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Old 28 Nov 2017, 11:59 PM   #681368 / #26
justme
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I would argue that Satan was the true good guy in the bible, but he lost the PR war. Maybe it's actually Satan you are feeling. After all, he was the one that encouraged us to actually think on our own, discover knowledge, and become enlightened.

Job was actually Satan testing god's morals (and god failed).....
I've said worst about Christianity before. I hold the power mongers at halt for the devastation they have caused the world in the name of Christ. I know that God is a myth to you and you have that right to keep him in that framework.

I have no intention to arguing the point with you because we are both adults and have made up our minds. I hope that we can remain on good terms on other threads.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 12:08 AM   #681369 / #27
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You demand of me that I produce proof of my feelings
There is nothing at all in my posts that can be construed as a demand to produce proof. You are of course free to post whatever you like. That's fine. Am I not free to write what I think of whatever it is you have posted? Not fine?
What you've done when you called my explanation imbecilic you placed me in a corner where you rejected out of hand my explanation in this matter. The only alternative would be to try and prove it and I know that since I couldn't describe effectively what I wanted to relate to you before that I could not after that.

What other course of action was available to be other than repeating myself.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 12:35 AM   #681370 / #28
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There's not room in the head for both Christian faith in God and accepting science, facts and reality. If you accept God your reality will start warping truth around it. It's not a good place to be. And while you're with God there is only one predictable outcome. There's absolutely a correlation between stuff like faith in God and uncritically accepting fake news or denying global warming.
That's absolute bollocks. There may be not enough room in some heads perhaps, but I know plenty of Christians who are great scientists. I don't know where you are from - maybe in your part of the world you have only been exposed to particularly rabid evangelical type Christians, but that is not all there is.

I am quite sure that justme isn't going to turn into one of those, so will not suddenly start denying scientific fact.

I confess a vested interest. I have been getting a lot more spiritual lately. For the last few years I have been going along to my wife's church on a Sunday. Initially, this was just to support her (actually to start with I was kind of dragged along), but more recently I admit I have been going for myself. In fact, she is away at the moment, visiting family, and I went without her. I don't see it in any way a contradiction with my scientific training. And pretty much everyone in the church has a more liberal and accepting view of gays and transgenders than I have - in fact, I have been challenged by this somewhat. While I would not go so far as accepting it as a literal truth, I am willing to accept there is a lot of figurative truth and awareness of the human condition in their beliefs.
I know a lot of scientists, really a lot, and I don't know any that profess christian beliefs. Of course, they may just not talk about it. That said, well over half have what we colloquially call 'spiritual outlooks'. Of those, many apply as deep a skepticism towards the philosophical implications of a physicalist view of science as they do towards the design of any experiment. I might go so far as to say that the default position among those that have a spiritual outlook is that all we have ruled out through science are ideas that humans have articulated over the millennia, one over infinity perhaps. And that the figurative truths of religion are sometimes the deepest truths we have as a species.

I personally am somewhat on the fence about that but am definitely not opposed to the idea. I definitely think that if you are asking god for emotional support and god delivers that, then that's a good thing and I really have no adequate vantage point from which to pass judgment. However, if god starts telling a person how other people should feel, that's a different ballgame and the defenses go up.

Justme, whatever works. God is a complicated word. You certainly don't need to accept anyone else's definitions and are probably lucky to have found your peace. I think maybe most people never do.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 01:39 AM   #681375 / #29
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He is an entity who can and does at his own discretion, takes steps to influence the world he made for those who have given him the respect and acknowledgement of being who he is.
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I am not dodging anything because the truth is I don't know.
Can't have it both ways, justme. You can claim knowledge about God, or you can admit ignorance- but if you start talking about what God wants, or is, you are contradicting your claim of ignorance.

If you want to use Jesus as some sort of coping mechanism, hey, whatever gets you through the nights, and days. But feeling something is true doesn't make it true- not for you, or anyone else.

I will say that laying your troubles in the arms o' Jaysus isn't going to do a single thing to make those troubles better, even if it may make you feel better about them for a while.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 02:05 AM   #681377 / #30
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I will say that laying your troubles in the arms o' Jaysus isn't going to do a single thing to make those troubles better, even if it may make you feel better about them for a while.
it sounds like it's doing something to make those troubles better. IMO, far too little emphasis is put on the general how you feel about life category. Troubles are troubles because of how we feel about them. That's kind of how we define troubles. Some troubles need material fixes but those are, I think, the vast minority of troubles. A free spirit is untroubled, as they say, or at least as they should say.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 02:06 AM   #681378 / #31
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There's not room in the head for both Christian faith in God and accepting science, facts and reality. If you accept God your reality will start warping truth around it. It's not a good place to be. And while you're with God there is only one predictable outcome. There's absolutely a correlation between stuff like faith in God and uncritically accepting fake news or denying global warming.
That's absolute bollocks. There may be not enough room in some heads perhaps, but I know plenty of Christians who are great scientists. I don't know where you are from - maybe in your part of the world you have only been exposed to particularly rabid evangelical type Christians, but that is not all there is.

I am quite sure that justme isn't going to turn into one of those, so will not suddenly start denying scientific fact.

I confess a vested interest. I have been getting a lot more spiritual lately. For the last few years I have been going along to my wife's church on a Sunday. Initially, this was just to support her (actually to start with I was kind of dragged along), but more recently I admit I have been going for myself. In fact, she is away at the moment, visiting family, and I went without her. I don't see it in any way a contradiction with my scientific training. And pretty much everyone in the church has a more liberal and accepting view of gays and transgenders than I have - in fact, I have been challenged by this somewhat. While I would not go so far as accepting it as a literal truth, I am willing to accept there is a lot of figurative truth and awareness of the human condition in their beliefs.
I know a lot of scientists, really a lot, and I don't know any that profess christian beliefs. Of course, they may just not talk about it. That said, well over half have what we colloquially call 'spiritual outlooks'. Of those, many apply as deep a skepticism towards the philosophical implications of a physicalist view of science as they do towards the design of any experiment. I might go so far as to say that the default position among those that have a spiritual outlook is that all we have ruled out through science are ideas that humans have articulated over the millennia, one over infinity perhaps. And that the figurative truths of religion are sometimes the deepest truths we have as a species.

I personally am somewhat on the fence about that but am definitely not opposed to the idea. I definitely think that if you are asking god for emotional support and god delivers that, then that's a good thing and I really have no adequate vantage point from which to pass judgment. However, if god starts telling a person how other people should feel, that's a different ballgame and the defenses go up.

Justme, whatever works. God is a complicated word. You certainly don't need to accept anyone else's definitions and are probably lucky to have found your peace. I think maybe most people never do.
Thank you for this.

I have heard of Scientists that were Christian but I'm not going to do any research on the matter. The way I see science is that it is an social and economic imperative. We simply can not surive in a world without a concerted effort in the revelations of learning. It is an essential part of our humanity that we seek out the answers to everything, including spiritualism and philosophy.

The only people who are afraid of Science are those who have something to loose by it and that is not religion. Religion and science should remain two separate entities as the concentrate, or should on separate areas of the human experience.

The one thing I've come to understand that everybody needs the benefits of science but only some need religion, because of free will. I'm not going to preach God here, so I will say that those who seek religion have something missing in their lives that religion fulfills. I think everyone has something missing from their life, but they find what they need in relationships, areas of expertise or even these websites.

I know there are some out there who are avidly against God, religion or anything to do with spiritualism and I'm sure that the abuses that religion has inflicted upon the world may be at the heart of this distaste. I know that these feelings are justified, especially when so many who claim religion have been tyrannical when they held the opinion of the public and when they lost it , whiny and bitter claiming to be victims of intolerance when they have been that way since time memorial. I fully acknowledge this and I grieve for those people who were put through Hell because of it.

I don't think that religion came to be with that intent and I don't think that the run of the mill Christian, Muslim, Buddhist or whatever runs lock step with those who claim to be the leaders of their perspective faiths, when it comes to dealing with outsiders. I think those within the hierarchy needed something to demonize in order for them to remain in control and through the years their ploy has gotten old and a tipping point has been reached and that is where we find ourselves right now.

My need is being fulfilled by the course of actions I have taken and I am pleased with that. If others find comfort elsewhere, it is not on me, but I will fight tooth and nail to have that right, even If I have to fight the Church to do it.

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Old 29 Nov 2017, 03:53 AM   #681388 / #32
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You demand of me that I produce proof of my feelings
There is nothing at all in my posts that can be construed as a demand to produce proof. You are of course free to post whatever you like. That's fine. Am I not free to write what I think of whatever it is you have posted? Not fine?
What you've done when you called my explanation imbecilic you placed me in a corner where you rejected out of hand my explanation in this matter. The only alternative would be to try and prove it and I know that since I couldn't describe effectively what I wanted to relate to you before that I could not after that.

What other course of action was available to be other than repeating myself.
Great. Not only do you read words I did not write, but you also ignore words I did write.

I'll just paste copypaste the relevant comment, highlighting the words with which I quite explicitly told you which action I wanted you to take: "you have exactly nothing to back your conviction up with except to say "Well, I know it's true because I think it's true." Please reflect on the utter imbecility of that." See? No expectation of you proving something to me or repeating yourself. I just asked you to think about what you wrote in the light of me pointing out its imbecilic circularity, which by the way puts paid to your most recent error, namely that I have rejected your explanation out of hand. I gave you a reason for my rejection. Your explanation is circular. It explains nothing.

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Old 29 Nov 2017, 09:04 AM   #681395 / #33
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I appriciate your interest in this and I understand what you are coming from with this Atheist Religion, but with every faith their needs to be an effective anchor where which the adherents look towards for that guidance within the religion and to be the disciplinarian when they stray. Without that the religion becomes philosophical experiment.
But there's an obvious come back to that. That anchor is already working for you in spite of God probably not existing. So what is working for you is your belief. Not God's existence. You've already proven that the anchor can work (i be effective) even if it's not attached to anything real.

So I don't think you understand where I'm coming from. To me it looks like you've embraced the most shallow and childish form of Christianity. I'm not saying that to insult you. I mean, religious faith, as if a childish would have invented it. Replacing one's father for God (ie loving and protective super daddy). I think it's limiting and I highly doubt this is what the writers of the Bible had in mind. Because they must have read plenty of Greek philosophy. They'd have realized the human urge to regress and to stop having to take responsibility. Because life is harsh and scary.

To go off a bit on a tangent, about a decade ago there was a major debate within Zoroastrianism whether they were atheists or not. The Zoroastrian God, Ahura Mazda, is written in the pagan tradition. So the real and metaphor is blatantly mixed. It's written on purpose to be a contradiction. Or that was the argument of the atheists. The argument of the theist Zoroastrians were to bend over backwards and try to creatively interpret the Avesta (their sacred text) to make it work somehow. To make it basically, into the Abrahamic God.

The atheist Zoroastrians called the theist Ahura Mazda "the great penis in the sky". I think it's such a perfect line, and catches what childish Christianity is IMHO.

Not all Christianity is alike. Some of it is shallow, childish and dumb. Some of it is smart, deep and full of wisdom. You know... just like life in general.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 09:18 AM   #681397 / #34
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There's not room in the head for both Christian faith in God and accepting science, facts and reality. If you accept God your reality will start warping truth around it. It's not a good place to be. And while you're with God there is only one predictable outcome. There's absolutely a correlation between stuff like faith in God and uncritically accepting fake news or denying global warming.
That's absolute bollocks. There may be not enough room in some heads perhaps, but I know plenty of Christians who are great scientists. I don't know where you are from - maybe in your part of the world you have only been exposed to particularly rabid evangelical type Christians, but that is not all there is.

I am quite sure that justme isn't going to turn into one of those, so will not suddenly start denying scientific fact.

I confess a vested interest. I have been getting a lot more spiritual lately. For the last few years I have been going along to my wife's church on a Sunday. Initially, this was just to support her (actually to start with I was kind of dragged along), but more recently I admit I have been going for myself. In fact, she is away at the moment, visiting family, and I went without her. I don't see it in any way a contradiction with my scientific training. And pretty much everyone in the church has a more liberal and accepting view of gays and transgenders than I have - in fact, I have been challenged by this somewhat. While I would not go so far as accepting it as a literal truth, I am willing to accept there is a lot of figurative truth and awareness of the human condition in their beliefs.
I know a lot of scientists, really a lot, and I don't know any that profess christian beliefs. Of course, they may just not talk about it. That said, well over half have what we colloquially call 'spiritual outlooks'. Of those, many apply as deep a skepticism towards the philosophical implications of a physicalist view of science as they do towards the design of any experiment. I might go so far as to say that the default position among those that have a spiritual outlook is that all we have ruled out through science are ideas that humans have articulated over the millennia, one over infinity perhaps. And that the figurative truths of religion are sometimes the deepest truths we have as a species.

I personally am somewhat on the fence about that but am definitely not opposed to the idea. I definitely think that if you are asking god for emotional support and god delivers that, then that's a good thing and I really have no adequate vantage point from which to pass judgment. However, if god starts telling a person how other people should feel, that's a different ballgame and the defenses go up.

Justme, whatever works. God is a complicated word. You certainly don't need to accept anyone else's definitions and are probably lucky to have found your peace. I think maybe most people never do.
First off, it's not been studied that much. There's just been a couple of surveys. And most of those surveys do not go into detail what they believe. In many cultures religion is more about identity than belief. "Faith" is actually a bad word for religion. Because belonging to most religions is about doing the rituals. Rather than what you believe. Most gods can't or don't give a rats ass what it's devotees are thinking. They just want their idols washed with goats milk or whatever. The term faith is only going to be aplicable to Christian and Muslim scientists.

https://phys.org/news/2015-12-worldw...cientists.html

And to my knowledge the only good study of what people actually believe is the American religious identification study. That one, predictably, only covers Americans. And I think we all can agree that USA, for a western country, is a weird country. The rest of the west are way ahead when it comes to secularization.

http://commons.trincoll.edu/aris/

In USA about 15% of top level scientists within hard sciences are religious (not atheists). If we include soft sciences that number rises to 40%.

Outside USA we have no clue. In Pakistan being an atheist is illegal. How many Pakistani scientists do you think will answer honestly on a poll? In India Hinduism is fully compatible with atheism. An atheistic Indian with a Hindu family has no reason not to answer that they're not Hindus.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 01:53 PM   #681405 / #35
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I almost lost me mind a while ago and fell down on my knees and asked God to take all of this craziness with my daughter away and felt the Holy Spirit come over me like a wave of warmth, I haven't felt since my body came off the alcohol some 40 years ago.

I had tried to live in both worlds as a fraud and I can no longer do that. I have come here to profess being an unapologetic Christian, but one that has no intention of evangelizing those who don't wish to here the word of God.
I am curious about a few things. You say on the one hand that you asked “God” to “take all the craziness” with your daughter away and then felt the “Holy Spirit” and that you are now an “unapologetic Christian.”

Two questions spring to mind:
  1. Why Christian?
  2. Did this god in fact “take all the craziness” with your daughter away?

I ask 1 because as you noted you had been living a “fraud” among us, presumably meaning that you were either pretending to be an atheist or thought you were an atheist until this moment of desperate outreach to the heavens. But the fact that you immediately translated everything into Christian terminology would tend to betray that you never deprogrammed on any level to begin with.

Which is fine, but that leads us to 2. From what you wrote here and elsewhere of late, it would appear that you have been under tremendous stress for many different reasons, but in particular for suppressing your true identity; not just from us here, of course and in regard to your religious beliefs, but in the world in general and with your family in regard to much deeper identity issues, which in itself is, as you know, an extremely stressful situation that has been weighing on you most likely your entire life. That’s a LOT of stress as a constant and it’s all centered around suppressing your true identity.

Now let’s break down what happened in regard to 1. You spoke in your mind’s voice within your skull (or you may have actually forced breath through your larynx and spoke out loud) your ask, not of an unspecified magical being or even a general concept of a god, but specifically the “Christian” version of such a being and that ask was specific (to take all the craziness with your daughter away).

Iow, you freed a part of your suppressed identity—i.e., the part that says, “I am a Christian”—that you had been repressing along with the other parts of your identity for whatever reason.

Then what happened? Did this being answer your ask? No. The “craziness” with your daughter is still there. Instead what happened was a dopamine release from the stress of pretending you aren’t a Christian being released and that relief of stress—tied to a deeper issue of true identity—washed over you, which you, being a Christian interpreted as the “Holy Spirit” bathing you in warmth. A warming sensation, btw, that naturally accompanies any such intense stress relief/dopamine release. Just voicing something that has long been repressed causes the exact same reaction; no gods needed.

Why am I pointing this out? Because, you did not just reach out to the universe for the solution to a serious problem. You have been under extreme stress because of a serious problem that backed you into a corner (or “foxhole”) and out of desperation to solve an insolvable problem fell back on cult programming. The relief from that suppressed programming being released was then misinterpreted by you into cult terminology and doing what it was intended to do; ignore your actual problem, but still feel good (dopamine release).

So, while plebian is correct in that part of the issue with having stress and “problems” to begin with is how we feel about them, this kind of stress release doesn’t actually address your problem; far from it in fact. It addresses your strong, programmed desire to deny the problem and simply supplant those feelings with the drug of cultism (the opiate of the masses). Because part of the problem—central no less—is that it is not easily resolved. In your mind, it requires magic, because only magic—and therefore only a magical being—could possibly take away the craziness.

Which is false. You can take away the craziness, you just don’t know how to go about it. It feels overwhelming. And cults like Christianity know this and deliberately give you a way out but it never actually solves any problems. You don’t have to do anything but ask the magical being and you can trigger a dopamine release so that you are literally drugging yourself rather than addressing the actual problem.

What would you say to someone who wrote, “The only way to deal with my problems is to ignore them and shoot up heroin to make me feel good about ignoring them”? You’d (hopefully) be appalled by such a proposition, but that is effectively exactly what you are doing, only dopamine is far more potent than heroin.

Again, you asked and it did not take the craziness with your daughter away; by your own words all “it” did was flood your body with a warm feeling. And you are mistaking your OWN stress relief mechanisms as evidence of a belief you already had programmed into you. If not, then you would have said something very different, like, “I shouted out to the universe and just voicing my worries helped and I felt better.” It’s the exact same sequence of events only no programmed cult terminology.

If that still isn’t clear then ask yourself why you didn’t say something like, “I asked Mithras to take the craziness with my daughter away and suddenly he filled me with his light and I am now an unapologetic Pagan” or “I asked Allah and I am now an unapologetic Muslim”?

ETA: Believe it or not, I’m not saying any of this to challenge your Christianity; I’m saying it because you still have a problem to solve only instead of doing so, you’re in serious danger of just becoming a drug addict again, only the drug is Christianity and your own dopamine.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 02:41 PM   #681410 / #36
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You can take away the craziness, you just don’t know how to go about it. It feels overwhelming. And cults like Christianity know this and deliberately give you a way out but it never actually solves any problems. You don’t have to do anything but ask the magical being and you can trigger a dopamine release so that you are literally drugging yourself rather than addressing the actual problem.
This expands on my point.

Justme, I've seen far too many parents going through this same sort of agony. Sometimes- usually- all you can do is to refuse to let your daughter or son drag you down with them; tell them "it ain't my little red wagon, and I ain't a-gonna pull it." Which is hard, hard, I know. But when your kids get past 20 or so, you have to let them steer their own course; and if they persist in trying to navigate dangerous waters, don't follow them. All you can do is warn them to the best of your ability, and only offer such help as you can afford without risking your own life and well being. Don't let her guilt you into dealing with things only she is responsible for.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 04:17 PM   #681419 / #37
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You demand of me that I produce proof of my feelings
There is nothing at all in my posts that can be construed as a demand to produce proof. You are of course free to post whatever you like. That's fine. Am I not free to write what I think of whatever it is you have posted? Not fine?
What you've done when you called my explanation imbecilic you placed me in a corner where you rejected out of hand my explanation in this matter. The only alternative would be to try and prove it and I know that since I couldn't describe effectively what I wanted to relate to you before that I could not after that.

What other course of action was available to be other than repeating myself.
Great. Not only do you read words I did not write, but you also ignore words I did write.

I'll just paste copypaste the relevant comment, highlighting the words with which I quite explicitly told you which action I wanted you to take: "you have exactly nothing to back your conviction up with except to say "Well, I know it's true because I think it's true." Please reflect on the utter imbecility of that." See? No expectation of you proving something to me or repeating yourself. I just asked you to think about what you wrote in the light of me pointing out its imbecilic circularity, which by the way puts paid to your most recent error, namely that I have rejected your explanation out of hand. I gave you a reason for my rejection. Your explanation is circular. It explains nothing.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 04:23 PM   #681420 / #38
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He is an entity who can and does at his own discretion, takes steps to influence the world he made for those who have given him the respect and acknowledgement of being who he is.
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I am not dodging anything because the truth is I don't know.
Can't have it both ways, justme. You can claim knowledge about God, or you can admit ignorance- but if you start talking about what God wants, or is, you are contradicting your claim of ignorance.

If you want to use Jesus as some sort of coping mechanism, hey, whatever gets you through the nights, and days. But feeling something is true doesn't make it true- not for you, or anyone else.

I will say that laying your troubles in the arms o' Jaysus isn't going to do a single thing to make those troubles better, even if it may make you feel better about them for a while.
That's like saying that I can't say what I know about you because I don't know everything about you.

This isn't a debate Jobar I am answering questions that are put to me by members here as best that I can. I'm not promoting anything or justifying myself.

That is what I said when I first started this and I do so, again now.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 04:41 PM   #681424 / #39
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That's like saying that I can't say what I know about you because I don't know everything about you.
Er- no, really it's not like that.

If you make claims about what God is, or wants of us, then you can't say you don't know what God is, or wants of us. One statement makes you a believer, the other makes you an agnostic.

Granted that I have seen people who tried to claim the status of agnostic theists- they say they believe, but don't claim to know the nature of God, or even if he exists. But to me that makes such a belief nonsensical; you believe, because you believe, because you believe... no ground, no sense, no logic. Most of all, no good; it doesn't help you with anything in the real world. It may, as Koy notes, give you the same sort of consolation a child gets from cuddling his teddy bear; it may chase off imaginary monsters, but the real ones don't go away.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 08:08 PM   #681436 / #40
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Worse, the real problems compound precisely because no action is being taken. It is no different than a drug addict or alcoholic temporarily deadening their pain. The hole is being filled with an even bigger hole.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 08:39 PM   #681438 / #41
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Worse, the real problems compound precisely because no action is being taken. It is no different than a drug addict or alcoholic temporarily deadening their pain. The hole is being filled with an even bigger hole.
What? Life is inherently meaningless. That's just a fact. We all have a gaping hole in our souls. We can either live a lie, and make it a bit more pleasant (what Nietzsche calls "affirmative nihilism") or suffer all the time. Suffering fucking sucks and almost every person avoid this. So the lie.

I have every respect for theists choosing the lie. But their meaning of life is no more a lie, than anyone else's. I bounce out of bed in the morning as if my life had meaning, ie living a lie. I know it doesn't. But I've managed to convince myself that getting out of bed in the morning matters some how. So a lie.

It was a very long time ago I got down from this particular high horse. I really don't judge theists for this. No lie is superior to any other lie.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 09:43 PM   #681445 / #42
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Worse, the real problems compound precisely because no action is being taken. It is no different than a drug addict or alcoholic temporarily deadening their pain. The hole is being filled with an even bigger hole.
What? Life is inherently meaningless. That's just a fact.
Actually it’s an existential crisis. Meaning is subjectively applied by the individual. While existence in the general sense has no inherent meaning in and of itself, any individual applies whatever meaning he or she wishes to any aspect (or none) of their existence.

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We all have a gaping hole in our souls.
I’ll assume you mean that figuratively, but, regardless justme is not referring to such a hole. She specifically referred to “this craziness with my daughter” that is causing the problem that she is evidently now avoiding through mainlining Christianity. That problem will not go away just because justme wishes to believe in a magical being.

To support such denial is to doom her not free her just as turning a blind eye would to someone shooting heroin to avoid their problems.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 09:59 PM   #681449 / #43
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I appriciate your interest in this and I understand what you are coming from with this Atheist Religion, but with every faith their needs to be an effective anchor where which the adherents look towards for that guidance within the religion and to be the disciplinarian when they stray. Without that the religion becomes philosophical experiment.
But there's an obvious come back to that. That anchor is already working for you in spite of God probably not existing. So what is working for you is your belief. Not God's existence. You've already proven that the anchor can work (i be effective) even if it's not attached to anything real.

So I don't think you understand where I'm coming from. To me it looks like you've embraced the most shallow and childish form of Christianity. I'm not saying that to insult you. I mean, religious faith, as if a childish would have invented it. Replacing one's father for God (ie loving and protective super daddy). I think it's limiting and I highly doubt this is what the writers of the Bible had in mind. Because they must have read plenty of Greek philosophy. They'd have realized the human urge to regress and to stop having to take responsibility. Because life is harsh and scary.

To go off a bit on a tangent, about a decade ago there was a major debate within Zoroastrianism whether they were atheists or not. The Zoroastrian God, Ahura Mazda, is written in the pagan tradition. So the real and metaphor is blatantly mixed. It's written on purpose to be a contradiction. Or that was the argument of the atheists. The argument of the theist Zoroastrians were to bend over backwards and try to creatively interpret the Avesta (their sacred text) to make it work somehow. To make it basically, into the Abrahamic God.

The atheist Zoroastrians called the theist Ahura Mazda "the great penis in the sky". I think it's such a perfect line, and catches what childish Christianity is IMHO.

Not all Christianity is alike. Some of it is shallow, childish and dumb. Some of it is smart, deep and full of wisdom. You know... just like life in general.
The anchor is the key by winch all other things are realized. It is not wither it works or not that matters. It's the presence in the minds of it's adherents that matters. Reality as we call it is perception and if the initial perception is positive then it draws the adherent to the anchor because he identifies that experience with the anchor.

I don't iidentify with the idea of different levels of Christianity, nor do I deal with the differences between the sect. It do so is to subscribe to another's interpretation of Christianity It's basic because it was created to be that way. The Bible is set up just as basically because it was made for the laymen to read without reading into it to find what you could use to your advantage, as many through time have.

You can call it childish all you'd like because that's where the term, born again comes to mind.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 10:12 PM   #681451 / #44
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That's like saying that I can't say what I know about you because I don't know everything about you.
Er- no, really it's not like that.

If you make claims about what God is, or wants of us, then you can't say you don't know what God is, or wants of us. One statement makes you a believer, the other makes you an agnostic.

Granted that I have seen people who tried to claim the status of agnostic theists- they say they believe, but don't claim to know the nature of God, or even if he exists. But to me that makes such a belief nonsensical; you believe, because you believe, because you believe... no ground, no sense, no logic. Most of all, no good; it doesn't help you with anything in the real world. It may, as Koy notes, give you the same sort of consolation a child gets from cuddling his teddy bear; it may chase off imaginary monsters, but the real ones don't go away.
What I said is what he did for me, what I said about not knowing is about the dependencies in the Bible. I don't think I extended that out from there.
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Old 29 Nov 2017, 10:16 PM   #681452 / #45
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I almost lost me mind a while ago and fell down on my knees and asked God to take all of this craziness with my daughter away and felt the Holy Spirit come over me like a wave of warmth, I haven't felt since my body came off the alcohol some 40 years ago.

I had tried to live in both worlds as a fraud and I can no longer do that. I have come here to profess being an unapologetic Christian, but one that has no intention of evangelizing those who don't wish to here the word of God.
I am curious about a few things. You say on the one hand that you asked “God” to “take all the craziness” with your daughter away and then felt the “Holy Spirit” and that you are now an “unapologetic Christian.”

Two questions spring to mind:
  1. Why Christian?
  2. Did this god in fact “take all the craziness” with your daughter away?

I ask 1 because as you noted you had been living a “fraud” among us, presumably meaning that you were either pretending to be an atheist or thought you were an atheist until this moment of desperate outreach to the heavens. But the fact that you immediately translated everything into Christian terminology would tend to betray that you never deprogrammed on any level to begin with.

Which is fine, but that leads us to 2. From what you wrote here and elsewhere of late, it would appear that you have been under tremendous stress for many different reasons, but in particular for suppressing your true identity; not just from us here, of course and in regard to your religious beliefs, but in the world in general and with your family in regard to much deeper identity issues, which in itself is, as you know, an extremely stressful situation that has been weighing on you most likely your entire life. That’s a LOT of stress as a constant and it’s all centered around suppressing your true identity.

Now let’s break down what happened in regard to 1. You spoke in your mind’s voice within your skull (or you may have actually forced breath through your larynx and spoke out loud) your ask, not of an unspecified magical being or even a general concept of a god, but specifically the “Christian” version of such a being and that ask was specific (to take all the craziness with your daughter away).

Iow, you freed a part of your suppressed identity—i.e., the part that says, “I am a Christian”—that you had been repressing along with the other parts of your identity for whatever reason.

Then what happened? Did this being answer your ask? No. The “craziness” with your daughter is still there. Instead what happened was a dopamine release from the stress of pretending you aren’t a Christian being released and that relief of stress—tied to a deeper issue of true identity—washed over you, which you, being a Christian interpreted as the “Holy Spirit” bathing you in warmth. A warming sensation, btw, that naturally accompanies any such intense stress relief/dopamine release. Just voicing something that has long been repressed causes the exact same reaction; no gods needed.

Why am I pointing this out? Because, you did not just reach out to the universe for the solution to a serious problem. You have been under extreme stress because of a serious problem that backed you into a corner (or “foxhole”) and out of desperation to solve an insolvable problem fell back on cult programming. The relief from that suppressed programming being released was then misinterpreted by you into cult terminology and doing what it was intended to do; ignore your actual problem, but still feel good (dopamine release).

So, while plebian is correct in that part of the issue with having stress and “problems” to begin with is how we feel about them, this kind of stress release doesn’t actually address your problem; far from it in fact. It addresses your strong, programmed desire to deny the problem and simply supplant those feelings with the drug of cultism (the opiate of the masses). Because part of the problem—central no less—is that it is not easily resolved. In your mind, it requires magic, because only magic—and therefore only a magical being—could possibly take away the craziness.

Which is false. You can take away the craziness, you just don’t know how to go about it. It feels overwhelming. And cults like Christianity know this and deliberately give you a way out but it never actually solves any problems. You don’t have to do anything but ask the magical being and you can trigger a dopamine release so that you are literally drugging yourself rather than addressing the actual problem.

What would you say to someone who wrote, “The only way to deal with my problems is to ignore them and shoot up heroin to make me feel good about ignoring them”? You’d (hopefully) be appalled by such a proposition, but that is effectively exactly what you are doing, only dopamine is far more potent than heroin.

Again, you asked and it did not take the craziness with your daughter away; by your own words all “it” did was flood your body with a warm feeling. And you are mistaking your OWN stress relief mechanisms as evidence of a belief you already had programmed into you. If not, then you would have said something very different, like, “I shouted out to the universe and just voicing my worries helped and I felt better.” It’s the exact same sequence of events only no programmed cult terminology.

If that still isn’t clear then ask yourself why you didn’t say something like, “I asked Mithras to take the craziness with my daughter away and suddenly he filled me with his light and I am now an unapologetic Pagan” or “I asked Allah and I am now an unapologetic Muslim”?

ETA: Believe it or not, I’m not saying any of this to challenge your Christianity; I’m saying it because you still have a problem to solve only instead of doing so, you’re in serious danger of just becoming a drug addict again, only the drug is Christianity and your own dopamine.
I ran away from home to get away from all that. I never looked back, so no, I was not as you say deprogrammed.
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Old 30 Nov 2017, 12:46 AM   #681459 / #46
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So, isn’t it more likely that the feeling of warmth that washed over you that you have attributed to the “Holy Ghost” was just the normal physiological response as I described and that the reason you have instead attributed it to a magical being is due to your previous programming?

And, more importantly, am I correct in assuming that the problem with your daughter has not gone away?
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Old 30 Nov 2017, 09:16 AM   #681485 / #47
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The anchor is the key by winch all other things are realized. It is not wither it works or not that matters. It's the presence in the minds of it's adherents that matters.
I think you're waffling now. Don't you agree that that is a meaningless phrase?

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Reality as we call it is perception and if the initial perception is positive then it draws the adherent to the anchor because he identifies that experience with the anchor.
We perceive all manner of crap that is there. It's not "seeing is believing". It's "believing is seeing". If you believe something you will see it. That's as true for theists and atheists. That's why it's so important to have a skeptical mindset.

I think a more correct statement is that anything can be an anchor, and if you identify some arbitrary thing as your anchor, you will be drawn to it. While true, isn't saying much.

This btw is super easy to test yourself by experimenting with your own mind. Thomas Metzinger's "the Ego Tunnel", is a great book, on this topic, full of psychological experiments you can do on yourself

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I don't iidentify with the idea of different levels of Christianity, nor do I deal with the differences between the sect. It do so is to subscribe to another's interpretation of Christianity It's basic because it was created to be that way. The Bible is set up just as basically because it was made for the laymen to read without reading into it to find what you could use to your advantage, as many through time have.
No it wasn't. Literacy rates were low. Perhaps 10% of urbans and something like 0.01% of rurals. But just being able to read wasn't the major obstacle. It as obtaining an incredibly expensive book. A book cost the equivalent of an expensive luxury car today. They didn't have paper back then. They wrote on vellum. So leather. Expensive as hell to produce. And then you needed to have a scribe use all that time to copy it. The ability to read and write was rare, which pushed up the price of scribes. Most of the early Christian churches did not own a complete Bible of their own. They usually only owned parts, and would trade them around with other churches.

The idea that the Bible was written for regular people to read is ridiculous. It was written to be read out aloud by experts and interpreted. Just like in any Christian mass. Most early Christians would never be able to even touch a Bible. Let alone read it.

Protestantism was a movement that only could exist after the invention of the printing press. That's why Christian fundamentalism is so dumb. I'm not talking about Christian litteralism. But "ad fontes". The original meaning. That every Christian should read the text themselves and make their own interpretation. That's not how ancient religion worked. It's a wholly modern idea.

BTW, the original name of the most popular Christian Bible is "versio vulgata". Which means roughly "version of translation for the common people". That implies that there were other versions that weren't for common people. Which also implies that the different Bibles had different degrees of depth to them.
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Old 30 Nov 2017, 11:42 AM   #681497 / #48
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The idea that the Bible was written for regular people to read is ridiculous. It was written to be read out aloud by experts and interpreted. Just like in any Christian mass. Most early Christians would never be able to even touch a Bible. Let alone read it.
Not only was it not meant to be read by ordinary Christians, it was not even meant to be understood by them when it was read out to them. For this reason it was kept in Latin for a thousand years, which no commoner, i.e. almost everybody, understood. The church hierarchy has actually killed as many of those who translated the Bible into languages that local populations spoke and understood as it could. People who got caught with contraband Bibles, that is Bibles not written in Latin, were also executed, and for the same reason: The Bible was not meant to be read or understood by regular people.
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Old 30 Nov 2017, 11:57 AM   #681498 / #49
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The idea that the Bible was written for regular people to read is ridiculous. It was written to be read out aloud by experts and interpreted. Just like in any Christian mass. Most early Christians would never be able to even touch a Bible. Let alone read it.
Not only was it not meant to be read by ordinary Christians, it was not even meant to be understood by them when it was read out to them. For this reason it was kept in Latin for a thousand years, which no commoner, i.e. almost everybody, understood. The church hierarchy has actually killed as many of those who translated the Bible into languages that local populations spoke and understood as it could. People who got caught with contraband Bibles, that is Bibles not written in Latin, were also executed, and for the same reason: The Bible was not meant to be read or understood by regular people.
Sure. But I don't think that was any great conspiracy. Back then they viewed reading and writing as magic. As actual magic. If you take a peak at how ancient sorcery works it's all about "knowing the true name" of such and such and thereby controlling their minds. It's basically a metaphor for being able to sway others with a convincing argument.

When an ancient saw a priest reading the Bible they were basically watching Gandalf.

And magical spells require observance of ritual, down to every detail. Or the magic would go wrong. So nothing was allowed to be changed. This BTW, was a big thing in Paganism. It's the "regression to the mean" fallacy in action (or post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy). If you spoke a spell and something happened afterwards there's a causality there, and you better speak the spell the same way every time.

To me, I think maintaining the Latin makes perfect sense, to a mind primed for magical thinking.

Also, the fact that priests were all trained in Latin meant that news could be spread throughout Europe efficiently. Priests were not only spiritual leaders. They were communication hubs. That's why Latin was the Lingua Franca of science until English came and ruined it. Anyhoo... after the reformation that way of communication was disrupted. What I'm saying is that there were spin-off benefits of keeping the Bible in Latin.

We give the medieval church a lot of grief. But a lot of their policies in practices were actually really sensible. And were a boon to society.
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Old 30 Nov 2017, 12:38 PM   #681499 / #50
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Conspiracy? Who mentioned conspiracy? I simply pointed out that the "regular people" were not merely not supposed to read the Bible - they were not meant to understand what was written in it either. At best they were meant to listen to and accept the interpretations offered by the clergy. In short, justme has no idea what she is talking about.
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