Catholics/Another reality beyond God


Since nature comes up with  surprises that far exceed those that human imagination can generate doesn't that indicate there is a reality far beyond the limits of human knowledge and imagination? I do not think that unknowable reality is a delusion. Did not even atheist Richard Dawkins in his talk, titled, "Queerer Than We Suppose: The strangeness of science," suggest that the true nature of the universe eludes us, because the human mind evolved only to understand the "middle-sized" world we can observe."?

Actually if one accepts the presuppositions under which Dawkins is writing there is no reason why one should accept anything Dawkins has to say on anything. Dawkins claims are self-refuting.

Dawkins presupposes that feelings, emotions, etc are all just byproducts of the chemical reactions going on in our brains.  This means things like love, justice, mercy are all illusions.  It also means that freedom itself is an illusion.  Dawkins can't help being atheist because the chemical process going on in his mind causes him to think the way he does.  I cannot help being a theist for the same reason.

The minute Dawkins says "No, I choose to be an atheism because it is logical" he presupposes the existence of an entity that works and acts independently of the brain--something his world view will not allow.  In other words he refutes himself because now he is saying that the person can think and act independently from the chemical reactions going on inside their brains. If this is so--than the brain and the mind are related but two distinct realities.  

If it is impossible to understand the true nature of the universe why do people like Dawkins and Hawkins continue to seek to understand it? Again, his own statement is self refuting.  If it is impossible than why do people continue to try? The fact that people continue to try suggests that no one actually believes what Dawkins is saying even if they claim to embrace it.  Dawkins himself doesn't actually believe it--otherwise he would give up trying to pursue knowledge in the first place!

I am sorry--I didn't realize what your question was.

Yes, of course God is a reality beyond imagination.  We will never fully understand God because God is God.  God is not contingent, we are.  God is not limited, we are.  Eternal life is really nothing more than us contemplating the mystery of God.  For every part of God we understand there will be infinite more things we do not understand.  That is why we will never be board in heaven.

In other words--your observation--namely that God is totally beyond our imagination is precisely why heaven is heaven!


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Father Dave Bechtel


I am a Catholic priest in good standing and in active ministry in the Diocese of Scranton PA. I can answer most any question about the Catholic Faith, however my area of specialization is Systematic Theology. Systematic Theology is a branch of theology that focuses on the fundamental tenants of the Faith and the Dogmas of the Faith. I have specialization on the Reformation and Catholic vs. Protestant theology/issues and answering Protestant challenges to the Faith.


I was ordained in June of 2008. Since that time the thrust of my ministry has been specialized. In my first assignment I was an assistant pastor. A year later I was sent to work in education. I spent six (6) years in education and have now assumed my first pastorate. While education was the thrust of my ministry, nevertheless I continued to have a hand in parish ministry, hospital chaplaincy and prison chaplaincy. Now that I am out of education I will obviously be focusing more on parish work than specialized ministry. I have two years of formal Clinical Pastoral Education and prior to ordination I successfully pursued Board Certification for health care ministry through the NACC. My certification needs to be renewed and I plan to seek dual certification in health care ministry (NACC and APC) when I renew my certification. I have a breadth of experience working with Protestant ministers and collaborating with them to achieve the goals of hospital pastoral care and chaplaincy. These ministers run the spectrum from the liberal to the conservative.

Bachelors of Science-- University of Scranton PA Masters of Arts Theology--- Saint Mary's Seminary and University Baltimore MD Masters of Divinity--- Saint Charles Borremeo Seminary Philadelphia PA Board Certified Chaplain (up for renewal)

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