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Hi from a theist!

        I'm  from another forum  that is associated with a  site called Tentmaker.  Anyone heard of it?    Anyway,  I come from a fundamentalist christian background from childhood. (That might mean there is no hope for me from your perspective, lol)      About two years ago my religious beliefs changed ,   I started having a problem with the idea of eternal torment doctrine.  That was the biggest problem.   Long story short,   now I'm a christian universalist.     I live in Illinois .       I guess I'm here to hear responses to christian universalism.      I think that a  Creator exists because of complexities,   however I think religions  are wrong.    And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  


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Welcome fullarmor2!I am from

Welcome fullarmor2!

I am from Illinois as well ~ Chicagoland ~ enjoying the cold weather?  Smiling

Can you get a bit into your thought process when it comes to your lack of belief in an eternal hell? What were a few of the key issues with the eternal torment doctrine that made you start to doubt hell exists?

 

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Welcome fullarmor2.  I'm a

Welcome fullarmor2.  I'm a former fundamentalist Christian who accidentally lost his faith.  At any rate, I appreciate that you seem to embrace a more compassionate theology than the average Christian.  Hope your stay here is enjoyable for you.

I'm a right wing atheist because I enjoy being hated by everyone.

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I don't know much about

I don't know much about Christian universalism, but from what you say it sounds a bit like deism.

My response would be basically, don't you think you're just believing out of ignorance? You don't know where complexity comes from, so you jump to the conclusion it must be a creator. Well, that's a classic fallacy of the argument from ignorance. The premise, "I don't know." doesn't provide support for any conclusions. "I don't know, therefore Creator," is an invalid argument. Why don't you instead say, "I don't know, therefore, huh, I guess I just don't know."

Look at all the religions around the world. You say if a Creator exists, christian universalism makes the most sense. Why? Why not Islam or Hinduism? Aren't you just a Christian because you were raised in a Christian family in a mostly-Christian culture? Isn't that a better explanation than "I don't know, therefore Christian universalism."?

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Welcome Fullarmour2. I was

Welcome Fullarmour2. I was raised a fundamentalist then became a Catholic, and after much study became first a skeptic then an atheist. So, you never know, since you already have departed from fundamentalism perhaps you are on the road. In any event, welcome and I hope your enjoy yourself here and learn more of us.

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Complexity? Nah...

Complexity is easily demonstrated to arise from simplicity. Lots of simple elements, a flow of available energy, is all you need.

If complexity can only be created by a creator being, which is much more complex that what it creates, you are faced with an infinite regress of creators.

Since we have endless examples of complex stuff arising from relatively simple laws describing the individual behavior of simple things gathered into to large collections, we have no need to try and explain something in such a problematic way.

Best example, at least in non-living things, is probably the weather, stemming from the behaviour of a mixture of gas molecules exposed to sunlight and a non-uniform surface. Modelling the complexities of global weather is taxing the capabilities of our most powerful computers.

Even in the abstract world of Mathematics, the famous Mandelbrot Set demonstrates how repeatedly applying a very simple equation can generate a pattern of literally infinite complexity. 

So 'complexity' is a total fail as a justification for 'God'. Got nothing going for it. Sorry.

Maybe you meant (Apparent) 'Design'. That would have been a better reason, still doesn't really work, IMHO, but could get into more serious discussion.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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 I'm a little confused. If

 I'm a little confused. If you're not into religion, how do you get to the Christian part from "maybe a creator makes things complex."   That seems to require that you're buying the whole virgin birth, miracles, resurrection hullaballoo.    (Instead of mere deism.)

 

If you buy "creator" why not Odin or Ra? Why Jesus?


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Hi there

 

Evangelist minister/christian missionary's black sheep son here. 

It sounds like you need to meet FurryCatHerder. You two might have certain core beliefs in common.

I agree with Bob that approaching life from the long end of billions of years of evolution is an error. You have to claw your way back to the simplest form. I find it easier to believe simple creatures increased in complexity to exploit niches that facilitated their survival than to accept there is an alternative reality out there beyond the universe that's populated by an undefinable god, angels and other improbable creatures that don't exist in the natural world and that have never, ever been seen outside human imagination. The evolution of living organisms is an actual observable science.

Anyway - theists with working brains are always very welcome so try to ignore the heated moments that will inevitably arise and feel free to argue your position with theists like Jumbo and eXni (and possibly EJ) who believe the garden of eden was real and the eating of an apple by a woman (who had no concept of right and wrong till she ate it) was the cause of all the suffering the world has ever seen, including eternal immolation for most humans born. 

Apologies to eve, incidentally. I'm sure that whole story far from being a case of original sin is in fact a case of original sexism and an example of a large number of dumb blokes unable to get their heads around the biology of the menstrual cycle without anthropomorphosising it into some sort of weird blood sacrifice/sign of innate guilt thing.

Stupid.

 

 

 

 

 

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fullarmor2

fullarmor2 wrote:

        I'm  from another forum  that is associated with a  site called Tentmaker.  Anyone heard of it?    Anyway,  I come from a fundamentalist christian background from childhood. (That might mean there is no hope for me from your perspective, lol)      About two years ago my religious beliefs changed ,   I started having a problem with the idea of eternal torment doctrine.  That was the biggest problem.   Long story short,   now I'm a christian universalist.     I live in Illinois .       I guess I'm here to hear responses to christian universalism.      I think that a  Creator exists because of complexities,   however I think religions  are wrong.    And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  

Back where I used to live, even as an atheist I attended a Universalist Church. Universalists tend to be very open minded, but just like many humanists atheists, also tend to be politically correct.

Having said that, it is always nice to meet people who aren't bible thumping bigots.

ALSO, having said that. Just to warn you, this sight contains blasphemy and blunt criticsim. You will find some people here have library type conversations, while others, like me, don't mind the verbal boxing ring. ALWAYS keep in mind that we are all individuals.

As to your movement to Universalism from fundamentalism. You have the same thing in common in your core belief that ALL people in history, from polytheism to monotheism. To believe that "someone" created everything, you have to believe in a brain with super powers and no material brain, no neurons, no cerebellum, that floats out there every where and nowhere at the same time, meddling in the affairs of humans.

The Egyptians thought the Sun was a thinking being for over 3,000 years and they were wrong. What makes you think you escaped the same flaw other cultures now and in the past have not? Did it ever occur to you that what went into all this was the result of a WHAT(natural process) and not a WHO(invisible brain with magic powers)?

In any case, glad to have you here.

 

 

 

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Welcome! I think you've

Welcome!
I think you've been bombarded enough for the moment, so I'll wait. Sticking out tongue

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Welcome

 Hello, I decided to write to you because you remind myself of me. I was a hardcore baptist, went through a fundi stage as well. I recognized organized religion for what it was so I decided to break away from the baptist scene and I started attending mostly Non-Denominational churches. Later I decided that there was nothing in the bible about going to a church every Sunday, so I decided to spend my Sundays doing the lords work out in the streets where it needed to be done most. I witnessed to homeless folks, and bought them food, bibles, cloths, all that jesusE stuff. I think breaking away from the beliefs I grew up with was the first major milestone in my enlightenment. I see you have broken that first milestone of no longer accepting what your parents forced on you. You are questioning and it is a good start. Most religious nuts do not even consider questioning. Only advice I can give you is never stop questioning. Never have anymore blind faith. Even after I admitted to myself I was an atheist I still researched things like evolution, Big Bang Theory and did not accept them simply because most atheist do. Your whole belief now is basically a "God of the Gaps" theory. You can't explain something (complexities) therefore you assume it must be a god. I am not closed to the idea of some type of creator, but I do not assume that creator would even have to be a god. Something else that helped me was this little saying. I can't remember where I heard it, but it was something like this. If we only know 1% of everything there is to know about the known universe think of how much we don't know, and probably can't comprehend. Just educate yourself as much as you can. ok, its late. peace. 

 

PS

I know my grammar and spelling suck. Sorry. 

 

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fullarmor2 wrote: I think

fullarmor2 wrote:

 I think that a  Creator exists because of complexities,    

So anything that is complex requires a creator is your deduction? If the universe has a Creator, then that Creator must be more complex than Universe.

So then who or what created the Creator?

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


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Hi, welcome to the

Hi, welcome to the forum!

fullarmor2 wrote:
I think that a  Creator exists because of complexities,

Not sure why you need a Creator for that.

 

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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And why do still believe in

And why do still believe in Jesus as a redeemer. etc? Even if you still think you need a God to explain complexity, that doesn't point to the Christian story as such. Could equally support any creator God idea, Yahweh, Allah, Shiva, ....

Or perhaps you are just progressively freeing yourself from the dogmas you followed, and can't yet let them all go. Many people here have been through that process, altho I was never into any of it myself.

 

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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      Wow.  Thanks for

      Wow.  Thanks for all the responses.    I look forward to explaining where I'm coming from at this time in my life,  and to hearing your responses.

 


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Welcome fullarmor2

 

 

 

            I noticed you claim a belief in a diety based on complexitys'.  May I point out to you one of the most complex organs among mammals;  the eye.

 

            Most mammals are color blind and  near sighted, even humans suffer these limitations, no to mention blindness.  Now even sharp eyed preditors have limitations,  they tend toward farsightedness,  that means they can't see very well close up; without their other senses -- smell & touch-- they are liable to start eating the nearby dirt or rock rather then their prey.

 

 

            The human eye, and we seem to have 14 billion of them existing today, suffer a 90%  failure rate.  Even the 50% or so who are born with 20/20 vision if they live long enough will suffer deterioration.  Now these limitation and failure rates are easy to explain with evolutionary principles.   But how can an omnipotent all-powerful creator screw up 90% of the  time and still be believed?  Would you buy a house or car that fell apart 90% of the time? 

 

 

           

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VEGETARIAN: Ancient Hindu word for "lousy hunter"

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fullarmor2

fullarmor2 wrote:

        I'm  from another forum  that is associated with a  site called Tentmaker.  Anyone heard of it?    Anyway,  I come from a fundamentalist christian background from childhood. (That might mean there is no hope for me from your perspective, lol)      About two years ago my religious beliefs changed ,   I started having a problem with the idea of eternal torment doctrine.  That was the biggest problem.   Long story short,   now I'm a christian universalist.     I live in Illinois .       I guess I'm here to hear responses to christian universalism.      I think that a  Creator exists because of complexities,   however I think religions  are wrong.    And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  

Nice to know you got away from Taliban style thinking, but you are not out of the woods yet.

I only speak for myself, and keep in mind, that there is a difference between my blasphemy, which you will get an earful of, and YOU the individual. So when you read my responses understand that I am attacking your claims, not you. I cannot judge you because I don't know you. That is a different story than having the ability to demonstrate what one claims as being credible, ON ANY GIVEN ISSUE, not just religion or god claims.

 

NOW, here comes my core criticism of ANY deity claim, not just yours.

There ARE many reasons atheists have for rejecting the idea of a god. But the best one I know of is simple. EVIDENCE. Thats it. There is no evidence. There is no way to replicate or falsify deity claims. Thus there is no credible reason to take them seriously.

To swallow a god claim is to believe that an invisible immaterial magical super brain with super powers exists. Call it Allah or Yahweh or Osirus, the concept is the same. A non-material invisible brain out there somewhere with no brain, no body, no neurons or cerebellum, meddling in the affairs of humans.

The concept is absurd and has no basis in reality.

NOW, here is what we do have in reality that we can prove.

We can prove time after time throughout history, that humans want to believe in these super heros so bad that they perpetuate these myths. Early gods were earthy, like volcanos and weather patterns and animals. That lead to language evolving and then the oral tradition with humans creating human like gods, then onto the written traditions of polytheism and now popular monotheism.

People believe in deities, not because they are real, but because they confuse their sense of awe for a god existing along with the ignorance of not wanting to accept their finite existence. If you can accept that neither Thor or Isis existed a billion years ago, what makes you think Jesus or Allah or Vishnu will exist 1 billion years from now?

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


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BTW,Complexity is a bad

BTW,

Complexity is a bad argument. What you fail to consider, along with Muslims and Jews and whomever making that argument is that complexity is a result of a WHAT, not a WHO.  Complexity is an emergent property, not a starting point, and is not dependent on any cognition to take place.

 

A raindrop is simple compared to a complex hurricane which is made up of tons of simplistic parts, such as air temperature, high and low pressure, jet stream, water temperature.....ect ect ect...But you don't think a hurricane is a thinking entity. Trillions of molecules are part of that uncogative hurricane which has an organization.

The problem with that argument is "infinite regress". It begs the question. If something is complex, then what created it is even more complex. And what created that is even more complex. And what created that  is more complex, and what created that is more complex ect ect ect absurdum.

 

An quark is more simple than an atom. An atom is more simple than a molecule. A molecule is more simple than an organism. None of those things think. But in slow uncognative steps  over long periods of time the complexity can lead to cognition, such as human life.

Cognition is merely one result of complexity, but complexity also results in non-human things.

 

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


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Renee Obsidianwords

Renee Obsidianwords wrote:

Welcome fullarmor2!

I am from Illinois as well ~ Chicagoland ~ enjoying the cold weather?  Smiling

Can you get a bit into your thought process when it comes to your lack of belief in an eternal hell? What were a few of the key issues with the eternal torment doctrine that made you start to doubt hell exists?

 

  Well first,    I started rejecting it about two years ago.   I started thinking about all the things which make eternal torment doctrine  senseless  or illogical .  But, it was not just a logical thought process that I had which caused me to change.    I just could no longer view people like that.   As hell bound. Its not right. When I view people around the World I have compassion for them. I want them to be well.  So,   its like my thinking just vomited up et doctrine and could not take it any more!     Also I recognized that an extreme concept of punishment like that is not consistent with an intelligent God of love(not easy to do when your told to just believe it, and your not suppose to understand it),  who was smart enough to create. But not intelligent enough to have an appropriate justice system?  Come on.     I would think things like "why would God create and allow humans  to be in this  problematic World  where God knew they would make mistakes,  with the intention of destroying them when they do"?!     If there is a God this is impossible.  An intelligent God would know what to expect and would have a better plan than that.    

   Now,  in addition to that I discovered that  what I had was just a theological system. And there are other ones!  I didn't have to stay  with one that makes no sense to me. A theological system  is simply how you understand/interpret the bible. AND how it all fits together.(or what ever religious book you use)   I don't believe the bible is perfect anymore.   I think it reflects the imperfect people who wrote it.   But I also believe it has the message of universal salvation running through it from Genesis to Revelation.    Thats due in part to the fact that I discovered this other theological system which understands the bible this way, but i've seen the sciptures they use, and they teach it.     Part of the reason why I embraced this way is because I think that if God is really there,  God would have a plan to ultimately help everyone.    And my  new system   uncovers   this in the bible.    And I found out that there really are hundreds of scriptures that say, in different ways,  that all people are saved.  And all the punishment scriptures are referring to temporary correction is all. Which is what you would expect from an intelligent God.    And the word "hell" is not even in the bible.   Its a mistranslation from Hebrew and Greek words which have totally differnet meanings!    Another thing I will say to folks who believe in eternal punishment is "why would God tell you to love your enemies, while God intends to roast and toast enemies forever"!?    

 


 

 

 

    

   

       


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Have fun!

Have fun!


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Do you really think that a

Do you really think that a baby popped out of a girl WITHOUT a second set of DNA contributing to her egg? Isn't it more likely that humans like the idea of purity and invented a religion with a super hero who was born of a virgin? If you do some research you will find, THE MOTIF, of avoiding the vagina via sex, is not a new MOTIF to Christianity and that prior pagans claimed their heros were born out of a pure mother.

And while we are at it. EVEN IF a man named Jesus existed, it would still not make the fantastic claims of the bible true. Most people accept that the earth isn't flat, and as such they SHOULD accept that the earth is billions of years old and was not created in 6 days.

All one could prove, and it is still debatable that a man named Jesus existed, is that a man existed, it still wouldn't make claims of magic true. You can see Superman flying around in NYC in the movies but that doesn't mean that Superman is real. It would only mean an actor playing super man was real.

I can find morality in Star Wars without believing in "The Force". I can find morals in Harry Potter without believing that boys can fly around on brooms.

WHAT makes much more sense is that humans have always had a history of projecting their own desires of super heros on the world around them. The first gods were earthy, like animals and volcanos. Later gods became polytheistic and more human, then we progressed to modern monotheism.

If you can accept that the sun is not a thinking being, which the Ancient Egyptians falsely believed for 3 thousand years as a thinking being, then you should be able to accept that there is no such thing as a magical invisible super brain, with no brain, no body, no neurons or cerebellum, floating out in the cosmos, everywhere and nowhere at the same time, meddling in the affairs of humans.

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


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        I must point

        I must point out that I don't believe in a Creator because of complexities.  I admit that no one knows because of evidence that a creator exists.  So, why do I believe in God?   That is so hard to answer that!      When I look within myself,   and I experience my own self,  the wonder of who I am in my heart and mind.  I think God is revealing  God there.    I think everyone experiences this , I mean they see similar things. A higher  consciousness than other  animals.    When you look in the mirror sorta speak,  you very well are seeing God.  If you are a child of God.   Like when you see a little bit of your parents in the mirror.

       Why do people stand out in the animal kingdom like sore thumbs?       If people are created like God as far as thinking ability, feelings, appearance,   but just on a smaller fallible scale,  then it makes sense.    People are just too different.  Why would this one only animal evolve to such a way,  standing out like a sore thumbs?  I think what we see in nature is a combination of natural processes and a  higher power.      When I add the higher power part,  I don't think thats unreasonable in light of  how amazing  we  and our World is.

 

 

 


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fullarmor2

fullarmor2 wrote:

        I must point out that I don't believe in a Creator because of complexities.  I admit that no one knows because of evidence that a creator exists.  So, why do I believe in God?   That is so hard to answer that!      When I look within myself,   and I experience my own self,  the wonder of who I am in my heart and mind.  I think God is revealing  God there.    I think everyone experiences this , I mean they see similar things. A higher  consciousness than other  animals.    When you look in the mirror sorta speak,  you very well are seeing God.  If you are a child of God.   Like when you see a little bit of your parents in the mirror.

       Why do people stand out in the animal kingdom like sore thumbs?       If people are created like God as far as thinking ability, feelings, appearance,   but just on a smaller fallible scale,  then it makes sense.    People are just too different.  Why would this one only animal evolve to such a way,  standing out like a sore thumbs?  I think what we see in nature is a combination of natural processes and a  higher power.      When I add the higher power part,  I don't think thats unreasonable in light of  how amazing the universe is.  

 

No it is not hard to answer why you believe what you do. You are merely answering that way because of your history and your own wishful thinking. You believe in a god merely because the idea appeals to you.

Please understand that many here, including me, used to have those same intense emotions that gave us a false sense of a god based on our mundane human psychology of wanting a placebo to fill in the gap.

Seriously. Do you really want to believe that a brain, with no brain, with magic powers, floats out there everywhere and nowhere at the same time? Does that seriously make sense to you? Or could it just be the idea appeals to you?

"Why would our species evolve to believe such things if there was no god?" BECAUSE WE ARE FLAWED!

Our species evolved to seek out patterns. OUR FLAW is that we didn't have the answers from the start and more often than not we insert a bad guess into the gap. Our evolutionary hiccup is that we default to gap answers more than we actually seek answers. We are slowly outgrowing that attitude, but not fast enough as far as I am concerned.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


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    What if someone has

    What if someone has had a prayer based relationship with God for years. How do you undo that?    That causes  a person to have a very deep conviction or for their belief to be ingrained powerfully.

   Thats why when I change my belief,  I always start with the  premise  of God,  and then proceed to make sense from there.


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Quote:When I add the higher

Quote:
When I add the higher power part,  I don't think thats unreasonable in light of  how amazing the universe is. 

Again, you are allowing your natural sense of awe get to you. If you think the universe is the result of a thinking being with us in mind, then go take a space walk and take your helmet off.

YES our universe is amazing, but their is FAR MORE DISTRUCTION than production. Are you also going to atribute cancer and flesh eating bacteria to your "higher power"? How about child rape or child cancer? How about 200,000 men, women and CHILDREN drowning in a tsunami?

If you want to claim a "higher power" you can. But if we are going by that "higher power" model for argument's sake only, I wouldn't want to worship such a prick. That would be like thanking Kim Jong Ill for not killing me because I didn't question him.

If you were my kid, and I put you in a house full of razor blades, broken glass, asbestos and ecoli, would you thank me, or be pissed at me?

HERE IS REALITY. From the time we are born, to the time we die we are subject to all sorts of risk, from crime, to disease, war or disaster or even a car accident, much less the same risk that WILL eventually get us that got the dinosaurs. Something WILL eventually get us as individuals,  AND eventually as a species.

When you insert a "higher power" into the mix it becomes a horrible and repugnant thought. That something that COULD prevent harm to us sits with folded arms like a child playing with army men in a sandbox.

WHEN you take out fictional super heros as an explanation it frees you up, not to live forever, but to look for ways to maximize the good and minimize the harm by OBSERVING nature, both the things that benefit us, and the things that harm us.

I find it demeaning to reality to fill in the gap with such petty concepts as a magical being. Just like you would find it demeaning to Edison if someone claimed that Thor made the electricity for his light bulb.

 

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      This came up in

      This came up in free will vs sovereignty  debates.     Isn't the argument from evil counterbalanced when we talk about all the good things, or the argument from  goodness I guess its called?

 

      If a God is real,  why do you think God would be allowing this temporary mess you talked about,  wouldn't God have something positive in store for everyone after all this?   As sort of reward I guess.

     My current belief system would say that all that stuff is only allowed by God  for a temporary time down here.  And  in the next life,  it will be all good.   And after having gone through all this, we will have a contrast, which will make paradise sweeter.    Contrasts are important right?   You get what I'm saying.  You can't know many things unless you know the opposite of the thing.      And you can say that the fact that our life is temporary shows that God does not want us in this.  

      

  


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fullarmor2 wrote:    What

fullarmor2 wrote:

    What if someone has had a prayer based relationship with God for years. How do you undo that?    That causes  a person to have a very deep conviction or for their belief to be ingrained powerfully.

   Thats why when I change my belief,  I always start with the  premise  of God,  and then proceed to make sense from there.

Which is the mistake YOU make, and believers in Allah make, and believers in Vishnu make, and the same mistake that the Egyptians in the sun god ra made.

 

YOU START with a naked assertion. A history of making claims is only a history of making claims. A history of passing down claims to the next generation is only evidence of successful marketing.

Quote:
I always start with the  premise  of God,

BINGO, and that's were your problem is. You can like the idea all you want. You can claim the idea all you want. What you don't have, that no person in human history has had, is evidence of an immaterial, magical super brain, be it the Sun, a volcano or your god. I'd suggest you think about why you reject other people's deity claims to understand why we reject your claim as well.

What is wrong with "WHAT" being the answer and not a "who"? Has god belief stopped cancer, or desease or war or crime in our species history? No.

But when we left the caves and were no longer afraid of the shadows, when we challenged accepted norms, we came up with things like neurology, computers, space travel. And all those things exist without a particular label or god required to accomplish those advancements.

 

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     I agree that it is

     I agree that it is a problem in the sense that you cannot prove God.   And as you said,    we do not see those problems in the World dealt with.

  What if its suppose to be a mess for a temporary period of time?      

  What if our not being able to know  evidentially,   is preplanned by God?

  I know that "what if" questions are a joke.   But since I'm talking "what if"  regarding a possible creator thats different because  things could very well have a creator.

     Let me remind you that my belief  system is radically different from "mainstream religion"  .  As you said above yourself,  "universalists are more open minded" .    Thats part of what attracted me to it.   We have this deity who we believe is going to help everybody.  Isn't that what you would expect if a  creator exists?  The only seeming problem is,   the delay of it.  The time of our lives here with all the suffering and pain thats possible.   But couldn't a God with good intentions for ALL have a reason for allowing this temporary corruption in our World?   

    Its strange how I think you all are right as opposed to what I use to think as a fundy.    All your saying is is that we have no proof.  Your not saying no creator exists. Your saying we don't know and have no reason to think one does.    And if a creator is there,  he/she/it would have no problem with you. Because you are making true statements !   

   The problem is we have a bunch of people branching off from the God premise into a zillion different directions, some of which are out right dangerous. Such as radical terrorists who want to use nukes.

  But this is clearly out of anybodies control.  And would be just part of  the over all corruption / vanity that Paul  spoke of.    He said  "the creation is subjected to vanity, not willingly,  but by God, but also in HOPE  ".      The false religious mess I think, is just lumped in with everything else in the World that is bad.   Its the same junk. Or vanity, like Paul said.


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Quote: What if its suppose

Quote:
What if its suppose to be a mess for a temporary period of time?

IT IS a mess and it IS temporary, but there is no life after death just as you didn't have a life before birth. Can you imagine what life was like before you were born? NO, so why would life be any different after you die?

Why not stop insisting that that reality has to have a magical interviener and accept that we are merely a product of nature and are products of evolution and luck. Our luck will run out, but this is it, this is all there is and that doesn't frighten me in the least.

What is so horrible about accepting a finite existence? When your flowers die or a tree dies you don't pray that they go to a plant heaven or hell. Plants and trees are temporary and so is the sun and our planet. Get over it. There is no purpose to human existence other than what we as individuals make it. But we are not special to the planet or the universe. Those things will exist long after we go extinct, and even those things as well, will die too.

Belief in god only exists because of human flawed thinking. God(s) did not exist 4 billion years ago and they wont exist when the sun expands and fries our planet, but our species won't even make it that far.

Instead of making up gods because you like warm fuzzy feelings, accept reality and your finite existence and work toward better thinking and better logic. I find the world much more awe inspiring now than I did when I did believe in a fictional friend in the sky.

The sun's formation, a black hole, a gamma ray are all amazing, but also destructive. I find a kitten awe inspiring too. But I don't let my brains fall out because I find them cute. I also look at a lion and tiger and a house cat and it is blatantly obvious that there is no magic in their common ancestors.

 

 

 

 

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      If anyone is

      If anyone is interested in hearing more  about universal hope, I guess I'll call it. As I am interested in your perspective.    Or to talk about why you think its just as wrong as any other God belief.  Thats fine , I respect your points.     Here is my other forum I am on.  And yes, there are people there who are better at this than me !         http://www.tentmaker.org/forum/


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Quote: All your saying is is

Quote:
All your saying is is that we have no proof.  Your not saying no creator exists.

Yes and no.

Yes I am saying that NO CURRENT CLAIM OR PAST CLAIM IS CREDIBLE. I'll call bullshit on anything past or present, polytheistic or monotheistic, or even generic. We know what a human brain looks like. We know what neurons are. What we don't have is evidence of an invisible version of such. You don't have evidence that Vishnu doesn't exist. You don't have evidence that Allah doesn't exist. But how much weight do you give those claims just because someone utters them.

But as far as the future, who knows? I think proving a "god" would require scraping all current and past claims and starting from scratch. But that is pointless because you would still have to start with a naked assertion. So I would default to a "technical" admission of "I don't know" as far as the future, but I am not going to hold my breath waiting for that "evidence".

If I claim that I have an invisible snarfwidget, you have no way of disproving it. But you don't dwell on that. So unless I come up with evidence for this invisible snarfwidget, only a fool would say, "Yea it could be possible". 

"All things are possible" is the core flaw of thinking of humans. Uttering a claim is not the same as demonstrating the credibility of a claim. The concept of any possibility of an invisible non-material super brain is absurd. So as it stands now, I take the default position of no, currently from our understanding of what material constitutes a brain capable of thought, combined with what we know about how brains work, and what we know about the history of humans making bad claims, when you take into account the totality of all this, no, a god cannot exist under our current understanding of nature.

 

AND AGAIN, you keep inserting "creator" as the default position. A hurricane is "created" by climate, water temperature and environment. Those things under certain situations "create" a hurricane. Why do you insist that life, or the universe has to have a humanoid creator with magical powers? If you can accept that a hurricane is natural, then an atom an quark are no more dependent on magic than a hurricane is, thus evolution AND our universe CAN be a product of a WHAT and that there is no need for a who.

Stop inserting a "who" in the gap. That causes more problems from a logical standpoint than it is worth. Complexity is an emergent property, not a default starting point. AGAIN, go look up "infinite regress" to understand the mistake in your logic. I would also recommend "Occam's Razor". And the fallacy of Pascal's wager".......just as a few things to help you understand where we are coming from.  And Bentrand Russell's teapot.

 

 

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I don't think "hope" is so

I don't think "hope" is so great. The benefits are always in the future and never in the present.

There are twists of time and space, of vision and reality, which only a dreamer can divine
H.P. Lovecraft


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I think all thats true

I think all thats true regarding  natural things.  Everything will die  or become more corrupt.  But,  I think we have spirits or a life that will never die. And will be taken care of by an intelligent God at the end of the day.       


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fullarmor2

fullarmor2 wrote:

          And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  

You pretty much pick and choose what you want from the bible. But, the bible was kind of designed to be that way. If you would only believe in a god if was all loving, you can pick just those verses. If you were motivated by fear and hell, you can just pick those verses. Jesus himself talks often of the torture of hell.

Universalism makes the most convenience for you. God is just what's convenient.

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


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  Now,  when you talk

  Now,  when you talk about different  God names,  those all just mean God to different groups of people.  For example,  Alah just means god in Arabic .    Don't they all or most just think they are talking about a creator?


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fullarmor2 wrote:I think all

fullarmor2 wrote:

I think all thats true regarding  natural things.  Everything will die  or become more corrupt.  But,  I think we have spirits or a life that will never die. And will be taken care of by an intelligent God at the end of the day.       

Why? I find that absurd and horrible. What would you do with eternity without getting board? What would be the point of this utopia? What about the people who don't make it into your club? Will you sit up their with dad while knowing that some if not the majority of the 6 billion people will be non-existant and not with you? What would god need with 6 billion friends? If he doesn't need 6 billion friends, what happens to the ones he doesn't want or need?

You again, are allowing your sense of awe get to you. I find the concept of living after I am dead not only absurd, but horrible. I don't want to belong to a club that makes so much waste just so I can kiss somebody's butt. And the thought of being a puppet only to have my bad memories in this life errassed when I get to heaven would be treating me like property, like a computer who's owner reformats the hard drive.

You merely have a bad case of the warm fuzzies.

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EXC wrote:fullarmor2

EXC wrote:

fullarmor2 wrote:

          And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  

You pretty much pick and choose what you want from the bible. But, the bible was kind of designed to be that way. If you would only believe in a god if was all loving, you can pick just those verses. If you were motivated by fear and hell, you can just pick those verses. Jesus himself talks often of the torture of hell.

Universalism makes the most convenience for you. God is just what's convenient.

   No, in Universalism you don't pick and choose.   Its an entirly different system of theology.  How the bible is understood and how it all fits together. They have good explanations for all those hell verses you mentioned.   They don't just ignore them.  They explain all those types of passages.  Its the most logical way of  understanding the bible from a religious perspective,  that I have ever seen.   Brian was right.  Universalist are open minded,   I'll go further,  they are way more reasonable than mainstream religion or anything I've seen that is religious. You know? 


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fullarmor2 wrote:  Now, 

fullarmor2 wrote:

  Now,  when you talk about different  God names,  those all just mean God to different groups of people.  For example,  Alah just means god in Arabic .    Don't they all or most just think they are talking about a creator?

Way to miss the point again.

Give a (god) (God) any name you still have to justify a non-material brain with super powers. You might as well believe that Thor makes lighting.

I find it immoral to do something just because you think someone might be watching. I think better morality isl to do things because they are the right thing to do, not because you are being bribed with a cookie or threatened with a spanking.

Why would you want a "creator". Why not just accept that you are a product of sex and a sperm and an egg? You accept that the computer you are typing on isn't run by a magical hamster spinning a wheel inside the tower.

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Brian37 wrote:fullarmor2

Brian37 wrote:

fullarmor2 wrote:

I think all thats true regarding  natural things.  Everything will die  or become more corrupt.  But,  I think we have spirits or a life that will never die. And will be taken care of by an intelligent God at the end of the day.       

Why? I find that absurd and horrible. What would you do with eternity without getting board? What would be the point of this utopia? What about the people who don't make it into your club? Will you sit up their with dad while knowing that some if not the majority of the 6 billion people will be non-existant and not with you? What would god need with 6 billion friends? If he doesn't need 6 billion friends, what happens to the ones he doesn't want or need?

You again, are allowing your sense of awe get to you. I find the concept of living after I am dead not only absurd, but horrible. I don't want to belong to a club that makes so much waste just so I can kiss somebody's butt. And the thought of being a puppet only to have my bad memories in this life errassed when I get to heaven would be treating me like property, like a computer who's owner reformats the hard drive.

You merely have a bad case of the warm fuzzies.

       We think it will be a new and better World.  And that no one will be excluded.  Although people will go through correction.  And because people will see that God is really cool person,  not as was presented by false religion,   people will be pleasantly surprised.   It will all be real , not relgious.   I think religion has everydodies image of what a creator/god  would be,  distorted.  I think thats why you think it would be horrible.  What if God REALLY is love?

Because he/she/it does not do something now,  does that mean God is not there?  Not nescesarily I don't think. He/she/it  might have a plan we don't understand yet.


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fullarmor2 wrote:EXC

fullarmor2 wrote:

EXC wrote:

fullarmor2 wrote:

          And if a Creator exists,  universalism makes the most sense to me.  

You pretty much pick and choose what you want from the bible. But, the bible was kind of designed to be that way. If you would only believe in a god if was all loving, you can pick just those verses. If you were motivated by fear and hell, you can just pick those verses. Jesus himself talks often of the torture of hell.

Universalism makes the most convenience for you. God is just what's convenient.

   No, in Universalism you don't pick and choose.   Its an entirly different system of theology.  How the bible is understood and how it all fits together. They have good explanations for all those hell verses you mentioned.   They don't just ignore them.  They explain all those types of passages.  Its the most logical way of  understanding the bible from a religious perspective,  that I have ever seen.   Brian was right.  Universalist are open minded,   I'll go further,  they are way more reasonable than mainstream religion or anything I've seen that is religious. You know? 

If you were talking about me complementing Universalists on being non-judgmental, I agree. BUT AGAIN, just because I don't judge individuals doesn't mean I don't judge the claims that they utter. I can like a person, but not like everything they say.

It still has nothing to do with providing evidence for the words that come out of someone's mouth, ON ANY SUBJECT.

 

FOR EXAMPLE

 

If I claimed, "The Lions won the Super Bowl last year"

 

Would that be an issue of liking someone or not liking someone, or would it strictly have to do with the credibility of that claim?

We know that the Steelers won so that would make the above claim invalid and absurd, regardless of liking or disliking the person making the claim.

So again, we see you doing here, what we see other people, left, right and inbetween of all religions making the same mistake. It has nothing do do with YOU the person.

Universalists are not fundies, but so what? What does that have to do with claims of invisible super brains with magical powers? I like Universalists, but not because they believe something I find to be absurd. I like them because they are, like you said, open minded, not because I always agree with them.

 

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fullarmor2 wrote:No, in

fullarmor2 wrote:

No, in Universalism you don't pick and choose.

But you picked Universalism because it's what's convenient for you. You weren't motivated by a god of fear and punishment, so you picked Universalism because it can conveniently explain away those nasty verses that talk about eternal torment. Right?

So religion is just convenience. You'll become an atheist if you find this to be more convenient. Convenience is everyone's god, myself included. Why continue to pretend anything else?

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


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 Good points.   Brian, I

 Good points.   Brian, I didn't mean to make it sound like you agree. I just liked your observation regarding Universalists and I agree from experience.  I know that even if they are most reasonable compaired to other religions, that does not make them right.  But it is impressive to me.


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fullarmor2 wrote: Good

fullarmor2 wrote:

 Good points.   Brian, I didn't mean to make it sound like you agree. I just liked your observation regarding Universalists and I agree from experience.  I know that even if they are most reasonable compaired to other religions, that does not make them right.  But it is impressive to me.

Glad that you agree with me. So lets move on.

YOU, there is a God.

ME. No there isn't, there are merely people who like the idea of a god.

Here again is a list I think you should know, even theologians know this stuff. I don't think they debunk this list very well at all, but they have more than I have seen from you in this thread.

1. Infinite regress

2. Occam's Razor

3. Fallacy of Pascal's wager

4. Bentrand Russell's teapot

forgot this also

5. Law of probibility

For starters..............................

........................................................

Go work on understanding those in that list. Even if you don't agree with me after reading them, you should have an understanding of where atheists come from.

 

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EXC wrote:fullarmor2

EXC wrote:

fullarmor2 wrote:

No, in Universalism you don't pick and choose.

But you picked Universalism because it's what's convenient for you. You weren't motivated by a god of fear and punishment, so you picked Universalism because it can conveniently explain away those nasty verses that talk about eternal torment. Right?

So religion is just convenience. You'll become an atheist if you find this to be more convenient. Convenience is everyone's god, myself included. Why continue to pretend anything else?

    I didn't really pick it.   Two years ago I stopped believing in eternal torment,  and that was before I knew there was Universalism.   Then I not only found out about it,  but that they have been around since Jesus walked the earth.  Who we think was a Universalist. He said " if I be lifted up, I will draw ALL people unto me".   Not some.   Anyway,   I found out they have been around all through the "church history".  Just a minority. They were even killed for not believing in eternal torment!   As heretics.     A new statment I have now is,  "if believeing that God is loving enough, powerful enough, and wise enough, to save all,   makes me a heretic,  sign me up"!     By the way,  I don't believe anybody operating in sincerity in their heart is a heretic.   I don't even know if that word can be applied to anybody. I don't think so.


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fullarmor2 wrote: Good

fullarmor2 wrote:

 Good points.   Brian, I didn't mean to make it sound like you agree. I just liked your observation regarding Universalists and I agree from experience.  I know that even if they are most reasonable compaired to other religions, that does not make them right.  But it is impressive to me.

Being nice is no more impressive than being mean. Both are natural human actions.

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 I agree, also its all

 I agree, also its all about being sincere in your heart.  Or trying your best.  And since we are human,   junk is going to happen also in the process . We will make mistakes.  

  We once had someone  from your perspective as a member at our Tentmaker forum.  For a long time.   And this dude was good. Let me tell you. I wouldn't be surprised if he was Christopher Hitchins or somebody.    He maintained his position the whole time and left after the site revamped everything, you know.  Trimmed up all the threads and what not.   He was always respectful and what not.  His avatar name was  Transponder .


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EXC wrote:fullarmor2

EXC wrote:

fullarmor2 wrote:

No, in Universalism you don't pick and choose.

But you picked Universalism because it's what's convenient for you. You weren't motivated by a god of fear and punishment, so you picked Universalism because it can conveniently explain away those nasty verses that talk about eternal torment. Right?

So religion is just convenience. You'll become an atheist if you find this to be more convenient. Convenience is everyone's god, myself included. Why continue to pretend anything else?

I don't know if I'd be arguing semantics with you, but I don't like this analogy. I agree that believers have a placebo out of convenience. But I think good use of logic and method is not convenient, but a requirement, even when inconvenient.

I am not an atheist out of convenience, but because logic dictates it.

 

 

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fullarmor2 wrote: I agree,

fullarmor2 wrote:

 I agree, also its all about being sincere in your heart.  Or trying your best.  And since we are human,   junk is going to happen also in the process . We will make mistakes.

NO it is not about "being sincere". That is a bad and lazy intellectual path to take. Every human is capable of being sincere, but that has nothing to do with pragmatically insuring through good method, the ability to demonstrate what you are "sincere" about. Being "sincere" only means you are "sincere".

"Sincerity" got 3,000 people murdered on 9/11. "Sincerity" got 6 million Jews slaughtered because Hitler effectively played upon German emotions and religion. "Sincerity" got millions murdered under Stalin. "Sincerity" is what the Imams in Iran have in keeping their oppressive theocracy.

The only pragmatic virtue in life is the ability to admit when one is wrong, the rest is nothing but egotism. You can be "sincere" AND wrong. Just like the Egyptians were sincere in believing that the sun was a god. They "sincerely" got it wrong.

Being wrong is not the worst thing in the world, it is how we learn. Humans once "sincerely" thought the earth was flat. I am glad there were people who thought enough about defending reality to buck the insecurities of "sincerely" wrong people.

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     I exaggerated 

     I exaggerated  when I said its all about that.  its just important.  Your right.   The most important thing is being right.        Now I never made a decision to believe in God.  I grew up that way, as you folks say some of you did.     So what it is, is I'm not sure its right for me to decide I'm not going to believe. ( And I understand thats not anybodies intention here, to change the other,  although thats ok if you think it would be a positive thing I guess. . We are just talking.)        Because I think its not unreasonable to think a higher power was involved.     I did drop many of my mainstream beliefs.  I saw reason to.  I  saw no support for them or worse.  AS far as my belief in God's existence, which is one of the many religious beliefs I had, thats different,  I view God as  the creator,  and that can be presented as a reasonable belief.  Unlike eternal torment.  I stopped believing that because I realized it nuts.   That didn't happen regarding my God , in general as creator,  belief.  You know?

 

  I


Brian37
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fullarmor2 wrote:     I

fullarmor2 wrote:

     I exaggerated  when I said its all about that.  its just important.  Your right.   The most important thing is being right.        Now I never made a decision to believe in God.  I grew up that way, as you folks say some of you did.     So what it is, is I'm not sure its right for me to decide I'm not going to believe. ( And I understand thats not anybodies intention here, to change the other,  although thats ok if you think it would be a positive thing I guess. . We are just talking.)        Because I think its not unreasonable to think a higher power was involved.     I did drop many of my mainstream beliefs.  I saw reason to.  I  saw no support for them or worse.  AS far as my belief in God's existence, which is one of the many religious beliefs I had, thats different,  I view God as  the creator,  and that can be presented as a reasonable belief.  Unlike eternal torment.  I stopped believing that because I realized it nuts.   That didn't happen regarding my God , in general as creator,  belief.  You know?

 

  I

Once again, do not over simplify things to a cliche. EVERYONE, you and I both think we god it right. It is not about being right it is about insuring method and quality control.

"Bing right" is a statement of emotion.

Miosis, and entropy are scientific discoveries that were found through the importance of filtering out bias and going where the evidence leads even when that evidence doesn't go with what you thought was right.

QUALITY control in method, and the ability to accept when you got it wrong. It is not about being right.

Do not confuse position with method, they are not the same thing.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


fullarmor2
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        Science does

        Science does not disprove a God/creator though.   And some scientists  agree that the idea of a creator is not unreasonable.

Don't you think its possible to make it work in an intelligent manner?   Without hurting nobody ?  Some scientists believe in a creator for example.

    Transponder use to ask me how I get from there to  my christian perspective though.   Thats a good question.    But I'm not say all of Christianity is right.   Truth is where you find it.  I'm finding some here on this forum.  I'm sure it can be found in a whole host of places.      Maybe there is only no justification for going past being a deist to religion,   and being a deist  alone is fine and reasonable.  Without religion.