XKCD : The Greatest God

While Randall Munroe’s giant posters (LOTR have become the more popular format, for me the true genius of XKCD has always been its ability to break down a really complex concept into a single frame and few words. The latest comic exemplifies it –

A God who holds the record for eating the most skateboards is greater than the God who does not hold that record

The premise of an all powerful God rapidly spirals out of control if you just follow the logic. If God is all powerful, wouldn’t an incomprehensible God indifferent to humanity be greater than a petulant, jealous, vengeful one. Or even a merciful and just one, after all those qualities are just as human.

A truly all powerful God would just ‘be’, without a care for who disobeys him. In fact, a God who can be disobeyed must be lesser than a God who cannot be defied. At which point there becomes no real distinction between God and the fabric of reality, the inescapable laws of math, logic and physics.

Conversely, a God who does exist with all those human qualities cannot be all powerful. This God is more like an advanced civilization/entity whose advanced knowledge/technology seemed magical and supernatural to our primitive minds. In which case, isn’t it reasonable to wonder, if we humans could build a drill to pierce the heavens? (yes, you should watch Gurren Lagann)


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