Last week in The Signal, three articles attempted to use logic to prove the existence of God. All three used unfounded, self-righteous Socratic banter in attempts to proselytize their readers.
Using the logic of these would-be theists, I was able to construct my own argument on the possibility that Hitler may have been justified in envisioning a master race.
In “Beyond Narnia – C.S. Lewis was a theological guide,” Mike McCaffery writes that would-be Christians who struggle with accepting their faith, “because of intellectual difficulties,” may find solace in Lewis’ writings as “Lewis can explain complicated and troubling doctrines better than most.”
The implicit message in this argument is that all beliefs are mutable through proper education and training.
To elaborate, humans must be willing to read and to accept opinions that differ drastically from their prior beliefs and pre-conceived notions of what is right and true.
Therefore, who is to say that the complicated and troubling doctrines put forth by Hitler are any less valid than those found in the Bible?
In the subsequent article by Todd Carter, “Proof of God can be found in core rational arguments,” the “Argument of Causality” is upheld as proof of God’s existence. Carter writes, “There is nothing that causes itself. The first cause cannot be of this world because then the world would be self-caused. So, the Creator must be outside natural understanding.”
Using this same argument, Hitler cannot have been entirely wrong because his beliefs, though founded on hatred and exclusion, had to originate from a pure source. Given that Hitler’s beliefs had to originate from somewhere, if you disagree with his views it’s probably because the roots of them are “outside natural understanding.”
Carter goes on to write, “I believe in a freedom of religion that allows people a freedom of conscience that allows them to understand God in whichever way they wish.” Had he phrased it “a freedom of conscience that allows people to perceive the world in whichever way they wish,” I would find it harder to compare his narrow-minded, self-righteous principles to those of the ultimate elitists – Nazis.
Carter’s subsequent contentions involve unattainable desire. He writes, “Without God, there are only three routes desire can take – oblivious optimism, jaded dissatisfaction or hedonism.”
I believe that desire is a uniquely human trait which may lead to personal fulfillment at attaining a goal, satisfying the human need to conquer, grow and strive to reach an envisioned ideal.
Without dissatisfaction, humans would not care to improve. Hitler understood that the negation of desire through religious contentment would cause a regression of society and be detrimental to the foundations of progress and success.
Carter’s final contention is phrased as a question, “If there is no god, then why would anyone be offended by another’s belief in a god?” Hitler may have answered that humans find satisfaction not through God, but through superiority. Therefore, to feel and thrive in ultimate superior satisfaction, a race may believe that it is above all others.
Thus, through Hitler’s beliefs, millions of people found an alternative method of attaining the inner peace often associated with the internalization of religious doctrines.
After reading two articles on why God/Hitler will bring people satisfaction, I was hesitant to read the third, “All the rights of man originate with a higher power” by Matt Esposito.
As it turns out, my hesitancy was well-founded as Esposito’s work was filled with glaring contradictions and the same faulty logic that yet again allowed me to apply his arguments on God’s existence to the validity of Hitler’s beliefs.
Exercising his God-given right to contradict himself, Esposito writes, “What good are rights if they are only guaranteed by the goodwill of politicians?! …. Moreover, if tradition dictates rights then we would never have gotten beyond the hunter-gatherer method of government in which the strongest rules.”
These are good ideas for sure, until he writes, “It would seem that the idea of having rights is an illusion. Yet, our founding fathers have left us something more. ‘We hold these truths to be self evident …'” Here I stopped reading, for in referencing the traditions set forth by our nation’s political founders to prove that rights are given by God, Esposito has negated his previously stated viewpoints.
In summation, Esposito does not answer, but instead raises the question, “Are we all really equal in every way?” and answers with, “No. Some of us are faster, stronger, smarter, more ruthless and more conniving.”
Reading this prompted me to ask a similar question: Are all people deserving of rights? Or are rights simply put in place by society to protect each individual and secure mankind as the dominant species on this planet?
That said, who is to deny the logical next step of delineating amongst humans; who deserves to receive rights and carry the human race to its full potential? Esposito believes that the rights we hold now are handed down by God. Hitler believed that rights could be manifested, taken and bent to suit the ‘betterment’ of society. Who is right?
I pray that in the future, people of all faiths and beliefs will be open-minded and accepting of all viewpoints, not just those who “God” finds acceptable. I pray that people will read this, not as a Nazi manifesto, but as a warning of the dangers of faulty logic and unfounded convictions.