Believing in God

Beth Hollins
Mind Map by , created over 4 years ago

Mind Map on Believing in God, created by Beth Hollins on 05/07/2015.

Beth Hollins
Created by Beth Hollins over 4 years ago
Religious Studies: Unit 1- Believing in God.
Emily Davenport
Khadijah Mohammed
Khadijah Mohammed
An Inspector Calls
Georgia 27
Specific topic 7.6 Timber (processes)
T Andrews
Key Terms - Believing in God
Key Terms - Religion and community cohesion
Key Terms - Marriage and the family
Key Terms - Matters of life and death
Khadijah Mohammed
Believing in God
1 Religious Upbringing
1.1 Sacraments
1.1.1 Sacraments are milestones in the Christian (mainly Catholic) Church. There are seven sacraments, many of which may lead to or affirm belief in God. Baptism The first sacrament; during baptism, a child's parents will promise to bring up that child as a Christian. This means that the child will be continually encouraged to believe in God. Eucharist The Eucharist, or Communion, is a regular sacrament usually taken at the end of each Mass. This may lead to a belief in God, as taking part in the Eucharist will make a child feel like a part of the Church community, which will motivate them to learn more about the Christian faith. Reconciliation Reconciliation involves repentance and confession, which is then followed by forgiveness. Through this, a child will learn Christian teachings on forgiveness, which may lead them to believe that an all-loving God must exist. Confirmation Confirmation is the commitment made by an older child (usually towards the end of primary school) to the Church and to Christianity. As part of this, children are required to study Christianity, which involves learning reasons to believe in God. Some people also claim to have had a religious experience during the confirmation ceremony.
1.2 Church
1.2.1 Christian parents will take their children to church, where they will see other Christians worshipping. This may lead them to believe in God, as they will see others who believe in God, and so believe that such a belief is normal.
1.2.2 Most churches run Sunday schools, which teach children about God and why they should believe in Him.
1.3 Prayer
1.3.1 Christian parents will teach their children how to pray. This may lead to belief in God, as a child might believe that their parents would not pray if there was no God to pray to.
2 Religious Experiences
2.1 Prayer
2.1.1 If a person prays for something and then gets what they asked for, they may believe that God has heard their prayer and answered it.
2.2 Miracles
2.2.1 If an occurrence appears to break the laws of science, a person may believe that only God could have caused it.
2.3 Numinous
2.3.1 If a person believes that they can sense the presence of something greater than them, then they may believe that this presence is God.
2.4 Conversion
2.4.1 If a person experiences a life changing event, they may believe that this is a sign or message from God.
2.4.2 An example of this is the conversion of St Paul.
3 The Design Argument
3.1 The Design Argument suggests that:
3.1.1 1) the world shows a wealth of complex design, such as DNA or the structure of the eye. 2) If something shows design, someone or something must have designed it. 3) The designer of the world must be God; therefore, God exists.
3.2 An example of the Design Argument is Paley's watch theory, in which William Paley argues that the design of a watch is so intricate that it could not have come into being on its own - someone must have designed it. Similarly, the world itself must have a designer: God.
3.3 Some non religious people may argue that:
3.3.1 There is also lack of design in the world, such as natural disasters and genetic diseases.
3.3.2 Evidence of design can be explained by science.
3.3.3 The Universe may have a designer, but it does not mean that this designer is God.
4 Science
4.1 Scientific explanations of how the Universe came to be dispute the Genesis creation story, and therefore the existence of God.
4.1.1 Evolution The fossil record supports the idea that each species developed over millions of years. The existence of variation and genetic mutations among species supports Darwin's theory of Natural Selection.
4.1.2 The Big Bang Theory The Doppler Effect (Red Shift) is evidence that the Universe is expanding. The existence of cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR) supports the Big Bang Theory.
5 The Cosmological Argument
5.1 The Cosmological Argument proposes that:
5.1.1 1) There is clear evidence of the nature of cause and effect in the world, such as a car stopping when the brakes are applied. 2) Nothing can cause its own existence, and so it follows that the Universe must have a First Cause. 3) This cause must be God; therefore, God exists.
5.2 Some non religious people may argue that:
5.2.1 The Universe may have a first cause, but this cause does not have to be God.
5.2.2 If everything must have a cause, does God not also need a cause?
6 Religious Responses to Science
6.1 Some Christians believe that Science is wrong because:
6.1.1 They believe that God created the world in a way which made it look like it was already billions of years old when it was formed. This is called the "Apparent Age" theory.
6.1.2 They believe that evidence for the Big Bang and evolution can be explained by the effects of Noah's flood.
6.2 Some Christians believe that the scientific causes of the world were orchestrated by God, because:
6.2.1 The Big Bang had to occur at exactly the right time and in exactly the right way in order to form the Universe, and they believe that only God has the power to cause this to happen.
6.2.2 The formation of the Universe was highly dependent on the laws of science, and they believe that only God could have put these into place.
7 Evil and Suffering
7.1 Natural Evil
7.1.1 Natural evil is evil and suffering which is not caused by humans, such as natural disasters. A person may believe that natural evil disproves the existence of God because it shows flaws in the world's design, as well as causing suffering to large numbers of innocent people - something an omnibenevolent God would not want to do.
7.2 Moral Evil
7.2.1 Moral evil is evil and suffering which is caused by humans, such as bullying. Some people believe that moral evil disproves the existence of God because an omnibenevolent God would not want people to suffer, and an omnipotent God would have the power to stop people from committing crimes or causing pain to others.
7.3 Some people respond to the Christian idea that suffering is sent by God to test people's faith by pointing out that an omniscient God would already know how faithful each person was, so would not need to test them.
8 Religious Responses to Evil and Suffering
8.1 Many religious people argue that evil and suffering does not disprove the existence of God because:
8.1.1 They believe that God gave humans free will, and so moral evil is the result of people's choices, and not of God himself.
8.1.2 They believe that God wants them to follow the example of Jesus by helping those who suffer, as Jesus taught that Christians should fight evil and suffering.
8.1.3 They claim that life on Earth is a preparation for life in Heaven, and that those who suffer will be rewarded after they die.
8.1.4 They believe that God sends evil and suffering as a test of a person's faith.
8.1.5 They believe that God's knowledge is infinite, and that humans cannot possibly understand His reasons for creating evil and suffering in the world.
9 Unanswered Prayers
9.1 Some people may say that unanswered prayers disprove the existence of God, because:
9.1.1 Christianity teaches that God hears all prayers, so if a person's prayer goes unanswered, they may believe that there is no God to have heard their prayer in the first place.
9.1.2 If a Christian does not feel God's presence when praying, they may begin to wonder whether or not God really exists.
9.2 Some Christians may argue that unanswered prayers do not disprove God's existence, because:
9.2.1 If a person's prayer is selfish, it would not truly be in their best interests for it to be answered. An omniscient God would know this.
9.2.2 They believe that God may have different plans for that person, and so will not interfere with these by answering a deviant prayer.
9.2.3 They believe that God's knowledge far supersedes their own, and so God will judge whether what a person asks for is truly what they need, and answer prayers accordingly.
10 The Media and Belief in God
11 Example Exam Questions
11.1 Part A.
11.1.1 What is the meaning of omniscient?
11.1.2 What is atheism?
11.1.3 What is the definition of a miracle?
11.2 Part B.
11.2.1 Do you believe that God is the cause of the world? Give two reasons for your answer.
11.2.2 Do you think that religious experiences prove the existence of God?
11.3 Part C.
11.3.1 Explain how evil and suffering can lead to a disbelief in God.
11.3.2 Explain how a religious upbringing can lead to, or support, a belief in God.
11.4 Part D.
11.4.1 "Science proves that God did not create the Universe" i) Do you agree? Give reasons for your opinion. ii) Give reasons why some people may disagree with you.

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