• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"'God is life' and 'God is love' are meaningless statements" Examine the reasons why some philosophers might agree with this statement.

Extracts from this document...


a) "'God is life' and 'God is love' are meaningless statements" Examine the reasons why some philosophers might agree with this statement. b) Explain and assess the claim that such statements as 'God is life' and 'God is love' have meaning for a believer. A plain factual statement is usually easy to understand for example; 'my dad is a man', this is easy to understand because the listener would know what a dad is because they have one as well, and they know what a man is, and it shows that my dad is alive at the time of me speaking about him. People, may however, argue about the concepts behind every word, for speaker and listener, but common sense tells us that the majority of people would know what is meant by this. However, religious concepts are not bound by these rules; there can be no such thing as 'a plain factual religious statement'. There are two philosophers in particular that wrote about religious language in relation to statements such as; 'God is life' and 'God is love', these are AJ Ayer and Anthony Flew. ...read more.


He is intangible, invisible, and elusive; we never see any evidence that he exists. Your gardener has been reduced bit by bit to nothing'. Flew claims that the same could be said for statements about God's existence, love or power. You can qualify the attributes of God down to nothing. He says religious language reveals that God's literal existence is not provable, literal in this sense means to do with the world. Therefore, some philosophers may agree with the statement "'God is life' and 'God is love' are meaningless statements", because such statements are neither analytical (correct by definition) or synthetic (provable by experiment or experience). Thus such statements are impossible to verify. On the other hand, some may argue that, taking Flew's conclusion to be correct; that religious language reveals that God's literal existence is not provable, to back up their argument because if God existed in a literal way then he would not be God. Religious statements such as the ones in question are accepted as being different from verifiable ones. One thing that makes them different is the different use of vocabulary in them. ...read more.


The fidelity of faithfulness is different from that of a good human being; the fidelity of a husband and wife to each other is not the same as the faithfulness of the guide dog to its owner. One assumes it is somehow on a higher plane. The same is true of God's goodness - it will be on a higher plane than ours, but we can appreciate it by analogy with our own lives. Wittgenstein made the same point, by using red; saying that red per se is ineffable. An idea of redness can only be illustrated by things that are red. The same is true for metaphysical, ethical and religious truths. Language cannot state something it can only show, or try to describe. Therefore, many believers may argue that such statements as the ones in question do have meaning for them, because they are not supposed to be taken in a literal sense. Believers in God; will realise that they are not supposed to be taken literally, unlike others who may not realise this. In the same way as metaphors and similes are used by religions to get their point across, but the problem with these are that some might not understand them. 1 AJ Ayer, Language Truth and Logic Thomas Taylor ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Existence of God section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Existence of God essays

  1. 'An analysis of arguments for the existence of God will result in valid philosophical ...

    I would agree with him; as well, Anselm has made assumptions about the definition of God - his understanding of God may well not be shared by all believers.

  2. Explain the Ontological argument.

    Winnicott argued that religion is an essential buffer, between the mind and external reality. Religion is useful because it helps humans adapted to their environment by providing a source of comfort and familiarity like the art forms. Rizzuto has argued that the illusion of religion is no more of an illusion than science.

  1. Can the Existence of God be proven?

    1986). But surely, the argument that our intellect is restricted within boundaries is another reason to believe God has deceived us, implying he doesn't exist. As why he would give us unlimited will without unlimited intellect if it results in errors.

  2. The God Question

    omniscient and omnipotent which is all well and good until we present the question of suffering which asks, if God possesses all of these qualities simultaneously then how can suffering exist in the world? If God knows all of our issues has the power to resolve them and loves us all then why do problems in the world continue?

  1. Science Is The Language Of God

    But, one can not find a person who completely disregards scientific theories, or doesn't "believe" in them. There are people who may argue about the authenticity and credibility of the theory, and contradict it with one of their own, but there is no one who can say that science doesn't

  2. "Religious experience is all in the mind of the believer" -Examine and comment on ...

    Other examples can relate to this claim, i.e. Christian mystics and monks who constantly worship often claim to have experiences with God through prayer. Religious experiences are by their very nature preternatural; experiences that are out of the ordinary, they are beyond the natural order of things. They include psychopathological states such as psychoses, forms of altered awareness and religious experience (Charlsworth: 1988).

  1. Looking at the views of two different religions about the same topic, 'life after ...

    Surely God will raise all the dead but no one except Him knows when, as he has his own plans of things as in Quran He addresses to His prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H): " Say, no one in the heavens and the in the earth know future except God.

  2. Discuss and evaluate the ways in which the beliefs of researchers might count as ...

    beliefs and feeling, and perception from experience will change the way of investigation ,and they may look at the history from one angle, the bias of researchers will make him look at the event from one perspective .and the historian which has no relationship with that time, no influence from that time will look at the event from all angles.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work