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Author Topic:   What to believe? Please offer input
Gzus
Inactive Member


Message 1 of 34 (28190)
12-31-2002 10:26 AM


After much debate, I have observed several conclusions.
Firstly, materialism leads directly to nihilism, since it erases the possibility of free will, where free will is defined as the following.
A free choice is made for a purpose which has meaning. A choice that has no purpose is a reflex. Randomness has no ‘meaning’ or ‘purpose’ and is therefore a reflex, hence Heisenberg doesn’t save free will.
Materialism also bars us from truth since in this case, ‘we’ are not conscious beings, consciousness is an illusion. The unattainability of truth in this case is reinforced by the argument ‘how do you know your senses aren’t fooling you?’, ‘how do you know that you’re sane?’.
Free will and truth are preserved only through self-justification loops (dogma/religion) where truth is made available to us through God. i.e.
God knows truth and truth is made accessible to me through him. Therefore the arguments ‘how do you know your senses aren’t fooling you?’ and ‘how do you know that you’re sane?’ are refuted by the statement, ‘God tells me otherwise’.
But, how do you value one self-justification loop over another? You don’t, all self-justification loops are equally irrefutable to the observer. Hence, all self-justification loops that claim to be ‘moral’ and yet profess damnation to those who do not choose to follow that particular loop are unjustified and therefore in contradiction of themselves.
Many, therefore choose to be agnostics, or they choose a happy self-justification loop, such as ‘God/the Gods know(s) truth and truth is made accessible to me through him/her/it/them, God/the Gods ha(s)(ve) a beard/tail/horn and love(s) us all very dearly and when we die we will all be very happy.
Or alternatively, they become Satanists or anarchists or they jump off tall buildings.
Please don't hesitate to offer your destructive rantings

Replies to this message:
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Gzus
Inactive Member


Message 2 of 34 (28191)
12-31-2002 10:30 AM


Eventually, a christian and a jew arguing about the validity of Christ's resurrection are comparable to myself and some other joe arguing about whether or not God has a tail.

Replies to this message:
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Gzus
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 34 (28194)
12-31-2002 10:41 AM
Reply to: Message 2 by Gzus
12-31-2002 10:30 AM


Ever seen a mormon and a baptist arguing about hell? Each one claiming how much hotter the other will burn.
1'you'll be skinned alive!'
2'well i'll just have you send down another level for that retort!'
1'God loves you! but if you go after his God, you'll burn!'
2'But on the contrary, my God loves you more, he even died for you! And if you don't love him back, he'll make you burn hotter!
1'Well mine died for you twice!'
2'and mine thrice!'

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Mr. Davies
Inactive Member


Message 4 of 34 (28199)
12-31-2002 12:44 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by Gzus
12-31-2002 10:41 AM


An even more entertaining cat fight would be between the "Jay-Dubs" and a set of Mormon Missionaries.
Everything begins with digs at each other's religios leadership and those that started them up. It's worth the price of admission.
------------------
When all else fails, check the manual

This message is a reply to:
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Gzus
Inactive Member


Message 5 of 34 (28253)
01-01-2003 4:58 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Mr. Davies
12-31-2002 12:44 PM


But, seriously, there's a message behind this post, personally, I don't really mind religion as long as the hypocrisy is removed, i.e. unfounded statements like
My religion's better than yours.
[This message has been edited by Gzus, 01-02-2003]

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 6 by Mike Holland, posted 01-02-2003 12:13 AM Gzus has not replied

  
Mike Holland
Member (Idle past 560 days)
Posts: 179
From: Sydney, NSW,Auistralia
Joined: 08-30-2002


Message 6 of 34 (28273)
01-02-2003 12:13 AM
Reply to: Message 5 by Gzus
01-01-2003 4:58 PM


As a teenager, for many years, I tried to believe that there was a basic TRUTH underlying all the religions. But eventually I gave up, and now I am an atheist.
I particularly liked the mystics, zen, sufi, christian, etc, but have now decided that they all use similar sensory deprivation techniques to produce similar delusions.
There are so many ridiculous cults out there. How can one blindly accept ANY belief without question!

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Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:46 AM Mike Holland has replied

  
Justaman
Inactive Member


Message 7 of 34 (34011)
03-10-2003 1:46 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by Mike Holland
01-02-2003 12:13 AM


Hello Mike H:
As a teenager, for many years, I tried to believe that there was a basic TRUTH underlying all the religions. But eventually I gave up, and now I am an atheist.
Having searched all my life for understanding and enlightenment now in the deepest darkest recesses of my heart I believe I am an atheist. However, I challange you to find the definitive argument that absolutely refutes the possibility that there may actually be a God or a "supreme other". For this reason I have to publicly and honestly say that I am an agnostic.
Blaise Pascal's wager disgusts me and it used to be my biggest fear that I would recant on my deathbed. I no longer fear that now: the liberating effects of non-belief have allowed me to freely embrace a moral life, and I am not afraid to be judged, if that should be what awaits us.
Work for peace and common sense.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by Mike Holland, posted 01-02-2003 12:13 AM Mike Holland has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 8 by PaulK, posted 03-10-2003 2:34 AM Justaman has replied
 Message 10 by Mike Holland, posted 03-10-2003 4:11 AM Justaman has replied
 Message 24 by John, posted 04-04-2003 10:02 AM Justaman has not replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17838
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 8 of 34 (34017)
03-10-2003 2:34 AM
Reply to: Message 7 by Justaman
03-10-2003 1:46 AM


Can you explain why you would need absolute proof ? Do oyu apply this thinking to any other aspects of the universe ?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:46 AM Justaman has replied

Replies to this message:
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 Message 12 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:25 PM PaulK has not replied

  
funkmasterfreaky
Inactive Member


Message 9 of 34 (34021)
03-10-2003 3:16 AM
Reply to: Message 8 by PaulK
03-10-2003 2:34 AM


It would seem to me that it requires absolute proof to believe in God for most of you around here. Why is it so illogical to require absolute proof to not believe?
------------------
Saved by an incredible Grace.

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Mike Holland
Member (Idle past 560 days)
Posts: 179
From: Sydney, NSW,Auistralia
Joined: 08-30-2002


Message 10 of 34 (34023)
03-10-2003 4:11 AM
Reply to: Message 7 by Justaman
03-10-2003 1:46 AM


Depends how you define agnostic/atheist.
I do not claim that there is no god, because I don't know of any definition of god which can be tested.
An agnostic says he doesn't know. But my reply is 'doesn't know what?'. If he says 'doesn't know if there is a god', I reply 'What is that thing spelled G O D that you are referring to?'.
In other words, I do not believe in god because the word has no referent. I cannot make sense of it. Every definition I have heard just leads to a series of contradictions. The statement 'God does not exist' does not mean any more to me than 'God does exist' or 'I don't know whether god exists'.
So what do you want to call me? Atheist, agnostic, ignorant, perverse?
Mike

This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:46 AM Justaman has replied

Replies to this message:
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 Message 13 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:53 PM Mike Holland has replied

  
compmage
Member (Idle past 5230 days)
Posts: 601
From: South Africa
Joined: 08-04-2005


Message 11 of 34 (34027)
03-10-2003 5:05 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by Mike Holland
03-10-2003 4:11 AM


Mike Holland writes:
quote:
So what do you want to call me? Atheist, agnostic, ignorant, perverse?
How about non-cognisant?
------------------
He hoped and prayed that there wasn't an afterlife. Then he realized there was a contradiction involved here and merely hoped that there wasn't an afterlife.
- Douglas Adams, The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy

This message is a reply to:
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Justaman
Inactive Member


Message 12 of 34 (34055)
03-10-2003 1:25 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by PaulK
03-10-2003 2:34 AM


Can you explain why you would need absolute proof ? Do oyu apply this thinking to any other aspects of the universe ?
I don't need absolute proof. I'm perfectly capable of looking into the abyss without crapping in my pants. In a public forum the statement "I'm an atheist" is as charged as the statement "God will destroy all non-believers." And being a public forum I don't want to close off the avenues of dialogue between myself and those with whom I disagree, so stating I am an agnostic should signal that I am at least willing to consider your viewpoint. This is not meant to imply that I think that all ideas have equal merit. Of course they don't.
Along these same lines, I've excerpted a few paragraphs fom a short essay by Ralph Estling that appeared in the Jan/Feb issue of Skeptical Inquirer, entitled SHATTERING THE CRYSTAL SPHERE:
"Quite often, in order to come to a working arrangement with mysteries, scientists create vast metaphors and vibrant analogies and call these wave functions or multiple worlds or force fields-quantum fields, electromagnetic fields, magnetic fields, gravitational fields, axion fields, Higgs fields, and so forth, to populate their empty ignorance and give to airy nothing a local habitation and a name. But if they’re good physicists, honest ones, they know that all this naming of parts is just a veneer, a finish, to be painted over the real, underlying, and so far, unfathomable mystery beneath. (I have a vision at this point of Quantum Fields staggering back and, hand to brow, muttering Godfrey Daniel, I’ve been hornswoggled!)
Well, we can have mystery, unknowingness, and still not need gods. But we’re greedy for Certainty and will stuff ourselves full of it, even when we know in our hearts it is a lie. Of course, being gentlemen and ladies, we don’t call it a lie, we call it a mystery, a myth, a story, religion, poetry, a dream. But it is a lie, whatever we call it, and how furious we become when someone brings this to our attention and shatters the crystal sphere we have so carefully and with such meticulousness constructed around us, so that now the crystal is smashed to pieces, reality pours in and engulfs us.
Oh, I can see why we must have gods. But it’s a shame. For reality is marvelous beyond all the gods man has ever created or will create. The trouble is, of course, reality owes nothing to us."
Hope you don't mind the length of this reply.

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Justaman
Inactive Member


Message 13 of 34 (34056)
03-10-2003 1:53 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by Mike Holland
03-10-2003 4:11 AM


Mike H:
you write-
Depends how you define agnostic/atheist.
Let's stick to the dictionary definition: atheist n(1571): one who denies the existence of God. Words do have accepted meanings, and if not, let's just call the whole thing off. Similarly for agnostic: ... broadly- one who is not committed to believing in either the existence or the nonexistence of God or a god.
you write-
So what do you want to call me? Atheist, agnostic, ignorant, perverse?
If I should meet you in the street, maybe I could call you "friend" and we'd go to the nearest watering hole and have a beer or three. I capitalize God out of respect to the believers; I've seen too many of these threads degenerate because of disrespect and antagonism. See also my reply to PaulK.
[This message has been edited by Justaman, 03-10-2003]

This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by Mike Holland, posted 03-10-2003 4:11 AM Mike Holland has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 15 by Mike Holland, posted 03-10-2003 7:48 PM Justaman has replied

  
Gzus
Inactive Member


Message 14 of 34 (34066)
03-10-2003 4:11 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by funkmasterfreaky
03-10-2003 3:16 AM


quote:
Originally posted by funkmasterfreaky:
It would seem to me that it requires absolute proof to believe in God for most of you around here. Why is it so illogical to require absolute proof to not believe?

Sure, fine, for harmless and happy belief systems, most people don’t really care whether or not they have proof, they just believe for their own fulfilment and happiness [and that’s great! ]. But in the case of religions that include a concept of damnation, absolute proof is required as the belief has many nasty implications that need to be justified beyond any doubt whatsoever. You’re a fool to believe in hell and eternal suffering without absolute proof in other words, and even more of a fool when you start using it to make other, more vulnerable people afraid.

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 Message 9 by funkmasterfreaky, posted 03-10-2003 3:16 AM funkmasterfreaky has not replied

  
Mike Holland
Member (Idle past 560 days)
Posts: 179
From: Sydney, NSW,Auistralia
Joined: 08-30-2002


Message 15 of 34 (34082)
03-10-2003 7:48 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by Justaman
03-10-2003 1:53 PM


Hi friend,
The dictionary definitions don't help me. I am not denying the existence of God, but neither am I saying I don't know. I am denying holding any belief about God. I normally call myself an atheist simply because I don't believe in God.
But there are many definitions of God that I do deny, and refuse to believe in, because they are too ridiculous or contradictory. Most Christian concept of God fall into this category.
There, I have used a capital 'G' to avoid insulting the beliefs of others (Who, for instance?). I normally use a small 'g' for god, because I regard god as a 'something' which needs to be explained, not a Something which is above all other things.
For example, What is god, where did he (she, it) come from? Is there only one? Did it create the universe on it's own, or with help from other gods? Why? Is god a being, or pure existence (the godhead of mystics), whatever that means. You see my problem with this concept? And that is without touching on Christian theology!
Mike.
[This message has been edited by Mike Holland, 03-10-2003]

This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by Justaman, posted 03-10-2003 1:53 PM Justaman has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 16 by Justaman, posted 03-11-2003 12:19 AM Mike Holland has replied
 Message 17 by Gzus, posted 03-11-2003 4:53 PM Mike Holland has replied
 Message 21 by William E. Harris, posted 03-13-2003 12:55 AM Mike Holland has not replied

  
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