Atheism or God as other. My original idea for this post was to review a book defending atheism and promoting humanism. As I said in a previous post, on some days I think I’m an agnostic, and I’m open to a good argument against theism.
The book I chose, after looking at several, is The God Argument, by A. C. Grayling. It is so bad it’s hardly worth reviewing. Still, I’ll briefly summarize it before going on to explain the position shared by a number of theologians: that God is completely other. This isn’t the term used by most theologians, but I think it captures their position.
The reason the “God is other” argument is important is because most critics of religion criticize a version of Biblical literalism, showing almost no awareness of theology.
Grayling,The God Argument
The justifications offered by religious people for their beliefs very often turn out to be . . . rationalisations for something that is in its deepest depths is non-rational. (p 4)
Well of course religious people don’t base their arguments on reason; they base their arguments on faith. If you don’t understand this, then you don’t understand religion. Elsewhere Graying argues that religion hasn’t “passed the test of reason.” (pp 49-50) But of course that’s the wrong test.