Previously I discussed the futility of arguing the existence or non-existence of God (April 4, 2016, Some Thoughts on God is a Question, Not an Answer). This is not the same as discussing the merits of a belief in God’s existence.When Voltaire wrote “If God did not exist it would be necessary to invent him,” he was not saying that he doubted God’s existence; in fact, the statement was made as part of a piece that he wrote condemning and refuting an atheistic essay called The Three Imposters. He was concerned that the essay was an extremely dangerous work since it questioned a notion that was useful for society: the idea that criminals would be punished in the afterlife. I think Voltaire’s view was too small.
Let me digress to discuss the concept of a worldview, which, according to Merriam-Webster, is a comprehensive conception or apprehension of the world especially from a specific standpoint.
Everyone has a private worldview. We begin to assemble it in infancy, and it undergoes continuous transformation throughout all of our experiences. As a spice transforms a dish and becomes a part of it, so does every experience transform one’s worldview and becomes part of it.
Although one’s worldview is constantly changing, it is unique. Every new experience is filtered through our individual worldview before entering into it. Your worldview and mine may intersect through the sharing of experience, but each performs its own unique transformation.
All worldviews contain a religious component, either sacred or secular, usually some combination of both. The sacred version includes a belief in some god, the secular one does not1.
The Oxford Dictionary defines a secular definition as “a
b. It's the backdrop because football is considered a religion worldwide and the most viewed game.
c. We've been told time and again that cricket is a religion in India.