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Where was God in Aurora massacre?
Twelve crosses comprise a makeshift memorial near the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater, scene of last week’s mass shooting
July 24th, 2012
02:13 PM ET

Where was God in Aurora massacre?

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Where was God in Aurora?

It’s a fresh take on an age-old question: Why does God allow suffering, natural disasters or - if you believe in it - evil?

We put the question to Twitter on Tuesday and got some starkly different responses.

“In short, God was in complete control, exercising His will,” wrote @PastorRileyF, who leads a church in Bethune, Colorado.

That riled @TheTrivia Jockey, who tweeted, “If that was God's will, God is definitely not deserving of my worship.”

Watch: Survivor of massacre says he forgives gunman

@trentpayne also took issue with the Colorado pastor: "I'm going to respectfully disagree with you Pastor. God gives free will to man, but it wasn't his will that they die."

The back-and-forth provoked other believers to chime in on the theological issue of God’s sovereignty vs. human free will, with many Christians seeking to explain how a sovereign God could preside over seemingly senseless bloodshed.

“It is not God's will or want that people died in Aurora,” wrote @GospelBluesman 20m. "God allowed man's inhumanity to man, rather than intervene.”

The conversation and debate continued in the comments section of this post, with some insinuating that the massacre might be a kind of divine punishment, or at lease divine neglect:

Lenny
We as a country have been telling God to go away. We told him to get off our currency, get out of our schools, get out of our Pledge of Allegiance, take your Ten Commandments out of our courthouses, get those Bibles out of hotels and no graduation ceremonies in our churches. How can we expect God to give us his blessing and his protection if we demand that he leave us alone?

Jesse R
Liberals have made it impossible for God to be anywhere during the upbringing of a child. Can't have any religious connotations in schools, libraries, government offices, etc., etc. Young men (and women) are growing up with no real sense of right and wrong. ... We no longer have the right of religion, but rather the right from religion. Parents no longer have the ability to discipline their children. We are always looking for the excuses ... violent video games and movies, bad teachers and schools ... when we should be looking in the mirror. We as a society are the reasons these massacres happen. We have allowed our children to become social misfits that lead to the kind of carnage we have seen on several occasions since religion and God disappeared from what the Founding Fathers once said was a necessity of a successful democracy ... faith.

Lots of readers used religious takes on the shooting to challenge the whole idea of God:

Who invited me?
How do you know the people that were killed didn't go to hell?, and how exactly does any of this show there is a reason? Reason is obviously something that you have replaced with belief, and you threw out logic with it.

Kyle
"God doesn't exist, so he wasn't anywhere. Get over it. A man was evil, and he was evil because he was crazy.

Plenty of others said the shooting was the devil's work:

Harleyxx
Evil things like this happen because Satan is the god of this world ... for the time being. God will undo all the damage caused by Satan's rebellion and man's disobedience when the time is right. In the meantime we all experience trials and tribulation due to living in an ungodly world. That is why Jesus taught his followers the Lord's Prayer ... 'to pray for God's kingdom to come.'

What’s your take? Where was God in the Aurora massacre? Or do you feel that such tragedies are evidence for a godless universe?

Let us know in comments, and we’ll highlight the best ones.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: God • Violence

soundoff (10,690 Responses)
  1. G. Zeus Kreiszchte

    20th comment to advance to next page.....

    July 26, 2012 at 11:08 am |
  2. Thom

    To do nothing in the face of need is the most basic form of evil. Neither Satan nor God did anything to protect the lives of these people. How many people cry out 'Please God, don't let me die.' and die anyway at the hands of some psychopath? I am sure some of those victims did the same. Called out to a divine creator who, despite his/her/it's supreme power, did nothing to save them. This leads me to ponder many things. Is God evil? Or simply doesn’t care? Does he lack the power we assume he has? And if this is his plan, to let you die anyway the chips may fall and do nothing to stop it, then what is the point to life in the first place? Or perhaps the better question to ask is, in light of all this, is there a God at all?
    I know this much; if someone called out to me for help when their life was in danger and I could save their life with minimal effort? I would. It is the right thing to do.

    July 26, 2012 at 11:04 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      So God is like your spiritual concierge?

      July 26, 2012 at 11:07 am |
    • Thom

      Bill, I think you missed the point.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
  3. Reality

    Where was god when the following acts of horror and terror took place???????

    The Twenty (or so) Worst Things People Have Done to Each Other:
    M. White, http://necrometrics.com/warstatz.htm#u (required reading)

    The Muslim Conquest of India

    "The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

    Rank …..Death Toll ..Cause …..Centuries……..(Religions/Groups involved)*

    1. 63 million Second World War 20C (Christians et al and Communists/atheists vs. Christians et al, Nazi-Pagan and "Shintoists")

    2. 40 million Mao Zedong (mostly famine) 20C (Communism)

    3. 40 million Genghis Khan 13C (Shamanism or Tengriism)

    4. 27 million British India (mostly famine) 19C (Anglican)

    5. 25 million Fall of the Ming Dynasty 17C (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Chinese folk religion)

    6. 20 million Taiping Rebellion 19C ( Confucianism, Buddhism and Chinese folk religion vs. a form of Christianity)

    7. 20 million Joseph Stalin 20C (Communism)

    8. 19 million Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C (Islam)

    9. 17 million Timur Lenk 14C-15C

    10. 16 million Atlantic Slave Trade 15C-19C (Christianity)

    11. 15 million First World War 20C (Christians vs. Christians)

    12. 15 million Conquest of the Americas 15C-19C (Christians vs. Pagans)

    13. 13 million Muslim Conquest of India 11C-18C

    14. 10 million An Lushan Revolt 8C

    15. 10 million Xin Dynasty 1C

    16. 9 million Russian Civil War 20C (Christians vs Communists)

    17. 8 million Fall of Rome 5C (Pagans vs. Pagans)

    18. 8 million Congo Free State 19C-20C (Christians)

    19. 7½ million Thirty Years War 17C (Christians vs Christians)

    20. 7½ million Fall of the Yuan Dynasty 14C

    July 26, 2012 at 11:02 am |
    • matt in nw

      I know alot of those are best estimates, but seeing that without all the "oh yeah well you guys did this!" kinda puts things in perspective. thanks for this:)

      July 26, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
  4. Atheist Keep Out

    God is everywhere and everyone but for atheists.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:59 am |
    • Tallulah13

      If only you had any proof at all that your god even exists. All you have is your belief that your god is everywhere, the same belief held by those who worshipped Zeus, Osiris, Odin and all the rest of the thousands of gods worshipped by humanity.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:10 am |
    • ironic but true

      The strong proof of God is you (atheists).

      July 26, 2012 at 11:17 am |
    • Tallulah13

      What an incredibly lame commen, ironic. By that logic, christians are the proof that Zeus exists.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:32 am |
    • Robert

      So by your (logic?) my disbelief in unicorns proves their existence?
      And you wonder why we don't just fall down and admit we're wrong.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
  5. Rainer Braendlein

    Nobody can protect people which have already been murdered, and thus our discussion is somewhat meaningless.

    Why don't we discuss about the issue of Boko Haram and Al-Shabab, gangs which perpetually murder guiltless Africans.

    Why don't we use our brain, in order to invent methods to exterminate these Muslim ba-stards (only the gang members)?

    We discuss about dead people instead of protecting the living ones. Ain't that ridiculous?

    Let's go to Nigeria and Kenya and save some lifes. I mean that seriously.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • Who invited me?

      yes rainman
      lets save some lives by killing people.
      Same mindset of the people who flew planes into the twin towers
      same mindset of the people who blew up the trains in london
      same thinking of all the radical religious zealots of the world.
      Same thinking of the crusades
      same thinking again, and again, and again.
      Take a step back.... can't you see that oit is the RELIGIONS that are the real true evil
      Rainman, can't you see it is people like you that ARE the problem?

      July 26, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      @Who invited me?

      Sorry, you are such a fool. It is no sin to kill murderers, but even a duty.

      Never true Christians used the sword or the gun to spread their religion. Only the idiotic Muslim leaders and Catholic popes used weapons, to spread their supersti-tions.

      I am a Protestant – we don't spread Christianity by weapons, but by mission. The Crusades were ordered by the evil pope (Western Antichrist), which is the leader of the Catholic Church which has turned apostate from true Christianity.

      If there would be Catholic gangs killing guiltless people I would also try to exterminate them.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Who invited – – Same mindset used to justify Hiroshima which did in fact same thousands of U.S. servicemen's lives, possibly someone in your family.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Who invited me?

      I am completely serious Rainman.
      Get help.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • Who invited me?

      Bill
      Hiroshima did not happen because of religious fanatics.
      Read rainmans rants and you can see he is motivated by his religion.
      Combine religion with military/ violent force and you have an extremely volatile mixture.

      Just read where he claims to be protestant and would not raise up weapons, then turns right around and wants to "exterminate"
      His mind is ill, and he needs help.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Robert

      True Christians most certainly did spread their faith by the sword. To deny this makes you wither incredibly ignorant or willfully dishonest.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
  6. Oz in OK

    Where was God during the Holocaust?
    Where was God during the Armenian massacres?
    Where was God during the ethnic cleansing massacres around the world?

    On and on and on... the question is always asked, with no clear answer. Maybe, instead of always asking that question, we should be asking 'How can we show love and favor to our fellow citizens when these horrible things happen? How can we help ease the pain?' Perhaps if Christians focused more on those questions, instead of rushing to defend their deity/blaming someone 'else' for the misery caused in this world, this wouldn't be happening so often.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:42 am |
  7. Heaveninc

    The question is where was God in Holmes. God was everywhere else in Aurora helping each other.. None of this was God's plans this was Holmes plans, and because all of us humans live together we have to deal with Godless, soulless people. God is Love. There was no Love in Holmes.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • indogwetrust

      Sky Fairy is everywhere.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:41 am |
    • TR6

      "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things." (Isaiah 45:7)

      July 26, 2012 at 11:13 am |
  8. indogwetrust

    If Sky Fairy didn't create the universe who did?

    July 26, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Why does the universe need a creator?

      July 26, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • Robert

      it's funny how so many can't accept a creatorless universe but they can accept a creatorless creator. Illogical.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • AndriconBoy

      Ahura Mazda did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Chronos did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Allah did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Ra did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Some of The Elder Gods did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Marduk did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Jehovah did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      A Giant Flying Purple Magic Talking Cactus did. It was written in a book, therefore it must be true.

      Oh, wait…
      Kanye West did. He has pretty much thinks he did, and I’m sure he has written it down in his diary, therefore it must be true.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • PrimeNumber

      The universe as it is needs a beginning point. This beginning point was postulated by Georges Lemaitre. He convinced Albert Einstein that the universe was expanding.
      So it was FATHER Georges Lemaitre, a Belgian Roman Catholic priest who first proposed the Big Bang theory. This is not convenient. Is it?

      July 26, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • Who invited me?

      why does the universe as it is need a beginning point?
      The big bang did happen, but there are many theories as to what happened before it.
      Current M theory indicates that this was not the first big bang, nor will it be the last.
      The prevailing hypothesis in this is that the big bang happened when two branes of string collided, causing all of the chaos (for lack of a better term) that followed.
      That is what can happen when dimensions collide.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:45 am |
    • PrimeNumber

      @Robert " it's funny how so many can't accept a creatorless universe but they can accept a creatorless creator. Illogical."
      God does not exist as a tree, a rock, or an atheist does. For those things, there is a "was", a "now", and a "tomorrow".
      God does not exist – He is the source of all existence. For God, there is no past, present, or future. Only an eternal Now. God sees all time as though an open book.

      Logic is very nice. But it is a useless tool when applied to an absolutely ABSTRACT being.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:46 am |
    • Who invited me?

      prime
      or an imaginary being

      July 26, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • TrueBlueCatholic

      Yahweh, who sent his son Jesus to us to aid in our salvation did.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:27 am |
    • TR6

      @PrimeNumber: “The universe as it is needs a beginning point”

      If your god doesn’t need a beginning point neither does the universe

      July 26, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
  9. AndriconBoy

    Xtians will tell you that “everything is according to God’s plan.”
    Therefore God was the orchestrator of this event. It was God’s plan for a disturbed Holmes to walk into a packed theatre, pull out some guns, and blast holes in the heads and torsos of dozens of people and cover the witnesses in their blood and brains.
    It was God’s plan to have these innocent people be violently injured and die, pointlessly taking someone from this world, and leaving their friends and family to grieve in confusion over such a senseless action.
    It’s all “part of God’s plan,” just like the pain, death, and suffering that God orchestrates on the rest of the planet. When something good happens, it’s “God’s will.” When something bad happens, it’s because “God works in mysterious ways.”

    God was there. This was “God’s plan.” God is a sick, psychotic madman. Why would anyone worship that?
    Benevolent creator who is responsible for all the pain, suffering, death, and violence in the world, who is strangely powerless or indifferent to stop it as soon as people are not comfortable acknowledging that it their God’s fault.

    Can we stop believing in such childish and socially damaging things? Can we please stop praying for someone to save us and start saving ourselves?

    July 26, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • indogwetrust

      Sky Fairy loves you too. Sky Fairy loves everyone.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • nottolate

      "Xtians will tell you that '“everything is according to God’s plan.”' Therefore God was the orchestrator of this event"

      Not this Christian. This Christian will tell you the truth. God is in no way obligated to come to the aid of his enemies (that would be all of you). He's not obligated to step in and help you rebels. It was not in God's plan that it occurred, but he was not obligated to stop it either unless it interferes with his providence. You guys think you're important and you're really not. The only folks who are important are his elect.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • AndriconBoy

      @ nottolate

      Congratulations, you are a heretic in the eyes of your own religion and will burn in eternal torment.
      Lucky for you it's all a bunch of garbage, so there's no real danger.
      Maybe you should stop acting as if it's real – since you can't prove a lick of it – so you stop looking like an id10t.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • nottolate

      @AndriconBoy

      "Congratulations, you are a heretic in the eyes of your own religion and will burn in eternal torment."

      You care to qualify that claim? That is if you can. You don't even know the definition of heresy. The truth hurts don't it? You're going to look pretty dumb not being able to come up with a scripture verse to bolster your claim

      July 26, 2012 at 10:46 am |
    • Get Real

      nottolate, "You don't even know the definition of heresy."

      Opinions from someone who doesn't even know the difference between the words "to" and "too" in his/her screen name are given very little credence.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • Eric

      "Not this Christian. This Christian will tell you the truth. God is in no way obligated to come to the aid of his enemies (that would be all of you). He's not obligated to step in and help you rebels. It was not in God's plan that it occurred, but he was not obligated to stop it either unless it interferes with his providence. You guys think you're important and you're really not. The only folks who are important are his elect."

      So you know the hearts and souls of these people?? You know that the 12 killed and 58 wounded were all godless heathens who had turned their back? Including the 6 yo little girl who knew nothing but what her parents had told her?

      How dare you to assume that you arrogant, ignorant SOB.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:35 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What Eric said.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • AndriconBoy

      Well, nottolate, I submitted my point to nottolate and pressed "Post," but they're not showing up. Every time I try to post them again, I get a message saying I "already posted that."

      So I guess "God" doesn't want me to waste my time butchering you by pointing out your ignorance, hypocrisy, and mindlessness.
      Just as well. I can't imagine you ever making a point that wasn't above the intellect of a 4th grader.

      Go ahead and chalk this up as a win for you, because frankly, I don't care. I know you're wrong, and I'm the only person who needs to know it.
      Have a secular day.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:19 pm |
    • Helpful Hints

      AndriconBoy, "I get a message saying I "already posted that."

      All you need to do in that case is to change one tiny thing in the post and post again.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:23 pm |
    • nottolate

      @Get Real

      "Opinions from someone who doesn't even know the difference between the words "to" and "too" in his/her screen name are given very little credence."

      Let's see, what' more important and of consequence, a screen name or things eternal? You probably don't even know.

      July 26, 2012 at 7:10 pm |
  10. nottolate

    "Where was God in Aurora massacre?"

    I don't understand the question. What, do you think you belong to him or sump? You belong to Satan. Why would he come to the aid of rebels?

    July 26, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • Robert

      The list of things you don't understand is surpassed only by the list of things you're willing to accept to make your myth work.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      WTH are you saying???

      July 26, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • nottolate

      @Robert,

      "The list of things you don't understand is surpassed only by the list of things you're willing to accept to make your myth work."

      Care to name on of em? Just one if you can. It is you who don't understand you're looking at the cold hard facts.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:59 am |
    • nottolate

      @TruthPrevails,

      What I am saying is every single ever born (with the exception of Jesus) has been born into Satan's camp. As such, every single person born is born a rebel and an enemy God. Of these, God chooses some to call his own. So why should God come to the aid of career criminals and rebels?

      July 26, 2012 at 11:05 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What career criminals and rebels were killed in Aurora?

      July 26, 2012 at 11:20 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Are you really saying that a six-year-old girl was a "career criminal" and was "born into Satan's camp"?

      July 26, 2012 at 11:22 am |
    • ..

      Tom, the one who wants to burn down restaurants coz their CEO said something he/she disagrees with is one to speak.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:34 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      @.. Go sit on the Stupid Bench. Here, moron, watch this and see if you can figure out the point:

      July 26, 2012 at 11:36 am |
    • ..

      I am a troll who never managed to finish high school. I think I'm quite funny and insightful, coz I'm dumber than a box of hair.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:39 am |
  11. ArthurP

    The 2nd Amendment like the Bible is an anachronism. Scrap them both.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Yeah let's just discard anything western civilization is based on.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • SaveTheUSA

      a

      July 26, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • SaveTheUSA

      why keep the U S C o n s t i t u t i o n? It too is 200 years old.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  12. Rainer Braendlein

    "Where was God in Aurora massacre?"

    Obama had the power to exterminate the Muslim gangs Al-Shabab and Boko Haram. Nobody blames him for not doing that neglecting his duties as a ruler.

    Everybody blames God for a crime he is not responsible for. It is possible to exterminate criminal gangs, but it is not possibel, not even for God, to prevent every single man who lives on earth from doing evil, because that would mean total surveillance instead of freedom.

    Ain't we a crazy mankind?

    Possibly, if the American society would be more caring which is also a thing which Obama could promote Holmes maybe had not committed the massacre.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:16 am |
    • Who invited me?

      rainman
      I don't know where you get these ramblings but you are in need of some serious psychological assistance.
      Get help rainman, its not too late.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      @Who invited me?

      If you don't regard it as necessary to protect the guiltless people of Nigeria and Kenya which are threatened by Boko Haram and Al-Shabab, you are as criminal as they are and nobody will invite you for a dinner in heaven together with the King of righteousness.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • Who invited me?

      there you go again, passing rainmans judgement on the world.
      Oh darn, I don't get to go to a fict i tious dinner with fict i tious figments of your imagination.
      That's OK...since there will only be imaginary food there anyway.
      Your mind is sick rainman, you think that just because someone has a power, they MUST use that power, to the way YOU think it should be used. That is a form of psychosis, and you really should see someone about that.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:39 am |
  13. Colin

    Actually Mike, you’ll find that most (ex-Christian) atheists don’t believe for one or more of the following reasons:

    The concept of an immortal being makes no sense to us.

    The concept of an all-powerful being makes no sense to us.

    The concept of an all-knowing being makes no sense to us.

    We tend to have a good working knowledge of the age, size and history of the Universe and the idea that a being would create the entire thing – with 400,000,000,000 galaxies, EACH with 100, 000,000,000 starts and even more planets, then sit back and wait 13,720,000,000 years for human beings to evolve on one planet so he could “love them” and send his son to talk about sheep and goats in Iron Age Palestine makes no sense to us.

    The answers usually proffered for what we see as basic logical flaws in Christianity – “you have been blinded by your lack of faith” “God moves in mysterious ways” “God is outside the Universe” or “our minds are too small to understand the greatness of God” are never satisfying to us. We see a retreat to mysticism as the first refuge of the cornered fool.

    The common argument, “well, what caused the Big Bang?” with the implication that, because we have only theories and no iron clad explanation for the Big Bang yet, [the Christian] god must have caused it – does not make sense to us. “I don’t know” does not equal “god” to us, much less the Judeo-Christian god. We feel the answers to such a question are much more likely to be found in Einstein’s equations, quantum physics, large particle accelerators and radio telescopes than in Genesis Chapters 1 through 20. We’re crazy aren’t we?

    We do not see miracles in things like tornadoes missing a certain trailer in a trailer park, cancer going into remission or Tim Tebow winning a football game.

    We understand that Christianity is one of many, many religions in the World, and we don’t think that we were lucky enough to have been born in the one part of the World that “got it right”.

    We tend to have a basic knowledge of history and know that there is nothing magical or special about the supposed history of the Jews, gospels, letters, apocalyptic story (Revelations) and other materials that found their way into the Bible, in that they are largely indistinguishable from the other mythology and religious writings of the time and region.

    Human beings are terrified of their own deaths and we see the various religious beliefs that try to “wish it away” such as reincarnation, living happily ever after in Heaven with Jesus, having your own Mormon planet etc. as nothing more than childish stories for the more naive, timid minds among us.

    We do not see morality as predicated upon a belief in the supernatural. We accept that one can be moral without believing in the supernatural and that doing so is no guaranty that one will conform to the norms of society that people call “morality”.

    “You can’t prove God doesn’t exist” is not a convincing argument to us, as in inability to disprove something is a far cry from it being true. We cannot prove that the Hindu gods Shiva or Vishnu do not exist either, nor Santa Claus for that matter, but that is hardly a reason to believe in them. It is almost always impossible to prove a negative in this sense.

    When one looks at the various Christian beliefs that were once firmly believed – Adam and Eve, Noah’s flood, people living to be 700 or 900 years old, the Red Sea splitting, water turning into wine, talking snakes, a man living in a whale’s belly, people rising from the dead, Jesus driving demons out of people and into pigs – but which are now acknowledged by most thinking people to be mere mythology, it is pretty hard to give a lot of credibility to what’s left.

    It is hard not to consider Christianity as based on circular reasoning. Most Christians believe in God because the Bible says so, then turn around and say they believe the Bible because it is the word of God. To draw an analogy, “I believe Obama is a great man because his biography says so, and the reason I believe his biography is that it is about Obama, who is a great man.”

    In short, the more one comes to understand mother nature, the less reason there is to believe in a god and the more one understands human nature, the more one sees why so many of us still do.

    So, the next time you proudly proclaim that you know the secrets to life, death, the origins of life on Earth and the origins of the Universe, because your parents or priest taught you some comforting stories from late Bronze Age Palestine as a sub-ten year-old, you might like to consider where your beliefs fit into the bigger picture.

    July 26, 2012 at 10:02 am |
    • tallulah13

      Beautifully said, Colin.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:07 am |
    • Eric

      Preach Colin... Preach.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:09 am |
    • Voice of Reason

      Colin

      I wish I could articulate a viewpoint as seamless as you. Very nicely done! It captures the points and delivers it without condescending tones.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:15 am |
    • Colin

      thanks tallulah13 and VoR.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:17 am |
    • PrimeNumber

      Apparently, one blunder is so vast that people – particularly atheists – can't see them. Colin has committed this blunder, which is: ASSUMING that all Reality is available through the five senses of the atheist, and that his Reason (praised be It) is adequate for understanding all of REality. Religious people are people of Faith. Atheists are people of Assumption.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • PrimeNumber

      Apparently, one blunder is so vast that people – particularly atheists – can't see it. Colin has committed this blunder, which is: ASSUMING that all Reality is available through the five senses of the atheist, and that his Reason (praised be It) is adequate for understanding all of REality. Religious people are people of Faith. Atheists are people of Assumption.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:20 am |
    • DREAM15X

      As a firm and devout Christian you can come up with many reasons to deny God and I have atheist and agnostic friends who feel such as you do. My only response for them is 'Is it such a bad thing that I hope and pray my friends and family are right beside me in the New Jerusalem AKA Heaven with my Heavenly Creator'?

      July 26, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      "Faith"= "pretending to know something you don't". Atheism is based on facts, especially tha fact that there is no evidence to support the belief in any god.. But do keep pretending...

      July 26, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • Whine of Treason

      @Voice, you said:

      "I wish I could articulate a viewpoint as seamless as you."

      You wish! LOL!

      July 26, 2012 at 10:27 am |
    • Rundvelt

      > Apparently, one blunder is so vast that people – particularly atheists – can't see it. Colin has committed this blunder, which is: ASSUMING that all Reality is available through the five senses of the atheist, and that his Reason (praised be It) is adequate for understanding all of REality. Religious people are people of Faith. Atheists are people of Assumption.

      First of all, it's not a blunder, you just haven't thought about it. We can only know things that we can observe. So, when we talk about the supernatural and things we cannot observe, we cannot know if it's true, and therefore, it's not knowledge.

      Second of all, there may be a better method of learning about reality then reason. However, we have yet to discover it, so it remains the gold standard.

      What's interesting is that religious people keep suggesting that we're worshipping science. We're not. We're simply using the best method we have available to learn about the universe. If you have a better method, please present it.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Robert

      What he said... 🙂
      Nicely articulated

      July 26, 2012 at 10:49 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      You have a very eloquent way of saying "I don't understand it"

      July 26, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Colin

      Feel free to enlighten me Bill as to what I am missing.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:18 am |
    • matt in nw

      Very well said Colin:)

      July 26, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  14. Eric

    After 203+ pages of this debate, it amazes me that people are still discussing the absence of God in the tragedy. Some of the comments (if not most), are narrow minded at best focused on the few who died. By no means am I attempting to belittle or demean the tragedy, but understand that man has walked this Earth for a very long time and has been witness to far more horrific tragedies than what happened in Colorado (i.e.: Volcanoes, Earthquakes, Wars, Plagues, Floods, etc. etc.) and the belief in a higher power has endured and will continue to endure. We cleaver 'apes' do ourselves a disservice by thinking that we are so advanced in our tools and reasoning, but how small we are in comparison to the creation of the Universes/Multiverses which exist. If you really where was God in Colorado... try to keep track of a single grain of sand amongst an ocean filled with sand. As precious as our lives are (and all life is precious), they pale in comparison in the width and breath of all that there is. All we have is each other. Lets try NOT to destroy what little we have.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:59 am |
  15. Tim Hartsel

    God gives man free-will, that is, He gives us the freedom to live our lives and make our choices without His involvment. What ever we do we do it on our own, but our actions usually represent our beliefs.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:59 am |
  16. Carl

    God was on a date with the Tooth Fairy.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:56 am |
    • justme

      whoever taught you to type should be removed. like your comment

      July 26, 2012 at 10:18 am |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      Why should it be removed?

      July 26, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      If just me and I share something in common it may be a sense of weariness over relentless references to tooth fairies and invisible sky creatures. I know you guys think you're funny and smart but this kind of stuff is really just childish. But hey, party on Wayne.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:22 am |
  17. Moby Schtick

    Neito

    That's my issue with the morality of the god of the bible. He is a "might makes right" god in that his "evil acts" are deemed good because of his ultimate power, and thus, he uses "subjective morality." - Exactly how the believer claims morality must be without a god.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:56 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Believer acknowledge that God's view is superior to man's though which gives Him license. Man's mistake is when he elevates his judgement to that of God

      July 26, 2012 at 11:24 am |
  18. The Jackdaw

    Collumbine High
    Va. Tech.
    Movie shooter was a PHD drop out

    Maybe somebody should ask why our education system is pushing people over the edge instead of blaming inert objects and God.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:54 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You're blaming mass shootings on the education system?

      Sure thing.

      I'll bet all the killers wore underpants. I contend that mass shootings are caused by ill-fitting tighty whities.

      July 26, 2012 at 9:58 am |
    • The Jackdaw

      At least underpants and our 30th-rate education system exist.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:06 am |
    • ..

      Tom, ya are one to speak. Ya left a comment in the article on chick-fil-A that the restaurants should be burnt coz the CEO upheld traidtional marriage. Pot calling the kettle black here.

      July 26, 2012 at 10:20 am |
    • ..

      See http tinyurl com cmoxv8x

      July 26, 2012 at 10:23 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      ..You are a moron. I left no such comment, you dimwit. Are you new here? Anyone can post under any name and that comment was posted by a troll who has a grudge.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:27 am |
    • ..

      So sez ya tommie

      July 26, 2012 at 11:35 am |
    • ..

      Feel free to disregard my posts; I'm a fvckwit.

      July 26, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
  19. Who invited me?

    http://theoatmeal.com/comics/religion?you_are_all_individuals

    To my non-believing friends and the believers that can take a joke, you may enjoy this.

    July 26, 2012 at 9:52 am |
    • Gohek

      I'm one of the ones who can take a joke, that was quite funny

      July 26, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • FYI..u'ren'tnvited

      Also, I am and I have been taking the two of you.

      July 26, 2012 at 11:05 am |
    • indogwetrust

      Sky fairy put my butthole on my forehead. Do I now look like a cyclop?

      July 26, 2012 at 11:10 am |
  20. Ashley

    I think that, unfortunately, bad things happen so good things can come from it. Sometimes it takes the life of one person to impact millions for the better. Who knows, though. That's just what I believe.

    RIP

    July 26, 2012 at 9:49 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.