Curtis has a problem with my word “decide,” and I’m trying to figure out why. Responding to my assertion that we don’t have the capacity to decide whether there’s a god or not, he wrote:
The word “decide” has been stuck in my craw since Saturday. The best explanation I can muster is to ask, “do you think Einstein ‘decided’ that there is intelligence lying beneath it all?
So I’m not sure what exactly got stuck (or what a craw really is), but if the issue is something to do with deciding versus believing, I believe “decide,” which literally means to cut off, is appropriate. Atheists cut off the possibility of immanence; deists cut off the possibility of dust to dust. I don’t believe we have the capacity to decide either way.
“Believe” means to allow, and here’s what Einstein allowed:
We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God. We see the universe marvelously arranged and obeying certain laws but only dimly understand these laws.