So You Believe in the Nothing

Coal Sack dark nebula, found in the Crux constellation. It looks like a great void of nothing, but really it is a dark cloud blocking the light of the Milky Way, beyond.
Coal Sack dark nebula, found in the Crux constellation. It looks like a great void of nothing, but really it is a dark cloud blocking the light of the Milky Way, beyond. | Source

Then again, maybe you don't. But if you are an atheist, you do. What?

Let me explain.

For some, God is a big "nothing." He is invisible and, for the atheist, non-existent. Is this the nothing to which I refer?

For the atheist, there was no source to the universe. It merely exists. For some, it always existed. Prior to the Big Bang was a Crushing Collapse. And the universe has been expanding and collapsing forever.

God's Universe
God's Universe

A scientist's view of God's universe. A refreshing treat for the mind and the soul.

 
Indescribable (Illustrated Edition): Encountering the Glory of God in the Beauty of the Universe
Indescribable (Illustrated Edition): Encountering the Glory of God in the Beauty of the Universe

The beauty of the universe combined with inspirational words and scientific descriptions.

 

Is there a limit to the mass which can be contained by an event horizon? Do black holes have an upper limit? If so, when a black hole reaches that limit, does it explode? Otherwise, a universal collapse should result in merely another black hole of universal mass. Nothing could escape that collapse—not even the universe.

Whether time is finite, bounded on one end by the Big Bang, or whether it is infinite, the atheist claims that the universe had no cause. Unlike everything else discussed in science, the universe is the one effect for which there is no source. Nothing caused it. Curious.

It just happened.

Sounds like a bumper sticker I once saw in L.A. "Stuff" happens. This sounds pretty Zen—the effect for which there is no cause. Here is the new bumper sticker: "Universe Happens." Now, it sounds as though we are neck deep in a whole lot of stuff—a universe of it.

If you believe that the universe just happened, then you believe in the Nothing that caused it all. Sounds like a religion to me.

Cosmology
Cosmology

A monumental book full of intellectual thrills.

 
Relativity, Gravitation and Cosmology: A Basic Introduction (Oxford Master Series in Physics)
Relativity, Gravitation and Cosmology: A Basic Introduction (Oxford Master Series in Physics)

If you want to learn how Relativity fits into the grand scheme of things, this book is a keeper.

 

I Don't Know

Perhaps a more intelligent point-of-view is that of "I don't know"—agnostic, rather than atheistic. This contains a great deal of humility. And what a beautiful thing for a scientist. This is the standard operating basis of a scientist. This is compatible with the rules of scientific method. Too bad that scientists are too frequently socially and professionally so unscientific. How can I say that? In a word—skepticism.

A scientist should be neutral about the unknown, but they are not. They are biased. Scientific method cautions against any bias, but the foremost tool of science—skepticism—contains a bias—that of doubt. Doubt is not neutral. Restraint and humility are.

The Dark Side

It gets worse. The benign form of skepticism used by most scientists looks a lot like restraint, but with a dash of doubt thrown in. Science has done quite well with this imperfect paradigm. But skepticism has a dark side.

All too often, you will read an article about some scientist up in arms, ridiculing another scientist or group of scientists for presenting ideas which are "obviously" crazy. But how do they know? Shebam, the all-seeing, has spoken. This happened recently when NASA scientists reported on a microbe which seemed to thrive in an arsenic environment. And yes, some scientists went crazy with ridicule. What happened to skepticism? They can aim that "cannon" at other scientists, but carefully forget to use it on their own ideas.

Even the current laws of science are not immune to question. Newtonian physics got revamped by Einsteinian Relativity. Self-skepticism is far better than ridicule, and self-restraint is even better.

This type of rowdiness also happened in North American anthropology with the Clovis-first dogma. For awhile, if you did not bow down to the Clovis "god," you were ridiculed. Who is going to fund a scientist who remains a laughing stock? If you wanted to remain in your chosen field, you towed the party line. Excommunication from this church meant finding a new career. That's not science. That's ego. That's arrogance.

When a scientist goes on such a rampage, it looks a lot like delusions of grandeur. Remember Shebam, the all-seeing? How do they know? Some scientists speak without even looking.

 

Mechanics of Creation: zero over n raised to the minus-one power. in the Numerator= Cause; Denominator= Effect. Inner expression reveals initial condition -- the conceptualization. Resulting value is the finished creation. Copyright Rod Martin, Jr.
Mechanics of Creation: zero over n raised to the minus-one power. in the Numerator= Cause; Denominator= Effect. Inner expression reveals initial condition -- the conceptualization. Resulting value is the finished creation. Copyright Rod Martin, Jr.

Formula for Creation

From my extensive experience with "miracles"—the mechanics of creation—I have devised in symbolic form an expression for creation. This is my current, working hypothesis.

(0/n)-1

Zero over "n" raised to the minus-one power. There you have it—the secret to the universe. Isn't it beautiful in its simplicity? Don't you want to rush right out and create something? But what does it mean?

This is not a normal mathematical expression, though it possesses similar properties. The bar separates cause from effect—cause on top, effect on the bottom.

Zero symbolizes the Nothing. The letter "n" signifies "anything."

The expression, "0/n," tells us that the Nothing as cause and something (the "anything") as effect, results in zero persistence. This is the "word" or "idea"—the template or blueprint—of that something.

The negative exponent does here what it always does in normal mathematics—it yields for us the reciprocal or inverse—n/0. Here, the Nothing is at effect and the something is at cause. This would prove to be the phenomenon of "observer and observed," that is, if the Nothing were a conscious entity.

One curious feature of this resulting expression is that it is symbolically equivalent with infinity. Okay, math purists will complain that this expression remains undefined, but in my symbolism, it represents infinity. After all, as the denominator approaches zero, the value of the expression approaches infinity. The intent here is to represent that the created something now has potentially infinite persistence. It now belongs to the time-stream of physical reality.

Applied mechanics would work like this. You get a mental image of the desired "something," then let that image go. Let me break that down for you. As in many a motivational seminar's goal setting sessions, you picture your goal as if it were already a done deal. Beyond that, the real trick is to let go of the idea with the conviction that it is as good as done. No worries. Conscious awareness turns to some other activity, while one's attention (sub-conscious) remains on the "something." Then, one observes the manifestation of the "something" in physical reality. Nothing could be simpler, right?

Wrong! As humans, we make it entirely complex. Humans are a mixed bag. They consist of a Homo sapiens body (that's the obvious part), but also an ego (too frequently obvious). Neither of these physical constructs can create. They are cogs in the machine. Only the Nothing can create. Could there be a bit of the Nothing inside us, occasionally waking up to create something.

Like the pesky, "intermittent bug" in software parlance, such apparent "magic" happens rarely enough and intermittently enough to cause some "believers" to ridicule the possibility of such things. Who are these "believers?" They are atheists and other skeptics who "believe" in the Nothing. And remember, "Nothing" created it all.

So You Believe in the Nothing

Welcome to the club. Most of the people on planet Earth also believe in the Nothing. Comforting thought, that.

Rod Martin, Jr. is a past Hollywood artist, software engineer and award-winning essayist from Texas, USA. Mr. Martin currently lives with his wife in Cebu, Philippines. He is also the author of the forthcoming book, The Bible's Hidden Wisdom, God's Reason for Noah's Flood.http://www.GenesisCode.Net.

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Comments 141 comments

H P Roychoudhury profile image

H P Roychoudhury 5 years ago from Guwahati, India

The expression is interesting no doubt even though complex and complicated. Creativity originates out of nothing that does not require the mere presence. The invisible electron is running the computer software and so on.


pisean282311 profile image

pisean282311 5 years ago

well why do you think atheist believe there was nothing before creation...atheist simply reject god theory...for religion god is constant...always there and period...but god cannot be always there ...something has to cause god too...every effect has a cause but that same effect becomes cause for another effect...if you light the fire ..it burns...so suppose a jungle burns ...we say cause was fire but what was cause of fire?...it requires something to cause fire...and what caused that something and it is on and on...answer to this is too speculation , one of that is constant and another is from philosophy of universe ending and same end causing new beginning...but again we are left with what is starting point...


Poppy Ariella 5 years ago

Very interesting Uncle Carl. I love the mathmatical expression of creation. Although, according to the first law of Thermodynamics, there is no such thing as nothing. First law of thermodynamics states:

'Energy can be neither created nor destroyed. It can only change forms.' This suggests that what is has always been. Interesting, n'est pas?


TheManWithNoPants profile image

TheManWithNoPants 5 years ago from Tucson, Az.

Carl,

I'm still sitting here with my mouth open like Tarzan seeing his first airplane. I'm going to have to let this sink in for a few days, and let the fog clear. This was jam packed with thought. I found myself some what organically stoned. Poppy brought in some seventh grade science that sobered me up a little, so I'll be okay. My friend, if you didn't win over any atheist with this hub, you damn sure intimidated them with your intelligence. My wife won't have anything to do with the Hub, but she reads your work, and enjoys it as much as I do. Keep up the good work. I'll get up to speed! Thumbs up, awesome, and very useful

jim


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@H P Roychoudhury, thank you for your input. In calculus, 3D matrix math and statistics I've seen far more complicated expressions. Even the "simple" quadratic equation contains an expression 5-6 times more complicated.

You said, "Creativity originates out of nothing that does not require the mere presence." I agree "out of nothing," but "presence" of what? If you imply that creation occurs without a source, then you believe in the Nothing. Of course, my article was partly a pun on "nothing."


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@pisean282311, thanks for an engaging comment. Why do I think atheists believe there was nothing before creation? I didn't say that. I said that some think the universe is infinite and cyclical. That's hardly nothing. I did say, however, that atheists do not attribute a cause.

Your question is funny. You say, "before creation." The word "creation" implies a source or creator. It wasn't the tooth fairy.

Why does something have to cause God? God is not an effect. God is superior to cause and effect. He is the source of all sources. But what is God? Could it be that He is really us—the sleeping immortals, within?

Your analysis of cause and effect is good, but very first grade. And the Earth was formed from the dust cloud which was the product of a supernova, which was a massive, short-lived star, which was the product of an earlier dust cloud, which was the product of an earlier supernova, and so on for a few generations of regurgitated matter. And before that, the Big Bang. But where did the Bang come from? What put into place the properties of space and time, the laws of particle physics and the interaction of energy and mass?

You end with, "…we are left with what is starting point." And that is the point of my article. What is the source or starting point? What is the cause for the whole package we call "physical reality?" If as atheists imply, there was no cause, I find that really hard to believe. Suddenly a nothingness, without conscious intention, accidentally went Bang and gave birth to the universe? That's scary. Could such a nothingness suddenly Bang in the middle of our current universe, destroying all galaxies? I don't think so.

This belief in "no cause" for the effect we see as physical reality is what I find peculiar and a little unbelievable. Atheists seem to be missing the bigger picture.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Poppy, my darling niece. So good to hear from you. And thanks for some interesting input.

In some respects, there is a certain "nothing" between stars. Perhaps space is not completely empty, but it is close to it in some places—this would constitute a "nothing" with regards to energy and mass. The law of conservation of energy and mass (epitomized by Einstein's famous equation E = mc^2) did not magically exist, I think. Could it be that this and all the other "laws" of physical reality have a source? They are the effect for which God is the cause. My article jokes about the Nothing being the "cause." This was playing with the idea of "no cause" versus a big No-thing being the cause.

The only thing superior to the laws of thermodynamics is that which created those laws. This "creator" was not the tooth fairy, gremlins, or accident. That's my hypothesis. It was God.

But what is God? Wow, what a question! Could God be us? The real us, deep inside? The sleeping immortal which occasionally is a source of "magic"—bending or breaking those laws of physical reality?


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Jim,

Good to hear from you, my friend. I understand the "mouth open" bit. A magical incident on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, in 1977 had me a bit overwhelmed. It took me over thirty years to wrap my mind around it. We are indeed children of God with the ability to create anything, except that mortal ego gets in the way to foul things up. With ego, there is selfishness even in its acts of generosity. This stands in the way.

When an atheist who is interested only in spouting their viewpoint rather than searching for truth attempts to use the mechanics of creation, they will be operating from the ego viewpoint; nothing happens. When a humble servant of God, faithful in His love, attempts such "magic," they are operating from the true self—the awakened immortal within; the results are instantaneous. With such awakening, they are "walking with God"—they are "one with God."

Carl

(Rod Martin, Jr.)


pisean282311 profile image

pisean282311 5 years ago

@lone77star i think my question before creation landed incorrectly...what i meant with before creation is before creation of present universe which can be very well end cycle of previous universe and god being above cause and effect is good in concept but not proven and so cannot be debated with logic...it is like assuming constant...it works in we see from that view point but not necessarily answers questions..yes we can say it is one of possible answers and perhaps best answer human brain can think till now but in future?..well no one knows...


Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 5 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

lone77star: As a Christian and as a believer that there is a God, a God who created everything, I'm still waiting for the other shoe to drop, for the punchline in this little story of yours. Maybe I missed the point, I don't know. Atheists well I don't know if they know what they believe or don't believe, they choose out of stubborn unwillingness to believe in anything and to try and destroy and tear down the beliefs of others, because they are built on faith and fact rather than just fact.


Betty Johansen profile image

Betty Johansen 5 years ago

You're a philosopher-mathmetician-scientist. And you're way over my head, but I enjoy reading your hubs, trying to opening up my understanding with new ideas. Thanks for writing.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

I really like your discourse about humility and agree that humility indeed is the best starting point for analysis.

But I wonder if it has occured to you that expressing a first cause - and worse yet claiming to know what that first cause actually was (god) - is the polar opposite of humility - in fact it is extreme arrogance to claim to hold that knowledge.

In humility, the best humans can do is try to explain rationally what may have been the case. Positing an original first cause supernatural being is simply an irrational explanation. The rational explanation is there was no beginning - the universe is eternal.

True, this goes against current thought, but current thought held to the geocentric model of the universe for 2000 years while creating more and more mini-theories to cover up the discrepancies in the base theory.


TahoeDoc profile image

TahoeDoc 5 years ago from Lake Tahoe, California

By definition an atheist says "I have no belief in god". An agnostic says "I have no knowledge of god". Anything beyond that about what they believe is speculation and is bound to vary from person to person.

Other than that, I was going to say what Winston said. The cosmological argument, and the variant Kalam cosmological argument have been around for a long time. Even if you accept it, the leap of faith still must occur when you assume first cause has to be your god. I agree, that it is more arrogant to think you know what first cause is, instead of not knowing or even saying "I have no belief in god". I would never presume to know anything so beyond my comprehension. I will not accept an answer as correct just because it happens to be prevelant in my time and geographic domain, or because of parentage. I cannot know, I do not know and I will not be arrogant enough to think I have the answer.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@pisean282311, thanks for the beautiful clarification. Well put.

While the existence of God may not be provable by science, I think the subject can be discussed logically. In fact, you have made several logical statements on the subject. So, you've disproven your own assertion. My whole article was a tongue-in-cheek, punny, dissertation on the logic of a supreme source of creation. So, like you, I have debated the possibility of God using logic.

If there is a God, and it is my personal belief that there is, I still don't know the exact nature of the Big Guy. Heck, He could be the aggregate total of all of us put together—all spiritual consciousness. Rene Descartes seemed to think so, when he said, "Dieu en moi" (God in me).

Does not answer questions? Hmmm-m-m, then your questions are not as interesting as my questions (in my not-so-humble opinion). If you've read my Anatomy of a Miracle, how do you explain such a thing without God-like abilities at work? Aliens listening to my thoughts? Telepathic mind control? Quantum connection through my mind finding the right frequency of brain waves? I suppose any one of these could work as a hypothesis. But prove any of them? Not likely.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Dave, I'm afraid the punchline is out there—way, way out there. Such is the danger of puns and oblique humor.

As a scientist, I can relate to scientists and to skeptics. Personally, I've learned to use "restraint" and "humility" as a scientist, rather than skepticism. Skepticism is an imperfect paradigm for science.

Let us be kind to our skeptical friends (and enemies). Some of them are really very, very smart and well-meaning. They may never understand faith, even though they use it all the time. They have faith in the scientific community. They have faith in peer review. They have faith in scientific method. And regrettably, they have faith in skepticism—yes, even its darker side—self-indulgent ridicule. Cut them some slack. Their brawny intelligence sometimes blinds them to what they're really doing. I know, I've been there, done that. Ridicule is ridiculous.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Betty, thanks for the lovely complements. Sometimes I have glimmers of lucidity (called inspiration--"in spirit"). I enjoyed writing it, and glad to share in a little mind stretching.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston,

Thank you for your lovely comments. I agree with them for the most part. You make some good points.

Arrogance? My dear AKA, I get to arrogance all too often. Don't you? The article was a tongue-in-cheek dissertation, full of twists and turns in meaning. It was a big pun. What is God (if He exists)? I don't rightly know. But I do know, from empirical experience that there is a God-like force at work within me. Perhaps Rene Descartes (Cartesian coordinates fame) knew something like this when he said, "dieu en moi."

Could it be that God is really the aggregate of all of our spiritual halves (not the physical)? Is it arrogance to claim to know that there was no God? Then, saying that "positing a god is irrational" would contain a touch of arrogance, also, wouldn't it? And couldn't there be a state outside of the arrogance-humble dichotomy? The great philosopher-scientist, Carl Jung seemed to posit such a possibility. I find his thoughts on the subject quite "rational."

The most humbling events of my life have involved the spiritual. One, for example, finding myself (the true, spiritual me?) outside of my body, and finding myself with the ability to see all the colors and details of the world around me without the crutch of the body's physical eyeballs. No God? Maybe not the God of some people's biblical interpretation. But something spiritual exists. I've seen it and tasted it. That's empiricism, not arrogance. Interpreting my empirical experiences, is another matter. I've worked for three and a half decades on that interpretation.

I've also had some pretty humbling epiphanies in science, too. Like the time I was studying electronic engineering some 35 years ago. As an amateur astronomer, I knew full well about absorption and emission spectra from stars and nebulae. When I read about something called "tank circuits" in my engineering coursework, I immediately knew that I was surrounded by trillions of tank circuits, all in the same room where I sat. I dare say, not many of my fellow students would have had that realization.

And how could I "know" such a thing? Well, I have "faith" in the findings of science. Such an epiphany-founded knowledge is quite rational.

Is positing an original first cause supernatural being really an irrational explanation? It can be, but it is not necessarily so. For a primitive to think up such a religion based on his lack of understanding of the rhythms and chaotic events of nature, might be described as "primitive," but possibly not "irrational." It might very well be a very reasoned conclusion.

You say, "THE rational explanation" (emphasis mine) as if there is only one. As a scientist, I've seen multiple hypotheses for phenomena so many times that I have to laugh when someone says, "the only answer" or "THE rational explanation."

Your "universe is eternal" hypothesis is only one hypothesis. And not "THE" rational explanation that you make it out to be. I think scientists have "reasoned" other possibilities. I've read of a few—steady state, cyclical, finite (starting with the Big Bang), etc.

But your argument side-steps the theme of my article—what is the "cause" of the universe? Is there no cause? Even if the universe is infinite (a point I broached in my article, by the way), did nothing cause that infinite phenomenon? Did it merely exist of its own (or no) accord?

Spatially, there may not be an "outside" of this universe, but conceptually we can talk of such an idea. The current cosmological theory held in favor tells us that the universe is finite and unbounded. Three-dimensional space is like the two-dimensional surface of a balloon. As the balloon expands, all points in its space (the surface) get farther and farther apart, but in the realm of that surface, there is no "center." The effective "center" may be in a different dimension outside of that "surface." A pretty slick concept.

Every effect science studies has a cause. I find it more difficult to imagine a universe that has no cause, than one that has an intelligent source. Being trapped in the continuity-bound physical realm, it's hard to imagine anything that does not have the same continuity as space, time, momentum, inertia, etc. If a creator exists, he would have to exist in a discontinuous realm, outside of space-time—a "place" where there is no beginning or end—a "place" where the concept of "place" or "location" is likely foreign.

You said, "…current thought held to the geocentric model." I take it that you mean, "ONCE current thought." I think most of us are over the geocentric delusion. Even the Catholic church has let go of that idea. It may have once been rational, but it is now irrational in light of all the evidence to the contrary.

@AKA Winston, I hope you will come by more often. I enjoy your input. It stretches my mind. And I hope the feeling is mutual.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@TahoeDoc, thank you for joining the party. Lovely to see you here.

I like your definitions. An added dimension to the agnostic might be to have them say, "I think it's impossible to know if God exists." Huxley's "agnostic" was coined "from the prefix a-, meaning 'without, not,' as in amoral, and the noun Gnostic. Gnostic is related to the Greek word gnosis, 'knowledge.'" There is a beautiful, though curiously blind humility in that belief. Can one be humble without blindness?

I think so. I have experienced a state which I can only describe as "humble confidence." At first, when I coined the term, I thought it was an oxymoron. Upon thorough inspection, though, I found it to be quite valid for my empirical experience in spiritual matters.

Later, I considered the possibility that my observations could have been entirely hallucinations, but that possibility does not haunt me. I am quite comfortable with a great big unknown right next to a very beautiful known and neighbors with a whole lot of speculation and hypotheses.

What if you, @TahoeDoc, are really just dreaming your life (a la "The Matrix"), then many of our arguments would be entirely moot. Heck, instead of typing this reply to your wonderful comments, I could instead be sitting in a padded cell somewhere dreaming all of this "Earth" thing out of nothing. Ah, speculation.

But let's get real. As you indicated, shades of belief are likely as varied as the grains of sand on all the beaches of the world. Not only are my beliefs different from yours, but my beliefs are different from my own of only a few weeks ago.

I agree that a certain "leap of faith" must occur to "assume" first cause has to be my God. But what is "my" God. It certainly is not the same as the "God" of most Christians. They have a distorted view ("distorted" from my viewpoint) of the "God" I posit as a possible source for this universe. But one does not have to "assume" a first cause; one can merely hypothesize a first cause. Big difference.

And, I'm sure you will agree, there is a big difference between "I have no belief in god," and "I know for a fact that God does not exist." And some atheists say the one, but act the other. Could it be that some are acting the other when they say that "positing a God is irrational?"

You said, "I would never presume to know anything so beyond my comprehension." That is a lovely sentiment, in all its humility. And you also say, "I will not accept an answer as correct just because it happens to be prevalent," which is lovely in all its arrogance. Or is it arrogance? Can we merely be confident in not knowing? Can we be comfortable that there are some things that are simply not known? Of course we can.

And, of course, we can have faith in the findings of science. Ooooh-h-h, "faith!" I've never seen an atom, but I have faith that they're there. Why? Because I understand electronics, absorption and emission spectra, and covalent bonds. I understand the mechanics of heat-transference, the simplicity of crystalline structure and the power of nuclear energy (both fusion and fission-based). Good stuff, all of it. This is reality. To ignore it is tantamount to delusion. What does "delusion" mean other than being ignorant of, or oblivious to, reality?

Perhaps I would be acting delusional if I ignored the empirical experiences of my life that prove to me my spiritual nature. I may not have seen an atom, but I have seen the universe without my mortal eyes. I have produced numerous "miracles" which confound the laws of science. How are such things possible? Could it be the formation of hyper-tachyons from the unique frequencies of my brain waves? Possibly, but that sounds far more hokey and contrived than to say that it came from the immortal child of God within—at least with the sum total of my experiences.

I still don't know what God is, but I kinda think there is some kind of creator thing behind the existence of the physical universe. I could be wrong. I could be delusional in my padded cell, chatting with you and yours.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

(If a creator exists, he would have to exist in a discontinuous realm, outside of space-time—a "place" where there is no beginning or end—a "place" where the concept of "place" or "location" is likely foreign.)

lone77star,

As with any discussion, definitions are crucial to good understanding. I agree with your assessment of a place where any god creature would have to locate.

In my view, however, (there's always a however don't you know :-)) what you suggest above is accurate but irrational as I use the word rationality. Your suggestion stands outside of what is understood to be possible by what is known of natural law. In other words, to posit such a creature one must accept that anything is a potential, i.e., there are possibilites outside natural laws and in this same creature-world it would also have to be possible to have 4-sided triangles and intersecting parralel lines.

In my world I consider it rational that if P then not-P. If the universe cannot house an immaterial mind (which I hope would be an agreement) that can act on matter then it seems to me disingenuous to try to solve this issue of irrationality by simply claiming an unknown world where rationality is set aside - this tends to sound much like the orthodox theist claim that we simply cannot know god.

In my views, limited possibily=(P) and unlimited possibility=(-P). We know (never totally) our universe is limited by natural laws - once we expand possibilities outside this realm we enter the realm of (-P), and in that realm ontological contradictions must be considered possibilities as the instant you relegate an idea to the impossible pile you are suggesting (P) instead of (-P).

In my opinion one must pick his poison - either we stay within the confines of what is known to be possible, or we speculate about what is unknown, but in so doing must conceded that Allah, Puff the Magic Dragon, and Darth Vader occupy this world, too. Stating that "it's a mystery" is not a rational answer in my opinion.

It is similar (in my head) to the reasons ontological arguments of theism always fail, as the modal property of necessarily the case cannot be applied to the contingent proposition, "it is possible". If it is possible it must also be not possible and all that can be proved is the necessity of a possibility. Therefore, all one can prove with the ontological argument is that "If there is a god, there is a god". Hardly earth-shattering information.


Joyus Crynoid profile image

Joyus Crynoid 5 years ago from Eden

Good stuff lone77star. I just published a hub that makes a similar point. From my perspective God is nothing. Strangely enough, I don't consider myself an atheist!


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston, thank you for the lovely dissertation. I agree that definitions are crucial in any communication. A diplomatic talk between Brits and Yanks many years ago almost fell apart because of opposing definitions of the verb "to table." One meant "to discuss" and the other meant "to set aside for later." Talk about frustrating! I think, under other circumstances, they might have strangled each other from the aggravation.

Okay, so you did not define "rationality." Fess up! What is it? What's your definition?

And your arguments about the futility of debating hypotheses based on hypotheses is well understood and something we really don't need to discuss at length. A hypothesis based on empirical evidence can be valuable.

So, let's get simple: Do you think the universe exists, but did not have a cause? If so, on what do you base your hypothesis? How many causeless effects are there in the universe? Personally, I can't think of any. Or would you posit that the universe is not an effect, but that "it" is the creator? I hope you will attempt to answer each one of these. This will help me understand.

And here's another simple (but loaded) question. So far, you've been discussing a "god-like source" as purely theoretical. What if you had evidence of god-like powers? I do. How do you explain with your definition of "rationality" the existence of spiritual phenomena like the one I described in my last comment to you, or in my Anatomy of a Miracle hub?

I can understand an aversion to "faith" in the unseen. The ability to create miracles demands such faith. You can't even begin to do something like that with skepticism. Skepticism is the wrong tool.

In a scientific laboratory, you need to have the right ingredients to make an experiment work. Right? That's simple, but scientists are missing the boat by a million light years thinking that they can bring skepticism to an experiment which requires faith. That spraying water on an experiment involving flame. And they laugh at the impossibility of the flame. The doubt inherent in skepticism is the antithesis of faith. This is why the CIA scientists failed to succeed in developing their "Remote Viewing" program. That would have been a cool spy tool. Maybe I'll write a movie about that one.

And the skeptics have the wrong idea when they look at most of the "faithful" for an idea of what "faith" is really about. Most "faithful" have about as much faith as the skeptics.

Definition: Faith—a state of perfect, 100% confidence; without any shred of doubt. This is the viewpoint of creation or cause. It is the viewpoint of perfect knowledge.

Such a state of confidence is not native to the physical universe, but it can operate within the universe. I've done it. Miracles are instantaneous. How does your definition of rationality explain such things?

Like being pregnant, you either are or you are not. There is no in-between. With faith, either you are there are you are not. If you are 99.999999999% confident in something, you are not at "faith"—the confidence needed to walk on water, or to part traffic on one of the busiest streets in the world during rush hour traffic. Even at near-perfect confidence, you get zero result in the realm of creation. But at "faith" you get "100%" created effect or result.

Have you ever taken calculus? There is a state in this discipline called a "discontinuity." There was one graph the professor drew on the blackboard which has stayed with me. You can find a representation of this graph on my Numbers are Beautiful hub, about halfway down. For me, the graph represents in mathematical form the incident I experienced on Wilshire Boulevard in 1977—a miracle of the most profound kind. It represents the quantity of ego (X-axis) graphed against one's power over the physical universe (Y-axis). Only at zero ego does one have more than zero power; and at that point one has potentially infinite power. This is the discontinuous realm of creation contrasted with the continuity-based realm of physical reality.

@AKA Winston, logic (reason, rationality) is so cool. I built a career on it. I graduated summa cum laude in Information Technology—a logic-based discipline. And yet, logic will not get you from here to there in the realm of discontinuity (faith and creation).

You have within you a sleeping immortal. So many humans do that I assume this of you and all skeptics; of course, assumptions can be wrong. With our current Earth population, we may start having bodies born without souls (true-self immortals).

That part of you cannot awaken by being offered proof, logic or reason. You have to want it and have faith in it. That's the paradox that traps the immortal in its mortal shell. To use computer parlance, the sleeping immortal has to pull itself up by its own bootstraps—it has to perform a self-boot in order to awaken. No amount of banging on the desk is going to awaken the sleeping computer. It's an imperfect analogy, but I hope you get the idea.

The reliance on proof and the doubt inherent in skepticism only put the immortal into a deeper sleep.

These are the current working hypotheses that drive my belief system—my current worldview. This is a worldview which is continually refined and improved, and it explains all of the supernatural phenomena of which I've read and experienced. And I've experienced a fair amount which defy logic, reason and purely continuity-based rationality.

Why pick a poison? The realm of creation has its rules just as the realm of physical reality has its own. There is an order and simplicity to the mechanics of creation. You talked of such things as intersecting "parallel" lines. That sounds like an oxymoron—a self-contradictory term. Creation isn't like that. Look at the universe around you. It's full of order, and it came from a creation, in my belief and experience. That's order from ordered thought. That's rationality from a superior reason. But just like any computer program, the programmer can change the code universally or locally at-will. I see a whole lot of rationality there.

And intersecting parallel lines? Perhaps underneath the event horizon of a black hole, two parallel light beams would intersect. Gravity bending space is a wonderful concept. Thanks to Einstein! And thanks to the rules inherent in the universe.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Joyus Crynoid, thanks for reading. Glad you enjoyed it. From my perspective, God is no "thing" and I'm not an atheist, either. Though I do think God is knowable in some respects. I spent more than thirty years attempting to understand a miracle on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, which I describe in my Anatomy of a Miracle.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

lone77star,

What is rational is observer-independent. It contains no ontological contradictions. We can hypothesize about and develope theories that attempt to explain the mechanism(s) of consumated events in rational terms.

My current understanding of the nature of the universe is that it is eternal and thus had no creative cause. (yes, meaning a Doppler effect of redshift and thus expansion are mistakes of interpretation of observations) I base that understanding on a lack of any sustantive contrary explanation that does not violate my insistence on a rational explanation. In other words, it is what must be when you exclude the impossible. And as I explained above, there are only two camps of followers: the anything is possible group and the anything is not possible group. I am firmly in the latter - anything is not a possibility.

Faith is observer-dependent, i.e., it is subjective. Without a rational explanation for how a miracle might occur, a miracle can only be described - and it is described with a religious (or mystical) bias.

(How do you explain with your definition of "rationality" the existence of spiritual phenomena)

Now you have really opened a loaded weapon in that before this can even be discussed the concept of "exist" has to be defined.

I have an unambiguous definition if you don't have one handy: that which has shape and location, i.e., objects.

So first, in this sense an activity (miracle) cannot exist as it is a conceptual explanation of a series of events.

Second, I have personally never witnessed a miracle or a spiritual phenomena, and that is because these are observer-dependent events, i.e., subjective.

When I was young there was a youthful Israeli who claimed to be able to bend spoons using only his mind as a weapon. His name was Uri Geller. I saw him on t.v. and it was quite impressive and appeared supernatural - until a little rational-minded magician named James Randi showed up later to debunk Geller and explained how the illusion was performed and duplicated it without any mysticism.

Geller had even fooled the psychic investigators of the day - and my bet it is because they wanted to believe in the paranormal - and thus they found proof in Geller.

Such is the nature of observations - the interpretation of the action is subjective. Rationality attempts to eliminate as much subjectivity as possible.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Hello 77:

There was a time when I "considered" myself to be an "Atheist."

Now? I know there's no such thing. There are just those who, mistakenly, think they are.

Anyway, during the time that I considered myself to be an "atheist," to this day, I have never thought there was "no source" for the creation of the universe. By the way, which universe do you have ref. to?

How do we know that there are not inumerable "universes" beyond the limits of our own, in limitless space?

We could exist in a cosmos in which "big bangs" are common. They might be happening every nano second...everywhere. They would be comparable to the existence of and in greater numbers than the "bubbles" created when a can of beer is shaken.

The "cosmos" is so indescribably immense, that their explosive creations would never be known by intelligent earth life which will exist in the lifetime of "OUR" universe.

77, this was an interesting "hub" to read, but, the premise i.e. "So You Believe In Nothing," is, RESPECTFULLY, an "absolutely" preposterous assumption when ones considers that we, as yet, "KNOW NOTHING" to believe in.

"WE" exist as an evolving, ignorant, immature, arrogant insidious and ephemeral experiment in the processes of "natural selection."

I enjoyed the read. More pls...:-)

Qwark


AKA Winston 5 years ago

I used this quote from Thomas Paine in my latest hub but thought it might contribute something here, as well, concerning miracles.

"If we are to suppose a miracle to be something so entirely out of the course of what is called nature, that she must go out of that course to accomplish it, and we see an account given of such miracle by the person who said he saw it, it raises a question in the mind very easily decided, which is, is it more probable that nature should go out of her course, or that a man should tell a lie? We have never seen, in our time, nature go out of her course; but we have good reason to believe that millions of lies have been told in the same time; it is therefore, at least millions to one, that the reporter of a miracle tells a lie."

I would say zillions to one, myself.


pisean282311 profile image

pisean282311 5 years ago

@lone77star

first of all I am not atheist..Coming to atheist they dont believe in intelligent force being at work which is known as god...if you say combination of forces is god , m sure none atheist would have objection to it...


A.Villarasa profile image

A.Villarasa 5 years ago from Palm Springs

Hello Mr. Martin:

You've posted another collar-grabber of an article. Thank God it's not my collar you are grabbing. The non-believers out there should be so wary to tangle with you... and now we have AKA Winston implying that you are a liar for believing or experiencing "miracles".

I guess when you ran out of "rational" based arguments, you resort to nasty implications.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 5 years ago from back in the lab again

"For the atheist, there was no source to the universe."

This is, quite simply, not true.

I'm not sure where the Universe came from, I'm not sure what came before the Big Bang if anything at all, however at least I, as an atheist, admit that I do not know rather than conjuring a God to fill the gap in my knowledge.

"And the universe has been expanding and collapsing forever."

This is only one of many ideas being discussed as a possibility. In truth we don't know much about what happened before the Big Bang.

"the atheist claims that the universe had no cause."

Maybe some atheists do but none that I have met and certainly I do not think the Universe had no cause.

"It just happened."

This is, quite simply, not true.

"If you believe that the universe just happened, then you believe in the Nothing that caused it all. Sounds like a religion to me."

That's funny, my dictionary says that a religion requires belief in the supernatural, typically a deity. Atheism has no belief in deities, in fact atheism is the lack of belief in god(s), it's very definition is evidence that it cannot be a religion.

If atheism is a religion than so is theism. But theism isn't a religion is it? Theism is merely a stance on belief in regards to god(s) just as atheism is merely a stance on belief in regards to god(s).

"agnostic, rather than atheistic."

One can be agnostic and an atheist. One can espouse that they do not know while at the same time lacking belief. Just as I do not know whether or not Bigfoot exists but still lack belief in Bigfoot. If you've interacted with atheists for more than a handful of minutes you would know that most of them are agnostics as well. Which leads me to believe that you are either inexperienced in dealing with atheists or you are being willfully dishonest.

"Doubt is not neutral."

I'm honestly not sure how you can purpose such an utterly untrue thing as if it is correct. Doubt is essentially the only neutral thing as it's bias is toward the truth. Skepticism is the same way. Scientists can only follow the evidence, they must rely on facts rather than superstition and speculation and as such must apply skepticism and must doubt any claim. There are claims that should be doubted more than other claims. The more extraordinary a claim the more skeptical we should be of it. If I tell you I have Nessie living in my bathtub that's a fairly extraordinary claim and you should be skeptical of it. The same goes for when someone tells me that Jesus rose from the dead or healed people using divine magic, that's a pretty extraordinay claim and it requires evidence in order for me to accept it.

"What happened to skepticism?"

Sounds to me like the scientists were being skeptical of the findings that were published by the other scientists. Proper skepticism is to be applied to all sides and, this may come as a surprise, not all scientists agree with the methods or findings or hypotheses of other scientists. Again there is a lot that we DO NOT KNOW about a great deal of things. However science is trying to discover what we don't know rather than making shit up the way religion does. Science also has a peer review process so that it can self-check itself, this is one of the reasons science is so much more reliable than any other method of discovery.

"The expression, "0/n," tells us that the Nothing as cause and something (the "anything") as effect, results in zero persistence. This is the "word" or "idea"—the template or blueprint—of that something."

^ This is entirely meaningless gobbledygook. In fact the entire section about the mathematical formula for creating ex nihilo is meaningless.

"Rod Martin, Jr. is a past Hollywood artist, software engineer and award-winning essayist from Texas, USA."

Additional - He likes making blanket generalizations about atheists and what he claims they believe. He also misunderstands skepticism, science and religion.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston, did you read my "Anatomy of a Miracle?" (It's hard to discuss it if you don't know the details.)


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston: Calling me a liar, huh?

At least you did it subtly and with a degree of class. Thank you for that, at least.

But no, I wasn't lying. How can you be sure? Obviously, you can't. One of these days, someone who was there may speak up. And there were at least 2000 L.A. witnesses there. And I know you can say that they are lying, too.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston, do you always lie? Do you understand why I asked this question? Think about it for a moment. And how do we know scientists aren't lying? Many do and some get away with it, despite peer review.

Answer these questions, and then I'll discuss the rest of your wonderful comments.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Qwark, I'm glad you enjoyed this piece. Interesting that you think there is no such thing as an atheist. Please tell me more. How are self-proclaimed "atheists" mistaken?

If a thinking, immortal being did not "create" the universe, then how did it "happen?" This is one of those unanswerable paradoxes, if you discount a "creator."

Innumerable universes? Why not? How would we ever know of those other universes? My favorite answer to this is Heinlein's "Number of the Beast."

@Qwark, you said, "the premise i.e. 'So You Believe In Nothing,' is, RESPECTFULLY, an 'absolutely' preposterous assumption when ones considers that we, as yet, 'KNOW NOTHING' to believe in." This is an interesting idea, and I'd like to know more, but from the frame of reference which most of us use, there are many beliefs at work, so it is not preposterous within that frame of reference. Explain your idea, if you can (by analogy, or otherwise).

Your words sound very erudite, but the meaning remains vapid to my mind. Please pump some life into the meaning so I can understand. You have a willing student, here. I want to understand.

But understand this: miracles are easy when you are not being an "evolving, ignorant, immature, arrogant insidious and ephemeral experiment in the processes of 'natural selection.'" Ego and the Homo sapiens body with which it is associated are all of these things you mention. The rarely seen, sleeping immortal within is none of these. When that true self awakens, all manner of miracles are possible.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@pisean282311, you make an interesting point. I would be interested to see an atheist react this way to the composite idea of God.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@A. Villarasa — Thanks, Alexander. I appreciate the input. I don't think (and I could be wrong) that AKA Winston was being nasty when he wrote it, though we can have fun with him for implying such. He was relatively cordial in putting across his viewpoint. Many others would not be so objective in their declaration.

I hope a grab a few collars with this one, but at the same time, I want to engage them in a discussion, like the very thoughtful discussions of AKA Winston and the following one from Titen-Sxull. Some seem to miss the dry humor intended by this piece. I was messing with definitions, pointedly so.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the piece, and I thank you for leaving your comments. You are always welcome, and I value your input.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Titen-Sxull, I am so pleased you stopped by and left such a thoughtful comment. I intended the piece to be thought-provoking, and it has accomplished that, gauging by the comments, so far. I really want to be enlightened by your point-of-view, so I hope you will answer all of my questions.

The piece was also intended to be tongue-in-cheek, dry humor. It seems to have missed on this. I need to work on the humor part it looks like. I guess I was being too oblique in my messing with definitions.

Thanks for attempting to correct my definitions of things such as atheism and agnosticism. I appreciate the information, but as I said, the point was to create a pun by altering definitions, not to act as a dictionary. Sorry for the confusion.

You said, "I'm not sure what came before the Big Bang if anything at all…" and in that statement ("…if anything…") you leave the door open to "nothing at all" preceding the Big Bang as one possibility. Did you mean to do this? Certainly, we have no "evidence" for what might have happened before the Bang. Likely the Big Bang obliterated any evidence in the early inferno. But how can "nothing" lead to the Big Bang? This is one possibility, according to your statement. Or did I misunderstand?

I understand that atheists do not believe in a god. That part is quite simple. I also know that some, if not most atheists, are agnostic. That's also quite simple. The idea that something is impossible to know has always disconcerted me. I figured that with sufficient study and logic, one could devise a way to know just about anything. I'm a bit "unreasonable" when it comes to barriers.

Now most (but not all) atheists with whom I've discussed God and gods seem to make a point of ridiculing those who do believe. Frankly, I don't know the exact nature of the creator of this universe. I don't yet have enough knowledge. But with all that I've discovered so far about miracles and spirituality, I think such just might be knowable. That's my working assumption.

To ridicule others for their belief in something seems to me to go beyond agnosticism. They may say they are agnostic, when really they are acting as if they "know" there is no god and anyone who believes in such is stupid. Agnostic means it is impossible to know in that area, but they are acting as if they do know. Not very agnostic. I've known some very stupid people who believe in God. I've also known a few stupid people who were atheists. Stupidity is not the defining factor, here. I've known some very intelligent people in both camps, too.

You said, "… rather than conjuring a God to fill the gap in my knowledge." While it is true that many cultures have invented (conjured) gods to explain things in nature—god of the wind, god of the sun, etc., this does not mean that all cultures have "conjured" their god. By your incomplete statement you are revealing a prejudice (bias) against the existence of a real God. By the nature of your dismissal, you are betraying a prejudice (bias) which is in itself an "argument to ignorance" (a logical fallacy).

I don't know if star HR 6585 has planets orbiting it, but I take scientists' word that it has at least two. I could say, I admit that I do not know (because I have not seen those planets with my own eyes), rather than conjuring planets to fill the gap in my knowledge. I would be betraying a prejudice against the reports of scientists.

Judaism holds true the words of the Torah (the basis of the Judeo-Christian Bible). In it, God represented Himself on numerous occasions. I wasn't there, so I cannot vouch for the veracity of the reporters there. By the same token, I cannot vouch for the veracity of the work of scientists on the subject of planet hunting.

You quoted what I wrote and then commented, "'And the universe has been expanding and collapsing forever.' This is only one of many ideas being discussed as a possibility."

Now, if you will re-read paragraph 4 of my article, you will see that I say as much myself—that it is only one possibility. The key: "For some, it always existed" (a very specific belief). I compared this with those who believe that the universe merely exists (a more generalized belief).

You said, "In truth we don't know much about what happened before the Big Bang." And I implied as much, myself. I don't know if the universe is cyclical or temporally finite. It seems the consensus, though, that the universe is spatially finite, but unbounded.

You said, "'It just happened.' This is, quite simply, not true." Great! Enlighten me. You are so certain. You have faith in this. On what do you base this "faith" or "certainty." How did the universe "happen?" If you are so certain that it didn't "just happen," explain your certainty.

You said, "you are either inexperienced in dealing with atheists or you are being willfully dishonest." I have had a little experience with atheists over my 60+ years, so I guess I must be dishonest, right? If jacking with definitions to squeeze out a laugh and a thoughtful discussion is "dishonest," then I would have to plead "guilty," but I don't think this, so I won't. Understand?

Now, on the subject of "doubt" and "skepticism," I was not messing with definitions. I really do believe what I wrote. How is it utterly untrue that "doubt is not neutral." Let me explain my point-of-view.

When someone doubts something, that person is expressing a feeling that something is "not true." This is "negative" against the veracity of something. When someone says that that something is "true," then they are "positive" toward the veracity of that something. Neither stance is neutral. Utterly untrue? Wow! Let me continue…

One definition of skepticism says, "an attitude of doubt or a disposition to incredulity either in general or toward a particular object." Incredulous is defined as, "unwilling to admit or accept what is offered as true." Another definition is, "disbelieving." In other words, one is negative against accepting something as true. Doubt is defined as, "to be uncertain about; consider questionable or unlikely; hesitate to believe." It is also defined as, "to distrust." Two of these definitions are neutral ("hesitate to believe" and "to be uncertain about") while two are decidedly negative ("consider unlikely" and "distrust").

On a scale of positives and negatives, "distrust" would be toward the negative end. "Trust" would be toward the positive end. Neither one are neutral on the subject of trust. "Doubt" is negative on confidence, "belief" is positive on the subject of confidence.

Need I say more?

But I will say more. Continued in the next…


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Continued from the previous…

You say, "Scientists can only follow the evidence." Absolutely! One hundred percent correct, but they don't need a bias (doubt) to accomplish that. What scientists were really after with skepticism was another quality which is decidedly neutral—restraint or humility. This is the stance that "I don't know." But of course, the scientist is not "agnostic" about their subject (they do not consider it unknowable, otherwise they'd be out of business). But why start with a bias (the doubt found in skepticism)?

If you were to tell me that you have Nessie in your bathtub, I could be skeptical, or I could merely refrain from judging until I had seen your "Nessie." There is a big difference there. Which is the more neutral stance? Why "restraint," of course!

With the broad, sloppy usage of "skepticism" we find in our world, I could tell you that you are stupid for believing that you have Nessie in your bathtub. That's the self-indulgent ridicule you find too often in the realm of science. Heck, other scientists were giving it to NASA scientists recently for the peer-reviewed article on a microbe which thrives in an arsenic-laced environment. Some scientists can be very childish this way. That's not science.

If we're talking about "the" Nessie of Loch Ness fame, then that must be some BIG bathtub, or else Nessie shrank! Or you're talking about Nessie, Jr. But when I see your Nessie, I find out that it is your new pet turtle, and I feel stupid for calling you "stupid" about something I had prejudged. See? Prejudged? That's a bias! That's where skepticism does not quite hit the mark on following the precepts of "Scientific Method" on objectivity and a lack of bias.

No, it doesn't come as a surprise that scientists are skeptical of other scientists' work. I've been around the block a few times, and I've seen this. But there is a big difference between the bias of ego and skepticism, and the neutrality of humility and restraint. Being critical of another's work does not necessarily entail doubt (skepticism). A scientist can do this just as easily with restraint. With humility, there is the tendency to be more cordial and to ask questions, rather than to assume that one knows better and to condemn the "obvious klutz of a scientist who should have known better." See the difference? One is constructive and the other approach is at least partially destructive. Scientists developing a thick skin might very well be a good thing, but that is outside the purpose of science. When you might lose funding for believing you have an artifact which pre-dates Clovis, that's just stupid "pseudo-science" at work. That's self-indulgent ridicule pretending to be science. Got it? I hope so.

When scientists fear doing their jobs because someone with a big ego says "Clovis" is law, then you're not talking science; you're talking witch hunts and voodoo logic. Scientists can't find proof of pre-Clovis if they don't look, and many scientists were afraid to dig below the Clovis horizon for fear of jeopardizing their careers. Got it?

You said, "However science is trying to discover what we don't know rather than making shit up the way religion does." And do you realize that by saying this the way you did, that you are making shit up? Let me explain. Your statement implies that "all" religions make up all of their "shit." Your use of the word "shit" has its own implications, too. You are judging without the facts. How do you "know" with a 100% certainty that all of any religion is simply and only "made up?" You don't, unless you are an omniscient, omnipresent superior being, but you don't believe in such things. How do you know that all of the writings of any religion are "shit?" Again, you don't. What happened to your own skepticism? And pay attention here, this last question is important, but you missed the meaning of it the first time around. If you were truly skeptical of all unproven claims, then you would be skeptical of your own claims, as well. But you don't seem to be. Is it arrogance which blinds you to that fact? And I'm not condemning you with this last question. I've also had plenty of my own arrogance, in the past. Some of it still crops up from time to time. But arrogance is arrogance, and it blinds those who hold it too tightly.

Christ consciousness is said to be omniscient and omnipresent. Any true Christian has this as their goal. This means that anyone who has gained full Enlightenment, including "everlasting life," has the ability to be everywhere at once. Look behind a tree, you will find me, look under a rock, and I will be there staring back at you. How is such a thing possible? If we are individually each one of us spiritual, immortal children of God, then anything is possible. I have seen only a small portion of that power in more than a dozen miracles.

You said, "Science also has a peer review process so that it can self-check itself, this is one of the reasons science is so much more reliable than any other method of discovery." Bravo! I agree with you almost completely. For everything to do with physical reality, science is king. No doubt about it. Science, if it wanted to, could help in the spiritual realm, too. But many scientists are too egotistical and arrogant to care to look in this area. They've already pre-judged it. "We caught a paranormalist cheating with magician's tricks, so all paranormalists are cheaters." Does this sound logical? It isn't, but there are some atheists (and non-atheists, too) who use this kind of illogic. AKA Winston implied this with their Uri Geller example. Don't agree that this is illogical? Then let us substitute "scientist" for "paranormalist." There have been many documented cases of scientists cheating, but that doesn't make all scientists cheaters. Does it?

You said about my symbolic expression for creation, "This is entirely meaningless gobbledygook." Really? If you had never seen calculus and read an equation on celestial mechanics, you might think it was gobbledygook, too. This only proves your lack of understanding of differential equations. Paradoxically, my expression adds dimensionality to the term "n," even though the exponent used is "-1." Creational mechanics give something which is originally only an idea—an instantaneity—the added dimensionality of space-time. The symbolism is imperfect, but it is amazingly telling concerning those mechanics. You may not understand simply because you haven't performed any miracles in this lifetime. This added dimensionality is more like the action of integration in calculus. I still haven't figured out how to include this aspect in my expression. It took me 15-20 years to arrive at this expression. I don't know how long it'll be to the next improvement.

Meaningless? Try explaining a television to a jungle primitive. That's how I feel sometimes trying to explain creational mechanics to the spiritually shallow and mathematically inept. Is it arrogance to assume that there is no meaning in something that has profound meaning just because one does not understand? Wouldn't it be more in keeping with the spirit of science to ask questions about it, rather than condemning it?

You have judged the expression, (0/n)^-1, to have no meaning. You have stated a hypothesis, but have not backed it up with facts. You are skeptical of the expression, but failed to be skeptical of your own judgment. In this, you have shown the bias of skepticism. I have presented something here which describes the power over the universe. In this sense, it is bigger than Einstein's famous expression of equivalence between energy and matter. Careful before you judge. And use restraint, rather than skepticism.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Hello 77:

I will begin with: "My goodness, your responses could be "hubs." :):

"Atheism" is but a concept based upon the existence of THAT which only exists in "opinion." i.e.

"a·the·ist (th-st)

n.

One who disbelieves or denies the existence of God or gods."

God/s?

The definition is based upon a subject, metaphysical in nature. i.e.

"god (gd)

n.

1. God

a. A being conceived as the perfect, omnipotent, omniscient originator and ruler of the universe, the principal object of faith and worship in monotheistic religions.

b. The force, effect, or a manifestation or aspect of this being.

2. A being of supernatural powers or attributes, believed in and worshiped by a people, especially a male deity thought to control some part of nature or reality.

3. An image of a supernatural being; an idol."

The definition is based soley upon "conjecture" which offers the "THOUGHTFUL," opportunity to create as many "opinions of what this "god thing" is, as there are those who care to think about it.

If this "god thing" can only exist as an opined "concept," then, logically, one cannot be one who denys the existence of "god!" One can only be one who denies the "CONCEPT" of the "opinion" of what this god thing is.

The "corrupted" tome: the bible, does not offer a "factual" definition of the biblical god. "It" just refers to it as it is defined above in the form of conjecture/opinion.

There are, literally, no atheists. There are only those who claim to be, due to a cursory/shallow study of why they make that claim.

77, I didn't say there was no creator! Of course there was a creator! At this moment in our intellectual evolution, we are but an infant species of life which is wallowing in abject ignrorance and can only attribute our existence to the creator: "serendipity."

We are an "incipient" species, gifted by time and evolution with an anomaly: "consciousness."

Curiosity is a characteristic of human nature that leads us to seek and discover. We learn by attempt and mistake.

One days beliefs are dashed the next and replaced with new beliefs due to gaining greater knowledge and understanding.

"Existence" is rife with enigma!

The "well informed thinker," understands that we "KNOW" nothing YET, to believe in.

The subjective "Theory-of-everythng" (TOE) makes that obvious.

Miracles? There are many wonderous and inexplicable events happening in our lives, on this planet and in the cosmos that we as an infant species may never understand before our demise.

If we continue on to become a "successful" species, with a few hundred millions of years of evolution to "bank" on, the things we consider to be "miraculous" will be thought of, tomorrow, as commonplace and I'm sure that those of that time who study ancient history will chuckle under their breath at the simple mindedness of those who existed in the 21st century.

But will marvel at their determined attempts to understand and create methods which would lead them to survivng and becoming the "enlightened" man of tomorrow.

WE KNOW NOTHING YET TO BELIEVE IN!

Qwark


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 5 years ago from back in the lab again

"you leave the door open to "nothing at all" preceding the Big Bang as one possibility. Did you mean to do this?"

Of course. It is certainly possible for nothing to have preceded the Big Bang. Maybe it isn't probable but it is certainly possible just as the existence of a God is possible. The point is we just don't know what came before the Big Bang.

"I figured that with sufficient study and logic, one could devise a way to know just about anything."

Right now the scientific method is the best method for discovery we have but it isn't perfect. It may be that one day we will have answers to all the big questions but right now many of them remain unanswered.

"They may say they are agnostic, when really they are acting as if they "know" there is no god and anyone who believes in such is stupid."

I think it depends on which God(s) we're talking about. For instance if you told me you believed in Zeus I would be inclined to make fun of you. Many agnostic-atheists have stronger positions on specific Gods. Another example is my attitude toward the Biblical God Yahweh, in regards to most God(s) I am agnostic but in regards to Yahweh I consider myself much closer to a gnostic-atheist. So there are varying degrees of certainty even amongst agnostic-atheists but they will likely never claim absolute certainty or knowledge on the subject. However in the same way I would never claim absolutely certainty that fairies DO NOT exist - they are VERY unlikely but not entirely impossible.

"By the nature of your dismissal, you are betraying a prejudice (bias) which is in itself an "argument to ignorance" "

No, because the reason I said this is you using God to fill the gap before the Big Bang. We have a gap in our knowledge in that we don't quite know why and how the Big Bang happened and what happened before it. Filling that gap with a God is a God of the Gaps fallacy. In fact this specific fallacy reminds me very much of the idea of the Prime Mover, the uncaused cause, which many believers claim is their particular deity. The Pope just a few days ago claimed that God had started the Big Bang. This is a God of the gaps, inserted into a hole in our knowledge rather than just admitting WE DON'T KNOW.

Your example of planetary scientists is entirely invalid as science must rely on objective observation and evidence and does not rely on faith the way religion does. It is also NOT an extraordinary claim. As you may know extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, the claim that some distant star has planets orbiting it is hardly extraordinary. The claim that God created the Universe or even that a God exists at all is extraordinary (as it is a supernatural claim).

"Enlighten me. You are so certain. You have faith in this. On what do you base this "faith" or "certainty." "

You were asserting that atheists believe "it just happened" THAT is what is not true. I'm not a scientist so I don't know the up to date details on how they think the Universe came into existence. Stephen Hawkin, in his book, did claim that the Universe came into existence as the inevitable result of pre-existing conditions within it (whatever that means). Either way I think the scientific explanation will be far more robust than "IT JUST HAPPENED".

"Understand?"

Do you know how many theists I see, on an almost daily basis, who mess with the definitions of atheist and agnostic? Some do it because they were genuinely misled and told the wrong definitions others do it just to piss people off. So when I see someone get the definitions painfully wrong my first inclination is NOT that they are joking especially when they strawman the atheist position to further say we believe in NOTHING. You may have been joking but theists actually make those claims against us all the time. It is extremely hard to read tongue-in-cheek humor in text or to see sarcasm or that you weren't serious. I suppose this falls under POE's Law, I was unable to distinguish that you were trying to be funny.

"When someone doubts something, that person is expressing a feeling that something is "not true." "

But this isn't the case. Doubt can be that way but it can also be a feeling that something MIGHT not be true. Admitting the possibility that you might be wrong is doubt. I can say that I doubt Bigfoot exists but does that immediately mean that I feel Bigfoot isn't real? You're saying that doubt is a polar opposite when in actuality it is a middle-ground where you can go either way.

""Doubt" is negative on confidence, "belief" is positive on the subject of confidence."

The keyword here being CONFIDENCE. The idea of doubt is that you are not confident that a certain something is true, it is not an assumption that that thing is false. My point then is that doubt is not disbelief, it is not the polar opposite of belief.


Titen-Sxull profile image

Titen-Sxull 5 years ago from back in the lab again

"That's where skepticism does not quite hit the mark on following the precepts of "Scientific Method" on objectivity and a lack of bias."

That's where the scientists do no hit the mark, but not skepticism itself. I cannot fault scientists for having prejudged certain claims as they have the expertise in their field. For instance if I come to an astronomer and tell him the third star in Orion's Belt is actually a pulsar I don't think he's being arrogant when he laughs at me. If I come to a marine biologist and tell him Nessie is my tub I don't think he is wrong to disbelieve my claim as that would be the best assumption to be made from the current information he has and, as my claim is an extraordinary one, until I present some evidence of it he is justified in disbelieving. Remember that one can disbelieve and still leave open the possibility of being wrong.

"How do you "know" with a 100% certainty that all of any religion is simply and only "made up?" "

Did I ever claim 100% certainty on any subject? Complete and absolute certainty are worthless. I don't know that all religions are made up. I think its fairly obvious to anyone who really looks at religious claims that the many of them are fabrications, they're just not true. Zeus doesn't cause lightning, we've found a cause for that, demons don't cause disease, we found a real cause for that, etc. Religion used to, quite literally, make shit up in regards to what they didn't understand about the world. This is what I was referring to. In science you can't just make shit up, you have to support your conclusions with evidence and experimentation.

Let's look at it again:

"However science is trying to discover what we don't know rather than making shit up the way religion does."

Read it this way:

"Religion makes shit up to explain what we don't know (Zeus - Lightning) but science actually tries to discover what we don't know."

"There have been many documented cases of scientists cheating, but that doesn't make all scientists cheaters. Does it?"

I agree. I would not pre-judge all paranormal phenomenon based on the fact that every single paranormal claim (to my knowledge) ever tested scientifically has failed. But I think you can see why people would be dismissive of paranormal claims, because those claims are EXTRAORDINARY and thus come under a higher standard of scrutiny.

"That's how I feel sometimes trying to explain creational mechanics to the spiritually shallow and mathematically inept."

I disagree with this, not the mathematically inept part as I am, indeed, mathematically inept, but the spiritually shallow aspect. I'm not sure what you mean there given that no shred of credible evidence has ever supported the existence of spirits.

"In this sense, it is bigger than Einstein's famous expression of equivalence between energy and matter"

I'm being called arrogant by a guy who thinks he's invented an equation bigger than Einstein's. Yeah...

I do apologize for passing judgment on your equation as I am not a mathematician. Given that the rest of your Hub prior to your equation didn't have much substance I made an assumption that your equation too had no substance. As I do not understand, fully, your equation I will reserve judgment of it. However I disagree with the rest of your post and your analysis of doubt and skepticism. Doubt and skepticism can be biased to either belief or non-belief. For instance some believe the moon landing was a hoax, others accept that it happened, there are those in the middle who doubt that it WAS a hoax and those that doubt that it WASN'T, you can in fact be right smack in the middle and be entirely unsure. So doubt can lean, it is not always tied to the negative.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

(@AKA Winston: Calling me a liar, huh?)

Lone77Star,

Not me - Thomas Paine, perhaps, but not even then in my opinion.

The point to be made (and I think Paine was making this same point) is that human fraility is myriad, in that we can purpusefully mistate (or lie), but we can also misobserve, misunderstand an observance, misinterpret the observeance, mis-see what really happened, see what we want to see at times, and on and on and on.

In all of recorded history, though, there has yet to be a single case where the natural law of gravity failed to operate.

So, when you are applying the standards of human claims of miracles to the infallibility of natural law, the odds are overwhelming that the flaw lies with the human, not nature.


fatfist profile image

fatfist 5 years ago

Hi lone77star,

I don’t quite understand what you mean by “believing in nothing”. What does belief (one’s personal opinion) have to do with reality anyway?

What does belief in God have to do whether there is a God or not? Only theists, atheists, and agnostics claim to respectively believe, disbelieve, or believe not to know, that God exists.

But what does this opinionated stance have to do with reality?

A hypothesized being we call God, exists or not, irrespective of what any human fool believes or doesn’t believe. I mean, God does not materialize when you believe in Him. Similarly, God does not cease to exist when you lose faith in Him.

Anyway, if by the term God you mean “the creator of space and matter”, then God is your hypothesized object. And you are positing the positive CLAIM that space and matter were not around at some instant in the past....but were surreptitiously created at some instant. This is your theory.

Question: Can you rationally explain IF creation is even a remote possibility?

I have several hubs explaining why creation is impossible. Not a single human in history has been able to explain whether creation is even a possibility. They merely assert it on belief. Can you rationally explain? If so, feel free to post your explanation in any of my hubs.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

("We caught a paranormalist cheating with magician's tricks, so all paranormalists are cheaters." Does this sound logical? It isn't, but there are some atheists (and non-atheists, too) who use this kind of illogic. AKA Winston implied this with their Uri Geller example. Don't agree that this is illogical? Then let us substitute "scientist" for "paranormalist." There have been many documented cases of scientists cheating, but that doesn't make all scientists cheaters. Does it?)

lone77star,

You are smart and you are tricky. I am having difficulty deciding into which camp you fit, though, the William Craig Lane camp of smart but dumb concerning faith or the George Carlin camp of smart and able to ridicule faith with faith itself.

You are certainly aware that your example above is a case of inductive reasoning, and thus case #1 of one paranormal sharlatan providing evidence of all being sharlatans is logical and a much stronger argument than one bad scientist apple spoiling the bunch - and the reason the argument is stronger is due to the nature of the types verifications each category requires.

If we can show the trick Uri Geller used to bend spoons it is quite likely the next guy who bends spoons is using the same trick, not his mental prowess.

If we find a scientist who has lied about his statistics, we still have mountains of evidence of scientists who do not lie about statistics.

In case one, it is logical to assume that a magic trick is the product of magic or an illusion, not paranormal wizardry.

Likewise, in case two it is logical to assume that the lying scientist is the one bad apple in the barrel and the majority of scientists do not lie.

Of course, this is the problem with inductive reasoning - it is comparative by its nature and can only discuss potentials or probabilities.

But to compare the two statements as equally illogical is...well....tricky.

Reality is that if 1,000,000 times an apples is dropped from the tower of Pisa and 999,999,999 times it falls to the ground but the last time some guy named Uri dropped it and it didn't fall, it would be not only illogical but naive and borderline stupid to think a miracle had occured rather than an illusion.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Qwark (from 33 hours ago). My goodness! Thank you for elaborating on why atheists are not who they say they are. I have not yet grokked what you've written, but it's starting to sink in.

Can you elaborate on your flagship statement, "WE KNOW NOTHING YET TO BELIEVE IN!"

You treat humanity as if it were only a species (Homo sapiens). Well, of course, that's the obvious part. But if you had experienced remote viewing (being outside of your body as a spiritual being), you'd know that the body isn't everything by a long shot.

If you read my Anatomy of a Miracle, you'd understand my take on "ordinary" and "extraordinary" miracles. Briefly, though, "ordinary" miracles are those derived from continuity-based reality. You know what I mean? Space is continuous (no gaps). So is time. So are inertia and momentum. Any "miracle" based on these physical reality constructs is an "ordinary" miracle. The birth of a baby, the beauty of a flower, Man landing on the Moon, laser communications, and desktop computers.

Extraordinary miracles are those which confound, bend or break physical law. Such is what happened on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, in 1977. I give all the juicy details in another hub. I agree with your analysis of miracles, for the most part, but you seem to be talking about the "ordinary" variety, especially if you imply that understanding will come through science. Science is perfect for every "ordinary" miracle of physical reality.

Extraordinary miracles are like Jesus and Peter walking on water, the healing of the man born blind, Moses parting the sea, and thick, rush hour traffic parting on Wilshire Boulevard for a distance of two miles and remaining parted for four minutes. Some have tried to explain away such miracles--Jesus walked on ice. With the waves tossing from a storm? Get real! If Jesus walked on water, it wasn't from balancing on a slippery, ice surfboard. And what, did he bring along a second ice surfboard just in case one of his disciples needed one? If the incident happened at all, it was based on the creation of the immortal child of God within, not on any physical effect or mechanical contrivance.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

77:

Ya had me interested and about to sit down to generate a serious and response to your reply...until I got to this paragraph:

"Extraordinary miracles are like Jesus and Peter walking on water, the healing of the man born blind, Moses parting the sea, and thick, rush hour traffic parting on Wilshire Boulevard for a distance of two miles and remaining parted for four minutes. Some have tried to explain away such miracles--Jesus walked on ice. With the waves tossing from a storm? Get real! If Jesus walked on water, it wasn't from balancing on a slippery, ice surfboard. And what, did he bring along a second ice surfboard just in case one of his disciples needed one? If the incident happened at all, it was based on the creation of the immortal child of God within, not on any physical effect or mechanical contrivance."

I was hoping for an interesting and erudite response.

Instead, to my astonishment and disappointment, I am reading trite religious "drivel" referring to subject matter which has its foundation based upon nothing but conjecture and opinion and is presumed, by you, to be "miraculous!"

I cursorily, perused your "hub" and was shaking my head in disbelief at the level of "religious" pre-indoctrination that was necessary, in your formative years, for you to believe in what you have determined to be "miracles."

No insult intended 77, but I view you now as just another simple, easily led "follower."

I'll end my response here and wish you a wonderful life and a very happy new year.

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 1 of 3]

@Titen-Sxull (from 2 days ago, your Part 1), I want to thank you for this delightful debate. I see that we agree on quite a number of things. And some things we don't agree on. That makes for a lively discussion, so long as neither one of us remains too attached to our ideas and can enjoy exploring things logically and with reason. I admit I'm learning some things from your input. Clearly, I see some bias on both sides, but I'm hoping most, if not all, of it dissipates with further discussion. Selfishly, I want all of it to dissipate on my end. I'm on a mission to learn more, so I can't hold onto any one idea too tightly. Out of kindness, I wish that for you, too, if you are so inclined. And you seem to be that kind of brave individual.

Even scientists have their beliefs. One will believe in one hypothesis and will spend a lifetime pursuing data to prove it. Some (hopefully most) will dump their pursuit if they find data to the contrary. Some, however, will fudge the data to keep from losing precious tenure and/or funding. I agree that scientific method is the best method for discovery in the physical realm, but have you ever looked up the definition? It talks about remaining objective and eschewing bias. The broad range that is "skepticism" does not do this—not in the real world. Even at its most benign, there is a hint of bias. More on that in a moment.

"God of the gap." Wow, that's really interesting. So, if a scientist comes up with a hypothesis to explain an anomalous spur of the Milky Way galaxy, his would be a "spur of the gap?" I hope you see how pretentious and biased that is.

So Hawking comes up with a thoughtful and interesting possible precursor to the Big Bang. That's interesting, and that may even prove to be true. But the action-reaction mechanism anyone might propose still fails as an "end-cause" of it all. One could just as easily ask, "what caused this new source?" What was behind that? And on and on and on, ad infinitum. That's a dog chasing its tail. It never can quite catch up. There never is a satisfactory explanation that I can see or imagine, and my imagination is not too shabby. Any physical, inert force, field, object, etc. remains an unsatisfactory source to all that we behold. There is always the question, what put "that" in place?

Looking at it from strictly a logical standpoint, anything that is made up of space-time is a product of something else. Let's call it "X." And let us say that "X" results in space-time. This would imply that "X" does not inherently possess any space or time. And, of course, energy and matter cannot exist without space-time, and might be products or higher dimensionality than space or time. Just as time is a higher dimension than space—n^4 rather than n^3—energy might be the integration of time into an even higher dimension—n^5? If we are looking for an end-cause which cannot be accused of being the effect of some other cause, what would that end-cause look like? So far, we have that it is timeless and spaceless. It has no energy or mass and thus may not adhere to the laws of action-reaction. Visibility requires space, time and electromagnetic energy. Clearly "X" is invisible.

If you've ever done any programming or developed any algorithms, you will understand the simplicity of its basis in continuity. The results of computations rely entirely on the inputs and the "black box" which operates on them. None of those lines of code can claim to be an end-cause in the realm of software. The virtual reality possible with such code is nothing short of startling. In the universe of the software, the programmer is god. The programmer herself is likely Homo sapiens, possibly even cute (all cute chicks are not necessarily dumb). But that body of hers is not part of the software universe. Rocks colliding in the real world will not cause a computer to be built and will not result in the software running on it. It takes conscious thought and creativity to result in something so ordered—so creative. Of course, chemistry is a different matter. A meteor carrying complex chemicals on it, colliding with Earth, will yield chemicals with greater complexity. That is so cool. This may even have resulted in life. I'm not talking about this. I'm talking about the impossibility of colliding rocks directly resulting in a computer with software running on it.

So, until I see a better hypothesis come along, my vote is on our "X" being conscious and intending space-time—building the foundation of our physical realm. I can buy a discontinuous consciousness giving birth to all, but not a continuity-bound artifact doing the same. Why do I lean in this direction? Well, I suppose empirical evidence of my own spirituality—my own "nothingness." Empirical evidence of me creating miracles. Ask more than two thousand others who were on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, that day when rush hour traffic opened up like Moses parting the sea. Why sound so biblical? I know it pisses off those who want to ridicule believers. It certainly sent @Qwark into escape velocity. (Sorry @Qwark! Don't leave the party yet, it's just getting interesting.)

Call "X" the "tooth fairy," call it "axolotyl" (Central American mud puppy), call it whatever. The word "God" has so many "wrong" definitions because there are so many who are attached to shallow beliefs. They don't understand the big picture. I understand their picture, and I have moved on far beyond their worldview. I also understand science. Want to talk physics, space science, archaeology, geology, or chemistry? Yum!

continued in Part 2...


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 2 of 3]

Why would you "make fun of" anyone? If someone believes in Zeus, a little interest might be in order. Why is it such a big deal to you to judge others for believing in anything? You don't know where they are on the road to enlightenment. They might be behind you, or they might be far ahead of you. Why judge? Why not ask about their belief in Zeus? And if you are not interested in asking, then why be interested in diss'ing them or their belief. That shows a clearly negative attitude, besides being simply rude and perhaps even arrogant. I try not to judge, but find it almost impossible not to judge those who judge. Sound like a paradox? I'm only prejudiced against those who hold a prejudice—so deep down, there is a bit of self-loathing, I suppose. I hope I grow out of it.

You might find out by asking, that your "stupid" friend has become best buddies with an alien who has crashed their spaceship, and that the alien's name is "Zehyouse." What you heard was "Zeus," and you automatically thought, "loony tunes!" Or say they really are loony, so what! Can't you show a little compassion. Behind those dull eyes of theirs might lie the intellect of an Einstein or the heart of a Picasso longing to break free. Or perhaps the person is merely suffering the karma from a past life full of arrogance and belittling others. The old wise saying goes, don't judge or you will be judged. Call someone else stupid, and next lifetime, guess what? You find yourself in a stupid body where the brain synapses don't fire properly. And you were such a giant of an intellect only a few decades earlier. Pity.

My example of planetary scientists "entirely invalid?" Wow, what a generalization! No validity whatsoever? Don't scientists have confidence in their own intellects? Don't scientists have confidence in scientific method, peer review, and the published accumulation of prior knowledge? Just because I used the word "faith," suddenly all this logic becomes supernatural? If faith means confidence—and the definition I use means this—then we have no disagreement except on your claim that my example is "entirely invalid."

You said of Hawking that he felt, "the Universe came into existence as the inevitable result of pre-existing conditions within it." That's clearly gobbledygook and perhaps you misquoted it. Looking at the phrase under the lens of logic, you have something that exists before it exists! What? That doesn't make sense. A piece of the universe yields the universe? I agree—"whatever that means." Listening to and reading Hawking stretches the mind. That's pretty cool stuff. Attempting to understand his great intellect is a brain boost all by itself. But a scientific explanation for an end-cause does not seem likely. Science studies the realm of continuity. If our "X" is not part of space-time, but the source of that construct, then it is, it seems, discontinuous in nature—and alien to the tools of science.

All of this may sound purely academic and theoretical, but with my experience with miracles and out-of-body excursions, I can only deduce that such things are possible only because of the interfacing of the discontinuous with the continuous. They are only possible because the "X" is superior to and cause of the effect—physical reality. Try as I may, I cannot figure out a physical (science) solution to this equation. Am I not smart enough? Heck, that's possible. It could be that I don't yet have sufficient imagination. But then, I look at a miracle on Wilshire Boulevard, disbelieved by so many, and ridiculed ad nauseum, and think—boy, if I could figure out how to do that, I must not be "entirely invalid."

@Titen-Sxull, you have argued quite well about your views on "doubt." If you re-read my argument, you will see that two of the definitions of "doubt" I used were neutral. Fair enough. We are in partial agreement. But your argument ignores the other two definitions of doubt. And this is where my point is made. This is where science dwells in muddy waters, because scientists do not always think through clearly their use of doubt. They don't live in the "ivory tower" you portray for them. Too much ego gets in the way. And fess up, we both still have egos, right? I know I do, despite trying to assassinate mine. Pesky little bugger persists.

The key to my argument is how "doubt" is used in defining skepticism and how it is used in the real world. I think we can both agree that "I don't know" is a completely neutral stance. But perhaps like the word "God" is an imperfect word for our "X," "doubt" is an imperfect word for the decidedly more neutral "restraint." Your definitions and arguments show a keen respect for what is good and right about science. Bravo! I have no arguments with that. But how is skepticism used in the real world? Even you had the gall to condemn your friend for saying he had "Nessie" in his bathtub, or to condemn another associate for believing in Zeus. In the realm of common human interaction, such things are just plain rude, but from a logical standpoint, you're overstepping your bounds by assuming too much. You're assuming that the person is beneath your lofty intellect—so laughter and ridicule are in order? If you assume such things, you miss out on other possibilities. Like asking questions to find out that your friend merely got a new turtle and called it Nessie. Or that your associate really is mentally disturbed and needs your compassion. Don't fall for the easy ego trip—I'm right and you're wrong. You won't learn nearly as much.

When I studied electronic engineering back in the mid-70's, I read about something called a "tank circuit." I had also been an avid astronomer for twenty years, so I knew something about emission and absorption spectra. The tank circuit is merely a tuning circuit for radio broadcasts. Suddenly, I realized that I was surrounded by trillions of tank circuits. One atheist on a different website thought he was being smart in disagreeing with me. Because I believed in God, I must be wrong in anything dealing with science, so he said that atoms are not tank circuits, because they can't be varied like a tank circuit. How terribly unintelligent of him. He was trying to sound intelligent, but his approach was more one of arrogance, not only trying to show me wrong, but show me to be absolutely and completely wrong. Electrons do not exist at permanently fixed energy levels. Did he think of this? Apparently not. If you've ever seen a Balmer series, you know what I mean. There are many different possible energy levels into which a hydrogen atom can tune in.

The point of my last paragraph is that there is opportunity all around us—opportunity to learn—opportunity for wisdom in the simple mutterings of the mentally challenged. If you judge in advance, you miss those opportunities.

continued in Part 3…


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 3 of 3]

My first wife tended to see only problems. She cried a lot. She would look in her environment and miss the obvious solutions only inches away from the source of her despair.

When a scientist judges (condemns) an idea without due diligence (investigation), they are doing a disservice to science and humanity. Have you ever heard of "Clovis first?" North American anthropology suffered under that poison yoke for decades. Scientists were afraid to dig below the Clovis horizon for fear it would jeopardize their careers or their funding. This is the real-world use of "doubt" I am condemning. How can a scientist ever find evidence for pre-Clovis, if they never look? They were too afraid to look. It took a few cocky rogues to break through that unscientific nonsense. For decades, those in power in North American anthropology ridiculed the possibility that anything came before Clovis. That's real-world "skepticism" at its worst. Now do you understand?

I applaud your logic, @Titen-Sxull. You've got a good head on your shoulders, and though you occasionally jump to unfounded conclusions and speak unfounded generalities (like my poor understanding of science), your heart is largely in the right place, though perhaps a little naïve. Not saying that to be unkind. Heck, I've been there, too. In some respects, I may still be a bit naïve. But your willingness to admit mistakes is so important to growing beyond that. That's the true heart of a scientist. You've already shown me that. Again, bravo!

Scientists are afraid to look sometimes because they've invested their lives in their careers and they could lose their entire investment if they say the wrong thing. There is a little island in the Bahamas which has several possible archaeological sites surrounding it. Amateurs have taken photos which, though not entirely convincing, are at least promising as possible man-made sites, now under water. Professional archaeologists won't go there. Why? Because one scientist lied and because some amateurs associated the island with "Atlantis." As far as scandals go, this is a bit more insidious than Piltdown man. But the evil is the same—ego-led greed and pride. I think the scientist started out as a bachelor in biology, but worked for the USGS. After his second article, which re-wrote the data and its conclusions, he became a celebrity and an adopted son of geologists. After that, he wrote sufficient number of geological articles, over a few decades, to earn an honorary PhD in geology. How shameful. All based on falsified data. And now, when anyone points to Bimini Island, geologists and archaeologists will shake their heads in ridicule, pointing to "Doctor" Shinn's later articles, "proving" the beach rock was "entirely" natural. False, false, false, false, false! A betrayal of trust, all to garner ego's reward—fame, acclaim, and a doctorate.

Was Atlantis a real place? I don't rightly know. Talk about it to "real" scientists and you're talking "blasphemy." Try it some time. Watch the glazed eyes and the ridicule.

And yet, I've found in my own research of the literature, three items of proof that an Atlantis-like event occurred right when Plato said the fabled island supposedly sank. Earth-shaking? Perhaps. But will scientists look? Not on their careers, they won't. Not until someone proves Atlantis to be real. But gotcha! No one is looking, so proof may never be found. Scientists had similar attitudes about Troy, but it took an amateur to break that log jam. And until American scientist, Jeanne Kimball-Davis, and Russian scientist, Leonid Yablonsky, found women warriors buried with their weapons and armor, while the men were buried separately with the children, many scientists had scoffed at the possibility that the Amazon myth had any basis in fact. That's real-world skepticism. That's real-world "doubt." That's idée fix and real-world blindness.

Where does this abnormality come from? Simple answer: ego. You got it, I got it and most of us humans got one. Most, but not necessarily all. I've met some Buddhist monks who seemed to be close to offloading that dead weight. I've also seen some so-called "christians" who cling to theirs as if it were a shield and armor. How thoroughly un-Christian! When you've been to where I've been, then such things become pretty tangible. You can feel ego like a shroud. I see ego in my one-year-old nephew, Harvey, when he can't get his way and shrieks and cries as if he had been stung by a bee. One look from me, and it all stops dead in its tracks. Shrieks turn to silence, and he looks back at me with that "oops" look on his face. "I've been found out."

Some scientists are being just as childish. Thankfully, most are not, or we would not make much progress at all, despite the lofty ideals of "scientific method."

[@Titen-Sxull, this is in reply to your Part 1, from 2 days ago. Your Part 2 I will answer later. Gotta go to work. Caio!]


AKA Winston 5 years ago

lone77star,

Have you ever asked yourself why it is that miracles never leave behind evidence of accomplishment? From the healings in the New Testament to the Traffic Sea Parting on Wilshire Blvd, all we have are claims of accomplishment, never ojbective data that establishes the claim or that can be scientifically studied. Curious, isn't it?

I would ask you to challenge your own belief systems in this regard - either magical events can really occur or your Wilshire Blvd experience was a delution brought about by high emotional stress and belief in the delusion's possibility. But as Scrooge suggested in A Christmas Carol, a bit of undigested meat is a more likely cause of magic than a reality change.

Unlike the fictional accounts, Scrooge was right. We know that miracle angels do not appear to tell stories of a lost Iraelite tribe who lived in America - we know because there is no evidence of these millions of Jews and their cities and wars ever found in America. We also know that after years speaking with an angel, a man did not then mount a horse and fly to heaven and back - we know because evidence shows us that horses cannot fly, and there is nothing above us but sky and then space.

To help you solve this enigma of delusion/reality for yourself, I have this suggestion.

If you are able to perform Wilshire Blvd Traffic Parting Miracles at will, why don't you grab the local Channel 2 news crew to film you at the local VA hospital performing a miracle - help one of the poor guys or gals there who lost a limb regrow that limb.

That's all you need to do. We even know it is not out of the realm of nature, as a salamander can regenerate its own limb without prayer.

If you cannot do this, then I'm afraid your claim of magically parting traffic should be placed in the same category as Scrooge and his bit of undigested meat, right beside Joe Smith's magical visits from Moroni and Mohammed's magical flight to heaven on the back of a horse.

Without evidence, your are simply claiming your particular brand of magic is real.

But here is the eerie part. There a millions of people who sincerely believe the Joseph Smith story is true - they are Mormons.

There are a billion plus people who believe the flying horse story about Mohammed - they are Muslims.

Now, the odd part is that the Mormons can readily see the delusions of the Muslims; the Muslims can readily see the delusions of the Mormons. Neither can see their own delutions.

The mind is indeed a powerful weapon and easily fools and misleeds. But like the Mormons and Muslims above, from inside a delusional bubble it is necessary to rationalize inconsistencies with reality in order to maintain belief - looking from the outside, it is easy to spot delusions.

So, I wonder if you have ever considered this: either your experience on Wilshire Blvd was genuine magic or you experienced a delusion.

To prove to yourself that you are not in a delusional bubble, that you really can accomplish miracles, why not regrow an amputee's limb on camera so virtually everyone worldwide can be witness through the non-delusional magic of t.v. that miracles are a reality?

If you cannot do this, you may want to ask yourself why it is you can part traffic with no other witnesses to record the event but you cannot regrow a limb for the 6 o'clock news - could the reason be that you are deluding yourself about miracles and thus your mind established a very real-looking event to rationalize your belief?


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

77:

Yep I left at 'light speed."

I've chatted with the likes of you, some are friends, who have nothing of credible import to offer but are convinced they do.

Enjoy life. There will be no "miracle" at the end. :)

Qwark


nightwork4 profile image

nightwork4 5 years ago from ontario. canada

you state that to an athiest there is no sourse to the universe. where did you come up with that idea? an athiest as i see it is someone who doesn't believe in god.as an athiest i understand that the universe was somehow created but i disagree that a "god" made it or made us not that there is no sourse to the universe. you later state that a more inteligent point of view is " i don't know" as an agnostic.this doesn't show more inteligence, it shows that the person is perhaps more open minded. this attempt to use mathematical equations that few understand and science as a debate is clever but it's nothing new. i don't believe in god in any form. that's a simple, easy way to put it. we could debate this till the cows come home but your education would be used in defense of statements that would baffle me so i'll just say that believers are the ones who believe in nothing because god is just faith, a myth created by man for man. a belief in nothing if you must.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

You are one deep dude. That's for sure. I appreciate you taking such a bold stand against the forces of darkness. But I am sure you know they are also very powerful. And that they might not ever—no matter what the evidence—agree with you. Still, you've got guts. And I admire you.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 1 of 2]

@Titen-Sxull (replying to your post of 3 days ago, part 2), you argue passionately and sometimes quite well for what is right and good about science. I'm not arguing against science or its accomplishments. I'm arguing against stubbornness and attachment to something (skepticism) which, though it has served science well, is still less perfect than "restraint" or "humility."

First you argue that skepticism is not biased, then you argue that the skepticism of scientists is okay to be biased. You can't have it both ways. And I hope I've made my point that there is real-world bias in skepticism. Why should a scientist laugh (disdain, ridicule) at something that does not match their worldview? The higher path for a scientist would be to "restrain" themselves (and their egos!) from prejudging. They should listen to the facts and pass judgment on the facts. Just because they are so-called experts does not make them omniscient. You make it sound as though, because they are experts, then it is okay to make fun of someone else's "discoveries." That's arrogance, pure and simple. That's thinking you know better. That's an attitude of "I'm better than you." Again, that's arrogance. Try being humble in the situations you hypothesize. If you really can be humble there, then you will see just how arrogant is the stance you portray for your scientists. My scientists would not do that, if I were to hire any in my laboratory. They would remain humble, always. They would value the mutterings of a child, for in those innocent questions or misconceptions might be the next big breakthrough. Humility allows that. Arrogance does not. Do you see the value in this topic? This is earthshaking!

When a scientist can stand on a street corner looking at street lights changing colors and invent the laser, when a scientist can dream of monkeys dancing in a circle and solve the enigma of benzene, we need to realize the value of all things around us. Humility allows this. Arrogance does not. Thinking you are an expert is the first pitfall. That's ego talking. That's pride. That's blindness.

If Einstein had not valued imagination, he would never have discovered Relativity. He valued imagination more than knowledge.

I stated earlier, "How do you 'know' with a 100% certainty that all of any religion is simply and only 'made up?'" And you replied, "Did I ever claim 100% certainty on any subject?" Ahh, but you implied it. You said in your first comment, "However science is trying to discover what we don't know rather than making shit up the way religion does."

It sounds as though you are 100% certain by the way you state such generalities. The phrase "the way religion does" seems to imply "all religion" and "all the time." You state it with such certainty and without equivocation. Science is good, maybe not perfect, but religion is entirely bad because it makes "shit" up. Gotcha! Caught you in the act, @Titen-Sxull. Fess up! Don't let ego stand in the way of our dialog. Don't protect ego by lying about or ignoring what you said previously. I've been wrong and you've been wrong. Lying will only make it worse. Ego wins and we both lose.

You speak so often in absolutes. I know, because I sometimes do that, too, for effect. Do you mean to be so inaccurate in your statements? Are you attempting, instead, to create an effect? Or are you merely oblivious to what you're creating with your inaccuracies? Our dialog is opening up an entirely new area of awareness for me. For that, I thank you my friend, @Titen-Sxull. Very nice. I can only hope my own writing will improve and become more accurate as a result. I wish the same for you. Shining a light of awareness on such inaccuracies (both yours and mine) can only help us improve if we pay attention.

And you do it again by saying, "Religion makes shit up to explain what we don't know (Zeus - Lightning) but science actually tries to discover what we don't know." You make religion out to be the bad guy, here. Religion as a whole is not perfect. Some religions or religious individuals have made "shit" up, but you still do not equivocate your statement.

If you had said that "some religions make some stuff up," then you would have sounded less biased. Your use of the word "shit" is a bias. This scatological term used in this manner refers to something which is worthless. That's a bias. Have you studied all religions? If not, then your statement is the essence of arrogance and ignorance.

You said, "Complete and absolute certainty are worthless." Is this the conclusion of your PhD thesis? Did you do a thorough study of this subject? Or did you just make this "shit" up? @Titen-Sxull, I'm going to rake you over the coals on this one point, but for effect. I'm just letting you know this in advance. Why would I do such a thing? To make a point (that's obvious!), but also because you are dead wrong in this one seemingly innocent statement.

When scientists use the tried and true method of smoothing out their graphs of data gathered during experimentation, they are attempting to see the cause-and-effect relationship between the inputs. They are attempting to derive a formula. But in getting rid of the messiness around the edges, they missed out on an entirely new field of science described as chaos theory. This relatively new science is a very elegant theory for describing why greater noise is sometimes experienced in electronic communication lines, or why biological population values follow paths known as bifurcations.

If a scientist believes that "complete and absolute certainty are worthless," then they will never investigate the possibility of and effects associated with "absolute certainty." What an entirely arrogant bias. An entire field ignored because of this blindness. Let us look at what this means. And let us define our terms.

I propose to define "complete and absolute certainty" as "100% confidence." This is my most important definition of "faith." And no, you won't find this definition in the dictionary. But this is the definition which applies to miracles. If miracles are possible (and I've done a few), then they would need some method not yet understood by science-at-large.

One atheist quipped that the 9-11 terrorists were "100% certain" of their mission. If this meant that the terrorists were certain of the rightness of their mission and of their resulting place in heaven, then I disagree. Their "certainty" was not perfect (100%), but was instead a delusion. That's the critical difference. One ignores reality (delusion), and the other takes all things into consideration (both physical and spiritual) and performs miracles. One hundred percent certainty is "walking on water" or "healing a crippled body" or "gaining sight in eyes which had never known such."

[continued in Part 2…]


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 2 of 2]

@Titen-Sxull, is the power of the universe (creation) worthless? If you feel this, then the products of creation (everything in your life—your body, your thoughts, your education, your mind) are worthless. I don't think this. "Complete and absolute certainty" are impossible with "doubt." Creating miracles are impossible with doubt. Just ask Peter, the fisherman, after he stepped out of his boat to walk on the storm-tossed waters of Galilee. Doubt found him sinking after his first few steps. Did that really happen? I don't rightly know. I wasn't there. But it's a beautiful story. It is an inspiring story. I choose to believe that it actually happened. The only evidence for this event are the words in the Bible. And yet the Bible is not to be taken literally in all its words. So, I choose to believe, but I don't know.

What I do know, is that I am an immortal spiritual being inhabiting this temporary body known as Rodney Carl Martin, Jr. I have been outside of it and seen the world without physical eyeballs. How is such a thing possible? There are many stories of others doing similar. Frequently, they have suffered trauma or had drugs or both (like during surgery). I had neither of these—merely a spiritual epiphany.

Also, I have performed miracles which were only possible because I had "complete and absolute certainty." So, careful, my friend, what you call "worthless." You might be missing out on the greatest discovery of the universe.

You said, "I'm being called arrogant by a guy who thinks he's invented an equation bigger than Einstein's. Yeah..." @Titen-Sxull, you really are loose with your accusations and your logic. Show me (prior to your earlier comment) where I "called" you arrogant. Please! Perhaps you are being arrogant, but I don't recall ever calling you by that label (at least before your earlier comment). Could it be instead your strong ego attachment to science and my referring to some scientists being arrogant?

But think about your assertion concerning the equation. First of all, my expression is not an "equation." It is an "expression." You need an equals sign ("=") to have an equation. If Einstein's E=mc^2 is about conservation of energy and matter within the universe, but my expression is about the creation of all energy and matter as well as all other aspects of the universe, including space-time, then I'd say that my expression covers more territory. If it is an accurate expression for the process of creation, then I see no arrogance in that assessment, just a simple statement of fact. My ego wants to take credit for that expression, but ego had no part in its discovery. Do you understand what I'm saying about ego? Ego can never reach "complete and absolute certainty." Such certainty can only exist in a discontinuous realm—that of creation. Ego is full of space-time (full of the continuity studied by science), and can never enter the realm of timelessness. It won't fit. It's too fat with time and space.

I appreciate the apology concerning my "equation" (expression). I sincerely hope you one day understand it the way I intended it. As I stated in my article, it is not entirely mathematical. It is certainly symbolic and shares some traits with a mathematical expression.

And if you don't already understand why I choose to describe skepticism and doubt as biased, then read on concerning your "moon hoax" example.

Well, duh! After arguing valiantly against the idea that doubt is biased, you say, "Doubt and skepticism can be biased to either belief or non-belief." Yikes! It looks like you just shot your earlier argument in the foot. @Titen-Sxull, don't let your ego force you to protect the wrong thing. You already have high regard for what is good about science. Bravo! Don't ruin it by making up "shit" about science. And I wish you hadn't been so arrogant as to bring up that scatological word. Now, my ego is all over it and I'm starting to feel arrogant. My bad!

Doubt is negatively biased against a proposition. If you doubt that the sun will rise tomorrow, that is a negative bias against the sun rising. If you doubt the doubter, then you are negatively biased against their belief. Yes, this makes you positively biased about the sun rising, but the doubt of the second person was not aimed at the sun rising, but at the first doubter. Understand? Doubt is negative in both cases.

In your moon hoax example, say Johnny doubts the moon landing ever happened. That's a negative bias against the moon landing ever happening. Say Billy doubts that the moon landing was a hoax. That's a negative bias against the hoax. He has no doubt against the validity of the moon landing story. Billy only doubts the hoax. See? Billy's doubt is not "positive" toward the moon landing story. He has NO doubt about that story. So his doubt is not "positive" toward anything. The result of his doubt (negative) toward the hoax, is a belief (positive) in the validity of the moon landing story. Certainly, there is a positive to be found in Billy, but it is not directly associated with his doubt. Got it? I hope so. I think I used up all my tokens on explaining this.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Qwark (from 2 days ago)

Wow! Qwark, what a delightful display of ego, emotion and illogic.

You know, you speak very good "erudite." I was starting to learn from you. I can speak "pedantic." I also speak "obfuscation" on occasion, though I prefer not to. I also speak over twenty programming languages, plus a healthy smattering of Spanish, a touch of Russian, German and Basque, and am now learning Cebuano. But when you balk at my "religious" speak, I'm flabbergasted. You think that is the whole me? Also, I'm flabbergasted that you associate my "religious" speak with that spoken by every other "follower." I speak an entirely different dialect, and your feeble ear could not tell the difference? That's what ego and arrogance will do to a fellow. It blinds one to the ability to tell differences and similarities. For them, they're all equal. How shallow of you. And, like you, no insult intended. Fare well, my friend. Don't let the door to eternity slap you on the backside.

The "followers" you are used to, also condemn my "drivel." So, you're in good company. You have something in common with the ones you loathe. You are… (dare I say it)… just like them! Ohhhh-h-h-h! That hurt… so good! Thanks for the laughs, Q.

I will miss your quirky lessons. I always enjoy learning new things from widely different points-of-view. Unlike you.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston (replying to your first comment 3 days ago):

"Not me?" you said. Really? Then why did you include the Thomas Paine quote in response to my talk of miracles? I applaud you for your cordial approach to implying that I am a liar. Heck, for all you know, I could be a liar. Or I could be some frail flower of a guy who is so bowled over by the beliefs of others that I cannot help myself but be taken in my their delusions. Ohhh-h-h-hhh! The thought of it makes me wilt. (LOL!)

Okay, you'll have to bear with me. I'm not taking anything seriously today. I'm in that rare mood of impatience.

How convenient of you to make such a brash statement that, "In all of recorded history, though, there has yet to be a single case where the natural law of gravity failed to operate." And then to turn around to any such reports in recorded history and call them "frailty," "misstatements," "mis-observations," "misunderstandings," or "misinterpretations." Wow! That's very biased of you.

Have all of the "misses" happened in the past? Certainly. Have there been exceptions to your "rule?" That's the sticky point.

I've yet to find anyone who is skeptical of miracles being brave enough to discuss my one most startling miracle on its details. @Qwark turned tail and ran, but not before thumbing his nose at it. Reminds me of a picture of African primitives hesitantly rushing forward to swat the front of a jeep, before vanishing into the anonymity of the crowd. They were not willing to accept the metal monster standing right in front of them, so they swatted at it and ran away, hoping that the impossible jeep would somehow disappear. How thoroughly primitive.

Will someone—anyone—discuss the miracle? Someone who is critical of it? I've been longing for that ever since I put it up. I want someone to tear it apart logically (not egotistically). I make it a dare! I dare you to do it, and call you "chicken" if you don't. Not just you, AKA Winston, but anyone who has the brash arrogance to diss it then run away before discussing its merits—the details of the event. No one can seem to sit still long enough to do that. They're all primitive natives taking their turns at the swat.

@AKA Winston, you disappoint me. First of all, you won't discuss the details of a very real miracle with not only a witness of the event, but the creator of the event. And you have the gall to imply that I am a liar. Calling me a liar (or even implying it by including Paine's quote) is fair enough, but ignoring the real enchilada when you have an example of a miracle, is downright pretentious. It sounds like a story my brother Terry told me about Carl Sagan. One of his books critical of "pseudo-scientists" included a chapter he later withdrew, because someone found it obvious that Sagan had never read the man's work. Sagan was being fraudulent. Maybe he had a tight schedule and had to rush the book to market. That's still no excuse for not reading the material he was critiquing.

"Chicken!" There, I said it. It makes my ego feel good to say that, but I'm disgusted in myself that I have to stoop this low to provoke a meaningful response.

All of your theorizing about miracles is a bunch of horse dung, if you can't man up and face an apparent story of a real miracle. Say for a moment that my observational skills are better than average and that I am not lying about the incident. Say that it wasn't a mis-observation or a misinterpretation or any other miss.

You and @Titen-Sxull have me challenged. I like it. You're both helping to keep these 60-year-old gray cells alive with interest. That's delightful. I'm hungry for more.

But I'm not going to let you off the hook for making illogical statements. When you said, "In all of recorded history, though, there has yet to be a single case where the natural law of gravity failed to operate," you were ignoring all of the reported incidents of this happening. Duh!

Yes, if a scientist ignores all evidence contrary to his hypothesis and reports only those which agree with his hypothesis, he is guilty of scientific fraud. Welcome to that fraudulent club, AKA.

If Jesus existed, and there is a great deal of evidence that he did, and if he walked on water (and there is some evidence that he did), then he confounded gravity. If Marco Polo in his delirium in recovering from his avalanche in the Hindu Kush actually saw a Tibetan Buddhist monk levitate, then here is another example of gravity being confounded. If Moses actually parted the sea, then gravity was being thwarted there, too.

For those incidents, we weren't there. Fair enough. They could be complete fabrications. But you have on the other side of this dialog someone who claims with a most certain conviction to have performed a so-called miracle. What about the incident is non-miraculous? I'd like to know. How is it not a miracle? Can you tell me that?

@AKA Winston, you seem to understand statistical probability, to a degree. But do you realize that such probability is based on the "continuity" of physical reality. Without such continuity, nothing is predictable, and statistics become an impossibility. Science studies this continuity-bound realm and does a damn good job of it, despite the human frailties of scientists. But creation is superior to continuity, so cannot be touched by statistical probabilities. In this regard, miracles are unreasonable.

If I were in a battle, I would take a troop of unreasonable bastards to a sniveling group of reasonable retards any day. In a life-and-death challenge I want someone who can rise above reasonableness and above the idea that "it can't be done." In that situation, if it "can't be done," you're dead. So much for reason and shallow thinking.

But we're talking far beyond this. We're talking of a realm outside space-time—one steeped in discontinuity—the kind where walking on water is possible.

So @AKA, are you brave enough to take the challenge? Are you brave enough to discuss the details of a real miracle?


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Fatfist, thanks for stopping by. Your comment sounds a bit like a blatant advertisement for your own hubs. Okay, fair enough. I can understand you wanting others to stop by and get the whole message. I feel the same way about my hubs.

You make some good points about truth being truth no matter what we believe it to be. Bravo! I have made similar arguments elsewhere. Science works hard to discover what those truths are. As @Titen-Sxull point out so well, scientific method is the best tool for doing this (at least in the physical realm).

I'm not claiming anything about the finiteness of the universe. For all I know, it could be temporally infinite. So, no! Your statement is not "my" theory. I said no such thing as my theory.

Yes, I can rationally explain the possibility of creation happening. And you make an entirely brash claim that, "Not a single human in history has been able to explain whether creation is even a possibility." Boy, I'd like to see you prove that one. Have you interviewed every human in history? I'd like to know how you did that.

@Fatfist, if you had not made such a brash claim, I might be inclined to visit your hubs and give my reasoned response, but life is short and right now I'm enjoying a conversation with @AKA Winston and @Titen-Sxull.


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston, thanks for a most enlightening and entertaining debate.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Qwark (from 22 hours ago), you seem to know me so well. Adios, my friend.


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@nightwork4 (from 20 hours ago). Thanks for stopping by. And it looks as though no one got the pun. I'm gonna have to work on my comedy routine.

So you understand that the universe was somehow created, but that it wasn't a god or the God. Hmmm-m-m! How about the Tooth Fairy? Does that work for you? Or maybe the Easter Bunny? Can't be Santa Clause, because he's already busy managing toy building and that one whirlwind night of deliveries; he's gotta have a break sometime. Or, wait. Oh! I got it… It was one of those rocks flying around in space that created the universe. But, well, so,… do rocks think?

And, here's a simple question: Can an equation exist without an equals sign? You seemed to think I was using some kind of mathematical equation. Can you tell me what it looks like? And if you see a symbolic expression that you don't understand, do you always call it "nothing new?"

Now, enlighten me, if you will. What is this "something" that created the universe, but is not a god? I really would like to know.


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@James Watkins (from 12 hours ago)

Whew! Thanks for stopping by. I needed a boost. I was beginning to feel like Conan the Barbarian—knee deep in blood and guts and more ghoulies on the way. All in a night's work, though.

Deep? The "atheist believing in nothing" bit was supposed to be an elaborate pun, but no one seemed to get it. It seemed the atheists became defensive and forgot to bring their senses of humor. But it's all fun and games.

The symbolic expression for creation? Now that is a true work of art. I suppose, with so many calling it an equation, I should upgrade it to one. E = (0/n)^-1 perhaps, where "E" represents any "effect."

About the forces of darkness, they are only as powerful as we allow them to be. I deleted one of my own replies, because I had fallen into the spell of that evil and started to speak through ego rather than through the spirit. That was painful.

I agree, James, you can't make a silk purse out of a pig's ear. That's one miracle no one can perform, because the pig's ear has free will and doesn't want to be a silk purse. Perhaps I needed to learn that first hand. And I thought I could learn something about the atheists' points-of-view. That much, at least, was easy.

Thanks for the admiration, but after this hub, I may need a vacation to clean the bits of ego stuck to my carcass. Slaughtering ghoulies isn't easy.


fatfist profile image

fatfist 5 years ago

Hi lone77star,

"Your comment sounds a bit like a blatant advertisement for your own hubs."

Not at all. Only people who posit wild "creation" claims and are scared to post a refutation in my hubs make such remarks. I was merely trying to get you to understand the rational explanations backing up my statements. Maybe you confused me with an atheist troll, but I assure you that is not the case. I don't subscribe to the clubs of atheism, theism, or agnosticism, or any other club.

“Yes, I can rationally explain the possibility of creation happening.”

Great. Then you would be the very first human in history who can do this. Here you go, let's follow the Scientific Method....

lone77star Hypothesis:

At some instant in the past, there was no matter (atoms) and no space (nothing).

lone77star Theory:

I will now rationally explain how space was created as follows _______________.

I will now rationally explain how matter was created as follows _________________.

Please fill in the blanks, lone77star. I am looking forward to finally understanding how your claim for such an alleged consummated event can be explained. I am eagerly awaiting your rational response.

“Boy, I'd like to see you prove that one.”

What you consider as ‘proof’, 77, is a LIE to everyone else. Proof is naught but opinion and its only purpose is to persuade. If you disagree......and I hope you do......then please objectively define this formidable term (proof) which makes or breaks your argument. How does one go about objectively ‘proving’ something in reality without injecting their subjective bias/opinion into the conclusion?

In science we don’t prove. In science we only explain, and we do rationally. That’s what a “theory” does.

“Have you interviewed every human in history?”

Huh? What does the opinion of a human observer have to do with reality? You didn’t answer this question I asked you before. Besides, if any human in history has rationally "explained" creation, then the explanation should be documented, right?

Thanks for your reply.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

(@AKA Winston, thanks for a most enlightening and entertaining debate.)

lone77star,

You are welcome. And thanks for being gracious enough to allow me to explain a contradictory side. I do agree that subjective demonstrations can seem quite real. I notice, though, that you end the discussion once I request an objective test for miracle abilities.

Why is that always the case in matters of belief?

I do want to address one misunderstanding you hold as to something I said - I am not calling you a liar, as I do not know you or your motivations. You may well believe totally in what you claim. At the same time, you may be a charlatan. I only pointed out possibilities and wondered if you had acknowledged to yourself that your miracle may have not occured at all.

I say this because when I was in my early twenties, asleep one night, I had a dream that an eerie ghostlike apparation was coming toward my bed, and it was terrifying. Somehow, though, I realized or knew instinctively that I was asleep and came to the conclusion that if I opened my eyes and woke up the illusion would disappear - I opened my eyes and the vision remained. Panicked, I thought that if I turned on the light that surely this thing would disappear. I turned on the bedside lamp and she/it was still there - for a bit and then it was all over. No message, threat, damage. Just an odd event in my life that only brought momentary fear.

Do I consider that proof of anything? No. It has never happened again. Most likely it won't. What caused it? I really don't care - although it seemed a long time it was in reality just a few seconds of a continuous dreamstate, no doubt. It is not even worth repeating as a story except as example of weird.

All I am asking is that if you have considered that what happened to you couldn't have been the same type thing - something like a powerful daydream-like state. I'm simply suggesting that what you truly believe to have been a miracle was nothing more than your mind's self-creation of a believable miraculous illusion so real-appearing that it fooled even your conscious self.

But then, that is the problem with all proclaimed miracles - they never leave around objective data that can be analyzed - they are always based on subjective claims.

When you decide to regrow an amputee's limb, give me a buzz. I would love to be there.

Edit: I just noticed this response - hadn't read it that closely before.

(In a life-and-death challenge I want someone who can rise above reasonableness and above the idea that "it can't be done." In that situation, if it "can't be done," you're dead. So much for reason and shallow thinking.)

Thank you for clarifying into which camp you fit - squarely into the middle of the William Craig Lane fantastico's camp who when faced with a dichotomy between reality and faith are taught that faith is the superior position. Well, all I can say is then the real bullets start flying, I am betting your Wilshire Miracle abilities cannot create an objective bulletproof vest.

Ciao.


pjcrow profile image

pjcrow 5 years ago

i enjoyed reading this. It was thought provoking and i appreciate that. I am an atheist, so i suppose one could say i "believe" in nothing, but i claim atheism not to say what i believe in, but to say what i don't believe in, and that is every religious or spiritual concept i have yet heard.Of course no one can know beyond doubt, so maybe i should call myself an agnostic, but i hate the idea of having to give a theist the credit of having answers that could potentially be right, because I'm sure if some spiritual, deity controlled realm that spawned us all exists, then it is most certainly nothing similar to anything we humble humans have yet contrived. And so i am an atheist.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Okay, @Fatfist, you're welcome for the reply.

Try http://hubpages.com/hub/Anatomy-of-a-Miracle. If you don't understand the answer here, then I can't help you.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 1 of 2]

@AKA Winston, let me start off, first, by apologizing. You were gracious enough to take the time to explain your viewpoint in detail. Very well thought out, and very thoughtful. I was letting ego get the upper hand, and I didn't like it. I didn't end the discussion so much as take a breather to clean off a heavy accumulation of ego (my own). I had posted 500 words, but didn't like the direction it was going, so I deleted it and replaced it with 10 words. The erroneous conclusion you derived from this action is also interesting.

I also have to apologize, because my reply today is still not entirely without ego on my part. Pesky, tenacious little devil. So, I hope you'll bear with me.

Yes, subjective demonstrations of miracles can seem quite real, but so can objective ones. You've tirelessly given me your detailed viewpoint. Bravo! I get it. There is a great deal of logic there. Again, bravo! But it's incomplete. You still haven't manned up to discuss the details of the event as I witnessed it.

Your dream example of supernatural delusion is well taken, but the circumstances in traffic are quite different than that of sleeping at night. Lucid dreams can seem very real. Been there, done that. Is it a fair comparison to relate your dream delusion to my waking event?

@AKA Wilson, have you acknowledged to yourself that your entire life may not have occurred at all as you remember it? That you may really be in a padded cell someplace merely dreaming all this technology stuff of internet and hub pages? Or stuck in a "copper-top" situation dreaming away your life in the Matrix? Or do you take your perceptions as largely valid, especially the waking ones?

When you get in your car and drive, are you aware of other cars around you? Isn't that an objective observation? And if, in the middle of rush hour traffic, the center lane opens up for two miles with roughly 2000 cars holding that pattern of openness for four minutes, could that be an objective observation?

What's at stake in your worldview, if my miracle happened exactly as I say it did?

Have I ever considered that I could have been seriously hallucinating? Yes, the thought did cross my mind. Why would you, @AKA Winston, ever reject the idea that any ordinary event in your life was not a hallucination? How could you be so sure? Please answer this question, if nothing else. This is a critical point of understanding.

I understand what you're suggesting. And it doesn't take a genius IQ like mine to appreciate what that means. Okay. You made your point. Can we move on to my topic, now?

How objective is 2000 cars? That's pretty solid. That's as solid as an amputee's regrown limb. Are you one of those who will disbelieve even the regrown limb? Say for a moment, you're shown pictures of before and after. You get the doctors' reports, but still disbelieve? If a dozen of those 2000 drivers some day read one of my online articles and respond with a note that they were there and witnessed the event, would that convince you of the objectivity of my observation? Or would you disbelieve just because you hold that miracles are impossible?

Two thousand years ago, so the story goes, there were dozens of miracles by one man and several of is followers. All of them were objective, touchy-feely, observable, tangible events. The teacher was asked to prove himself in front of the skeptics, but he denied them. Supposedly, he had the power of the universe and was far more expert at miracles than I, and yet he refused to demonstrate to them. There are several reasons why he would not put on a magic show for them. Can you, in your lofty intellect and capacious imagination conjure even one of those reasons? And the reasons have to do with the very mechanics of creation being discussed.

If you go into a laboratory and see some guy about to perform some experiment on flame, and you start squirting water all over the place, dousing the entire room, that makes it a bit difficult to start the flame or to strike the now soggy matches. Flame represents the faith to do miracles; water represents the doubt inherent in skepticism and the need for proof before the flame (miracle). But, my dear @AKA Wilson, in the realm of creation, things don't work that way. You got the cart before the horse, if you require proof before you will have faith.

The purpose of our sibling teacher's visit to this planet was not to dazzle us with miracles and make us believe. Not even close. The purpose was to awaken the sleeping immortal within. This can only be done with humility—an complete lack of ego. Us performing miracles only exercises this ego-less state. Requiring proof only feeds ego. If there were another way around this, I'm sure the "God" group (the ones already awake) would have thought of it by now.

Take the mind, for instance. It is a bit counterintuitive compared to physical reality. If you push against a physical object it might move. The harder you push, the more or faster it moves. In the mind, if you push, you get more resistance. Only by letting go do you get anywhere. Forget where you left your car keys? Put your mind on something else for a few moments. The memory will come back to you. Try to push for it, though, and frequently the memory eludes you. Unlike physical reality, the harder you push in the mind, the more it resists the effort. Creation is a bit like that, only it is absolute. Effort in even the slightest and you fail. Relax completely and you get it all.

[continued in Part 2]


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

[Part 2 of 2]

@AKA Wilson, you really don't know which "camp" I'm in. Missed it by several parsecs. My battlefield example had more to do with unreasonableness, not miracles, though the two can be related. In a scientific lab, the reasonable fellow might say why something "could not be invented." During World War II, there was a fellow who had an idea for a weapon that the reasonable blokes said couldn't be done. He proved them wrong. He was unreasonable. He was a winner and a doer. He got things done, while others stood around and whimpered about how impossible it was, and how Hitler was going to whip their butts because there was nothing they could do. In a war, such winners make the difference between winning and losing the war. Such attitudes rise above the "impossible" and make it happen.

@AKA, if you were in a battlefield, some of your buddies were lying in pieces all around you, part of one's intestines draped over your shoulder, part of a skull chip lodged in your teeth and brain mush pasted all over your face, bullets whizzing past your head, would you feel a little fear? Even just a little?

The faith to do miracles is entirely fearless. Perfectly fearless. That's how hard it is to achieve that state. How easily could you, @AKA, become entirely fearless in the middle of a battlefield's mayhem? It's not easy, so long as you are attached to your body and your ego. Can I perfectly let go of my ego? Don't I wish. Could I be entirely fearless in battle? Not on your life! Does that make my Wilshire Boulevard miracle any less significant? Give me a break!

If a baby takes a few, first steps, do you demand they flap their arms and fly? Of course not. That would be stupid. So is asking them to run the 100 meter dash. Well, duh! You performed one miracle, you should be able to perform them all. See how delightfully unreasonable you're being? But paradoxically, there is also some truth there. Faith is effortless. Yes, I should be able to do all miracles, but I've found only a few narrow areas of existence for which I could muster the perfect confidence. Only a few things seemed safe to my meager spiritual certainty. Yet we seem only able to struggle to let go of our attachments to ego and our possessions. That's where the real difficulty lies.

One of the youngest men to serve in World War II, Audie Murphy, was also the most decorated. He showed uncommon fearlessness in the face of enemy fire. He seemed to lead a charmed life. He had an uncommon UNreasonableness that people around him admired. This is the unreasonableness I'm talking about.

On one television program of strange phenomena, they showed the picture of a young man who liked to sky dive. One of his attempts resulted in chute failure. He plummeted toward the ground facing certain death. In the few moments he had left, he asked God to take him. Whether or not there is a God, is not the point here. He became humble, and humility is the antidote to ego. Only when ego is gone, can the true, immortal self stir from its slumber. Only then can miracles happen. The fact that he walked away with only a few scratches is a very objective, real, and tangible miracle. There are many "scientific" attempts to try to explain how such a thing was possible, but for a moment, he was in that fearless state (what he called "giving it up to God") and gained his "bulletproof vest." Regrettably, he became egotistical (something I have risked by sharing my Wilshire story). He felt invulnerable. He jumped out of an airplane a few weeks later, but this time without a parachute, certain that his charmed life would save him. Ego, being a physical universe construct, can never be the source of miracles, just as a rock cannot perform miracles. More ego, means a deeper sleep for the powerful immortal within. This time, the ground took him with a vengeance.

@AKA Wilson, my Wilshire event really happened. No lie, no misinterpretation and no other miss. The details of the event show it to have been an objective, tangible, real-world miracle, rather than something purely subjective. I understand that you can persist in disbelief. That's your business. And, from my perspective, that's your delusion.

From an objective, third-person omniscient point-of-view, if miracles are possible and past miracles were real, then you are missing out on one of the biggest breakthroughs in human history. That's what my "non-equation," symbolic expression is all about. This is the essence of creation—the foundation of physical reality. It explains how space-time, energy-matter, quanta, inertia and everything else of physical reality are possible. It explains how "the truth will set you free"—because anything from which you can be free, is a creation which persists. Spotting the truth of something is the act of the immortal self bringing the persistent object back to the instantaneity of creation. In other words, it ceases to have persistence in the time stream. And it doesn't take a genius to figure out what that means when all of us move into the next moment of time, and the non-persistent former creation is left behind.

Now, I feel better, and not just from stroking my own ego. Thanks for reading. I look forward to your response.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@pjcrow (from 3 hours ago), thanks for the delightful dissertation. Made me smile. And I'm glad you enjoyed the thought-provoking article. That was its real intent—to provoke thought and to cause exploration. Proving anything was entirely secondary.

And I find it interesting that you admit the possibility of some higher, possibly unknowable, power which may have been the conscious source of all we perceive.

I understand the reticence you have in giving any credence to the theists' arguments. Frequently they are pompous and illogical. They are confusing real "faith" with "delusion." Regrettably, that is too frequently the malady which cripples religions on this world.

Each of us have a body, a mind and an ego. And also, each of us has within us a sleeping immortal with the power of creation. I don't know the exact nature of that possible deity—that source of all reality—but it could be the aggregate of all of us immortals.

Many of us mortals (the Homo sapiens side) think we will die and that's all she wrote. Done! End of story! Are my memories of other times a delusion? Is my one incident of remote viewing while my body was wide awake all a figment of my imagination? And was my Miracle on Wilshire Boulevard (Anatomy of a Miracle) a hallucination? I don't think so. And that's why I continue to think there is more to this universe than the physical.


AKA Winston 5 years ago

(Why would you, @AKA Winston, ever reject the idea that any ordinary event in your life was not a hallucination? How could you be so sure?)

lone77star,

It's late and I am tired and your responses combined were too lengthy for me to reply to all, so I'll simply answer the above as you indicated this particular question had highest import.

It seems a strange question - why would I reject that when I tied my shoes it was a hallucination? I don't reject that possibility - but it is unimportant whether it is or is not. It would become important if I thought that while tying my shoes I could also create out of thin air a checking account for myself that held $1,000,000 and then wrote a check for a new Ferrari on that account.

You say in essence you are claiming you parted the red sea. But the sea doesn't stay parted, does it? You have no "film at eleven" of this event. So I say, I don't care if you believe you parted the red sea. Your "belief" evidence is subjective, regardless of how much you want ot make it sound objective. Even if it happened, the event only happened because it was observed to occur - and then an opinion was formed as to what the event meant. That makes it all subjective - observer dependent.

My life is no different regardless of the reality or delusional nature of this Wilshire event. However, if you do something concrete and permanent - regrow the arm of an amputee - well, now my life is different. It means that the very idea of nature has been changed.

I assure you we will make no further headway in this discussion. Thanks for your time and input. I really didn't mean to drag it out this long.

Adieu.


pjcrow profile image

pjcrow 5 years ago

There is nothing wrong with speculation of an afterlife or higher meaning or anything of that like. But when these harmless thoughts or desires metamorphosis into a religion, something with clear, written objectives and rules, that is when it becomes a problem. A religion is a tool for which mankind has no problem with exploiting to the fullest of its potential. I wish not to undo the ploy of men seeking answers to their fear of death, but i wish to extinguish that flame every time it sparks a religion.


fatfist profile image

fatfist 5 years ago

lone77star,

"Try http://hubpages.com/hub/Anatomy-of-a-Miracle. If you don't understand the answer here"

Interesting article you wrote. I've read similar articles before as there are many of them on the net.

But it doesn't explain whether the claim of an alleged creation of space & matter is even a remote possibility. If you care to do some research, you will find that nobody in the history of humanity has been able rationally support the claim of creation.

"then I can't help you."

Thank you for being honest with me. I appreciate it. Most people who claim creation will also assert that it is 100% certainty. But after several days of exchanges with them they end up confessing that they only have "faith" in creation.

Thanks for your reply. I can see this hub is keeping you very busy answering questions. I won't take up your time any further.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

I do kind of like the name "fatfist" though.


fatfist profile image

fatfist 5 years ago

Well, fatfist.com is up for grabs, James. Go for it :-)


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Pjcrow, you mention some very nice sentiments, but I wonder if they may be misdirected. Is it the harm that religion sometimes does that is the objection? Does science sometimes perpetrate harm? Of course it does, but that does not mean we should be rid of science. I had a first grade teacher who spanked me for being creative by telling science fiction stories on the playground during recess. I wouldn't rid the planet of first grade teachers because of that unwarranted violence.

Some may flock to religion out of a fear of death. But that is a rather shallow view of religion. Others may seek guidance on their way to spiritual awakening—things far more important than the temporary, physical body. Just because a group is formed to collect the wisdoms which will help an individual on that journey does not make that group evil, bad or unworthy of support.

The real evil in this world is ego, and each of us carries a portion of this. This is the source of selfishness, insensitivity, arrogance and more. Religions have used ego, but so has every other organization on the planet. Be careful what you condemn. You might inadvertently point at yourself.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AKA Winston, thanks for taking the time to explain your viewpoint.

I guess the area of "belief evidence" is the critical point here, for you. I made certain observations, but you do not feel they were objective observations. But I disagree with your implied definition of "objective."

One online definition states, "'subjective' meaning within the mind and 'objective' which has actual material existence in the real world."

The cars on Wilshire Boulevard were real. Wilshire Boulevard was real. The positions of those cars relative to each other were real. And the movements of those cars (or lack thereof) were real-world and objective.

I can understand interpretation being suspect. I can also understand the veracity of my observation being at question.

And I seem to see in your argument a willingness to accept a miracle has happened if it is videotaped for the evening news. Which reminds me of the age-old question, "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around, does it make a sound?" Of course it does.

And just because I don't have videotape of the event doesn't change the way it happened.

Does the very idea of nature change because there is videotape to record the change? Or can such a change exist without videotape?

At the very least, you have a strange notion of "objective," and by your implied definition, it seems that nothing could ever be "objective," because it is all observer dependent. Even the videotape is something observed and seems "subjective" by your view.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@FatFist, thanks for your comments and feedback. More than once you told me what my views were, but got them wrong. Not a good sign. Plus, you make several unsupported claims. For instance, you said in your first post, "Not a single human in history has been able to explain whether creation is even a possibility." To which I asked, "Have you interviewed every human in history?"

And then you replied, "Huh? What does the opinion of a human observer have to do with reality? You didn’t answer this question I asked you before. Besides, if any human in history has rationally 'explained' creation, then the explanation should be documented, right?" But your original statement said nothing about documentation. Could someone have offered a verbal explanation? And not all written works of the past still exist. You said, "never" and then balked at proving your statement. What does the opinion of a human observer have to do with reality? Well, you made the claim. I'm just showing you the holes.

My article explains how creation is possible. In fact, it gives a step-by-step procedure for it. Plus it gives a real-world example of its use.

You said, "Most people who claim creation will also assert that it is 100% certainty. But after several days of exchanges with them they end up confessing that they only have 'faith' in creation."

And what if "faith" were defined as "100% certainty?" Then there would be no "confession"—merely a repeated statement of fact. If you really read my article, you would see that I define faith this way. You will also see that I say that 99.999999% confidence is not faith. You seem to imply that there is a contradiction between faith and 100% confidence, but they are the same.


A.Villarasa profile image

A.Villarasa 5 years ago from Palm Springs

Hello Mr. Martin:

Fatfist's statement "What does the opinion of a human observer have anything to do with reality" reveals him to be a follower of Objectivism. Objectivism would deny man's ability to interpret material reality that is based on his inate need to apply meaning and purpose to that material reality. At the same time, Objectivism would deny man his ability to perceive reality beyond its immediate physical form... in the objectivist's world, material reality does not have any kind of spiritual connotation, and any attempts to interpret reality in anything aside from the material is illogical and irrational.

From my perspective, what is irrational is for reality to exist without someone knowing that it exist.... and that it could be interpreted in so many different ways depending upon who is beholding it.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Thanks, Mr. Villarasa, for the astute observation and analysis. Some choose blindness because it suits them.

And there is a level at which interpretation becomes creation -- cause instead of effect. That's a pretty blissful state, and all too rare in our lives.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Hi lone77star

Great hub and great discussions. I think it all boils down to this. We pretty much all agree that something can not come from nothing. So something has to have produced all this.

I didn't say 'created' on purpose, because that is not a given.

If you define god as that which produced us, and we all agree that something produced us, then there is most definitely a god.

But the discussion then turns to the gods state of mind. Does it have one?

In other words: the question we must ask next is, is god conscious in some way, or is it a process?

Something must have always existed for anything to exist now. That's why theists say god is eternal.

So now we have something eternal, which must have been creative if we are to exist, and of course we know we do.

But there is no reason that 'something' has to be a conscious being. None what so ever. If nature is eternal, and by nature I mean the process of existence, then all requirements are filled (even those of Thomas Aquinas)without the need for an outside conscious beings.

In light of the fact that we know the process of existence, exists, (the constant creative transformations of energy/matter)and we do not know that it is conscious in any way in and of itself, there is no need to believe a conscious god exists, unless and until there is substantial reason to think so.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, this is some delightful reasoning, and fun to think about.

You base some of your reasoning on a conditional: "if nature is eternal..." Is it? I guess we would have to wait forever to know for sure.

Nature has a perfectly balanced structure. The mass of electrons compared to that of neutrons and protons. The strength of the various forces--nuclear weak force, gravity, electromagnetic, etc. Then we have covalent bonds in chemistry, plus fusion down to iron and fusion up from this element powering the universe on a physical level. Did such structure and balance merely happen? I can see how life can come from "accidents" of nature, but nature itself?

And then we have miracles, where conscious thought leads to very specific effects, instantaneously. Pretty cool stuff. And seeing without mortal eyes--that blew me away for weeks! These prove to me a very spiritual (non-physical) component to what I refer to as "me." These give me a substantial reason to think that something "created" the universe. That "something" may be unlike anything we mortals can describe in our many languages.... I don't know.

Does a conscious "God" exist? I'm convinced of it, but I do not yet know the exact nature of it. Perhaps the words "love," "humility," and "confidence" come closest.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

"if nature is eternal..." Is it?

What I mean is, if the process of existence is eternal. Energy can not be created or destroyed as per the laws of conservation. Neither can mass. Every scenario in science which would bring about this universe starts with compressed or potential energy. Quantum fluctuation, for instance. So without a god,energy/mass would be the candidate for something that is eternal.

I know you experienced something. But can you be sure you are interpreting it correctly?

In any case, I have had many extraordinary experience which I recount in one of my hubs. But I still have no reason to think they were supernatural.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Lonestar:

(0/n)2

0 = nothing

N = anything

Nothing divided by anything = nothing.

Nothing squared = nothing.

????

There are no atheists.

"Atheism" defined is simply a disbelief or a denial of the existence of god/s.

"God/s" is but a concept which has no basis in fact. It is but a subject of metaphysics.

Since god/s is naught but a concept created by the fertile imagination of an evolving species of life, there is "nothing to deny but the concept.

Literally, that would mean that there are only "aconceptthiests."

I am an "ignostic."

When I considered myself to be a "strong atheist," I never once imagined that "...there was no source to the universe."

Of course there was a "...source to the universe."

Where did you come up with the idea that alledged atheists thought/think that?

We (all of us) can only make an educated "guess" at what it was.

At this point in human evolution, we, in fact, exist as babes-in-the-crib in ref to knowledge of all that exists within and without the essence of existence.

Skepticism (Pyrrhonism) is basic to learning and to an understanding that all knowledge can and should be questioned.

Skepticism of this sort can only lead to greater understanding and, hopefully, progress.

I am trying to figure out the point of this hub.

It seems to me, that is has a strong hint of theistic purpose.

Perhaps an under-the-table attempt, by a "fundie" theist, to "tout" his belief in the myth of god/s?

Hmmmm?

Qwark


AntonOfTheNorth 5 years ago

Well since everyone else is in . . . :)

"The idea that something is impossible to know has always disconcerted me. I figured that with sufficient study and logic, one could devise a way to know just about anything."

What are the odds that an ant will ever figure out what a highway is for?

I submit 0. It is beyond the capability of an ant to determine its intended use, even as the ant uses it for the same thing we do (to move easier and faster). And some species of ant are pretty decent instinctive engineers.

Reality is not beyond our ability to speculate, but it is not unreasonable to assert that it is beyond our ability to know, at least while our existence is defined, contained or connected to our corporeal nature.

I think the debate is unnecessarily coloured by the notion that 'rational' equals 'good' and 'irrational' equals 'bad'

a faith position requires non-rational processes.

Using science to argue a faith position (even as a joke) is using water to burn a pile of firewood.

Using faith to argue a science position is exactly the same.

But saying the argument is not rational is just that. It isn't rational. Doesn't mean the argument cannot be correct or persuasive. Just means it is not rationally derived. It is emotionally derived.

We evolved with both rational and non rational processes as integral in our decision making.

Most times we just argue about which part we are using at any one time.

Accept that, and accept that no one knows the answer, and the debate becomes exploratory, not confrontational

the possibility of discovery increases the more people agree on what is trying to be discovered.

I submit that the goal of determining the nature and purpose of reality (or lack thereof) is more important than determining who is arguing more effectively.

cheers


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

...a "confrontational" chat about "nothing" can only result in "nothing," ergo (0/n)2 can only = nothing.

Oh well...? :)

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

To Slarty (from 3 weeks ago).

Slarty, you make some good points, as always.

On the subject of conservation of energy and matter, I agree. Within a closed system, conservation makes sense. But what put the system there? What put the continuity of time there? What allowed into existence the points of view which we call space? That's part of the enigma which keeps the subject interesting, at least.

I have a marginally genius IQ (consistently tested at 139-140), I've had training in science, logic and mathematics, and I've graduated the university summa cum laude. I know there are quite a number of brighter bulbs than mine, but I'm no slouch when it comes to observation and analysis. Developing software for the marketplace demands keen analytical skills.

So, am I sure that my analysis is correct? You bet I am, at least on the big points. Miracle? Yes. And I'm not talking small, ordinary, everyday "miracle" stuff. I'm talking breaking the laws of physical reality. Like what the carpenter was supposed to have done on the Sea of Galilee.

I can understand that such things are rare. I've seen what it takes to achieve such a miracle. And I see that I still have imperfections which make achieving that state regularly very difficult.

I've also had many extraordinary experiences which were not "miracles." Telling the difference is crucial, certainly. If you care to, check out my "Analysis of a Miracle" hub. There, I attempted to address some of the details of observation and analysis.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Quark (from 3 weeks ago), it's always a delight to hear from you. Your comments are always refreshing, irreverent, and stimulating.

You once said that I was just another ordinary believer. I expected much better from you, because I'm not and I work hard at making that point strongly.

I refrain from jumping into the belief "mold" of the masses, because I don't buy their interpretation. You want to cast me in their mold? Go ahead and try, but it's not a good fit.

Don't be so quick to judge when I write to one audience of which you are not a member. I try to speak many "languages." If you judge all of what I say, but one of those languages, then you deny yourself a real treat.

Most of the hub is a big "pun." I state that in another of my comments, above. Some people seem to lose their senses of humor when it comes to atheism and religion. Oh, well...

The formula, though, is directly from my own research into miracles.

I am inherently a spiritual being -- timeless and a source of creation (baby god, if you will). Miracles by me or anyone else would otherwise be impossible. I've done them, ergo I am a creator. I have walked the strands of space far from my own body and seen without mortal eyes, therefore I am non-physical -- "no thing!" Get the pun, now?

Are there any bodies born without a spirit attached? There might be. Could one of those bodies be yours? I hope not.

"Fundie?" Quark, I'm seriously starting to doubt your intelligence. I say enough things in my hubs to turn true "fundies" absolutely green with illness. The only thing I have in common with "fundies" is that we both have Homo sapiens bodies and you happen to apply the same label to both of us. Come on, Qwark. That's not very bright. Wouldn't you agree?

And regarding your comment from 22 hours ago:

I agree and I apologize for not getting back to you, sooner. Work has been a real bear, plus my family wants some of my time, and I love giving them what they need.

But I also have fun debating with you and others. So, here I am.

Thanks for stopping by.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@AntonOfTheNorth, thank you for your delightful insights.

I love your "ant" analogy. While we are only Homo sapiens bodies, we cannot truly experience ("know") the spiritual.

But I have been something other than the physical "ant." I have glimpsed the highway and its purpose. But like the Indian tale of the six blind men and the elephant, I may only have glimpsed the tail, the tusk, or the trunk.

That makes my experiences no less valuable. Combined with the experiences of others, it creates a tapestry of knowledge in a region for which the vocabulary is likely sorely inadequate.

For example, I read a hub by a Hindu, a few months ago, and had a major epiphany. For a brief while, the perfect state of "faith" (100% confidence + 100% humility) returned to me and a miracle occurred. It was yet another glimpse of the big "road" and what it all means.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

...in my life, I have met many "educated" derelicts.

When I read such as this:

"I have a marginally genius IQ (consistently tested at 139-140), I've had training in science, logic and mathematics, and I've graduated the university summa cum laude."

The 'proclaimer" becomes immediately suspect in my mind.

"IQ" is but a "facet" of the measure of "intelligence."

It only measures "aptitude" i.e. Adaptability to a new environment or to changes in the current environment;

Capacity for knowledge and the ability to acquire it;

Capacity for reason and abstract thought

and can be reduced by time and apathy or increased by time, study and understanding.

I graduated "magna-cum-laude" as a college undergrad with a consistently recorded IQ of 165!

I am now almost 70 and my IQ, measured at the University of Oregon, 5 yrs ago, indicated my IQ had dropped to 145!

Egads! How many "standard deviations did I drop? I'm only a "borderline genius!" lololol.

Sillyness can only be measured by the magnitude of the "belly laugh!"

Miracles exist only in the evolving minds of an infant species: Homo/sapiens,sapiens.

We are such an arrogant form of insipient, cosmic life!

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Quark, I have met a few such derelicts, too. And my ship has run aground on numerous occasions.

Yes, IQ is an inadequate measure, but it has its use. And I agree that it fluctuates. Some days, I don't feel smart at all. And all three of my younger brothers have long tested far above with IQ's of 169, 189, and 200+ (untestable). Having a conversation with my youngest brother has frequently gone way over my head -- like when we talked about adiabatic lapse rates and pressure gradients in an atmosphere. Whew!

I know what I saw. I know what I did, but I don't always have the ready ability to do it... or that's where I've put myself by my own "creation." Miracles? You bet!

And I prefer a good belly laugh to too much seriousness. Laughter is such good medicine.

Arrogance? I know it too well. That's the real killer, and ego is at the heart of it. Most of us are left with an active ego, thrashing about for attention, while the real us (the immortal) sleeps within the Homo sapiens shell.

At 61, I still seem to be holding my own. Co-author of my novel, John Dalmas, at mid-80's isn't doing so well, anymore, physically. His mind isn't as sharp any more through a form of dementia, but there are windows of lucidity, and delightful moments of levity.

This lifetime has been a good one. Better than most I've had. Though one about 11,600 years ago seems pretty vivid, still.

If we let go of our arrogance, we can see so much. Am I suspect? You bet I am. And I wouldn't have it any other way. I'm enjoying every minute of it.

Almost 3am, here, and my wife would be unhappy if she knew I stayed up late chatting with you. But I've enjoyed it. Thanks, Qwark.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Lone77star:

That was a "gentlemanly" response...much appreciated!

I'm sure that if we met we'd have some lively conversations.

"This lifetime has been a good one. Better than most I've had. Though one about 11,600 years ago seems pretty vivid, still."

You have quite an imagination. :)

Differences in understanding "reality" are as diverse as there are people who try to understand it.

Have a good night.

Just tell your wife that you retired early. It was the immortal you who had to reply to me. :)

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Qwark, I appreciate your participation in our long-distance, lively conversation. For such a young fart, you have a pretty astute mind. ;)

Yep, perhaps it was just imagination. I don't think it was a bit of undigested meat or the residual effect of all those psychedelic drugs I didn't take during the '60's. But I move between certainty and humility (restraint,... even skepticism), ever exploring the possibilities and meaning.

As far as religion, most people's take is a crock, in my book. Been there, done that! My grandfather was a Southern Baptist minister and missionary to Africa. I've moved far beyond that (at least in my own mind). Some will say that I've lost my way. In all humility, I hope so! Ego needs to die on this journey, if I am to survive.

Einstein valued imagination more than knowledge, and I can see why. Knowledge will only take you to known locations. Imagination will take you everywhere, including some very real places never explored before. That's how our dear Albert found Relativity. The dangerous zone is determining what's real and what's fantasy. This is not for the timid. It requires confidence, but also humility.

The first glimpse always remains highly colored with past experience and limited world view. Frequently, the first glimpse of a new discovery is a misperception, distorted by prejudices (sometimes unrealized). Humility is the only way to dispel such preconceptions and fixed ideas. I've offloaded hundreds of such dead weight. And yet it seems I've only scratched the surface.

Self-awareness has been key in my quest. It's a constant challenge. The mind doesn't always have the continuity of physical reality. Things placed there don't always remain in one place. And the mechanics are somewhat counterintuitive. Push harder on a car and it might actually move. Push harder on a memory and it more stubbornly resists being found. Sometimes, in order to remember where you left your book or car keys, you need to relax. You need to move toward more effortlessness. This is what my semi-mathematical expression is about in communicating the effects of creation. Could this describe what happened when Peter the fisherman stepped out of his storm-tossed boat to walk a moment on the sea with his master? Perfect confidence, utter humility, completely stripped of reason and ego.

Some people call such creation, "prayer." Are they asking a bearded old guy on cloud 9 (or Mt. Olympus)? Hardly. Are they asking the true inner self who has always had the ability of infinite creation? Perhaps.

Most people, though, get such prayer all wrong. When they say, "Please save us from the bank foreclosure officer," but their mind is picturing the fear of being kicked out of their home. So, what they are asking for is "fear" and "being kicked out of their home." Sad, but the lack of self-awareness has made their prayers seem futile. They say one thing, but "ask" for another. In reality, they always (always!) get what they "ask" for. Awareness is key.

How can one be so confident and avoid the devil named "arrogance?" That question has bedeviled me for years. It comes, it seems, with relaxing and being humble. This puts ego to sleep. It allows the true self to stir from its slumber. This is the "window" of opportunity for inspiration, when things seem magically to click into place, effortlessly. Top athletes call this the "zone."

What I enjoy most about discussing these things, my dear Qwark, is that I frequently re-discover these things, but from a slightly different point-of-view. It's fresh, slightly cleaner of past preconceptions. Sometimes, my "new" truth is discarded for something even better. This is when I find myself in the "zone."

(And yes, I did have a good night's sleep. Thanks!)


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Lone77star:

If your are convinced that you are are in your "zone," (whatever you "imagine" it to be) by golly that "preconcieved" decision is, definitively, yours to hold and embrace!

Now, what in the world does that lengthy harangue have to do with the title of this thread: "So you Believe in Nothing?"

(0/n)2=0, it's as simple as that.

It is, as it is so eloquently expressed in "Desiderata, "No doubt the universe is unfolding as it should."

Hawking, Einstein? Both highly imaginative men, who have been gifted with an aptitude for being able to visually express their impression of that which "SEEMS TO BE," in the form of math.

If we humans manage to exist and progress for another millenia, future man will study our history and will consider us to have been as naive and primitively ignorant as we consider our stone age ancestors to have been.

When our infant fingers reach the first rung of the evolutionary ladder and we manage to grip it tightly, the possibility that we MAY ascend to a position upon that first "rung" will exist.

At the moment, I, pessimistically, doubt that that possibility exists.

I "BELIEVE" in nothing because tomorrow is but a "hope," not an absolute.

We all create our "zone."

The "intelligent" amongst us will develop maleability of mind as the need to adjust that "zone," becomes a necessity to survive for as long as our genetic programming will allow!

Our beliefs are temporary!

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Hi Qwark,

Some lovely stuff in your last comment, but heavily tainted by pessimism.

I've been in the zone I described very rarely, but it feels quite different from the non-zone. Also, it seems to manifest itself as things falling into place, so that the feeling and circumstances all seem to be in harmony.

It's sort of like the Summer Olympics I saw a decade or two ago. One highly-favored East European gymnast fell from the parallel bars and blew everyone's cool, except for one humble, quiet American. Everyone after the fall suddenly had the jitters and couldn't get high marks for anything. Yet, the one American did not let the "air of failure" bother her. I seem to remember she got a perfect ten. She was in the zone; the others were not.

The lengthy harangue, as you call it, was part response to your previous comment and part musing about the subjects in general. And yes, Desiderata is quite eloquent throughout.

My expression was not purely mathematical. I stated that in the article. Your forcing it to be mathematical proves nothing. Yes, I understand that zero times anything is zero. So, you miss my point, big time. And it takes some work on your part to get it, but only if you're willing to invest time in that quest.

Yes, our beliefs are temporary. We can change our minds. We can learn. I see things from a more optimistic viewpoint and it seems to bear empirical fruit. Like the old saying, "you get what you put your attention on." Or, some people see lemons (disaster), while others make lemonade (success).

And scientists with "seems to be?" There doesn't seem to be anything imaginary about an atom bomb. Stand too close to that and empirically you're less than toast. The products of science are very real. Their understanding is close enough to make work the technology we use.

You say you believe in nothing, but it seems you believe in tomorrow being a "hope," not an absolute. Do you always contradict yourself? (I know, that's a loaded question, and I feel the mirror begging for my attention.)

Qwark, I've discovered something wonderful. I still don't have it all figured out, but my harangue was an attempt to explain where I'm coming from — my methods, my worldview, etc. It takes a certain viewpoint to see the landscape that I see. From where you're standing, now, you'll never see it. If you don't want to budge, that's your choice.

Sounds stubborn and grumpy, to me. My wife sometimes describes me that way, too.

Some people call my expression an "equation." It's not. There's no equals sign. Duh!

Some people try to make it into purely mathematical, and it isn't. Read the article again, and you'll see. It's symbols to describe some of the aspects of creational mechanics. Some of those aspects are like our ordinary mathematics, and some are not.

The value zero of (0/n) is not purely the mathematical zero. It indicates in the numerator zero duration. A more mathematical representation might be (0/n)*t, where "t" is time in whatever units. But that would not be strictly accurate, because the expression represents not only lack of persistence, but lack of manifestation in 3D space and sometimes in physical form.

The -1 (minus one) exponent acts very similarly to that of the mathematical counterpart in that it yields the reciprocal (n/0), but the added meaning is that this represents a removal of spiritual awareness and a change of assignment in the cause-and-effect status. Unlike the mathematical counterpart, (n/0) is not undefined, but potentially infinite duration, and complete solidity in physical reality.

Perhaps I could have used other symbols to represent this so that you and others would not be so inclined to think of it in purely mathematical terms. But this symbology helped me understand more clearly what I experienced 34 years ago.

It also puts my experience into perspective with the findings of science (in its study of the realm of continuity) and into perspective with some philosophical or religious statements made by someone who apparently had a good handle on bending or breaking the laws of physical reality. The idea that knowing the truth would set one free, is simple when you realize that spiritual awareness of a creation removes the persistence (space-time dimension) from it. It is reduced to an instantaneity — zero persistence — and returns to the original, inner expression of (0/n). One moment, the problem exists, the next moment one is free of it. Scientology counseling works this way by as-ising the source of a problem (what the Buddhists called "as-it-isness") -- the "truth" of the problem. If the problem persists, then empirically you have not yet discovered its "truth."

You can deny the existence of something all you want, Qwark. It won't make it go away. You can grumble about someone else being delusional because they think they can do something you cannot, but that's your decision.

You once jumped to the erroneous conclusion that I'm just another Christian fundamentalist crackpot (or something similar to that), and refused to continue the dialog. That was your choice, but based on what? A keyword or two, taken out of context? For someone with a superior IQ, it shows poor use of that intellect to judge so brashly without really understanding. But I should talk! I've done it, too. It seems to come from blindness and arrogance (both self-imposed).

My harangue may have not been interesting to you. My apologies. I'm happy to talk about something else. But don't dismiss a subject so quickly. There might be a goldmine staring at you. Too many times others have dismissed something only to find out that it was exactly that for which they were looking. One NASA father did not fall into that trap when he listened to his son solve a problem the engineers had struggled with for weeks. Humility goes a long way in this world. All too often, I forget to use it. My lovely wife helps me remember.

And perhaps not surprisingly, ego (the antithesis of humility) cannot exist in the zone (not the one you described). If someone is a grumpy old fart all their life, they would never discover the zone, and in fact, might suspect that it doesn't exist — that all those athletes who talk about it must be smoking some pretty heavy drug.

So, hold onto your fixed viewpoint, if you so desire. Does it really help you discover new things? For me and my experience, I think not.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Qwark ... Oh! And one other thing. Check out my "Numbers are Beautiful." I talk about zero a great deal, there.


qwark profile image

qwark 5 years ago

Lone77star:

You have offered "NOTHING" here to consider, that I haven't already studied, considered and conceptualized.

There is "nothing" yet to "BELIEVE" in but: "Cogito Ergo Sum :)

Finis.

Qwark


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Gotta love that Rene Descartes. Brilliant.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Another Rene Descartes statement: "Dieu en moi" (God in me). Also brilliant.


Apostle Jack profile image

Apostle Jack 5 years ago from Atlanta Ga

You said it well.


Cromper 5 years ago

lone77star,

Excellent hub and some fine comments to boot! (I skipped over the latest ones, please forgive me)

I come from the school of the finite universe, but for very different reasons to yours. I'm not sure how you can come to any kind of conclusion regarding a god or creator when there is no need for either.

With all due respect, I think your knowledge is as powerful as your need for a god/creator. It's quite surreal to read your detailed and articulate rational comments accompanied by your positive assertion that there is a creator or god.

I have also had an out of body experience (see my hub) and understand how real the experience is. But I don't rewind my thought processes back to a childlike state and start believing in a supernatural force (or whatever) that needs no explanation.

I have had many unexplained experiences in my life and, the more I live, the more I understand them. I do not stop investigating all the possiblities until I'm satified that I have come to a conclusion.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Thanks, Jack.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Hi, Cromper. Thanks for the interesting input.

You state that there is no reason for either God or a creator. A bold claim, but not backed up with reasoning. Do you find this viewpoint on "faith" alone?

So if there was no source to the universe (no creator), then how did it get here? Hawking's rather lame statement that gravity and the laws of physical reality were all that were needed misses a great deal of logic. Where did gravity come from? Where did physical law come from? And where did space and time come from? His pronouncements on this are weak, at best.

"With all due respect?" A somewhat suspect phrase, that.

So, you had an OBE. So, are you your Homo sapiens body, or something else? And if you read my hub on Anatomy of a Miracle, you'll get an inkling of where I'm coming from. Only a spiritual being can observe the universe from a non-physical viewpoint (non-Homo sapiens eyeballs). Only a spiritual being can bend, break or otherwise circumvent the laws of physical reality.

And bravo, Chomper. I don't stop investigating, either. That's part of the humility of an investigator. I don't pretend to understand all about spirit or God, but I think you presume to know too much when you make claims about "rewinding." And yet, a little "child-like" awe and wonder are good for everyone, including a scientist. Einstein swore by it.


Cromper 5 years ago

'So if there was no source to the universe (no creator), then how did it get here?'

The same question can be asked about a creator. How did the creator get here?

I suppose I should have said there is no 'requirement' for a creator. I would entertain the notion that there has to be a 'cause', but not a creation, because that in itself needs a whole load of evidence to show that it is a possibility.

As for my OoBE (I use that term because in Britain OBEs are medals dished out by the Royal Family), whilst the experience started off crystal clear with a definite feeling I was outside my body, the journey became more surreal and gradually ended up more like an hallucination. For me, that casts doubts about whether I really was outside my body.

I also had another experience when I was about six years old in which I had a near serious accident involving a car. I remember the feeling of the car brushing against me and pushing me to one side. I was fine, but the woman driver scolded me severely for running out into the road. The strange thing about this is that I remember the incident from two points of view. From my own body, and from that of an onlooker on the opposite side of the road. There was no one on the other side of the road, but I can take you to the exact spot where I see myself almost get run over.

Does this mean I have two souls?


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Cromper

I agree with your entire argument and have made it a few times myself. I've also "Astral Traveled" many times in my life through meditation and shamanistic methods. I have come to the conclusion that it is all in the head.

Well sort of anyway. That is to say I think there is a way we can get out of our bodies. But we are always tied to them. It is perhaps more of an expansion of the mind than really a leaving of the body. There are some medical phenomenon that seem to support that, as well as the EM and tectonic stress work of Doctor Persinger

But in any case I do not think it is evidence of a soul.

Near death experience is another example. It seems that what you see is dependent on what you believe. There are similarities but this can be explained perhaps by the similarities of the human brain.

In any case it seems to be the last attempt of the brain to create an escape rout for us. Or for itself to beat death. But I think when you actually die, it's lights out and good night Mary Anne. ;)


skye2day profile image

skye2day 5 years ago from Rocky Mountains

I agree with James Deep Dude. I am not for certain in your hub if you believe. I am inclined to say yes you do per a comment on my hub. This is my story and I am sitcking to it God is was and always will be. How can one rationalize the beauty to a bang theory. I think NOT How can one expain miracles in life. I suppose a scientist could explain his way out of a box not to be. God can use science and Believers in awesome ways. I can only pray the non believer come to truth before the day of judgement. May God help them before that time. Yes we do go back to the Father when we pass to one side of paradis or the other. I will stay on the light side, Thank You Lord God. God Bless you and keep you and lead you to truth always in Him.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Well the big bang is just a model. But if true I would find it infinitely more interesting and beautiful than a god. Particularly one you have to believe in or it tortures you for eternity. Not my kind of benevolence, mate. ;)


Cromper 5 years ago

Hi Slarty,

I have always been interested in Astral Travel but never took the time to take any practical steps. I never realised I'd had an OoBE until I was about 14 when I read about it in a magazine.

I agree with you, I think the mind can work beyond the body (it is all electrical impulses, is it not?) although not too far from the body. Does that make sense?I'm not sure if 'mind radiation' could ever be a possibility, but it would be interesting to discover that brainwaves do 'radiate'.

One thing that bugs me; I was only an innocent kid when I had my OoBE, so why didn't I see 'The Light' and pay a brief visit to heaven?

Maybe God just does not want me in heaven. Can't figure out why though. I don't have a criminal record and have lots of friends. I've never hurt anyone (intentionally) so why is God hiding from me?


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Cromper

It is common to see and feel the tie to your body. I always saw it as pastel colored energy or light. I've read others see it differently. But there is definately a connection maintained even in all the literature.

When I say astral travel I mean OBE.I'm not suggesting as some have that you visit other planets. lol... I find that idea strange considering my experiences. But I have moved around in a park for quit a while, while my body was sitting on a bench, for example.

But I tended not to get to far before I was snapped back, which always happened as soon as I started to have conscious thoughts. I've written a series of hubs about it all.

Anyway, the word Astral Travel was being used when I was young. But the new phrase is out of body experience these days.

If we are just energy/mass as the sciences tell us then one can imagine that at the atomic level there is little or no difference between the human and the outside, with atoms coming and going and interacting. Who knows what supposed supernatural phenomenon are linked to that level of our existence? There is still so much to figure out about the quantum and it's relation with the brain.

But if nothing else, OBEs can be fun, even if they are all just in the head. ;)


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper, wow. What a delightful discussion.

I wish I knew more about the relationship between spirit and body and the mechanics of spiritual perception while so deeply attached to a physical body. Indeed, something like that could become confusing if one is drifting back and forth between the spiritual viewpoint and the bodily viewpoint.

Two Souls?

Two souls? Very funny. The fact that your body continued to be aware and perceptive of its surroundings merely means that it was awake. That's physical perception. The body is not a soul or spirit. That viewpoint outside of your body might have been hallucination or your true self (soul).

The idea that the out-of-body viewpoint is a product of electrical impulses is interesting, but then it would seem that such an electrical field would be measurable. I know of no reports of scientists finding a disembodied electrical field that is projected from a Homo sapiens body.

God Hiding?

God hiding from you? That's also pretty funny. By your own decision, you are hiding from Him, not the other way around. Going to heaven or even living in heaven in the present is all a matter of decision. I have not yet found the ability to make that decision, but I suspect it requires letting go of a lot of attachments.

And your question, "How did the creator get here," is simple, really. He was always here. But then you have to realize that "always" (a human, physical universe term) is inadequate, because God is outside of space-time, so terms like "before," "after" and "always" are inapplicable. When you have an artist painting paintings, you can ask who painted the painting, but not who painted the artist. The artist is source and not made of paint. God is source and not made of physicality (space, time, energy and matter).


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, welcome and thanks for your equally delightful discussion.

Remote Viewing

Now, I have a question for you both. How could someone read the material in a closed room in which they had never physically visited? I met a fellow who had done this during spiritual research during the mid-1950's. Out of that research, the CIA later tried to make remote viewing work. With a bunch of skeptical scientists around, I'm not surprised that it didn't. Skepticism is the water which puts out the fire they were attempting to study.

Let's say his remote viewing story is true. How would you explain such a phenomenon? How would an organized field of electrons develop the ability to see colors, details and to read and transmit data back to the host body through solid walls? Like the Ptolemaic deferent, equant and epicycles, that's a lot of added complexity that seems entirely unnecessary, and likely utterly false.

Reincarnation

Or how would you explain the phenomenon of reincarnation as documented by Dr. Ian Stevenson -- http://www.ancientsuns.com/fwd/tlog/reincarnation-... ? One of his most interesting cases involved a woman who remembered hundreds of details from her prior life despite the former family members repeated attempts to trick her -- remembering pet names, and other details.

A Version of Hell?

The problem with thinking that you're only a meat body is that you will never wake up with that attitude. The spirit will forever remain asleep despite the repeated incarnations. And when the cavalry has gone, all that's left is the wailing and gnashing of the action-reaction lives of blood feuds, violence and brutality. I doubt seriously that civilization would persist under the weight of such selfishness -- such ego -- and without the guidance of our spiritual brethren. Perhaps that's one version of hell. You're welcome to it. I hope like heck I'm not around to experience it. I don't have it solved yet on that topic; still working on it.

And Slarty, the "torture" for eternity "drum" that you like to beat is a gross misunderstanding of God's intent. God is only love, and if you read the Bible with that as rule-of-thumb, then understanding the apparent contradictions take on an entirely new meaning.

So Many Interpretations

Not only do you have it messed up, but so do a whole truck-load of Christian fundamentalists, including my late, Southern Baptist minister grandfather. I know I don't have it all figured out, but I'm making progress. Understanding the Bible was never meant to be easy, though some lazy fundamentalists get off by thinking they already have it all figured out. That's arrogance. The goal of the Bible is humility (the complete opposite); a difficult-to-interpret Bible is entirely compatible with eliciting humility from those who are truly searching. Arrogance closes the door to spiritual awakening. I still have far too much of this ego stuff, but I'm making progress against it.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

@Skye2day, thanks for your wonderful input.

I love James "Deep Dude" Watkins, though I think he lets his ego get the best of him, at times. I understand his passion, but we should not use the tools of evil to combat evil.

Oh yes, Skye. My hub is 100% about belief in our Father. It is a play on words, yes, but it is meant to shake the cozy tree of the physicalist by making a pun which makes it look like they believe in God, too -- the Great Nothing. God is not Homo sapiens. He is not physical matter, for that can be destroyed. God doesn't even possess space and time, for these can be uncreated. Indeed, our loving Father is no thing.

And Skye, there is great beauty in the Bang, just as there is in mathematics, logic and all other forms of reason. But any tool used for ego (selfishness) takes on an evil intent. The tool is not evil, but the purpose behind it can sometimes be full of ego -- the master of this world.

One can easily explain the miracles in life. That in itself is a beautiful miracle, though an ordinary (physical) miracle. But one can also explain the extraordinary miracles -- walking on water, feeding the multitudes, parting the sea and wrestling with an angel. These can be explained, not by science, but by the mechanics of creation by which only God and his spiritual children can operate.

Remain humble, my dear Skye. Keep searching for Truth. Never sit by and think that you have made it, lest the Lord find you sleeping. I hunger for it more than the breath of life, but even I may not make it. I am still not worthy.

May God be with you always.


Cromper 5 years ago

I have never consciously hidden from god. How do you explain otherwise? Does god want me to contact him?


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Remote Viewing

I have a copy of the remote viewing course, actually. There are people still trying to do it and teach it. There were some reports that it did work.

Again, in the quantum world there is such a thing as entanglement. It is what quantum computing is based on. So there are possibilities there if it is an actual phenomenon. Bell said, and tightly so, that if entanglement was proven then all things are intimately connected in way we could never imagine. It was proven, so that may tell us something.

I can't say whether remote viewing is or is not real so it is speculation. I can also only speculate on how it might work if it is real.

Reincarnation is easy to build a model of. We might be reincarnating every day. That is to say that atoms leave our body system constantly. We have to replace them so we have to eat, so we bring in atoms from all kinds of systems. If they are encoded with information about their previous existence as another system our brains may be able to read some of that information and throw it up at us as a memory. It would seem as though it was our memory and thus that we had actually lived those memories.

There has been some suggestion that ghosts and hauntings are basically the same idea. Here a traumatic experience might actually be encoded in the material around an event. This is based on the same principal as a VCR or Audio tape. We encode sound and picture on ribbons of plastic with a metal flake coating and can play them back.

If the brain can project extreme trauma and that trauma is encoded on rock or drywall or wood or what ever, which are all possible mediums for encoding sound and picture, then an other human brain might be able to play it back.

Poltergeist type hauntings usually revolve around kids or teenagers who are troubled. I've had some experience with this phenomenon myself as I recount in one of my books.

So that is one possible natural answer.

You say that:"The problem with thinking that you're only a meat body is that you will never wake up with that attitude. The spirit will forever remain asleep despite the repeated incarnations."

I have an issue with the idea of being just a meat body in that matter and energy are the same thing in different form. The spiritualists often used to say that energy was spirit and material was just base and lifeless. But that's not the case at all. Really, all there is. is energy in different forms.

I'm not sure what evidence you might have for the belief that my soul or spirit is asleep. I would like to see your evidence that says I have a soul. So your entire view is speculative in that regard and anything you say about it is opinion.

I may well have a soul. But I have searched for it for years and never found evidence of it. So now I treat it as speculation until I get new information. No use believing something speculative.

So what you say might be true, but unless you show me why and how it is true I can only take it as being your opinion. Which is fine and interesting but doesn't really tell me much more than a thousand other models that say variations on the same thing.

As for eternal torture, I am only reporting what so many others believe, including obviously Sky2day. His or her words were: "I can only pray the non believer come to truth before the day of judgement. May God help them before that time."

This mythical day of judgement implies a day god will come and judge us and send some to heaven and some to hell for eternal punishment. I didn't make it up. It is not something I believe. I have no beliefs about it at all except that were it true the way they tell it I would probably not want to worship that kind of egomaniac.

Your version of god is much nicer but equally just your belief and not fact.

But you say that the bible is not meant to be easy to understand. Why not? If it was inspired by a real god I'm sure it have made it very easy to understand indeed.

However, it is very obvious why the bible is not easy to understand. It was written by a variety of primitive people over a long span of time and was influenced by politics more than a god. It is contradictory and can be used by anyone to make their particular point. Which is why it is really useless except as a way to look in to minds of the primitive people who were our ancestors.

For that it is invaluable.

"Arrogance closes the door to spiritual awakening. I still have far too much of this ego stuff, but I'm making progress against it."

There are many ways to get rid of ego. But you don't want to get rid of it all. Freud coined the idea of ego as consciousness, not as you mean it: the egotistic or selfish self that may think itself better than others.

You do want to get rid of that and one way to start is to not believe anything. Don't assume anything and don't don't believe speculative ideas. You have to be able to discern between speculation and fact. You can accept facts but believing them is redundant. So no need to believe anything or put faith in anything. In fact it leads you to sown the wrong path,

I cover this all in my "The Road To Becoming A Warrior" series of hubs.

But you don't want to get rid of ego or in it's true meaning consciousness. Because beyond that is nothing. Without ego ID which is the subconscious, can not be educated. So you end up this aware being, but without the ability to communicate. As far as I can tell no master has given up ego completely.


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper, me too!

Would a computer AI program necessarily know what its user was thinking?


Cromper 5 years ago

No, but the user could tell the AI program and add code to prove the user exists.

If God is extra-dimensional he would still be able to communicate with us in a 3D capacity. Just as we could interact with 2D beings if we created a 2D world (an AI program perhaps?).

This is the problem I have with religion (not the belief in a creator, though). To ask us to find god is like a cruel test. He must be having a laugh! I cannot see how anyone could justify his demands considering he is all powerful and eternal.

I have tried to answer the question myself in the past and the only possibilities are that god either does not have the capability to interact with us (meaning he has no control over his own creation), or he does not want to interact with us (meaning he is not really a loving god).

Now, at this point in past debates I've had, theists have tended to become all philosophical and use the distraction technique of opening their Bible and reading out some chapters. The Bible means nothing to me.

So any reasonable, down to earth explanation would be a good start.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

If the AI was really good it could figure out a lot about it's user by the input it provides, what it searches for, what the user makes it do. Heck if the user was on face book the program could know all about his family and maybe find out where it is and in what room of the house.

The point being real things interact with the world and leave a trail. Unreal things do nothing.

The reason for the christian god never showing up and seeming to hide is most probably due to it not existing. That's the reason so many excuses are made for it's absence or stringent conditions like belief to be sighted as a prerequisites for knowing it. That alone should give us a hint.

If we can't know something about something with out believing in it, it is probably in our heads. Why else would we have to believe in it?

If a god like the one the bible talks about wanted us to know it exists we would just know. It would be obvious. Whether we believed in it or not if it wanted to get through to us and say I'm here, surely it could do that in no uncertain terms? It could also counter any skepticism we have because it would know exactly how to prove to us individually that it exists.

I can't see making excuses for a god makes much sense.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, I appreciate your input. What you say stretches the mind; makes it think. I like that.

I don't doubt that all things are connected on many levels.

I understand your encoding idea. I wrote a science fiction story awhile back using the term "trace" as an encoded message imprinted on a space.

And yes, E=mc^2. I'm not one of those who thinks spirit is energy. Energy and matter require space-time continuity; spirit doesn't.

And Slarty, you're right. I have no evidence whatsoever.

The problem with developing one's spiritual abilities is that evidence (continuity-based reality) gets in the way if one relies on it for clues and cues. One needs to rely on spirit (discontinuity). Like a baby learning to walk, one just does it. And if one falls, one merely gets up again and keeps working at it.

The obvious danger to this is falling into delusion. There is a big difference between spiritual bliss and delusion. Spiritual bliss is grounded in reality, but not bound by it. That's the big distinction. True "faith" is similarly grounded in reality, and again, not bound by it. Opinion? Very possibly, but not entirely. This is based on a lifetime of experience and extrapolation from all inputs. Is my certainty a delusion? Most assuredly, part of it is, but part of it isn't. I haven't cracked the wall wide open, but I'd like to. And I am making progress. Will I make it all the way through in time? I hope so.

You can't pick up spirit like you can a hammer. While it is interesting that you have searched for your true self (soul), but haven't found it, that only means you haven't been looking the right way. Simple. Someone can try to make a new DVD player work (program it to do all the fancy stuff), but end up throwing the device away or selling it in a garage sale, because they didn't read the manual, or misunderstood its details. Oh, well!

Asleep? If a computer AI program were running and had never met its user, it might never know whether or not that user is asleep.

I'm interpreting biblical wisdom. I'm 100% certain that I don't have it all right. But I'm also equally certain that no one else I've read has it right, either.

I can understand your reticence in believing something speculative. If you've read "Einstein's Dreams," though, I'm sure you can understand the value in exploring possibilities -- holding a surrogate "belief" if only temporarily, while exploring the possibilities.

Not want to worship that kind of egomaniac? I understand completely. I read recently on someone else's forum about a biblical passage that seems appropriate, here -- Matthew 18. A master forgives his servant a gargantuan debt, but then later learns that the servant sent an associate to jail for a much smaller debt. The master was outraged that the servant he had forgiven could not also show some leniency. Talk about sticking your foot in your mouth. The once humble servant became cocky and arrogant once his debt was removed. But then he found that the debt returned. Oops! The point is that the decision is ours, not the master's. The ego is with the servant who cannot be generous.

Slarty, you said, "Your version of god is much nicer but equally just your belief and not fact." Not fact? Prove it! ;)

My point is that it is the best I can currently describe using our imperfect language, and my imperfect understanding.

Why would the Bible be purposely difficult to understand? I thought I already covered that subject, but let me try again.

My calculus professor in college made the subject challenging. It stretched the mind. If he had made it easy, would I have learned nearly as much? Perhaps not.

If Edmund Halley had rigidly thought that the stars in the sky were fixed, as Ptolemy and other ancients had claimed, he might never have published his findings that led to the principle of "proper motion." Such arrogance would have blinded him. He would have been stopped by a fixed idea -- a preconceived notion. Scientists still do this. It makes me groan every time they do. Humility is a much better attitude in the search for scientific as well as spiritual truth. Starting with "I don't know," and lightly holding onto the things you think you know, you can make all kinds of discoveries.

Continued...


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, continued...

Heck, it's discussions like this that keep me discovering, because ALL of my ideas are subject to change.

As I said before, humility is one of key ingredients for spiritual awakening. If one is humble in the search for answers in the Bible, then one is part-way there. Because of this, I have no doubt that a great deal of complexity has been woven into the Bible for this very reason.

You say that it is contradictory. Of course it is, if you take it literally. Like my VCR example, the user can misinterpret one instruction and completely not understand subsequent instructions because of it. Can't get it to work. Well, no wonder! Just because you (Slarty) can't figure it out, you dismiss the whole thing. That's understandable.

I've barely scratched the surface, but I've discovered some very interesting things. Like,

* A biblical timeline compatible with those of science. Puts Young Earth Creationists to shame.

* An undertanding of the seemingly outrageous longevity of the early patriarchs. The answer is so simple.

* An understanding for why God would give such incredible protection to a liar and murderer (Cain). The answer to this led to the discovery of the Kabbalah's "Tree of Life" embedded in Genesis.

* An understanding of the real reason behind Noah's Flood. The typical excuse doesn't cut it, because man has continued to be wicked and violent ever since the Flood. The Flood targeted one very specific activity and one very specific group. Clues come from the new biblical timeline, above, and from science.

So, Slarty, on the Bible, you're simply not trying hard enough. Not your bag? That's okay. But your implication that it is valueless, other than as a window onto primitive thought, may be wrong. Imagine that!

I'm not talking about Freudian "ego." I'm talking about Buddhist "ego." There is some overlap in meaning, but they are not exactly the same thing. This "ego" is the source of all selfishness and separateness from spiritual awareness. It is the source of that sense of entitlement in being right and frequently making others wrong. It is the attitude of the suicide perpetrator, but also of the Hitlers and Stalins of this world. It is the attitude of the banker who writes all the fine print so they can foreclose on more properties and resell them at an even greater profit. Every evil thing springs from this vulnerable, pseudo-self.

Because you have not found your "soul," giving up ego can seem a scary thing, indeed. Ego pretends that it is the only source of consciousness, and if you believe that, then there truly is no way out. And saying that you do not "believe" anything does not change the fact that you do believe something, even if it's only about ego and your enigmatic "soul."

Gautama Siddhartha gave up that false self and was able to communicate just fine -- from the spiritual self (fully-awakened spiritual consciousness). This is the whole meaning of the "everlasting life" of which the Nazarene teacher spoke. With spiritual awakening, the true self takes over the role as the seat of consciousness. And when the brain dies along with the rest of the body, consciousness continues, because of that reawakening. Without it, bodily death leaves the true spiritual self in limbo -- a perpetual nightmare that the Buddhists called the "bardo" (the between time).

And Yehoshua of Nazareth gave up that false self, too. Told it to "get behind me." That's how he was able to walk on water. Heck, he may even have created the storm before that famous event.

I've experienced similar miracles. My hub, "Anatomy of a Miracle" discusses one. I wouldn't mind getting your feedback on that.

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/Anatomy-of...

Quantum entanglement? That gives me some ideas for another science fiction story.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper, being a software engineer, I can appreciate your suggestion. I like what you're adding to the discussion.

And I agree with your hypothesis about being able to communicate with those who are not extra-dimensional.

Cruel test? I don't see it that way, but I had to laugh at the irony.

The way I currently see it, God wants His children to awaken, but He can't do it for them. They are gods, too. After all, they were created in His image.

Dazzling us with miracles and godly displays of His presence would actually defeat His purpose in having us awaken. You see, selfishness (Buddhist meaning of ego) gets in the way. For example, ego wants to take credit for the miracles I've created, but ego (being a physical universe construct) can't do squat in that arena.

If someone is trapped in a deep mine shaft, and needs to reach up to grab the rope to get out, it's up to them to grab it. Putting on a light show would only distract from the rope.

Your limited answers are just that: limited. You just haven't searched hard enough. Maybe next lifetime?

And I can understand your aversion to biblical answers. I had the same feeling most of my life, because they were used without understanding. My Southern Baptist minister grandfather was no different; he lacked understanding and merely towed the ideological line. That's my opinion, anyway.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, I understand what you're saying, and I even think I understand where you're coming from.

On the AI example, you're assuming that such access to the user input is available. Not a good assumption.

Regarding your statement, "...real things interact with the world and leave a trail. Unreal things do nothing," again you're assuming way too much.

Could there be a reason why someone doesn't contact us? Doesn't show themselves? I can think of a few. I've even mentioned one.

If ego-selfishness is the reason our spiritual self is asleep, and if ego-selfishness feeds on "proof," then giving proof would defeat the purpose of spiritual awakening. Simple. It's that simple. So, keep on believing in the need for proof.

If a "believer" was about to mix two chemicals on faith, I'd likely knock their block off and then attempt to find out what the chemicals were. My chemistry math is a bit rusty, but I'd brush up and figure out what the reaction should be -- endothermic or exothermic, poison gas or benign precipitate.

I understand your logic about "if a god... wanted us to know it exists," but you miss the bigger picture. Much more is at stake than a popularity contest or a "guess who's coming to dinner" quiz.

I don't seriously think I'll change your mind. But I appreciate the discussion, because I get a better look at these things from a new perspective. I thank you for that, Slarty.

One thing I do have certainty on is that I am a spiritual being and not this Homo sapiens body. I also have certainty on the difference between belief and faith (100% confidence). I'm talking the viewpoint needed to walk on water. Belief won't cut it.

So, all your talk about belief is misguided. Belief only leaves you in the realm of physical continuity. At ninety degrees from space-time, you have the realm of creation which is a discontinuity. (Did you ever study calculus? You'll know what I'm talking about.) This is the realm of faith (perfect confidence). Such confidence isn't the mortal, physical kind, because that is tainted with varying degrees of doubt. That's why scientists can never get such things as remote viewing to work. That is painfully, absurdly obvious to me. They're pissing on the fire they're attempting to study. Skepticism will do that. Not very bright, but scientists don't understand everything. And if they come to a field of study with the preconceived notion that it's all bogus, then they'll discover nothing! And that's an ironic joke.

Excuses? Any analogy I can come up with in an attempt to explain my viewpoint can easily be taken apart and countered. If one chooses not to understand, then lack of understanding will be the result. It's that simple. It's a matter of decision.

More later, guys. Now I've got to get some work done.

Thanks!


skye 5 years ago

Brother Praise God I see now. OK needed a bit more clarity there is no doubt I was led this Glorious am to your comment back to me. I am touched and honored to know you. I keep seeking and long more for Christ each day. I am amazed at HIS POWER HE paid on the Cross so His Children could live in HIS BLESSING.

Keep soaring on those wings of the eagle lone77star. Keep handing the fresh water of Jesus Christ. U will, me to!! Phil 4:13. You have an annointing on you to write as you do. Glory to God Brother. Love ya your sis in Christ. Jesus Come SOON. Hugs.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

>I'm not one of those who thinks spirit is energy. Energy and matter require space-time >continuity; spirit doesn't.

I'm not sure that energy does either.

>The problem with developing one's spiritual abilities is that evidence (continuity-based >reality) gets in the way if one relies on it for clues and cues. One needs to rely on >spirit (discontinuity). Like a baby learning to walk, one just does it. And if one falls, >one merely gets up again and keeps working at it.

So I am told but I don't buy it.

>The obvious danger to this is falling into delusion.

My point entirely.

>There is a big difference between spiritual bliss and delusion. Spiritual bliss is >grounded in reality, but not bound by it. That's the big distinction.

When one experiences bliss, it is bliss. How can a feeling be delusion? Only your interpretation of why you experienced it can be wrong or delusional. That is where the distinction is. Your interpretation of an experience may be grounded in reality or delusion, but an experience is just an experience.

>True "faith" is similarly grounded in reality, and again, not bound by it. Opinion? Very >possibly, but not entirely.

If faith is not bound by reality then the alternative is that it is bound by imagination or delusion. What else is there? The opposite of reality is fiction.

>This is based on a lifetime of experience and extrapolation from all inputs. Is my >certainty a delusion? Most assuredly, part of it is, but part of it isn't. I haven't >cracked the wall wide open, but I'd like to. And I am making progress. Will I make it all >the way through in time? I hope so.

The part that is not at least, you should then have evidence for. Again. I never question experience, only the interpretation of it.

>You can't pick up spirit like you can a hammer.

I thought I had it whether I want it or not?

> While it is interesting that you have searched for your true self (soul), but haven't >found it, that only means you haven't been looking the right way. Simple. Someone can try >to make a new DVD player work (program it to do all the fancy stuff), but end up throwing >the device away or selling it in a garage sale, because they didn't read the manual, or >misunderstood its details. Oh, well!

With all respect you have no idea what I have tried or experienced. I reject this constant claim that if I can't find god I am not looking hard enough or if I can't find soul I haven't gone about it the right way. It seems like too convenient an out for the fact that I have experienced what many people would love to experience and didn't find the same things in it others have.

>Asleep? If a computer AI program were running and had never met its user, it might never >know whether or not that user is asleep.

It meets it's user every day through their interactions.

>I'm interpreting biblical wisdom. I'm 100% certain that I don't have it all right. But I'm >also equally certain that no one else I've read has it right, either.

I think the problem is you can read it any way you like and get out of it what you like.

>I can understand your reticence in believing something speculative. If you've read >"Einstein's Dreams," though, I'm sure you can understand the value in exploring >possibilities -- holding a surrogate "belief" if only temporarily, while exploring the >possibilities.

I love speculation. I just make sure not to assign it more meaning than it has. I also make sure not to see it as fact, which is what you are suggesting. I see no reason to have faith that a speculative idea of mine is reality even for a second. That is not required. All I have to do is wait and see. New information will come in eventually to either back the hypothesis or falsify it. That's what science does.

>Not want to worship that kind of egomaniac? I understand completely. I read recently on >someone else's forum about a biblical passage that seems appropriate, here -- Matthew 18. >A master forgives his servant a gargantuan debt, but then later learns that the servant >sent an associate to jail for a much smaller debt. The master was outraged that the >servant he had forgiven could not also show some leniency. Talk about sticking your foot >in your mouth. The once humble servant became cocky and arrogant once his debt was >removed. But then he found that the debt returned. Oops! The point is that the decision is >ours, not the master's. The ego is with the servant who cannot be generous.

Interesting story. But it is hardly relevant. In my story the master, if he exists the way some Christians see him, is an egomaniac that threatens hell to those that do not believe it exists. How is your story relevant? My not knowing it exists has nothing to do with my ego, it has to fo with it's absence. My belief that it exists or not is irrelevant.

>Slarty, you said, "Your version of god is much nicer but equally just your belief and not >fact." Not fact? Prove it! ;)

I should have been more specific. The fact that you have no evidence for it shows it to be speculative, so in that since not a "known" fact. Therefore telling me about it as if it is fact would not be true. It may be true, but that remains to be seen. It remains to be seen whether any god exists, your version or any one else’s.

>My calculus professor in college made the subject challenging. It stretched the mind. If >he had made it easy, would I have learned nearly as much? Perhaps not.

Taking that example, we are all different. One method may work for you but not for me. So why would a god choose just one knowing not everyone will respond to it the same way? And this is not calculus for goodness sake, it is simply a matter of making itself known to us. How hard can that be for a god? And it needs all these devices and theatrics? Again, to me these are just excuses for its absence.

>If Edmund Halley had rigidly thought that the stars in the sky were fixed, as Ptolemy and >other ancients had claimed, he might never have published his findings that led to the >principle of "proper motion." Such arrogance would have blinded him. He would have been >stopped by a fixed idea -- a preconceived notion. Scientists still do this. It makes me >groan every time they do. Humility is a much better attitude in the search for scientific >as well as spiritual truth. Starting with "I don't know," and lightly holding onto the >things you think you know, you can make all kinds of discoveries.

But you are making my point for me. I'm saying I do not if there if there is a god or a soul so I lack belief that there is. Just like he lacked belief that the stars were fixed.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

>Heck, it's discussions like this that keep me discovering, because ALL of my ideas are

>subject to change.

Couldn't agree more.

>As I said before, humility is one of key ingredients for spiritual awakening. If one is

>humble in the search for answers in the Bible, then one is part-way there. Because of

>this, I have no doubt that a great deal of complexity has been woven into the Bible for

>this very reason.

Humility is a very good practice. And part of the reason to have it is because things are

so complex. But of course I don't think that is why the bible is contradictory and complex.

>You say that it is contradictory. Of course it is, if you take it literally.

If you do not then you interpret it and everyone and his grandmother has a novel

interpretation every day, Thereason they have to interpret it is because it is

contradictory and at times flys in the face of what people expect it to say.

>Like my VCR example, the user can misinterpret one instruction and completely not

>understand subsequent instructions because of it. Can't get it to work. Well, no wonder!

>Just because you (Slarty) can't figure it out, you dismiss the whole thing. That's

>understandable.

But perhaps there is nothing to understand? That might be possible too, eh? Or perhaps I do

understand it and you are reading into it what you want it to say, which is perfectly

posssibvle because anyone can make it say what they like, which is why it is of little real

value to me.

Unlike a VCR which others do know how to program and all you need do is ask for help, no

one can give you definitive answer when it comes to the bible. So you read it as it is or

you make up stuff to suit what you want it to mean. Even the fundies do that. They are not

reading it as it is contrary to what they may tell you.

>So, Slarty, on the Bible, you're simply not trying hard enough. Not your bag? That's okay.

>But your implication that it is valueless, other than as a window onto primitive thought,

>may be wrong. Imagine that!

I may be. But no one is ever going to actually find out one way or the other unless a god

comes down and tells us about it. I can imagin it just fine. But is it true?

>I'm not talking about Freudian "ego." I'm talking about Buddhist "ego." There is some

overlap in meaning, but they are not exactly the same thing. This "ego" is the source of

all selfishness and separateness from spiritual awareness. It is the source of that sense

of entitlement in being right and frequently making others wrong. It is the attitude of the

suicide perpetrator, but also of the Hitlers and Stalins of this world. It is the attitude

of the banker who writes all the fine print so they can foreclose on more properties and

resell them at an even greater profit. Every evil thing springs from this vulnerable,

>pseudo-self.

And yet you still fo not see that taking on a practice of lack of belief and lack of faith

goes farther tward to that goal than believing in what you want to believe in because it is

much nicer than what others believe it? Faith fosters this idea that I am right and you are

wrong, and worse, it gives the faithful a false sense of certainty and conviction.

>Because you have not found your "soul," giving up ego can seem a scary thing,

No. When I did it as a youth I gave up ego to the point where I no longer recognized myself

in a mirror and couldn't idenitfy with the image at all. I went farther than most are

willing to go and found a whole lot of nothing. I am not alone. Others like U.G

Krishnamirti experienced the same thing.

I attained great states of non-thought, out of body experience, states of just knowing

without judging. States of bliss. But Iwanted ego gon completely. When you attain that, as

U.G says, everything man has said or known is stripped away and nothing is put in its

place. Nothing.

Perhaps I can be accused of having gone to far. But never of being scared of trying.

> indeed. Ego pretends that it is the only source of consciousness, and if you believe

that, then there truly is no way out. And saying that you do not "believe" anything does

not change the fact that you do believe something, even if it's only about ego and your

enigmatic "soul."

The ID is the subconscious and it is awareness. Awareness is a form of consciousness.

Consciousness itself is there to teach the awareness. Our responces are too slow if we

think aboutthem so we have to educate the instinctive,

>And Yehoshua of Nazareth gave up that false self, too. Told it to "get behind me." That's

>how he was able to walk on water. Heck, he may even have created the storm before that

>famous event.

An event that islikely just myth. But who's to say. The point being that giving examples of

things that may or may not have happened doesn't really tell us much.

>I've experienced similar miracles. My hub, "Anatomy of a Miracle" discusses one. I

wouldn't mind getting your feedback on that.

I certainly will read it. I think I have but I'll take another look. I read a lot of your

hubs and though I don't agree with some of what you say I enjoy them. I do not always

comment because I don't want to impose my ideas on your hubs.

.

>On the AI example, you're assuming that such access to the user input is available. Not a

>good assumption.

The info is all there. It depends on how good the AI is at finding it.

>Regarding your statement, "...real things interact with the world and leave a trail.

U>nreal things do nothing," again you're assuming way too much.

What am I assuming and can you give me an example of something we can both agree is real

that we can not detect in some way? Or something not real that actually interact with the

world? I don't mean an idea that you put in to effect by interacting with the world but

rather something that does not exist that interacts with the world on it's own.

>Could there be a reason why someone doesn't contact us? Doesn't show themselves? I can

>think of a few. I've even mentioned one.

It does not want to, it can't, or it does not exist.

>If ego-selfishness is the reason our spiritual self is asleep, and if ego-selfishness

>feeds on "proof," then giving proof would defeat the purpose of spiritual awakening.

>Simple. It's that simple. So, keep on believing in the need for proof.

This reminds me of the Emprors new clothes. The Emperor is naked but everyone is fed the

line that if they can't see the magnificent cloth then they are stupid or blind or just

plain ignorant. To me that's what one is aying when they say ego and selfishness is what

demands proof. Proof is evil all of a sudden. Sorry. Doesn't wash. The Emporer is naked.

>I understand your logic about "if a god... wanted us to know it exists," but you miss the

bigger picture. Much more is at stake than a popularity contest or a "guess who's coming to

dinner" quiz.

I don't seriously think I'll change your mind. But I appreciate the discussion, because I

>get a better look at these things from a new perspective. I thank you for that, Slarty.

Nothing is at stake and it is not about a popularity contest. It is about a god that could make life simple by just being present without all these games. If he wants believers then he should show his face to us all and convince us, Simple. Everything else is theatrics, excuses and speculation.

The main agrument of the christian is that god does not want robots. What a load of nonsense. How does nknowing a god exists turn you into a robot? No matter what the excuse for an absent god it is an excuse because if it does not show up no one knows. So until it does, I lack belief that it exists. Lack of belief is not belief of lack which just as untenable. To me a god is speculative and so ar souls. I hold no belief about them and accept the fact that they are speculation.

Thank you for letting me get my two sents in and learing about your reasons for what you believe.

>One thing I do have certainty on is that I am a spiritual being and not this Homo sapiens

body. I also have certainty on the difference betwe


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

Sorry for not spell checking that last one. Hope it is not unreadable.

>One thing I do have certainty on is that I am a spiritual being and not this Homo sapiens body. I also have certainty on the difference between belief and faith (100% >confidence). I'm talking the viewpoint needed to walk on >water. Belief won't cut it.

Neither will confidence. You will attain that ability or you will not. Good luck with it. ;)

>So, all your talk about belief is misguided. Belief only >leaves you in the realm of physical continuity.

I advocate lack of belief so you are preaching to the converted. lol...

>Excuses? Any analogy I can come up with in an attempt to explain my viewpoint can easily be taken apart and countered. If one chooses not to understand, then lack of understanding >will be the result. It's that simple. It's a matter of >decision.

My decision is to lack belief that you are correct until I have evidence to show you are correct. Until then I store it away as interesting speculation.


Cromper 5 years ago

Lonestar (I hope you don't mind me omitting the 7s),

I'm afraid my programming knowledge is limited to Perl CGI and Actionscript for Flash (I used to design websites as you can probably tell). I've mastered Perl, but still have trouble connecting my scripts to SQL databases so I tended to take the lazy route and use the old flat-file method!

Anyway, back to your reply;

"Dazzling us with miracles and godly displays of His presence would actually defeat His purpose in having us awaken."

You're talking with a religious tongue, but I know what you are implying; that we are born into sin and need to learn the error of our ways and prepare ourselves for heaven.

I suggested to you that god is hiding from us and you firmly denied this. But the only way god can work his desire of our self-awakening, according to the above quotation, is to remain scarce, or out of sight. That is a contradiction.

Also, the above quotation is disingenuous to the point of being almost facetious. I wasn't asking for god to show himself to me. I was asking for a mere clue, or hint. You obviously have never considered how god could prove his existence without giving away the secret to the magic. The Bible would be a start.

There is nothing written in the Bible that could not have been written by anyone at that time in history. As the Bible is claimed to be the word of god, all it would take is a piece of information that could not possibly have been known 2000 years ago, but is verified later in time.

Don't talk to me about the prophecies of the Old Testament, because this is a book, and the written word can be fabricated as easily as making a cup of tea (thinking of which...).

How about references to DNA? Blue-shift and red-shift? How diseases can spread (now that WOULD be useful, and VERY god-like).

I'm not asking for much here Lonestar. And I dare you to accuse me of being unreasonable in my requests!

If I get sent to hell for my disbelief in god, then I will be smugly satisfied that at least I do not have to spend the rest of eternity with 'Him', who seems to demand worship

You talk about 'ego' a lot. Yes, I am detecting a lot of ego here, and you seem to be passing it around the discussion like 'pass-the-parcel' but it always seems to end up in your lap.

As for religion; it's a case of 'believe now, ask questions later'. That is grossly unreasonable!


Hiccups profile image

Hiccups 5 years ago from Boston

Getting back to the article, i love the idea of nothing. I think the void is a beautiful concept for humans to even conceive of. Once you wade through must of the allegorical religious myths you come to some basic things that don't change, even throughout the many beliefs that different cultures develop through time. From what we came from to where we are going could be thought of as the void. However i believe that in absolute nothing lies the potential for all. We pull that potential out of the void and manifest it here, usually driven by need & desire. Powerful stuff when you step far enough back to see it clearly.

nice post!


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Thank you, Skye. Beautiful words. Thank you!


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, on the subject of spirit not possessing space-time, you responded, "I'm not sure that energy does either."

Now that is an interesting idea. Something about it scratches an itch somewhere. I'll have to think more on it. But from my current understanding, energy persists, so it has the time dimension. But space? I don't know, yet. I know that light traveling at its gargantuan pace may not have time, because at the speed of light, per Einstein's relativity, time stands still. Perhaps energy has apparent persistence from the viewpoint of someone at sublight speed, but at "c" that dimension ceases to exist. Thanks, Slarty!

I remember reading somewhere in some philophical text that light does not travel. This was written a couple of decades before Einstein published his most famous work. I believe that work also said that gravity comes before matter, not the other way around.

The remainder of your points are beautifully delicious, too. Wonderful analysis and speculation.

I hope we do more of it.


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada

A pleasure as always. :)

What I meant was that theoretically in the singularity before the big bang all the energy that now exists in this universe was in an almost infinitely compressed state. In fact the singularity would have been that compressed energy. Only in expanding did it create space/time. Some like to say it was in the form of potential energy.

Again, I am not saying a big bang happened as a known fact. Just that if it is true then energy seems to not be tied to time or space, but rather time and space is tied to energy.

Thanks for another good discussion. You have a great day


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Hi Cromper. No problem omitting the 7's. When I created my first ID on another website, "LoneStar" was unavailable. I started to use LoneStar77, but then I ran into one website that already had a LoneStar77, so I switched to my current moniker.

Computer Programming:

Perl, wow! I learned a little of that on my last job, but didn't have time to use it. I had similar problems connecting to databases with PHP and Visual Basic. For my great love, astronomy, I created a 3D program called "Stars in the NeighborHood," and opted for flat files. It seemed faster than a database connection, but I never explored methods for optimization of that connection.

Religion and Spirituality:

Religious tongue? I suppose I am, but not any denomination I've ever heard of. As far as I know, my denomination has a population of one.

Born into sin? I suppose one could say that. But what would you say to us being the original sinners; i.e. we are Adam and Eve -- the fallen angels of which Milton wrote?

Contradiction?

I can see how you would see it as such. From your viewpoint and opinion set (sub-routines), such an opinion is inevitable. But try to see it from a different point-of-view. God is not hiding, but merely waiting in plain sight (spiritual sight), waiting for us to make the first move.

A parent can forcefully move the feet of their infant in a walking pattern, but that won't accomplish the infant learning to walk. If the infant moves their own feet, then they start to learn. Do you now see my distinction?

Insults or Misunderstanding

Disingenuous? Facetious? Perhaps what I said was too poor an attempt to explain. My apologies. Let me try again.

You're asking for a clue or hint -- a sign that God exists, right? You said earlier that God is either incapable of interacting or doesn't want to interact. The clue or hint you seek is exactly what I was talking about. My dear Cromper, I was being entirely sincere. Any such hint would be an interference with our learning to walk on our own. I don't know how to say it any more plainly. Now, if you ponder this idea and what I've said, you may come to an understanding that does not seem disingenuous or facetious, but I'll have to let you do that work. I can't do it for you. (Hint, hint)

You say that I "obviously have never considered." Wow, Cromper. Not very logical for someone who has worked as a programmer. You merely have not considered the possible realities that would allow me to have considered a way for God to show himself without giving away the secret to the magic. But that's not the point. God could display great miracles without revealing how it is done. The point is not that we might discover how to do it (and I already have). The point is that ego gets into the mix and messes up the spiritual awakening. Ego is the original sin. That is what you (Cromper) and I (LoneStar) decided when we turned away from spiritual awareness and decided to use physical awareness. That's my current hypothesis, based on a lot of magic and experience, plus extrapolating from what the Bible might possibly mean. And what other religious texts might mean, like the teachings of Buddha and Lao Tsu.

Biblical verification? Interesting subject. I'll come back to that in a moment.

Don't talk to you about prophecies?

Wow, Cromper. Don't get rowdy, now. Or do you really want to end the conversation? ;)

I can only find the letters "prophec-" in one location on this web page, and yours is it. I don't know where you get the idea that I was talking about biblical prophecy. (Did you dream it? Or was it in your tea?)

Continued...


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper, continued here...

Dare to Accuse?

You "dare" me to "accuse" you? Really? Is that what you want? Do I detect some more hostility? I think the conversation can be made without it. What do you say?

As a matter of fact, your requests are quite "reasonable." But being reasonable is not always the best stance to take. Many an invention or goal was thought to be "unreasonable." But that didn't stop Edison or Einstein. But you have some fixed ideas that prevent you from seeing alternate meanings.

God demands? Does He really?

Wow, Cromper. You seem to have such resentment. I hope you can find someway out of that. You say that God demands worship? Hmmm-m-m, I wonder. Perhaps that's merely your misunderstanding. You seem to understand so much, but miss out on so much else. Holding onto a fixed idea will do that. It makes some things impossible to understand. The solution is to let go of the fixed ideas.

Wouldn't any father love for their son to love them back and to show respect? Well, I know there are exceptions to this. But ideally? What's wrong with that? Did someone beat you when you were a child? I don't mean to get personal, and you don't have to answer that, but I detect some unreasonable hostility in what you say.

Ah, What a Lovely Ego!

You detect ego? I wonder if you really know what that is. What, for instance, is the difference between confidence and ego? Can they overlap? You gave a very poetic description of ego landing in my lap. I know too well that ego still runs through much of my work. I have not yet found my cure. Any discussion is in danger of eliciting ego. But there is great value in pointing out the dangers of ego. I've been as guilty as everyone else in this original sin. That you seem to direct all of the ego attention back to me is flattering, but inaccurate.

You say, "As for religion; it's a case of 'believe now, ask questions later'. That is grossly unreasonable!"

And I say, absolutely right! Being unreasonable is the best thing to be when it comes to ego and spirit. Try to understand that, then you too can pick yourself up by your own spiritual bootstraps (kind of like a computer reboot), and no longer remain trapped in the subroutines of the physical -- to rise up and become the "user" rather than the "program."

Biblical proof? I said I'd come back to that. The timeline I discovered in Genesis is quite simple and intuitively related to the clues which led to its discovery. It puts earliest humanity (Adam) at 10,434,130 BC. Perhaps some day anthropologists, if they are true to science and not their fixed ideas, may discover Homo sapiens bones that old. That might be an interesting proof.

The great Flood of Noah occurred 27,970 BC according to this same timeline. Will scientists find saltwater residue at this date in the GISP2 ice cores? That would be interesting proof, too. And the date is hauntingly similar to the death of one species -- a species that may well have been the "daughters" mentioned in Genesis 6. That species and their half-human offspring may have been the target of the flood, whatever it was in reality. But the purpose was not to wipe out humanity because of some ordinary wickedness or violence, but a very special wickedness which would have thwarted God's purpose and prevented the formation of civilization.

And what would we do without civilization? Wailing and gnashing of teeth -- victim-perpetrator, blood feuds, and all kinds of "reason" to hold onto the sources of resentment. Not a pretty picture. Thank goodness for the Flood.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Hiccups, wow! Your comment gives me goosebumps. I seem to be getting a lot of them lately. Lovely stuff!

Sounds downright Zen! And possibly far more accurate than any more concrete, human-language description.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Slarty, I appreciate the clarification on the Big Bang and energy. Nice stuff.


Cromper 5 years ago

Appologies if I came across as hostile. I was being 'firm'. While I was writing I was preempting your response.

If I could see into your mind I would understand your view completely, and vice versa. I do understand why you believe in the spiritual world (I hope that term isn't insulting) as I used to believe there was a possibility that it existed. I attended church and Sunday school as a kid and later on in my late teens.

I realised over time that I was trying to convince myself that God existed rather than actually believing, because the social benefits of attending church are very attractive and there was something in it for me but which had nothing to do with God.

So, I began to play around with the idea that I should start again, clear my mind, and see if I could come up with a fresh idea of who or what a god is. I felt I owed it to myself to take a look from MY perspective. Rather than take already established ideas of what a god is, I let my own judgement 'evolve' a picture in my mind.

Do you know what I came up with? Someone like myself! Someone who is happy with everyone doing their own thing, with respect for those who stand up for themselves, even for those who are mischieveous in a harmless way.

I expect a god to do unto me as I would do unto others. If god does not agree with what I judge to be right and wrong, then I would rather not associate myself with him. And if that in turn means that I go to hell then I'm sure you will agree I was justified in my decision to not want to be a part of his family.

Now, I know you understand what I'm saying, and I'm also sure you would not send me to hell if you had the power simply because I sincerely believe you to be a good person.

So the question is; why does God have a difficulty with this?


Cromper 5 years ago

cont...

My father is an amateur astronomer (I wasn't abused as a kid, by the way :)) so I was brought up with looking out into space. He currently has 2 reflectors (14" mirrors I think) and one refractor. I keep asking him for the refractor because he never uses it any more, but he is still protective over it, so I have no chance.

My family are not religious at all (I went to church with my friends who lived next door) so I was a 'clean slate' I suppose. My mother didn't like me going to church but she never stopped me.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper, I'm sorry for the delay in answering. It's been a long week.

I understand what you say, and no apology necessary. You explained it beautifully. I appreciate it when someone helps me be aware of my own "over-the-top" approach. And I do sometimes do that. ;)

I agree that in reading each others' minds we would find a lot of understanding and a lot to understand.

Sounds like a beautiful journey you've been on. One of self-discovery and a quest for answers of some kind. I've had my own quest from a mixed family (grandfather was a Southern Baptist minister; father was a student of Eastern philosophy). I studied Christianity, Scientology, Buddhism, Judaism, Kabbalah, Taoism and then Christianity. I'm currently a member of a denomination of one.

My current viewpoint is that God is a being of love. If indeed we were created in His image, then we are baby gods wrapped in Homo sapiens flesh. But we're sound asleep -- dead to the spiritual.

Any parent would want their children back. Any good parent would go to great lengths to accomplish that. I suspect that the efforts to awaken us spiritually have been going on for millions of years -- at least ten million, if my analysis of Genesis is right.

If God were a vengeful, spiteful ole cuss, I wouldn't want to be a part of that game, either. I would quietly live out my life, enjoying it to the max, and helping others as I can, just because it feels good; and then that would be it. But the miracles I've experienced are far too interesting, and the spiritual nature of myself that I've found evidence for just won't go away. Everything points to a loving God and all of the "hell fire and brimstone" my grandfather preached in his church is just so much bullstuff.

But the "hell" that people get in such a fuss over I suspect is something as simple as a personal decision; not a spiritual parent's "wrath."

Where some so-called Christian says "God will punish you in hell," I see merely the product of someone's decision. Like, if someone steps off a 20-story building, they go splat. That's "God punishing them." God created the physical laws (gravity, inertia, solidity, impact); the person created the decision to ignore them. Bam! Simple.

If a person continually turns their back on spirituality, then they may eventually lose all chance at awakening. I don't know. I'm only guessing. But let's look at an analogy (imperfect, but what the heck).

A parent finds out that their child has fallen into a well. They go to rescue them, but the child refuses to come out. When anyone goes down to get them, the child shouts, screams, kicks and lashes out to prevent their rescue. Then, during one rescue attempt, the child kills the rescuer. The insults of the child persist. The child has disowned their parent and wants nothing to do with them. They act as though the parent doesn't exist.

Say the rescue attempts go on for decades, but the child, now full-grown, refuses to participate.

Where would anyone in their right mind draw the line? I suspect that judgement day is a bit like the line beyond which all attempts at rescue will cease. Heck, it works in marketing. Buy now! For a limited time only! As crass as that sounds, it works. Sometimes we humans need a swift kick to get us moving.

But say that in our analogy all attempts stop. The child may think. Great! Good riddence.

From my own current understand, I doubt God would have any difficulty with the image you portrayed, but my own understanding is still quite limited. Even if God did have a disagreement, it would likely be the kind of disagreement of the parent trying to rescue their child out of the well. They would disagree with the attitude of the child and their insistence on ignoring their parent, but all the while the parent would love their child, unconditionally.

Cromper, thanks for discussing this. It helps me get a better look at this. It helps me explore all of the issues from my current viewpoint. And I might have already indicated, my viewpoint keeps changing. The quest for answers is a long one, and with humility new clues make it easy to change my mind. Any good scientist does this.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Cromper (continued...)

14" !?? Wow! I have a refractor. It's not much -- about 3" aperture. I have long lusted after a 14" reflector Schmidt-Cassegrain configuration or similar. I've even looked at the 20" Meade and wondered what I'd do with my first bestseller (fiction or non-fiction). Would I be able to purchase such a beautiful scope. Where I live in the Philippines, the viewing is terrible most nights (too cloudy or hazy). But seeing Alpha Centauri was quite a thrill, even with my binoculars. I've entertained the fantasy of buying land in Chile or Peru, parking my superscope there and hiring someone to look after it, using electronic imaging, transmitted over the internet to keep track of my research into double star orbital parameters and spectroscopic analysis of individual stars. But I currently have other priorities. I sure hope I have another 60+ years at my disposal.

Cromper, I like your analysis and your thought process. Keep searching for answers. I still am.


Cromper 5 years ago

Lonestar,

I listen to a lot of sermons given by pastors in the US on digital radio Premier Christian, and a lot of the subjects include God's (or Jesus's) attempts to connect with us.

In one particular speech I remember, the pastor (can't remember who but I think it was Chuck Swindoll) was repeatedly saying 'Jesus is knocking' whilst knocking on his podium. 'He's waiting for you to open the door'.

It's a very persuasive way of getting a person to climb on board the train, even if that person is still confused, and it's a skill that a lot of these preachers possess; to bend the mind into convincing itself that it is missing something and to trust what the preacher is claiming.

I too have witnessed many "miracles" throughout my life (although nowhere near any biblical scale), but it is usually just a matter of coincidence and luck rather than a divine intervention.

As I said before, I emptied my mind of all previous religious knowledge in an attempt to let a god or creator in. That was back in the late 80's and I am still waiting.

I have just returned from a long weekend with the girlfriend in which we went to a wedding at a church in a part of Nottingham called Arnold. We sang 4 hymns (2 of which I didn't even know) and said prayers. You would have been proud of me! Hee hee.


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Howdy Cromper.

Your description of charisma is intriguing. Some people use such a talent for good, while some do not. Hitler had a certain charisma. Some evangelists have charisma, but also pride. It's hard to teach without any pride.

And your "miracles" sound like the "ordinary" or "accidental" coincidence variety. Those are pretty common. But the "cause-and-effect" coincidence variety are decidedly far more rare. It's possible that you could be unrighteous and perform such acts of "magic," like the serpent priests of Egypt in the story of Moses and Aaron, but you'd be missing out on the real purpose of performing such miracles -- that of reawakening the true self and preparing for the end of days. Once the lights go out, it's too late to prepare. And it looks as though things are getting ready for the shakedown.

I understand what you say about wiping your slate clean and waiting for God, but He doesn't reveal himself to those who only wait. He reveals himself to those who purify themselves and anxiously expect Him.

There might have been a time when I would've considered being proud of you, but pride is unclean. It energizes the ego (the created pseudo-self and source of all evil). I still struggle with my own pride.

Those who go to church to be seen as a church-goer are unclean, as well. It all has to do with selfishness. There are many levels of uncleanness. Hitler and Stalin may have been at one end. The little old granny who goes to church, but wouldn't be caught dead talking to an ex-convict or a prostitute, is at the other end of uncleanness. Her lack of compassion darkens her heart.


Cromper 5 years ago

Ayup lonestar,

I am intrigued to know more about your miracle experiences.

And as for church last Saturday, please don't be mistaken. I was not sucking up to God (how can I sing and pray to something that doesn't exist?), I was merely going through the actions to appease the masses.

"I understand what you say about wiping your slate clean and waiting for God, but He doesn't reveal himself to those who only wait. He reveals himself to those who purify themselves and anxiously expect Him."

Again, this requires an acceptance of His existence before He appears and allays my doubts. I cannot follow this kind of belief system and never will.

I respect your approach to religion, but you don't come to me with any refreshing philosophies or new ways of thinking.

Believe now, ask questions later. In every other walk of life this approach would be unreasonable. You need to give a straight-forward reason why I should believe now without question.

Why should I buy the goods before I see them?


lone77star profile image

lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/Anatomy-of...

That covers one and perhaps the most "remarkable" miracle.

Cromper, how could I be mistaken? You've made your viewpoint very clear.

Why should you buy the goods before you see them? Why indeed! Don't!

Unreasonable? Absolutely! Faith is not something that a scientist is likely to use, partly because true faith is not an easy state to achieve and is so easily confused with "blind belief." And "skepticism," which includes the bias of doubt, is to faith and creation what water is to the study of flame; it dowses the flame with water and then there's nothing to study.

Such blind belief (failed attempt at faith) in a laboratory could get you killed. But true faith could turn water into wine, aqua regia into orange sodapop, and allow one to walk on water or to part the sea. Faith is unreasonable by its very nature. Reason only gets in the way, because faith is not "effect," but "cause." Faith is infinitely far above reason. Faith is the source of those things about which we reason; faith is creation.

One movie I saw when I was very young left a lasting impression on me -- "The Silver Chalice" (1954). In it, an evil guy, Simon the Magician (Jack Palance) thought he had purchased the secrets of the apostles and went about proving it to a crowd of onlookers. He walked to the top of a tower and "flew" to the ground, but not quite the way he had intended. He lacked "true faith." Heck, so do I most of the time. That requires utter humility, and I'm still fighting a bad case of ego.

At my tender age, I wondered at Simon's foolishness. He could have proved his "faith" by merely flying from the ground to the top of the tower. That way, the only chance of going splat would be if his "faith" starts out working, but fails somewhere before his arrival. That seemed safer to me. But faith does not work like that. You cannot gain faith by seeing proof. That's why all this religion "mumbo-jumbo" seems so counterintuitive to someone who relies so much on reason.

In software engineering, reason is essential. Faith would change the rules of the game, and reason and science don't like it when the rules change; they depend upon continuity.

Proof is a physical universe artifact of continuity. Faith is discontinuous by its nature; and that's why reason does not work with faith. Reason is also continuity-based.

Nothing new? Cromper, I've never seen this material that I've discovered anywhere else. If it is not "new" to you, then perhaps you're not looking closely enough. The mechanics of creation I stumbled upon nearly forty years ago I only recently discovered in Genesis. Surprising to find it in something I had read so many times. But perhaps equally surprising that no one else has yet discovered these things, at least to my knowledge.


Cromper 5 years ago

lonestar,

Very intersting hub!

I have also had 'extraordinary' 'miracles' happen to me. Perhaps I should write a hub?

The 'miracles' I have experienced are on a par with your own. Of course, I call them 'coincidences'.

My own experiences are not limited to one day but coincidences that span over a period of months and one that happens over the course of 2 weeks (but the story begins over 10 years prior to the event!).

It's only natural that you would interpret such an extraordinary event as a divine intervention. I feel very guilty when I say that your experience is not exactly 'mind-blowing' because I don't want to dampen your spirit.

Thanks for sharing anyway. If you would be interested in my own experiences I might be persuaded to write them down.


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lone77star 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines Author

Hi Cromper. Write a hub? Why don't you.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

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