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Old August 16th, 2010, 08:07 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
Being I'm not all knowing, I wouldn't know the best way, but here is one example:
God could have permitted everyone who believes in it to live with it in heaven, and not condemn people to hell for not believing in him.
Where's the fun in that for people? Where is the choice to be good and avoid hell?

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One would have to accept the fact that there would be another better way for an all knowing, loving, powerful being to work its plan. The currenly accepted way is very "human" in its construct.
Again, we're humans. Wouldn't it make sense for the "construct" to make sense to us?

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I find it odd, as a former christian, that people so willingly accept what people tell them a book says without legitimate thought.
not following what you mean... you mean people don't bother reading the text and taking the next step to understand what it means?

If so, as a former Christian turned atheist who returned to the church, those aren't Christians I know. But, that (your assertion) was what I believed when I was an astheist.

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The whole idea of how this god works is nothing expected of a supernatural being, but one of hundred of years of human tinkering with an ideal.
interstingly enough the documentsdare ancient and been startlingly well preserved as to content. I have many friends who read coine greek and I asked them about the NT. They all said how surprised they were at the fidelity of the text. Now, not bneing able to read coine they could bne lying to me but I doubt it. Also, Jewsih traditions are ancient and they have a well preserved history. It isn't as much tinkering as you might believe. Now, certainly philospohers have engaged the concept for thousands of years. Does a subject that has enganged philosphers for thousands of years sound simplistic and a matter of tinkering or does it sound like a very complex system to investigate?
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Old August 17th, 2010, 03:53 AM   #22
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Where's the fun in that for people? Where is the choice to be good and avoid hell?



Again, we're humans. Wouldn't it make sense for the "construct" to make sense to us?



not following what you mean... you mean people don't bother reading the text and taking the next step to understand what it means?

If so, as a former Christian turned atheist who returned to the church, those aren't Christians I know. But, that (your assertion) was what I believed when I was an astheist.



interstingly enough the documentsdare ancient and been startlingly well preserved as to content. I have many friends who read coine greek and I asked them about the NT. They all said how surprised they were at the fidelity of the text. Now, not bneing able to read coine they could bne lying to me but I doubt it. Also, Jewsih traditions are ancient and they have a well preserved history. It isn't as much tinkering as you might believe. Now, certainly philospohers have engaged the concept for thousands of years. Does a subject that has enganged philosphers for thousands of years sound simplistic and a matter of tinkering or does it sound like a very complex system to investigate?

Why would there need to be a choice to avoid hell? How is that fun for anyone?
Yes it would make sense to be more of a human construct, but then again, it would also make more sense for humans to construct a god that adheres to human concepts
Many people "understand" what the bible means. But when more than two groups get together, they can't seem to agree on what it means. One group accuses the other group of not being christian....blah blah blah.
Add to that, people can't decide on rather or not to take the bible literally or symbolically. It's all a big mess.
The problem with the whole bible/god thing is that it can't be proven correct one way or the other. It's impossible to prove something that is based solely on a book and individual beliefs.
Those who wish to believe in it do so via faith, nothing else. By definition, it requires no facts, simply belief.
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Old August 17th, 2010, 03:44 PM   #23
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Why would there need to be a choice to avoid hell? How is that fun for anyone?
Because if one chooses to have fun raping and killing women that person should be held accountable. If not in this life, then the next.

Anticipating a response: the threat of hell is not a control mechanism to get people to be good for fear of punishment. Do you behave morally to avoid arrest or becuse it is the right thing to do? Christians seek to be good in order to show respect to God and to do what is morally right.

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Yes it would make sense to be more of a human construct, but then again, it would also make more sense for humans to construct a god that adheres to human concepts
Many people "understand" what the bible means.
But God quite specifically does not conform to human concepts. Go read Job... or just the last chapter of it.

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But when more than two groups get together, they can't seem to agree on what it means. One group accuses the other group of not being christian....blah blah blah.
This is the point that Scrouton makes. He said heresay is in the minute differences not the large ones. Regardless, you're describing human behavior. We argue and disagree all the time and religion many regard as vitally important to "get it right."

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Add to that, people can't decide on rather or not to take the bible literally or symbolically. It's all a big mess.
Here again you describe people. Different people view the text differently. For my part I regard literalism as silly. The parables are just one example.

Further, the OT is tremendously complicated. Ancvient Hebrew was structured on three letter roots whicg also corresponded to numbers. What this means is that sentences are tightly wound and densely loaded with information that is subject to interpretation. Now there will be majority and minority views but there will never, imo, be a complete consensus. And it causes me no pain.

Martin Luther struggled with this tremendously.. to understand... to see God as good. He was a notoriously detailed confessor. J. von Staupitz in exasperation once told him, roughly, ~Martin it is not God who is angry with you but you who are angry with God. Tend to those things which are yours to tend and leave the rest to God.~

We are not meant to always "get it." That is hard to accept for many of us.

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The problem with the whole bible/god thing is that it can't be proven correct one way or the other. It's impossible to prove something that is based solely on a book and individual beliefs.
Those who wish to believe in it do so via faith, nothing else. By definition, it requires no facts, simply belief.
Why does this matter? Does God exist? No one can know until they do know. At which point it is too late. Faith is belief without proof. Proof is belief without faith. God requires faith.. many people demand proof. They'll be disappointed. Read the last chapter of Job.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 04:34 AM   #24
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Because if one chooses to have fun raping and killing women that person should be held accountable. If not in this life, then the next.
Why should they be held accountable in the next life?
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the threat of hell is not a control mechanism to get people to be good for fear of punishment.
That's an opinion I don't share with you, sorry.
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But God quite specifically does not conform to human concepts.
Weel, we are supposedly modeled after God, god loves, hates, kills, creates, interacts with people, he was born, he died ...seems like God is pretty much conform to all human concepts.
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This is the point that Scrouton makes. He said heresay is in the minute differences not the large ones.
I would say the Gospels not agreeing with the life of Jesus in detail is a big difference! I guess many people don't though.
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We argue and disagree all the time and religion many regard as vitally important to "get it right."
When a perfect all knowing being is involved, there should be no argument. If there is, then obviously the will of this being isn't strong enough to show all the mere mortals down here that he is the one and true way.
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...the OT is tremendously complicated.
Of course it is because people wrote it, not God or any other god. Add to the fact that the books of the bible were put together by men, not God or any god. Humans complicate things that aren't perfect to begin with.
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Why does this matter?
Because if God could be proven to exist or not, beyond any doubt, it would change the coarse of humanity.
But it will never happen.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 06:46 PM   #25
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Why should they be held accountable in the next life?
For those who believe in the notion of an eternal soul punishment in the next life is a consequence of bad behavior in the current life. There's nothing terribly obscure about that. For those who don't believe in an eternal soul.. it matters not.

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That's an opinion I don't share with you, sorry.
As a person of faith I'm telling you how I and my co-religionists view it. It is your prerogative, one supposes, to believe that we do not think what I just told you we think.

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Weel, we are supposedly modeled after God, god loves, hates, kills, creates, interacts with people, he was born, he died ...seems like God is pretty much conform to all human concepts.
That is a very limited view. God chose to embrace a human form for about 30 years. God did all those things you describe (sotra - who does he hate? Where's your evidence). However, God, created Life the Universeand Everything, something very not human. God predates creation - not very human. Got is eternal and outside of time - not very human. I could go on but the basic point is that because you ascribe certain human traits and end there doesn't mean that there isn't more. Much more.

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I would say the Gospels not agreeing with the life of Jesus in detail is a big difference! I guess many people don't though.
And a fair point. You could go further and look to the OT for many more incongruities. But, the differences being large I guess for Scrouton they wouldn't be heretical. lol.

I could offer explanations to you for all of that but I fairly confident you wouldn't buy it so I'll just offer you two competing modern sources. The first you can find in many works which discuss and describe the Documentary Hypothesis which has been around a long time. Fascination literary sleuthing regardless of one's believe in God. The other is a challenge to the hypothesis which, of course, I cannot currently recall the title... but it offers a critique of method which suggests that investigating a religious text for authorship (plural) is quite different than for other purposes. In any event - both very interesting.

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When a perfect all knowing being is involved, there should be no argument. If there is, then obviously the will of this being isn't strong enough to show all the mere mortals down here that he is the one and true way.
Why is that? You're talking about people... not God. People are inherently fallible. Disagreement should be expected.

"one true way" that would work for automotons. However, if you give people free will disagreement is inevitable.

Also, not sure if I offered up this point in this thread or not... think of how these questions have occupied thinkers, theologians, philosophers, farmers and tailors for thousands of years.

To make a silly analogy... recall in the Matrix when the man in black said that the "perfect" worlds didn't work?

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Of course it is because people wrote it, not God or any other god. Add to the fact that the books of the bible were put together by men, not God or any god. Humans complicate things that aren't perfect to begin with.
haha.... so, who is more open minded? You who are certain God does not exist or me who considers that he might not?

See the above reference though for OT authorship etc.

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Because if God could be proven to exist or not, beyond any doubt, it would change the coarse of humanity.
But it will never happen.
That's true (on both points) but as I said.... Why does this matter? Does God exist? No one can know until they do know. At which point it is too late. Faith is belief without proof. Proof is belief without faith. God requires faith.. many people demand proof. They'll be disappointed. Read the last chapter of Job.
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Old August 20th, 2010, 03:57 AM   #26
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For those who believe in the notion of an eternal soul punishment in the next life is a consequence of bad behavior in the current life. There's nothing terribly obscure about that.
But that's not an answer to "why".
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...the basic point is that because you ascribe certain human traits and end there doesn't mean that there isn't more. Much more.
And because people attribute "much more" to God doesn't mean there is more to it. People have an ability to make things up supernatural when it can't be explained. This includes the creation of everything that is. "If I can't answer it, make it supernatural. Next!" That's intellectually dishonest IMO.
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I could offer explanations to you for all of that but I fairly confident you wouldn't buy it..
I'd "buy" anything that makes logical sense. Thus far, no one has been able to show it.
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Why is that? You're talking about people... not God. People are inherently fallible. Disagreement should be expected.
So a god can create everything that is, but can't convince a group of people to agree on something? Come on now....
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You who are certain God does not exist...
Not at all, nor did I say that. I believe the christian god doesn't exist - big difference.
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God requires faith..
Good. I beleive God doesn't exist from my own faith.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 11:34 AM   #27
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But that's not an answer to "why".
justice

Also from a purely human perspective it answers the question, "Why can cheaters prosper and an honest man fail?"

For my part I really don't much consider the point. Too often it gets bound up into notions of "scared straight" types of faith (though thaty's mostly the allegation of a non-believer rather than the actual belief of the Christian)

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And because people attribute "much more" to God doesn't mean there is more to it. People have an ability to make things up supernatural when it can't be explained. This includes the creation of everything that is. "If I can't answer it, make it supernatural. Next!" That's intellectually dishonest IMO.
Your dedcribing "the God of the Gaps." I don't ascribe that that theory nor do any of the people of faith that I know. This is another argument usually assigned to Christians by non-Christians as a form of mockery. Now, don't think I am unaware of some bafflingly odd Christians who believe in Jesus horses and the like. But this discussion shouldn't presume that the oddest beliefs are common and acceped by all. They aren't.

Further, if you limit God in the sense that there isn't more, much more you've made God part of creation rather than creator. It all gets back to Anselm, and I have noted his premise assumes the conclusion. So,we're once again back to the notion of faith.

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I'd "buy" anything that makes logical sense. Thus far, no one has been able to show it.
There are a huge number of resources out there that describe the text (I'm mostly referring to the OT here) in great detail that offer up very strong reasons why the text is the way it is.

The easiest explanation is the distinction between the oeral and the written traditions. Other sources of contradiction have to do with simply understanding the text better (in historical and cultural context etc).

There's a fairly readable book called Who Wrote the Bible and a response called Who Really Wrote the Bible that are very interesting for a lot of reasons. Read them. Draw your own conclusions.

There's another called the Birth of Monotheism that touches on a lot of similar issues.

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So a god can create everything that is, but can't convince a group of people to agree on something? Come on now....
Back to free will and fallibility. God didn't make robots.

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Not at all, nor did I say that. I believe the christian god doesn't exist - big difference.
ok. describe this God?

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Good. I beleive God doesn't exist from my own faith.
clarify?
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 11:52 AM   #28
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justice
Justice in this life isn't enough?

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Your dedcribing "the God of the Gaps." I don't ascribe that that theory nor do any of the people of faith that I know. This is another argument usually assigned to Christians by non-Christians as a form of mockery.
Call it what you want, it doesn't matter. It happens. One could make the case that this is why all religions are started - to fill in the gaps of knowledge. Mockery? It depends on the person I suppose.

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Further, if you limit God in the sense that there isn't more, much more you've made God part of creation rather than creator.
Likewise, one can make God more than it is.

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There are a huge number of resources out there that describe the text (I'm mostly referring to the OT here) in great detail that offer up very strong reasons why the text is the way it is. The easiest explanation is the distinction between the oeral and the written traditions. Other sources of contradiction have to do with simply understanding the text better (in historical and cultural context etc).
I find that any god that needs people to explain "why" something is one way, when the god itself couldn't do it, isn't worth much.
Christianity should be simple to understand, simple to grasp and be these ways to everyone in every facet of the planet. There should be no need for one to have to turn to a 'professional' to explain why something is written one way - if the belief is to be for everyone throughout all time.
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Back to free will and fallibility. God didn't make robots.
Free will is a man made concept to give God a free pass of ultimate responsibility. Period. True free will doesn't exist if the christian God exists as described in the bible. And God did make robots - angels. That didn't go over too well when Lucifer rebelled/revolted.
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ok. describe this God?
The christian god is described in the bible. I don't prescribe to any god, but to the possibility of one existing - just not the christian one.
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clarify?
From my own personal experience and many (almost wasted) years as a practicing christian
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 01:59 PM   #29
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Justice in this life isn't enough?
[COLOR=#003399]Pete : The Preacher said it absolved us.
[COLOR=#800080]Ulysses Everett McGill : For him, not for the law. I'm surprised at you, Pete, I gave you credit for more brains than Delmar.
[COLOR=#003399]Delmar O'Donnell : But they was witnesses that seen us redeemed.
[COLOR=#800080]Ulysses Everett McGill : That's not the issue Delmar. Even if that did put you square with the Lord, the State of Mississippi's a little more hard-nosed.
[laughs]
[COLOR=#800080]Ulysses Everett McGill : Baptism! You two are just dumber than a bag of hammers!

You're running afoul of the notion of multiple sovereigns.

The Feds have their law. The states have theirs and so does God.

Further, I cannot and do not know what will occur after I (or anyone for that matter) shuffle off this mortal coil.

So, your question is certainly legit but it is impossible to answer with anything other than speculation. This is another of the topics with shelves and shelves of literature devoted to it. The concept of hell, who belongs there and what it would be like. It a thread unto itself.

You're running afoul of the notion of multiple sovereigns
Call it what you want, it doesn't matter. It happens. One could make the case that this is why all religions are started - to fill in the gaps of knowledge. [/quote]

Certainly one could. But as I said, neither nor any of the religious people I know do so. The only people who I know that do this are atheists lobbing scorn at people of faith without taking the time to find out that the people of faith don't ascribe to that POV.

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Mockery? It depends on the person I suppose.
from eitgher side of the issue too

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Likewise, one can make God more than it is.
Nope. And this is where we keep having our disagreement. "God is that thing no greater than which may be conceived." So you cannot, by definition, attribute more to God that is there. That's Anselm's definition. I've pointed out to you that this is a premise the presumes the conclusion which makes it inherently circular. It is not a good logical proof - quite the contrary. Which is why I keep going back to Keirkegaard (probably misspelling it every time in different ways). He said in essence that it impossible to know if God exists and logical proofs for his existnce fail. Ultimately it is an issue of faith - not logic.

To require proof of God indicates the absence of faith. Faith functions in the absence of proof.

Lastly, God is God and limiting God to human understanding shrinks God into one of those gaps.

Job 38:4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.

God is telling Job tough shit if he doesn't understand God. God is God. God makes the rules and our complete understanding is not gonna happen. So it goes. It is, in essence, a declaration that we must accept that we will often not know God's purpose and he has no obligation to clarify the matter for you. The line cracks me up because I accept it and I run into so many people who have this difficulty with it... it is a very fair difficulty to have and I struggled with it for years. But now, as I said, I mostly find it amusing. It brings a great deal of comfort. Some will regard that as a cop-out. Believe me, for me it was much easier believing that the comment was just plain messed up.

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I find that any god that needs people to explain "why" something is one way, when the god itself couldn't do it, isn't worth much.
Christianity should be simple to understand, simple to grasp and be these ways to everyone in every facet of the planet. There should be no need for one to have to turn to a 'professional' to explain why something is written one way - if the belief is to be for everyone throughout all time.
Matter of opinion. I disagree and find the process of studying the texts fascinating and very useful in addressing many of the issues I encounter in life. Others don't.

Do you read koine greek? Aramaic? Ancient Hebrew? Latin? If not you'd have to rely on professionals to get at the material in the text. That's just a practical consideration.


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Free will is a man made concept to give God a free pass of ultimate responsibility. Period. True free will doesn't exist if the christian God exists as described in the bible. And God did make robots - angels. That didn't go over too well when Lucifer rebelled/revolted.
Another opinion and an issue that also takes up shelves and shelves of library space. God doesn't need to find a way to give himself a free pass. God doesn't need to explain himself to you or me. To suggest he does is to shrink God into something less than he is in order to fit a perception of yours.

Robots: I was referring to people but your reference is, afaik, spot on.

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The christian god is described in the bible. I don't prescribe to any god, but to the possibility of one existing - just not the christian one.
Why not that one? What ones do you think more likely than others?

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From my own personal experience and many (almost wasted) years as a practicing christian
Gotcha, I just didn't understand what you meant. But, I think you are saying that your experiences as a Christian lead you to conclude that the Judeo-Christian God doesn't exist?
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Old August 24th, 2010, 04:14 AM   #30
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You're running afoul of the notion of multiple sovereigns.
There's no proof of any god or judgement after you die, but there is in this life. There's no need (IMO) to punish a person multiple times for one offense, so justice in this life should suffice. When one wants punishment after death and during this life, I question rather or not they want justice, or simply like to see people suffer.
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Nope..."God is that thing no greater than which may be conceived." So you cannot, by definition, attribute more to God that is there.
You assume that is the correct definition....Why? To me, God (assuming it exists) is the creator of everything. Period. You are attempting to make God more than it is - a creator - by looking for the most grand definition you can find.
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To require proof of God indicates the absence of faith. Faith functions in the absence of proof.
No argument there really. But it's interesting that people of faith can believe without proof, yet when evidence is presented to the contrary, they "over look" them siting faith. That's having your cake and eating it too, IMO.
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Lastly, God is God and limiting God to human understanding shrinks God into one of those gaps.
Agreed. But no one can truly understand God, so God's understanding would be limited. However, God could make it so that he is truly understood. If not, he's not all powerful.
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I...find the process of studying the texts fascinating and very useful in addressing many of the issues I encounter in life.
The bible is good for setting examples on how to live. When people make it more than that is when they get into trouble IMO.
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God doesn't need to find a way to give himself a free pass.
You're right - it's the people that need to. God created everything or allowed it to be created. Therefore, God can not escape the fact that he is ultimately responsible for everything. Free Will is a concept that tried to circumvent that. It's been successful to believers (shock) but not to many others (again, shock). Why? Because believers refuse to believe that their God is the culprit in all things good & bad in their life.
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Why not that one?
Because the christian god concept doesn't make sense to me and I see no evidence of it being true. Even after living as a christian for years (yes I was fooled, unfortunately - but I have seen the light now).
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Old August 24th, 2010, 06:16 AM   #31
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There's no proof of any god or judgement after you die, but there is in this life.
A fact not in controversy - lol

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There's no need (IMO) to punish a person multiple times for one offense, so justice in this life should suffice.
Well, that's one of those things we really don't have much say-so with. Presuming there is a God he really doesn't much care what you think.

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When one wants punishment after death and during this life, I question rather or not they want justice, or simply like to see people suffer.
As I said before, I don't make the decisions on this and I cannot know how they are made nor is it necessarily someting I'd wish upon anyone etc etc etc.

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You assume that is the correct definition....Why? To me, God (assuming it exists) is the creator of everything. Period. You are attempting to make God more than it is - a creator - by looking for the most grand definition you can find.
It isn't my definition and it is as grand as you can get. To you blah blah. I'm telling you how Christians define their God. You're free to think God is the sugar smacks frog or pee wee herman if it pleases you

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No argument there really. But it's interesting that people of faith can believe without proof, yet when evidence is presented to the contrary, they "over look" them siting faith. That's having your cake and eating it too, IMO.
What evidence do you have of God not existing? It is very hard to prove a negative proposition.

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Agreed. But no one can truly understand God, so God's understanding would be limited. However, God could make it so that he is truly understood. If not, he's not all powerful.
God's understanding is not limited. Our understanding of him will always be limited.

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The bible is good for setting examples on how to live. When people make it more than that is when they get into trouble IMO.
How does one make it more than it is?

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You're right - it's the people that need to. God created everything or allowed it to be created. Therefore, God can not escape the fact that he is ultimately responsible for everything. Free Will is a concept that tried to circumvent that. It's been successful to believers (shock) but not to many others (again, shock). Why? Because believers refuse to believe that their God is the culprit in all things good & bad in their life.
I don't think that's the case. Many many people get angry with God. Hell, Martin Luther's confessor chewed him out after one of hias marathon confessions saying something to the effect of, "Martin, God is not angry with you. It is you who is angry with God. Tend to those things within your control and give the rest to God."

See again that passage in Job. etc.

I just don't buy that point. Good bad or indifferent we live in God's creation. Obviously he's made the rules.

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Because the christian god concept doesn't make sense to me and I see no evidence of it being true. Even after living as a christian for years (yes I was fooled, unfortunately - but I have seen the light now).
ok... but as I said God doesn't owe you anything and has gone on record, so to speak, saying he has no intentional of explaining himself to you or me.

evidence.... back that whole faith thingy
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Old August 24th, 2010, 06:54 AM   #32
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Well, that's one of those things we really don't have much say-so with. Presuming there is a God he really doesn't much care what you think.
Which wasn't the point. The point was why does a person have to need to have another punished in the afterlife after they have been punished while alive? That denotes a serious mental flaw IMO.
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It isn't my definition and it is as grand as you can get.
It's the definition you used - why is that? But you're right, it's not your definition. You used someone else's then tried to defend it. Can you not come up with your own definition?
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I'm telling you how Christians define their God.
A grand assumption that you can claim to know how all christians define their god. I'm sure they all appreciate your efforts to claim to know how each and every one of them define god. That's one of christians #1 enemies - critical self thinking. It's much easier (and beneficial to the faith) not to promote self thinking - letting others do it for you and tell you what to think/believe.
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What evidence do you have of God not existing? It is very hard to prove a negative proposition.
It's harder to prove something exists when there's nothing to show that it does. But the christian god is found in faith, which, be definition, doesn't rely on facts, but belief. Believers claim God exists. I say "OK, prove it" They can't. Thus the only conclusion is that, if their God existed, proof should be available. It's not. So it must not exist. To say one doesn't believe God exists, doesn't require proof to show it doesn't exist, it requires proof that it does exist. There is none.
Personally, anything that I attributed to God was proven to me to be nothing more than coincidence or a myriad of other things that doesn't denote God. Add to that the whole christian god concept makes no sense at all, the only conclusion is the christian god (God) doesn't exist. It's a simple concept to grasp, but christians make it so difficult because they fear it to be true.
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God's understanding is not limited. Our understanding of him will always be limited.
Irrlevant. An all powerful being could make people understand him entirely. He doesn't. That either means he can't (thus not all powerful and not a god) or won't (questionable motives). Either way, not worth worship IMO.
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How does one make it more than it is?
Claiming it to be God's Word. It's a book. For cryin' out loud, God didn't even write it himself. He can create all that is but needed ghost writers to write a book?!? Come on now.....
Even so, he couldn't get the ghost writers to write the same story of his (supposed) son not one, not twice, but on at least four different occasions.
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Good bad or indifferent we live in God's creation.
Opinion. But if it's true, we must question God's ability to create a decent creation - or at least control it. Certainly, this creation isn't perfect. Can a perfect being create an inperfect creation? Not if it's perfect, as it wouldn't know imperfection.
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God doesn't owe you anything...
Another opinion. I think he owes a lot of people a lot of explaing: "God, you got a lot of 'plaing to do!"
People like to think that God is untouchable - owes us nothing. I find that to be an almost anti-human concept. He created everything that is, including us, and allows everything that happens to happen, including to us, yet doesn't owe us an explaination? Why not? Because he is GOD? Pft...
Dictator maybe, but not a god.

Last edited by connermt; August 24th, 2010 at 06:58 AM.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 07:15 AM   #33
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Which wasn't the point. The point was why does a person have to need to have another punished in the afterlife after they have been punished while alive? That denotes a serious mental flaw IMO.
Like I said before it often functions to make sense of why a scumbag is successful and the honest man destitute. I don't ascribe to that notion but many do.

Why punished twice... you'll have to take that one up with God.

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It's the definition you used - why is that? But you're right, it's not your definition. You used someone else's then tried to defend it. Can you not come up with your own definition?
Do you drive a car some one else designed? Why not build your own car?

Do you accept the defintion of X Y or Z in the dictionary? Why not come up with your own?

There's little value in reinventing the wheel

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
A grand assumption that you can claim to know how all christians define their god. I'm sure they all appreciate your efforts to claim to know how each and every one of them define god. That's one of christians #1 enemies - critical self thinking. It's much easier (and beneficial to the faith) not to promote self thinking - letting others do it for you and tell you what to think/believe.
Anselm's definition has been around about a thousand years or so. But, you're right, it is probably true that the definition I gave is not well known by most Christians though it will be for those who are the critical thinkers you refer to who have done a lot of reading about their faith.

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It's harder to prove something exists when there's nothing to show that it does.
Another fact not in dispute. I have no evidence of God's existence. Nor, I presume, does anyone else.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
But the christian god is found in faith, which, be definition, doesn't rely on facts, but belief. Believers claim God exists. I say "OK, prove it" They can't. Thus the only conclusion is that, if their God existed, proof should be available. It's not. So it must not exist. To say one doesn't believe God exists, doesn't require proof to show it doesn't exist, it requires proof that it does exist. There is none.
Agreed, no evidence to demonstrate the existence of God. However my comment was a response to your assertion (below italicized) that evidence of his non existence exists and people of faith choose to ignore it.

But it's interesting that people of faith can believe without proof, yet when evidence is presented to the contrary, they "over look" them siting faith.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
Personally, anything that I attributed to God was proven to me to be nothing more than coincidence or a myriad of other things that doesn't denote God. Add to that the whole christian god concept makes no sense at all, the only conclusion is the christian god (God) doesn't exist. It's a simple concept to grasp, but christians make it so difficult because they fear it to be true.
You are holding God to human rules. If he is constrained by human rules he's not God.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
Irrlevant. An all powerful being could make people understand him entirely. He doesn't. That either means he can't (thus not all powerful and not a god) or won't (questionable motives). Either way, not worth worship IMO.
ok

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Claiming it to be God's Word. It's a book. For cryin' out loud, God didn't even write it himself. He can create all that is but needed ghost writers to write a book?!? Come on now..... Even so, he couldn't get the ghost writers to write the same story of his (supposed) son not one, not twice, but on at least four different occasions.
There are a lot more inconsistencies to be found than that. But using your premises... humans wrote the books of the Bible. People are fallible. Different people remember different things from shared experiences. You should read witness reports... they often vary wildly.

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Opinion.
Belief based on faith

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
But if it's true, we must question God's ability to create a decent creation - or at least control it. Certainly, this creation isn't perfect. Can a perfect being create an inperfect creation? Not if it's perfect, as it wouldn't know imperfection.
I would think that would be easier than creating a perfect world

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
Another opinion. I think he owes a lot of people a lot of explaing: "God, you got a lot of 'plaing to do!"
Opinion based on the text of the Bible. One is free to accept or reject this as one chooses.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
People like to think that God is untouchable - owes us nothing. I find that to be a less than human concept. He created everything that is, including us, and allows everything that happens to happen, including to us, yet doesn't owe us an explaination? Why not? Because he is GOD? Pft...
Dictator maybe, but not a god.
I don't share that view
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Old August 24th, 2010, 07:53 AM   #34
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Do you drive a car some one else designed? Why not build your own car?

Do you accept the defintion of X Y or Z in the dictionary? Why not come up with your own?
There's much more value in understanding a concept. Referring to someone else's definition tends to suggest that you can't come up with your own. Just an observation.
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You are holding God to human rules. If he is constrained by human rules he's not God.
Absolutely. And the human rules.constraints are good vs evil, punishment, creator that looks like us, humans are the "best" of all creation - the list continues. The whole christian god concept is very human.
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...humans wrote the books of the Bible.
Exactly my point. Humans wrote God's Word. God couldn't do it himself? But let's assume that he needed people to write this book (odd that he can't do that but create the entire universe, but whatever....). If it's so important, wouldn't it make sense to ensure that there are no issues with it? Just looking at the gospels, there are parts in one missing in another, things being said in one and not the other, etc. That sounds like an error that a perfect being wouldn't be able to make, much less make at all.
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Belief based on faith
Six or one, ? dozen of the other.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 09:20 AM   #35
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There's much more value in understanding a concept. Referring to someone else's definition tends to suggest that you can't come up with your own. Just an observation.
Disagree. People use language to communicate. This requires consistency of terms. If you redefine words willy nilly you'll have trouble making sense to anyone. A definition that's been employed by many of the brightest minds in human history over the course of a thousand years would seem a good one to rely on.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
Absolutely. And the human rules.constraints are good vs evil, punishment, creator that looks like us, humans are the "best" of all creation - the list continues. The whole christian god concept is very human.
I don't hold that opinion and havew explained why.

What we understand about God is very human.

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Exactly my point. Humans wrote God's Word. God couldn't do it himself?
I suppose he could but you seem to suggest that because he didn't that translates to God not existing. If he could write the book he could much more easily not write it. This is not a zero sum game.

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Originally Posted by connermt View Post
But let's assume that he needed people to write this book (odd that he can't do that but create the entire universe, but whatever....). If it's so important, wouldn't it make sense to ensure that there are no issues with it? Just looking at the gospels, there are parts in one missing in another, things being said in one and not the other, etc. That sounds like an error that a perfect being wouldn't be able to make, much less make at all.
Like I said, witnesses to the samer event can all have very different descriptions of what happened. That is human. So were the Gospel writers.

You keep placing demands on God that he behave or write or etc in a manner that you find acceptable. That isn't going to happen. So why worry about it at all?
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Old August 24th, 2010, 09:47 AM   #36
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Disagree....I don't hold that opinion and havew explained why.
That's OK
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...you seem to suggest that because he didn't that translates to God not existing.
Not in total. It questions the existence
Quote:
Like I said, witnesses to the samer event can all have very different descriptions of what happened. That is human. So were the Gospel writers.
And as I said, if it's that important, God should have made them accurate - not allowing for differing human opinions or statement of facts. If you are using a ghost writer to write your book, knowing the entire human race would rely on it, would you be satisfied with errors? I wouldn't
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You keep placing demands on God that he behave or write or etc in a manner that you find acceptable.
Not at all. Simply showing evidence that should lead to questioning.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 10:58 AM   #37
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Not in total. It questions the existence
well that was a long way around the block to state the obvious

We have no proof of God and we cannot know if he exists or not. finding reasons is a waste of time. Believe or don't. The problem with offering up bases for why one doesn't believe is that if these bases are shown to be false does that require the doubter to believe?

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And as I said, if it's that important, God should have made them accurate - not allowing for differing human opinions or statement of facts. If you are using a ghost writer to write your book, knowing the entire human race would rely on it, would you be satisfied with errors? I wouldn't
The entire human race doesn't rely on it but as above... reasons to not believe abound.

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Not at all. Simply showing evidence that should lead to questioning.
I think you are implying that people of faith don't consider these points?

We do.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 07:24 AM   #38
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We have no proof of God and we cannot know if he exists or not. finding reasons is a waste of time.
I don't agree. Finding a reason to believe or not is important to the person in question. There has to be a reason for one to believe, right? Rather or not it's a fact of truth is another story.
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I think you are implying that people of faith don't consider these points?
Not at all. You can consider all you want, but it comes down to what you want to believe or not, independent on all else.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 12:18 PM   #39
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I don't agree. Finding a reason to believe or not is important to the person in question.
That's a non sequitur. I said you cannot prove god exists or does not exist.

Having a reason to believe or not is a different question. Yes, I suppose most people would want a reason.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 02:12 PM   #40
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That's a non sequitur. I said you cannot prove god exists or does not exist.

Having a reason to believe or not is a different question. Yes, I suppose most people would want a reason.
You said "We have no proof of God and we cannot know if he exists or not. finding reasons is a waste of time." I disagreed with the bolded part of your comment. I agree with the first part
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