Why Does God Hate the Poor: Can God Love? Part II

“The mind has a thousand eyes and the heart but one. If the light of the whole life dies, then love is done.” So goes the poem by Francis William Bourdillon. Yeah. Right. Love always gets the good press and hate the bad, but in reality, especially for the poor and working class, hate is often a much more useful tool for survival in life than love. If the love of the Powers-that-be had their way for me, I would still be in the Navy spending at least half my life at sea risking it for their safety. Or worse, I would be working as a janitor back in my hometown or somewhere else as a poor humble servant of God in society while they run around gathering as much power as they can for themselves, for their children, and in the end still go to heaven. Religion and the Powers-that-be love the powerless, weak, and oppressed as long as they stay powerless, weak, and oppressed. Rationally controlled anger, hate, aggression, and ambition usually do more to help one work out of the working class or out of poverty than love unless you are some type of a politician, prostitute, or other willing to sell your soul for money and power.

 
I recently saw a documentary about Bob Gibson, a great baseball pitcher from the 1960’s whom I remember when I was a kid as someone who pitched with anger and aggression and did not hesitate to use a beanball when a batter was crowding the plate thus creating a high intimidation factor with batters. He blames his anger on racism. Yeah. Whatever. Racism is as good a reason as any to hate. Even if that were true, then racism is the best thing that ever happened to him. Without the anger, aggression, and ambition to defeat the Powers that racism gave him — unlike those who accepted it peacefully and tried to change it with love by turning the other cheek — he would have been just another wannabe fastball pitcher playing in sandlots somewhere with millions of others — black, white, or whatever — with nowhere to go. Everyone playing baseball loves the game, it is the skilled hatred of losing that gets you into the major leagues. Anger, aggressiveness, and competitiveness are what gave Gibson the ability to make it and survive in the major leagues as it does for any professional player. Anger, aggressiveness, and competitiveness are each accepted as a good for the Powers-that-be and as a necessary attribute of successful capitalism but somehow these attributes are seen as an evil for the poor and the working class. They are supposed to be humble and accept their lot in life. Racism breeds hate, but the rationally controlled returned hate and the fear it creates in the Powers — just as with class struggle — can beat it and eliminate it by making the Powers who breed racism too scared to promote it.

 
So what is hate that it gives it such a bad rap? Now that we know what love is, defining hate should be easy. It is the opposite of love. Self-hate is wanting not to exist nor to continue existing and having no hope of meaning in that existence. Once all three of these elements come together plus the opportunity to put a bullet in your head or in the head of others, suicide will shortly follow unless one of these elements changes. Hating others is wanting them not to exist, for them to stop existing, or that there be no meaning for their existence.

 
No ambiguity here. Hate, unlike love, is not ambiguous but is very clear and provides clarity for life. It is this clarity that makes hate such a useful tool in trying to survive and battle the Powers, if one can control it: that is avoiding having the three elements of self-hatred come together to the point of suicide. Unlike love requiring that one love oneself before one can love others, hate allows for the option of living while loving oneself but hating others. It is a much more versatile tool than love. One can will to exist, will to continue existing, and hope and have meaning for one’s life and thus self-love while at the same time hating others: 1) willing that they do not exist; 2) that they do not continue existing; and 3) that they have no meaning for their life. In fact, hate of others could act as the meaning that provides the third element for one’s self-love. So for love, you must love yourself before you can love your neighbor. But for hate, there is no need to hate yourself before you can hate your neighbor. You can love yourself and yet hate others. Hate is one side of coin with love the other.

 
So can God love? Or, more importantly given our topic, can He hate? Before we go on to those issues, I want to deal with some ambiguity in my contemplation and contemplate whether there is a third option between love and hate: indifference or amorality to both.

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Can God Love? Part I

Our consciousness and perception of reality reveals that God hates the poor. Can He love them instead? Can God love? All Western religion including secular religions such as humanism state either and usually both that God is love ot that love is the greatest virtue. Do either of these popular statements withstand critical analytical examination? Not really. This hype about love, especially by religion, serves to keep the poor happy and the working class in their place.

 
In my reading of history — for that matter in any reading of history — love such as love of country, power, money, tribe, and even love of family and love of justice have caused much more evil and suffering in the world than hate. Hate has rational limits. Few, if anyone, would risk their life for hate. Almost all who have or who can love would risk their life and that of others and outright kill others for the love of whatever it is they love. Hate may make you a serial killer of 30 to 40 people but love will make you a patriot willing to kill three to four million. Love is not necessarily a good. That conclusion seems to depend on what you love. Love of power is supposedly bad. It is considered bad for the poor. The Powers love the poor and oppressed but only if they are willing to stay poor and oppressed. The Powers worship love of power as a good despite sometimes pretending otherwise. Regardless, love of power is what drives human culture because history is class struggle, so pragmatically love of power may be called the ultimate good in terms of human culture surviving the power of the natural world always trying to kill us. Capitalism at least admits it considers love of power a good — as long as there are equal opportunity and struggle among the Powers which there never is.

 
Loving your neighbor — now called “the Other” by secular religion that wants to hijack Christianity without the Christ — as you love yourself is supposedly a good but what about the first necessary premise of that command: love yourself? In order to love your neighbor, you must first love yourself since your existence is your only certainty. However, self-love seems to be one of the most harmful evils that has caused just as many atrocities as love of power if not more. Then again without self-love, humans would have died out millennia ago. The ability to love oneself blindly regardless of any faults and thus to have hope for a better life is what allows the poor and working class to survive its miseries and the ridicule of the Powers around them constantly trying to demean their life. Supposedly, according to women at least, love and sexual love are distinct and being addicted to the first is good but being addicted to the latter is bad. You will have to ask a female philosopher to explain that difference.

 
What a mess this love issue is. In order to determine if God can love, we must first define love. We must first see if we can ontologically define love especially insofar as that word is used in respect to God. Self-love just as consciousness and my existence is one of the few items in the fabric of knowledge that are ontologically certain; we either have it or do not. Thus, we can ontologically — not just pragmatically — rationally contemplate self-love. As long as we exist and are conscious, regardless of what skeptical reason may say, we know and perceive self-love otherwise we would commit suicide. The Commandment to love your neighbor as yourself is more of an attempt to get humans to reduce their self-love than to raise their love of others. There is no doubt as to the existence and strength of self-love, so I will start by contemplating and defining self-love to see through the cultural and social smokescreens created to make self-love a vice for the working class and to replace it with all sorts of hype such as God is love or love is life in order to keep the poor and working class in their place.

 
The most basic element and requirement of a person having a use and of the usefulness for the word love and thus its meaning in self-love are that the person wants to exist and wants to continue existing. Love is an act of will saying I want to exist and want to continue existing. This does not seem to do it though. If I want to exist living as a heroin addict on the streets of New York earning money by being a prostitute, the conclusion would not be that I love myself but the exact opposite: that I have self hate and am trying to destroy myself. Just wanting to exist would not give much meaning to the expression “love your neighbor as yourself”. If I want to live as a prisoner in North Korea and want the same for my fellow humans, again, the implication is that I neither love myself nor my neighbor. Love seems to demand more than just existence.

 
Our present United States culture would say that the additional element that self-love demands in order to be love is individual happiness: that we want or will a happy life for ourselves — we have hope. And, thus, when we love others, it also means that we want a happy life for them. This emphasis on happiness seems to be nonsense and a modern cultural phenomena. For much of the world, individual happiness is not a possibility. Never was and never will be. That is why we are asking the question that we are asking. Yet all these people that really have no hope for happiness in life are still able to love themselves and love others. There is more to life than happiness. My favorite example of this need that goes beyond happiness in life is expressed by the eight points of the Maltese Cross establishing the required moral standards for the Knights Templar: faith, repentance, humility, fairness, mercy, forthrightness, honesty, and suffering. Happiness is not in the list of elements for self-love by these warrior monks. Of course, these eight virtues only have power and meaning because the knights expected happiness in the afterlife after giving up on happiness in this life. So we are back to the point that perhaps this additional element is happiness or a want or hope for happiness.

 
Some philosophers, such as for example Thomas Aquinas, have in fact concluded happiness as a required element for love: love consists of a desire to exist, to continue existing, and to want happiness. Happiness for Aquinas consisted of an afterlife with God. So as to the elements that define self-love, can it be be defined as a desire to exist and to continue existing plus a hope for happiness?

 
I do not think so. The greatest love is the love of one who sacrifices their life for another such as the soldier who falls on the hand grenade to suffer the entire blast then dies so that others may live. This act of love most certainly did not demand a desire or hope for happiness in this life. It is not clear it demands or requires a hope or belief for a happy afterlife. In the ancient world, the Greeks believed in an afterlife that consisted not of an eternity of happiness with a loving God but with Hades — the word from which we get our word hell. A life after death for the Ancients was simply to exist in a peaceful sleep with one’s ancestors unaware of any past or future but just peace after a life of struggle and war. Despite such a dismal view (from out modern perspective) of the afterlife, this view did not stop the Greek warriors at the battle of Thermopylae from sacrificing their lives to try to save their neighbors. Actually, those so called pagans with their belief in a Hades apparently had more love for their neighbors than modern Christians have either for their God or for fellow Christians. The Ancients fought to save their neighbors. Modern Christians with barely a whimper allow the modern warrior religion of Islam to tramp around killing Christians so as to trample out Christianity.

 
So maybe the third element that defines love is not a desire for individual happiness but a desire for the happiness of others. This would make some sense and explain a lot because as rational beings we know that the individual dies and always will die. Any hope for humanity to continue must be for humanity to continue not for any individual to continue which is impossible. But, now we are reversing ourselves on the logic. Love of neighbor cannot come first and cannot define self-love. As even the Christian Commandment admits, in order to love your neighbor, you must first love yourself. Ontologically, we know this must be the case. We have to stay focused on the ontological nature of the knowledge we are seeking. I only have true knowledge of my own existence. Everything else could be a figment of God’s imagination as idealists argue.

 
Love of neighbor must start with love of self. In order to define love, we first have to define and understand what love of self is. So back to square one. Love of self we know involves at least wanting to exist and to continue existing — the desire to continue existing plus a desire for something more. The something more is the open issue. The something more is not only the final element that defines love but is also the element that from the social perspective makes it a good or an evil; and, in the case of self sacrifice love, it is able to negate the first two existential requirements of existing and to continue existing. The only characteristic that I can contemplate that would satisfy these purposes is meaning. Self-love is: 1) the will to exist; 2) the will to continue existing; 3) plus the hope that my existence has meaning. If I find a meaning for my existence, that hope becomes real instead of just being hope thus the first two elements can be negated and I can fall on the hand grenade to save my comrades as an act of love. To love our neighbor as ourselves is to want them to exist, to continue existing, and for their lives to have meaning. If we decide on what that meaning is, it can negate the first two existential requirements for love.

 
Further, just as finding a meaning for life will allow for our self sacrifice of our own life for that meaning, love will allow us to want to kill and actually to kill our neighbors as an act of love to maintain that meaning. Thus, ontologically, love is: 1) the will to exist; 2) the will to continue existing; 3) plus the will that our existence has meaning. Love of neighbor or love of money is all the same ontologically regardless of whether ethics or morality calls one good or the other evil. This definition may not be very romantic or live up to the hype that love seems to have in popular culture, but that does not make it any the less true or less powerful. It is powerful enough for a person to sacrifice their own life for others. It is also powerful enough for a person to sacrifice others for that love.

 
What about hate? What is hate? Before we decide whether God can love the poor, I want to go on to define hate and then also see if there is a third option just as there is with morality: can God be amoral? Is there an option between or outside of love and hate?

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Does He Will This Hate?

Why does God hate the poor? Does he will His hate of the poor?

 
Almost universally among continental philosophers, they see the human will as the driving force of human nature. Among many it is also the driving force and even the substance and essence of reality. For example, the idealism of Hegel with its dialectical logic of the spirit of history eventually became both the world concept of the fascists and the material class struggle of the communists. For Schopenhaurer, man’s will was the substance and driving force of reality. For Friedrich Nietzsche, it was the will to power that was a driving force of nature and humanity. Even the leap of faith that is the basis for Kierkegaard’s Christian theology was a leap of the will. Existentialism depends on the will to give meaning to the meaninglessness of the universe in which existence comes before essence. However, other than the concept of ethics, there is probably no word that is more distorted and practically meaningless in the working class perspective of life — which is the perspective of these essays and this blog.

 
The word “will” as it is usually used and for which it is useful and therefore as is its meaning cannot be applied to God. Theological talk treating the will of God and free will as if they were the same type of word is one of the biggest cons by theology on the poor and the working class. To will something requires one lacks it and wants it. God is omnipresent, all powerful, and the source of what there is instead of nothing. He needs nothing. He is complete and whole, always was, is, and will be. Therefore, this meaning of will cannot be applied to God as an omnipresent all-powerful being because She does not need anything.

 
“Will” however also describes wanting to continue. At least for the moment, I am alive and want to continue living instead of committing suicide. This existential reality is different from wanting something such as meaning for my existence: the will that leads to hope. As Friedrich Nietzsche said, hope is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man.

 
However, at least this concept of will involving only existence does not entail lacking something and therefore, at least in theory, can be applied to God. Or can it? If God exists and continues to will his existence, such implies that He could commit suicide by not willing to exist. Ontologically, this seems to be a possibility. God got the poker game of the universe going but do we need Her around any longer to continue its existence? He is the reason there is something instead of nothing, but now that there is something, does the something need Him to continue? The Dealer calls the game but can we now change the dealer?

 
We are forgetting in this paradox our philosophy of language reality and getting caught up in our own words. These questions ignore the ontology that we are talking about because they assume or imply God acting in time. We exist. We continue to will our existence. One day we may not exist. We exist in time. Time is our relative perception of the possibilities around us and their coming to life around us. God does not exist in time. He is omnipresent by the definition of the concept of God, that is why we have the ontological proof for Her existence. The something that is now includes time because we our conscious of it and perceive it and thus create changing relationships based on our needs, but God has no needs and is the source of time and therefore is outside of time. By the definition of God, if She existed in time then we would have to ask why is there this something god in time instead of nothing. That would lead us again by necessity to the reason there is something instead of nothing: God — outside of time. Time is a meaningless word when applied to God.

 
Everything is a “now” to the God of the ontological proof — there is no past or future. The concept of will only applies nominally to God in the sense that He is the reason there is something instead of nothing. He wills the something and continues it by definition. But this use of “will” is not will in the sense of a choice. A choice would mean that God has options between one thing or another, that He is incomplete in some way, that He exists in time in some way. Only incomplete beings have options or choices because they are incomplete. That is not ontologically possible for the concept of God. As the ontological proof goes, God is the perfect omnipotent omniscient originator of the universe, the reason why there is something instead of nothing. There is nothing God lacks requiring a will for it. God does not exist in time, so He cannot will existing now and not later or vice versa. Thus, whether He wills the poor and His hatred for them are meaningless questions that only apply nominally to the question we are asking. Nominally, God does will the poor and His hatred of them in the same way that He wills all creation: by necessity.

 
In summary, we have reached a point of having numerous answers. In our contemplation of the question of why God hates the poor, we know that God knows and thinks about the poor and His hatred for them in an analytical completely ontological sense and wills it in the sense that His will is also his existence and by necessity the existence of something instead of nothing. The poor and His hatred of them are a necessary part of the something for which He is the reason that exists. Also we have been able to conclude that neither justice, morality, ethics, or fairness bars such hatred of the poor. The poor and God’s hate of them exists necessarily but why? Why not love them necessarily?

 
Before we go further to answer the question of why, there is the question of hatred itself. What does hate mean? Does God hate in the same way we hate? Does God love in the same way we love? Could He love the poor instead of hating them and treating them in the way He does? These will be our final questions on this issue.

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Does He Know and Think About This Hate?

Why does God hate the poor? Does God know He hates the poor and does He think about it? As we contemplate the issue of God’s hate for the poor, you must continually remember and keep in mind what our concept is of God. It is the God of the ontological proof: God is the answer to the question of why there is something instead of nothing.

 
As shown by Descartes, other than the knowledge of our own existence while conscious of it and the ontological existence of God, we have no rational knowledge we can call truth as that word is classically and usually defined: knowledge about the world that is indisputable in all possible worlds. All rational truths are pragmatic and the word “true” is merely a “syncategorematic term” as called by the Scholastics as the philosopher Hilary Putnam sarcastically calls it. For example, saying “it is true the car is green” does nothing to the sentence “the car is green” other than allowing us to transition from talking about green cars to talking about sentences about green cars. Twentieth Century philosophy has successfully shown that the old distinction between synthetic and analytic truths in reason is no longer valid nor sound. All rational knowledge is ultimately synthetic. That is, its initial foundation is in our consciousness and perception plus our sense experience interaction with the world and our intentional synthesis of the struggle between these two forces.

 
This is even true of mathematics that used to be considered an example of undisputed analytical truth that is true in all possible worlds. Despite the protests of rationalists and idealists and of philosophers and most mathematicians who say they discover mathematical truth independently of the world, the reality is that no one discovers or has discovered mathematical truth a priori or simply by thinking about it without sense experience interaction with the world as a foundation for that discovery. Geometry came into being as a result of the need for ancient Egypt, Samaria, and other ancient cultures’ need to measure and describe land for tax and sale purposes. Algebra came into existence based on a need for traders on the spice routes to keep track of their accounts. Reason is a tool for solving perceived problems. Once this tool develops basic rules for solving problems, through induction and deduction or other logic, it can derive an infinite number of variations and inferences from those premise rules to become analytic knowledge or tautologies that are true in all possible worlds once the initial premises are accepted. But such does not change the initial synthetic nature of that knowledge that can change if the assumed premises are changed.

 
Reason is the mind’s tool for solving problems. Truth and knowledge only exist pragmatically. If a statement works to solve a problem, it is true until it stops working, at that point it becomes false. Scientific statements can only be proven false but never true. That is why they are scientific statements instead of statements in practically any other field that are never proven either true or false.

 
However, reason is not the only possible source for knowledge. We know it is not because reason contradicts itself when it makes a statement as I just have that it is absolutely true that all truth is relative. By stating such a conclusion, reason states there is absolute truth and contradicts itself. Reason, unless dealing with pragmatic truth, always winds up contradicting itself and therefore proves it cannot achieve knowledge of any truths other than pragmatic truths. We exist, therefore we think. Once we know we exist, then through the ontological nature of such existence we know God exists: a reason for there being something instead of nothing. What about God? Does He know things in the same way we do, purely by interaction with the world and the need to solve problems caused by that interaction? Does She exist, therefore She thinks? Does She reason to solve problems while thinking of Herself and while perceiving reality?

 
We cannot ontologically apply the meaning of the word consciousness to God in the same way that we apply it to ourselves or to the animal world or to any life. We are not a necessary being that is the reason for there being something instead of nothing. He is. God is. We exist, therefore we think, because we may not have existed before and we may not exist later. It is possible that we think while not conscious of existing. For example, we know there exists something we call subconscious thought that we cannot talk about. Is a misnomer to call it “subconscious thought”. Since we cannot talk about it, it is not really thought. Thought and language are the same thing. “When I think in words, I don’t have ‘meanings’ in my mind in addition to the verbal expressions, language itself is the vehicle of thought.” — Ludwig Wittgenstein. It is simply one of those things “whereof one cannot speak, one must be silent” of Wittgenstein. However, we never are silent and always try to talk about it anyway because it is so important in life. Without talk, we know it by action. It is often pragmatically better and faster than conscious thought, such as when athletes go into the zone and become the ball or whatever they are doing or when mathematicians come up with intuitive creative proofs out of apparent nothingness.

 
However, for us to know we exist, we must first exist. This is not the state of affairs of God. His existence and knowledge of His existence cannot be separated. Otherwise, He would be in the same position or in the same state of affairs as us and will need a reason for existing instead of not existing — which would be God. So for humans, the knowledge or absolute truth we have is that if we exist then we think, that is, the logical statement if a then b. For God, knowledge is simply the principle of identity. Existence equals thought, a = a. Unlike for us, in which all knowledge is synthetic, God’s knowledge and thought are all analytic.

 
The best way to view this problem is to go back to our earlier poker game example. Reality is a poker game in which God created the cards, bets, ante, game rules, and thus all the probabilities and created the players and then let things play out. In substance, He is not the game and does not control the outcome, though in essence He is the game because He can do or He can think all the probabilities and knows how the players will play and thus the winners and losers and the eventual outcome. The players are desperately trying to figure out what hands will be played but never can figure it all out. That is why life is a gamble. The players are in the game therefore they think synthetically. They induce and deduce to try to win as they are destined to try to do. Meanwhile, from the first ante, God standing outside the game knows every hand and outcome because He can analytically figure them out. He knows it all while simultaneously the entire time the players are ignorant of the outcome.

 

This concept is beautifully expressed in the prologue to the Gospel of John. “In the beginning was the Logos and the Logos was with God and the Logos was God.” Logos is the word from which we derive our word logic. In some translations, Logos is written down as “Word”, “Word” is used for Logos. Either way, whether you use Logos or Word, this prologue is consistent with our ontological proof for the existence of God and is a beautiful shorthand expression of it.

 
So does God know He hates the poor? Yes. Does God think about hating the poor? Yes, in the sense that He knows about everything. Knowledge and thought are the same with God, always analytic and tautological in the mind of God.

 
The next question is the Will of God, the Will of God is something that religion is always talking about. Does God will His hate for the poor?

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Is It a Universal Hate?

Why does God hate the poor? Is this a universal hate? As we contemplate the issue of God’s hate for the poor, all of our answers so far have negated possible explanations based on human excuses for hate that cannot be applied to God. The meanings of “good”, “evil”, “morality”, “ethics”, “justice”, and “fairness” are all human constructs, created to give us meaning in life. None of these words can serve as an explanation, justification, or excuse for God’s varying treatment of His creations. The individual creates a morality to give meaning to life and a social group creates an ethics to maintain the group’s power structure. “Good”, “evil”, “justice”, and “fairness” are all terms that describe other humans or things in reality that either help or hinder our created morality or ethics. These words do not apply to God, God can do whatever He wants and is not limited by our concepts. None of these human words explain why God prefers some humans over others.  How far does this preference go; does it go beyond humans? The question of God’s hatred for the poor, is this question limited solely to humans? Do concepts and questions such as these that we are asking apply only to humans? I’ve been treating them as such, but in order to avoid confusion about what we are contemplating, I want to be clear that the issue of God’s hatred for the poor is not simply a human issue but one of the natural order of reality and of all life.

 
I will clarify what I’m doing by using an example that I recently came across. A bunch of Yale University economists, with the aid of anthropologists and other academics, have been using an island of monkeys near Puerto Rico for social experiments. One test involved giving the monkeys pretend money that they could exchange for food from one of two persons. One person would show the monkey a cup with one grape but in exchange for the coin would give the monkey two grapes. The other person would show the monkey three grapes but then in exchange for a coin would give the monkey two grapes. So in both situations, the monkey would get two grapes. As you would expect from academics not skilled in analytic thought, the Yale professors using illogical or unsound assumptions went on to make a series of illogical conclusions. The unsound and illogical assumption they used was that the rational thing to do would be to take grapes randomly from either tester since the end result is the same — one will always wind up with two grapes regardless of which tester one picks. However, the monkeys almost universally always picked from the tester who showed one grape but gave them two. The Yale academics went on to make the unsound and illogical conclusion that the preference was irrational and that this universal irrational preference is ingrained and explained in the monkeys by, as always, the universal academic religion of evolution. Reason abhors arbitrariness and randomness.

 
Without getting into the philosophy of science and theory of knowledge at issue, based simply on clear logical reasoning that I’ve been trying to delineate in these essays and not on the prejudice and bias of academia, hopefully you will see how irrational their conclusions are and what they miss in terms of learning and knowledge from their experiment. Imagine having an employer who offers you one of something in exchange for doing a small job. You then do it and he gives you two of that thing. Imagine another employer who offers you three of something in exchange for the same job. You do it but then he gives you two of the same thing instead. In both cases, for the same job, you get paid two grapes. So given the choice of employers next time, for doing the same job, which employer would you choose? The rational choice is the one who gave you the extra thing, not the one who took away one of the offerings. Playing the odds and appearances, the one who gave you something extra, based on your needs and desires for as many as possible of whatever is being offered, appears to be the more trustworthy individual; that is, appears to be the person most likely to give you what you want and thus from the rational perspective is the person who is more moral, ethical, just, and fair. Since you know the other person will most likely take at least one thing away, they might take more away given the chance and thus there is a greater danger of their denying you what you want. So why give that cheat a chance? Based on the facts and rational concepts of good, morality, justice, and fairness, the rational choice is the person that adds a thing.

 
In reality, both of the Other may be scientists who may one day kill you to autopsy your brain regardless of the rationality of your choices. Until then, the rational choice is to pick the one giving you the extra thing based on concepts of morality, justice, ethics, and fairness and good and evil or whatever rational analysis is used for the choices. The human rational concepts of good, evil, morality, ethics, and justice and fairness based on getting what one wants are universal, not only to monkeys but to all life. There is a natural law in the universe: anything that gets us what we want is normatively what ought to be. Even at the level of quantum physics, the randomness of nature disappears once an observer is added and when observations get large enough. At that point, the randomness disappears and deterministic classical physics kicks in and everything appears orderly and beautiful. At that point, you can read The Consolation of Philosophy by the Roman philosopher Boethius and you can be impressed by the beauty and order of the universe and then concepts of good and evil and other norms start to make sense.

 
The difference between humans and monkeys and other non-human life is that we can be irrational. Instead of always acting in our rational best interest, we can reject the rational choice of the tester that gives an extra grape and, irrationally, instead pick the other tester intentionally: out of spite; rejection or protest of the testing situation; to mess with Yale testers; out of hope that the other tester will give us all three grapes; or out of an almost infinite number of reasons for acting irrationally — whereas there is usually only limited reasons to act rationally. As Wittgenstein’s Rule Following Problem conceptually analyzes, unlike computers, monkeys, and other entities, there is no such thing as “rule following” for humans other that a specific instance of following a rule — we can always create new rules and not follow those we create or already have.

 

As humans, we can look outside the game and ask the question that other life cannot ask. Why does God hate the poor — including poor monkeys and the uncountable number of other lives and beasts of burden varying from abused animal prey to worker bees dying for a queen out there who have lived and live their entire existence only as a struggle to exist or are forced to live their existence in servitude to the Powers who not only control them but decide whether they are to live or to die. So this question we are asking, of why does God hate the poor, is important not just relative to us but to all of reality that is unable to ask it.

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Is God Fair?

 

Is God fair?

 
I ask this question because fairness and its use seem to connote a different meaning than justice, so much so that the present ruling class glorified philosopher John Rawls wrote a book entitled A Theory of Justice arguing a rationalist foundation of “justice as fairness”. Fairness implies a certain simplicity and mathematical balancing that appear to be much more accurate and honest than the concept of justice. For example, if you have three starving people and three apples, fairness would dictate that each person gets an apple. If you are playing football, you expect the referee to be fair to all players, that is by applying the rules and making the calls the same for all players.

 
This type of reasoning creates an illusion of rational rules that creates an illusion of justice but ultimately, when critically and analytically examined as they pragmatically work in reality, it still leads to the same uses and usefulness as the words ‘justice’ and ‘injustice’ contemplated in prior essays. For example, if you try to factor into the three- hungry-people-decision the different ages, weight, metabolism, health, and almost infinite number of other factors that differentiate people, it becomes a rationally unsolvable problem of “justice”. Do you give a young, fat, healthy child, with a much more likely chance of survival more than one apple or the sick, skinny old person who needs it more but most likely will die anyway? The same types of problems arise in the football example. If a player is viewed as an asshole, especially playing in an away game, the fans expect more calls to go against the player and the calls will go against the player more often. Such unfairness in the rules — or such unfairness in the application of rules — is actually seen as justice, punishing the player for being an asshole (however the Powers-that-be or the fans define being an asshole). So much so that if the player is seen as an asshole because of actions off the field when not even playing football, such as for example he beats his wife, then the fans, the league, and the referees expect that the player will not even be allowed to play but will be suspended or thrown out completely out of his playing job and salary. Thus, in this latter case, the Powers will deny the player, his wife, and their family any income from the only employable skill the player has and bankrupt them as an act of justice. Such unfairness in the game is seen as justice in society.

 
Ultimately, as with justice, anything that helps get the individual or social group ruling  class ideology what they want as meaning in their life is fair and also just. What hinders that goal is unfair and unjust.

 
Therefore, in substance, analytically, there is no difference between the use and usefulness for ‘justice’ and ‘fairness’ and neither can be applied to the concept of God. If He wants to give three of his starving creations three apples, one apple, zero apples and just watch them starve to death, or whatever She wants to do with the apples, He is free to do so unhindered by any human created concept of fairness. Ultimately, the answer to the question asked by Socrates of whether something is good, fair, or just because the gods’ love it or whether the gods love it because it is good, fair, or just is: neither. If we were to answer this question in terms of human language treating God as a Person, the answer would be that something is good, fair, or just because God loves it.

 
Do our questions regarding God’s hatred for the poor apply also to nature and the animal world, in essence to all of reality or just to humans?

Why Does God Hate the Poor: Is God Just?

Is God just? Can the words “justice” and “injustice” be applied to God?

 

The search for justice has been a constant source of injustice in life, especially for the poor and working class from whose perspective we are examining the question of “why does God hate the poor”. Calls for justice are usually the starting stage of the greatest injustices of history. “Justice” has been defined in many ways, by philosophers and theologians, all of which have failed to achieve justice. For classical and for modern philosophers varying from Plato to Karl Marx, justice means “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs”. As usual, this sounds nice in the abstract, but both for Plato’s Republic and to the other extreme of Marxism and its post-modern progeny, the end result in reality is always the same tyranny of the few over the many that is the class struggle of history. Modern theorists on justice, such as John Rawls in his books A Theory of Justice and Justice as Fairness and Karl Popper with his book The Open Society and Its Enemies, tried to subsume the Christian Beatitudes into a secular form of social norms but such attempts have failed miserably in making any qualitative improvement in human society. When acting in association with capitalism and science, some calls for justice have at least materially or quantitatively improved the human condition. However, such association qualitatively has served only to replace chattel slavery by wage slavery; all have done nothing to improve qualitatively human nature in any way in relation to any concept of justice or injustice — all such concepts are relative to a given point in history. The lower classes continue to remain slaves and will continue to do so for as long as there continue to be humans in the class struggle that is history.

 
The word “justice” is purely a human creation. In the reality of human language, the meaning of most words is their use and usefulness. In this sense, the meaning of the word “justice” in human reality as used by any individual is “that which gets me what I want”. If the individual wants something to give their life meaning and they get it, the process and result is just. If someone else or something denies them this meaning, this denial is unjust. Assistance in getting what the individual wants in order to give meaning to their life is justice. Any denial is unjust. For a society, justice is anything that maintains order and the status quo power structure of that society, and injustice is anything that threatens the status quo power structure and order of a society.

 
Does the word justice have any inherent meaning when applied to the concept of God? Again, you must remember that God is defined here as the reason why there is something instead of nothing. Based on any purely analytic examination of the nature of God, the answer to the question of whether justice or injustice applies to God is “no”. God is the ultimate power of reality. He can do whatever He wants, whenever She wants, and to whoever He wants. The word justice has no meaning when applied to God, any more than do the words good or evil. The concept of justice does not apply to God and He cannot be described as just or as unjust. Nothing can deny God anything. God does not need anything. God does not owe us anything.

 
This is why religions such as Islam and Old Testament Christianity that make justice the ultimate virtue and aspect of God are so dangerous in life, especially to the working class and the poor, more so than religions such as New Testament Christianity that make love the ultimate virtue. Any religion that gives the attribute “justice” to the absolute power that is God is a dangerous illusion for the working class because it equates the workers’ or the poor’s need for something with God’s need for something. This equating of what the worker wants to what God wants not only weakens workers’ ability to will, work, and fight for what they want and need because they expect God to get it for them but also serves to justify any atrocity that the individual worker wants to commit to their fellow workers in order to get it. This results in the working class wasting a lot of time and energy fighting among themselves while the Powers-that-be stand by and watch the battle — enjoying their power. Once one starts to believe that God will give you prosperity, education, or whatever simply because one wants it and therefore it must be just, one has lost the battle against the Powers in any struggle one is fighting. God may do such for the rich and powerful, but He will not do it for the working class or for those that are not among the Powers-that-be; this is the whole point of this question we are asking of “why does God hate the poor”. He plays favorites. He is entitled to do so. Workers and the poor must work, fight, and struggle for what they want. He is not just or unjust. He is God, He can do whatever She wants.

 
New Testament Christianity tries to get around this aspect of God by talk of love, mercy, the Trinity that includes a Person that is divine, and so forth trying to make love the primary and only attribute of God. However, even according to New Testament Christianity, justice is not a reality in this life and, from my reading of the New Testament, is not a reality in the next either — if there is a next. “Justice” is a minor word in New Testament Christian reality. I realize the New Testament states in the Beatitudes “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. And Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”, but these Beatitudes do not say how the thirst and hunger will be filled nor what the reward will be. It definitely will not be by justice because God can do whatever He wants with His creations, either in this life or in the next, if there is any. As Clarence Darrow said, “There is no justice in life, in or out of court.” More accurately, the description should be that there is no justice in this life or the next, if any.

 

This Christian reality is best brought out by the Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard at Matthew 20:1–16 that goes as follows:

For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is a householder, which went out early in the morning to hire laborers into his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the laborers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. So when evening was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the laborers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.

Faced with injustice, essentially God’s answer is: “it is my world [vineyard], I can do what I want with it and with you”.

 
So just to summarize where we are as of now in our contemplation of the question of “why does God hate the poor”, we can conclude that this question is not one of good or evil, of morality or ethics, nor of justice or injustice. None of these human creations apply to God. If He wants to hate the poor, He is free to do so without any limitation by attributes of good, evil, morality, ethics, or justice. What about fairness? Also, is it a matter of free choice? Is God choosing to hate the poor? Does She know She does it? Does God love and hate? Can She really hate the poor? Or, is His mistreatment of them purely business and not personal? I will consider these questions next.