(edited for clarity)

In the matter of gods we have only the testimony of men, and the means, motive, and opportunity to lie in their testimony. Given means motive and opportunity to lie, and no evidence of all that they speak the truth, then all gods are merely fictional characters. Those characters serve as anthropomorphic analogies. Those analogies serve as to provide decidability when we have no other means of deciding.

It is not that gods – like all units of measurement – are not useful. They are. Particularly for the intergenerational transfer of such units of measurement.

But there is no difference between Gandalf and Jehova and Allah other than that we make no false testimony to the existence of Gandalf, and we give false testimony to the existence of Jehova and Allah. We must give false testimony because we cannot give testimony of any other kind. It is not possible. None of us have observed the existence of any god that cannot be explained by more simple means.

We can however, give thanks to our ancestors. That is because we have ancestors worthy of our thanks. The reason for the fabrication of Jehova and Allah is that the people who invented those fictional characters had no ancestors worthy of their thanks.

Means, Motive, and Opportunity.

Guilty as Charged.

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