God According to Google: Searching for the Divine on a Search Engine

God and technology

I appreciate technology and while I understand that some persons cannot live without it, I do not agree.  I understand its importance, the ways in which it connects and advances us.  But, while a fan, I have not joined the crowd.  My vision is not blurred by the size of the crowd.  I can also still see that we now touch our phones more than we touch people, that while we are accessible, we are increasingly becoming more fragmented, that we look at a computer screen more readily than the eyes of another human being.

After some late night writing and reflecting, hearing and listening, I had an idea.  Every day, I search for God and seek His presence in the mundane as well as profound experiences of life.  I listen for His voice in His Word and in other spiritual writings.  I look for His face in my neighbors and the strangers that I pass.  I grope for His touch in nature, His cool breath in a summer breeze, His hands outstretched and reaching for me in the trees.  I practice a kind of liturgy as a stay at home mother and pastor, carrying the Bible in one hand and a diaper bag in another, praying and changing diapers, singing hymns and the alphabet song for the fifth time today.  But, what would I find if I searched for God on a search engine.  Google is my favorite so…

Apparently, God has His own Wikipedia page and a website: http://www.god.com.  These were the first and second entries.  Next, there were pictures of God, a dictionary definition of God, “50 simple proofs that http://www.godisimaginary.com and then God as defined by the Catholic Encyclopedia.  Surprisingly, God was not defined by The Bible; it doesn’t even appear.  The words of the prophets or the apostles does not appear.   So, Google’s not Christian, huh?  As I scrolled down the page, God had a Twitter account, a television station: God TV and there were many articles written about God.

Pages 2, 3 and 4 offer a Facebook page, a record company, books, movies and so much more!  Still, there is no offering of any text considered sacred by any faith community.  God in God’s own words does not appear.  This makes me wonder by what authority does technology inform us about God and what is the intent of the search engine in not offering sacred books for those searching for God on the Internet.  We are the hands of technology and tonight, I wonder what they are seeking after.

Or, could my search be saying that the Internet is not the place to look for God?  Instead, we should look up from our smart phones and computer screens and into the faces of our family, friends, neighbors and yes, the stranger and the immigrant.

God: 357,000,000 results in 0.24 seconds.  The spirituality of Google seems easily accessible.  God is just a click away.  It is fast but its faith is uncertain.  Stay connected to people.

PS There is also a website, http://www.googlinggod.com and a book Googling God: The Religious Landscape of People in their 20s and 30s.  Apparently, I am acting my age.

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