimes the good opinion of family and friends, seems a logical development from this ancient pattern of subconscious biological cues and protective urges. It can hardly be convincingly used as an argument for God, because almost as much "sin" and pain is engendered through love as through the more mindless varieties of religion.

Walt Wentz

Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 8:39 PM

First, there are certain animals that mate for life, to which most would probably not attribute the emotion of "love." The argument of reducing the amount of sexual activity via love thus fails with the inclusion of animals: it works best for the species.

Secondly, as Cliff maintains, the existence of one manifestation (love) does not necessarily determine the existence of some other manifestation (god).

Thirdly, and perhaps more importantly, I have always wondered where humans acquired the ability to act kindly towards others (if and when it does happen). And upon contemplating the subject, I found myself postulating the idea that because animals need, in some instances, to act together as a group, and that those that do not will be ostracized from the group, it might make sense that our ability to be philanthropic evolved as we did. Upon further research, I found that others have held the same opinion: check out the book, "The Animal Instinct" for a more in-depth analysis of this phenomenon.

-- Joel

Graphic Rule

From: "Dorman"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 10:56 PM

An operational definition of love is Harry Harlow's contact comfort. Read up in general psychology. It effects intelligence and thriving. It is related to imprinting in that it is a biological characteristic.

Human love or lack thereof has no relationship to any belief.

Graphic Rule

From: "John Dearing"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 05, 2000 9:10 PM

Your friend claims that the existence of love proves that some god exists. The existence of something is not proof of a claimed cause; if it were, all claimed causes would thus be "proven", and this is a logical absurdity. The causality is what we're trying to establish; we can't, therefore, assume that causality as an axiom. You might as well argue that the existence of hate proves there is no god, or that the existence of atheists proves that there is no god.

Like all claims of fact, the burden of proof here is on your friend. She must prove her claim. We can't be expected to just take her word for it. Adding the "god hypothesis" makes her claim more complex than is necessary (what proof is there that a god exists?, why is love important to this god?, etc.); in science and logic, simpler explanations are favored.

Love, like all ethical principles, is a product of evolution. It simply contributes to the survival of our species for love to exist. Hence, there is indeed an advantage to people feeling love. Procreating is not enough; with the lengthy period of relative helplessness human children experience, and the relatively few offspring Homo sapiens have, parents (and other relatives, and friends) need to be available for years to raise these children.

I have found a tendency toward love, philanthropy, and humanitarianism in general to be stronger among nonreligious people than among believers. For example, nonreligious people are overwhelmingly opposed to settling differences among nations with war; virtually every military conflict is caused by or at least supported by religious people. Look at conflicts in Ireland, The Middle East, India, and so on. Now list all the wars that nonreligious people have fought against each other. (It will be a mighty short list!)

The true power of love experienced by your friend is not implanted in or imposed on her by an external, supernatural being for its own reasons; it is natural, and is found within her. She should enjoy it freely.

John S. Dearing, President

Graphic Rule

From: "Kamran Ijaz Bloach"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 1:34 AM

Dear Sir,

As far as the question that philanthropy means that there is some existence of god, I would like to respond to this issue.

What we mean by philanthropy, may be some thing done with good intention, even if it proves harmful for others. So the question is, why we do philanthropic deeds? First of all, we never do anything to benefit other kinds, for example if I am helping somebody, I am helping myself. So we do all philanthropic acts by ourselves getting the maximum of advantage (satisfaction, self-actualization etc.).

Secondly the most important factor is that usually we don't do bad things because we have the fear that someone else can do the same to us. Most criminals and bad people do bad acts because they think that nobody can harm them.

Let's take an example, there is a person, say Rob. His father was killed when he was 3, his mother married someone else, and Rob is sexually abused during his childhood and faces extreme poverty, etc. Now he is a young man. Let's suppose he becomes a thief, it's a big social crime, but certainly no crime for Rob, since he has no fear of losing his dignity, Neither is he responsible to his family. Even if he murders somebody or rapes women, he thinks this is no crime.

So its the background of a person or his values of bad or good shaped by his society or physical environment and not a god thing.

Graphic Rule

From: "Mark R. Hatlie"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 5:44 AM

Altruism can be explained by group evolution but ants, the suicidal ones of which do not procreate, is not the best example. For purposes of such arguments, each ant colony is really only one individual in the population. Birds who chirp a warning that a predator is coming and save the group by giving away their position (and thus being eaten more often than the other members of the group) are better examples. Someone recently told me that group evolution arguments are going out of style. If that is the case and group evolution is "bunk", then there is still this argument: Why is altruism more prevalent in Japan, a society with pagan traditions and a high percentage of atheists, than in the monotheist West? Apparently, culture and psychology have more to do with it than "God".

Monogamy -- which your "opponent" said was one product of love that was supposedly disadvantageous in the struggle for survival -- is not. For the female, it binds the male to her and makes his work and resources available to the offspring during a time when she is especially vulnerable. For the male, it assures that the offspring he is supporting are his and that he is not wasting his energy supporting someone else's genes. Monogamy is one strategy among several that, depending on the species and the environment, can be very effective. In some unusual situations -- involving harsh climate or unusual cultural development -- it might not work or it might have a suitable alternative, like in Mongolia where, until recently, women had several husbands or on some South Pacific islands where "free love" is the norm and men help care for the offspring of their sisters, thus spending their energies on at least some of their own genes.

Thirdly, I would argue that there is nothing about love that is specifically human. I might be that humans have a more developed or complex set of feelings. But there is nothing qualitatively different from what an animal might feel, as far as I can tell. So if love is evidence for something supernatural, it would not support an human-centered model such as the claim that only humans have souls.

Another point: Even if all these arguments were to collapse and "love" really is evidence for something supernatural, it still offers zero support to any particular religion. It is a common fallacy among theists to think that once they have a good argument for the claim that "some god must exist", they have lent support to the truth of the stories revolving around such figures as Jesus, Muhammed, or Noah. These specific versions of God or His prophets rest almost entirely on other evidence -- historical evidence.

Mark R. Hatlie
Tuebingen, Germany

Graphic Rule

From: "Grahn, Johan"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 6:08 AM

Love, like all 'abstract' feelings such as hate and envy, does not provide evidence for a god. The most common mistake that Christians do when they use the theory of evolution to fit their own viewpoint is to make it apply to individuals only.

The truth is that evolution through natural selection creates individuals with high potential of survival, but the survival trait does not have to be a trait limited to the physique of the individual. A species that is prone to cooperation have a higher "survivability" than one that doesn't.

If the species enjoy cooperation (love) the "survivability" becomes even higher. Other abstract feelings such as morale were developed in the same fashion.

Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: Sign Me Up For Your E-Mail List!
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 6:17 AM

Researchers have clearly shown that for many species, including mammals, nurturing their young compensates their inability to reproduce in enormous numbers. Nurturing stimulates the production of hormones benficial to both the parents and infants, allowing the cycle to continue. The success of natural selection is not the survival of the fittest, but in the ability of an organism to adapt and reproduce in the environment in which it finds itself, through chance mutations. This explains the diversity of evolutionary processes.

The experiences of having sex partners who do not need to also be predatory or competitive can culturally evolve into associations that include cooperation and trust, the foundation of what we call love. These expand to include extended families and communities (all distant relatives), and promote the survival of all members.

This may be the cause of violence against competing groups, so often inflicted by one religious group against another.

The species preservation instinct clearly expressed by "lower life forms" may be as strong in humans, though less apparent in our daily lives. Affluent citizens can afford to indulge this instinct, usually at a cost. Benefactors often expect recipients to conform to their own belief systems, reinforcing the survival of their particular goals for the community (species).

Graphic Rule

From: "Diamond Jim"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 8:36 AM

I will offer a scientific explanation some psychobabble on "love."

What most people regard as "love" is actually something called "limerence." Limerence is a state of euphoria caused by the brain unloading beta-endorphins and other endogenous opiate-like substances in to the synapses. In addition, increased levels of norepinephrine and dopamine add to this gleeful state. If one wishes to chemically mimic this effect, take a small dose of an opiate (heroin, morphine or codeine will suffice) and a small dose of either an amphetamine or cocaine. These chemicals will provide a similar "high" as the brain dose naturally under conditions of limerence. This is the good news.

The bad news, or the reality of the situation is that limerence serves a biological/evolutionary need: to get two people together long enough to make a baby (or two) and ensure its survival for a few years. Most marriages are great the first few years, but as limerence wears off so does the high concentration of those brain chemicals. Most people assume that this loss of a high is a loss of love. So people start looking for limerence again -- and to do so, generally requires searching for a new lover. The consequence is divorce, affairs etc. A biological indicator that humans aren't really meant to be monogamous. Look at a typical Hollywood marriage, the couples fall head over heels in love, and then a few years later (or months in many cases) they split -- searching for that high again.

For those couples that do survive the end of limerence and stay together that is great, but the pair bonding is due to a strong friendship (which is also great). They can attribute their relationship's longevity to love, fairies or stellar alignments -- it doesn't matter. Two people have found a person they don't mind being around to much.

So, scientifically, "love" is best described as a combination of limerence (short-term) and friendship (long-term). Just like the existence of a God(s), love has not yet been proven.

Thanks, love your site!


Graphic Rule

From: "Smith Design Works"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 10:14 AM

Love is the human emotion that keeps couples together, ie. making psychologically healthy offspring. Love is natures' way of keeping a man and a woman (or other couple) together to raise children. Children raised in a two parent family are more likely to do better and live longer than children from single parent homes. A team of two is stronger than a single person. Look at our past: women took care of the children cooked and gathered food while men hunted and protected the family unit. Love is a necessity of survival not a god-made attribute.

The idea that because humans' have a psychological bond (love) with their mate explains the existence of a god is absurd, shallow, and shows a complete lack of understanding of sociology and psychology.

Certain mammals stay together their whole lives, is this person arguing that Wolves and Dolphins stay together because of love?


Graphic Rule

From: "Aquatarkus"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 11:20 AM

This question is just one example of many questions -- one's which I was not supposed to ask -- that finally led to my recovery from god-memes.

Unfortunately, it has recently reared it's ugly head again in the last three years since my wife became "born-again."

I asked my wife how she could give her life, mind and heart to this doctrine. Specifically I asked:

God is going to bring you to an eternity in heaven because of your proclamations; god is going to send me to an eternity in hell because of mine. Why do you want to spend an eternity with an entity that would not only send a your husband -- a basically good person -- to hell, but also separate you and I for an eternity? Would you plead my case? Don't you want to spend your eternity with me also? If god is so benevolent and loving, why would he do this to me -- and you -- for the simple "sin" of me not being able to bring myself to believe in his existence as presented to me by humans and it hasn't bothered to present itself to me directly?

She told me -- in a nut shell -- that if I didn't make it to heaven (and of course, she's praying for me and has "faith" that I'll eventually "come around") "it would basically be my fault because I made my choice and that no, she wouldn't plead my case once she got there because god had made his choice (isn't this a contradiction?) and that as long as she can spend her "life" at the right hand of god, she wouldn't be worrying about it anyway, because god's love would make her forget all of the evil she had to endure in this world.

I asked if she was calling me evil and she said yes, as long as I reject god's "love".

So here I am, a man who loved her and her kids -- willingly -- enough to provide for her and them, to give them a father and all that entails, etc. -- and I'm evil?

This type of "love" has, needless to say, injected problems and conflicts into a relationship that until it arrived, were not there.

This "love" has torn asunder what was once a kind, caring and truly loving pairing, in ways that I never thought possible.

God has done to my marriage what another man, another woman or abuse could never have done by themselves.

This is not love ... this is narcissism! The kind that gives people a feeling of Carte Blanche to piss all over today, over what you have and could have here and now, for the false promise of "life everlasting" which, based upon the way it has been described to me by my wife and her "friends", is a place I'd do everything in my power to avoid. In hell, at least I'd still my thoughts, memories , emotions etc. -- my eternity would, in short, be mine.

That's if such a thing existed in the first place.

If the story of god is true, think about this:

It's the largest, most organized, most final "final solution" campaign -- yes genocide, the elimination of those not like or opposed to yourself -- ever perpetrated and a "loving" god is responsible.

If this is the source of the love that I feel for my parents, my own kids, my step kids and others in my life, than I also renounce love, because based on this, it's nothing but hate.

Yes, this has been a very hurtful time for me and this question has brought up some painful realities that I am currently having to work through, so sorry if I got off on a rant.


Graphic Rule

From: "Sheree Boulet"
To: "'Positive Atheism'" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: RE: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 12:37 PM

There is a biological basis for human love. Humans must procreate in order to further their species. From an evolutionary standpoint, the best environment to raise offspring consists of two parents. The mother nurtures the child while the father protects the family and hunts for food to sustain them. Therefore, human love evolved to protect the family unit and thereby ensure the survival of the species. In addition, nature ensured the human tendency toward love by making it feel good through the induction of certain pleasurable biochemicals released within the body. As a general rule, humans will always seek out pleasurable activities, even if they appear to be self-sacrificing in nature.

Graphic Rule

To: "'Positive Atheism '" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: RE: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Thursday, July 06, 2000 8:18 PM

After a hard day of work, I visit my two-year-old nephew and get a big hug and an "I love you" from him. Feeling like the 'best-loved aunt' helps me wind down after work, think pleasant thoughts, relax, and feel good about myself; that is a pretty positive advantage.

Are we limiting the number of sexual partners we have because we only have sex with people we love? In reality, we can procreate without feeling love, and many many people do! In fact, there are many people who don't even limit the number of sexual partners they have!! Anyway, although our Western culture praises procreating only with someone we love, there are many cultures where the idea of romantic love is ludicrous. Pairing love and sex is a purely cultural notion.

Some people like the warm feeling they get from helping others selflessly ... no other motive is necessary.

Graphic Rule

From: "Gregory Tinker"

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Friday, July 07, 2000 5:32 PM

For starters, what do you mean by "love?". It is a mistake to assume that only one definition could be applied to an emotion so complex and varied. I'm sure we've all heard how Eskimos have 100 billion different words for "snow". One would think that we could take the hint for more abstract intangibles, so as to better communicate one's intent. A few examples: 1) do you mean the love that a parent has for a child? Someone for their spouse? I love my parents and I love my wife, but it is not the same thing (even though I live in the south). 2) Some would define love in a relationship as necessarily including Jeezuz. Is that necessarily true? I'm in love with my wife, but our wedding vows had nothing to do with a third party. Who are you to say that my wife and I do not actually love each other? 3) I work with animals. At my job we have a lot of monkeys. One of them got pregnant, but the baby monkey was stillborn. However, the mommy monkey eventually had to be sedated in order to get the baby away from her-she wouldn't let anyone near the baby! Why is that? Does the mother feel love?

If "love" is not adequately defined, how can you tell what emotion (if any) is being experienced? You need to do this before assessing whether it is "advantageous" to love. Back to the monkey example: ow could a human mother acting in the same situation have love, but not the monkey? Or do human mothers even experience love? Is it just a reproductively convenient behavior?

Typical behavior of many animals is for females latch to males for security and protection, both for themselves and for childbearing, as the males tend to be the stronger sex in most mammals. Likewise, the males generally do a lot of "sowing the wild oats". This ensures a lot of genetic variability. However, it is often extremely advantageous to limit the number of partners (e.g. STD's are a big issue. Indiscriminate sex will spread harmful organisms.)

To make ourselves feel better. Your friend needs a hefty dose of the Ayn Rand view of altruism. She probably has been receiving a lot of guilt trips from religious "leaders" throughout her lives (as do we all from the wonderful proponents of spiritual communism).

A more biological example of altruism is why do older members of a species allow themselves to be run down by predators, even though they may have a chance to escape? There are some examples of this occurring in the wild, although the specifics escape me. The point is, by doing so the elder animals allow the younger, more virile stock to survive. I am unaware of such "divine commands" to any manner of wildebeest to do act this way; it is simply an aspect of evolved behaviors.

Humans have reached a point in their evolution where the traditional "whoever runs faster gets dinner" mentality doesn't hold true in the strictest sense. Humans are generally poorly equipped to deal with their environment in a physical sense, when compared to other potential competitors. We spend most of our time developing outside the womb, we have no natural weapons (e.g. claws, fangs), we only have one child at a time (typically) and gestation is long. We are not particularly fast, nor are we particularly strong. Points like this make it obvious that the mental aspects of human development have allowed us to control our environment in ways never seen before. We should use our minds to explain occurrences, rather than fall back on superstitious explanations of the poorly understood. We pick the next stage in our evolution.

Graphic Rule

From: "Janet Voska"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Saturday, July 08, 2000 11:54 AM

Why look a gift horse in the mouth?

When in the throes of passion with a lover, or suckling a baby at one's breast, or enjoying the sunset with a neighbor, or sharing an apple with a friend (as in Adam) what need is there for explanation?

Is it not natural upon such experiences to find yourself giving to life, as pleasure and sharing increase the likelihood of further experiences of joy? Are not these shared experiences enough in themselves without bringing "God" into them?

Of course, "God" has been brought into them, so as I see it now there must be qualifications to these joys of love, awe , friendship and generosity, i.e.:

Well, by now, if I was a "believer" I would get a headache, plug a pacifier in my kid's mouth so he/she wouldn't get used to too much physical pleasure, grab an umbrella because by now I'm in no mood for any sunset, hope I don't run into my neighbor and really be pissed at Eve for getting me into this predicament and get to the nearest prayer meeting to get over my being out of the "Will of God".

But, alas, I'm not a "believer" .

I'm just a Freethinker.

Graphic Rule

From: "Luciene Lima"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Sunday, July 09, 2000 8:37 AM

I believe that love is a human feeling, like lots of another feelings. A human feeling. Nothing more, nothing less.

Normally we have the tendency to expand our (human) concepts to find another (human) concepts; these (human) concepts are so interesting (as new) that we think there is something divine in them.

We make some superlative judgments to find empty equations on them.

The habit to create empty superlative concepts gives us tools, these tools are faced as real conditions/situations, but they are not, they are just tools, human and empty tools.

Empty equations, habits in superlative concepts and the originated tools are not enough to justify the existence of a god.


Graphic Rule

To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Monday, July 10, 2000 6:05 PM

Human love only proves that people are capable of feeling and expressing this emotion. Humans are also able to show a wide range of emotions, some of them extremely destructive, hurtful, and even fatal to others. To state that the fact of human love supports the existence of God is a failure of deductive logic. In other words, the writer is saying "If humans can love, then there is a God because God is love." This deductive statement is so flawed that it is difficult to determine where to even begin to point out the errors.

First, and most obvious, the logical connection and flow are not there. Who are humans to suppose that they reflect the qualities of a supernatural being.

Second, why only love? If God is a supernatural being then this being also possesses a full range of emotions. If one believes the Bible, then God is capable of rage, murder, and demands full obedience to gain his favor. One could argue that these emotions sound like they belong more to a dictator than to a supreme being.

Third, the only evidence that is accurately pointed out by the writer is that people attribute the construct of perfect love to God, but this construct cannot supposedly be achieved by humans, nor can humans define it.

All in all, a simpler way to put this illogical statement would be as follows: Apples are red, and roses are red, and therefore apples are roses and roses are apples and the existence of one is evidence of the existence of the other.

Graphic Rule

From: "Rob Dirne"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Monday, July 24, 2000 2:05 PM

Human love can be used to point to anything you like.

As far as I see it, we've either been created or evolution is true. Since I can not see any evidence for evolution, I see no alternative than to gladly accept that the universe was created by God and not by nothingness. There is much evidence for the existence of God, but no one likes to hear that, because if this was proven true, suddenly our relationship with that God turns out to be a mess and who wants to end up in that hot place..... It's much nicer to believe we can do what we want without any long term consequences.

We can observe natural selection and we can even find the odd "beneficial" mutation. However, more and more scientists are realising that all these genetic changes Darwin used to "prove" evolution, involve loss of information and do not lead to increase in information needed to get the amoebe to man macro evolution.

The more I read about evolution the more I realise it is very much a joke and it has given me many amusing moment.

Then a word on you free thinkers. It appears to me that anyone can think as freely as they want, as long as it doesn't involve a Creator. Doesn't sound very free to me.

Greetings from a devolutionist

Graphic Rule

From: "Janet Voska" To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Monday, July 31, 2000 10:50 AM

I just read Mr. Dirne's comments about love proving the existence of a god. Not any god but his "God".

And there in a nutshell is why I find it impossible to carry on a conversation with a "believer" unless it has to do with the most mundane of subjects.

That Mr Dirne would shamelessly refer to me as a person who claims no responsibility for my actions and implies that I am gnawing at the bit to perpetrate all kinds of mischief and mayhem because I don't believe as he does and further tells me that my thinking abilities are to be pitied only confirms to me once again the dangerous mind set of "true believers" in this country.

The thinly veiled religious fascism that this man portrays in his faith and his hardly hidden contempt for the those who are without "God" and choose to remain so, should alarm any citizen of this country who values liberty and the Constitution of the United States of America .

It is only a short step from faith in his "God" to political suppression of all the "ungodly" in this country. Til my dying breath I will fight for the separation of church and State.

"Save me, oh 'God,' from your believers!"

Graphic Rule

From: "Dave Gilbert"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Re: FORUM QUESTION: Human Love As Proof Of God's Existence?
Date: Wednesday, July 26, 2000 8:45 PM

Love is a quantifiable scientific phenomenon much like any other complex emotion, or, if you will, an effect of an emotion. If somebody wants to believe in something enough, and they are prepared to go beyond reasonable theories to make a connection between one thing and another, they can then call it proof, or as in this case pose it as a question which attacks an opposite position. Science doesn't ask 'Why' as much as 'How', and that just isn't enough for people who insist, or have been brought up to believe, that there must be a reason for life.

Hence Religion, which is a type of archaic science which denies rational consideration unless it serves it's purpose. It is a cancer which infects the minds of intelligent as well as ignorant people. My high school science teacher was a christian because the woman he married was one, but in his heart he knew that creationist theory was the tripe we all know it to be.

Thus, people who are truly religious see the world a different way, as if they have a subroutine that denies all fact that refutes religion, and discounts all ration that would suggest a weak case for the argument posed by their religion. Worse still, some people don't leave the subroutine in this passive mode, but take the active stance of arguing against science for the case of religion, in this case, for the complex point that there is an interventionist god.

It isn't so much that we need to exhaust all natural explanations before turning to the supernatural. In my opinion we are innocent until proven guilty. The onus is on the bible bashers to prove the existence of a god, not on us to prove there is no god.


Graphic Rule

From: "John&Paula@SerpentGarden"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: Tuesday, February 06, 2001 11:12 PM

"Love" is the product of evolution, and while we are on the subject of evolution, I have a rebuttal for the "devolutionist". I, too, have read and continue to absorb the proofs that are out there for evolution, and I have also been subjected to the "all-knowing", "all-loving" God of the Old Testament. There is no proof that such a being exists. And evolution knowledge grows and compounds, but you do not want to hear this because you want to believe you are "special", made by a divine being. You also cannot handle death and the return to "nothingness."

As for love, it is not uniquely human. Have a dog or a cat? I'm sure all the ladies out there see the same look in a dog or a cat's gaze when they are looking for attention ("love") or food as when their husband wants the same. Love is a mammalian thing: Read up on the mammalian brain and you will soon realize how chemicals and brain structure are responsible for everything we are and do. Proof for evolution lies in mammalian progress: The higher you climb the food chain, the stronger the hold "love" has over it's minions.

As an atheist, I "love". When "God" was in my life (my childhood), "He" caused me much distress and pain. Why? Because he was an angry, jealous and petty god that I was supposed to believe "loved me". Total Crap!

Missy P.

Graphic Rule
Added: December 8, 2001

From: "Deborah Allman Reynolds"
To: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
Subject: Human_Love_As_Proof_Of_God's_Existence_9627
Date: December 08, 2001 9:26 AM

I would say to the woman that her argument is invalid. Love is, in fact, essential to our survival, simply because we are social, relational beings. Way I see it, everything in the universe is somehow related to, and part of, everything else. The primal response in everything, from human to subatomic realities, is empathy, feeling the feelings in the other. Now, empathy is love,. at least at a minimum. Because everything is interrelated, we all make up a kind of matrix of sensitivity, which I like to think of as the body of God.

Blair Reynolds

Graphic Rule

Material by Cliff Walker (including unsigned editorial commentary) is copyright ©1995-2006 by Cliff Walker. Each submission is copyrighted by its writer, who retains control of the work except that by submitting it to Positive Atheism, permission has been granted to use the material or an edited version: (1) on the Positive Atheism web site; (2) in Positive Atheism Magazine; (3) in subsequent works controlled by Cliff Walker or Positive Atheism Magazine (including published or posted compilations). Excerpts not exceeding 500 words are allowed provided the proper copyright notice is affixed. Other use requires permission; Positive Atheism will work to protect the rights of all who submit their writings to us.