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Thread: Religion according to a squirrel

  1. #1 Religion according to a squirrel 
    Nut Hunter.. NMSquirrel's Avatar
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    these are just my opinions.
    based on my own observations.

    first a little backstory:
    I have ADHD..i did not know this until i was 30..
    Mom had a tough time dealling with a hyperactive child with a short attention span..she was not equiped (emotionaly,physically,mentaly or spiritually) to handle an ADHD child. this resulted in too many incidents of 'What is wrong with you','your worthless' and other stereotype physcological seeds..
    At 12 i moved in with my dad, he and my mom had been seperated since i was born,he had visitation but averaged about once a year.
    my dad treated me like royalty, he had missed his kids (me and my sister), and wanted to make up for the lost time..I was in heaven..for a time..keep in mind that adhd was not a well known condition when i was growing up,so there were no resources or ppl to teach others how to handle an adhd child..he tried to get me focused and he helped a bit, his favorite line was "THINK!"..

    so between my moms "What is wrong with you?" and my dads "THINK!". guess what i started to think about....

    At 18 i joined the carnival,i worked for the carnival for three years (two differant companies), i grew up alot there..I began to learn "Its not how bad you mess up,but how well you fix it." (some lessons were harder than others..), and its associate motto "Its not how bad you are screwed up, but how well you hide it..", i learned how to think in the carnival..(not what to think,but how)

    fast forward to when my daughter was born..
    knew i didnt have all the skills to raise a little girl..knew there was something wrong with me(didnt know what till 30), knew i needed help..
    enter religion..
    of all the bad things said about religion, there has been one thing that gets left out..the ppl..there is a resource there with a group of ppl in diffferant stages of life to be able to get the skills and help to raise my daughter the way i wanted to..(dam it..didnt want her to develop a 'worthless' issue..happened anyway..i blame my mom..we tend to default to how we were raised..)

    when i was with my Mom, she had attended church at times and had used the church as a babysitting service, they were catholic churches..high in ritual,low in consistancy..(no we didnt go enough for me to get raped by a priest..)
    so i was a little reluctant to go back to church..a neighbor was persistent enough and nice enough (he had two kids around the same age as my daughter) that i went..it was a non-denomination church and they taught history of the bible..learned of the cannonization of the bible, was allowed to form my own opinions and to discuss them,was never told i was 'wrong'...

    Been to several other churches since then, always looked for the ones that studied the bible with a historical perspective, ones that i did not feel 'worthless' in..
    began to learn how much i make myself feel 'worthless'..studied physcology for a time (by which i mean i read a few books, and attempted to attend a class.)
    did earn an associate degree in Electronics, (so somewhere along the way, i learned how to learn.(I think the carnival taught me more than i realize).)

    My daughter is grown up now and she has her own daughter, she is 6 and today is Christmas, she made out this year..she always does..
    my daughter has her own share of problems, growing up i had to keep her away from books about illnesses..she read it..she got it...
    but apperantly i did something right..despite her problems,she is a very well adjusted adult,she has lots of friends and an ok job in the profession she has expressed an interest in..(phsycology)(she is a receptionist)..
    But that really doesn't have anything to do with the OP Title..

    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'

    some think to achieve a life of not feeling 'worthless' all they need to do is what the pastor tells them to do (Do as your told), this makes the pastor happy and sets up a codependat feedback circle that corrupts the initial intent of the message and sets up a false anti-worthless state of mind..but i digress..that is another topic..(and the seed of most of my rants against religion)

    others cannot just turn off their own personal responsibility switch so easily..they understand that they are responsible for their own actions and cannot 'blame' God, (Think for yourself)..these are the types of churches i have been to..ones where you are allowed to have your own opinions..to make your own choices..

    my current state of not attending church has nothing to do with my belief in God,

    i believe God has been there throughout my life, putting ppl in my path to help me understand who/what I am, helping me find answers to the questions i have had..not always giving the answers to me,even giving me wrong answers, but both have helped teach me how to think for myself and to question everything, and i have found some cool and awsome insights throughout the course of my life..(of course remember the adhd thing..it screws up my recall of such things..(often miscommunicate what i am thinking.))

    My current state of not attending church has to do with the area..(the ppl around here, tend to be selfish)
    I believe in God because he has been there for me.
    Religion has not always been there for me.


    and the atheist (or more precisely the Anti-Theist) wonder why they have a tough time convincing the theists they are wrong..


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    Interesting story. Fortunately for you were not a Calvinist. I am in disagreement with any philosophy or ideology which a doctrine which labels people as worthless, born sinful, or totally depraved. Many of these doctrines go on to claim that following their dogma and rituals is the only valid path to "cleanse" yourself of this worthlessness, sinfulness, or depravity. Perhaps this why many are anti-theistic.

    I as well was raised Catholic and attended Catholic primary and secondary school. I do appreciate the education I received and my parents enjoyed the daycare service they provided. The cost of watching my brother and me, 10% of their combined gross income, was fair exchange for my parents.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    Interesting story. Fortunately for you were not a Calvinist. I am in disagreement with any philosophy or ideology which a doctrine which labels people as worthless, born sinful, or totally depraved. Many of these doctrines go on to claim that following their dogma and rituals is the only valid path to "cleanse" yourself of this worthlessness, sinfulness, or depravity. Perhaps this why many are anti-theistic.
    but its a distraction from what God is trying to show you what you need to work on, one of my most fundamental questions is "if God told me to do something and Man tells you to do something else,who are you supposed to listen to?"
    Religion tends to try and define what God will and won't do, anyone who devotes any time at all to studying the bible will find that God can and does whatever the hell he wants to...
    Religion Says it like 'Do this,Get that'.. God says 'listen to me, dont worry about what you will get,'..
    Religon says "if you don't do it as we say then hell and damnation await you..God says "Told ya so!"..

    I have often wondered..why Father,Son AND Holy spirit.why three?, why not 2 or 4? (root of Mental,emotional,physical,spiritual)
    Father is the Head..the disciplinarian, old testament, strict parental figure..
    Son is the heart..the wise man, new testament, brotherly
    i always tried to put the third, Holy spirit in this context,but it doesn't quit work..
    its like there should be another testament..
    maybe there is..maybe it is unwritten..maybe it cannot be written..
    the Holy Spirit..Ghostly, undead, something that cannot be proven,(something that shouldn't be proven?)
    Faith and belief are critical in matters of God..you can't teach faith by a formula, each person needs to find it on their own,
    Each person needs to be different for God to work well, not all the same as religion would have you believe..


    I as well was raised Catholic and attended Catholic primary and secondary school. I do appreciate the education I received and my parents enjoyed the daycare service they provided. The cost of watching my brother and me, 10% of their combined gross income, was fair exchange for my parents.
    sorry..
    I tend to pick on the catholic faith alot..i am sure there are exeptions to the rule..but not as rule..
    most all of the ppl that i have met that have been 'turned off' God are ex-Catholics, this tells me that the catholics are doing something seriously wrong..
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    So are saying you've had a personal interaction/revelation? If so, what was it like? I'm not sure in what context you are using the word "Religion" in your post. please define it. Do you define it as combination of doctrines and rituals which humans craft for behavior? If not, how are you able to discern Religion from rituals/mitzvahs of the Bible (e.g. Deuteronomy and Leviticus).

    I've found many people 'turned off' by a variety of faiths for a variety of reasons. Perhaps that tells us that they are all doing something seriously wrong.

    I've never understood why people who claim that there are god/gods which have vastly superior power and knowledge to humans, demand that those with less power or knowledge have the burden of locating these agents and its message. Whenever I've asked this question back in primary school the best explanation amounted to the Fallacy of Emotional Appeal.

    1) Person A wants person B to believe in God for reason X
    2) Person B asks person A why God is not obvious
    3) Person A cannot provide an empirical explanation
    4) Person A induces person B to believe that faith is good (there's a reward) or lack of faith is bad (there's a hot fire waiting for you).
    The explanation haven't improved with time.

    As to how you chose to behave, that is entirely up to you. If you make a mistake, acknowledge it and modify your behavior.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    So are saying you've had a personal interaction/revelation? If so, what was it like? I'm not sure in what context you are using the word "Religion" in your post. please define it. Do you define it as combination of doctrines and rituals which humans craft for behavior? If not, how are you able to discern Religion from rituals/mitzvahs of the Bible (e.g. Deuteronomy and Leviticus).
    I tend to find God in coincidences, i can be struggling with a certain issue and without prompting i would overhear someone else talking about it, or a song would come on the radio addressing my exact problem,or the tv would have a show adressing the issue.. or the pastor would have a message on the exact situation..etc..etc..

    Religion: a group of ppl who believe in God,who try to justify their own beliefs by recruiting and convincing others to believe as they do, doctrines and rituals only serve to convince others they are the 'right' religion..
    now i am not really arguing against ritual,although i think ritual is a distraction from God, i do think that there are some ppl who need ritual to get their focus back on God..but in this context ritual is a tool not a law.
    by creating ritual and doctrine they try to make everyone believe and be the same way..In my opinion, God cannot work with a bunch of clones..he need diversity in order to work.
    <" I'm sorry God, I cannot do what you ask,my religion prohibits that.">


    I've found many people 'turned off' by a variety of faiths for a variety of reasons. Perhaps that tells us that they are all doing something seriously wrong.
    yea..justification by recruitment.(if i can convince others there is a God then that justifies my own belief in God)

    I've never understood why people who claim that there are god/gods which have vastly superior power and knowledge to humans, demand that those with less power or knowledge have the burden of locating these agents and its message. Whenever I've asked this question back in primary school the best explanation amounted to the Fallacy of Emotional Appeal.

    1) Person A wants person B to believe in God for reason X
    2) Person B asks person A why God is not obvious
    3) Person A cannot provide an empirical explanation
    4) Person A induces person B to believe that faith is good (there's a reward) or lack of faith is bad (there's a hot fire waiting for you).
    The explanation haven't improved with time.
    3) person A doesnt know the difference between subjective and objective..
    4) delete the reward/punishment spin on it, if God doesn't want to make himself empiracly known, then how can he dish out rewards and punishments?..
    my take is he is there, giving us advise,the reward/punishment is not from God but our own actions from either listening or not..as the parent says 'don't touch the hot stove' if the child chooses to touch the hot stove it is not the parents fault he got burned, the parent did not create the punishment, the child did not get hurt by the parent but by the stove..it is the same with ppl who 'blame' God..

    As to how you chose to behave, that is entirely up to you. If you make a mistake, acknowledge it and modify your behavior.
    which is my point..
    we are responsible for our own actions.If we choose not to listen to God, then it is not Gods fault we get hurt. this is not a punishment but a consequence.
    he made us with the ability to choose. this i believe to my core. genesis is there just to show us that we have the ability to choose, not as a threat or a punishment story.
    the apple, the tree..is just put there to let us know that we 'can' disobey God, that we have the ability to choose to disobey.
    God is not going to hate us or punish us because we choose not to listen..he will be there always telling us if we touch the stove we will get burned..if we get burned, it is not God 'punishing' us..it is a consequence of us not listening. God will just say 'Told ya so'..
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  7. #6  
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    I tend to find God in coincidences,
    So no direct personal contact? How do you know it isn't just a coincidence? What happens in those times when there isn't a coincidence, is god just ignoring you?

    my take is he is there, giving us advise,the reward/punishment is not from God...
    I had assumed you were referring to the Christian God which defines Heaven/Hell scenario. Does the god you worship not have a realm where people go after death which there is a punishment or reward based on behavior?

    he will be there always telling us if we touch the stove we will get burned..if we get burned...
    Based on what you've said earlier, he really doesn't say anything but uses related/unrelated events for you to recognize a coincidence which may relate to some concern you are having. It doesn't seem to be an efficient manner to deliver a message. Wouldn't it be simpler to personally deliver a clear coherent message to those wanting to hear one? Perhaps this is a reason why
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    to answer you post Mojo requires a seperate topic..
    (not a definative answer,but an answer none the less)

    the readers digest version is;
    Because we need to be able to choose for ourselves.
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    send me a pm, and we can then close the thread.
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  10. #9 Adam and Eve 
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    why close the thread..i have more thoughts, opinions and disclaimers..

    In no way do i post this to 'convert' anyone,
    i only offer it as an alternate way of thinking about certain things..

    Adam and Eve
    a metaphor.
    what makes us different from angels? (as per RCC referances)
    angels have no choice but to obey God..
    he created us with the ability to choose.
    How would the creator convince the newly created that they can disobey him?
    if i was the newly created how would i treat God? I have everything i could ever want in the garden, sure god i love it here,whatever you say goes..don't eat from that tree? sure..no problem...

    if it were left there, how would we know that we have the ability to disobey God?
    god had to set it up so we would have to choose to disobey..
    hence the snake..

    so i think..if i were left in the garden knowing i could disobey God how would that be?..

    being a parent myself i can see the rebellion in my daughters (and now my granddaughters heart), they choose to act not because it is right or wrong but because i said to do it 'this' way, so they will do it ANY way BUT 'this' way..grrrr...(i think they call it obstinate)..anyway..

    we would not be making our choices based on anything but what god said.
    (this premise applies to why i think God should not be made empirical)

    We needed to be out of the garden..
    we needed to learn for ourselves what choices there are..
    being kicked out was a reward not a punishment..

    I think those that believe it as a punishment, are the same ones who do not want to take responsibility for their own actions, they want to be back in the garden of eden with God telling them what to do absolving them from any responsibilities..

    so does that answer your question MrMojo?


    <TBC>
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    Not really. I was more interested in your epistemology, not your metaphysics. I know you believe, was more interested in how do you know (reasoning or evidence).

    Since this a science forum, the moderators would like posts which have some scientific value. Posts about beliefs and non-beliefs void of reasoning or scientific merit are discouraged.
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    NMSquirrel, we would love to ask you a few questions about your belief and why you believe, if you'll have us. We can do that in this thread, otherwise it will start to get a preaching flavour to it, even though it isn't intended.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    Not really. I was more interested in your epistemology, not your metaphysics. I know you believe, was more interested in how do you know (reasoning or evidence).

    Since this a science forum, the moderators would like posts which have some scientific value. Posts about beliefs and non-beliefs void of reasoning or scientific merit are discouraged.
    there is reasoning in my thoughts..
    there is just as much evidence for my <insert proper term here> as there is for all the others...
    the Merit is what you make of it..
    part of science is to explore..

    how does that line go?
    If there is no evidence to the contrary,then a premise is considered valid?(although still unproven,so 'valid' must be the wrong word)

    like i said..im not looking to convert anyone..
    one of the basic foundations of what i believe is to 'test all things'..(you would not have liked me as a teenager)..
    this includes what i believe and why i choose to believe it..
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    Okay. Since you wanted to explore this world view:

    Adam and Eve
    a metaphor.
    what makes us different from angels? (as per RCC referances)
    angels have no choice but to obey God..
    he created us with the ability to choose.
    How would the creator convince the newly created that they can disobey him?
    if i was the newly created how would i treat God? I have everything i could ever want in the garden, sure god i love it here,whatever you say goes..don't eat from that tree? sure..no problem...
    As to whether or not angels exist, let's narrow the context to the Bible. The Bible displays "fallen angels" in a variety of accounts. So it seems that are many angels who chose to disobey.

    I have several problems with this thought process. I do agree that the Adam and Eve story is a metaphor or allegory, no issues there.
    According to the Adam and Eve account, god didn't want people to chose. They were given a command for which they didn't understand the alternatives completely. To make a choice, a individual must have knowledge of at least 2 alternatives. Like many stories of the Bible, the meaning of the Adam and Eve story is muddled. Adam and Eve in the story had no knowledge, and were told under pain-of-death (whatever death was) that acquiring such knowledge was forbidden. A talking serpent/snake gives persuasive dietary advice. They were sentenced to death for acquiring forbidden knowledge which the gods had. An interpretation is that the gods wanted these humans to stay ignorantly obedient and the serpent enlightened them. For this act the serpent is punished, and the couple is punished. Yet the gods who could have designed less curious humans, not created a serpent or trees filled with knowledgeable fruit go unpunished. This isn't about choice but Divine Command, do as god says or else.

    If we assume they knew what death was, it would be irrelevant. Threatening someone with death or an alternative isn't a sound decision process.

    As to how an individual would respond to being in an imagined paradise, I couldn't answer. I can only assume it would vary upon the personality of said individual. In the story Adam became bored and lonely even though he had all the fruit he could eat, animals to play with, and conversations with god. It is assume that they would have lived eternally, but there is a mention of a "Tree of life" later on. The gods were fearful of the pair eating from that tree as well, thus their eviction from Eden.

    I recalled when I first read this story in 4th grade my immediate question to Sister Jean was, "So why was there a tree of knowledge there if god didn't want people eating from it?" The bigger question about this story is why would a god/gods create a universe which demands so much maintenance or intervention? You don't want newly created animals to eat from a certain trees, then don't make the trees or place the cherubim with a flaming sword guarding both trees at the start.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    Okay. Since you wanted to explore this world view:

    As to whether or not angels exist, let's narrow the context to the Bible. The Bible displays "fallen angels" in a variety of accounts. So it seems that are many angels who chose to disobey.
    cool..you understand to entertain a thought doesnt mean you accept it..
    yes we are not discussing existence issues.
    just how this fits current religious texts and studies..
    i did not study fallen angels, so i can't answer that..

    I have several problems with this thought process. I do agree that the Adam and Eve story is a metaphor or allegory, no issues there.
    According to the Adam and Eve account, god didn't want people to chose. They were given a command for which they didn't understand the alternatives completely. To make a choice, a individual must have knowledge of at least 2 alternatives. Like many stories of the Bible, the meaning of the Adam and Eve story is muddled. Adam and Eve in the story had no knowledge, and were told under pain-of-death (whatever death was) that acquiring such knowledge was forbidden. A talking serpent/snake gives persuasive dietary advice. They were sentenced to death for acquiring forbidden knowledge which the gods had. An interpretation is that the gods wanted these humans to stay ignorantly obedient and the serpent enlightened them. For this act the serpent is punished, and the couple is punished. Yet the gods who could have designed less curious humans, not created a serpent or trees filled with knowledgeable fruit go unpunished. This isn't about choice but Divine Command, do as god says or else.
    the first thing i see is an assumption that God didn't want them to choose..sure he said there would be consequences..again i ask,If God created us with the ability to choose then how would he make us understand that we can choose?
    ( i dont buy the 'struggle' free argument as a valid arguement..IE If God wanted to teach us X, then he could do it without it hurting)
    (the 'hurt' is an individual assesment, as what hurts for one doesnt always hurt for the other..)

    and i think the RCC when it cannonized the bible made it seems like it was a 'obey or die' choice..they wanted control over the populace,so they flavored the bible with commands like 'obey or die' that would give their leaders the power to control ppl..
    there is nothing in the cannonization process that makes the bible divine and without error..
    the simple fact that they had to choose what books to put in the bible is evidence that errors can creep into it..

    can you agree that there was a strong predilection(possibility) for those in charge of the cannonization of the bible to make it line up with current mores and laws?
    so i dont see the process allowing for ppl to make their own choices..they wanted control..

    200 years of 'do as your told' is hard to defeat..but IMO there is plenty of evidence that this is not how it is supposed to be..
    starting with human nature, add accidental misinterpretation and intentional misinterpretation of the bible, add a persons desire to be the 'expert' in their field, and a persons lack of ability to say 'i dont know', and add several verses in the bible that contridicts the 'do as your told' teaching, and most important..look at which advice/teachings from the bible works and which does not, (i believe the 'think for yourself' ones work better)




    If we assume they knew what death was, it would be irrelevant. Threatening someone with death or an alternative isn't a sound decision process.
    i agree

    As to how an individual would respond to being in an imagined paradise, I couldn't answer. I can only assume it would vary upon the personality of said individual.
    how would you?

    In the story Adam became bored and lonely even though he had all the fruit he could eat, animals to play with, and conversations with god. It is assume that they would have lived eternally, but there is a mention of a "Tree of life" later on. The gods were fearful of the pair eating from that tree as well, thus their eviction from Eden.
    God was fearfull?
    everything i have learned about God..he does not fear..
    this is us humans assigning our own emotional state to God..

    I recalled when I first read this story in 4th grade my immediate question to Sister Jean was, "So why was there a tree of knowledge there if god didn't want people eating from it?" The bigger question about this story is why would a god/gods create a universe which demands so much maintenance or intervention? You don't want newly created animals to eat from a certain trees, then don't make the trees or place the cherubim with a flaming sword guarding both trees at the start.
    exactly.
    i dont see the point of putting it there unless he had a purpose for it..
    using it as a tool to teach us that we can make our own descisions,now that makes more sense to me..
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    I don't think the RCC had that much influence in the original Jewish Torah. To my understanding it is the Ugaritic Texts which give insight to the religious beliefs of the many Canaanite tribes. The Septuagint may have had some errors, but I am not aware of the RCC having a direct hand modifying the older stories of the Bible. There were modification made in language in later versions of the Bible (The King James Version), but that version wasn't authorized by the RCC. It wasn't until the Second Vatican Council where the RCC approved Mass and the Canon in modern common languages.

    can you agree that there was a strong predilection(possibility) for those in charge of the cannonization of the bible to make it line up with current mores and laws?
    so i dont see the process allowing for ppl to make their own choices..they wanted control..
    I can't agree with that. There were many dissenting opinions in many of the early councils. It took decades for them to come to a consensus, and it was short lived (e.g. Catholic Orthodox split and Protestants). Many sects were deemed heretical after a while. Some earlier versions of the Bible had some of the stories removed/added (e.g. Revelation of John, Apocrypha, Shepard of Hermas...etc).

    As to how would I respond to live in paradise, I'd probably become bored after a while.

    God was fearfull?
    I can only see one reason to place an armed sentry over something of value. The owner of the will not be present at all times itself and is fearful of unauthorized access. I'm just reading the story at face value and weighing other alternatives.

    i don't see the point of putting it there unless he had a purpose for it..
    using it as a tool to teach us that we can make our own decisions,now that makes more sense to me..
    How does that make sense to you? You agreed with me that given a choice between death and alternative X isn't a sound decision process. It reminds me of Mafia boss presenting a wonderful offer, you can't refuse. It only teaches a "Do it or Die"mentality. It is in essence tyranny.

    You do have a point about "humans assigning our own emotional state to god/s. I've observed a long time ago, that gods always seems to reflect distinct human emotional traits of the worshipers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    i don't see the point of putting it there unless he had a purpose for it..
    using it as a tool to teach us that we can make our own decisions,now that makes more sense to me..
    How does that make sense to you? You agreed with me that given a choice between death and alternative X isn't a sound decision process. It reminds me of Mafia boss presenting a wonderful offer, you can't refuse. It only teaches a "Do it or Die"mentality. It is in essence tyranny.
    If it was just God saying 'don't touch' then i dont think he would have..he really had no incentive...it was the snake that introduced the choice to disobey(surely you will not die)...
    so when god spoke it was 'eat' equals 'death'
    when the snake spoke it was 'eat' equals 'be like god', there was the decision..does 'eat' equal 'death' or 'be like god'?
    he created the snake to do exactly what he wanted it to do..

    but i dont think that answers your question..

    Boss:Heres what you gonna do bub..you see that tree over there? dont touch. kapish? you touch you die!..get it?
    Lackey: <whispers> you wont die..you will know what the boss knows..
    Adam: Hmmm...

    sorry..you started it..

    4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”



    (and if you have never experienced excitement, how would you know boredom?)



    You do have a point about "humans assigning our own emotional state to god/s. I've observed a long time ago, that gods always seems to reflect distinct human emotional traits of the worshipers.
    seeds of 'DON'T BLAME GOD!'...rant...
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    when i was with my Mom, she had attended church at times and had used the church as a babysitting service, they were catholic churches..high in ritual,low in consistancy..(no we didnt go enough for me to get raped by a priest..)
    so i was a little reluctant to go back to church..a neighbor was persistent enough and nice enough (he had two kids around the same age as my daughter) that i went..it was a non-denomination church and they taught history of the bible..learned of the cannonization of the bible, was allowed to form my own opinions and to discuss them,was never told i was 'wrong'...

    Been to several other churches since then, always looked for the ones that studied the bible with a historical perspective, ones that i did not feel 'worthless' in..
    began to learn how much i make myself feel 'worthless'
    Hi Squirrel, I am interested in your choice of Church also about what said about your Mother using it as a baby sitting service, the social cohension value that some churchs can provide within a community interests me. The idea of socially linking people together and whether this really does help or encourage people to believe in God or could it be all about the shared experience that brings people together in church. I remember from my own childhood of attending church (CofE) with my aunty and uncle when I was quite young but this never really left any sort of religious impression upon me, I just used to enjoy the trips out as I didn't get so many opportunities, I've never really been what you could call spiritual, never had that sense of someone up there looking out for me, everything good in my life has always been me working out what I wanted and figuring out how to do it or get it. I'm not really opposed to the idea of a belief in God it just never happened for me, I guess in many ways I'd have to give up some belief in my own control over my own destiny to really believe in God and again that loss of control is something that I don't think any church would be able to instill into me. So I just wonder if a great curiosity about God, or some significant event rather than just childhood church attendance is really the driving factor behind spirituality in later life.
    “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.”

    Bertrand Russell
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I guess in many ways I'd have to give up some belief in my own control over my own destiny to really believe in God and again that loss of control is something that I don't think any church would be able to instill into me.
    Why would you have to give up control?
    this is what i am speaking against(to?).
    why would god give us the ability to choose if he wont let us choose?
    we get our experience from our choices..
    god couldnt utilize us if we didnt have our own unique experiences..

    So I just wonder if a great curiosity about God, or some significant event rather than just childhood church attendance is really the driving factor behind spirituality in later life.
    so this would be a good segway(hard to spell check) into:

    Getting to know God..

    its alot simpler than ppl make it out to be..

    how would you get to know someone like Charley Chaplin or John Kenedy?

    you read about him..you study about who he is..you get others opinions of who he is..you saturate yourself with finding more and more things about him..soon you would have enough info as to make a decent guess as to who that person is(was)..

    it the same with God..
    with one exception...
    with God there is a personal element to him..this is different with each person and is subjective to the individual..(we find God where we find him..)

    to 'know' God is not to know what he will do..but to know who he is and be able to make a decent guess as to what he would do..
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    to 'know' God is not to know what he will do..but to know who he is and be able to make a decent guess as to what he would do..
    OK, I know the mysterious force that seems to be affecting my life is God so now I have to guess what that mysterious force will do next? You can't be serious. This kind of doublespeak has bamboozled billions. My guess is that it will keep on affecting your life as long as you believe it's there.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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    I think you missed some obvious points in your last post to me.

    1. The Serpent words were true.
    a. Eating the fruit did give them knowledge. Even the gods acknowledges that by the end of the story.
    b. They didn't die immediately. As the story continues, they lived a very long time. You may argue that they supposed to have lived eternally, but the presence of a Tree of Life with an armed guard counters that claim.

    2. The Mafia Boss analogy (your spin on mine) clearly isn't about choice. You have proved my point, it reflects the Boss is a liar and a tyrant. Adam wouldn't know what the Boss knows until he eats the fruit.
    The point you seem to be arguing for is in this story:
    a. Blindly follow someone's commands.
    b. Seeking knowledge and understanding of one's environment are valid causes for the Boss to punish you.

    3. Gods are a fabrication of the human mind. The writings describe gods as having the same range of emotions, limited understanding of the natural world, and desired to be worshiped/feared as the humans of the period in question.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    I think you missed some obvious points in your last post to me.

    1. The Serpent words were true.
    a. Eating the fruit did give them knowledge. Even the gods acknowledges that by the end of the story.
    b. They didn't die immediately. As the story continues, they lived a very long time. You may argue that they supposed to have lived eternally, but the presence of a Tree of Life with an armed guard counters that claim.
    i have heard stories of the longevity of the older characters in the bible..dunno if i believe it..


    2. The Mafia Boss analogy (your spin on mine) clearly isn't about choice. You have proved my point, it reflects the Boss is a liar and a tyrant. Adam wouldn't know what the Boss knows until he eats the fruit.
    The point you seem to be arguing for is in this story:
    a. Blindly follow someone's commands.
    ok..yes..adam would have blindly followed what God wanted (if there were no snake)

    b. Seeking knowledge and understanding of one's environment are valid causes for the Boss to punish you.
    1,it wasnt seeking knowledge that inticed him, god said as much when he told adam to not eat..
    2,you still dont see the difference between it being a punishment and a reward?

    3. Gods are a fabrication of the human mind. The writings describe gods as having the same range of emotions, limited understanding of the natural world, and desired to be worshiped/feared as the humans of the period in question.
    Limited understanding of the natural world? (God or the ppl?)

    <another question..If God created the natural world,why would he need supernatural to work within it?>
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i have heard stories of the longevity of the older characters in the bible..dunno if i believe it...
    I find it interesting that the claimed age of characters is where you express doubts about this particular story. Why is that?

    1,it wasnt seeking knowledge that inticed him, god said as much when he told adam to not eat..
    2,you still dont see the difference between it being a punishment and a reward?
    Well when it is presented in the context of "Don't eat or you'll die", the punishment part is hard to ignore. The story is presented to a reader who has an understanding of what death is, but the characters wouldn't know the meaning of dying or death. They would have no context to refer to; death was undefined to them.

    The serpent actually presents a choice to the couple, "Continue on your blissful ignorant life, or eat it and understand things as the gods do." The serpent gave them a choice where there was limited understanding of both options. Perhaps curiosity is a design flaw.

    Limited understanding of the natural world? (God or the ppl?)
    I assert that gods described in oral/written traditions are expressions of human thought trying to understand natural phenomenon in their environment. There are countless storm gods, sun gods, water/sea gods, sky gods, volcano gods, and underworld gods. When there has been exploration to where these gods supposedly dwell (e.g. underground, on the mountain high, above the clouds,...etc), there are no gods present. As different societies form some type of limited government, there's a pantheon of gods embroiled in similar political tactics.

    Missing in many of older recorded religions is knowledge of land/continents and their inhabitants beyond where the writers lived. There was a common understanding of the world being flat, and geocentrism described the cosmos. The moon isn't a light source. In the past 100 years humans have accomplish great leaps in knowledge and technology, yet there isn't a religion that records these feats prior to their discovery. As people become more sophisticated, so did their beliefs. Modern people describe their gods as omnipresent, omnibenevolent, omniscient, omnipotent, yet when you read the older writings these gods aren't everywhere, are filled with anger, have limited knowledge, and rely on people to spread the message.

    <another question..If God created the natural world,why would he need supernatural to work within it?>
    Why bother to create the natural world be my first response. Second is what is supernatural? Is it a person, a place, a thing, or a verb? I'm not clear on your usage of the term "supernatural" in this context. I hear the word often, but with different definitions. I'm only aware of the natural world, claims of any other type of existence is at best wishful thinking.
    Is god lonely or bored? Is god narcissistic and needs praise to feel good about itself? Is praise or worshiping a god a form of energy and god needs to consume it?

    Perhaps god didn't create anything, and humans created god in our own image.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    i have heard stories of the longevity of the older characters in the bible..dunno if i believe it...
    I find it interesting that the claimed age of characters is where you express doubts about this particular story. Why is that?
    1,not rying to establish any expertise for myself..
    2, humans are getting longer lived not shorter lived...
    3 cause i dont think of the bible as unerrring..


    1,it wasnt seeking knowledge that inticed him, god said as much when he told adam to not eat..
    2,you still dont see the difference between it being a punishment and a reward?
    Well when it is presented in the context of "Don't eat or you'll die", the punishment part is hard to ignore. The story is presented to a reader who has an understanding of what death is, but the characters wouldn't know the meaning of dying or death. They would have no context to refer to; death was undefined to them.

    The serpent actually presents a choice to the couple, "Continue on your blissful ignorant life, or eat it and understand things as the gods do." The serpent gave them a choice where there was limited understanding of both options. Perhaps curiosity is a design flaw.
    God said:
    “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

    the snake said:
    “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

    both have 'knowing good and evil'..so that incentive is not new from the snake..adam knew that before the snake said anything..
    the only thing the snake added was 'be like God'..which was the new incentive..

    but on further analizing the two statement are so close to each other,that it could be from the same source..
    they are almost identical..how many times in life do you get two identical warnings from two different source? (this doesnt account for standardization in our society)



    Limited understanding of the natural world? (God or the ppl?)
    I assert that gods described in oral/written traditions are expressions of human thought trying to understand natural phenomenon in their environment. There are countless storm gods, sun gods, water/sea gods, sky gods, volcano gods, and underworld gods. When there has been exploration to where these gods supposedly dwell (e.g. underground, on the mountain high, above the clouds,...etc), there are no gods present. As different societies form some type of limited government, there's a pantheon of gods embroiled in similar political tactics.

    Missing in many of older recorded religions is knowledge of land/continents and their inhabitants beyond where the writers lived. There was a common understanding of the world being flat, and geocentrism described the cosmos. The moon isn't a light source. In the past 100 years humans have accomplish great leaps in knowledge and technology, yet there isn't a religion that records these feats prior to their discovery. As people become more sophisticated, so did their beliefs. Modern people describe their gods as omnipresent, omnibenevolent, omniscient, omnipotent, yet when you read the older writings these gods aren't everywhere, are filled with anger, have limited knowledge, and rely on people to spread the message.
    i wont argue against that, cept to say lack of proof isnt proof of lack..

    <another question..If God created the natural world,why would he need supernatural to work within it?>
    Why bother to create the natural world be my first response. Second is what is supernatural? Is it a person, a place, a thing, or a verb? I'm not clear on your usage of the term "supernatural" in this context. I hear the word often, but with different definitions. I'm only aware of the natural world, claims of any other type of existence is at best wishful thinking.
    Is god lonely or bored? Is god narcissistic and needs praise to feel good about itself? Is praise or worshiping a god a form of energy and god needs to consume it?

    Perhaps god didn't create anything, and humans created god in our own image.
    as it is used by atheist..as a means other than natural processes..

    as far as your questions..If God is watching us from above..then he is not bored..(such an entertaining species..)
    and i have always wondered why he needed praise and worship..seems superfluous..
    (so i dont think it is a requirement..maybe just a tool to reshift focus, but not a requirement)
    ---

    i reinterate..
    i am not trying to 'convert' anyone.
    these are just another way of thinking about God..

    in its essence it says:
    Think for your self,Make your own choices,don't blame God for your struggles. take responsibility for your own actions.
    dont use God as an excuse ..

    And it also says:
    You are allowed to not believe in God.
    (God could utilize you whether you believe or not)
    (through you giving valued advice to others)

    <damn..had to redo this post three times..one of the cut and pastes kept crashing explorer..)
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    I understand your point of view about acts and consequences, I don't agree the Adam\Eve story applies. If anything I've come to appreciate the story as a polemic against serpent worshiping cults of the ancient world. Some of these older religions have similar stories of serpent protecting a tree of knowledge, tree of life, and sometimes a fertility symbol. These were depicted in a tree or a snake/s entwined around a staff of varying properties. The oldest known account of two snakes entwined around a rod is that of the Sumerian fertility god Ningizzida. There were many battles between tribes with different sets of god beliefs. It was common to conclude that the victorious were represented by more powerful gods. One of the many spoils of victory was to record the events in your favor, thus the newer dominate faith ridiculed the former in texts.

    The modern day symbol of a snakes entwined on a staff is commonly seen in the medical profession (Asclepius) and in trades that deal with flight or travel (Caduceus).

    i wont argue against that, cept to say lack of proof isnt proof of lack..
    I will agree up to a point. There are certain things which by their own definition would have to leave evidence (e.g. The detonation of nuclear suitcase bomb would leave traces of radiation). The god worshiped by Jews, Christians, and Muslims plays a major active role in the universe and human life. He should have been detected by now. This god appears too anthropogenic to be plausible (e.g He wrestles with Jacob, Ezekiel sees his loins). Additionally, there is overwhelming evidence that the universe can operate without gods; there is no observation which exemplify that gods are necessary. If there is a "real" god out there, then the best people to detect such a being would be agnostics and atheists since they don't have a preconceived belief of what it is.

    I appreciate you not trying to convert anyone. The last question I have is: if the vast majority of gods beliefs have been abandoned, then why not abandon them all?
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    I understand your point of view about acts and consequences, I don't agree the Adam\Eve story applies. If anything I've come to appreciate the story as a polemic against serpent worshiping cults of the ancient world. Some of these older religions have similar stories of serpent protecting a tree of knowledge, tree of life, and sometimes a fertility symbol. These were depicted in a tree or a snake/s entwined around a staff of varying properties. The oldest known account of two snakes entwined around a rod is that of the Sumerian fertility god Ningizzida. There were many battles between tribes with different sets of god beliefs. It was common to conclude that the victorious were represented by more powerful gods. One of the many spoils of victory was to record the events in your favor, thus the newer dominate faith ridiculed the former in texts.
    i am aware the snake (for that matter,alot of stories in the bible) has pre-biblical history..it is my condition that i can't remember all the details..thank you for bringing historical references to our discussion...

    The god worshiped by Jews, Christians, and Muslims plays a major active role in the universe and human life. He should have been detected by now. This god appears too anthropogenic to be plausible (e.g He wrestles with Jacob, Ezekiel sees his loins). Additionally, there is overwhelming evidence that the universe can operate without gods; there is no observation which exemplify that gods are necessary.
    i think a distinction must be made here as far as the 'universe' can exist without a God,(again..why would god create a high maintenance system? just create it self sustaining..) and 'humanity' can't exist without God.

    you heard me say 'Don't blame God'
    but the opposite holds true also..you can use God as an excuse to do what is right/best.
    thats why humanity needs God..


    If there is a "real" god out there, then the best people to detect such a being would be agnostics and atheists since they don't have a preconceived belief of what it is.
    what reference is this statement from?
    by 'detect' do you mean a way for someone to prove to others that 'this' god exists? (see dependance on god,validation,control,no choice,not a good thing)

    i do not need to justify my beliefs like that..i believe what God wants for you is different than what God wants from me..what right do i have to tell you that God wants you to do X....if he wants you to do X then he will let you know.

    All i can do is share what i think,feel,know and believe..
    Its up to you to decide what to do with it..


    I appreciate you not trying to convert anyone. The last question I have is: if the vast majority of gods beliefs have been abandoned, then why not abandon them all?
    now if you would have said 'religion' i would have agree'd..
    but from a stricly scientific process aspect..Test ALL things..doesnt say test most..or test till you get the answer you want..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    now if you would have said 'religion' i would have agree'd..
    but from a stricly scientific process aspect..Test ALL things..doesnt say test most..or test till you get the answer you want..
    I find this confusing. I heartily agree to rigorously test all things as best possible. So how did you test that your god actually exits?
    If this is just a belief you prefer to hold, why not hold the belief in other gods (this assumes you don't, correct me if this is inaccurate)?

    The danger I find with beliefs (religious or social/political) is they can become an exercise in circular reasoning. Person believes agent X exist when there is insufficient evidence of its existence. Direct communication with agent X doesn't occur, or the person assumes there is communication but it is coded. Person seeks out a proxy to decipher the code. This proxy is typically another person who claims direct communication with agent X or has deciphered the code, or it is a set of documents. The person then abdicates hers/his own authority and bestows it on proxy and labels that proxy as holy (a divine message/messenger). The person now recognizes the holy person or holy book as hers/his authority and will now alter their reasoning/behavior to reflect this worldview. The person has justified an unsubstantiated belief with an person or book (written by other persons) for which their no evidence of a divine source. This is the problem with beliefs, they distort perception so that they affirm themselves. This is also why unchallenged beliefs tend to to be invisible to the one who holds them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrMojo1 View Post
    I find this confusing. I heartily agree to rigorously test all things as best possible. So how did you test that your god actually exits?
    If this is just a belief you prefer to hold, why not hold the belief in other gods (this assumes you don't, correct me if this is inaccurate)?
    test God?
    this is looking for empirical stuff..

    are you married?
    if so, if your spouse went on vacation, and while there talked to her friends and told them to pass on a message to you..how would you know that the message was really from your wife?

    you would know if it was from your wife because you know her so well that you would know if it was from your wife or not..
    and you would have some sort of trust for her friends not to decive you..
    you would have faith that they were telling the truth,and that the message was from your wife.
    you would also have faith in the message that this is actually what she said..(or reasonably close)

    recap:
    study about God..
    find all info availible about God..
    question everyone about God.
    then one day you find that you 'know' God.

    recap part 2:
    study about charley chaplin
    question everyone about charley chaplin
    then one day you find that you 'know' charley chaplin.

    it is not empirical evidence.
    it is not one size fits all.
    it is subjective and personal.
    each person finds God differently.

    never underestimate humanities ability to corrupt anything.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    Unfortunately, my experience with church has shown me that they are full of people who want to make those who do not follow their values feel worthless.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    Unfortunately, my experience with church has shown me that they are full of people who want to make those who do not follow their values feel worthless.
    there is a fine line...
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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    that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    i believe God has been there throughout my life, putting ppl in my path to help me understand who/what I am, helping me find answers to the questions i have had
    God has put myself and others in your path just so you could feel worthless. And so it's understood.....we were only trying to make you feel worthless, didn't say you were. I think that you should be grateful we succeeded, it wasn't easy. When God guides me into the path of others like you, I know He has selected me for a reason. You may have to figure things out but for me it's quite simple.... I'm more important. Without me, and others like me of course, you stay lost. Remember, you don't even know if you are worth it. I'm out there trying to do God's bidding just to get you in that church. Now I don't mind helping but despite everyone you have met in that church, the people who got in your path and made you feel worthless have done more for you than you can imagine. There is no question about that, without us where would you be? Yes I think you are indebted to us but don't ever think you have to pay us back. We just did what God intended, we're part of your rescue team whether you like it or not.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    test God?
    this is looking for empirical stuff..
    Exactly, this is consistent with the criteria you stated in post #25
    but from a stricly scientific process aspect..Test ALL things..doesnt say test most..or test till you get the answer you want..
    are you married?...
    1. Well first we must establish that my wife exists. She does this by manifesting herself in the natural world, and a sufficient amount of testing is performed to confirm this.

    2. She communicates a desire a long term relationship recognized by social/governmental standard with me. We agree upon a marriage and then perform a marriage ritual.

    3. After an extended period of observing and interacting with my wife, I would become familiar with her personality (e.g. speech, mannerism, desires, ...etc). Based on this historical data, I would test if I could predict a future event. If guessed correctly, then she would give me an approval confirmation. If I guess incorrectly, I'll receive negative re-enforcement.

    So based on this extend period of dialog and physically interacting with my wife, I would likely have a high degree of certainty of her writing style. Is this the same level of initial observation, interaction, and predictability of god that let you know a particular written message is from god?

    study about God..
    This goes back to my initial question, how do you acquire knowledge? What is it that you are examining? How do differentiate what you call god vs. all the claims of gods? The Charley Chaplin example is a false analogy, for we have film that documents his career as an actor. We don't have film that documents god doing god-like stuff (whatever properties your definition of god is). Additionally, we know a good deal of information regarding humans from observation, history of behavior, and limitations of their bodies. This isn't the same from the many definitions of gods.

    each person finds God differently
    This appears to be a matter of taste then. Is is possible that "finding god" is purely a activity of the brain since you haven't provided any empirical data about god?
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  33. #32  
    Life-Size Nanoputian Flick Montana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    Unfortunately, my experience with church has shown me that they are full of people who want to make those who do not follow their values feel worthless.
    there is a fine line...
    Between what?
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
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  34. #33  
    Nut Hunter.. NMSquirrel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    i believe God has been there throughout my life, putting ppl in my path to help me understand who/what I am, helping me find answers to the questions i have had
    God has put myself and others in your path just so you could feel worthless. And so it's understood.....we were only trying to make you feel worthless, didn't say you were. I think that you should be grateful we succeeded, it wasn't easy. When God guides me into the path of others like you, I know He has selected me for a reason. You may have to figure things out but for me it's quite simple.... I'm more important. Without me, and others like me of course, you stay lost. Remember, you don't even know if you are worth it. I'm out there trying to do God's bidding just to get you in that church. Now I don't mind helping but despite everyone you have met in that church, the people who got in your path and made you feel worthless have done more for you than you can imagine. There is no question about that, without us where would you be? Yes I think you are indebted to us but don't ever think you have to pay us back. We just did what God intended, we're part of your rescue team whether you like it or not.
    um..never said god put ppl in my path to make me feel worthless..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
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  35. #34  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    Unfortunately, my experience with church has shown me that they are full of people who want to make those who do not follow their values feel worthless.
    there is a fine line...
    Between what?
    justification and content.
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
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  36. #35  
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I guess in many ways I'd have to give up some belief in my own control over my own destiny to really believe in God and again that loss of control is something that I don't think any church would be able to instill into me.
    Why would you have to give up control?
    this is what i am speaking against(to?).
    why would god give us the ability to choose if he wont let us choose?
    we get our experience from our choices..
    god couldnt utilize us if we didnt have our own unique experiences..

    So I just wonder if a great curiosity about God, or some significant event rather than just childhood church attendance is really the driving factor behind spirituality in later life.
    so this would be a good segway(hard to spell check) into:

    Getting to know God..

    its alot simpler than ppl make it out to be..

    how would you get to know someone like Charley Chaplin or John Kenedy?

    you read about him..you study about who he is..you get others opinions of who he is..you saturate yourself with finding more and more things about him..soon you would have enough info as to make a decent guess as to who that person is(was)..

    it the same with God..
    with one exception...
    with God there is a personal element to him..this is different with each person and is subjective to the individual..(we find God where we find him..)

    to 'know' God is not to know what he will do..but to know who he is and be able to make a decent guess as to what he would do..

    I don't know, perhaps some people are more open to being religious or just have a greater need. For me I'm probarbly a bit to set in my ways now to become religious, sure I don't mind going to church for weddings and christenings etc... but attending on a regular basis and actually having to think to deeply about it is probarbly to involved for me. I don't see that I'm really missing out on anything as I'm happy as I am so it's not as if I have anything to be improved or any issues to be worked out, so the whole spiritual/religious thing is probarbly wasted on me.
    “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.”

    Bertrand Russell
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  37. #36  
    Life-Size Nanoputian Flick Montana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by NMSquirrel View Post
    So i have learned over time, that the church is filled with ppl, just like me,who just want a place to go to where no-one is trying to make them feel 'worthless'
    Unfortunately, my experience with church has shown me that they are full of people who want to make those who do not follow their values feel worthless.
    there is a fine line...
    Between what?
    justification and content.

    I'm still not sure I understand.

    You say you feel like everyone out there in the world makes you feel worthless and when you go to church the people there make you feel better.

    When I've attended church, I found the sermons to be fairly hateful and segregatory.

    We're both justified in what we've said and neither experience is more or less valid than another.

    Maybe it was the structure and grammar, but I'm not sure why certain things make you feel worthless and church makes you feel better. I had a hard time reading your first post.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
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  38. #37  
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    Flick..

    the first church i went to as an adult was because of a neighbor.

    George..he was deaf in both ears so always wore hearing aids..

    he would come to the mailbow everyday and pester me to go with him to his church..he wasn't rude about it..it was just a friendly invite.
    i finally relented and ended up there for a few years..

    then we moved..

    then had to find another church..

    took a few churches to find one i was comfortable in..

    the churches i have described have been few and far between..

    i have moved a few more times since then..
    The term 'Free' in Free thinking, does not imply control....
    Intelligence is being able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
    God is not inside the box.
    http://squirrels-nest.proboards.com/
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