Am I certain God exists?

Are you absolutely certain God exists?

I would answer yes or no depending on the context and what they mean by the question.

If, with God, you mean reality as it is, then yes, I am certain God exists. For me, God is a name for the fullness of reality as it is.

If, with God, you mean any of the images that humans have created of God, including the images I have of God, then I am equally certain God does not exist as these images says. God and reality can never be captured by any of our ideas about it.

That means that when I say reality as it is, I am fully aware that it’s different from any of my ideas about it.

God and reality is always more than and different from my ideas about it.

That’s why I don’t really trust these kinds of surveys. How can I know what people meant when they answered what they did? When I have answered surveys, I am pretty sure my answers often come from a different place than how they are interpreted.

At the same time, it is likely that many people in Europe and North America answer this question based on Christian images of God. They probably understood it to mean: Are you certain Christian images of God are accurate? If that’s the question, I would answer: I am certain they are not accurate. Just as I am certain no mental representation about anything is accurate.

It’s not about God or not, it’s about the relationship between our mental representations and reality.

Thoughts are questions about the world. They help this human self orient and navigate in the world. They have practical value only, and a limited and temporary value.

That means my mental representations about anything: an apple, my parents, my spouse, my best friends, myself, situations, my nature, the nature of reality, and anything else.

When I say I am certain, it’s because of the phrasing of the survey question. In that context, I can say I am certain no mental representation is ultimately accurate. At the same time, they are more or less accurate in a limited and conventional everyday sense. It’s not one or the other.

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