The Answer to the Atheist vs. Theist phenomena

guest123
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The Answer to the Atheist vs. Theist phenomena

After all of the discussion I have had with several folks here at rational response, and after reading some of the material presented by this cite and written in these discussion boards, I have discovered the reason for such a great division among both atheists and theists.

 The funny thing is, it's not much of a reason, and yet it makes all the difference.  I have often seen and heard references to the Matrix trilogy and it's philosophy on this cite, and an example from the first movie suits my epiphany quite well.  When Neo first meets Morpheus, they discuss the situation and the definition of the Matrix.  After explaining just where Neo stands in respect to everything, Morpheus clears up the entire atheist vs theist, democrat vs republican, right vs wrong, red vs blue spectical.

Morpheus offers Neo two pills, a red pill and a blue pill.  He explains what each pill does, and then holds them out before Neo.  You see, Morpheus offers Neo a choice.  Neo could choose to ignore the problems of the world and the Matrix, or he could choose to save the world.  Regardless of what the choices were, Morpheus offered Neo two options, and Neo made a choice.

God offers us a choice as well.  That's correct, I said God offers us a choice.  I choose to believe that God exists and that the Bible is the inspired Word of God.  We read in the Bible in Joshua 24:15:

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve...

                                                                    ...but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

Choice.  We all make choices.  Whether or not we understand the circumstances of all the choices we make, we must be willing to accept the consequences for our actions.  But regardless, we must at least try to respect each other as human beings, and if we are sincere, we must teach with love our beliefs by which we have chosen to live our lives.


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What about when God hardens

What about when God hardens peoples hearts so they can't make a choice and then kills them anyway like in Exodus 7?  Where is the choice there?

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guest123 wrote: After all

guest123 wrote:
After all of the discussion I have had with several folks here at rational response, and after reading some of the material presented by this cite and written in these discussion boards, I have discovered the reason for such a great division among both atheists and theists.

The funny thing is, it's not much of a reason, and yet it makes all the difference. I have often seen and heard references to the Matrix trilogy and it's philosophy on this cite, and an example from the first movie suits my epiphany quite well. When Neo first meets Morpheus, they discuss the situation and the definition of the Matrix. After explaining just where Neo stands in respect to everything, Morpheus clears up the entire atheist vs theist, democrat vs republican, right vs wrong, red vs blue spectical.

Morpheus offers Neo two pills, a red pill and a blue pill. He explains what each pill does, and then holds them out before Neo. You see, Morpheus offers Neo a choice. Neo could choose to ignore the problems of the world and the Matrix, or he could choose to save the world. Regardless of what the choices were, Morpheus offered Neo two options, and Neo made a choice.


Right off I find it interesting that you choose a movie(fiction) to explain your argument. It is however similar to “Plato's Allegory of the Cave and The Brain in a Vat thought experiment” so I’ll keep reading.

Quote:
God offers us a choice as well. That's correct, I said God offers us a choice. I choose to believe that God exists and that the Bible is the inspired Word of God.

Big flaw. We do not choose to find something true or false unless we are being dishonest. I’m not implying that you are, but if I were to try to believe I would be acting dishonest to myself.

Quote:
We read in the Bible in Joshua 24:15:

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve...

...but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

You kind of left out some important parts of that quote...

Joshua is talking to a group of people and trying to get them to follow “the Lord” and not “the foreign gods.” After your quote he goes into how god is jealous and does not forgive transgressions or sins.

To me he is just trying to convert people with fear...

Quote:
Choice. We all make choices. Whether or not we understand the circumstances of all the choices we make, we must be willing to accept the consequences for our actions.

If by actions you mean something physical I don’t think thinking is in the same category...

Quote:
But regardless, we must at least try to respect each other as human beings, and if we are sincere, we must teach with love our beliefs by which we have chosen to live our lives.

I choose reason over faith because faith is based on feelings and logic makes sense.


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Actually when you think

Actually when you think about it, it's not our choice whether we believe in him or not.

 

He provides the evidence, and he makes up in such a way that we will accept or reject the evidence.

It's all up to him. 

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The Matrix!? Neo was... oh

The Matrix!? Neo was... oh my gosh, it all makes sense now.....
I'm converted!


Okay, seriously, your analogy is flawed. It's not 2 pills, "believe" or "don't believe".
It's like one of those full jars for those contests where you have to guess the correct number of jelly beans.

It's a fucking Bertie Bott's & Jellybelly orgy in there and they're all different gods and goddesses.
You picked.... Watermelon? WRONG, burn in hell.
The correct answer was Lemon Cream.... play again, oh wait, you can't, you're dead.
Eye-wink


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The funniest thing is that

The funniest thing is that I'm sure that an atheist (either on here or atheistforums.com) used the "Red Pill/Blue Pill" analogy on how theists like it in their irrational bubble and don't want to see the truth! Smiling


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Strafio wrote: The funniest

Strafio wrote:
The funniest thing is that I'm sure that an atheist (either on here or atheistforums.com) used the "Red Pill/Blue Pill" analogy on how theists like it in their irrational bubble and don't want to see the truth! Smiling

Yes, I've seen that elsewhere too 9perhaps the same place?).

While I was reading the OP, I was actually hoping that guest123 had actually discovered something interesting, and something like strafio's point was on my mind.  I might put the red pill/blue pill thing in more context (and yes, it is a lot like Plato's cave analogy).

 You ultimately have the choice between looking at the world as best as it can be explained using empirical, rational, and logical methods.  Or, you can use metaphorical language to understand the world in poetic terms, understanding taht pure objectivity and perfect knowledge are impossible, and all we are doing is living in an illusion anyway, so why not embrace it.  This dichotomy pops up in a number of places throughout philosophy, and one is debates in the philosophy of science.  

 The paper I just linked you to is one I wrote in graduate school about the divide between realism and what's often called "anti-realism" but is also referred to as constructionism.  It will give you a little bit about the distinction, as well as some thought I had on the subject (which have evolved somewhat since).

 The thing sabou tthe pill here is whether we are trying to view the world as it really is or to see the world as essentially unknowable, and realize that the descriptions we have are essentially metaphorical.  I don't think many atheists would object if someone said that God is a metaphor, or taht he actually exists, but only in our mnds (perhaps collectively).  A realist will respond asking "ok, but does God really exist? For the anti-realist, this question does not even make sense.

This, I think, is one interpretation of the Matrix situation, as well as Plato's analogy.   But the further fact is that no matter which you choose, the proposition of God is never any more than a metaphor; that is, it is until evidence is provided to the contrary.

Saying God gives us the choice is the ultimate begged question.

 Shaun

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Belief is not a choice.

Guest123 posts the following:

Joshua 24:15:

"And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve..."

 1.  Guest assumes that belief is a choice based not on philosophical inquiry and rational means, but based on an obscure biblical passage.  He assumes this is the word of God, and is hence, infallible.

2.  This is unpersuasive to an atheist who does not accept the infallibility or wisdom of the Bible.  Every claim in the Bible must be tested with rational means.  The claims must stand on their own as being truthful outside of the Bible's authority.

3.  That said, let's analyze the claim, "It is your choice to be a Christian or an atheist."

I think that the above claim is false.  Truly volitional choices are not mental states.  And belief is a mental state.  Choosing to "accept Jesus" or be an atheist is not analagous to choosing a Reuben or a Club sandwich at a deli.  I agree that one can choose to read the bible, go to church, and read lots of Christian literature to allow Christians to persuade him.  But you cannot choose to believe something is true if you don't.  You cannot choose to believe 2+2=5 just as I cannot choose to believe in your God.  I have done a LOT of reading.  A great deal for both sides, and my belief is not a product of choice, it is a product of rational thought processes.  That is, you expose yourself to information, and then your brain (not your volitional module) makes up your mind for you.  Your sense of reason is like your sense of sight.  While both are fallible, you cannot choose to see something with your eyes that is not projecting light on your retina.  The same thing with beliefs and your "belief module" in the brain.

 4.  You have made a grave error in assuming that the red vs. blue pill analogy is an allegory for choosing atheism or Christianity.  Quite the opposite.

 I'm going to get the actual script of that scene and show you...

Morpheus: At last. Welcome, Neo. As you no doubt have guessed, I am Morpheus.
Neo: It's an honor to meet you.
Morpheus: No, the honor is mine. Please, come. Sit down. I imagine that right now you're feeling a bit like Alice, tumbling down the rabbit hole? Hm?
Neo: You could say that.
Morpheus: I can see it in your eyes. You have the look of a man who accepts what he sees because he is expecting to wake up. Ironically, this is not far from the truth. Do you believe in fate, Neo?
Neo: No.
Morpheus: Why not?
Neo: Because I don't like the idea that I'm not in control of my life.
Morpheus: I know exactly what you mean. Let me tell you why you're here. You're here because you know something. What you know you can't explain. But you feel it. You've felt it your entire life. That there's something wrong with the world. You don't know what it is but it's there, like a splinter in your mind driving you mad. It is this feeling that has brought you to me. Do you know what I'm talking about?
Neo: The Matrix?
Morpheus: Do you want to know what IT is? The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us, even now in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work, when you go to church, when you pay your taxes. It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.
Neo: What truth?
Morpheus: That you are a slave, Neo. Like everyone else you were born into bondage, born into a prison that you cannot smell or taste or touch. A prison for your mind.... Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself. This is your last chance. After this there is no turning back. You take the blue pill, the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.... Remember, all I'm offering is the truth, nothing more....

 

Now, Guest123, there is a great book called, "Taking the Red Pill" that is a pop-philosophy book tying the Matrix to philosophy.  Let me quote that book:

 Peter Boettke writes: "Trinity corners Neo and whispers in his ear, "It is the question that drives us."  And she is certainly correct.  Nature has not endowed mankind with sharp teeth and claws, or thick and tough skin.  In stead, we are at the mercy of nature.  In brute struggle for survival with nature and other animals, we are one of the weaker species.  But we are endowed with the facility to reason.  This ability allows us to communicate with ohters, to cooperate with them, and to innovate in our dealings with nature (the uses of tools) and others (the relationships we form).  It is our capacity to question and learn through both abstract deduction and experience that empowers us."

 The purpose of Morpheus' challenge with the red pill is to not merely "choose" to believe something on faith.  It is completely the opposite!  It is to open your eyes, pursue knowledge, and embrace the truth no matter how unpleasant it may seem.

If Christianity is true, and through the course of my studies I am persuaded to be Christian, I will accept it.  I study it earnestly and consider both sides.  When and if I ever do become Christian, it will not be the result of some spontaneous choice, NO, it will be a product of a LONG drawn out process to justify Christianity through reason, logic, evidence, and history.

That is what the red pill is all about.  Accepting the rational truth no matter how displeasant it may seem.  Without fear of hell.  Without fear of God.  Can you say you have truly given atheism the amount of time and thinking that we have all given to Christianity?

 My guess is that you are afraid.  You are afraid that you may lose some important things that you think you gain from Christianity.  You are afraid that you may lose friends and family, or that your social connections will be strained.  You may even be afraid that you will go to hell.

 The only thing I am truly afraid of in accepting Christianity is accepting something that is false merely because some people think it feels good.

So, Guest 123, the Matrix scene of which you speak is about two things:

1.  Embarking on a PROCESS of discovery, critical thinking, and reason to obtain the truth on ANY issue, whether it be the question of God's existence or the metabolic processes in an amoeba.

2.  Accepting the results of this process, no matter how disturbing.


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I still want to know how

I still want to know how there is a choice if God can harden peoples hearts about him..and then kill them...and those who are under their power.

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Doctoro wrote: You have

Doctoro wrote:
You have made a grave error in assuming that the red vs. blue pill analogy is an allegory for choosing atheism or Christianity.

 

The bigest problem a lot a christians seem to forget, is that there is more to theism than Xianity. They think in terms of Atheist/Christian.

That can come back to bite them in the butt. 

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Doctoro, you indeed have

Doctoro, you indeed have quite a lot to say here!  I remember having a discussion with you in one of the chatrooms as well and one thing about you that strikes me as admirable, as it does with most atheists or anti-theists, is you yearning for proof.  I respect this philosophy 100%!

In your first point, you say in response to my citation of Joshua 24:15 that I assume this is the Word of God.  My friend, you are 100% correct!  This is my belief, and you are also correct in saying this is unpersuasive to an atheist.  In 1 Timothy 3:16, Christians are told that all scripture is the inspired word of God.  Understand that this along with the rest of the Bible is where I draw my belief from, and to me as a Christian, this is proof to me.

Doctoro, although you accuse me of being "afraid" of losing things if I chose to become an atheist and the fear of this loss keeps me from even considering doing so.  My friend, as a true Christian, I suffer loss of these things every day.  My friends and I have found ourselves in heated arguments over God and over my beliefs.  You say I may be afraid to go to Hell?  Of course I am!  The most strict warnings in the Bible are given to Christians in regards to how they should act!  There is a fear of Hell but with Christ, that fear is taken away (given I follow His commandments).  The result of not following his commandments (Hell) is what drives me to live my life the way He has commanded me to, and trust me my friends, once you've found the way, it makes life so much easier Eye-wink.

God reveals in His word in 1 John 2:15 that we are "Not to love the world, nor the things in the world."  This command is quite restricting!  The things of the world, as listed in the following verse (2:16) are the lust of the flesh, lust of the eye, and the pride of life.  This covers a broad scale of activities, and by trying my hardest to follow this command, I have separated myself from many loved ones.  However, I have found myself among brothers and sisters in Christ that encourage me beyond any "friend" the world has yet to offer.

I as well have done extensive research doctoro, and I have chosen to have faith in God.  As I explained before in another thread, my faith is not the faith of a Lutheran, a Catholic, a Presbyterian, a Baptist, a Jehovah's Witness, or any other fanatical denomination of Christianity.  My research has led me to one place, and that is the Bible.  I believe that it is the inspired Word of God, and as any faithful Christian should do, I base my lifestyle and my beliefs off of what it says.  I believe I am a Christian belonging to the church established on the Day of Pentecost, a true follower of Christ.

Be careful when you say it's not a matter of belief whether or not 2+2=4.  Although there will be people that will argue, "I can believe that 2+2=5!" this is irrational.  2+2=4 is a rational statement based on rational mathematical principles.  My point is, we must be careful where we place our faith!  Math is something physical, something we can see.  Faith is belief in that which cannot be seen.

So in response to this, I will pose a question to anyone here (doctoro primarily).  What happens when we die?  I believe in God and Christ because They offer to save me from this world which They will destroy.  Should I not fear this destruction?  Should I place my faith in mathematics and science, something I feel cannot save me, but if I shouldn't fear the consequence of Hell, does it even matter?

Please, explain this to me and maybe I will understand more clearly.


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Did you want to answer

Did you want to answer anybody elses questions...or..did you just want to dodge them?


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guest123 wrote:

With the matrix, you end up into infinite regress.

guest123 wrote:
My friend, as a true Christian, I suffer loss of these things every day
That's not our problem, now your talking about the matrix.

The problem then is that if it works in life but not in philosophy then one might say it is philosophy that has a problem and not life.

You claim that it is not possible on a logical level to rule out that we have been in the matrix the whole time, right?

Ok, so assuming that we wake up tomorrow and we find evidence or indications that there has been some form of matrix deceiving us to believe what was real really isn't. Then what stops us from concluding that it is possible that this matrix which we now believe is deceiving us is in fact not real either but there is a matrix matrix that makes it appear so? Ad infinitum!

So, yeah, I will claim it is logically impossible to ever claim that we live in a matrix with specific features and if it is logically impossible then the opposite have to be logically necessary and that is that we can never claim that a specific matrix rules our life.

Personally I would put my bet on induction though, it seems far more reasonable and makes a lot more sense but that's just me. If philosophy cannot handle that, then screw philosophy.

God had no time to create time.


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guest123 wrote: In 1

guest123 wrote:

In 1 Timothy 3:16, Christians are told that all scripture is the inspired word of God. Understand that this along with the rest of the Bible is where I draw my belief from, and to me as a Christian, this is proof to me.

This is circular logic.  If I wrote a book that said thatt the words were inspired by God. God exists. Don't eat stinky cheese, would you believe the book was the word of God? Besides, wouldn't the verse in Timothy only refer to Timothy?  I mean, it was simply glued to the other books in th 4th century, right? So perhaps Timothy is the only one inspired by God. 

Quote:
You say I may be afraid to go to Hell? Of course I am! The most strict warnings in the Bible are given to Christians in regards to how they should act! There is a fear of Hell but with Christ, that fear is taken away (given I follow His commandments). The result of not following his commandments (Hell) is what drives me to live my life the way He has commanded me to, and trust me my friends, once you've found the way, it makes life so much easier Eye-wink.

Oh boy...can't we let Pascal rest? What if the Moslem Hell is the real Hell, because Allah is the one true God and Mohammed is his prophet? Man, will Allah be pissed when he finds you've been worshipping Jesus.  

The problem is not finding THE way, it's finding the criteria for deciding which one is right.  Yours, it seems, is circular. 

Quote:
God reveals in His word in 1 John 2:15 that we are "Not to love the world, nor the things in the world." This command is quite restricting! The things of the world, as listed in the following verse (2:16) are the lust of the flesh, lust of the eye, and the pride of life. This covers a broad scale of activities, and by trying my hardest to follow this command, I have separated myself from many loved ones. However, I have found myself among brothers and sisters in Christ that encourage me beyond any "friend" the world has yet to offer.

You are depriving your life of fullness, physical love, interaction, pleasure, and good times because of something written in an old book?  Very well, but that makes me saddened.   

Quote:
As I explained before in another thread, my faith is not the faith of a Lutheran, a Catholic, a Presbyterian, a Baptist, a Jehovah's Witness, or any other fanatical denomination of Christianity.

Why are they wrong and you right?

Quote:
My research has led me to one place, and that is the Bible. I believe that it is the inspired Word of God, and as any faithful Christian should do, I base my lifestyle and my beliefs off of what it says. I believe I am a Christian belonging to the church established on the Day of Pentecost, a true follower of Christ.

So, do you follow everything the Bible says? what about the things that contradict or the things that tell you to...oh, I don't know...stone people to death? 

Either you accept all of it--ALL OF IT--or you have to use some external criteria (like your natural sense of right/wrong, rationality, etc) to judge which things in the Bible are things you'll follow and which are (obviously!) meant to be taken figuratively. 

Quote:
So in response to this, I will pose a question to anyone here (doctoro primarily). What happens when we die? I believe in God and Christ because They offer to save me from this world which They will destroy. Should I not fear this destruction? Should I place my faith in mathematics and science, something I feel cannot save me, but if I shouldn't fear the consequence of Hell, does it even matter?

Please, explain this to me and maybe I will understand more clearly.

When we die, we cease to exist. Oblivion.  The brain/body  is where all the stuff happens; emotion, thought, dreams, etc.  When the body breaks down, these processes end.  Thus, an experience after the brain stops functioning completely (which may take a few minutes after the body dies, which will explain near-death experiences),YOU stop functioning.  You will be no more. 

Shaun 

I'll fight for a person's right to speak so long as that person will, in return, fight to allow me to challenge their opinions and ridicule them as the content of their ideas merit.


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guest123 wrote: After all

guest123 wrote:

After all of the discussion I have had with several folks here at rational response, and after reading some of the material presented by this cite and written in these discussion boards, I have discovered the reason for such a great division among both atheists and theists.

 The funny thing is, it's not much of a reason, and yet it makes all the difference.  I have often seen and heard references to the Matrix trilogy and it's philosophy on this cite, and an example from the first movie suits my epiphany quite well.  When Neo first meets Morpheus, they discuss the situation and the definition of the Matrix.  After explaining just where Neo stands in respect to everything, Morpheus clears up the entire atheist vs theist, democrat vs republican, right vs wrong, red vs blue spectical.

Morpheus offers Neo two pills, a red pill and a blue pill.  He explains what each pill does, and then holds them out before Neo.  You see, Morpheus offers Neo a choice.  Neo could choose to ignore the problems of the world and the Matrix, or he could choose to save the world.  Regardless of what the choices were, Morpheus offered Neo two options, and Neo made a choice.

God offers us a choice as well.  That's correct, I said God offers us a choice.  I choose to believe that God exists and that the Bible is the inspired Word of God.  We read in the Bible in Joshua 24:15:

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve...

                                                                    ...but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

Choice.  We all make choices.  Whether or not we understand the circumstances of all the choices we make, we must be willing to accept the consequences for our actions.  But regardless, we must at least try to respect each other as human beings, and if we are sincere, we must teach with love our beliefs by which we have chosen to live our lives.

 Your Matrix example accurately portrays the choice before us all, but you have reversed the meaning of the choices.  The choice is indeed about whether to accept fantasy and illusion as valid representations of the world, or whether to insist on a more stringent test that only accepts facts when they conform to the rules of logic and evidence. 

Theists make the first choice.  They point to the fact that there are limitations on what reason can reveal and decide on that basis that their imaginings are just as real as that which they can support with reason.  Atheists make the second choice - to accept as real only that which conforms to standards of logic and empirical evidence.

You are claiming that god offers us the choice.  Oh?  I don't seem to remember any big white guy with a beard coming down from the clouds to show me two pills.  Is that how you made your choice?

What you need to acknowledge is that you have ALREADY made the choice when you choose to believe in god without any evidence.  You have ALREADY taken the blue pill, and decided to live in the Matrix, comfortably enfolded in your illusions.

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Rook_Hawkins, I appoligize

Rook_Hawkins, I appoligize for not getting to your quesiton, or some of the others.  I will now answer in response to your question in regards to Exodus 7.

You say that God hardened people's hearts and then kills them regardless, citing Exodus 7.  There are three types of hardening: (1) hard, (2) self-hardened, (3) God-hardened.  God-hardening means "raising the difficulty, but a little reflection lightens the difficulty."  In all human conduct, there is a mysterious combination of man's choice and God's enabling.  God uses events to produce opposite effects upon different characters.  To illustrate this point, think of fire as an event.  While fire melts wax, it hardens clay.

In Exodus 7:13, it says that "Pharoah's heart was hardened, as Jehovah had spoken."  This occurs after God turned Moses' rod into a serpent.  Pharoah saw this, and his servants made their rods turn into serpents as well.  Although Moses serpent ate the other serpents, Pharoah ignored all of this after his court magicians were able to duplicate the feat, thus, his heart was hardened.  This same series of events happen in verses 22-23.  Verse 23 reveals that "Pharoah turned and went into his house, neither did he lay even this to his heart.

Pharoah did not even try to understand what was happening.  If his court magicians and sorcerers could duplicate what Moses did, he just ignored it.  This "ignoring" is "self-hardening."  God set forth an event (Moses and God's miracles) and Pharoah's reaction was ignorance.

When God brought frogs into the land of Egypt (Exodus 8.), Pharoah had a change of heart.  In verses 8-11, Pharoah says he will let God's people go.  However, in verse 15, it says that "Pharoah saw that there was respite (relief), he hardened his heart, and harkened not unto them (Moses and the Israelites).  Pharoah "hardened" his own heart when he was more impressed by the relief from the frogs than the power of God.

This process continues for several chapters, and a verse that is interesting is Exodus 10:3.  "How long wilt thou refuse to humble thyself before me?"  God told Moses and Aaron to present this question to Pharoah.  This verse (along with all it's context) shows that Pharaoh was responsible for hardening his heart.  There was always a time when he might have relented; and it was because he hardened his heart at such times, that God is said to harden him.

Pharoah (and the Egyptians that chased after Israel) could have at any time relented from the "hardening of their hearts."  God did not take away their critical thinking skills or their logic, he placed them in a difficult situation and they hardened their hearts in response to said situation.

Today, people can also "harden their hearts."  It has often been said that God has provided a nail in every episode of the whole Bible where Satan may hang his hat.  God tests people to see if they can withstand times of difficulty.

I hope this sheds some light on your question Rook_Hawkins.  Again, I appoligize for not getting to every question at once.


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guest123 wrote: God tests

guest123 wrote:

God tests people to see if they can withstand times of difficulty.

If there were a good and loving god, why would it be necessary to do this? If there were a good and loving god, there wouldn't be "times of difficulty."

As I've given the example in prior threads, this is very much like an abusive husband that beats his wife severely to see if she will love and honor him even more afterward. We all know that a person should flee as quickly as possible from anyone/anything that causes harm.

Please see the excellent post from Todangst:

http://www.rationalresponders.com/loving_parents

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server.


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One of the other differences

One of the other differences that I see in this example is that Morpheus agrees to accept Neo's choice. He probably preferred that Neo take the red pill, but it's doubtful that he would have punished him for choosing the blue.
Repeatedly on this forum I have heard that God gave us free will because he wants us to freely choose to enter communion with him. But how can this really be a free choose if he eternally damns those who choose "wrong"? Are we or are we not "allowed" to choose to reject him? 


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To kind of pull from

To kind of pull from rackitycoon's statement Morpheus didn't set up the system and the choices are willful ignorance with imprisonment or knowledge with a war for freedom. Morpheus doesn’t say that he will give him rewards or punishments and isn’t they guy who laid out the possible positive and negatives. Although Neo does follow the same sort formula Jesus and other savior heroes follow.


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1. natural world

If the outermost universe just is - the simplest explanation is that the universe we live in is that outermost universe and thus have no outer universe that simulates it. This outermost universe just is and need no explanation as to its existence.

God had no time to create time.


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Voiderest wrote: To kind of

Voiderest wrote:
To kind of pull from rackitycoon's statement Morpheus didn't set up the system and the choices are willful ignorance with imprisonment or knowledge with a war for freedom. Morpheus doesn’t say that he will give him rewards or punishments and isn’t they guy who laid out the possible positive and negatives. Although Neo does follow the same sort formula Jesus and other savior heroes follow.

I've interpreted the Matrix trilogy as being a Christian-Gnostic story.  I thought the first movie was awesome.  The second movie was not nearly as good, but at the end I thought I saw potential for some interesting commentary; specifically, I thought that the "reality" that they were in at the end was going to be another, embedded, matrix, and that (perhaps) the machines were in a Matrix of their own. Imagine the look on Neo's face whenhe realizes he's the simulation created by a simulation.  There were other interesting possibilities, but I'll not get into that here.

But when it went to route it did in the third movie, I instantly recognized the gnostic savior-myth themes, and was very disappointed.  perhaps I should watch the trilogy again, but so far I've vowed to only watch the first one ever again.   

Shaun 

I'll fight for a person's right to speak so long as that person will, in return, fight to allow me to challenge their opinions and ridicule them as the content of their ideas merit.


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Pikachu wrote: If the

Pikachu wrote:
If the outermost universe just is - the simplest explanation is that the universe we live in is that outermost universe and thus have no outer universe that simulates it. This outermost universe just is and need no explanation as to its existence.
And it was just before watching the third movie that I had an epiphany: The "outer universe" presented in the first two movies can't be the real outer universe.
Think about it, the whole situation is predicated on the notion that computers use humans for energy since the sun is blocked by a perpetually covered sky. First of all, if these machines are smart enough to create a direct neural interface with humans, why are they too stupid to make a rocket and move into the sunlight? Even if we grant them some mysterious reason, the whole thing falls apart because of entropy. Any energy that the humans give off is not being replaced by the sun. It's not enough to recirculate the proteins, something has to replace the energy expended. Therefore the outer world can't be the real one.
This leads to at least two explanations: 1) The "real" world is in fact a computer simulation (a la The Thirteenth Floor) or 2) the roles are actually switched; the "Matrix" (where he is a bit of a loser) is in fact the real world and the other is a delusion created by Neo where he is "the chosen savior" destined to free humanity.
I know, I know. That kind of thing NEVER happens....


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ShaunPhilly wrote: [But

ShaunPhilly wrote:

[But when it went to route it did in the third movie, I instantly recognized the gnostic savior-myth themes, and was very disappointed.  perhaps I should watch the trilogy again, but so far I've vowed to only watch the first one ever again.   

Shaun 

 

Agree totally.  I started to get a sinking feeling in the pit of my gut when Neo affected the sentinels outside the Matrix at the end of the second movie, but clung to hope that there would be a good explanation (like the Matrix-within-a-Matrix thing, though that would be awkward).  I knew it had all fallen apart, though, as soon as the Oracle said in the third movie that Neo was "outside time".   By the end of the movie, I was ready to puke from all the illogical, unexplained, totally gratuitous supernatural, christ-like powers.  What a disappointment.

My priest friend, on the other hand, loved it.  He (correctly) saw the whole thing as a big victory for the christian worldview.

Lazy is a word we use when someone isn't doing what we want them to do.
- Dr. Joy Brown


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I thought that there was a

I thought that there was a naturalistic explanation for it all.
The 'powers' Neo had were based on his link to the network of machines. The anomaly in the matrix left him connected to the entire system, leaving him with the ability to affect anything in the network.

 So when he pulled that trick at the end of the second movie, he was using his link to the network of machines to mess up the robots, sense programs like Smith while blinded... etc.
The Oracle always likes to put things in mystical terms.
You should've paid more attention to the Architect! Sticking out tongue


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Strafio wrote: I thought

Strafio wrote:

I thought that there was a naturalistic explanation for it all.
The 'powers' Neo had were based on his link to the network of machines. The anomaly in the matrix left him connected to the entire system, leaving him with the ability to affect anything in the network.

So when he pulled that trick at the end of the second movie, he was using his link to the network of machines to mess up the robots, sense programs like Smith while blinded... etc.
The Oracle always likes to put things in mystical terms.
You should've paid more attention to the Architect! Sticking out tongue

 

but that doesn't work at all.  Within the Matrix, the "powers" are merely neo manipulating the code, which is the basis for the construct of the illusion around him.  He literally is wired into the world around him, within the Matrix.

 When he leaves the Matrix, there is no substrate for him to be connected to the machines with.  The body of Neo in the matrix is the same illusion sa the whorld around him.  But in the real world, his body is just a physical body that is at a distance from the real machines.  This is why some of us jumped to the thought that it must have been another layer to the matrix.  when Neo was starting to get that feeling like he still had the ability to sense and manipulate the world around him, either it was because he was still in a matrix, or the writers suddenly turned the corner on us and were making a Christ-like being who, having in a sense gained God-like powers in the Matrix (his incarnation) was able to ascend and still have those powers, this time iin one of the higher levels of reality, just like the neoplaonic and gnostic cosmologies.  

 The conversation with the architect, IMO, was where the story started to lose cohesion.  

Shaun 

I'll fight for a person's right to speak so long as that person will, in return, fight to allow me to challenge their opinions and ridicule them as the content of their ideas merit.


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rackitycoon wrote:

rackitycoon wrote:
Pikachu wrote:
If the outermost universe just is - the simplest explanation is that the universe we live in is that outermost universe and thus have no outer universe that simulates it. This outermost universe just is and need no explanation as to its existence.
And it was just before watching the third movie that I had an epiphany: The "outer universe" presented in the first two movies can't be the real outer universe.
Think about it, the whole situation is predicated on the notion that computers use humans for energy since the sun is blocked by a perpetually covered sky. First of all, if these machines are smart enough to create a direct neural interface with humans, why are they too stupid to make a rocket and move into the sunlight? Even if we grant them some mysterious reason, the whole thing falls apart because of entropy. Any energy that the humans give off is not being replaced by the sun. It's not enough to recirculate the proteins, something has to replace the energy expended. Therefore the outer world can't be the real one.
This leads to at least two explanations: 1) The "real" world is in fact a computer simulation (a la The Thirteenth Floor) or 2) the roles are actually switched; the "Matrix" (where he is a bit of a loser) is in fact the real world and the other is a delusion created by Neo where he is "the chosen savior" destined to free humanity.
I know, I know. That kind of thing NEVER happens....

The matrix idea seems to be an overly complex assertion with no basis in evidence. If existence just is, then there isn't any need to come up with an elaborate simulation hypothesis. It really serves no purpose in my opinion. occam's razor applies in this case just as well as any other.

If universes can exist on a just-is basis, why can't that be the explanation for this one?

check out Nick Bostrom's: http://www.simulation-argument.com/simulation.html

God had no time to create time.


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ShaunPhilly wrote: but that

ShaunPhilly wrote:
but that doesn't work at all. Within the Matrix, the "powers" are merely neo manipulating the code, which is the basis for the construct of the illusion around him. He literally is wired into the world around him, within the Matrix.

I noticed that this was a flaw in my naturalistic explanation so I've been thinking on it and came up with this:
The anomaly in the code tampered with his growth, making his brain receptive to radio waves allowing him to connect with the Matrix without plugging into his spaceship. It explains why he never noticed the power until he went outside of the ship (which would've blocked the signals from coming inside) in a broadcast zone. (so it explains why he never picked anything up in Zion)

That explains his ability to sense the software running the machines... but how Smith was sensed remains a mystery... Laughing out loud

Quote:
The conversation with the architect, IMO, was where the story started to lose cohesion.

Yeah. Despite my musings of trying to explain it all away I actually agree... although I haven't watched it in a while. I should probably try again sometime. There's so many things I watched when I was younger that left me thinking "WTF was going on there?" (like Fight Club) and when I watch them a few years later they make a lot more sense...