Humans have been struggling with the meaning of life ever since we woke up many millenniums ago and discovered we had a brain sophisticated enough to dabble in the art of wondering.† Why do some die and others do not?† Why did that rock fall on my brother's head and kill him?† What does it mean to be dead?† How did I come to be here in the first place?† Is there some force beyond my five senses that controls or influences these things?† If there is some force, should I try to keep it happy so it won't hurt me?
These questions helped create the mind set necessary for us to think that Gods might exist and so we created them.† They were designed to explain away the unexplainable.† Then science was developed and we began to think that perhaps there was no god, that science could explain away everything.† Then, as our science became more sophisticated, we began to realize that it couldn't explain away everything, so maybe, just maybe, there is a God after all???
"While theology may take God's existence as absolutely necessary on the basis of authority, faith or, revelation, many philosophers---and some theologians---have thought it possible to demonstrate by reason that there must be a God.† St. Thomas Aquinas, in the 13th century, formulated the famous 'five ways' by which God's existence can be demonstrated philosophically:
"1. The 'unmoved mover' argument.† We know that there is motion in the world; whatever is in motion is moved by another thing; this other thing also must be moved by something; to avoid an infinite regression, we must posit a 'first mover,' which is God.
"2. The 'nothing is caused by itself' argument.† For example, a table is brought into being by a carpenter, who is caused by his parents.† Again, we cannot go on to infinity, so there must be a first cause, which is God.
"3. The cosmological argument.† All physical things---even mountains, boulders, and rivers---come into being and go out of existence, no matter how long they last.† Therefore, because time is infinite, there must be some time at which none of these things existed.† But if there were nothing at that point in time, how could there be anything at all now, because nothing cannot cause anything?† Thus, there must always have been at least one necessary thing that is eternal, which is God.
"4. Objects in the world have differing degrees of qualities such as goodness.† But speaking of more or less goodness makes sense only by comparison with what is the maximum goodness, which is God.
"5. The teleological argument (argument by design).† Things in the world move toward goals, just as the arrow does not move toward its goal except by the archer's directing it.† Thus, there must be an intelligent designer who directs all things to their goals, and this is God" (N.Y. Public Library, Desk Reference, Third Edition, p. 328).
Although the above are interesting "proofs" of God's existence, I find that far more interesting proof exists in the research that has been done on those who have experienced past life regressions and near death experiences.† Also, quantum physics can provide a very interesting way of examining the possible existence of God.
In the final analysis, however, I believe that the most powerful argument for believing in the existence of God has to do with attitude.† If we are optimistic and elect to believe in God, then, this tends to elicit positive life experiences AND if we are right, then, we stand to win after life as well as during life.† If we are pessimistic and elect now to believe in God, then, this tends to elicit negative life experiences AND if we are wrong, then, we stand to lose everything after life.†
So, when it comes time to make a movie, what message should be in that movie about God?†
The answer to that question depends on the spiritual philosophy you develop. This course will help you develop that philosophy.
Godís Hollywood is a course designed to help you understand and appreciate the art form known as movies. You may use the knowledge obtained to appreciate movies more fully. Or, you may use the knowledge to become involved in making movies. However, the best use of the knowledge from this course is for you to grow spiritually. If you grow spiritually you will tend to live a richer, more fulfilling, happier, healthier life. If you think creatively about the Role of God in human existence, you will be more capable of understanding yourself and others. As you become a more understanding and literate human, your ability to both appreciate and create great films grows accordingly.