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When You Did You First Know That God Was Real?

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    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    For the people out there who do not believe in God and you are entitled to your opinions but I am looking for answers from people who actually do believe in God.

    For those who do believe, if we get people who write anti-God stuff, let's not respond to it and just focus on supporting each other.

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      Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Probably when A Troubled Man said there was no God. That didn't clinch it for me; but it made me realize there might be something to belief.

    2. 61
      Herald of the dayposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I've gone through different experiences and challenges that bonly when i said let me  trust God i saw a difference

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        SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Me too.

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    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    I first knew that I believed in God when I was five. I kept having the same dream about God over and over again and it comforted me.

    1. wilderness profile image96
      wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      About the same for me.  Somewhere as a small child, around 5 or 6.  It was comforting, my parents said it was so (and parents never lie) and all my friends knew it, too.

      Around 10 or so I grew out of it just as I did Santa - most kids come to understand that their make believe friends aren't real and the God gambit is no different.

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      Brenda Durhamposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I don't recall ever not knowing that God was real.
      I had credible sources that I observed and learned from.
      That would be my parents.
      Then when I went to the altar and received Christ as my Savior,  that confidence that I had always had in my parents' wisdom and faith was confirmed as I felt the Holy Spirit come into my heart and life.
      It's a legacy in a way.    While no one can have faith FOR you,  nor choose for you,  their steadfastness and proven relationship with the Lord can be a powerful confirmation of the written word of God as well as the Holy Spirit.

    3. 61
      Herald of the dayposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      its only when one cames to the end of trusting His ability and wisdom that one can begin a journey of seeking God

  3. 0
    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    I know God exists like I know the sun exists. He is very real to me.

    1. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Funny how all of us can see the sun but we can't see your God. Is He playing hide and seek?

      1. janesix profile image60
        janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I can see him. Wonder why you can't.

        1. A Troubled Man profile image60
          A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          We know you're lying.

          1. janesix profile image60
            janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Prove that I have not seen God.

            You have no idea what I've seen, smelled, heard and felt. God manifests to people in many different ways. I've been lucky. But I think most people just refuse to see God. It can be frightening.

            1. wilderness profile image96
              wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Describe Him.  His appearance, smell, texture and color of "skin", pitch of voice, etc. 

              Do it, in a blind study, with 99 other people making the same claim.  If the descriptions match within reasonable limits you have proved your point that you have seen Him; if not the statement is probably a lie.  Probably, but not certainly - the other 99 people may be lying and you could be the only person on earth that has actually seen Him.

              1. janesix profile image60
                janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I'm pretty sure everyone sees God in a different way. I've only seen God once, in feminine aspect, black hair like smoke, small, frail, black eyes.

                Smell is a spicy, flowery or rosy smell. Like cinnamon and roses.

                I've felt electrical feelings, physical euphoria, spontanious mudras, things I can't explain because they aren't totally physical.

                Heard a male voice several times, inside and outside of my heard.

                1. wilderness profile image96
                  wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  This is a problem.  Most, if not all, of the time when people look at the same thing (or nothing at all) and report such radically different images we write it off to imagination, hallucination, insanity or something similar (including, of course, an outright lie).  When you add such things as telepathy (hearing things inside your head) the same reaction is even more pronounced.

                  How did you test the truth of these "hallucinations"?  What did you do to verify it was the creator of the universe, to rule out other possibilities?  Can you repeat the experience on demand or especially show it to anyone else?  Did a camera or sound recorder show anything?  Did you take samples of the air for analysis (smell) or detect electrical anomalies with instrumentation? 

                  Beyond trying to prove the phenomena as God to others, what did you do to verify it for yourself?  To be perfectly honest, this sounds like more of the same 'ol, same 'ol.  Christianity has carefully defined their God in such a away as to make it impossible to verify; your description and comments follow that same line.

                  1. janesix profile image60
                    janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Said it many times, I don't need to prove anything. My experiences are real, they're mine. You can worry about proof all you want. You won't get it. There's a reason for that. It has to do with faith.

                  2. Don W profile image83
                    Don Wposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    The opening poster experiences something she attributes to a deity. You think it is unlikely that experience is attributable to a deity. If her goal is to persuade you and everyone else that a deity exists, then not being able to offer objectively verifiable evidence is indeed a "problem"; But if that's not the goal, then in what way is her experience and what she believes about it, a problem?

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                  SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  That's interesting how you see God. Thank your for sharing smile The biblical God I see is male. Some people don't like the bible because man was created before females and God and Jesus are males and Moses was male. There were incredibly strong females too in the bible.

  4. 0
    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    I will always believe in God because I know he exists.

    1. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      You just believe He exists. To know would mean we would all know.

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    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    I am reading the bible and the ten commandments make sense to me. I've seen so much cruelty in the world. I grew up with around some people who had no moral compass and wanted to live life by their own cruel rules. We had no bible. I dreamed of God and never even heard of a bible. Life was hellish, full of misery. As a child I remember being in such pain and even Church people let me down because when I got older, there was this church group. I was getting beat up and the Minister just watched and didn't help me. He just gave me a sad smile so I knew that God wasn't Church. Too many people in Church were cruel (not all of them). I read about Jesus and was comforted. He helped the children. He said that children would be the greatest in heaven.

  6. SwordofManticorE profile image74
    SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago

    Ever since I was a child, I believed in God, but never knew who He was until about a year ago. Undieing, unfailing, unconditional perfect love.

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I'm still getting to know him through reading the bible.

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    Beth37posted 3 years ago

    This poor woman is trying so hard just to have a conversation with other believers and for some reason there are a few antagonists who refuse to leave her alone.

    Can you imagine if she was disabled and she asked ppl to talk about being confined to a wheelchair, and several able-bodied ppl told her that she didn't face any challenges that every one else didn't face?

    Or if she asked ppl to share memories of their bar/bat mitzvah and a bunch of gentiles ganged up on her, telling her she was a fool and the time she spent studying was wasted?

    What if she was a young black woman and asked ppl to share their experiences growing up as a minority and a group of whites mocked her and told her she was a liar and her sob story was exaggerated?

    This is nothing but discrimination by those who have not shared similar experiences as those with faith. If a thread is started asking ppl to debate faith vs. atheism, fine, but when a thread is started by someone with the desire to discuss a topic close to their heart, with like minded ppl, it's prejudice to allow assailants to harass and mock without even a word of rebuke.

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      Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Sorry. I didn't mean to antagonize.

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        Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I didn't think you had Emile.

        Wilderness, "allowed" is not the term I'm looking for. Respect is. There are things that ppl know from being raised with manners that should and should not be done. Not that I am one to teach on manners, believe me, I like a sharp tongued joke more than any one I know, but not at the expense of a gentle heart. "Should" is more the point I'm trying to make. "Should" I say such a thing to someone whose life experience is different than mine? "Should" I say something hurtful, just because I am physically able, or does that make me a bully?

        Saying religion should possibly not be a subject for this forum, is not only censorship, it's ludicrous. For one, they have an entire heading sectioned off exactly for this topic. So unless you are in the position to make those kinds of changes here at HP's, the point is moot.

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          Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Having the right doesn't make something the right thing to do. But,  even behavior considered rude won't be considered rude across the board. Wilderness has a point. If you are going to post in a public forum you have to accept that anyone with a desire to do so will post. You can't censor them. If you don't let your emotions overshadow your reason, we can all learn something. Even if it is only something about one another.

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            Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Discussion is awesome. What ATM does is not discussion, it's mockery. If you want me to cut and paste the constant purple dragon comments, I will.

            Again, if a different minority were posting, ppl would think the criticism was made by those who had not yet reached full maturity, but b/c it is a matter of faith, the antagonists have full reign. It's not right and what's happening to this one person of faith, trying so hard to discuss a topic close to her heart with others, is grossly uncalled for.

            1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
              SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Christ calls such as ATM pigs.

              1. janesix profile image60
                janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Forgive them, for they know not what they do

                1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
                  SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Don't we always?

                  1. janesix profile image60
                    janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Going down the route of name calling makes you just as bad as ATM.

                    Christ never called anyone a pig.

            2. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Using one fantasy to compare another fantasy is perfectly acceptable. Lots of folks use them here.



              The maturity level is shown by those who toss out personal insults.



              Yes, it is right, sorry you disagree. big_smile

        2. SwordofManticorE profile image74
          SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          It almost seems that the forum is an excuse for them to hit someone with their beliefs or unbelief's. I could give a dam about a thread written by an atheist about Christian faith or any religion for that matter, so why do they insist in interfering with our beliefs and thoughts? It's almost pathetic.

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            Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I don't look at this as an "us against them", I look at this as right and wrong. We know it's wrong to harass someone just b/c they have a different belief system than we do. We have heard MLK jr speak, we have read our history books, we are in a place in time where there is no excuse for mocking someone for their faith, or b/c they are in a minority.

            1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
              SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Beth, cyberbullying is for the weak minded.

            2. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              No one is being harassed, please stop lying.



              No, you have not read history books, that is obvious by so many of your posts.

              Sorry, but mocking a religion has nothing to do with minorities, that is entirely false.

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                Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                If I had money, I would adopt more babies. I love the babies. Melissa said I could have one of hers.

        3. wilderness profile image96
          wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Sorry, you're off track.  The OP asked for the beginnings of faith, and I respected that and answered the question.  That I went on to mention the loss of faith...well...it's as I also said later - if all you want is a particular answer then go someplace where that is all you'll get instead of a public forum.

          Personally I don't post in these forums to have my words repeated back at me.  I don't post to ask someone to reinforce my beliefs with platitudes of their own.  I expect dissenting views and welcome them.  If all you want is reinforcement, a tape recorder works wonders; you can hear the same thing 100 times without one scrap of opposition.

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            Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Well that was a condescending comment, but ok. I don't think I asked why *you specifically came to these forums or what *you expected out of them... that's a distraction tactic. *My point was that her right to post a topic about faith without being mocked should be an assumed right in respectable circles.

            I didn't think your post was rudest thing I'd ever read, not by far. I just think when a group of people who believe the opposite of the op begin posting, it can become kind of overwhelming and hurtful to be the recipient of those remarks. Maybe you can handle a plethora of disparaging remarks, but maybe some ppl would leave the forum never to return. That's called bullying. Maybe we should be careful about such treatment.

            1. wilderness profile image96
              wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              But, Beth, I didn't mock her.  It takes a very silly comment to be mocked by me and sandcastle didn't do that.  I didn't even mock the comment that sandcastle knows God exists the same as the sun, as silly and ridiculous as that comment is.

              Same thing, though - if you don't want to see dissenting views, (not talking about mocking here) take it to a private forum where they won't happen.  Ask for comments in private, where you know the people that are allowed to comment and where ONLY those folks can post.

              To go public and ask for comments, but only comments that you want to hear, is never going to work out too well.  I know - I've received my share of disparaging comments and didn't like it.  Nevertheless, it is a part of posting in public forums; if you can't stand to see comments that you disagree with it might be best that they leave public forums and stick to private ones.

              Bullying - yeah, a few people around here constantly denigrate and "bully" others in their beliefs.  That, too, is a part of being on a public forum as distasteful as it might be.  We either learn to live with it or leave.

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                Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this
            2. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Wow, the hypocrisy is massive. You personally and continuously insult others but are bleating "bullying" from others who do nothing more than stay on topic.

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                Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I love babies.

          2. A Troubled Man profile image60
            A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            This.

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              Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Do you fall asleep alone, in front of the computer and wake up that way?

        4. A Troubled Man profile image60
          A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          You personally insult others all the time. Are you saying you don't? Do you want a long list of insults you've posted here?

          The believer doth protest too much.



          You try and censor others, yourself, and yes, that is ludicrous.

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            Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            If you had tiny baby feet, you would fall over when you tried to walk.

            1. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Yes, I understand you must resort to personal insults.

    2. wilderness profile image96
      wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      It has been my experience that if you want a feel-good group with everyone patting each other on the back and reinforcing specific beliefs, a public forum is probably not the best place to post.

      Maybe form a FB group, where anyone that doesn't agree with you is not allowed to post at all.  Or  G+ community - somewhere that the voices of dissension or differing views are not allowed.  If it's about religion maybe a private home, a church or mosque.  Not a public street corner like a forum.

    3. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      That is a blatant lie, these are public forums. If someone wants to have a private conversation, they can do so offline.



      That is utterly ridiculous and not even remotely similar.



      No, it is not prejudice, please stop lying.

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        Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        They have cute little feet.

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Good points Beth. Some people think being cynical is best. Doubting Thomas wanted proof. He didn't take things at face value and Jesus didn't put him down for that.  But atleast Thomas believed when he saw Jesus after he rose again. Some people still wouldn't believe.

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    Beth37posted 3 years ago

    Ok, so maybe just to drag this train back on the tracks...

    Sand castles... I remember when I was around 3 years old, I had learned in church that God never sleeps or slumbers. So when I prayed that night, I remember telling God, that I knew He didn't sleep, but I told Him He should rest a bit... just lay down. lol
    I felt very close to Him at that moment and Ive never forgotten it. I don't really remember a time not believing in Him.

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      That's an adorable story. It is hard to comprehend that God never sleeps but he did rest on the 7th day.

  9. PaulGoodman67 profile image89
    PaulGoodman67posted 3 years ago

    I was brought up to believe that God was real from a very young age.  However, when I reached the age of 10, I began to question many of the things that I'd been taught.  By the time that I reached 18, I was pretty certain that God and religion essentially just existed inside people's minds.  Nothing has happened to change my opinion in any major way since then and I am now 47.

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      Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Well thanks for sharing Paul. lol

      1. PaulGoodman67 profile image89
        PaulGoodman67posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        No problem, Beth.  smile

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks for sharing. For me, there wasn't a time when I didn't believe.

  10. 0
    Rayne123posted 3 years ago

    I always believed in God, we were brought up catholic, not that it matters but old skool parents right, being catholic then was believing in God.

    As for my self I never questioned God I would always pray,  when i needed an answer to something God would always supply my answer, either by a bang or whatever way he knows the person he is dealing with knows best. A song on the radio, feathers.

    Actually he is doing something for me now, well its completely his work his finished.

    I never once doubted that God can do anything. It amazes me that people believe Jesus rose the dead (so do I)only way to be saved is through Jesus, the truth. However no one seems to believe in Gods wrath, so if he can raise people from the dead he can move a city with one finger.

    I have a friend that is saved well a few, and this one girl told me the other day that she didnt even realize about punishment or Sodom and Gomorrah, or what God did to those that disobeyed. She would just read the good parts in the bible I guess.

    I said to her, I told you long ago, God works both ways, but she just dismissed it. Why is it so many do not want to believe in his wrath. I love it and if your saved then there is no need to worry about his wrath.

    So with that said, I have always believed in God for as long as I can remember
    Laurie

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I think the idea that there is a God can be pretty scary for many people. People can't understand endlesslessness of space but it exists. Outer space is mind boggling in itself. A black hole is hard to comprehend. The fact that there are all these planets spinning around and stars; where did they come from? Where did matter come from to begin with? It just is? And how can space be endless like a bottomless pit? How come there is no other life than we know of? Earth just happens to be in the right position, the only planet with substantial amounts of water (3/4 water). No water, no life as we know it. Why is everything so beautiful and why does it work the way it does? How come we heal when we cut ourselves. Scientists can not explain how our bodies heal, only that they heal. There is so much that we don't understand. And the spiritual realm; does it exist? Do demons exist? I've had experiences with demonic forces. I lived in a house that was owned by Satanists. We found a room with a hexagon and weird pictures. That house was scary. Maybe as an Asperger person I was more sensitive to the vibes. I was literally pinned to my bed by an invisible force on several occassions. My step father starting acting like they guy from Amityville Horror. His eyes were wild. I remember starting to read the bible again, a little one. On the bus, I hid it and read bits with my head down because I didn't want anyone to know what I was reading. I didn't want to be labeled Jesus freak-you know, I was a teenager. That's a good way to get teased bad, bring bible onto the bus and start singing hymns. So I'm reading this little New Testament bible and a stranger suddenly approaches me and says, "So your reading the bible eh? Why are you doing that?" There's no way they could have seen what I was reading. There are forces we don't understand out there.

      1. A Troubled Man profile image60
        A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        You should refer to yourself when making a claim of not understanding the world around you because others do understand.



        They've never been shown to exist and are only found in myths and superstitions.



        lol It's funny when you believers make stuff up, which sounds exactly like a movie script.



        lol Sure, there is, you just didn't notice. There are no forces shown to exist that scientists are not aware. Sorry.

  11. prettydarkhorse profile image63
    prettydarkhorseposted 3 years ago

    I struggle actually with this. I just feel it, experiential and phenomenological evidences I can't supply any.

    The feelings are real and I know there is that "God".

    1. janesix profile image60
      janesixposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Easy to feel, hard to explain, because it is mostly taking place in your soul.

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      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I know too but through dreams and a knowing like you wrote.

  12. 0
    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    When  someone who doesn't believe in God keeps arguing with someone who does believe in God and tells them that their beliefs are nonsense, that is a form of hounding. The forum asked for people who do believe in God to comment. The forum didn't seek out answers from people who do not believe in God. Those who do not believe in God (some) are seeking out the forum to criticize. That is hounding.

    1. JMcFarland profile image91
      JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      actually, since this is an open forum on an open site, anyone with something to say who abides the hubpages' terms of conduct and forum rules are more than free to comment on anything they so choose.  You cannot pick and choose who comments on what, and you do not get the final say in who's allowed to participate.  If that's what you're looking for, then maybe you should seek out an only-christian website where others are banned, deleted, censored or not allowed to post at all.  :-)  It is not hounding to present a difference of opinion.  Believers comment on atheist forum topics all the time - it's called freedom of speech.

      Additionally, didn't you state that if anyone posts anti-god stuff you should just not respond and ignore it?  That was you, right?

    2. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      No, it isn't. You are not being victimized.



      No, it is criticism.

      Hounding: Harass or persecute (someone) relentlessly.

      You are not being persecuted, so don't lie about it.

  13. 0
    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago

    I am not responding to anyone one person directly. I was wrong; people should be able to say what they want on an open forum. After reading these comments I certainly don't want to be a control freak who won't let others express themselves. So people can say what they like and so can I.

    1. JMcFarland profile image91
      JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      thank you.  I have no problem with dissenting opinions, and 'm not an atheist who is prone to say that people are delusional out of turn.  I do enjoy discussing those beliefs and having intelligent conversations about them, but not because i just like to make fun of people.  It's about sharing ideas, opinions, etc.  I don't understand why a lot of religious people think that religion or beliefs should somehow be immune to criticism or opposing points of view - nothing else is.

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        SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I don't even like religion because I wasn't allowed to question anything. That is a horrible way to exist. I just don't like people calling my beliefs nonsense or calling me a liar when I share my experiences. To say, "I think you are lying" is preferable to calling me a liar because who made them God? How do they know what I lived? I'm not good at debating but it is mind expanding. It is something I have to work on. I've had pretty terrible church experiences because I asked why. I didn't understand why Jesus had to die on the cross. Why such a horrible death? Why did animals need to be sacrificed; why all the blood? I like the commandments, proverbs, and the many parts of the bible about living a good life (especially the teachings of Jesus). I believe in God but there is so much I don't understand. I did feel squelched at Church because I asked questions. I didn't like the angry looks and the peer pressure to simply accept. I would ask a question and the minister would say, "We'll cross the road when we come to it" instead of giving me a direct answer. But I don't need that minister to know God.

        1. JMcFarland profile image91
          JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          you sound like me when i first began my journey to atheism.  Our experiences sound similar - at least partially.  I was raised incredibly strictly in a southern baptist, missionary home.  Questions were not encouraged, and I was basically told to just shut up and have faith.  After returning home from the mission field with my parents, I was on my way to a christian college and began my education in theology and biblical literature.  As I continued to read the bible, I realized that there were things in there that weren't really taught in church - things that I couldn't understand.  Things that I couldn't agree with.  So I started studying the bible more in depth in order to figure out where it came from.  As it turns out, a lot of things that are taught as "fact" in churches are anything but - and some things are downright lies.  As I began to read the bible in the original languages (and even as an atheist, I still read it today in order to expand my knowledge) I realized that I just couldn't accept it as the infallible word of god anymore.  The god described within it was nothing like the god I was taught about.  He was cruel, vindictive, jealous, angry, bloodthirsty and more.  In other words, he sounded like a human on a bad day.  Then I started to study the evidence for Jesus - or rather the lack thereof.  I started studying the early church and their practices, and the more I learned, the more I realized that it went against everything I was taught to believe.  Eventually (and rather recently, considering the time I spent as a believer) I came out as an atheist.  It was a long journey, but a worthwhile one - at least for me.

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            SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Thank you for sharing your experiences. It was interesting to read. God does come across as vindictive when he is not obeyed; he punished people big time. He flooded the entire world sparing only Noah and his family. It is scary to think that someone like this is in charge right? Follow me or I'll smite you. Thankfully I do believe in his teachings. The ten commandments make sense to me and I have a lawfulness likes rules. Just because God is vengeful does not mean that he does not exist. In the bible, in my opinion, God kept trying to get his chosen people to do what he wanted and most kept disobeying him. They worshipped Baal and threw their kids into the fire (as a sacrifice to Baal). I also think Satan exists. According to the Jewish belief, Satan isn't evil but is simply a guy doing his job (tempting us to sin). Christian belief says Satan is evil and isn't working for God but against him. I personally belief that the devil is evil; he wants us to fall. He doesn't care what we do as long as we don't do what God wants. I think Satan hates the world, the animals, and all people.

            To many God seems like a dictator but that doesn't mean he isn't real. If a person has a overbearing boss they can't simply close their eyes and decide that the boss does not exist. They can choose to get another job though.
            I think for many the choice between God and Satan is a rock and a hard place and many decide not to choose at all. They don't want God or the devil and his fire pit. I can see how it would be frightening to think that there are only two choices.

            In the bible (I think it is in Jeremiah) God says false prophets preach the lovey dovey stuff but God makes it clear that those who do not follow him will be punished. God makes it clear that he is wrathful. It is his way or the highway to hell.

            For me, I don't have a problem with a bossy God because what he stands for makes sense to me. I don't want humans in charge. Look what they do. At least God has the power to back up his words unlike humans who want all the power without the qualifications.

            We need rules. I don't like all the suffering in the world. What if everybody followed the ten commandments? Wouldn't the world be a better place? Look at all the heart ache when people cheat. Look what lust does to the world. What if people guarded their thoughts. What if people recognized it when they began to covet and before they spread gossip due to envy they stopped themselves. How many lives have been ruined because of slander?

            I want a bossy God to end the suffering. I would like a bossy God to stop the world's suffering. I don't want a nice God who says, "To each his own". People only like that mindset when their rights are not being violated. What about the Boston bombing? Do we treat those two gently even though their bombs lead to the death of an 8 year old child and blew off people's legs? Would someone who truly followed the ten commandments have set off those bombs? The bible talks about not lying in wait and spilling innocent blood.

            The slipperly slope world scares me. Some people even argue that there is no right or wrong. Some people even say that a serial killer is just exercising his right to make his own choices making him a superman, someone who determines his own destiny. I see how philosophy can be crazy making to the point where people can not even say when something is wrong anymore.

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              SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              spelling: heartache.

            2. 0
              SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I know that people can choose to follow the ten commandments without following God. But without a universal set of wrongs and rights, everybody is free to hurt whom they please if they feel like it. Without law, a person could murder somebody and get away with because there would be no law against murder. *Yes people get away with murder via loop holes. But what if there was no law at all? There would be no protection at all. The people who don't like laws usually change their minds when someone steps on their toes. They are going to the police, the courts, the lawyers. Of course people need to be discerning. Some laws are wrong. People need to have the freedom to question. Abraham questioned God. He argued with him regarding the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and God listened to Abraham. At least you can talk to him. You can reason with him. Try reasoning with a psycho boss.

              1. A Troubled Man profile image60
                A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                But, God has provided a universal set of so-called 'wrongs and rights' which have failed miserably. That's why we as humans create our own set of morals and ethics that works much better.



                Exactly, but the flaw in the argument is that the vast majority of people will not intentionally harm others in any way, it is only a very small minority of folks that cause the vast majority of criminal and violent acts. Most people are sickened even with the thought of violence, let alone carrying out the act.

          2. Jerami profile image78
            Jeramiposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            @JMcFarland;   It seems to me that the following is the basic core of your entire post above  .....              "As I began to read the bible in the original languages  I realized that I just couldn't accept it as the infallible word of god anymore". 
                 "The god described within it was nothing like the god I was taught about. .                                               In other words, he sounded like a human on a bad day.  I started studying the early church and their practices, and the more I learned, the more I realized that it went against everything I was taught to believe".
            = - = - = -
            ME …     There are many who still believe in the God of Abraham and Jesus as the Messiah, who would agree with the basic core of your statement.  Church can be a good thing and a bad thing !!
            If I believed the Church only teaches the infallible word of God? I would soon be worshiping the church.

            I think that the bible and the church can give us direction …   but we should NOT take a nap in the back seat,  lazily awaiting the arrival of the destination?

        2. A Troubled Man profile image60
          A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          You are literally one step away from becoming a non-believer.

          1. Jerami profile image78
            Jeramiposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I believe in God but I don't believe everything that has ever been written about him.  Especially when there are so many denominations each having different "Interpretations" of the same verses.
            Interpretations acheive a life of their own after they have been preached for any number of centuries.

              At this point the interpretations we have come to trust overpower our minds when we read the scriptures themselves to the point that we do not see the words which are actually written.

            It is kinda like ....   I know that Elvis Presly did exist ...  but I don't believe everything everyone in every one of his fan club's says about him.

            1. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Yes, so you selectively decide what you want to believe.



              Not to worry, Christianity does not have a monopoly on hypocrisy and contradiction, other religions have it in abundance, too.



              Making them worthless.



              But, we can understand the truth about Elvis because he wasn't an invisible super being, he was human.

              1. Jerami profile image78
                Jeramiposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Your arguementive shills have reached an all time high with this post. Hands down you have won the debate, You have convinced me of these facts

                Everyone decide what they want to believe

                Yes hypocracy can be found across the globe among every nationality and race. No one has a monopoly cause everyone on the face of the earth has a portion of it.

                Yes private interpretations are somewhat worthless to humanity as a whole.

                Yes, you can believe everything everyone has to says about Elvis if you decided to?

    2. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Except, you must not say personal things about others. Anything else pretty much goes.

  14. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
    Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago

    It is strange to me that I can say * I *, although did not make myself, my stomach or my brain. Something else made my body. It was formed by nature, evolution, chance and apparently random acts of sex throughout time.
    Yet * I * am in this body and  * I * operate it.

    Furthermore, my consciousness is invisible.
    No one can see it; only the evidence of it.
    (My keyboarding is evidence of my invisible consciousness.)

  15. 60
    Deaf Dialoguesposted 3 years ago

    Some people say that God doesn't exist because you can't see him or hear him or physically touch him. Who cares if you can do any of those things? You also can't see love or hear it or physically touch it. But you know it is real because you "feel it" emotionally, not physically. So if you can believe in love, why not in God?

    I have always believed in God, but through experiences, I have come to "know" that He exists. As I get older, my belief becomes stronger because of what I see in the world around me. When I look at the universe, theories and random explanations make less sense than believing in a creator. Some people are confused because of Biblical translations. The Hebrew word for "Create" also means to "Organize". While it may be hard to believe that God performed some sort of magic and created our universe out of nothing (which I don't believe), it is very logical to see the evolution of the earth as guided and directed by a supreme overseer who is much smarter than we have become. It is certainly more logical to me that somebody made the universe happen than that it was just a bizarre series of coincidences. So how do you explain dinosaurs and the existence of an earth that contains materials billions of years old? To me it seems logical. To organize means to pull things together into a structured format. To take what is already in existence and organize it into a workable universe means that there is no conflict between science and the bible; there are just scientific facts that haven't yet been matched up to religious understanding. I believe that when science and religion are both fully understood, they will be one and the same.

    1. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Lol, sorry but love is an emotion which is "physically" tied to our human bodies. Gods are myths.



      Argument from ignorance.



      Argument from incredulity.



      It's called evolution.



      There are no structured formats.



      Lol, no they are completely on opposite sides of the spectrum, the bible is myth and superstition while science is facts and evidence. Sorry, that you don't understand that.



      That is baloney.



      That would only be stated by one who has no clue what entails science.

      1. 60
        Deaf Dialoguesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        So if love is a human emotion and you can feel it, what makes feeling God's love any different? What makes loving God any different?

        To those who don't believe, if you are wrong, I am sorry for you. If you are right, I haven't lost anything. If death is a big black hole, at least I went there happily. If death is the great judgment day, you've got a lot to worry about.

        Sorry but I think that optimism is better than pessimism. I have personally spoken to God and had prayers answered. You don't believe it? Your problem. Nothing you say will change my mind. God is as real to me as the people standing next to me. The only thing that could change my mind is waking up and finding out there is nothing after death. But if there is nothing after death, I won't be waking up to find out, will I? I respect your right to have your own view. But I do find it dismal and depressing.

        1. JMcFarland profile image91
          JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          that's the pascal's wager fallacy.  I'm sorry to tell you, but it's been debunked.

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            SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            "It's been debunked"; that's a good passive sentence that doesn't mean anything. Some people have criticized the pascal theory; so? I believe in God too so "na na nana na'. A person doesn't have to wait until everyone agrees with them before they have an opinion or believe something, "Do I like the colour blue, hmmm, let's see, I'd better check and see what everyone else likes first.  Oh, somebody doesn't like blue, I better think this out again".

            1. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              No one is going to stop you from having, embracing and sharing a ridiculous and childish opinion.

              1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
                SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                And you wine when someone calls you a name.

                1. A Troubled Man profile image60
                  A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  You mean like you did when you called us all swine?

                  1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
                    SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    It is what it is.

                2. 0
                  SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I agree; many do wine. Some people can't take what they dish. They cry personal insult while simulataneously attacking others with personal insults. It is hypocrisy really.

                  1. 0
                    Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Im sorry to rein on everyone's parade, but we all half to start throwing an H in our wine or it might go bad.

            2. JMcFarland profile image91
              JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              okay, I was trying to be brief (and assumed that you would research the rebuttals if you were curious), but if you insist:

              The Wager and it's Arguments

              For those unfamiliar with the principle, Pascal’s wager is one of the fundamental, go-to arguments used by Christians in conversations with non-believers. Simply put Pascal’s wager states:

              There are two possibilities. Either a god exists, or a god does not exist. If there’s a 50% chance that god does exist, it is more beneficial to believe in him to avoid the possibility of going to hell. In other words, you’d better believe in (insert theist’s god of choice) or else you’ll be sorry.

              Even more simply, if a non-believer claims that they do not believe in a god, the theist often asks “what if you’re wrong?” This is especially valid when dealing with pre-suppositional apologists, who like to ask if you can truly know anything - and if not, then somehow "therefore god" comes into play. Dealing with some of these people can be infuriating, and often leads to a complete derailing of the debate process, rendering further communication practically impossible.

              Problem 1: Pascal’s wager fundamentally fails when you consider one of the most basic logical fallacies which is referred to as “begging the question”. The initial problem with the wager is that it assumes certain qualities and traits about the god that the theist is trying to promote. It assumes, for example, that their god is not only real, but that an eternal heaven exists only for people who believe in him and that an eternal hell exists for people who don’t.

              If you accept the fact that it begs the question in the most basic sense, then you no longer have a limit on what you have to believe for no reason. In order to be logically consistent you would have to behave in a manner based on mental probabilities – to receive reward and avoid punishment with no basis for believing in either one.

              Problem #2: The second problem with Pascal’s wager is that is uses emotion (primarily fear) to manipulate the minds of non-believers. All human beings would rather not suffer. Very few (if any) people actually enjoy suffering, and I would go so far as to say that NO human being enjoys suffering enough to willfully choose to go to hell for eternity.

              Pascal does not present any evidence to prove that this supposed hell exists – or that the god that would send countless people there exists either. Fear is a powerful motivator, and that’s the key to this whole wager. If a believer can make you afraid, you may not need evidence or logic or reason to believe. When it comes right down to it, however, they manipulate and brainwash through fear because they don’t HAVE any of those other things.

              Problem #3: Not only are the two problems already listed practically insurmountable but the third problem – the creation of a false dichotomy – goes even farther. A Christian that resorts to Pascal’s wager in a conversation with an atheist or non-believer is ignoring the glaring inconsistency. The question itself is part of the problem. The theist in question has already applied critical thinking to every other religion in the world, past, present and future. They have either not learned about them or discarded them outright because they agree with the one they currently believe in. While it may be childish to turn the question around and ask the theist “what if you’re wrong” instead, it is indeed a tempting possibility.

              The idea is that the believer has decided (probably based on fear, like they’re trying to impose on you) that their particular god is the true god, and has therefore indirectly decided that other god claims are false. If they believe in their god because they want to avoid his eternal punishment, what precludes them from fearing all the punishments found in other religion?

              It is not about deciding between Christianity and flat-out atheism. There are hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of different religions throughout the world and just as many gods. By deciding to believe in the Christian god, you’re excluding all the other religions – that have their own versions of hell, the afterlife and punishment. It’s not a true 50/50 percentage. In actuality, there is a 50% chance that there is no god – and there’s a fraction of a percentage that every god that exists in the world exists. Therefore, there is a higher probability that atheism is true, and that ALL god claims are not, especially considering the lack of evidence for ANY of them.

              The equation would look something like this:

              If there is a 50/50 shot that a god does exist, each god claim would lay claim to a fraction of the affirmative 50%. Since there are thousands if not hundreds of thousands of god claims throughout history and into the present, the likelihood of the Christian (or any other theist) being right is miniscule at best. So while the atheist still has a 50% chance that there is no god at all, the theist of any particular faith now has an (estimated) .0005134697 chance that their deity is the correct one out of thousands of options. So no, it is not better to believe in that god and risk offending any of the other possibilities. 50% is much better than a fraction of a single percentage point. It’s impossible to believe every deity claim out there. For survival purposes, most of them are mutually exclusive. Therefore, you’re probably going to offend someone, somewhere. Non-belief, on the other hand, offends no one – unless the particular deity is so egotistical (like the god of the bible, for instance) that the mere notion of someone not believing in him, despite having no compelling evidence to confirm its existence, would be sufficient to damn them to hell – eternally.

              Problem #4: The last problem with Pascal’s wager is that it assumes (incorrectly) that believing in a god to avoid eternal punishment has absolutely no cost, while a lack of belief can somehow end up costing you everything.

              It’s never good to accidentally believe a lie, let alone believing a lie willfully. When faced with the abject lack of evidence or confronted with opposing evidence, your fear demands that you ignore it and continue on, regardless of whether or not your beliefs are true.

              Most Christians pay a high cost for their faith. They go to church and spend a lot of time doing church-associated events. They tithe as dictated by scripture and pay money to support their church. They subscribe to a belief system with a bloody past and an intolerant present and future. They vote to enact laws that discriminate against others because it goes against their belief on morality, etc. They close their minds to what truth could be and cease to question or view things skeptically. A willful belief in god mandates that you no longer search for knowledge which could eventually lead to truth based on evidence – not dictated by your emotions.

              Conclusion: I would say that one more thing needs to be taken into consideration. Since Pascal’s wager is usually a main-stream Christian phenomenon, you need to consider their claims about god as well. Fundamentally speaking, a god who would damn people to eternal hell for using the brain that he allegedly gave them is not a god that is worth believing in. If the bible is true, and god did all the things that the book says he did, that is not a moral god. It is a totalitarian dictator that puts Hitler to shame. It’s an egomaniac with a fragile ego that flies off the handle at any sign of disobedience. It condones immoral acts like slavery, genocide and murder and believes that the only solution is to offer a sacrifice of himself to himself because of his lust for blood. No deity of this caliper deserves worship or adoration. Furthermore, this "god" who created hell and sends everyone who disagrees with him there seems more egotistical than god-like.

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                Motown2Chitownposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Julie, that is the best breakdown on Pascal's Wager that I've seen. +1000

                Out of curiosity, do you know of a really good online concordance?  I have both Catholic and Protestant bibles in the house, but I would prefer one that covers the Apocrypha as well.

                big_smile

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                SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                These are still just opinions and it doesn't debunk anything not that I subscribe to pascal theory anyway. And your comment: "A willful belief in (G)od mandates that you no longer search for knowledge which could eventually lead to truth based on evidence – not dictated by your emotions".   No, believing in God does not mandate that I no longer search for knowledge and there is more than one type of evidence. You are presumptious in assuming that my belief in God is dictated by my emotions. I have personal evidence that God does exist. It is narrowed minded and bigoted to assume that everyone who believes in God is fearful, emotional and ignorant.

                1. JMcFarland profile image91
                  JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Wait, wait wait... Did you just call me a narrow-minded bigot?
                  ROFLMAO ROFLMAO ROFLMAO ROFLMAO ROFLMAO

                  The irony here is SO absurd and SO ludicrous that I'm laughing too hard to be offended.

                  1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
                    SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    How did you know she was talking about you JM?

                  2. 0
                    SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Good point SwordoManticorE. Believe it or not, nonbelievers and  atheist can be narrow-minded so chortle away JM.

                2. A Troubled Man profile image60
                  A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  It is extremely important those two statements are coupled together and resolved. At the very least, it will be revealed whether or not the 'personal evidence' does not just match the 'opinions' of others, they far exceed them as to be convincing, considering the opinions (based on evidence and math) are very convincing.

                  We await the personal evidence. I tingle.



                  That's true, but even those who don't get emotional and are not ignorant of facts or emit arrogance, still carry with them the psychological baggage of fear, still clinging on years later.

                  Here's a thought. Why not just take out all the supernatural mumbo jumbo and lay everything else on the table. You know what, you'll find a whole lot more willing, accepting and thinking converts.

                  And, don't think for a second the fact that you didn't even attempt to refute JM's very thoughtful post  escaped our attention. smile

              3. Don W profile image83
                Don Wposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I understand what you are trying to do, but I don't think you have done it.

                Problem 1: the argument does not assume the Christian god exists, it merely states that this is either true or untrue, and outlines one set of potential consequences if it is.

                Problem 2: just because someone considers an argument manipulative, that doesn't mean we can reasonably conclude the argument is false. The argument that "this argument is manipulative, therefore it is false" is itself a fallacy, a non sequitur.

                Problem 3: the likelihood of you existing as you do is around 10^2,685.000 (a 10 with 265,000 zeros after it). Likewise the likelihood of matter being more dominant than antimatter in the first moments of the universe are infinitesimal. By your reasoning it is therefore safe to conclude on paper, that neither you nor the universe exist. Both those conclusions are demonstrably wrong. The problem is that the likelihood of something's existence tells us nothing about the actuality of something's existence. It merely allows us to say whether something is likely or unlikely. The jump from "existence is unlikely" to "therefore does not exist" is a non sequitur also. Applying that fallacy is useful within the realm of everyday life (it helps us filter our assumptions) but it is a fallacy nevertheless. Another quirky result of this fallacy is the fact that, according to your argument, there is a greater probability that the Christian god-claim is true, than there is that you and the universe actually exist.

                1. A Troubled Man profile image60
                  A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Where do you get those numbers?

                  1. 0
                    Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I am so proud of you. I think this is the first time I have ever noticed you open up a discussion instead of shutting one down by just calling someone a liar. Good job.

                  2. Don W profile image83
                    Don Wposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Someone at Harvard with way too much time on their hands.

                    https://blogs.law.harvard.edu/abinazir/ … d-be-born/

              4. 0
                Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Wow, JM... Trying to figure out how I feel about this one


                The rest of it was cool

                1. 0
                  Motown2Chitownposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Deepes, I think what she may have meant is a willful, blindly obedient belief in God.  Which in truth, if you ask me, usually means an unquestioning literal take on Scripture and blind obedience to the leaders of one's church.  I don't believe that she's speaking to Christians such as you, me and others who are not fundamental Evangelicals. 

                  I could be wrong, and I don't want to attempt to speak for JM, but I don't believe there is any reason to take offense to what she said.

                  smile

                  1. JMcFarland profile image91
                    JMcFarlandposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    you're correct, Mo.

                    Keep in mind, that I just copied and pasted this post from a hub of mine, and i wrote that hub over 6 months ago - and I've adjusted my position to include Christians that do not fit the typical mold that I was accustomed to before coming to hubpages.  Being raised in a strict, fundamentalist Baptist house and being surrounded by that type of people for all of my childhood and adolescence took it's toll on me.

                  2. 0
                    Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    The problem with it, even if JM wasn't referring to you is that it was said in the first place. It's a broad stroke condemnation without the benefit of anything other than JM's assumption.  It's as ridiculous as someone insisting you are going to hell because they think they know what someone thinks.

                    Edit. The arrogance involved in thinking anyone can crawl inside another person's head and condemn their thought processes is amazing.

                  3. 0
                    Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    I didn't take total offense to it.. It's just that some atheists don't see the difference between the evangelicals and those like you, me and others as it pertains to blind belief in God since there is no proof of God.. I simply wasn't used to seeing a statement like this from JM.. I'd have expected this from others. So I wasn't sure how I felt about it yet.

        2. A Troubled Man profile image60
          A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          There's no such thing as love from a god.



          Oh no, it's the believer who has the most to worry about, considering they have chosen a god to worship, meanwhile all the other gods are lining waiting patiently for that believer to judge harshly as to why he didn't choose any of them.



          No, you haven't. That is a fabrication.



          No one is stopping you from believing you talk to gods, although some recommendations for getting professional help would be in order.



          If reality is dismal and depressing for you, it's little wonder why you need to escape into a world or religious fantasies.

          Again, seek some professional help for that problem.

    2. 0
      Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Very well said. smile

      1. A Troubled Man profile image60
        A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        You think those lies are well said? lol

        1. 0
          Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Did you really laugh at what you said cause if so... I find it beyond depressing that you lack faith *and a sense of humor.

          1. SwordofManticorE profile image74
            SwordofManticorEposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Beth, you will know them by theuir fruits.
            You will not find warmth in cold places (Godless).

            1. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              So, now we're cold? lol

    3. 0
      SandCastlesposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Those are excellent points Deaf Dialogues. When someone says 'prove to me that God exists or you are a liar', there is no way you could prove it to them anyway because the person will ignore or refute the proof; they have already made up their mind.

      1. A Troubled Man profile image60
        A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        That is a lie. No one has made up their minds and no one have provided any proof.

        1. Kathryn L Hill profile image85
          Kathryn L Hillposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Meta (beyond) physical.

          1. A Troubled Man profile image60
            A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Did you say something or was that a burp?

            1. 0
              Beth37posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              You're a child.

  16. Zelkiiro profile image84
    Zelkiiroposted 3 years ago

    I once believed in God. This was around the same time that I believed in Santa Claus, voting mattered, and that America was the greatest country on Earth.

  17. A Troubled Man profile image60
    A Troubled Manposted 3 years ago

    You two are hilarious, it's like the scene in the Lethal Weapon 3 where Gibson and Russo are comparing scars. lol

    1. 0
      Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      lol I was thinking more Brangelina in Mr & Mrs Smith

 
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