Where was God at Sandy Hook?

Randy Newman told us years ago the universe is like this. It doesn’t make it any easier to stomach.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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4 Responses to Where was God at Sandy Hook?

  1. I love that song! He’s got another song, too, called “Political Science” that sort of puts it all on the line.

    “Y’all must be crazy!” says the LORD. Well, we are! We choose to believe things that offend our own sense of reason and the resulting cognitive dissonance drives us nuts.

    It amuses me, and troubles me, and just plain pisses me off that every time we suffer some sort of unspeakable horror or another (which we do with nauseatingly regularity) folks get into all sorts of “discussions” around the questions, “Is there a God?”, “Is God good?”, and “Does it make sense to put one’s faith in God?” If these discussions were merely a waste of time it would be bad enough, but the worst part of it is that the discussions generate all kinds of bizarre beliefs that folks use to shield themselves from the truth.

    “It is what it is.” Impeccably logical — but it takes a tremendous amount of courage to believe it.

    • Santi Tafarella says:

      In Sophocles’s Oedipus Rex, Oedipus plucks out his eyes. The courage to look at the world without blinders is easier said than done.

  2. The real problem is that the majority of mankind has fallen prey to the myth of an actual “God” to fix or prevent problems, because they themselves can not, do not, or will not accept responsibility for their own actions. As a result, when someone else commits an act that they find unacceptable, they ask why did “God” allowed such a thing as this. Is that not in and of itself the answer to the question? I saw something a few days ago on the news in which a mother, friends, family, etc., were praying to “God” for the safe return of an abducted child. For those of you so inclined to do the same, do you think that your all knowing all seeing “God” is going to smack himself (or herself or itself) in the head and say “Jeez, so sorry, missed that one. Now that you are praying I will get right on it. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.” When is this fairytale going to end?

    • Santi Tafarella says:

      On atheism, though, free will is not really a coherent concept. If the universe consists of atoms and void and nothing else, whence free will? If the atoms are moving randomly, then your moments of free will and choice are based in chance, and if they are moving in lockstep in reaction to one another, then your moments of choice are determined.

      Free will is, ultimately, a religious concept. You need ghosts, souls, and essences created by God to get free will. Atomism, however powerful for science, is a big crap for the legal system.

      But your point is well taken about prayer. So long as the world is a furnace and people can get burned, prayer and philosophizing will be coping mechanisms, however desperate.


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