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Donna Rose wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Isn't the yearning for a "something" strong proof of God's existence?

For a better description of what I'm asking:

  • A person is thirsty.
  • He needs water to assuage that thirst and his body requires it to survive.
  • He finds the source of water and he drinks.
  • The finding of water gives the man the satisfaction his body needs.
  • His physical nature survives because his need for water has been satisfied.

I'm asking this in terms of spiritual hunger and the yearning therein. I don't think I'm trying to prove His existence because I want to be consoled or I'm afraid of the finality of death.

I realize I'm not couching the question correctly. Please explain what I'm trying to say, — stating it better than I — and then answer it for me. Crazy question, I know, but somehow, that finally helped me validate what I thought I believed — the existence of God.

This came to me years ago when I returned to the Faith. I had been absent for 30 years. One day I visited a little church in the mountain town. I stayed for a long time. In the span of a few hours, I had found answers to just about everything — most of which I've forgotten but I know I carry those answers within to this day. Confession followed, then Mass and Communion. What a beautiful day that was. After that, the Feast of Pentecost meant so much more to me. Now I understand — at least in a small way.

Thanks for your understanding and patience.



  { Isn't the yearning for something a strong proof of God's existence? }

Paul replied:

Dear Donna,

This is a very good point you make, one that my philosophy professor back in college (Peter Kreeft) makes in some of his books. Our natural desires point to something outside ourselves that satisfies them.

Within our human nature there is hunger, so there is food that satisfies it. There is thirst, and there is water to satisfy. There are also natural immaterial desires we have that have an external object that satiates: Our desire for ultimate truth, love, everlasting life, never-ending happiness ... all of these natural inclinations are ultimately satisfied only in God.

The two more obvious signs that have separated us from other animals is language and religion. Both seek that which transcends the senses and bodily experience, and both point to our experience as being spiritual people under God.

This observation of yours is not a scientific way to prove God's existence to an atheist, but it is a reasonable assessment when taking an honest look at human nature as a whole. In seeking satisfaction for our natural human inclinations, we can recognize that we are intrinsically ordered for temporal earthly life as well as eternal life with God.



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