Monday, April 14, 2008

Random Number Realities: A little fun with Pascal's Roulette

See Pascal's Roulette for information about what the hell these are:

Reality One: (Random numbers 3, 9 and 12 for each respective category of Deity, Doctrine, and Afterlife on my previous chart). Pantheist deity with a doctrine of works and ritual, and an afterlife of Heaven, Reincarnation, or Oblivion. This is a rather odd theological/cosmological occurence, but it actually seems like it could just be a combination of karmic reincarnation (fueled by works), overseen by a collective energy kind of deity that only allows one to break the reincarnation through a certain combination of morality and obscure ritual accomplishment, with your fate being determined by the nature of the accomplishment. The Oblivion or Heaven thing could simply to different final outcomes, depending upon your inner character, or it could simply be that your reward is to become one with the pantheistic deity, and thus Heaven is Oblivion....

Reality Two: (Random numbers 6, 14, and 8). No God, all four criteria judged, with an afterlife of either Heaven or Oblivion. This is the interesting idea that there need not be an active deity overseeing you in order for there to be life after death. In this case, though, it seems odd, because you can presumably only attain a reward afterlife if you have faith, along with wisdom, good deeds, and ritual accomplishments of an unknown nature, even though there is nothing to have faith in. The reason why faith is criteria, however, is because it is necessary to have faith in the God that you are worshipping, which is supposedly the one exists. However, no God exists in this scenario, so faith is either moot and ignored, or one must have had "faith" in the existence of no Gods in order to attain the afterlife. This would be an interesting case of Pascal's Wager favoring atheism, if that interpretation were correct.

Reality Three: (Random numbers 3, 14, and 10). A pantheistic god, again. And all doctrine required, again. Afterlife is Heaven, Hell, or reincarnation. So, this is world energy god that requires you to undergo certain rituals, to have faith that a collective spiritual force exists in the world, for you to do good deeds, and for you to attain wisdom in order to go to attain a positive afterlife. Presumably, if you are on the way to attaining these goals, you would keep reincarnating until you reached them. And, if you, instead of attaining these goals, consistently proved oneself to be in opposition to other lives and opposed to collective energy god, along with doing bad deeds and refusing to perform the required rituals, or seek the required wisdom, would be sent away to the punishment afterlife. It's like a bizarre form of Judaism fused with Hinduism, to an extent.

Reality Four: (Random numbers 6, 1, and 10). No God, only faith, and Heaven, Hell, or Reincarnation. Interestingly, another reality where the hardcore (level 7 on the Dawkins scale) atheist is favored, apparently. I assume that Heaven is awarded to the hard atheists, and lesser atheists along with agnostics are reincarnated in order to give them a second chance. Those who had faith in false gods would be punished in Hell for their presumptions. A truly bizarre existence.

Reality Five: (Random numbers 1, 7, and 10). [sigh] Okay, monotheistic god judging by faith and ritual. That much is new, at least. Afterlife is Heaven, Hell, or Reincarnation as it has been for the last two realities. Now, this actually resembles the Judeo-Christian worldview fairly closely. It has their kind of God controlling it. That God judges according to faith (which the Christians like and the Jews presumably have anyway) and ritual (more problematic to the Christian, only problematic to the Jew if the rituals that he adheres happen to not be the ones that their deity is concerned with). And he sends non-believers to Hell, true believers to Heaven, and everyone in between is reincarnated until they can be clearly divided based upon the God's criteria for judgment.

Reality Six: (Random numbers 1, 12, and 3). Huh. Monotheistic god, with a Heaven and Hell (even closer to Christian worldview than the last one), who judges based on faith, works, and ritual. So, this would basically work just like Pascal's Wager, except that, instead of just non-believers going to Hell, it would also be people who were not sufficiently good, and people who did not perform the right specific actions necessary to get into heaven (circumcision, baptism, daily prayer, ritual scarring, blood letting, what have you). As such, it is still a little messy....

Reality Seven: (Random numbers 2, 7, and 10) Goddamn Hell, Heaven, and Reincarnation! Well, we've got a polytheism, and another faith and ritual method of judgment. So...this is basically just like Reality Five, except that there a significant number of anthropomorphic gods in control of deciding your fate and who need to be believed in, rather than just the one.

Conclusions: Theology is a bitch.

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