Loki’s Wager and the Folly of the God Debate

By a show of hands, how many of you are familiar with Loki?

And no, I’m not talking about the Marval character….

Loki was one of the countless players in the celestial pantheon of Norse mythology. According to the Scandivanian legend, Loki made a bet with a group of dwarves. The conditions were agreed that if Loki lost the wager, he would be forced to relinquish his head. As a result, Loki was defeated. When the dwarves arrived to claim their spoil, Loki was more than willing to gave up his head, however, he insisted that the dwarves not extract any part of his neck. The dwarves conceded to Loki’s request.

However, there was one problem. The dwarves couldn’t pinpoint the line that separated the neck from the head. They agreed that certain parts were obviously the head and certain part were the neck, but where one ended and the other began was an unresolvable conundrum. In conclusion, Loki, through his shrewd request, managed to keep his head.

The story of Loki reminds me of debates and discussions revolving around the existence of God. As a lapsed Catholic-turned-Pastafarian, I think those debates are utterly pointless. I’d rather watch grass grow.

The problem with the God debate is the vague, incoherent definition assigned to this entity called ‘God’. Theists repetitively assert that ‘God’ is beyond all space and time. That ‘He’ is an ‘supernatural’ being dwelling outside the boundaries of logic, reason and science.

I don’t see how anyone could engage in a rational discourse centered on proving the existence of an entity that allegedly exists ‘outside the boundaries of logic, reason, and science’. It just seems to be a convenient  tactic of moving the goalposts in order to prevent a logically-sound argument from potentially poking holes in the existence of that entity.

I have no problem with anyone harboring a steadfast belief in God, whatever god that might be. In a world rife with natural disasters, diseases, wars, and orangutans running for political office, it’s comforting to seek refuge in an omnibenevolent celestial superhero. However, an emotional inclination should never be confused for rationality.


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