REAL TRUTH

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REAL TRUTH

Life can be so different with different eye-glasses.  It's been revealed to me time and time again that we all look at life through our own personal perspectives basted on our past experiences in life..  Damn! It's true that our own minds can trick us,so it takes more than a thought or an idea to describe reality!

 As much as I wish that someone could magically describe and tell me exactly what life is and what this whole living experience mean  I know that nobody has ever described it that "hits home" - why? Because it still remains a mystery to me!

I don't knwo exactly how but I learned at a very early age that everyone reacted to different stimuli depending on their own personal experience, and what they've been told!  It really doesn't matter what the REAL TRUTH is.  Because the real truth can be magically made up, and it doesn't matter how rediculous it sounds.  Therefore we HAVE to do some research! You can't just believe everything people tell you.  It's easy to sound convincing, but the best theory is the one that explains ALL the facts.  

I could say they we are all Gods and that we create exactly what we subconscieslly expect.  Pure nonsense, I know! But that's just another way to explain the REAL TRUTH thing.

What does REAL TRUTH mean to you? Does absolute truth even exist?


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Eh. I hate the word "truth".

Eh. I hate the word "truth". It's gathered up all manner of connotations and emotional weight.

I prefer the more concrete term "objective reality", along with the idea that our understanding of objective reality always needs re-examining to help rid it of the emotional baggage we inevitably add in.

"Anyone can repress a woman, but you need 'dictated' scriptures to feel you're really right in repressing her. In the same way, homophobes thrive everywhere. But you must feel you've got scripture on your side to come up with the tedious 'Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve' style arguments instead of just recognising that some people are different." - Douglas Murray


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 I like that outlook.  It

 I like that outlook.  It makes perfect sense, but it seems so difficult to put into practice.

 

edit: especially if I'm engaged in any activity, it's very hard to remain objective.  In fact, when I am involved in any form of social or team-work intensive environment like work I find easy to remain objective on what tasks I have at hand, but not at the subject of the meaning of life.  I find it even more difficult to remain objective when trying to understand who I am.  It might be because I am an emotional creature, definately an animal.  Perhaps it is not outside my limitations to stay objective, that to remain objective is to sacrifice control?  It's hard to be objective when you're in a fight, but it's those who remain objective that win.  I wish it was easy, but I have a hard time remaining objective.

edit 2: What is purely objective anyway?  Since we can't see everything going on at the same time with complete understanding the how can we be perfectly objective?  All we have are tools we invented, both physical and intellectual, and history!  This is why saying there's a God and you know him makes no sense, because everything seems to come from tools and history.  It's what we make and what we make up.  The only way to know for sure is to test it out, which is why the scientific method remains the most reliable.  However, practicing this method, especially over emotions and what I think may be instinct, is not an easy task for everyone.


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SmallChristian wrote: I

SmallChristian wrote:

 I like that outlook.  It makes perfect sense, but it seems so difficult to put into practice.

 

edit: especially if I'm engaged in any activity, it's very hard to remain objective.  In fact, when I am involved in any form of social or team-work intensive environment like work I find it hard to stay objective.  I find it even more difficult to remain objective when trying to understand who I am.  It might be because I am an emotional creature, definately an animal.  Perhaps it is not outside my limitations to stay objective, that to remain objective is to sacrifice control?  It's hard to be objective when you're in a fight, but it's those who remain objective that win.  I wish it was easy, but I have a hard time remaining objective.

Really, I mean more generally than day-to-day. We can't deny our nature, we're going to make decisions based on our emotional reactions. There's nothing wrong with it, and besides; denying emotion is also denying much of what makes life fun and pleasurable. You just have to decide which decisions need a moment to get objective about. What movie you want to see isn't one of them, but which bank to save in is one time you need to take a step back and be as rational and objective as you can manage.

Besides the obvious (science) the next best thing to concentrate on is your values. Morality, your sense of meaning, your sense of the value of others, etc. RE-considering these decisions is not only useful but can be a lot of fun, especially if you discuss them with others. You see it happening on this web forum a lot.

"Anyone can repress a woman, but you need 'dictated' scriptures to feel you're really right in repressing her. In the same way, homophobes thrive everywhere. But you must feel you've got scripture on your side to come up with the tedious 'Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve' style arguments instead of just recognising that some people are different." - Douglas Murray


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I'm with Jill on how "truth"

I'm with Jill on how "truth" is usually sold to people, and has too many emotial plays attached to the word.

All you can do is be as objective as possible. You won't always be right and you won't always have all the information, when being objective; but as long as you don't lie to yourself or ignore the reality of things, being objective will become second nature. It took me alot of rethinking/reprogramming of my mind to discard the shackles that the Catholic church and my parents put on my mind. It's not an easy path being rational, but it is the most moral path.


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Heh, thanks for such a

Heh, thanks for such a topics, that's a pleasure to have you around. I usually don't have the guts to start them.

SmallChristian wrote:

Life can be so different with different eye-glasses.  It's been revealed to me time and time again that we all look at life through our own personal perspectives basted on our past experiences in life..  Damn! It's true that our own minds can trick us,so it takes more than a thought or an idea to describe reality!

 As much as I wish that someone could magically describe and tell me exactly what life is and what this whole living experience mean  I know that nobody has ever described it that "hits home" - why? Because it still remains a mystery to me!


Well, esoterics has some answers for that, but that means a whole new parallel cosmology to learn. Even if you would be ready to read a few of the most important books for the beginning, it also requires to search for a personal evidence, so you wouldn't believe it blindly. Every such a good book has in the beginning written that you should believe it only if it 'rings true' in your intuition, or if you have a justification for it, or something like that, otherwise not. If somewhere's written that this is the only truth ever, then it's a bullshit.
 

SmallChristian wrote:
  I could say they we are all Gods and that we create exactly what we subconscieslly expect.  Pure nonsense, I know! But that's just another way to explain the REAL TRUTH thing.
No, not so much. Consciousness is such an unique thing, that it could quite well be a divine qualifier, and by increasing the consciousness, we can increase the rate of our divinity. This is maybe why the local denizen I AM AS GOD AS YOU says, that we are all gods. Well, why not? The cells in our bodies maybe sees it like that, when they faithfully resist an ungodly heathens from the outside, the bacteries and viruses.
I mean it half-seriously, half as a fun. The G-word did too much damage when it was connected with religion. Originally, it might mean something like we mean it here, a collective, and yet subjective consciousness consisting of a cells, like it is in our brain. It's a nonsense to worship such a thing. The whole worship is a nonsense. In fact, and that's hilarious, most of contemporary people is much more intelligent and moral than the biblical Jahweh, who's supposedly a source of all morality. Well, ain't we gods, then? Smiling

SmallChristian wrote:
What does REAL TRUTH mean to you? Does absolute truth even exist?
Yes, I believe that an absolute truth(s) exists, and all our truths are relative towards it. We can have more relative truths or less. (thus more objective) For example, according to esoteric theory, it is possible and desirable to become a perfect human. However, such a perfect human is a novice in certain greater challenges. But of course, don't believe in it, unless you have a reason for it.

Laughing_Man_d8D wrote:
I'm with Jill on how "truth" is usually sold to people, and has too many emotial plays attached to the word.

All you can do is be as objective as possible. You won't always be right and you won't always have all the information, when being objective; but as long as you don't lie to yourself or ignore the reality of things, being objective will become second nature. It took me alot of rethinking/reprogramming of my mind to discard the shackles that the Catholic church and my parents put on my mind. It's not an easy path being rational, but it is the most moral path.

Yeah, that's what I hopefully do, though hardly anybody around seems to agree Smiling

 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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I agree with you SC, that we

I agree with you SC, that we all see what we expect to see.  It takes talent to be truly open-minded, IMO.  I am CERTAIN that I have not achieved such a skill level...even though I consciously try to not be biased.

As far as someone describing to you what life is 'all about', I don't know that you can actually gain that information from another.  We, as humans, should learn what life means to US and how we can make the most of it, be helpful to others, and hopefully bring about a change for the better in the world in which we reside.  I believe that going through life without an instruction manual is horrifying to most...which is why folks cling so mightily to the bible...it has intructions in it. 

I would like to propose that having instructions just for the sake of having them is nonsensical.  One must decide if those instructions are actually valid, useful, or even correct...then discard them if they are not.  Just because 'everyone else is doing something' (believing), doesn't mean you have to.  (just remember what mom said about jumping off that bridge)

SC, you do not need to know anything except yourself.  YOU are you.  Nobody else is.  Own it, enjoy it, and live it.

Cheers!


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I don't know about truth,

I don't know about truth, but I have some things to say on proof!

'A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It's a proof. A proof is a proof, and when you have a good proof, it's because it's proven.' - Jean Chrétien.

Actually, my thoughts on truth kind of equate with the above.  Let us not say that a tautology has never gotten us anywhere.

[This may ruin the humour, but I can never know when someone might take something seriously; the above is supposed to be funny.]

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"Well the things that happen less often are more likely to be the result of the supper natural. A thing like loosing my keys in the morning is not likely supper natural, but finding a thousand dollars or meeting a celebrity might be."


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Truth is best understood in

Truth is best understood in terms of prediction. Truth is like an arrow. When we say that an arrow is 'true', we mean that when you aim it at a target, it will strike the target, rather than flying off and missing completely.

Newton's theory of motion is 'true', because when you use it to predict motion, it makes accurate predictions. What it predicts comes 'true'. The arrow strikes the target.

Einstein's theory of general relativity is 'more true' than Newton's laws, because it explains Newton's motion, but it also explains motion near the speed of light, which Newton's laws fail to do. When you look at motion near the speed of light, Newton's arrow misses the target, but Einstein's arrow strikes the target. Einstein makes better predictions, and so is 'more true'.

When you think of it this way, there is no such thing as 'absolute truth', because no one can possibly make perfect predictions. Post-determinism proves that perfect predictions of the future are impossible for very trivial cases.

BUT (and this is a very important but, which is why it's all caps, and why I'm emphasizing it in this parenthetical) there are *some* truths. There are even ways of knowing truths. And if you have some basic truths, you can discover even better truths. This is called 'learning'. Smiling

There are so many people today who say, "Well, if there's no absolute truth, then there's no truth at all. What's the point of even trying?" This is the root sentiment of postmodernism, nihilism, and other defeatist philosophies (we should call them misosophies, for these people *hate* wisdom). Unfortunately, people are sucked in by this silliness, while at the same time making use of modern technology, going to appointments on time, looking both ways before crossing the street, etc.

There is no Absolute Truth (tm), but there *are* some truths (small t). We *do* know some things. Reality is real, and we can discover it, though never perfectly. And not only is that okay, it's wonderful!

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 I'd like to point you to

 I'd like to point you to this just-posted essay on knowledge and its acquisition:

Science For Dummies

Pay no attention to the title.  It's a play on all those yellow books (that are still really popular, I might add.)

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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 Hey guys, it took me a

 Hey guys, it took me a while to reply because I've been overwhelmed by the thoughtful responses!  I suppose I'm in a vulnerable state where I'm trying to find a more profound meaning in my life then what I've already establsihed.  I suppose the two jobs, the gym, and becoming fiscally responsible has been wonderful, but it's not enouigh.  It's almost like I have a strong desire to have a sense of purpose with the entire universe. Narcism I think.  

I understand what science is and I use it every day.  In fact I've found science to be extremely beneficial with my work-ethic.  It's useful for being accurate, and with practice things speed up.  When applying science to every-day practical things, it's great.  When applying science to trying to understand things that I cannot know, it's nonsense.  The whole REAL truth is something we cannot know, maybe I just want to be special.

I'm doing very well in my life, and I owe a great deal of it to being practical.  Things are great.  Perhaps things are so well that I have too much free-time to think about things I can't even figure out.

Anyway, I was given a suggestion to read a book called "Philosophy: Who needs it?" and I want to check it out.  I'll be honest, I feel that I'm in a weak vulnerable state where I want to think irrationally.  It's almost as if the irrational thinking makes me feel better about myself, but in the end there is NO fruit and there is no progress.  So there is a dissonance between wanting testable progress in my life and understanding of the "meaning of life and purpose" - They seem to be competing in a strange way.  

In the past all pursuits into the "meaning of life" has only alienated me from the real truth.  It has only blinded me from what's really happening in my day to day life.  It has only caused me to stagnate and regurgitate the same thoughts and feelings for things unknown.  Religion can be such a STOPPER.  It can prevent you from knowing what's really happening aroud you, and what you don't know can kill you.  Imagine if we still thought seizures were demonic and instead of treating epilipsey we either ran off scared from people shaking on the ground or asked for a priest to exercise them.  My ex-gf thought that demons were the things that caused cars to break down (dead serious, she had a vision of a snake around the engine etc!)

 I mean, it's just an example, but religious or spiritual thought does things like that (some subtle) and sometimes I miss those crazy ideas but at the same time I've found that if you can test it and verify it, you can change it.  And if you can change it, you can make progress.  Progress is my motive and wiuthout it life would be pretty pointless me.  I feel like if I'm not learning something that is verifiable and can be put into practice / manipulated then I'm wasting my time.  At the same time I feel a dissonance because I want to believe in stupid things like astrology or magic or some profound explanation of what life is.  Sometimes I just want that "hidden nugget of truth" more than I want my coffee in the morning!

This self-observation might help shed light into why some of us cling to religion despite it's nonsense.  I refuse to go down the religious path, but it's not always easy for me to remain logical and rational.  I am human afterall.

 So why struggle with the meaning of life at all if it has no meaning?  Because life is so precious and finite.  We'll never come up with any philosophy that everyone will be dumbfounded by and say "THATS IT" - nothing that just comes out as a pure fact that can be used as evidence and tested and we can structure theories on.  

Life is what you make it, I guess.  I'm just trying to find mine.  If anything let me just say this is a humble plea to all freethinkers out there.  What should I do to stop this internal madness?  Applying reason works only for so long, perhaps I should just pick up some books on philosophy or other religions?  Maybe I need to just gain some more knowledge...


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SmallChristian wrote:Life is

SmallChristian wrote:
Life is what you make it, I guess.  I'm just trying to find mine.  If anything let me just say this is a humble plea to all freethinkers out there.  What should I do to stop this internal madness?  Applying reason works only for so long, perhaps I should just pick up some books on philosophy or other religions?  Maybe I need to just gain some more knowledge...

I think I know where you're coming from, SC. I've gone through a similar kind of 'searching for something' phase, and I've discovered a lot about it, and about myself.

First, I want to warn you of something. You may be an ex-Christian, but there's a good possibility that there are several 'religions' that you subscribe to without realizing it. What I mean by 'religion' here is much more general than Christianity or Islam or whatever. I mean those unchallenged assumptions that society instills in children, which most people take for granted and just believe as if it is reality, when in fact it's just another layer of culture.

For example, the whole 'work ethic' thing you were talking about. It reminds me of when I was a workaholic. Now, I'm not saying I know you enough to 'diagnose' you or something. I'm just picking up on a few cues I read in your post that reminded me of my own experience. So, I'll just tell you my own experience and if you identify with it, then maybe it will be helpful.

When I was in school, I bought into the whole "you can be whatever you want to be, just as long as you try hard enough," thing. This is an example of the 'religions' I'm talking about. It's the corporate consumerism religion. It says, "Work hard. Keep working. Uh oh! Someone's got more stuff than you. Work harder! Buy more stuff! Still not happy? Buy more stuff! Work harder!"

There's a whole mythology that goes with this religion: The rags-to-riches stories of corporate CEOs that started with 10 cents and now own half the world. The fantastic cruise vacation that you're saving up for for you meagre two-week vacation (if you're lucky!). The hot chick layed out on the Lambourghini. Etc. etc.

Anyway, I pretty much bought into it, and pursued the best job I could find, making lots of money. I was even living in Prague, one of the most beautiful cities of the world. As far as the 'corporate dream', I pretty much was at the top. And yet, I was just not happy.

The worst part was, I didn't know why I wasn't happy (reminds me of what you said about wanting to progress, but also not being completely satisfied with that). It took me a long time, but I finally realized what was wrong: I needed to give up this religion too!

This took a lot of introspection, and a lot of learning about myself and my inner emotions. I realized that I had sacrificed myself to serve this image I had been indoctrinated with. I had to drop the image and regain myself. Very difficult, and in my case, very painful.

That's when I started to develop my perspective on what I now call 'wonderism', which is a philosophy all about finding the wonder in my life again, rather than living this empty corporate life I was living. There's no superstition or mysticism or anything like that in wonderism, but there is a focus on what some would call 'spiritual' experience. Now, I despise the word 'spiritual', since I don't believe in spirits, which is why I think 'wonder' does a better job of capturing the idea. One of the cool things about the word wonder is that it has several meanings that fit perfectly in with my scientific worldview: The sense of wonder (experience), the verb 'to wonder' (ask questions, seek answers), and the noun 'a wonder' (some great work to bring forth in the world). If you understand Carl Sagan's view, you'll understand basically what wonderism is all about.

So, first, I would suggest some introspection to see if there are any lingering 'religions' you still cling to unconsciously. These are false assumptions about life. Are you happy? If not, why not? What's missing?

Then, I would suggest learning more than just 'science' and 'rationality', although those are definitely important. But a life of pure logic is emotionally empty. Read some good science fiction or fantasy to excercise your imagination. Read about mythology and metaphor, which are non-rational, but still useful (I recommend Joseph Campbell). Practice some meditation if that helps you. There are lots of other options, and I only know a few.

You don't need to continually progress. Another word that's related to 'wonder' is 'wander'. Take time to wander around and enjoy life. Walk in the park. Go out with friends. Also, wander inside yourself. Daydream. Recollect your past and find some emotions in there. Take care of yourself as if you were a loving parent of yourself as a child (this is one of the things I think Christians get out of the God idea; you can achieve the same effect without any God belief).

Of course, these are just the things I've discovered for myself, and you will have different needs than I do. Just realize that you're a human animal that needs play as well as work. Wild and crazy ideas as well as science and logic. Inner peace as well as outward focus.

Oh, and you can have 'spirituality' without the spirits. There is nothing beneficial about religion that you cannot achieve without the dogma, irrationality, etc.

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 Quote:In the past all

 

Quote:
In the past all pursuits into the "meaning of life" has only alienated me from the real truth.  It has only blinded me from what's really happening in my day to day life.  It has only caused me to stagnate and regurgitate the same thoughts and feelings for things unknown.

You're wise to realize this.  I wonder how many people waste their lives looking for real meaning when they had it all along.

Quote:
At the same time I feel a dissonance because I want to believe in stupid things like astrology or magic or some profound explanation of what life is.  Sometimes I just want that "hidden nugget of truth" more than I want my coffee in the morning!

It may not directly feel like it, but what you're searching for is predictive power.  If you can read the morning horoscope and get a little edge on the world, that's power.  Magic will let you cast a spell on that certain someone and make them love you.  God will give you life after death so that you don't feel like this is for nothing.  It's all predictive power.  Or, to put it more simply, it's all power.

There's nothing irrational about wanting power.  You're wise to realize that the quest for power can actually stifle your progress towards getting it.  Consider that while other people were searching for some deep meaning in their life, I was busy reading books about evolution.  Once I had read enough of them, I realized that it is self-actualizing for me to help other people understand it better.  Once I started doing that, I realized that my special interest lies in the evolution of human psychology and the roots of our sexuality.  By just living life I created my own meaning and purpose.  Had I been too busy worrying about what my meaning was, I'd have never acquired the knowledge to do something that gave my life more meaning.

Quote:
This self-observation might help shed light into why some of us cling to religion despite it's nonsense.  I refuse to go down the religious path, but it's not always easy for me to remain logical and rational.  I am human afterall.

You've been very indulgent to read the essays I've linked for you.  Here's another one:

Does Science Take Away Wonder and Awe?

If there is a lesson from all the scientists I mention in this essay, it's this:  Life is in the doing.  We wouldn't know any of these guys if they hadn't taken their human insecurities and foibles and run headlong with them into the fray.  I'm not suggesting you have to be a scientist, of course.  I'm saying that you'll be one step closer to getting past your tendencies toward irrationality if you just ignore them and find something productive to do as opposed to something to think about.  Make sense?

Quote:
 So why struggle with the meaning of life at all if it has no meaning?  Because life is so precious and finite.  We'll never come up with any philosophy that everyone will be dumbfounded by and say "THATS IT" - nothing that just comes out as a pure fact that can be used as evidence and tested and we can structure theories on.  

I hope that we can, actually.  (Ok... obviously not everybody.)  I think we can change the group mentality.  There are millions and millions of people who live by personal philosophies that don't include any personal rewards in the afterlife.  They find meaning in this life by examining their living of it.  Some have mystical explanations, like Buddhists, but the fact remains -- even though they're 'religious' in the traditional sense, their sense of meaning doesn't derive from higher purpose.  It derives from personal purpose.  It's the same with us atheists.  We just call our sense of longing for purpose what it is -- a human evolutionary trait.  Then we go about trying to find personal fulfilment the same way as anyone else.  By doing stuff until we find stuff that's fulfilling!

Quote:
Life is what you make it, I guess.  I'm just trying to find mine.  If anything let me just say this is a humble plea to all freethinkers out there.  What should I do to stop this internal madness?  Applying reason works only for so long, perhaps I should just pick up some books on philosophy or other religions?  Maybe I need to just gain some more knowledge...

It may also make you feel better to know that your age might have a lot to do with it.  Youth and ennui and angst go together.  It will probably get better just by hanging around for another couple of decades.

 

 

 

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Hey SC,Take a break, forget

Hey SC,

Take a break, forget about work, sit back, relax, and watch this:

Granted, it's only an introduction, but still quite awesome. Subscribe to this guy's channel and get the next episodes as they come.

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SmallChristian wrote: I

SmallChristian wrote:

 I mean, it's just an example, but religious or spiritual thought does things like that (some subtle) and sometimes I miss those crazy ideas but at the same time I've found that if you can test it and verify it, you can change it.  And if you can change it, you can make progress.  Progress is my motive and wiuthout it life would be pretty pointless me.  I feel like if I'm not learning something that is verifiable and can be put into practice / manipulated then I'm wasting my time.  At the same time I feel a dissonance because I want to believe in stupid things like astrology or magic or some profound explanation of what life is.  Sometimes I just want that "hidden nugget of truth" more than I want my coffee in the morning!

I kind of like what you're saying about progress.  If you allow yourselves to become ensnared by other people’s dogma then you loose much of your ability to make progress, but if you keep an open mind then change is always possible.  Change is not always good, but with change there is hope for improvement.  To me the idea that human beings are capable of progress is very profound, and the idea that I can be a part of that progress by resisting dogmatic beliefs makes me feel that my life has some meaning in a broader sense.  


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natural wrote:Anyway, I

natural wrote:

Anyway, I pretty much bought into it, and pursued the best job I could find, making lots of money. I was even living in Prague, one of the most beautiful cities of the world. As far as the 'corporate dream', I pretty much was at the top. And yet, I was just not happy.

Hello, former countryman. You've seen more of Prague than me, what a shame. Did they allow you to practice the local language?

natural wrote:
The worst part was, I didn't know why I wasn't happy (reminds me of what you said about wanting to progress, but also not being completely satisfied with that). It took me a long time, but I finally realized what was wrong: I needed to give up this religion too!

This took a lot of introspection, and a lot of learning about myself and my inner emotions. I realized that I had sacrificed myself to serve this image I had been indoctrinated with. I had to drop the image and regain myself. Very difficult, and in my case, very painful.

Congratulations! This is what it means to be twice of an atheist. The same message is said by so many of my sources and people, that it deserves to be called an objective truth about the life and lesson to the world.

 

SmallChristian wrote:
 I mean, it's just an example, but religious or spiritual thought does things like that (some subtle) and sometimes I miss those crazy ideas but at the same time I've found that if you can test it and verify it, you can change it.  And if you can change it, you can make progress.  Progress is my motive and wiuthout it life would be pretty pointless me.  I feel like if I'm not learning something that is verifiable and can be put into practice / manipulated then I'm wasting my time.  At the same time I feel a dissonance because I want to believe in stupid things like astrology or magic or some profound explanation of what life is.  Sometimes I just want that "hidden nugget of truth" more than I want my coffee in the morning!

Excuse me, but is it a longing for an easy solution on everything? You obviously know, that everywhere in presence of progress, nothing is given easily, for nothing. But still, you contradict yourself.
Basically, I'd say you sometimes want a small, easily portable, well sounding truth, which is very helpful in life and comes with a lot of evidence accessible to everyone. This is deceptive, because if it's a rationalistic golden nugget of truth, then it will be useless to Christians, and vice versa. Also, the evidence is very scarce. If you're lucky, you can have an evidence for yourself, but for nobody else. Many truth seekers also fails on a small detail, that the truth may require years of study and even more years of practice. This all is true even for the original astrology and magic, more so the truth. Shortly said, you don't know exactly what are you searching for. Maybe you could be a bit more specific? You surely don't seek for golden nuggets and you didn't specify what do you mean by progress.

It seems to me, that both rationalists and Christians seeks only a specific brand of truth, despising everything else. For them, the world is a sea of stupidity except of a single island of truth, theirs. This is another religion which must be rejected - I have the only truth and everyone else are idiots. The truth is everywhere around, something is wrong with those searching for so long, that they doesn't see it. There is something true in everything that exists and happens, no matter if we disagree with it. Such a things can teach us a lot.
Maybe this is, what we should call open-mindedness or objectivity. So far, I know only a few of such an individuals, who could see the common ground behind various truth versions of various people. This is one of rare abilities I admire. What do you guys think?

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SmallChristian
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 Hey lums, I think HamBy

 Hey lums, I think HamBy nailed it with the power thing. that really hit home with me.  As far as progress goes, I've found that science has helped me improve my life in many ways;  from social to financial to health.  As far as knowing the truth, etc, and waht real truth is.  I can say that being objective is the best way to go, and I can also say that if anybody comes to me with "I have the truth and everyone else is wrong" I won't be believing them.

 

While I've found rationalism to be amazing in improving my life by practical means (Prosperity, Health, Social Life, Work Ethic) I have found an emptiness when dealing with "The maning of life" - I wonder where I should look, and indeed if what I find can be verified scientifically.

 

"There is no spoon."

 


Brian37
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SmallChristian wrote:Does

SmallChristian wrote:

Does absolute truth even exist?

I cant prove that I have a purple snarfwidget making kegs of beer for me on Sunday while I watch football. But, I am sure you loose no sleep placing such an absurd claim in your trash can of claims other people might make.

Talking about law of probibility does not exclude one from safely throwing an absurd claim into the trash can of claims. Otherwise Thor might really make lighting, and we know that lighting is not the cause of a being, but rather a result of positive and negitive charges in the atmosphere.

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Hambydammit
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 Quote:While I've found

 

Quote:
While I've found rationalism to be amazing in improving my life by practical means (Prosperity, Health, Social Life, Work Ethic) I have found an emptiness when dealing with "The maning of life" - I wonder where I should look, and indeed if what I find can be verified scientifically.

I encourage you to continue looking within rationalism.  I believe the answer is there.  After all, I am a committed rationalist, and I feel a great sense of purpose and meaning in life, so... there must be purpose and meaning that can be found through rationalism.

I suspect there are two reasons many people think rationalism can't answer questions of meaning:

1) They don't fully understand rationalism

2) Answers from science are harder than answers from pseudoscience or religion.

As to the former, a lot of people see rationalism as cold and removed.  They think it takes away wonder and mystery.  I have discovered that it does exactly the opposite, but it's taken a lot of work to get here from there.  Did you read my essay about light and how a simple discovery opened up so many avenues of new mystery and wonder?

Also, a lot of people really don't understand that all questions can be answered rationally.  Granted, the answer to some questions is "it doesn't exist" or "that's a nonsense question," but those are the correct answers.

The second thing is probably just as big a problem.  Most people don't want to commit the time to learn the real answers to questions.  They just want a quick summary, and if they can't grasp it from that, they don't care to dig any deeper.  That's not the worst thing in the world, but a rationalist will demand of himself that he not take a stand on things he doesn't understand.  That's the tricky part.  Look, I know psychology, sociology and evolutionary psychology.  I don't know physics, astronomy, or electrical engineering.  I have no desire to learn them.  I live my life in a way that I avoid having to answer physics questions, and when they come up, I pass them on to someone who I trust to answer them correctly.  It's certainly possible to avoid the question of meaning in life because it involves studying evolution and psychology.  But... is it really possible to live life while deferring the question of meaning?

Not for me...

 

 

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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