Does God Exist?

Does God Exist? This question often comes into our minds. Let us rationally try to find an answer to this question. My answer to this question is in the affirmative. Based on my study and my experience, I can say with full conviction that God exists. There is no doubt about it. When I say that God exists, I say this in the scientific sense and not in the popular sense.

People generally believe that they are in a position to prove or disprove anything. But this is not the scientific position. According to modern science, you cannot prove or disprove anything; you can only arrive at a probability, rather than a certainty. If there is sufficient data to show that this or that thing probably exists, then one can make the statement that this or that thing exists.

The present question of whether God exists itself raises another question. Studies in anthropology, that is, the science of man, have established that the concept of God is ingrained in human nature. Belief in God runs in our blood. Every man and woman is a born believer. Especially in times of helplessness and in crisis, we discover that there is a Supreme Being. Every man and woman has experienced this natural fact at least once in his or her life.

Then why this question? If the concept of God is present in our flesh and blood, why does one question the existence of God? The reason is very simple. People want to know whether there is a rational basis to their inner belief, whether there is some scientific proof in favour of their inner feelings.

I must emphasize that there is certainly a scientific basis for belief in the existence of God. But people generally fail to discover it for the simple reason that they try to apply a criterion that they wrongly believe to be scientific. They want a proof in terms of observation, whereas this is neither the scientific method nor the criterion by which to judge. If you apply the right criterion, you will find that God is a proven fact.

Here I recall an incident that took place in 1965, when I was living in Lucknow. I happened to meet a gentleman, who was a Doctor of Philosophy and a great admirer of Bertrand Russell.  Of course, he was an atheist. During our conversation about God he asked: “What criterion do you have to prove the existence of God?” I replied: “The same criterion which you have for proving the existence of anything else.” The dialogue ended there. There was no question and no answer after this.

Why did this learned man fall silent? The reason is very simple and well known. My answer reminded him of the fact that we are living in a world where inferential argument is as applicable to the concept of God as to any other concept.

The Existence of God

Human knowledge has two different phases—the pre-Einstein period and the post-Einstein period. In the pre-Einstein period, knowledge was confined to the macro or material world, which was observable and measurable. So, it was generally held that everything, which has a real existence, should also be observable. Anything, which could not be observed, had no real existence. This meant that only the seen world was real and what was unseen was unreal or some kind of fiction.

This concept created the theory that is generally called logical positivism. It means that the only valid logical argument is one that is demonstrable in material terms; otherwise it is simply a baseless claim, and not a valid argument.

But, in the post-Einstein period, in the early years of the 20th century, when the atom was split, the whole situation changed. After the splitting of the atom, matter as a solid substance, disappeared. It was replaced by the micro-world, beyond the atomic world, where everything was reduced to unseen waves – neither measurable nor observable.

Present-day science includes so many things, such as electrons, the law of gravity, x-rays, etc., all of which are non-material in nature. They cannot be observed, but every scientist believes in their existence, for the simple reason that, although we cannot see these things directly, we can see their effect. For example, a falling apple, in the case of gravity, and a photofilm, in the case of x-rays. We believe in the existence of all these things, not by observation but by their result, in other words, by way of indirect knowledge or inferential argument.

This change in human knowledge also changed the theory of logic. Now it is well established in science that inferential argument is as valid as direct argument. (For details, see Human Knowledge, by Bertrand Russell)

In the pre-Einstein era, unbelievers held that the concept of God pertains to the unseen world. And since no direct argument was available to bear this out, belief in God was held to be illogical and all the relevant indirect arguments were considered scientifically invalid, since they were inferential in nature.

But now the whole situation has changed. Nothing is observable. So the existence of anything can be established only by means of inferential argument, rather than by direct argument.

If inferential argument is valid with regard to the unseen micro-world, it is also valid with regard to the existence of God.

The Beginning of the Universe

Let us begin from the beginning. Science tells us that 25 billion years ago there was a Big Bang in space. After this Big Bang our universe came into existence. Scientists have found evidence to believe that in the beginning there was what they call a cosmic ball. All the particles now present in the universe were tightly bound to each other in this cosmic ball in a highly compressed state.

Then, according to astronomical studies, this cosmic ball suddenly exploded. The compact particles scattered outward and the present universe came into existence, perhaps within the space of a few minutes. What external source caused the intervention so that the compact particles scattered outwardly? It was an intervener or Almighty God.

The Big Bang explosion resulted in a universe that is highly constructive and meaningful, in every sense of these words. This miraculous phenomenon is enough to make us believe that the Big Bang explosion was certainly pre-planned. And when it is proved that it was pre-planned, it is automatically proved that behind this pre-planning there was a planner, indeed a Super Planner. And it is this Super Planner who is God Almighty.

When we reflect deeply about our world, we find that all over the universe there are clear signs of planning, design and intelligent control. These signs lead us to believe that there is a Creator of creatures, there is a Designer of designs, and there is a Mover of all movements.

The Uniqueness of Planet Earth

The planet earth is a unique exception in the Universe because of its rare qualities and attributes. All the numerous celestial bodies in the Universe are either huge fiery stars or rocky planets, with the sole exception of the earth, which has life and its accompanying support elements. It is to be noted here that ‘exception’ means ‘intervention’; and ‘intervention’ proves the existence of an ‘intervener’; and once the existence of an ‘intervener’ is proved, than the existence of God is automatically proved. 

I would like to say that in such a situation the choice we have is not between ‘the universe with God’, and ‘the universe without God’. This is not an option. The real option is between ‘the universe with God’ or ‘no universe at all’. As we cannot opt for the proposition “no universe at all”, since the universe is too obvious a fact for us to deny its existence, therefore we have no option but to accept the proposition of “the Universe with God.”

Maulana Wahiduddin Khan