Over a few drinks and greasy food, I sat with a friend and an acquaintance listening intently as the two discussed the complicated spiritual and psychological stress one must endure should he find himself a member of a congregation led by a "chosen one" who, through biblical misinterpretation, condemns his very existence. I suppose it's an uncomfortable situation for any critical thinker to sit in a setting where asking questions about the assumed word of God is frowned upon. And when one finds him/her self in a situation where the very fabric of one's spirituality and self-love can no longer withstand the false claims propelled from the pit of an uninformed self-proclaimed prophet knowing deep within our hearts that there is a greater truth that is not being explained, our ears begin to burn, our brows become distorted and our feet begin to move quickly toward the exit sign. Such an individual may break free from such spiritual imprisonment with little to no interest in returning. This was the essence of my friend's experience. He summed up his spiritual awakening in a startling and quite fascinating statement, "my god died..." I knew very well what he meant by this phrase in that to be taught one thing and to discover the opposite is to kill any and all remnants of our indoctrination, but I couldn't help but to identify somewhere in this phrase a detected philosophical/logical flaw that I could not yet explain in words but could certainly feel.
To say that one's God dies is, in terms of logic, to suppose that God can be killed. And since a theist in a growing population of atheists may reasonably (and this reasoning is certainly limited to the logic of the theist) assume that God's existence is not predicated upon the faith humans have in his existence (this in itself is a potential topic for a future post), the theist may very well argue that God cannot be killed. So one may wonder what does die, what does change in the presence of spiritual/intellectual awakening and I would assume that in such cases, only what the theist believes about God changes.
Allow me to further explain. Let's assume for the purposes of this conversation that God is an unchanging truth. Unchanging truths include those things that always remain constant despite time and place. Examples of unchanging truths include the chemical makeup of water which always consists of two molecules of hydrogen and one molecule of oxygen. Let me preface the continuation of this argument by simply stating that I am fully aware that unlike many unchanging truths, God's existence lacks scientific evidence but let us assume that if a higher being exists, and I have faith that it does, that this higher being remains constant as an autonomous truth. With this in mind, I believe that we as humans may differ with respect to our ideas about what this higher power is, how it came to be, what its purpose is, what function it serves, how we relate to it etc.; however in all of our infinite ideas about the truth, the truth remains constant and all that changes is what we believe and feel about that truth.
Keeping this in mind, we must recognize that when something dies it changes and if something is regarded as an unchanging truth it cannot die, it cannot be killed. All that can be altered is what we believe about that unchanging truth. This is all to say that when we say our God died in the aftermath of our spiritual awakening, this notion of the death of God for the theist is logically flawed and what we are truly saying is that the plethora of falsehoods bestowed upon us in our religious indoctrination have ceased to exist in the conscious rebirth of our knowledge of the higher power we worship.