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BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God

GUEST,Ed 04 Mar 08 - 06:33 AM
TheSnail 04 Mar 08 - 06:40 AM
Bryn Pugh 04 Mar 08 - 07:43 AM
GUEST,PMB 04 Mar 08 - 08:07 AM
Mrrzy 04 Mar 08 - 08:54 AM
Mr Happy 04 Mar 08 - 09:12 AM
Shaneo 04 Mar 08 - 09:30 AM
Wesley S 04 Mar 08 - 09:36 AM
GUEST,Ed 04 Mar 08 - 09:58 AM
Amos 04 Mar 08 - 10:04 AM
wysiwyg 04 Mar 08 - 10:21 AM
Bill D 04 Mar 08 - 10:29 AM
Mr Happy 04 Mar 08 - 10:31 AM
mack/misophist 04 Mar 08 - 10:39 AM
Jeri 04 Mar 08 - 10:41 AM
Amos 04 Mar 08 - 10:57 AM
GUEST,Ed 04 Mar 08 - 11:00 AM
Stilly River Sage 04 Mar 08 - 11:09 AM
Arkie 04 Mar 08 - 11:29 AM
Mrrzy 04 Mar 08 - 11:37 AM
katlaughing 04 Mar 08 - 11:43 AM
GUEST,JTS 04 Mar 08 - 11:44 AM
autolycus 04 Mar 08 - 11:55 AM
MaineDog 04 Mar 08 - 11:56 AM
katlaughing 04 Mar 08 - 11:58 AM
Amos 04 Mar 08 - 12:10 PM
katlaughing 04 Mar 08 - 12:14 PM
Joe Offer 04 Mar 08 - 12:51 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Mar 08 - 12:56 PM
Amos 04 Mar 08 - 01:09 PM
PoppaGator 04 Mar 08 - 01:29 PM
Little Hawk 04 Mar 08 - 01:29 PM
katlaughing 04 Mar 08 - 01:58 PM
Little Hawk 04 Mar 08 - 02:06 PM
autolycus 04 Mar 08 - 02:19 PM
Joe Offer 04 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM
Partridge 04 Mar 08 - 02:49 PM
Bill D 04 Mar 08 - 03:04 PM
autolycus 04 Mar 08 - 03:29 PM
Jeri 04 Mar 08 - 05:01 PM
Joe Offer 04 Mar 08 - 05:03 PM
GUEST,Appaloosa Lady 04 Mar 08 - 05:52 PM
Amos 04 Mar 08 - 06:53 PM
Slag 04 Mar 08 - 06:58 PM
Peace 04 Mar 08 - 07:06 PM
John Hardly 04 Mar 08 - 07:12 PM
john f weldon 04 Mar 08 - 07:19 PM
Peace 04 Mar 08 - 07:23 PM
bobad 04 Mar 08 - 07:31 PM
Little Hawk 04 Mar 08 - 07:34 PM
Jeri 04 Mar 08 - 08:01 PM
John Hardly 04 Mar 08 - 08:12 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 04 Mar 08 - 10:33 PM
Slag 05 Mar 08 - 01:35 AM
GUEST,Chongo Chimp 05 Mar 08 - 01:57 AM
Little Hawk 05 Mar 08 - 02:08 AM
Joe Offer 05 Mar 08 - 03:39 AM
Bryn Pugh 05 Mar 08 - 05:58 AM
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maeve 05 Mar 08 - 12:12 PM
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Bee 05 Mar 08 - 01:56 PM
Peace 05 Mar 08 - 02:10 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 02:15 PM
Peace 05 Mar 08 - 02:17 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 02:33 PM
Wesley S 05 Mar 08 - 02:39 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 02:42 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM
Bee 05 Mar 08 - 02:46 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 02:56 PM
Megan L 05 Mar 08 - 03:04 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 05 Mar 08 - 03:12 PM
Little Hawk 05 Mar 08 - 05:47 PM
John Hardly 05 Mar 08 - 06:02 PM
John Hardly 05 Mar 08 - 06:05 PM
Peace 05 Mar 08 - 06:07 PM
John Hardly 05 Mar 08 - 06:17 PM
Amos 05 Mar 08 - 09:43 PM
katlaughing 05 Mar 08 - 10:47 PM
Slag 06 Mar 08 - 01:17 AM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 06:14 AM
GUEST,UNbrainwashed 06 Mar 08 - 06:55 AM
catspaw49 06 Mar 08 - 07:02 AM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 06 Mar 08 - 08:01 AM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 06 Mar 08 - 08:04 AM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 09:50 AM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 12:56 PM
skarpi 06 Mar 08 - 01:08 PM
Amos 06 Mar 08 - 01:09 PM
skarpi 06 Mar 08 - 01:14 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 01:19 PM
Peace 06 Mar 08 - 01:20 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 01:41 PM
Amos 06 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 03:42 PM
GUEST,Appaloosa Lady 06 Mar 08 - 03:59 PM
Amos 06 Mar 08 - 04:00 PM
Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 04:36 PM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 05:24 PM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 05:25 PM
Peace 06 Mar 08 - 05:28 PM
Donuel 06 Mar 08 - 05:33 PM
catspaw49 06 Mar 08 - 05:42 PM
Peace 06 Mar 08 - 05:49 PM
Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 05:52 PM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 06:09 PM
Peace 06 Mar 08 - 06:10 PM
Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 06:12 PM
Peace 06 Mar 08 - 06:15 PM
Bee 06 Mar 08 - 06:19 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 06:20 PM
beardedbruce 06 Mar 08 - 06:24 PM
John Hardly 06 Mar 08 - 06:42 PM
Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 07:26 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 08:40 PM
Bill D 06 Mar 08 - 08:47 PM
Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 08:58 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 09:01 PM
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Little Hawk 06 Mar 08 - 09:08 PM
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KT 06 Mar 08 - 10:02 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 06 Mar 08 - 10:46 PM
GUEST,Boab 07 Mar 08 - 02:02 AM
Bill D 07 Mar 08 - 06:27 PM
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Peace 07 Mar 08 - 06:53 PM
TheSnail 07 Mar 08 - 07:16 PM
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Amos 07 Mar 08 - 08:31 PM
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John Hardly 07 Mar 08 - 08:57 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 07 Mar 08 - 09:01 PM
Bert 07 Mar 08 - 09:30 PM
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Bert 07 Mar 08 - 11:21 PM
Little Hawk 08 Mar 08 - 12:26 AM
Bert 08 Mar 08 - 12:47 AM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 10:07 AM
Amos 08 Mar 08 - 10:47 AM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 08 Mar 08 - 01:01 PM
Little Hawk 08 Mar 08 - 02:31 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 04:18 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 04:19 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 04:23 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 04:28 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 04:33 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 04:34 PM
bobad 08 Mar 08 - 05:00 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 05:51 PM
autolycus 08 Mar 08 - 06:21 PM
Slag 08 Mar 08 - 06:59 PM
John Hardly 08 Mar 08 - 07:05 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 08 Mar 08 - 07:38 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 08 Mar 08 - 07:45 PM
Little Hawk 08 Mar 08 - 08:08 PM
GUEST,Chicken Charlie 08 Mar 08 - 08:18 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 08:22 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 08:23 PM
Peace 08 Mar 08 - 08:24 PM
Slag 08 Mar 08 - 09:13 PM
Bill D 08 Mar 08 - 09:16 PM
Jeri 08 Mar 08 - 09:32 PM
Mrrzy 09 Mar 08 - 02:15 PM
Little Hawk 09 Mar 08 - 03:17 PM
Bill D 09 Mar 08 - 04:57 PM
Peace 09 Mar 08 - 05:02 PM
Emma B 09 Mar 08 - 05:35 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 09 Mar 08 - 05:58 PM
Bill D 09 Mar 08 - 06:13 PM
Amos 09 Mar 08 - 06:15 PM
Sorcha 09 Mar 08 - 06:19 PM
TheSnail 09 Mar 08 - 06:37 PM
Emma B 09 Mar 08 - 06:51 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 09 Mar 08 - 07:05 PM
Little Hawk 09 Mar 08 - 07:40 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 09 Mar 08 - 10:44 PM
Bee 09 Mar 08 - 10:58 PM
Slag 10 Mar 08 - 02:24 AM
Mrrzy 10 Mar 08 - 09:00 AM
Little Hawk 10 Mar 08 - 09:25 AM
Bee 10 Mar 08 - 10:57 AM
TheSnail 10 Mar 08 - 11:08 AM
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Little Hawk 10 Mar 08 - 11:41 AM
Riginslinger 10 Mar 08 - 12:05 PM
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GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 10 Mar 08 - 12:12 PM
GUEST,PMB 10 Mar 08 - 12:31 PM
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Wesley S 12 Mar 08 - 09:26 AM
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GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 12 Mar 08 - 11:24 AM
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Subject: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 06:33 AM

I really would.

Surely 'He' could make it easier???


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: TheSnail
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 06:40 AM

Ed, go to the zoo and rattle your walking stick along the bars of the tiger cage if that's the sort of fun you want.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:43 AM

No one is preventing you.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 08:07 AM

Surely 'He' could make it easier?

Sounds like it's not God you need, more like vaseline.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 08:54 AM

Oh, I don't know. I went through a long adolescent-angst period of wishing I could believe in some god, but I just couldn't take that step of actually having faith. I went to houses of worship and I think that if any HUMANS working there had actually shown any compassion for an angst-ridden and occasionally hysterically weeping teenager, I might have been convinced that they were following some higher power.
Now, I can see that what I really needed was that human compassion, but at the time, I thought whatever was bothering me was hopelessly beyond the reach of human aid.

Of course, the antidepressants of adulthood don't hurt, either.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mr Happy
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 09:12 AM

Just use your imagination!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Shaneo
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 09:30 AM

The first step would be for you to read the bible, give us a shout when your finished. [the catholic one]


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Wesley S
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 09:36 AM

Gosh - it's been several days since we had an anti-religion thread here at the Mudcat. I was beginning to wonder. Let me guess - all the same people are going to show up and say all the same things they've said in all the other threads. For about 5 or 6 hundred posts. Thanks "Guest Ed".


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 09:58 AM

In what way is "I'd like to believe that there is a God" please, "Wesley S"?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:04 AM

Sure, Ed. You have my permission. Go ahead and start.

Ther good part is you get to design him according to how you want his impact on the world to seem. And you can always write a second edition if the old one seems to extreme one way or the other.


And, yes, belieiving in a God will "make it easier", no question, at least in the short-term.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: wysiwyg
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:21 AM

When one reallly wants to increase one's faith, the internet is not the environment from which one generally can do it. It's about relationship.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:29 AM

You have nothing to say, Ed? You just want others to create several hundred posts for you to read...with the same result as last time?

No thanks....


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mr Happy
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:31 AM

Is there some motive or justification in your yearning?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: mack/misophist
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:39 AM

If you want to believe, try this logic quiz to discover what you want to believe. You may surprize yourself.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Jeri
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:41 AM

Mudcat is not the place to come for solace or a friend. Cruelty, criticism, debate and one-upmanship, yes. Kindness, no. Sorry Ed

I don't believe in a god that can make everything better. You look for that with loved ones, and if you don't have any of those, you try to figure out what you can do for yourself. Find out what you love and focus on that, because, in my opinion, external things, religion and other people, can and will let you down. It doesn't even mean they did anything wrong.

Ignore this or post on topic. I swear, if someone came in here and said they were thinking about suicide, a semi-regular Mudcat regiment of sanctimonious, knee-jerk offended, judgmental, know-it-all assholes would egg him on. Either that or bitch about the fact he posted.

I miss compassion...
I miss people being able to shut the fuck up when they don't have anything positive to say. Then again, I don't think Mudcatters were ever any good at stifling the urge to attack when they smelled blood.



I Think It's Going To Rain Today    (in the DT)
© Randy Newman

Broken windows and empty hallways
A pale dead moon in the sky streaked with gray
Human kindness is overflowing
And I think it's going to rain today

Scarecrows dressed in the latest styles
With frozen smiles to chase love away
Human kindness is overflowing
And I think it's going to rain today

Lonely, lonely
Tin can at my feet
Think I'll kick it down the street
That's the way to treat a friend

Bright before me the signs implore me
To help the needy and show them the way
Human kindness is overflowing
And I think it's going to rain today


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:57 AM

Ed:

Being slightly stung by Jeri's rematrks, I woud like to add this small thought: you have in you whatever you need to make "it" easier. You will do this on the path that is most suited to your own deep well-springs of knowing.

I wish you joy and good fortune.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:00 AM

Thank you, Amos.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:09 AM

"Read the Bible" someone says. The point has been made by people wiser than myself that part of the problem is too many people only look at the Cliff Notes version, if even that. Most simply follow the leader down whatever bigotted path they want to travel. Critical thinking is rarely a major feature of organized western religion, especially christianity.

Ed, you have to decide what is important to you, and what is sacred to you. It may or may not be in the context of an organized church or in the company of others.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Arkie
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:29 AM

Ed, if you are serious in this desire, belief will come to you, but Mudcat and other internet sites, as has already been suggested are not the best places to find encouragement. Belief in God is the developing of a relationship and that is best found in a community of believers but one might have to do some experimenting since not all communities of believers are equal in terms of nurturing. I would also suggest reading the Bible and you might start with Paul's Letter to the Romans and the Gospel of John. Belief and trust in God is a relatively simple thing and does not require acceptance of a multitude of dogmas and laws. Beware of communities that attempt to inflict them upon you. They can be helpful as explanations but are not to be considered conditions of faith. Belief in God does not make life easy. It will help in handling the difficulties of life, but they do not go away. Faith does sometimes come with a struggle. This was certainly true for Augustine and many other great teachers and leaders in the Christian tradition.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:37 AM

Nonsense about Mudcat not being a place to find a friend, or solace. Both are available here in abundance.

And I was very serious in my desire, when I had it, and belief did NOT come to me. Now, I'm not sorry, but at the time, I was. How do y'all do it, really? How do you take that leap, if you didn't have faith as a child?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:43 AM


Mudcat is not the place to come for solace or a friend. Cruelty, criticism, debate and one-upmanship, yes. Kindness, no.


Unless under certain and specific circumstances, i.e. Here, HERE, or, HERE with the latter two being heavily laced with humour.

I know those types are in the minority, but Mudcatters do come through, sometimes.

Ignore this or post on topic. I swear, if someone came in here and said they were thinking about suicide, a semi-regular Mudcat regiment of sanctimonious, knee-jerk offended, judgmental, know-it-all assholes would egg him on. Either that or bitch about the fact he posted.

On the other hand, I agree. We've seen way too much of this, imo and I miss the compassion, too. A whole bunch! I know it never comes down to just one person, but I sure don't remember the nastiness being so prevalent when Rick was still here. I miss him.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,JTS
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:44 AM

The man didn't ask for the Mudcat to make it easier for him to believe in God. He asked for God to do it. In the context of this thread the only way I could see that happening would be a good old fashioned smiting. So I'm outta here, looking over my back for lightning bolts the whole way.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: autolycus
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:55 AM

i Subject: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Ed - PM
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 06:33 AM

I really would.

Surely 'He' could make it easier???



   There is another way to look at that. Ir may not be a God making it difficult for you. It may be you who's making it difficult for you. Which would put you in the majority.

   If we are not prepared to be true to ourselves, then everything gets skewed as a result. The struggle is how to get from where we are to the place of being true to ourselves. There are, after all, many pressures to do otherwise.

   And the opening words of "The Road Less Travelled" are ,'Life is hard'. It's just that we are liable to make it harder. And if we can find another to blame for our travails, well, that lets us off the hook.

   the words 'light' and bushel', never mind 'talents' and 'parables', spring to mind.

    The massive advantage of 'God' is to relieve us of a load of responsibility. However, I've said stuff like that before, and peoiple tend to make for the exit post haste. Which I understand.    Often, I-I-I-I would rather someone else took responsibility for more of me, too.


   Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: MaineDog
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:56 AM

Well,
Think about where you might have come from.
If you beleive that you are a product of slime and time, then I hope you ennjoy it.
I prefer to see myself as a child of the Living God, and enjoy the benefits He promises. As others have said, YOU get to choose. Surprise!
MD


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 11:58 AM

Right you are, Ivor. It all comes down to our own free will and what we create with it, our words, and our thoughts and actions.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 12:10 PM

ANd there is a third option, not to be overlooked; where you may come from is not just slime and time, but your own profound spiritual nature using "slime and time" as am eans to communicate. In the Hindi greeting, "Nemaste", the thought is "The god within me celebrates the god within you". We may be, ourselves, the dance of a million gods. If so, one wonders who the musicians are... (just kidding).



A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 12:14 PM

If we are the dance of gods, can we not also be their musicians ala John Hartford and others?:-)

Namaste.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Joe Offer
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 12:51 PM

I hate these religion threads. I tell people I'm a believer because that is what I am; but I've found that when most people hear I'm a believer, they then pigeonhole me into whatever their understanding of belief is - in many cases, that seems to mean they think that I'm some sort of rigid automaton, marching to the drum of some demagogue. I can't even clap my hands to a rhythm somebody else sets, so I certainly can't march to anybody else's beat. I feel far more comfortable in a nebula, not tied to some rigid system of doctrine. I like to ponder things and see truth and beauty wherever it exists, and I'm not so sure I believe in Absolute Truth.

Or maybe I do, but my Absolute Truth can't be confined to words. The closest thing to absolute truth I know is the towering Ponderosa Pine on the edge of our ridge. It frames and enhances our sunsets, and it's the edge of our world - beyond that pine is the Coast Range, well over fifty miles away. I can ponder that pine forever, I think. There are other things of a more religious nature that I ponder, but those are things I can't share in this environment.

I can sing gospel and some other religious songs in any setting, because those songs are not sacred to me. For some reason, I can't sing that ones that are sacred to me unless the environment is right, and that doesn't happen very often in a folk music setting. I don't want anybody to feel that I'm imposing something on them (we did suspend the rules and had a wonderful hymn sing from the Quaker hymnal at Camp Harmony, though).

That being said, there have been some very good things said in this thread, from believers and nonbelievers alike. I especially appreciated what Arkie had to say.

For me, faith is a means of exploration, not a code of answers. Many people don't have that understanding of faith, but that's what it is for me - more questions than answers, more pondering than pontificating. That, and Ponderosa Pines (and an excuse for alliteration...)

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 12:56 PM

Point of clarification: by suggesting that people don't read the bible or that they have internalized an abbreviated version of the bible, I wasn't implying that it is in any way helpful to finding your god or anyone's god. I meant that people decided to believe in what they think it is about, what their leaders tell them, what suits them. It is a document with accounts and stories that have been so heavily modified and mediated by religious power brokers and heads of state that wise people might consider the document unreliable. Better use it as a source of literature. If you are interested, dig up the discussion of reading the bible by Julia Sweeney.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 01:09 PM

my Absolute Truth can't be confined to words


There you have it in a nutshell; this is the closest thing to an absolute any of these threads has been able to spark up, and the only statement that makes permanent sense, IMHO.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: PoppaGator
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 01:29 PM

A simple understanding of ths problem is that a person can't be made to believe anything that he cannot "see," or somehow otherwise sense and accept. On one level, that's certainly true. If I've never seen Santa Claus, and have been given all kinds of evidence that Santa Claus is nothing more than a charming fiction, then I certainly cannot be made to believe that the jolly old elf actually exists.

On another level, however, after living through a process of doubt and questioning and settling into a stance of profound agnosticism ~ when a person comes to the realization that neither the existence not the nonexistence of a God can be proven to one's satisfaction ~ it is possible for one to simply decide to believe, to decide to live one's life in the light of faith and hope, not in the shadow of doubt and cynicism.

A good first step is to discard all earlier notions of what God is, while remaining open to entirely new ideas of what God might be.

I suppose that you, like me, find it impossible to believe in a God who is a white-bearded old man floating on a cloud, kinda like Santa Claus except meaner. Anything you've ever been told about God that you find unbelievable, simply discard every such notion. If you can't believe in a creator who is essentially a grouchy old man, don't believe in that notion of God, but keep the door of your mind open to belief in another, more plausible and more sophisticated vision of the Divine. If you find it impossible to believe in a Supreme Being who makes everything easy and right for you, by all means reject belief in that very superficial notion of God, too, but reserve judgement on the existence of a God whose ways are beyond your understanding.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 01:29 PM

If you're being serious, Ed, then "seek and (perhaps) ye shall find", but try to put aside your prior expectations about the precise nature or attributes of this "God" you say you'd like to believe in. (For instance, why would it have to be a "He"?)

If you're not being serious, well, have fun in whatever fashion suits you, I guess.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: katlaughing
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 01:58 PM

Why at www.addall, I saw an interesting quote:

Faith is not belief without proof, but trust without reservations.

~ Elton Trueblood ~


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 02:06 PM

Excellent.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: autolycus
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 02:19 PM

Joe, People pigeon-hole each other constantly, on every subject, not just religion. And there's nothing one can do about that.

I csnnot make another see anything the way I see it. The whole contents of any of the world's libraries prove that,[never mind 'net discussions.].

And Joe, believe it or not, other people think that you and I, severally, have got them dead wrong. ck! (How wrong can they get    :-) ).

And then there's how different sects of various religions think they're right and the other sects wrong.

people need to have patterns of understanding to get along. An interesting question might be why more people don't say more often,"I don't know."

hence - Q.Why did the children of Israel spend so many years wandering in the desert?

          A. Because the leaders wouldn't ask for directions. (No doubt they just kneeeew where they were going.)


   Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Joe Offer
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM

I suppose you're right, Ivor. It's too bad, though, that we seem to have this human compulsion of reduce each other to no more than just a paragraph, a sentence, or sometimes only a word. We dismiss each other as "conservative," "liberal," or maybe "idiot" - and then pay no further attention to a person unless he or she thinks exactly the way we do.
I'd like to think folkies are better than that. They are --- sometimes.

I've found a good many Mudcatters who don't agree with me, but still take the time to listen and to appreciate what I have to say.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Partridge
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 02:49 PM

I believe that god is our consciense. There is a god and its within you.

Do as you would be done to
Pat xx


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 03:04 PM

" A. Because the leaders wouldn't ask for directions. (No doubt they just kneeeew where they were going.)"

Remember Golda Meir's famous quip? "Our people wandered the desert for 40 years...then settled in about the only place in the Middle-East without oil!"


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: autolycus
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 03:29 PM

I spent years in my therapy training partly on this exact point which amounts to really knowing that even the simple 'other' with you is a person as real as you

It was in the process of getting to know myself that others became more and more real, too. And how many are willing to follow the edict of many religions, the Oracle at Delphi, the words of many wise people from e.g.Socrates on ,and others, to "Know Thyself"?

We learn many ways to manipulate the environment (which includes others) to get what we want. Much of commonsensical daily life runs counter to treating others as real, flesh-and-blood,feeling people. It can be a lot of hard work ro start to 'get'/have that experience. Really hard work, sometimes. I suspect if we really made that effort, our existing social set-up would break down. That depends on us pigeon-holing and manipulating each other a lot for its very functioning. It's one thing to truly relate with those closest to us. With everyone,on the other hand, is a whole other ball of wax.

Course we'd all be better in terms of functioning and living with each other - being truly responsive, caring, loving, real, present, with each other - having that as the foundation of our society. Tho' how the 'ther(s)' might respond to that 'treatment' is yet another matter. They might not be able to handle it. But......

I dunno.


   Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Jeri
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 05:01 PM

Amos, thanks for your kindness above. I sometimes get frustrated with the way things seem to be here.

I don't believe in deities and I don't believe in religions. If I did, I'd probably be a pagan. Things aren't inherently good and evil, but simply have power.

I believe we can all be better than we are, myself included, and the only thing that keeps us and our situations from being better is that we stop trying. In this world, hope is the great good and despair the great evil. That's what pisses me off here sometimes: we can be better, but we don't try. It bothers me when I do it, and it bothers me when others descend to whomever's level instead of trying to climb above it.

Sometimes, you actually win by turning the other cheek.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Joe Offer
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 05:03 PM

I disagree, Jeri. My Ponderosa Pine is inherently good, as are the mountains I see behind it.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Appaloosa Lady
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 05:52 PM

"I'd like to believe that there is a God - Surely 'He' could make it easier?"


Of *course* there is God! :-) xxx

But you'll excuse me for not calling 'Him' or 'Her' and I therefore apologise for the repetitiveness of 'God' in what follows, (which is purely my opinion by the way, reached through many years of ups and downs)

I'm not at all religious, for all that palava belongs to 'Mankind'.

God is not to be found in 'holy' books, nor inside the rules or regulations which lie within them. God is not in churches or mosques, nor in wars or politics. God is not in hatred, or rape or murder. God is not there to be used for 'control' or to pour guilt down upon innocent people. God is not there in riches and jewels. God is not there as our young people vomit up their souls night after night, in drunken stupors, trying to stagger through a world that has turned its back upon them and upon God, leaving them with such an aching 'emptiness' inside.

God is in the eyes of the Big Issue Seller though, and in the cry of a newborn baby, in a mother's first look. God is there at the moment that a Love so deep is created, God is there when finally peace becomes stronger than war. God is in Joe's tree and in every animal that climbs it, every cloud that rises above it, every raindrop which falls upon it, every sun that sets behind it.

God is the souls of the dying, as they take their final breath, bringing them peace. God is around all who have already passed on, those who are 'in the process' and those who are left behind. Even those who choose to think they may not believe. God is there in every struggle overcome and in those that sometimes overcome us. God is there when we feel so alone and God is there when we finally start to open our eyes.

God is to be found when we least expect to find anyone. Sometimes God simply comes to us from reaching out into a terrifying, all-encompassing, heart-stopping darkness, when suddenly you find yourself being held so damned strongly, by hands you never even knew existed.

All you have to do, is invite God in, then watch the eyes and souls of those you begin to touch.

For God is catching! :-)

And right now, we need God more than we have ever done before, to bring back compassion, kindness, empathy, wisdom and understanding, because for way too long now so many of us have shut all thought of God out.

God is no colour, nor race, nor sex, nor name. God simply 'is' and why should God make things easier? That part, my friend, God leaves entirely up to us to do.


"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." - Martin Luther King Jr.

God Matters - We have been silent too long.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 06:53 PM

And, just to sum up the real deal behind all this, please remember:

God is a verb




A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 06:58 PM

"...", and you may quote me.

Joe! You are worshipping a tree now? Well, Ok! As you are peering off into the West, that's me over there on Cow Mountain, about 1/3 the way up waving at you! Worship the Creator, not the creation! Cheers! God bless.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:06 PM

"Surely 'He' could make it easier???"

Ed, would you explain "it", please?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:12 PM

I just logged onto an internet forum I hadn't visited in quite some time. I'd even forgotten my password. Anyway, I couldn't help but notice that it gave the option to stay logged on for anywhere (anywhen?) from 6 hours, up to (and I quote), "forever".

Cool.

So, you know, for me clicking "forever" was just an unexpected change of future address. For agnostics, though, it would be totally mind-blowing.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: john f weldon
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:19 PM

The concept of God is not merely wrong, it is despicable. God does not exist, but if he did, it would be necessary to destroy him.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:23 PM

"God does not exist, but if he did, it would be necessary to destroy him."

And the converse is . . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: bobad
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:31 PM

Converse


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 07:34 PM

john - The despicable and vicious "God" that you would wish to see destroyed is simply the bizarre version of "God" that you have made up in your own imagination...based on your impression of whatever the heck kind of weird, twisted thing it is that you have convinced yourself that somebody else out there is imagining.

As such, you're tied to your subjective version of someone else's hypothetical fantasy life and are imagining that it is all there is to be said about the matter. You're reacting to a mental boogeyman that you yourself created out of thin air. That makes you at about the same level as the people you're so upset about....a fanatic who is complaining about another fanatic's fanaticism.

If someone hadn't bit you on the arse in some manner connected with religion at some time in the past I doubt you'd be worrying about it now the way you are.

WHAT concept of God?

Hell, there must be 100,000 different concepts of God out there. Most of them have probably never even crossed your mind.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Jeri
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 08:01 PM

John Hardly, that would make a lovely song:

Can I take my cookie to Heaven
And stay eternally logged in?
If I do not troll, when they call the roll
Of those who resisted sin,
Will I be one of the honored
And type with familiar handle
In Heaven, my dial-up will not work
But wireless broadband'll

(Sorry. Back to the serious stuff.)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 08:12 PM

Rhyming "handle" with "broadband'll" is a stroke of genius. LOL!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 10:33 PM

Ed: The Secret...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_b1GKGWJbE8
Consider the expression, "he has lost his mind..." What this means is that YOU have chosen to hold thoughts which are not in alignment for your greater good. Once you change your direction/perception of reality, your world will change. Thoughts are THINGS. You create your own reality...
I don't remember where I picked this up, or if I created it, but it goes like this..."If you have your head stuck in a bucket of sh&t; why are you surprised, that when you open your eyes, you see brown?" Terse. but effective...
You might want to explore Charles F. Haanel,"The Master Key"...
Also, Prentice Mulford & Wallace Wattles
The answer is there waiting for you...
"Who do you think you are, a Superstar? Then. Right you are! - John Lennon
"Whether you think you can, or cannot, either way, you're right! - Henry Ford
"Say the secret word and the duck will come down and give you $100...Groucho Marx...
"Truly I say to you, if you had faith as of a mustard seed, you could tell this mountain to jump into the sea..." - Well -You know who...

The hard part with all of this is that you must train your mind, even in the face of poverty, to feel/think, ABUNDANCE...
In the face of disease, HEALTH..
Etc.
Or, as the centurian asked of Jesus, "Master, if you would but touch my cloak, I would be healed." Then Jesus replies,"what do you mean, IF?"
NAMASTE...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:35 AM

Please, all take note at my restraint. Take note of God's restraint. As the Word says "Let the heathen rage".

Chongo, tell me what it is that LH is imagining, or is LH just a figment of YOUR imagination? You DO like figs, don't you? Try 'em with mint.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Chongo Chimp
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:57 AM

I don't waste my time tryin' to figure out what LH is imaginin'. A fool's errand! I got way too much work to spend my time on that. Gotta pay the rent, y' know. Me, I don't question the existence of God, but I think people got it partly wrong in the Creation story and that stuff about the Ark. I'll say this, though, the Garden of Eden was in Africa. Was. It ain't there no more. Somebody told me it was to be found now in Atlantic City, but that turned out to be a big lie. The same guy that told me that ended up in jail for fraud, tax evasion, and grand larceny, so that shows ya how reliable he is! Ook! Ook!

- Chongo


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:08 AM

I would not expect Chongo to know what it is that I imagine....or to care.

But I know what he imagines. Shall I tell you? Shall I tell you the lurid things that Chongo spends his spare moments imagining?

Naw...he'd get really embarrassed. I couldn't do that to a pal.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 03:39 AM

Slag, I don' worship no trees.
I just ponder my Ponderosa....


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 05:58 AM

Ed - why don't you choose your own concept of God ?

God, as you understand God ?

I follow the path of Wicca, so that I find God in every living creature, and even in the inanimate : a flight of birds ; cloud formations ; new growth on trees ; the light in my grandsons' eyes ; my daughter's smile ; my beloved's laughter lines ; the purring of my pussy cats; rainbows ; sunsets ; etc.

Should I need to "anthropomorphise" that which is sacred to me, I think on the Great Mother, and the All Father.

I do not try to proselytise, but one saw of Wicca runs :

". . . if that which thou seekest thou findest not within thee, thou wilt never find it without (outside) thee . . . "

Wise and Blessed Be. Kind regards, Bryn


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 11:25 AM

I don't 'hate' these kinds of discussions. I do hate that some people become so emotional and rejecting of each other in them.

My observation is that most of us don't become hateful, but once a couple or three do, a couple-three others become highly emotional about that and immediately accuse everybody of being unkind/bitter/hateful, when in fact it's just the usual few, often named 'Guest', though not always.

I like discussing religions. Because I am not a believer, I am out of step with most of the people in the world. Why wouldn't I be endlessly curious about why this difference exists, between those like me and those not like me? Why wouldn't I enjoy discussing why I don't believe and someone else does?

And Joe, aren't you pigeonholing people yourself? Quote: "I hate these religion threads. I tell people I'm a believer because that is what I am; but I've found that when most people hear I'm a believer, they then pigeonhole me into whatever their understanding of belief is - in many cases, that seems to mean they think that I'm some sort of rigid automaton, marching to the drum of some demagogue. "

The vast majority of unbelievers like me are surrounded by families and friends who are believers. Do you really think we feel that way about our own beloeved families? Do you think we are so insular that we can't project our feelings and understanding of our families out in to the world of other people?

I don't understand the broad accusation of atheists being insulting, scornful of the religious, one-note-Johnnies. There are people on Mudcat who are very outspoken and adamant in defense of their beliefs. I often disagree with them, I might even think the direction in which their belief takes them is in some sense dangerous, or even inhumane. But I am perfectly aware of other aspects of their lives and personalities. They play music. They have families and pets. They have interesting and creative hobbies. They are known to do very generous things. Exactly like the subset of Atheist/Agnostic/Pantheist posters here. Exactly the things I like about people, the things that make them diverse and the things that they hold in common.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 11:32 AM

I agree with you, Bee. However, more input from the thread originator would be nice, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 11:44 AM

Good post there, Bryn.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 11:56 AM

nice post, Bee.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 12:09 PM

Yeah, that too.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: maeve
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 12:12 PM

Hey katlaughing- I haven't thought about Dr. Trueblood for years! My family knew him when I was very young.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D._Elton_Trueblood


And another of his quotes for Joe-
http://www.whatquote.com/quotes/D--Elton-Trueblood/12438-A-man-has-made-at-le.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:04 PM

I used to be a hardcore atheist. The scientific explanations offered through cosmology and evolutionary biology make much more sense to me than the folkloric creation myths which pass as "truth" for billions of people.

But there's a point at which scientific explanations no longer work. For me, that point comes when one ponders the nature of human consciousness. Attempting to understand what it truly means to be a conscious human being by using science alone just doesn't work. It makes more sense to me to believe that human consciousness is, in some way, a manifestation of something larger. Some people choose to call it "God", I choose not to. I don't try to define it, I don't worship it or pray to it, and I don't think of it as a moral compass beyond a general feeling that if each of us is a part of it, we should treat each other as such.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:20 PM

I agree with you on that very much, BWL. Well said.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:22 PM

Yeah, that's about the same process I went through, Bee-Dub.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: john f weldon
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:26 PM

Wow, I just finished my latest musical-video; and when I came back to check out this thread, I find you're on to consciousness, which is, in fact, the topic of the video.

Coincidence? Or Divine Intervention???

Heisenstadter

Anyway, a good excuse to post this link!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:26 PM

I guess I still don't get it. I cannot CHOOSE to believe in things I don't believe in - unicorns, leprechauns, supreme beings, it's all fairy tales to me. If one WANTED to believe, how does one take the leap?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Appaloosa Lady
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:28 PM

"In the midst of winter, I finally learned there was in me an invincible summer" - Albert Camus

That's the point of realisation, for me at least.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:31 PM

wonderful post BWL. Must have come to you while throwing.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:41 PM

"...unicorns, leprechauns, supreme beings"

This falls under #5 "Argument from Personal Incredulity", #7 "Confusing the currently unexplained with the unexplainable", and #8 "False Continuum". At LEAST those three.

1.        Ad hominem An ad hominem argument is any that attempts to counter another's claims or conclusions by attacking the person, rather than addressing the argument itself. True believers will often commit this fallacy by countering the arguments of skeptics by stating that skeptics are closed minded. Skeptics, on the other hand, may fall into the trap of dismissing the claims of UFO believers, for example, by stating that people who believe in UFO's are crazy or stupid.

2. Ad ignorantum The argument from ignorance basically states that a specific belief is true because we don't know that it isn't true. Defenders of extrasensory perception, for example, will often overemphasize how much we do not know about the human brain. UFO proponents will often argue that an object sighted in the sky is unknown, and therefore it is an alien spacecraft.

3. Argument from authority Stating that a claim is true because a person or group of perceived authority says it is true. Often this argument is implied by emphasizing the many years of experience, or the formal degrees held by the individual making a specific claim. It is reasonable to give more credence to the claims of those with the proper background, education, and credentials, or to be suspicious of the claims of someone making authoritative statements in an area for which they cannot demonstrate expertise. But the truth of a claim should ultimately rest on logic and evidence, not the authority of the person promoting it. Another way this is seen from time to time is when the authority cited is cited for his/her brilliance, but not as it relates to the subject at hand; For instance: the Albert Einstein bumper sticker – "You Cannot Simultaneously Prevent And Prepare For War". It should be obvious, but doesn't always occur to one, that there is nothing about Einstein's particular genius that makes him more qualified (than the average Joe) to talk about geopolitics

4. Argument from final Consequences Such arguments (also called teleological) are based on a reversal of cause and effect, because they argue that something is caused by the ultimate effect that it has, or purpose that is serves. For example: God must exist, because otherwise life would have no meaning.

5. Argument from Personal Incredulity I cannot explain or understand this, therefore it cannot be true. Creationists are fond of arguing that they cannot imagine the complexity of life resulting from blind evolution, but that does not mean life did not evolve.

6. Confusing association with causation This is similar to the post-hoc fallacy in that it assumes cause and effect for two variables simply because they are correlated, although the relationship here is not strictly that of one variable following the other in time. This fallacy is often used to give a statistical correlation a causal interpretation. For example, during the 1990s both religious attendance and illegal drug use have been on the rise. It would be a fallacy to conclude that therefore, religious attendance causes illegal drug use. It is also possible that drug use leads to an increase in religious attendance, or that both drug use and religious attendance are increased by a third variable, such as an increase in societal unrest. It is also possible that both variables are independent of one another, and it is mere coincidence that they are both increasing at the same time. A corollary to this is the invocation of this logical fallacy to argue that an association does not represent causation; rather it is more accurate to say that correlation does not necessarily mean causation, but it can. Also, multiple independent correlations can point reliably to causation, and is a reasonable line of argument.

7. Confusing currently unexplained with unexplainable Because we do not currently have an adequate explanation for a phenomenon does not mean that it is forever unexplainable or that it therefore defies the laws of nature or requires a paranormal explanation.

8. False Continuum The idea that because there is no definitive demarcation line between two extremes, that the distinction between the extremes is not real or meaningful: It would be like saying that since there seems to be a fuzzy line between cults and religion, therefore the two are really the same thing.

9. False Dichotomy Arbitrarily reducing a set of many possibilities to only two. This is constantly seen in politics where only two "black and white" propositions are presented as the only possible solutions when there could, in reality, be any number of better solutions from an expanded pool of answers.

10. Inconsistency Applying criteria or rules to one belief, claim, argument, or position but not to others. For example, some consumer advocates argue that we need stronger regulation of prescription drugs to ensure their safety and effectiveness, but at the same time argue that medicinal herbs should be sold with no regulation for either safety or effectiveness. Of course, the corollary fallacy is the "But he/she did it first!", wherein an inconsistency in arbitration leads to the claim that the basis for one's "correctness" is that it exceeds, or at least matches a previous (but obviously wrong) action by another (see Tu quoque, below).

11. The Moving Goalpost A method of denial arbitrarily moving the criteria for "proof" or acceptance of said "proof" out of range of whatever evidence currently exists.

12. Non-Sequitur In Latin this term translates to "doesn't follow". This refers to an argument in which the conclusion does not necessarily follow from the premises. In other words, a logical connection is implied where none exists.

13. Post-hoc ergo propter hoc This fallacy follows the basic format of: A preceded B, therefore A caused B, and therefore assumes cause and effect for two events just because they are temporally related (the latin translates to "after this, therefore because of this").   If a fellow dies after eating green beans, it doesn't follow that the green beans were the cause of death.

14. Reductio ad absurdum These arguments assume that if an argument is valid, it necessarily means that the most extreme example of that argument must also be valid. A UFO enthusiast once argued that if I am skeptical about the existence of alien visitors, I must also be skeptical of the existence of the Great Wall of China, since I have not personally seen either. He therefore tried to take my skepticism to an absurd extreme in order to invalidate any skepticism.

15. Slippery Slope This logical fallacy is the argument that a position is not consistent or tenable because accepting the position means that the extreme of the position must also be accepted. But moderate positions do not necessarily lead down the slippery slope to the extreme.

16. Straw Man Arguing against a position which you create specifically to be easy to argue against, rather than the position actually held by those who oppose your point of view.

17. Special pleading, or ad-hoc reasoning This is a subtle fallacy which is often difficult to recognize. In essence, it is the arbitrary introduction of new elements into an argument in order to fix them so that they appear valid. A good example of this is the ad-hoc dismissal of negative test results. For example, one might point out that ESP has never been demonstrated under adequate test conditions, therefore ESP is not a genuine phenomenon. Defenders of ESP have attempted to counter this argument by introducing the arbitrary premise that ESP does not work in the presence of skeptics. This fallacy is often taken to ridiculous extremes, and more and more bizarre ad hoc elements are added to explain experimental failures or logical inconsistencies.

18. Tautology A tautology is an argument that utilizes circular reasoning, which means that the conclusion is also its own premise. The structure of such arguments is A=B therefore A=B, although the premise and conclusion might be formulated differently so it is not immediately apparent as such. For example, saying that therapeutic touch works because it manipulates the life force is a tautology because the definition of therapeutic touch is the alleged manipulation (without touching) of the life force.

19. Tu quoque Literally, you too. This is an attempt to justify wrong action because someone else also does it. "My evidence may be invalid, but so is yours."

20. Unstated Major Premise This fallacy occurs when one makes an argument which assumes a premise which is not explicitly stated. For example, arguing that we should label food products with their cholesterol content because Americans have high cholesterol assumes that: 1) cholesterol in food causes high serum cholesterol; 2) labeling will reduce consumption of cholesterol; and 3) that having a high serum cholesterol is unhealthy. This fallacy is also sometimes called begging the question.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 01:56 PM

"It makes more sense to me to believe that human consciousness is, in some way, a manifestation of something larger." - Bee-dubya-ell

I am able to understand thinking and feeling this way, moreso than I understand conventional God beliefs.

But I don't really see human consciousness as inexplicable biologically. The whole is greater than its parts, therefore, consciousness, I think.

I have an affinity for mammals, wild and domestic. I've never been close to a mammal that I didn't sense was 'other', individual, in the same manner in which another human is 'other'. I don't mean that a cow or bear or cat thinks as humans think, or is emotional on the same gradient humans are, but they do think, and do exhibit emotions, and my thought is always 'there but for a chance of evolution go I'. So if human consciousness is a manifestation of something larger, I have to think that so is the more basic, less convoluted, consciousness of all those other critters.

This is a serious component of my reasons for being agnostic. When it comes to First Causes, I don't know, can't even guess, if Something with a larger consciousness directed that. But when it comes to my fellow warm-bloods, I definitely cannot conceive of a well meaning First Cause/Deity which deliberately would elevate my species over another to the tune of giving us that little extra invisible something referred to usually as a soul.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:10 PM

Would someone be kind enough to message me if Guest,Ed ever answers my question? If so, thank you. If not, I tried. And thank you.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:15 PM

Quantum Physics & Conciousness...

For the intellectual, it is "arguments" & "proofs". For the Catholic. It is Faith & Jesus. For the Wiccan it is "Magick". For the Atheist. It is reliance upon self. And as we stroll through Religions, beliefs, faiths and arguments, it merely enforces Truth; that we are all part of some form of ONE, for which as many names have been created, as there are minds to create...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqJOIQWkfWA
How strong and powerful is your faith or belief? That will indicate to you your experiences...And willingness to explore other concepts...

Life is hard? Well, of COURSE life is hard if that is the perception you entertain. You need only to change your "frequency", and entertain the thought of a world of possibilities, no matter what your situation may be. Then, possibilities become your reality...

"What would you do with your life if you KNEW you could not fail?...."

YOU are "God" (I and the Father are One...")

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:17 PM

"I and the Father are One"

If that's true, shouldn't it read "I and the Father is One"?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:33 PM

And if i was a rappa..."I and da Fatha AM one..." It is what it is. and what it is shall be." Get down and get back up again...Step back...Kiss myself.... Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. Take it to the bridge...FONK ME! DA Da DA da dit. FEEL DA RHYTHM....Let the band take off...And now, ladies and gentlemen, the Godfather of Soul...Mr. James Brown....

"This is a man's world. But it wouldn't be nuthin', without a woman or a girl..."

James KNEW who he was....


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Wesley S
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:39 PM

"Guest Ed" left a long time ago. Suggesting he might be a troll.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:42 PM

He might be looking for his bucket...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM

Ed: Tough Love Bro...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:46 PM

Peace for the win.

I watched the video, which I assume is lifted from the movie "What the Bleep do We Know". I know nothing from Quantum Physics. When I want to try to understand something, like how to read music, I go looking for people who know (as per example) how to read music, to explain it to me.

So, being curious about the premises of that movie (so presumably this video), I went looking for people who are physicists, and who do understand quantum physics/mechanics. It looked to me that the majority of them were not happy at all with the erroneous (according to their expertise) presentations, explanations, and conclusions drawn by the movie makers.

Which is not to deny that the deeper we explore the fabric of the universe we know, the weirder things get from our limited perspective (which becomes less limited everytime someone like those same physicists amkes a discovery). And none of which speculations, IMO, imply or do not imply the notion of a conscious (or unconscious) First Cause.

But I will not, cannot, succumb to woo, be it the woo of established religion or the woo of quantum mechanics or the woo of animism. I shouldda been from Missouri.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 02:56 PM

WOO WOO to You...

Sid Caesar did an interview one time where he stated that he was depressed. "I had everything, a hit show, lots of money, I could have anything...but I still wasn't happy."
Then he went on about someone he met who brought him out of his depression.."I figured out that when I put my thoughts over here(points to the left, indicating concentration on being unhappy), All I had to do was look over here(looks to right) concentrating on happiness. And that was it. Ridiculously simple."

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Megan L
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 03:04 PM

Duh why did ye think the bible says:

Philippians 4:8
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 03:12 PM

Yes Megan...The Bible holds many truths...

And as we develop an "attitude of gratitude" for the things/blessings we already have, we find that we have more to be grateful for...

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 05:47 PM

Bravo, John Hardly, for that lengthy post on all the various illegitimate forms of argumentation that people use to attack someone else's position on something.

I have saved it for future reference. It is THE answer to most of the unreasonable arguments I see advanced daily on this forum by people intent on proving that their form of belief is superior to someone else's.

Bee - You said,"I have an affinity for mammals, wild and domestic. I've never been close to a mammal that I didn't sense was 'other', individual, in the same manner in which another human is 'other'. I don't mean that a cow or bear or cat thinks as humans think, or is emotional on the same gradient humans are, but they do think, and do exhibit emotions, and my thought is always 'there but for a chance of evolution go I'. So if human consciousness is a manifestation of something larger, I have to think that so is the more basic, less convoluted, consciousness of all those other critters."

Yes! Of course. Your conclusion seems eminently sensible to me, and that's the way I see it. An animal's consciousness IS, like a human consciousness, a manifestation of something larger. The same something. Just to a different degree, that's all.

Then you said, "This is a serious component of my reasons for being agnostic. When it comes to First Causes, I don't know, can't even guess, if Something with a larger consciousness directed that. But when it comes to my fellow warm-bloods, I definitely cannot conceive of a well meaning First Cause/Deity which deliberately would elevate my species over another to the tune of giving us that little extra invisible something referred to usually as a soul."

Neither can I conceive of it. I think everything has a soul. Every human, every animal, every plant, every microbe, everything. Either that...or nothing does.

Again, the various souls would most likely be at different levels of consciousness, that's all. Each one existing at its own unique level, just as each thing has its own unique nature in every other respect as well.

This does not imply some kind of favoritism "from on High". ;-) It simply implies the expression of a vast variety of possibilities or potentials, all of which tend to manifest in their own fashion in some particular time or place.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 06:02 PM

LH

You're welcome, but I can't take credit for it.   As it came to me, it wasn't very good, and I've re-written lots of it, but I had it emailed to me some time ago.   But it's a fairly useful list. I've actually since seen better, more comprehensive lists like it. Probably most of us remember having been presented with such a list in Jr High or High School.

Anyway, I find that not only is that list useful, but it's also useful to realize that many of those "fallacies" don't actually disprove" something. Most of them just call into question the reason one might believe something -- or the faulty way one might be, rather than seeking truth, merely trying to win an arguement (by "cheating").


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 06:05 PM

LH

You're welcome, but I can't take credit for it.   As it came to me, it wasn't very good, and I've re-written lots of it, but I had it emailed to me some time ago.   But it's a fairly useful list. I've actually since seen better, more comprehensive lists like it. Probably most of us remember having been presented with such a list in Jr High or High School.

Anyway, I find that not only is that list useful, but it's also useful to realize that many of those "fallacies" don't actually "disprove" something. Most of them just call into question the reason one might believe something -- or the faulty way one might be, rather than seeking truth, merely trying to win an arguement (by "cheating").


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 06:07 PM

Show off.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 06:17 PM

I use the clapper. That way it's just as easy to "show on" too.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 09:43 PM

ÒThe president of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. If he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ridiculous or offensive.Ó

Sam Harris


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 Mar 08 - 10:47 PM

Bob, thanks for your further postings. I esp, liked this: Our beliefs about who we are, and what is real, are not simply observations, but rather form ourselves and our realities.

Bee, I am in complete agreement with you and LH. To me, everything has a consciousness and it behoves us to honour that and treat it with care. I have known this, "felt it" since I was a little, little girl.

I have also seen, time and again, proof positive about being gratefull (sic), giving thanks, and being careful with our words, thoughts, and visualizations. When we do so, we honour our higher conciousness or whatever one wants to call it. We get back whatever put out there, negative or positive.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:17 AM

Thank you Mr. Hardly! IF folks would just bother to learn the informal fallacies it would improve the serious discussions of this forum by an order of magnitude.

As in all the threads which hit around this subject, God as defined becomes the major premise. It is how one defines and presents deity that deserves the analysis and scrutiny. Beware of the "closed system", that is a system of thought which answers everything from within the system and thereby demonstrating a private language. Truth must be able to stand on its own without insulation.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:14 AM

"IF folks would just bother to learn the informal fallacies it would improve the serious discussions of this forum by an order of magnitude"

I've always thought that if they were in a permathread at the top of the mudcat that everyone had to read before posting, the discussions might be completely different around here.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,UNbrainwashed
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:55 AM

From the time I was born my parents, the church and my school brainwashed me into the belief of god's existence until I was 18 years old. They used sacraments, prayers, mantras, bibles, other religious books and continuous church attendances. My only defence against all of that was logic and after many years I concluded there is no God. Of course I felt guilty about winning the mental arguement but the sense of freedom more than compensates for that.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 07:02 AM

Damn John......I was all messed up on that stuff and now I have to go back and read all 423,491 contentious threads again so I know what was really going on! See I figured that the first one had something to do with adding a can of hominy to your argument or amaybe something just corny. Some of the others were a shock to me too!

7. Confusing currently unexplained with unexplainable ---- I still think this one means not knowing Jack Shit

8. False Continuum --- Why anyone would want to use artificial condoms to argue with I never did know so this was real helpful!

9. False Dichotomy ---- See, this was the fake dick you used with the fake condom above.

11. The Moving Goalpost --- Damn but I'm stupid. I thought this one was obvious but once again...............***sigh***..........

12. Non-Sequitur ---- So this has nothing to do with all the Sequin Mines around Nashville huh?

15. Slippery Slope ---- I should've figured this had nothin' to do with sled riding........

16. Straw Man ---- It was kinda' sad to learn the truth here as I always had this nice image of Ray Bolger in "The Wizard of Oz."

17. Special pleading, or ad-hoc reasoning ---- And here I mistook "reasoning" as "seasoning" and thought someone wanted another ham hock thrown in the bean soup.

19. Tu quoque ---- Not some Rapper then I guess......


Thanks again John. I'm gonna' get to studying on these real hard!!!

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 08:01 AM

I reckon believung in god helps you to look young, eg-
Cliff Richard believes in god, and he's about 100 years old, but he only looks about 70.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 08:04 AM

Aled Jones as well, he's about 40, but he only looks about 15,(well he did last time i saw him on telly anyway, he's on the wireless now, so i've not seen him for a while.)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 09:50 AM

Spaw,

Arguement from Quo-Quo-Quo-choo unfounded belief that the song "Imagine" is great music because John Lennon wrote it.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 12:56 PM

Thanks Kat: I often wonder if the posts are even read by other posters. As you can see from the dialogue, each has created what is for them, reality. For some, no God. Others yes, in a myriad of forms.
A study was done in Japan a few years back, where scientists tested a piece of metal with electrodes while someone was projecting their thoughts TO THE PIECE OF METAL. What they found that as hatred/negativity created a molecular change within the metal. Subsequently, thoughts of Love projected toward the metal created another type of molecular, verifiable change. So, it could be said that metal thinks/feels...
So for some, "my car is a piece of sh&t...", for others, "it's my baby"..So one car goes to the scrap heap, the other becomes a vintage automobile. The difference? One got Hate. The other, LOVE. It was all in the thinking...
There was a book called "The Secret Life of Plants" where similar observations were outlined.
As any gardener knows, the "green thumb" is the reality of the great gardener. A simple love of what you do...Same for the great chefs, etc.
People like Dick Clark and Cliff Richard have always "Thought Young" with Mr. Clark being "the world's oldest teenager..." But think for a minute what is going on, both men have surrounded themselves with youthful activities, Rock & Roll, still being in the public eye, so "youth" stays with them, and is their reality.
So the message of "God is in all things" rings true, although abstract.
So, how can you test this for yourself? Easy. Begin with this experiment...CREATE YOUR DAY. Watch your thoughts. In the morning, allow yourself to only concentrate on happiness. And when those thoughts of "what about the bills, doctors, troubles" come to mind, train yourself to think that there is a solution for everything. And entertain the thought that 'all will work out for greater good" The operative word here is BELIEF/FAITH. If you withdraw that, you will sink into negativity, and that will become your reality.
This is how the Oprah Winfreys, Tiger Woods, Sir Richard Bransons of the world got to be who they are. They are not thinking about the next welfare cheque or poverty. They live, breath, FEEL, wealth and success. THAT IS ALL THEY CONCENTRATE ON, so, that IS their reality. And so you might say, "Boo Hoo Hoo, but THEY got all the money and power, and all I got is...STOP right there. You just talked yourself into the reality of "NOT HAVE". Change that. Start by being grateful for what you have, and build your life from there. Thought by Thought, day by day.
Do you think that any great sports figure, artist, entrepreneur, financier gets up in the morning and says, "this is a great day to lose?" Would not happen. Could not happen.
"The Lord(Law) is my Shepherd, I shall not want..." Do you think that is the raving of a lunatic? No my friends, it is higher truth, hidden from you in parables. A teaching so profound, that given to the right individual, would be life/world changing..
Guard your thoughts...
bob

Anyone interested might consider the writing of Florence Scovil Schinn - "The Power of the Word..."


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: skarpi
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:08 PM

100


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:09 PM

Bob:

Can you provide a link to the paper, article or whatever documenting those observations in Japan a few years back?


Thanks,


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: skarpi
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:14 PM

I really would.

Surely 'He' could make it easier???
who says its " he " not Her??

what easier ??? the life ??? things are ment to be , deal with it

a propblem is not a problem its a task to deal with . believe in you
and the task is solved .

what is god , who is god , what is it for , ?? and who says the holy bible is the right book ?? or the koran ?

the are so many questions for to be answaerd, I cannot , maybe someone can .

But God ???? I wonder ........

ATB Skarpi


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:19 PM

Amos: I think it was from a newspaper article that might be 20+ years old. I'm really not sure of it's age. I was trying to think of the reference to substantiate it. But, I couldn't. Part of the info in my subconscious. It's out there somewhere...bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:20 PM

"Danny Boy banned in pub...."


Hope that helps you, Guest,Ed.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 01:41 PM

Amos: Found this...
http://www.spiritofmaat.com/archive/aug1/consciouswater.html

I've been looking around for the "thought projected into metal" article as it comes from the scientific community, and would offer another perspective...

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 02:44 PM

QUite so, Bob -- I have read the material on psychic water crystals before. Unfortunately I find too many assertions without provided explanations, and the photographic evidence provided does not strike me as reliable.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 03:42 PM

Amos: "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink..."

Trying to "measure" or "test" this would be like asking "God"....Hey God! Those trees and mountains and oceans and everything, they told me YOU did all of that. But I'm waiting here with MY pencil, computer, camera, lab equipment and mind and I want you to PROVE to me that it was you who did it!
God might reply, "Looking at the trees and oceans and stuff isn't enough?" Let's see YOU do it.
What makes me laugh is when I look at all the "scientific studies" on how the pyramids were formed or if life exists on other planets. And, all the tech stuff one would have to do to accomplish building such structures or to travel to other worlds.
The problem with all of that is that it is limited to the consciousness of the operator. What if your tools, tests, and instruments are just not capable of testing that which was created by a higher intelligence? One theory is that the pyramids were created with sound. Yep, sound. Apparently weighted objects become weightless when a specific vibration of sound is projected at them. Hence, building a pyramid would be a "walk in the park" for those with that knowledge.
Einstein purported that space travel was relative to the speed of light, but what if there was another propulsion system that went way past the speed of light? What would the caveman have thought if he were shown a computer? Magic? God? His intellect and consciousness cannot cope with a higher level of thought. All HIS references revert to what he knows, primitive sticks, rocks, hunt for food. If you SHOWED him a computer and PROVED to him it was possible to communicate at great distances, he would think it's a trick and go back to what for him, is comfortable. What he knows, thinks, sees, feels...

You can almost hear other life forms observing us, " Hey VROK! Check this! Look at stupid earthling "scientist" trying to figure out our propulsion system! HA HA hA HA HEE HEE. The idiot is using; get this VROK, his COMPUTER! HA hA hA. Can you BELIEVE these stupids? And, and, listen to me VROK; the guy is trying it with his mind on the "LOCKED" position! MWAH HA HA HA hA HA HEEHEE..
Anybody with a brain would know you can't possibly test our Grn567yu45j with Microsoft VISTA! It's like, they aren't even smart enough to figure out they aren't even in the parking lot of ZETA4Qs travel. What pathetic creatures. I suppose we should vaporize them, or feed them to our pets. But hey, let's be kind and let them struggle with it for another 100 years, they can only hurt themselves...Until they evolve..."

Come out of the cave...<:0)
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Appaloosa Lady
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 03:59 PM

Phew! Bob!

I curtsey to you, in sheer admiration.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 04:00 PM

Sure, pal. ALways glad to jump out of the cave. Let me know if you can find that reference on metallic molecular deformation.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 04:36 PM

Well SAID, Bob!

The real problem with most human egos is that they are so unwilling to admit how little they really know...and the possibility that there is much out there which they cannot even begin to explain with their present science and their present understanding.

I have encountered things no one can explain...oh, but tell them about it, and listen to them bury you under a half hour of specious and empty explanations as to how the thing you told them about must have been "a hallucination"...or some such familiar notion that their conventional mind spits out of its tiny lexicon of "approved subjects".

Tiresome, and often quite infuriating. I just don't bother telling them anymore unless I know very well who I'm talking to and whether they have some humility and respect set aside for other people's experiences. It's not worth listening to the inane and predictable responses one gets from conventional know-it-alls who think they already have a "scientific" answer for everything.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:24 PM

"The real problem with most human egos is that they are so unwilling to admit how little they really know"

LH,

That's just not true. I'm MORE than willing to admit how much you really don't know.

I'm going to have to categorize that under one of those Logic Fallicies, or make up a new one to cover it.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:25 PM

That was also post #111. It's the new 100.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:28 PM

There are ten kinds of people in the world: Those who understand binary and those who don't.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Donuel
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:33 PM

Logic aside, when you are privy to the secrets of the universe the truth is all you need. The truth is God is a great gooey worm Booglabah and we are but parasites in his gut. I say 'his' despite the fact that the great gooey worm is asexual.
Our prayers if united are enough to cause the great gooey worm gas but thats about it. Strange as it seems, we and other parasites have a higher degree of intelligence and consciousness than our Great Worm Booglabah (GWB).


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: catspaw49
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:42 PM

Some awfully deep thoughts on this thread but how and what does all this have to do with why you get the shits from eating cabbage?

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:49 PM

CABBAGE? I though it was cribbage.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 05:52 PM

You, don't, Spaw...unless you're a sinful, jerk-off, wastrel dumbass who richly deserves suffering extended intestinal discomfort. No one I know ever gets "the shits" from eating cabbage. I certainly don't. I've hardly ever heard of anyone who does. But if you do, well, now you know why... ;-) Now prunes, on the other hand, almost anyone gets the shits from eating prunes.

John, you couldn't possibly have insight into how much I really don't know. Your nervous system is not large enough to hold that volume of not known (by me) information.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:09 PM

"Your nervous system is not large enough to hold that volume of not known (by me) information."

According to Peace (if I understand him....and how dangerous is THAT?!), I could fathom the depths of your ignorance if I but learned binary something, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah....

(I can never bring myself to actually finish reading any of his shit)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:10 PM

"I can never bring myself to actually finish reading any of his shit"

That's from another thread, John.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:12 PM

So...you think you can fathom the depths of my ignorance, do you?

Well, I'll say this, you're ambitious! ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:15 PM

0.0018288 kilometers is equal to one fathom. FYI.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:19 PM

Don't be dissin' caves, man. Caves are home, where the fire keeps the dark and the sabre-tooths at bay. Caves are where you can sit and think and play with the babies, and tame that wolf cub you brought home. Caves are where you can watch the firelight flicker on the rock walls, until you say, hey that would look just like an antelope if I touched up with a little charcoal...just... here.. Caves are where you notice this particular dark grey rock is the very best for making tools. Caves are where you feel safe enough to drink that piss-and-muscaria tea that wandering shaman told you about. Caves are about beginnings and great leaps of cognition and imagination.

Higher beings? Building the pyramids with thought or sound? People did use thought and sound and sight, and their skilled hands, to build the pyramids. We have written records, papyri, with some of the accounts, including a renegotiated agreement with a group of workers who demanded a larger allotment of onions as part of the deal, and got it. Those people deserve a little credit, a little admiration, for their accomplishments, IMO.

Or maybe I got a little cynical, a little jaded, around 1969 or 70, watching friends fall into cults, Children of God, Divine Light Mission, Pseudo-Paganism, or vanish into communes with some semi-charismatic, always male, 'spiritual leader'. Some of them didn't get back. Some of the women emerged later with a couple of kids, no education and not a penny to their names, just some tie-dye rags and a lot of ways to cook brown rice. Struggling for years, working low income jobs and still wearing a magic crystal around their necks.

I ran into one of those communes still in operation in 1982, same guy running it for more than ten years, people hanging on his every word. "'Gavin' says I'm not purified enough". "Gavin believes we should practice this method of meditation/crystaldivination/sex". Gavin wants me to work in the town for a while." "Gavin says I'm too attached to the material plane..." Practicing the art of division - you can stay but your partner is too whatever. Herbal doctoring - kids with chronic infections, one woman nearly lost her eyesight while I was there. After a couple visits, I wasn't allowed back - too spiritually disruptive.

I've seen communes that worked, as well. The ones that encouraged people to get educated besides keeping the gardens going. The ones that were about being close to the earth and being equal and raising happy, healthy kids. The ones where nobody was insisting on everybody being 'spiritual' but let you believe whatever you want, as long as no one was harmed.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:20 PM

Amos: It is with the utmost respect for you that I tell you these things. Namaste.The mind is a radio. It is capable of transcending distance and time. The Trobriand Islanders knew this hundreds of years ago and used telepathy to communicate. Until the white man interjected his belief that such things were not possible. The Voodoo practitioners use it to manipulate energy. Max Freedom Long talked about it at length in his "A Course in Miracles."
Rather than have me show you the article about consciousness being projected into metal, may I suggest a little experiment?
Let me get a little "David Blaine" with you, as a kind of, well, interesting interlude. Your mind has three levels. The Conscious, Subconscious, and Superconcious. If you are willing to participate. Now willing is the operative word here. Without Belief or Faith it won't work. Now, I don't know where you are, not even what country. But sit down in a chair and watch the breath coming out of your nose. Is it coming from the left or right nostril? You will see it changes back and forth between the two, every couple of hours...Now ask your subconscious, that's the mind that we will work with...Talk to it like a friend, and ask it to show YOU where to find the article about consciousness being projected into metal from Japan. Make it a sincere request and visualize the request floating off into space. The request MUST be sincere. Let it go. Go about your business and once in a while during the day, ask your subconcious to show you the article.
Now I'm going out on a limb with this for sure, but hey. I've been laughed at by professionals. The article should present itself to you, either through a friend, phone call, surfing the net etc. Let's see what happens...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: beardedbruce
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:24 PM

And if it doesn't, you obviously were not sincere enough.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:42 PM

"That's from another thread, John."

So I'm not reading in two threads? I can barely fathom it. I thought I'd covered it, but it seems to be ubiquehensive.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 07:26 PM

Hi, Bob. The back and forth cycle of breathing that occurs through the nostrils (cyling from one side to the other every couple of hours) is interesting. I've been told that when the left side is clear one is in the "Yin" (or cooling) cycle...when the right side is clear one is in the "Yang" (or warming) cycle. Is that the way you would describe it?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 08:40 PM

Little Hawk: I hadn't heard of that particular reference, although it seems to be in line with Chinese thought on body mechanics. My old friend, Master Lee Shiu Pak(Yang Style Tai Chi) used to tell me he knew when a horse was going to win a race, he would go down to where they walked the horses before the race, to observe their Chi/breath. He then told me of his concern not to "take too much". Just enough to live, pay the rent, etc. He did pay for supper more than once. I miss him greatly.
But when you open yourself up to things like this, in a public forum, you run the risk of ridicule. The power of the subconscious mind has been well documented by a number of writers. Each of us has actually used it, although some may not be willing to further explore it's true power. They will dismiss it as a "lucky guess," the phone call you were expecting, the "coincidence" of meeting someone at an obscure location, finding the keys you lost, etc.
It and your superconscious are your "Guardian Angels," ready to protect you in emergencies. Your only requirement is to provide the faith/belief.
It is not my place to "convince" anybody of anything, nor is it to "win an argument."
But I do know that each of you reading this will experience a situation where the intervention of something beyond mere human existence will come into play.
Life is a school. We are students...
bob

Little Hawk: The time when the breath from both nostrils is equal is a time of power. Use it wisely...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 08:47 PM

seems to me I've been thru this "you've got to believe in order to believe" thing before....

Once you really, really accept an idea, you subjectively see almost anything.

That's not what *I* want to do. I want to see everything I can about what is objectively true.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 08:58 PM

"when you open yourself up to things like this, in a public forum, you run the risk of ridicule"

Don't I know it.

Bob, interestingly enough, the breath in my 2 nostrils is at that evening-out or balancing point right now...as close as I can tell. Usually it's strongly to one side or the other, but it seems about even right now.

Most of what you talk about is familiar to me. How would you suggest using that time of even breath?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 09:01 PM

Bill: This world is a delusion. Only you can create what is "objectively true." But you must understand that that particular objectivity is for you alone..."Reality" exists on a multiplicity of levels, at the same time...Once mind enters into the equation, all "objectivity" becomes subjective...bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 09:04 PM

Little Hawk: Pray for Peace...Give Thanks for the Blessings that have been given to you...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 09:08 PM

Okay.

I wouldn't recommend you spend a lot of time trying to convince Bill of anything, but it's your lookout.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 09:55 PM

Mindshock...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdOF9_akTNc

"May The Sacred Heart of Jesus Be Loved, Honored, Adored, and Glorified, Forever and Ever..." Amen...

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: KT
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 10:02 PM

Bob, I like what you have to say.

Why not join and become a regular instead of a guest?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 10:46 PM

KT: "I would never be a member of a group that would have me as a member..." - "borrowed" from Groucho Marx...
Thanks for the sentiments...I would prefer to keep things as they are for now...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 02:02 AM

Apaloosa Lady---long winded, but dead right. God is Love, pure and simple.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 06:27 PM

"I wouldn't recommend you spend a lot of time trying to convince Bill of anything, but it's your lookout."

Little Hawk knoweth whereof he speaketh.

"Bill: This world is a delusion. Only you can create what is "objectively true." But you must understand that that particular objectivity is for you alone..."

Oh, mercy..I went thru that in college Philosophy classes for years! You are basically putting a semi-mystical spin on the philosophy of David Hume. You can, as Hume did, argue that viewpoint, but in daily life, your very well-being depends on pragmatically acting otherwise.

As Little Hawk can vouch for, I have some pretty pointed ideas on what can and cannot be 'subjectively' true.

I am sorta curious about how you came to this "world as delusion" stance, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 06:29 PM

And where your AUthority to Instruct Anyone about Everything was signed...not that I should talk... :)



A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 06:53 PM

"RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God"

I'd like to believe that there is a Guest,Ed who's gonna come back to this thread. These threads started by guests who post once or twice then disappear gimme a pain in the










                                              and that's all for now.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: TheSnail
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 07:16 PM

Could the GUEST.Ed who started this thread be in any way related to the GUEST.Ed who started this thread I wonder?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 07:59 PM

The idea of the world as a delusion, experienced through the sensory perceptions of the human body/mind/ego (itself also an illusion) is one that is common to almost all the esoteric religions of the East, Bill. As such, it is a concept that tremendously predates Hume's opinions on the matter. It goes back thousands of years, perhaps tens of thousands of years, perhaps even longer than that. It has little to do with the western religions like Christianity or the Muslim or Jewish faiths. They are monotheistic. The Eastern religions are not.

It's a concept familiar to anyone who has studied either Vedanta (the ancient disciplines and philosophies connected with the Hindus) or Buddhism or a variety of other Eastern philosophies. The essential philosophies of the East have almost all held that the physical world(s) are experienced as a form of illusion (or delusion). A dream, if you will.   

As in a dream, it all seems very real to the dreamer while it's happening.

I'm not trying to argue about it with you, and I don't mind if you don't believe any of it, I'm just telling you about it, that's all.

Hume may have gotten some of his ideas from the East, I don't know, but he certainly did not originate the idea of the world as an illusion.

Arguing about this kind of stuff simply doesn't matter. It cannot be proven or unproven (except perhaps by one's own direct experience...and then only to the experiencer), but simply giving it consideration can be very interesting. It can open one to many possibilities. It does not necessarily interfere in any way with being practical and effective here and now.

After all, there are many ways of having a dream, right? Many ways of acting within the dream. Might as well pick the way that suits you best.

You and I have both done that, and we picked different ways. This is okay. ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:04 PM

I don't agree that Christianity (Christian faiths) are monotheistic. This trinity thing seems a bit non-monotheistic. And the Muslim elevation of Mohammed to 'godhood' puts the brakes on it for them, too. Don't leave many monotheistic religions, 'cept maybe Judaism.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:31 PM

An alternative. For the patient.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:44 PM

Well, Peace, certain Christian sects are both monotheistic AND believe in the Trinity. That is, they have decided to take the One God and divide Him into 3 aspects.

Fine. Why not? I could divide a man into 3 aspects too, if I wanted to: Father, husband, and son. He would still be one man.

The Hindus take the One Transcendent (which is immeasurable and indescribable) and they then divide it into literally thousands of symbolic gods, goddesses, and attributes...mainly so that simple people have some visual symbols they can pray to, focuson, and relate to.

The thing that makes the Judeo-Christian-Muslim triumvirate essentially monotheistic is Jehovah/Allah, the Father God. The fact that certain Christians have chosen to complicate the matter further with the Trinity concept has not in any way displaced the Father God as the one reigning supreme (conceptually), and he's a very anthropomorphic God. He seems very human.

The Eastern approach is different. As one approaches the One in the East, one does not ultimately find a human-like Father-God, one finds an indescribable and immeasurable and timeless infinite that encompasses all symbols...a principle of eternal being...something that cannot even be expressed in human language or grasped by human thought, but only approached through symbol and metaphor, and only experienced through surrender and "silence" (silence of the ever-chattering mind).

Who can silence the monkey mind? Can you? I have the greatest difficulty in doing so, I must say.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:55 PM

Make me one with everything? Hotdogs?

Well then, let's all be one and then it will save on the elections, the Earth and solve the housing crisis. Splitting gods/God is another form of equivocation. There is or there isn't. What's with all the in between?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:56 PM

Which isn't to say you are right--or wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 08:57 PM

You've got to ac-centuate the positive
E-liminate the negative
DON'T MESS WITH MR. IN BETWEEN


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 09:01 PM

Bill D: I don't really have a "stance". I recognize and honor your opinions. I have been thinking about the meaning of this existence for many years. I'd wondered that there must be more to it than just be born, educate yourself, get the job, family, build whatever, get old, die. What would be the point of all that? Surely that power that created us must have more prepared for us other than watch billions of souls go through eons of time, with similar processes.
And I too have contemplated the theory that we are mere creatures, not unlike sophisticated amoebas with a conscience, with apes as ancestors. But the question that remains is: What is the point of it all?
Considering the vast array of Religions, atheists, "viewpoints", and such...
This all began with a lifelong study of the power of the mind and what it can accomplish. The Martial Arts. Boatloads of Philosophers, Gurus, Masters, Mystics, Wiccans & Professors...
All I can tell you is from my personal experience, that there is a force that watches over us. We have the will and the power of choice and decision, but I had believed that we were being propelled through this existence for a higher purpose.
There have been countless times where I thought I was "finished". And I can tell you this truth: When the Bible tells you "Trust in the Lord and he will send His Mighty Angels to watch over you," that it's not just a bunch of words in a book. But fact.
My life has been a series of miracles. For which I give Thanks.
Now as far as the "world of delusion" part goes, it has only been in the last few years that I've come to the conclusion that it is ourselves that create our individual realities. Prior to that I'd felt as if I was being dragged or propelled through certain experiences and wondered, why is this stuff happening to me?
This is why I've come to the personal realization that the Thoughts WE CHOOSE to hold in consciousness create our reality. It goes WAAAY beyond "positive thinking"...Thoughts become THINGS...
You will have that "bad day." Someone you love will die...But you still have the power to bounce back, determination, fortitude, will.
While"God" for some might be "The Universal Subsconcious Mind", there is something MORE. Now THAT which created the planets and all existence may or may not have a physical embodiment, that perhaps mankind will never know...But we are all part of ONE power, ONE force. And FOR ME, the operative viewpoint is: "How May I Serve". What can I do to make it better? The answer: GO TOWARD LOVE/GOD.
Do that which you love and the obstacles fall as you place yourself in ALIGNMENT with the FORCE that created all of this, me, you, everything. That is MY reality.

For Y.O.U. it might be MY JOB, the wife & kids, whatever. This is why you might look at all the posts I've done and say to yourself, "AW that's not true." And in your reality, It's not true. This is because each of us lives in the reality that we have created. And the fun part is, both can exist at the same time. Witness Quantum Physics. Dylan's "Your right from your side, and I'm right from mine," goes far deeper than just two people talking to each other...

We are all extensions of THE ONE, at different levels in the process of growth. The spirit does not die. Those that have passed walk with us in another dimension/level, at the same time...I can only put these thoughts before you, there is no point in trying to convince you of anything. That which created you has all of that taken care of...

Peace & Blessings...

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bert
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 09:30 PM

...You will have that "bad day." Someone you love will die...

So, where was god then?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 09:44 PM

Bert: All around you... This is the cycle of life, from which no living creature or thing is exempt. You might consider to remember all the good things, although difficult in times of personal tragedy, and go on from there...Bless...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bert
Date: 07 Mar 08 - 11:21 PM

Mmmm. Trouble is I don't remember too many good things when my Mum died when I was seven years old.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 12:26 AM

There will always be things that appear "bad" from anyone's particular point of view, Bert.

What if you've already lived 5,000 lives and seen about 4,752 of your mothers in those lives die? (in some of them you died first)

Then what?

What kind of overview would it be in the light of all that?

Just a possibility to consider.

Whatever seems "bad" in this life...and there will always be things that seem that way...there's also "good" in this life. Without both of them being here, you couldn't know the difference...like day and night.

So the question is, what do we focus on? The bad things or the good things? Or both? Well, and to what extent then?

I've noticed that some people focus mainly on the "bad" things...and I've been in that state of mind a lot myself. It makes for a rough journey. I've noticed that the ones who focus mainly on the "good" things have a smoother and more joyous journey and they bounce back quicker when things don't "work out".

Still, you can't take someone else's decision to focus on something away. If he wants to believe he's living in misery, he will, regardless of how someone else might see it. That's up to him, right?

So we all get the life that we believe we're getting...as it unfolds and we observe it through the frame we have decided to put around it.

"It's a tragedy." "It's an adventure." "It's a misery." "It's a challenge." "It's a joke." "It's boring." "It's tedious." "It's great!" "It's a living hell!"

All of those things could be said by one person about one life, depending how he chose to look at it at any given time.

To ask "where was God?" when a tragedy occured misses the point. God didn't go away, because what is omnipresent CAN'T go away. God isn't there to hand out just the candies and treats and save you from your problems and pain, God is the entire field of being upon and in which the "good" and "bad" things all happen. It's like a fish asking "Where did the world go?" when he gets caught on a hook. The world didn't go anywhere. It's still there, and the fish is part of it.

But if you don't believe that, then you won't experience it, and that's okay. Everyone is free to experience exactly what they believe.

I've been complaining about various "bad" stuff that happened in my life since ever... ;-) I'm a bit immature in that respect. Yet the fact is, I've been pretty darned lucky compared to a lot of people in this world.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bert
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 12:47 AM

You don't experience what you believe. You experience what happens. What you believe is how you interpret what happens.

So YOU try telling a seven year old kid, whose Mum has just died, that God did it. The poor brat probably won't feel "pretty darned lucky".


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 10:07 AM

Well, you know...Bob might just have something there about subjective reality. I was just reading this article by a professor of Physics, who seems to put it in context. Kinda technical, but it has a lot of research and detail.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 10:47 AM

Some sort of belief construct has to be in place for experience to occur at all.

It is of interest to ask what the impact of such a construct is, and how, and to what degree, it monitors or filters the quality of realized experience (as a subset of all possible experience in a given moment).


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 01:01 PM

Bill D: Yes, it was an interesting article. Especially: "3 It has thus become increasingly apparent that physical ``reality'', no less than social ``reality'', is at bottom a social and linguistic construct; that scientific ``knowledge", far from being objective, reflects and encodes the dominant ideologies and power relations of the culture that produced it; that the truth claims of science are inherently theory-laden and self-referential; and consequently, that the discourse of the scientific community, for all its undeniable value, cannot assert a privileged epistemological status with respect to counter-hegemonic narratives emanating from dissident or marginalized communities." Thanks...

Bert: There was a great guitarist here in Montreal by the name of Peter Chalmers, whose funeral I attended. There, I met a young boy of 8. Both his parents had died and everybody was wondering, "what do we DO with him?" Relatives did come forth upon hearing the news, but I remember walking up the street with him wondering what to say. I remember we got some ice cream or something and talked about "stuff", but "God" having done it, to my memory, never came up. The little guy was definitely in a cloud that day. I'm sure your Mom smiles down upon you...And, all in all, you did make it through...Time to transcend?
Maybe do something noble, in her memory...

Little Hawk: Guard your thoughts. Letting your mind run free, thinking about "bad stuff", only brings more, "bad stuff." Positive affirmations can turn the tide, even in the face of apparent "impossibility." Your meditations can begin by a simple observation of the breath leaving your nostrils. Thoughts will come in to disturb the tranquility. When they do, talk to them as "entities". eg. That is to say, "I better fix my car..." Tell that thought, "I recognize you, and I will attend to that, but right now, in this moment, I (The BIG I) am in control of this meditation..."
Caruso was said to have been observed talking to himself before a concert, gripped with fear at the thought of having to go before a large audience. He was supposed to have said(to the fears/negative thoughts), "Get out, Get out...The BIG ME wants to sing..." If your mind is a "drunken monkey", attempt a clear 10 second interval, where YOU take control, and build from there. You may experience an event where the "demons" of the subconscious appear to you. These are merely your fears, TO BE PUT OUT. A tremendous power lies within, recognize it. And liberate your true self...

Blessings to All...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 02:31 PM

Bert, I don't follow you. What on earth would make you think I would tell a 7 year old kid whose mother had died that "God did it"?

I don't think of God as doing things to people. I don't think of God as an exterior agent, you see. I think of people as being in charge of their own destiny, within the limitations of their own awareness and their innate abilities....and, of course, they are often affected by other people too, and by situations around them.

We cannot guarantee that "bad" things won't happen to us or to someone else, but if they do it isn't because "God did it". Not in my opinion, anyway. There are many things that happen where it is impossible or downright irrational to assign blame to anyone...specially to God, of all things!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:18 PM

follow up article to the one I posted about reality

one more






I suppose I ought to feel guilty, but somehow I don't. A search on the article title will reveal many more comments on it and its aftermath.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:19 PM

REALITY?

Why?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:23 PM

I opened your first link, Bill. A "Vote for Hillary" ad came up. Vas gibst?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:28 PM

1st link?? the original? Or at 4:18PM? I get a Wash Post blog article at the 4:18 link


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:33 PM

Must have been a passing popup.

Loved the second article.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 04:34 PM

It was an eye-opener...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: bobad
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 05:00 PM

I'm glad to hear that Bill. I started to read the first article and thought - WTF, I either have a pea-sized brain or this is total BS.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 05:51 PM

"...a pea-sized brain or this is total BS."

There's plenty of both to go around.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: autolycus
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 06:21 PM

aamoi,Bill, how did you find the second, debunking article?

Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 06:59 PM

Bob R., of course human thought can change the molecular structure within metal. That is what an electroencephalogram is/does: thought waves, brainwaves ( electromagnetic phenomena ) is recorded on metalized tape. It could also be recorded on a wire recorder. Because human thought activity IS electromagnetic it creates a small localized field. More could be said but that is big-time thread drift. Let me just say, I agree.

Back to the original post, Guest Ed is looking for an easier life from God. He doesn't really identify God but he does use the conventional Capital "G" which in occidental tradition usually identifies the one God as presented in the Bible. But about this I cannot be sure. One of the posters above equated the biblical God with Allah. This is not accurate by any stretch as Allah was a tribal god among many before the time of Mohammad. It was Mohammad's genius which consolidated the Arabian tribes under Allah. The partial recognition of Jewish scriptures by the Muslims muddies the picture somewhat but what I have stated is historically accurate.

As I posted earlier, it all depends upon how you define God. I don't believe Guest Ed was really considering the Christian God as the object of his desires. Christianity can be seen as a sect of Judaism which has been unequivocally denied by Judaism. Christians recognize Jesus of Nazareth as the Christ, the Messiah, the Promised One of the Old Testament. We believe Jesus is God incarnate: God taking on the fleshly FORM of Mankind in order to ultimately communicate with His creation who severed the former communication connection by disobeying God's sole commandment to them, to not eat of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil.

At any rate Jesus the Christ whom we recognize AS God had much to say about the conditions of Man's existence and in particular of His believers' existence in this world. The hardships and the ultimate demise of each person is the result of Man's original (first) sin. God told Man that in the day that he ate of fruit (actually "touched" the fruit) he would certainly die. That he didn't die right away allowed him to propagate and so pass the contagion on to his offspring. Jesus told His followers that IN the world they would have many trials. He told them that the rain will fall on the just and the unjust. That is to say that no one escapes the problems of the human condition. No free pass. As for His believers, he told them that He did not come to bring peace but a sword. That He would be a divider of men, brother against brother, son against the father , etc. and that anyone who was not willing to forsake hearth and home had no part in Him. He promised that if the world hated Him it would hate them also, that they would be persecuted and hounded and put to death for their belief. They would be reviled and mocked to scorn. They would be put out of the synagogues and churches and that those who killed them would believe that they were doing God a favor. If you want I can give you scripture and verse but most of you who know me know that I write from accurate Biblical knowledge. Nonetheless, let me now and I will post the same.

No Ed, if you are looking for an easier life, choose some other god or do like so many others have done, make your own or just skip it altogether. The cross of Christ is a heavy thing to bear if you are not willing to be a partaker of His death.

Oh, sorry! I left out the good part. If you really do believe in Him and accept your inevitable death and so "die" to this world and what IT affords you will also share in His resurrection and triumph over death, Hell and the grave. He promises you eternal Life with him and in Him and it begins the moment you believe and can never be taken from you. You have His Word on it.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 07:05 PM

Just got back from my monthly jam in Goshen. Passed a Mennonite church with the one-huge-letter-per-window message:

"GOO IS LOVE"

I'm guessing that it probably said "GOD IS LOVE" but the kids weren't very careful about leaving the corners in the giant "D".

"GOO IS LOVE" would be a great name for a caramel store, though. Of course, I can't really imagine a whole store devoted to caramel. Both California and Indiana devoted whole cities to Carmel. That's different though.

If Luke Skywalker had been Mennonite, you know what they'd have called his diminutive mentor?


Yoder.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 07:38 PM

Hi Kids: Yes, Professor Sokol's hoax has been around for a long time. What made it interesting, besides his "creative wordplay," & BS is that he stumbles upon aspects of truth, unbeknown to him. There does NOT have to be a logical progression of anything...Just ask your Ex-wife...Or her lawyers, Lipshitz & Dipshitz...Now Lipshitz you can talk to, he's reasonable, But Dipshitz, Whoah!

This brought me back to High School where I was being questioned on an assignment. And the subject came up of , "do you like to read?" My answer, NO. (At that moment, I wanted to play basketball)Then I was asked by the same teacher, Well, "What do you want to do for a career?" I tell him, "I'm going to be an English Teacher." Well, the whole room breaks out laughing. So he says, "Well why do you want to be an English Teacher if you don't like to read? I reply, because I want to be an English Teacher." (The Groucho Marx in me appears...)

So as I began to go to College to be an English Teacher, I met a female Professor who went on about "the medium is the message." Pronouncing it like "massage." And citing people like Marshall McLuhan, etc. Then she tells me the texts we are working with are at such a "high level" that we (the class) would not be able to comprehend them. So she had to "adjust them a bit" so that we could understand. Again I get asked my opinion, (which if you haven't figured it out yet, is a "risky" thing to do. Did anybody get that? Ryszkiewicz-risky, aw ferget it)
So she asks me what I think of a particular passage and I tell her it's bullsh&t. She tells me, "You can't say that! I tell her, "sure I can, I just did." "Well, you have to substantiate that." I say, "No I don't." HOW CAN YOU SAY THAT? I tell her, "because it just IS." Shades of "you don't need a weather vane to tell which way the wind blows..."

Anyway, I graduated; given my Diploma at commencement by the same Dean who told me "I don't stand a chance." Moved the tassel on the mortarboard, shook his hand, and went off to be a teacher...

That all happened after I found God in a railroad car, while loading, I think it was 5000 cases of Jifoam oven cleaner in minus 5 degree F. weather, HE helped me graduate - really...


bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 07:45 PM

Slag: Thanks. I just finished my latest opus,(hippopotamus?) Then I saw your post. That durn article by the Japanese is out there in print, I wish I could find it...bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 08:08 PM

Ha! I love your story about your educational history, Bob! ;-)

"the man standing next to me, his head was exploding.
I was praying that the pieces wouldn't fall on me..."


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Chicken Charlie
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 08:18 PM

Believing in God is one thing; having God make things easier is another. Somewhere in Buddhism there's a conversation that goes something like this:

Seeker: What did you do before you were enlightened?
Master: I cut wood and carried water.
Seeker: What did you do after your were englightened?
Master: I cut wood and carried water.



Peace: Converse is a tennie, you dolt, and that's for being so rude with me on my inward-or-outward thread. Everybody else: This is a private joke; don't get on my case for saying "dolt." :)

CC


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 08:22 PM

"Peace: Converse is a tennie, you dolt, and that's for being so rude with me on my inward-or-outward thread."

What's a tennie? (I know what a dolt is.)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 08:23 PM

And YOU, assuming the identity of Charlie Chicken when we KNOW that CC changed his name to G#G#. For shame!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 08:24 PM

Whoops! Meant to say Chicken Charlie.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 09:13 PM

LH, Thank goodness you didn't say "jackass" or "ignoramus" or "nincompoop" or something insulting. The powers that be would then have no choice but to append this thread to the INSULT thread and that would be that. Fortunately you were quite accurate, as per usual. Uhh...Sorry Peace but you gotta call 'em as you see 'um! :)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 09:16 PM

"What made it interesting, besides his "creative wordplay," & BS is that he stumbles upon aspects of truth, unbeknown to him. "

I rather thought that this would be the type of response I'd get. Even when the point of the whole 'hoax' is that people hear what they want to hear, and refuse to 'see' the internal flaws and messy logic, no one ever says, "Gee..I sure was careless there.."

reminds me of my favorite Peanuts cartoon:

Charlie Brown is walking along when he comes to Lucy, kneeling and looking at something on the sidewalk..."What are you doing , Lucy?"

"Charlie Brown--see this big black bug? Do you know why it's so much bigger than the others? Because it's the QUEEN!"..........so Charlie gets down and peers closely...

"Lucy, that's not a bug...that's a black jelly bean!"

Lucy gives him this LOOK and bends to scrutinize the bug again..."Why, so it is!...I wonder how a Jelly bean ever got to be queen!"

There's no way to make the point when your 'victim' just redefines the rules and explains that anything you say just proves his point.


Ces't la vie


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Jeri
Date: 08 Mar 08 - 09:32 PM

Tennie = tennis shoe.

I don't know why I'm back in this thread. I discovered tonight that 'they' must've put in a new tower and my wireless went broadband. Been YouTubing my brains out. Don't know about God, but in Dinkybutt NH, tonight there is broadband.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 02:15 PM

I guess that's the problem. Convincing a rationalist to have faith is kind of like convincing a fish to breathe air.

Aren't sneakers called Trainers in English English?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 03:17 PM

Rationalists do have faith. Everyone has faith in whatever and whomever they normally rely upon as being worthy of their trust.

Faith is not just "belief in things there are no evidence for", it is also trust in someone or something without reservation, and that trust can be based ON evidence and observation and experience...or it can just be a blank assumption. When I was a kid I trusted the conventional views of science without reservation. That was a blank assumption on my part at the time, later backed up to some extent by observation. I had 100% faith from the start in conventional science...long BEFORE I had any direct proof of it. I also trusted my parents without reservation. And the government too. I soon discovered that my parents were fallible, and that the government lies now and then. ;-) I later discovered that any specific century's or even decade's scientific conventionality is also fallible...very much so. A great deal of it turns out to be wrong or inadequate in the centuries that follow.

I no longer have 100% faith in either my parents or the science community...nor, needless to say, in any church or religion. My faith is partial now.

Faith can be partial. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. I have partial faith in many things, like the science community, for example. There is almost nothing left anymore that I have full faith in except my own powers of direct observation and experience...oh, and some simple stuff that we all know about like that two plus two makes four, for instance, and that things fall down, not up, and that water flows to the lowest point and will evaporate at boiling point. Yeah, those things I have faith in. ;-)

Now, please resist the temptation to concoct something "clever" that appears superficially to contradict those last few examples of mine just to indulge in the pleasures of playing argumentative games and playing devil's advocate. Okay?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 04:57 PM

"...resist the temptation..." Okay, they say 'resistance is futile', anyway.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Peace
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 05:02 PM

Ah, yes. Temptations.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Emma B
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 05:35 PM

more temptation maybe proof of the existance of a divine being? :)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 05:58 PM

Faith...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XesXjkDLImg
It's Sunday, so I'm resisting the "temptation" to cast another pearl before Bill...

<:0) bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 06:13 PM

It's ok, I don't 'oink' on Sundays....(and if I'd remember Proverbs 13:3, I'd say a LOT less)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 06:15 PM

Emma:

If I were not a hard-bitten materialist (which I am not) I would say those artifacts definitely bear the earmarks of Intelligent Design!! There's no way they could have evolved without intelligent intentionality guiding their fate!


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Sorcha
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 06:19 PM

Skating on thin ice, there Amos buddy.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: TheSnail
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 06:37 PM

Little Hawk

When I was a kid I trusted the conventional views of science without reservation.

You were mistaken or, more likely, badly taught. The fundamental undelying principle of science is to question everything especially conventional views.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Emma B
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 06:51 PM

sorry Amos - if there really was Intelligent Design it wouldn't be fattening :)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 07:05 PM

Bill: Peace & Blessings...May the Lord be with you in your time of need...
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 07:40 PM

Snail - "You were mistaken or, more likely, badly taught. The fundamental undelying principle of science is to question everything especially conventional views."

That's true. But it's not as you think. I was aware that science questions everything...I simply was not quite careful enough as to how I worded my original statements in the previous post that you are alluding to.

What I meant was this: as a child I learned to approach the world strictly through the scientific viewpoint...as opposed to approaching it through the mystical viewpoint, some religious viewpoints, or the viewpoints of superstition or folk legends or beliefs about good and bad "luck". Did I leave anything out? ;-)

Am I clear now? I WAS aware that science questions and re-examines conventional views, and I was inclined to do that...but only THROUGH the approach of science, logic, observation, and rationality. ("science" meaning, the scientific methods...observation, experimentation, measurement, etc)

It was not surprising that I would have had that viewpoint. My father was an engineer and neither of my parents had any religious beliefs, in fact, they rather looked down on organized religion. ("mumbo jumbo", my Dad called it)

Like any child at a young age, I tended to believe whatever my parents believed. Later on, of course, I tended to question what they believed quite stringently.

I later moved into all kinds of other interests beyond my parents' viewpoints, including spirituality, but I don't belong to any religion. I'm interested in all of them (the religions), and I am still interested in science too, naturally. I mean, who wouldn't be, if they knew anything about it? ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 10:44 PM

Fred Allen Wolf, Ph.D "Poppin the Quiff"...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5mPWmGhfJQ&feature=related
I reached a state of mind one time where I observed a horse's head that looked similar to what you would find in a chess set. The difference was it was constructed with only lines of white light determining it's features. What set it apart was that I was able to observe it from every direction AT THE SAME TIME. Something that lasted for perhaps a second, something I won't forget...A glimpse into the Quantum Field, or the mind entertaining me, who can say?
bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 09 Mar 08 - 10:58 PM

Alan Sokal's name has become a verb - a high internetz honour.

Just read the last page and a half of this thread. Think I'll go on over and see if there are any more birthday LolPZs linked at Pharyngula.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 02:24 AM

Cynicism is easy. Criticism is easy. Sitting back and taking potshots is easy. Disbelief is also easy. In a world of distrust, cynicism and general negativity, God help the soul who ventures a theory or an original idea or a belief. That's fresh meat before the lions. An honest critique seeks to understand what is being proffered and then analyzes the same in light of reason or theology or form and substance or history and so forth. Cheap shots come from a attitude of general disbelief or suspicion or a smug attitude of superiority and certainly not from a heart of love and understanding.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 09:00 AM

Faith, then, is hard?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 09:25 AM

Is faith hard, Mrzzy? Not necessarily. It depends on the condition of the heart. I had no trouble having total faith in my parents, my country, and the authoritative power of the world of science when I was 7 years old. Faith comes very easily to a heart that is open.

Faith is very hard for a heart that has grown cynical, fearful, reactive, defensive, and suspicious, as Slag suggested.

Most of us do become quite cynical and suspicious as time goes by...due to a series of shocks and disappointments we have suffered in life. We start expecting the worst. We develop many chips on our shoulders, and we being reacting to things around us in a hostile manner before any offence has even been given...as I see all the time on this forum.

I remember that when I first went off to school I thought that everyone in the world would always be kind and truthful. I thought that all people were good to one another. I thought that everyone had high ideals and noble virtues. Well, I was in for a surprise.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 10:57 AM

"Faith is very hard for a heart that has grown cynical, fearful, reactive, defensive, and suspicious, as Slag suggested." Little Hawk

I see this opinion, or something like it, often, coming from people who are believers. In most cases, they don't seem to even understand that they are broadbrushing and insulting. It is as insulting to say I am cynical, reactive, defensive and suspicious as it would be for me to say you are gullible, naive, and unintelligent. I'm perfectly comfortable with saying I think someone's belief is hogwash or full of nonsense. I'm not prepared to say people (particularly people I like) are all those negative things - unless, of course, they are.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: TheSnail
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 11:08 AM

"Faith is very hard for a heart that has grown cynical, fearful, reactive, defensive, and suspicious, as Slag suggested." Little Hawk

How about curious, bold, inquiring, challenging?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 11:36 AM

Anything you have faith in (God, the government, your parents, your partner, your children, the scientific community, your doctor, your lawyer, and yourself) can be damaged when a person becomes fearful, defensive, and reactive. That damage is the problem I was referring to. Faith does not only apply to religious beliefs, but to all forms of belief and trust in anyone or anything. The fact that some of you are taking what I said as a personal attack on you is the perfect demonstration of what I am talking about when I say that offence is often taken before it was ever intended.

I never met anyone yet without some chip on his shoulder. The chip on his shoulder was not put there by me, and I do not take responsibility for it, nor carry guilt for it, nor can I remove it. Only the one with the chip on his shoulder can remove it.

If he's willing to. If not, he goes on carrying it.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 11:41 AM

200!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Riginslinger
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 12:05 PM

"I'd like to believe that there is a God..."


                      I'd like to believe I had fifty-million dollars in the bank too, but...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 12:10 PM

Perhaps, then, people (self included) should be more careful about speaking universally rather than specifically. And let the chips fall where they may.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 12:12 PM

Thoughts on a Monday morning, after a snowstorm...

You might go through life thinking, well hey, it was ME who got the job, and I worked hard, and when all that bad stuff happened , I was tough, got up, dusted myself off and kept going...And all of that is true. And you might look at the people in this world that you would call "lucky," "privileged", "in the right place at the right time," etc. Why is that?

Those people have gone through bad times, maybe more so than you. But they were not self defeating, their focus was on a world of possibilities, even in the face of troubled times; they had the experiences, but did not DWELL on them. They CHOSE to have a different mind set. It is why we refer to them as winners, the bold, geniuses...
You too, have access to that same force, you need only focus your thoughts. Some would call this Faith, and label it under the guise of Religion. Others might call it self-reliance, and choose not to acknowledge any form of "higher power."

You might choose to experiment with the concept of "review of the day." That is to say, before you retire, observe your thinking patterns for that day. Did you struggle that day? Or, was it one of those "magical" days, where everything went your way? A blend of both? What was the dominant thought? Woe is me? Or, wow, what a great day!
Examine a number of days, what was your attitude, "I can DO this," or, "I'd like to do this, but I don't have..." Or, "I don't stand a chance?"

The answer is there. Why your life is the way it is. It's the focus you entertain, your "Faith."
That which got you through this life so far, If you believe "life is hard," quite simply, and with no big surprise, life is hard for you.

But if you boldly develop the "yes, a few things got in the way, but I'm going to do it anyway" mind set. You attach yourself to a great power, some people choose to call this "God"...

This is why you've been given the message, "According to your Faith, so be it unto you..."

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 12:31 PM

And let the chips fall where they may.

Would that be Cod and chips?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 12:46 PM

I prefers haddocks and handcuts.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 09:45 PM

I was just countering the post above mine, not saying that is what I thought. The prior poster had been saying Cynicism is easy. Criticism is easy. Sitting back and taking potshots is easy. Disbelief is also easy. Thus, my question.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Mar 08 - 10:28 PM

Your question was "is faith hard?". Well....(shrug)...obviously faith (in anything) is harder for some and easier for others. I don't think your question really has a definitive answer.

Faith (in anything) comes naturally when there is great love. I'm speaking of faith in general terms when I say that, not specifically of religious faith alone...but in either case, the same can apply. Lack of faith comes naturally when there is hostility, suspicion, disappointment, a sense of betrayal or any other bad feeling like that.

Have you ever noticed how great it feels when people have faith in you? And how lousy it feels when they don't?

When one is deeply and happily in love...one has tremendous faith in the object of one's love. These are the experiences we all secretly or openly long for in life and we search for them, each in his or her own way. Most people search for it through individual relationships, most often of the romantic type. Some people search for it through greater service...in various ways...to their family, to their community, to their nation, even to the whole world. Some people search for it through various forms of religious devotion.

I cannot fault anyone for engaging in that search, because in so doing they are rendering service unto the highest ideal they know how to reach for.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 01:31 AM

LH, et al, There is innocence and then there is higher innocence. The first we are born with. Yes, it gets worn down, abused and betrayed. The "Disney" gets rubbed off by the world. We stop believing in fairy tales, we stop trusting, our hides grow thicker and we learn what the real world is really like and we, above most things, protect ourselves and our own.

A higher innocence comes when we recognize that because we may have failed and lost our virginity, our innocence or perhaps had it stripped away from us, we can still hold to the ideals and concepts that are righteous. We can believe in the same and promote the same and encourage others to do the same. To surrender to cynicism and sneer at those who don't does not make for a better world. Jesus said to be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves. Good words.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 12:54 PM

Exactly my thoughts, Slag.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 01:57 PM

Oops - italics should have ended sooner.

But I can't make myself believe something I don't believe, so I guess it IS hard (for some)...


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 02:10 PM

No one can make themselves believe something they don't believe. And why should they be expected to?

But it's not just a question of to believe...or not believe. It's a question of:

1. Do I believe this?
2. Do I not believe it?
3. Do I simply not know for sure?

If it's # 3, which is most often the case, then it isn't a question of believing or not believing, it's a question of:

1. Does this seem likely to me?
2. Does it seem unlikely?
3. Does it seem moderately likely or unlikely?
4. Is it possible that I need a lot more information about this before I can even have any justification for having any strong opinion about it?
5. Is it possible that I don't know much about this yet?
6. Is it possible that somebody knows more about it than I do?
7. Is it possible that I don't yet have ALL the answers? ;-) !

And if so, what would I base my categorical statement of belief or my categorical statement of non-belief on? A house built on sand?

Why is it that people keep stating absolutes all the time, as in saying "I believe this" or "I don't believe that". How much have they really got to go on? Do they really know?

Not too much to go on in most cases, I'd say. They mostly go on assumptions, based on prior assumptions, based on somebody else's prior assumptions.

It is a bit foolish to always talk in absolutes when the fact is that one really doesn't know.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 02:47 PM

"It is a bit foolish to always talk in absolutes when the fact is that one really doesn't know."

" the fact is "

ummmmmmm........is that an absolute?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 03:46 PM

I think...

...that one of the reasons I am so opposed to the kind of reasoning about faith, positive thinking, etc. I'm seeing in the last fifty posts or so is that much of it is predicated on the experiences of people whose primary lifestyle is supported by living where we do, surrounded by affluence, not particularly in danger of starving or being murdered for what little we might have, or running from the paths of oncoming armies. Yes some of us, me included, have suffered from poverty Western style, where keeping a roof over our heads got a little tricky and it might have to be someone else's roof, and food got harder to come by, and compared to others around us, we were hurting bad.

Bob R. said: "The answer is there. Why your life is the way it is. It's the focus you entertain, your "Faith."
That which got you through this life so far, If you believe "life is hard," quite simply, and with no big surprise, life is hard for you.

But if you boldly develop the "yes, a few things got in the way, but I'm going to do it anyway" mind set. You attach yourself to a great power, some people choose to call this "God"...

This is why you've been given the message, "According to your Faith, so be it unto you..."


(I ain't pickin' on you Bob - you just articulated more of what I'm trying to talk about)

This just ignored, as do all statements about faith in some greater spirit/intelligence/globular mass of cosmic consciousness that imply at bottom you get something back for your faithfulness, a huge percentage of the people in the world who live in conditions we can barely imagine. Those are people who aren't funnin' when they look around and say "My life is hard". Those are women watching their babies die because they haven't any milk left in their own famine-dried breasts to feed them. Children forced to be atrocity committing soldiers in some mad warlord's army. Little girls forced into marriages with old men who make slaves of them. Families in one room shacks hoping nobody kills them tonight because they are members of the wrong tribe. Women told to close their businesses and stay home because God says that's your place.

Prosperity gospel, whether it comes from a braying preacher or in a flower-power haze of cosmic goodies, would be a joke to people like that, if they have anything left of the sense of humour they may have started out with.

I'm damn glad I'm fortunate enough to be far away from those kinds of human experiences. Fortunate! That's the word: luck.of.the.draw. Yes, I can improve my lot through energy and activity and smarts, I can feel good about myself if I can convince myself I'm specially protected by Goodnessknowswhat, I can ascribe my place in life to having propitiated enough or not enough whatever deity I care to subscribe to.

Innocence! There are a lot of people on the planet who never had much more than nine months of that.

Faith may work wonders for y'all. Goodonya. I have Knowledge in stead. I love my husband and family. I know them. It isn't necessary for me to have faith in them. Or in anything else.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 04:02 PM

We all work on knowledge. Partial knowledge. Our knowledge is necessarily quite limited. Our faith (in whatever it is we have faith in and I do NOT speak only of religion) is based first of all on our available knowledge (limited though it may be), and secondly on our imagination's reach beyond the boundaries of that knowledge.

Everyone to some extent depends upon faith-based assumptions that reach beyond the present boundaries of their knowledge, yet what knowledge they have also plays a very significant part in influencing those faith-based assumptions. One's knowledge is the bedrock OF one's faith. The more you know about anything, the more faith you are inclined to have about it, based on that knowledge...plus further imaginative stretch. This is why people who've thoroughly investigated the possibility of reincarnation, for example, are far more likely to have some faith in its likelihood than people who have never given it any real thought....and the same goes for any other theoretical matter.

As for people in poor countries, I've met a lot of those people, and what I noticed about them, simply on average you understand, is that they seem to have stronger faith in spiritual matters and family ties than the average person does in an affluent society.

I would ascribe that to the fact that they have not been so sedated and distracted by affluence itself, but that's only speculation on my part. There may be any number of other reasons for it.

Bee, because you love your husband and family, you DO have faith in them. That's how love works. You also have knowledge of them. The two work in tandem, not at odds with one another. Knowledge bolsters an abiding faith, and an abiding faith always encourages the pursuit of more knowledge.

That which I have no faith in, I do not pursue.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:11 PM

I understand what you're getting at, LH, but I don't agree that it is 'faith'. I could as easily call it 'expectation' or 'extrapolation'. They love me, therefore they are likely to treat me kindly. The sun is known to have circled the earth umptybillion times, therfore I expect it will do so again tomorrow.

As for people you've met from poor countries having more faith, maybe the ones you've met do. I wasn't particularly referring to 'poor' countries, but to truly awful countries. People I've met who've survived gruesome all-encompassing trauma (I've met a few: Halifax is a port, refugees end up there frequently) haven't struck me as particularly interested in religion unless in the tribal sense of 'others like me'. Some will take on the religious trappings of any religious group which participates in helping them; understandable, and kudos to religious groups who do help. There is also a human tendency to question one's own survival when many around you have died. Why me? can be answered: God's reasons, which I can't be expected to understand. Otherwise, it is very hard to accept.

I've recently spoken with a young and affluent teen who by pure luck survived a bombing incident. He saw other children dead, saw people's dismembered bodies. He turned to God, believing God saved him, because otherwise why is he still alive?

In an unreasoning universe, people try to create order, even if it's just pattern imposition.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:27 PM

Yes, people always try to create order. That's because order seems a lot safer and more predictable than chaos, right? One person's search for order may lead him to a religion or to faith in what he calls "God", another's may lead him to join a political party, another's may lead him to join the military, another's may lead him to join a street gang, another's may lead him to a career in science or the police force.

There are innumerable ways to seek order and thereby increase one's sense of security and control in a potentially chaotic world.

A confident expectation or extrapolation is exactly what I think faith is, religious faith included.

It is precisely the fact that religion does give some people great confidence that they are so drawn to it.

When you try to stand between someone and what gives them confident expectation, they get really angry! And that's quite understandable.

When you tell someone that that which they most believe in is "a crock"...whatever it may be...they likewise get really angry. This is as true if they believe in the Republican Party, or the Democratic Party, or their girlfriend, or their country, or their God, or their science, or their profession. It doesn't matter what it is. Everyone needs to believe in something, and it's best not to trash the beliefs of others to their faces if you can possibly avoid the temptation to do so. Yet I see people trashing the beliefs of others constantly on the Internet without a second thought, and I think it's rather disgraceful. They love dishing it out, but they do not enjoy receiving it back. No one enjoys being disrespected in that fashion.

There's no guarantee as to whose beliefs are "best" and there never will be.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 07:01 PM

Generally speaking, though, Little Hawk, those of us who don't believe in one of the standard set of deities are unlikely to tell those we disagree with that they will be hideously tortured for eternity, and that such a fate is well deserved. Believers do this all the time and are often surprised that we think it a deeply repugnant concept, and that it is even more repugnant to threaten anyone in such a manner, regardless of their being convinced of its factuality.

Now, I know not all believers are caught up in the Hell ideology, but most are, in some form or another.

Also, this question remains: why is it more insulting/agressive to tell a believer that you don't believe than for a believer to tell you that they do? Because that is certainly the impression I am getting, anywhere the subject comes up. I have been actively pressured not to discuss religion from the POV of an atheist on this very board. No one ever complains about any spiritual group conducting, essentially, prayer rituals, on this board and everywhere else, nor would I ever wish them to stop doing so, as I am aware many find it comforting. Are my thoughts about the universe of lesser value? Do I have less right to speak on the subject as I see it, or understand it, or speculate about it?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 07:36 PM

Nope, Bee, you have the same rights that way that anyone else does to speak on a subject, understand it, and speculate about it.

Like you, I find the concept that non-believers will be "hideously tortured for eternity, and that such a fate is well deserved" to be hideously repugnant. I have never subscribed to it. I don't subscribe to the idea of "Hell" or the idea of divine punishment or the idea of original sin. If such an insane deity as would do that (torture souls for all eternity) ran the Universe I guess I would find myself obliged to join whoever was willing to rise up and rebel against that monster.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 11:02 PM

One more thought on the subject. You said, "why is it more insulting/agressive to tell a believer that you don't believe than for a believer to tell you that they do?"

Okay. It is more aggressive to express disbelief in something someone else believes in than simply to express belief in something you believe in.

The first is a deliberate negation of the other person's values. That is likely to bother them. The second is merely a positive statement about some value you have, not a deliberate negation of anyone else.

(but there can be some beliefs that are in themselves negative...like the belief that "unbelievers will burn in hell"...so it's tricky...) Those are negative beliefs, not positive beliefs. Negative beliefs DO involve attack. Postive beliefs do not.

Here are some examples:

It's a negative thing to say to someone, "Your clothes are ugly. I don't like them." ;-) If you say it, the other person doesn't like it.

It's a positive thing to say, "I like the clothes I'm choosing to wear." or "I like your clothes."

It's a negative thing to say, "That's a lousy piece of art," to an artist who is showing his work at a show.

It's a positive thing to say to him, "That's a beautiful piece of art." (or if you don't think it is and you can't find anything good to say about it, then just don't say anything about it, and move on...)

Get the analogy?

Now if I was aware that someone had different values than me in regards to clothing, let's say, and I didn't like their style one bit, would I go up to them and say, "I hate your clothing. It sucks."?

No. I wouldn't. ;-) Why bother them about it? I would not broach the subject at all.

If, on the other hand, I liked their clothing, then I might tell them so if it crossed my mind to.

If someone proposes a prayer thread on Mudcat, they are not attacking people who don't believe in prayer, they're just doing something they like to do that makes sense to them. Period.

If someone, on the other hand, launches a thread saying that all prayer is "a crock" and that people who pray are fools, then they ARE deliberately attacking people who do engage in prayer and they're trying to get them to give it up. What they should do instead, I think, is launch a thread talking about how great science is or something else like that that they are for. Something they themselves believe in. Talk about THAT. That's not an attack on people.

I recommend focusing more on positives. Persuade by enthusiasm about what you are for and what you like, rather than by criticism of and attack upon what others are for. It shouldn't matter what others are for so much, because they are not living your life for you. What they are for is basically their own business, because that's their life, not yours.

What you are for is likewise your business, because it's your life, not theirs.

People cross the line when they try to badger everyone else into being the same as them and having the same values as them. Religious prosyletizers do that, and that's why most people don't like them. Those who constantly attack religion and badmouth it also do that. They are also prosyletizing, but with a different point of view in mind. Both are claiming some kind of superiority. Neither has the right to.

In either case, it's aggressive, invasive, and offensive to try to badger other people in that fashion.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bee
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 12:33 AM

Little Hawk, nope, I do not see it that way, because I am not talking about walking into a church and telling people their beliefs are nonsense. In fact I specifically said I would not want to disrupt or be negative about a prayer thread, and was aware that people find them comforting.

But if someone speaks to me about their beliefs, I do not see that my lack of belief should be considered the negative POV and theirs the positive. That is just the construct that is placed on religion, that it is seen to be positive by believers and has long been considered to be positive. I am quite able to see my secularism/naturalism as the positive starting point. In fact, once again, and likely quite unconsciously, you seem to have decided that my strongly held atheist stance has less value (and a negative one, at that) than that of any theist.

In fact, I see no reason why I should not be openly positive about my views, just as theists are about their views. They express disbelief about my understanding of the universe, therefore, they are negative towards my beliefs.

They are saying my clothes are ugly, in your analogy.

And I don't think your analogy works very well, anyway, since I'm not saying "You are all stupid deluded fools (your clothes are ugly)". If we were to stretch your clothing analogy, it might be more like discussing the utility of various kinds of clothing, and why I prefer not to wear their clothing style, and why they do prefer it. But that's really stretching it.

And this: "I recommend focusing more on positives. Persuade by enthusiasm about what you are for and what you like, rather than by criticism of and attack upon what others are for. It shouldn't matter what others are for so much, because they are not living your life for you. What they are for is basically their own business, because that's their life, not yours.

What you are for is likewise your business, because it's your life, not theirs."
= LH

Although you likely don't mean it to sound that way, is a suggestion that I shut up about my beliefs entirely, because the very mention of them is an 'attack' on believers. Theism infiltrates virtually every area of our lives, from Stevie Harper at the top saying God Bless Canada while allowing homophobic anti-science bigots to govern our country and influence our laws to the Jehovah's Witnesses at my door. Who I am always polite to, BTW, because they are my neighbours, not because they are theists. My point being: theists are in my business by default. At least they should be aware I exist, as a human being like them.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 01:29 AM

But I have just said, and said several times and in several ways that you should feel entirely free about speaking about any positive form of belief you have...and that religious people are trespassing on other people when they prosyletize and try to convert them.

I just don't get it. Do you only notice the things I say that you think are against you?

I just cannot comprehend your inability to see that I AM supporting your positive viewpoints and your right to express them.

It looks to me like you are so desirous of continuing to feel persecuted in some way that you're not willing to even acknowledge anything I say that supports you. Could this be the desire to sustain a previous argument when in fact there IS no real basis FOR that argument?

We both agree that ideas about Hell and eternal damnation are hideous, and that prosyletization is intrusive. We agree on virtually every important matter. I don't mind in the least that you are an atheist. It does not threaten me. I would rather deal with a sensible atheist...or a sensible religious person...than a NOT sensible atheist or religious person! I DON'T CARE ONE DAMN WAY OR THE OTHER WHETHER THE PERSON IS RELIGIOUS OR ATHEISTIC AS LONG AS THE PERSON IS SENSIBLE AND REASONABLE.

What would threaten me would be this: if you were dishonest, hostile, abusive, unfriendly, violent or in any other way troublesome...not whether or not you are an atheist. It doesn't frikkin' matter! Your atheism is not an issue for me.

We have no real argument, in my opinion, but you seem very eager to find a way to prove that we do.

"I see no reason why I should not be openly positive about my views"

Nor do I! Needless to say.

So, what is your line of business?

'Theism infiltrates virtually every area of our lives'

It DOES???? Good golly, I hadn't noticed that. I was not aware of the looming crisis posed by rampant theism in Canada. Yikes! Time to man the barricades, is it? You sound like George Bush or Dick Cheney talking about Al Queda or something. Could it be that your hostility toward the imagined boogeyman of theism is making you see it lurking under every bush and looming like a titan over society, while I go about from day to day and barely even notice its presence? Why? Because I'm not scared of it, that's why. It does not frighten me in the least. If I was scared of it, I bet I'd see it everywhere too.

Just be who you are and be happy with what you are. That's all anyone has to do in life.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 01:34 AM

And if that won't do it, if that won't provide some resolution to this apparently futile attempt to communicate, then PM me from here on in. This is just getting downright ridiculous, and it can only get a lot worse if 3 or 4 other people jump in.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 03:10 AM

Too late Little Hawk! I 'm jumping back in! I really like you because we do see many things the same and have similar attitudes about some things. We are greatly divided on other issues but that does not mean we cannot converse civilly! People can disagree without being disagreeable.

I wholeheartedly support the concept of freedom of speech. Ideas, theories and beliefs should have feet of their own upon which to stand. You can attack ideas, etc. and even knock them down, if you are able, without attacking the person. If someone is so heavily invested in his ideas that he sinks or swims with them, so be it, just so long as the attack remains on the idea and not upon the person.

I'm looking at your examples now LH and this is what I see:

"Your clothes are ugly." could imply that the speaker believes the wearer has bad taste. More accurate would be "In my opinion your clothes are ugly." which removes the possibility of personal attack. It might even be a qualified opinion such as "I am a clothes designer and in my opinion, your clothes are ugly." or it could even be a considered and considerate opinion, "I am a fashion designer and I think I could offer some suggestions on how to improve your wardrobe. However if you are happy with your clothes please know that this is just my personal opinion."

Theism does permeate and touch every aspect of every life whether we recognize it or not. It is a part of the language and language symbols we use. Consider Greek and Roman mythology and how it is often reflected in art and conversation and psychology (especially Jungian). Take the word "gas". We use it all the time but it comes to us from the word chaos and Chaos was the mythical being that dominated existence before creation. It's there whether you recognize it or not. Or psychology! "Psyche" the spirit! Logos, the word, the knowledge of, the study of. The importance of Jerusalem (Jah's Peace) or Rome (founded by Romulus and Remus), San Francisco ( the city of Saint Francis) Philadelphia, the planets, the stars, everything. You cannot get away from it.

I also agree that those who get in your face and try to make a hard sell about anything and especially religion find instant and irreversible opposition from myself, personally. A polite "Not interested" is the only civility they will receive from me. I goes downhill form there. If someone wants to discuss religion or some other topic I am interested in OK, but that is my choice, choice being the key word.

Well, it's late and I feel myself starting to ramble so, uh, PM me if you have anything else to say!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Mrrzy
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 09:09 AM

What are the things one CAN be "absolutely sure" about?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Wesley S
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 09:26 AM

Death and taxes.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Bill D
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 10:53 AM

"Life is a toil and love is a trouble.
Beauty will fade, and riches will flee.
Pleasures, they dwindle and prices, they double,
And nothing is as I would wish it to be"


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 11:24 AM

"Only drowning men could see Him"...."And He sank beneath your wisdom, like a stone,,,"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czQoGSYBeHU&feature=related

bob


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 11:56 AM

Bee:

One answer is for the same reason that De gustibus non disputandum. Matters of metaphysical belief are not comparable one to another because they are individual personal constructs, born out of the individual's creative center, often on a deep, unexamined instinctive level.

This is what makes them vulnerable to analytical attacks.

It really comes down to whether you feel annoyed enough to start a scrap. Doing so for sheer exercise or enjoyment is certainly your own perrogative and there is no inherent value for or against doing so. It's a risk that any proselytizer takes and should understand he is taking when he wants to trumpet his version of metaphysics at you.

Personally I think such an impulse is driven by personal lack of confidence and is a sort of pseudo solution to being unsure of one's own viewpoint, or more likely of having fallen for the trap of "social proof" from other, similar, people, rather than individual exploration. A mind is a terrible thing to rent.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: TheSnail
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 12:23 PM

At the start of this thread I said -

Ed, go to the zoo and rattle your walking stick along the bars of the tiger cage if that's the sort of fun you want.

Do you see what I mean yet, Ed?


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 01:44 PM

"Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence." Albert Einstein


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 03:32 PM

Bob:

THat may well be true; but it does not mean that everyone who experiences the opposition of mediocre minds is by that evidence a great spirit. Sometimes the mediocre minds like to gang up on mediocre spirits, too.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 04:00 PM

Amos: I think Al was referring to those who had connected with the Great Spirit...But who am I to say? Faith is the evidence of things not seen...


"Let Go. Let God..." - Silent Unity


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 04:10 PM

Black Elk...
http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=167466421


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 04:33 PM

Amos, I find that "religionists" often find much greater AGREEMENT with others about their experiences and beliefs than the other way around. Even within the great religions the denominational differences are usually about small matters and personal quibbles, form rather than substance. Your idea of analytical attack can and does apply verbatim in the scientific community with equal force and result. Professional jealously, "publish or perish", being first, Nobel sainthood, etc. It all goes to demonstrate that we are humans and imperfect creatures (or "beings", if you prefer). We see through a glass as darkly (or we have incomplete knowledge, if you prefer).

Bill D writes:

    "Life is a toil and love is a trouble.
      Beauty will fade, and riches will flee.
      Pleasures, they dwindle and prices, they double,
      And nothing is as I would wish it to be"

As Job put it:
      
      "Yet man is born unto trouble,
       as the sparks fly upward." Job 5:7

The commonality of human experience is one of the things that has made the Bible so enduring as well as endearing. It doesn't portray mankind as how it would LIKE things to be but rather how they ARE. King David was an adulterer and a murderer. Hosea's wife was a whore. Judah used prostitutes. On and on with no punches pulled. Good and bad and often in the same person. Noah getting plastered, conniving Jacob. It's all there in black and white.

Amos, when you solve the problem of the broken symmetries and elucidate TOE, when you have created life from inanimate substance then I will have reason to consider things your way. But I'm not holding my breath.


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 04:44 PM

I'm afraid I don't know what "TOE" means, in this context, Slag. And I am also afraid you have mistaken me for a materialist hardhead, which I am not. The "asymmetries" you speak of are what, exactly?


All I was doing in my previous point was pointing out an implied logical fallacy.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Slag
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 05:37 PM

TOE, The Theory of Everything, the holy grail of physics. The broken symmetries are a subject for an entirely different thread and perhaps an entirely different forum. Check out the work being done on string theory, SU sub 3 (as I can't write subscript with this program) the Eightfold Path, theoretical physics in general. I am not purporting to understand it completely myself. Much is far beyond my poor capabilities but I do grasp the concepts and what it means philosophically and epistemologically. Boiled down it means that the more we know the more we realize how little we know. It also means that every now and then a paradigm of scientific understanding gets turned over and the scientific community is confronted with a major overhaul of their basic assumptions. As Alice said, "Curiouser and curiouser!"


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 07:01 PM

Slag:

Given that you have made assumptions about my way of viewing things that appear to be well wide of the mark; and given that your grasp of those asymmetries sounds pretty shaky; and given that I have a perfectly workable theory of everything that seems to satisfy my most burning questions in general about spiritual forces and events as well as things within the normal spacetime continuum; I don't think I will hold my breath worrying about how you see things. I am not trying to shop a theory to anyone.

The eightfold way is a reference to Murray Gell-Mann's theory of the organization of quarks in a hadron, and their relationship to the strong force. It really does not have a lot of epistemological meaning; it is noteworthy because it predicted, mathematically, a particle that was later found to exist.

Eipistemologically, the Noble Eightfold Path, as originally postulaed by Gautam Siddhartha, is more interesting, IMO.

The Special Unary group SU(3) doesn't need a subscript. It is matrix notation for a set matrix with three elements in n2-1 dimesnions. It is the mathematical description for the octets that Gell-Mann settled on in describing the relationships table of the hadron.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: GUEST,Chicken Charlie
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 05:17 PM

John Hardly--Is jam in Goshen anything like balm in Gilead?

Amos--Does this help you know where to put your capo if you want to play in Fb?

Peace--Loved the binary thing. Like, "There are three kinds of people in this world: those who can count and those who can't."

B#B#
As Khayyam said, "Sans wine, sans song, sans cookie and sans end."


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: Amos
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 07:14 PM

Lox:

You put in your pocket for Fb. Just don't clamp it on anything int here...


A


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Subject: RE: BS: I'd like to believe that there is a God
From: John Hardly
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 08:25 PM

"John Hardly--Is jam in Goshen anything like balm in Gilead?"

Exactly! Except that it doesn't have the same meter.


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