TED Conversations

Bernard White


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Can God be defined?

I find that after debating with many people, many don't have a definition of what "God" is. (For even when you go to a church many people have different definitions ; and not many have a "shared definition".) And I find that many people only list Gods, but (and correct me if I am wrong) that listing gods is just like listing various variations of Meats or dogs, you still haven't told me what a "dog" or a "meat" is! Or for that matter : What "God" is!
Also on the same matter, I am genially interested, what is the definition of "existence"?
Because these two issues are vital to the debate : "Does God exist?"
And I hope this question will be taken in good spirit, and that no offence is taken.

Strongly recommend you join my debate on this ( Can we ever design an experiment which can determine whether God exist or not?) on this link : http://www.ted.com/conversations/17451/can_we_ever_design_an_experime.html


Closing Statement from Bernard White

God mostly only have subjective definitions. (And very few have a "shared (objective) definition" of what "God" is!) And usually reflects the moral code of that individual! (And the society's values).
Yet God does hold many mystical properties, and is sometimes defined as emotions such as "Love", which is dependent on the human mind and relies in all of us.
While others choose to define God as being more of a "Personal God", which is external (independent) to the body, A God of intervention.
And other choose to define God as a more of a Impersonal God, one of pure logic and maths. (If I can say that!)
However I will not comment much more, due to the fact that I have a feeling I would not do a good job of it!
This is my closing comment. :D
Hope you liked it!

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  • Apr 6 2013: I think that each and every one of us has our personal definition of "God". Some of us might be able to put it eloquently into words, some of us may have to explain in gestures, there are others who might just fall into silence realizing that they have never thought of God as having to be defined before, and some opts to define God stereotypically, and the list goes on forever. If you're asking for an exact definition, I honestly do not think there is one. And in truth, those who believe in God(or gods) do not necessarily need one. but if your question is 'can God be defined?' my answer would have to be yes. personally, the existence of God coincides with my faith. God is the sum of my experiences, perspectives and faith. It is easier to say that who I am gives me the answer to what is God, and how I define Him.
    Additionally, I feel like after a certain point in life you just realize that it is not important if you can define God, and you no longer questions his existence because something inexplicable has grown within yourself. and that we look into ourselves to find the answers rather than elsewhere. I hope that makes sense, and I apologize if my response is a bit off-topic somehow. Thanks for bringing this argument up.
    • Apr 6 2013: Hi There!
      I understand what you mean. We and It become 'entangled'. It becomes difficult (and unimportant) to try to figure out where It ends and we begin. And that is what It and we really want!

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