Theological Kobayashi Maru

Theological Kobayashi Maru September 28, 2013

Recently on the blog Unreasonable Faith, theological arguments were likened to the Kobayashi Maru scenario in Star Trek. For fans, it needs no explanation, but for others, it is a training simulation that is unwinnable.

I wonder whether, like James T. Kirk, many of the folks discussing this at Unreasonable Faith (as well as many religious and other people in general) may not have missed the point. Theology is indeed unwinnable, in the sense that it is about exploring the unfathomable and pondering the unprovable. There are a great many theological and philosophical conundrums which we ponder, not in the hope that we may cleverly reprogram the computer so that we can win, but so that we may learn from precisely the experience of wresting with an unwinnable situation.

This recent Dilbert cartoon made me think of this topic, too. Sometimes even when an argument is winnable, “winning” doesn’t feel like “winning.”


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