....Why you choose not to believe? And is there a way that it can be done without attacking those who DO choose to do so?
I ask because I truly want to understand, not because I want to fight my way into earning a reward for saving your soul.
Many of us didn't choose. We listened to the nonsense and immediately recognized it as such.
I was born without belief and was smart enough to reject it when the church tried to indoctrinate me.
There was no choice.
May I ask you a question?
Why do you think you are "attacked" when people point out that your beliefs are irrational and ludicrous?
We are simply pointing out truth. You have an emotional need to believe; we understand that. But can you realistically expect that we are going to stand by and let nonsense pass by unnoticed?
Personally I do not feel attacked. Others do sometimes, and I can understand that. You believe with no ambiguity that God does NOT exist. Joe Blow believes with no ambiguity that God DOES exist. Would you feel attacked if he said you're an idiot to believe that God doesn't exist? Not saying you would, but there is the possibility that his statement could offend. Now, if you call Joe Blow an idiot because he believes that God does exist, is there not the same possibility that your statement could be considered offensive. That's all I mean.
I do not feel attacked. I know how and why I've arrived at my own believing or unbelieving conclusion. YOUR opinion of MY fact does not change it for me.
Nobody calls anyone an idiot here - if they do, they get banned from the forums.
What actually happens is that theists FEEL like they are being called idiots when the obvious irrationality of their beliefs are brought into the light. That's their issue to deal with, not ours.
I've never felt like an idiot for my admittedly irrational beliefs.
There's no proof in God's existence. Yet I still believe He exists. The belief has given me strength in hard times. No harm to anyone else.
The danger comes when someone uses his belief in God to rationalize treating other people badly. (God says X is an abomination, so I can feel free to persecute anyone who practices X. Heaven help anyone who chooses to wear poly-cotton blends!)
The opposite can happen, too. People can decide that since they think so much more clearly than everyone else, they have the right to persecute those who do not think so clearly, as in the (first) French revolution's cult of reason and subsequent reign of terror.
The second scenario is a lot more rare, probably because there are a lot more believers in the world than atheists.
I understand that religion gives comfort to some. I feel sad that people are so weak that they need an imaginary crutch to support themselves, but if that is what they need, at least they do have it.
The rest of us have to make do with bucking up and getting on with it.
"I feel sad that people are so weak that they need an imaginary crutch to support themselves,"
Dang, Pc. That was pretty insulting, and really hard not to take personally.
Why do you need to say things like that to someone who isn't hurting anybody, or even trying to imply that his belief makes him any better than anyone else?
religion not hurting anybody Jeff?
in a pluralistic society when people polarizing along religious lines and fight each other does it not hurt?
may not be for the believers but, it hurts, for me.
a crutch is something used by a handicapped person to support himself to walk
religion is really a crutch of the emotionally immature. instead of findings solutions for the problems they turn to sky daddy and let things take its natural course and put blame on something else. its just like the crutches except that it is not material but psychological.
an man who use crutches use it out of necessity while a believer use it out of choice-to remain a child, to never want to grow up.
I'm sorry that mentioning your dependency on imaginary beings causes you to feel insulted. Perhaps you should think carefully about why you feel that way. I suspect you realize how silly your beliefs actually are and are feeling embarrassment rather than insult.
PC, even though I agree with you that religion is a crutch, I don't believe it is necessary, or helpful, to condescend to everyone who professes their belief in God.
I have no sympathy for those who use religion to support their intolerance toward others, and I've never seen any evidence that Jeff is in that category. I can understand why Jeff asked you why you felt the need to respond to him the way you did. He is an individual, not a representative of all Christians.
He is an individual who needs imaginary beings for emotional support.
I like Jeff too, but truth is truth. That's not an insult, it is a fact.
But it's really just your perception of what you determine are facts. That's the sum of it.
No, it's not my perception. No gods are logically possible. That's FACT, not opinion. Therefore, people who insist upon believing impossible things are relying upon non-existent support.
Your perception of facts colors everything you write. Everything. It's obvious to all of us. You are not devoid of emotion, and therefore, those emotions color the facts and how you perceive and interpret them. If it were not so, you would only stick to facts, but you don't. You color all your writings with your opinion of facts, and your opinion of others perceptions.
Example: you take joy in antagonizing and at least mildly insulting most people. There is nothing factual about this behavior of yours.
If people feel belittled by me pointing out their irrational beliefs, that is their issue, not mine. There is no reason for me to keep quiet because insecure people feel embarrassed that their silliness is laid bare.
"I'm OK, you're OK" is apparently your philosophy. I don't agree.
I agree with you on the facts, but not the presentation. :-)
"What the world needs is more geniuses with humility, there are so few of us left." -- Oscar Levant
"I'm sorry that mentioning your dependency on imaginary beings causes you to feel insulted."
I'm not communicating clearly. You don't believe in God and view him as imaginary. That's cool. You even say to me I'm using my belief in what you regard as an imaginary being as a crutch. That's cool, too.
Where I take issue is your characterization of me as a weak person, not because I yield to temptation, not because I've gone along with the crowd when I ought to have defied it, or something else that would indicate weakness of personality, but merely because I believe in a God and draw strength from this belief.
It's this kind of thing that get most believers up in arms. Really, it's no different from the smug superiority that a lot of believers seem to have toward unbelievers. "I believe in God," say the believers, "Therefore, I'm somehow better than those who don't"
"I don't believe in God," say the non-believers, "Therefore, I'm cleverer, smarter, stronger, some other way superior to those who do."
I like you, too, PC.
And I freely admit that my faith defies logic. It totally does! That's why it's not called science.
But if I'm not hurting anyone, why is my belief (or unbelief) even important to you?
Why do you need to draw strength, Jeff? Do you see that you are aware of this yourself?
Same reason anyone needs to psyche themselves up for something that's going to be hard: they think it's going to be hard, and they worry they might not be up to it. Some people get psyched up by smashing their helmets together, or listening to loud music, or whatever. If it helps them get their game on, good for them.
I don't need to "draw strength". I have strength.
We aren't talking about concentrating or studying or anything like that: you "draw strength" from your imaginary fantasy father figure. You must feel that you NEED that strength, which implies weakness.
It's not real weakness, of course: you had the strength all along. But you think you are weak.
You might be under-valuing just what the harm of religion is. The Assemblies of God might appear to be a typical Christian denomination, but Jim Jones and the People's Temple came from them! They even got an award from President Jimmy Carter's wife, before they went all funny. This should shake people's faith in what is a "harmless" religion and what is not. Who can tell? Plus we are only scratching the surface about child-molestations everywhere, and the Catholic Church in particular has MILLIONS of deaths on its conscience in Africa from banning condoms i.e. letting AIDS run rampant, from its failure to FACE REALITY.
Let us therefore give a total accounting about how religions hurt people. Atheists are only too able to tell people if they will listen.
Well, you MIGHT be right, but I prefer to believe that the good that religion can provide at least balances this stuff off.
Yes, we both understand that all that good doesn't need to come from religion, but it may be true that some people simply will not see any other reason to do good, so I think we need to give it some credit.
If people were less screwed up emotionally, maybe we could have a godless society, but I don't think that is on any near horizon. Some people simply need to believe and it CAN make them better people. It's sad, but I think it is true just the same.
I never said that religion, full stop, was harmless. People use their religion as an excuse to do all kinds of unspeakable things to each other.
I don't, though, so mine is harmless. Unless you think I'm somehow being harmed (or harming people) without my knowledge?
This is how it was for me, too. I never believed. It made no rational sense to me, even as a child, and listening to adults at church always gave me an uneasy feeling, like I was watching a child being seduced by a pedophile. I know that sounds awful, but it describes the way I felt at the time.
Ayup. It scared me, too.
I think it was because here were adults acting irrationally. Adults were not supposed to do that - we looked up to them, they were the source of truth and protection, and here they were yapping on about impossible things. Were they insane? What was wrong with them? If we couldn't depend on adults, there certainly was no one else - so we were suddenly alone, without anyone responsible to turn to.
I think that was it.
I've read some of your hubs and you have never been able to explain with precision why you don't believe; however, what you're good at- is belittling others.
I am a believer, and until someone can prove without a doubt, how the world is in perfect sync; how the birds know when to fly south- or how we, the animals, plants and all life forms run on and have an intricate bodily system by 'accident' I'll remain a believer, because, I'd rather die and find out I was wrong as a believer; than die and find out I was wrong as a non-believer.
Pascal's argument combined with the Watchmaker nonsense.
We CAN and HAVE explained all those things.
So you want perfect knowledge of science but are satisfied with never getting the slightest shred of proof of God?
My own unbelief was the inevitable result of applying skepticism and critical thought to what I had been indoctrinated with as a child and to other religious claims in general. I had a rather long deconversion, several years of drifting in and out of various beliefs until I realized that I had no good reason to believe any of it.
Thanks for answering. I'm always interested in why someone does or does not subscribe to a certain line of thought. I appreciate your answer a great deal, and your civil tone as well.
same with my case. first i thought christianity is the only truth(from my parents), i believed in unquestionably. but when as i grew up i came in contact with other religions, which said about god in similar lines but disagreed with christianity. so i studied more, found that what ever religions say is just to cater to emotional needs of people. there can never be a proof nor rational explanation for god and most of the properties that is attributed to god is just our wish and the things we are supposed to get is thing we will regret if we really get it
I went through a similar journey of my own - except,unlike you, I was not raised in a Christian home, rather a very cosmopolitan home, and left completely to my own devices where religion/spirituality was concerned. It's such a unique and personal journey either to or from belief or disbelief.
Thanks for sharing.
The default position is not to believe anything. At some point cave-men started to believe in an afterlife where people turned into invisible spirits. We know because people started to be buried with precious hand-worked tools whereas before the tools were kept upon death for the benefit of the living.
We must realize that we have been kept for thousands of years in a very severe system of religious coercion. But then came secular-inspired human rights, and a society based on the rules of evidence rather than dictates, and religion lost its power to frighten people into conformity. People realized NOBODY HAD ACTUALLY TALKED TO GOD, and not even the leaders had. People realized there was explosive growth understanding the REAL reasons for things in the natural world, whereas religion has not given us a single piece of real knowledge, just dressed-up stories little-different from the cave-men of long ago. It is a realization that will convince people, if they are free to make the consideration in their adult years and are not canalized into banality.
I used to believe, because indoctrinated since childhood. I've written some hubs about how I came to disbelieve
As you seem to genuinely want answers to these questions.
1. I do not believe because it is irrational nonsense. A god is impossible and makes no sense at all. I simply cannot suspend reason far enough to accept "majik" as the answer to life's mysteries. No choice involved.
As to rejecting christianity - which is I assume the placebo you have taken - yes I chose to reject that for a number of reasons, not least of which is the passive aggressive martyr-complex it promotes in it's followers and the 2,000 year history of abuse.
2. You are the one doing the attacking but unaware of the fact. I do not like being told I am incapable of determining ration and reason. Which is what you do when you tell me that "What seems irrational and unfathomable to you is different from what seem irrational and unfathomable to me."
The bible clearly tells me I am a fool for not believing and many believers do this also. I am either a fool - or purposefully denying this god-thing for selfish reasons.
Your beliefs are destructive and hold us back as a species. Who knows where we would have been if Christianity had not destroyed all knowledge for 1500 years in a world-wide Crusade? It is only the last few hundred years we have managed to break away from the chains of ignorance your religion attempts to inflict on us. Sadly this may be the ultimate cause of our destruction and our development as a species may have been irreparably compromised. A bit like keeping a child locked up for 25 years and then suddenly giving him the keys to a Ferrari and a machine gun.
Your religion teaches that we are incapable of knowing right from wrong without a god to tell us. This was a mistake because it has left the bulk of our society in a dilemma. They have been taught not to make moral decisions or develop their own ethics - yet the ethics in the bible are sadly out of date, and most believers do not actually believe - they have just been told that they do. Therefore they have no moral compass.
Just remember - when I express a negative opinion on your religion and point out the irrational nature of your beliefs - I am not "attacking " you personally - I am "attacking," the willful ignorance christianity perpetuates.
Very well said. I often find it interesting that there is little to no understanding of the ACTUAL teaching of Christianity among those who dispute it OR among those who attempt to perpetuate it.
As to your point in statement two, I attack no one. I did not say that anyone of you is incapable of determining what is rational. Unfortunately, being human is quite a subjective experience, and we FEEL quite differently about many things. For example, rationally, it can be said that a certain action is safe. One person may choose to participate in that activity because it has been scientifically proven that the activity poses no threat to their well being. Another person may say it's flat out crazy, and choose not to participate. That's all I meant by that statement.
I am quite knowledgeable about the teachings of Christianity - I find them to be offensive and damaging to the individual as well as society at large.
Believing as you do is an irrational act - the bible itself claims to be beyond reason and rational thought. So we both agree as to what is rational.
Your observation that one may see something as rational where another does not is not applicable in this case.
I am quite capable of determining what is or is not rational. Your beliefs are not rational. This is not simply a case of two opposing and equally valid viewpoints. We probably both agree it is not reasonable or rational to jump out of an airplane for pleasure - just because some one chooses to do it does not make it rational, what it means is they have a desire to do this that is stronger than rational thought.
Any more than you deciding to believe in a god becomes rational because you say we both have different standards as to what is or is not rational. We do not. Please do not insult my intelligence any further by suggesting that this is the case, again. I consider this to be an attack on my ability to reason. Thanks.
My apologies if you felt attacked. That was not my intention. Thank you for defending your position, as well as addressing the original question.
No need to apologize. I understand you were not aware how offensive it is to be told I am incapable of reason and rational decision making.
And I am sure we now both agree that your decision to believe is irrational rather than simply 2 different versions of "rational."
Not a problem. As long as you do not try and persuade me that your decision to believe is as equally rational as mine to not believe in the Invisible Super Being - we do not have a problem going forwards. We both agree that your decision is not rational and mine is - how polite is that?
I agree to disagree with you. And to remain silent about that fact moving forward.
So - you did not really want an answer then? You still insist on attacking me by suggesting I am incapable of making a rational decision?
Little wonder your beliefs cause so many wars.
Pardon me. I meant to say that you are indeed the most rational, level-headed, and reasonable man on the planet and that to disagree with you is nothing short of insanity. So sure, I agree with you wholeheartedly.
It's the evangelical nature of Christianity that puts many off. Where did Christians get the idea that converting others to their faith earns them any rewards?
Do we GET rewards?
I didn't know that.
I would have thought eternal life was reward enough in itself.
That was actually my point. A Christian earns no reward in making someone agree with his/her point of view. The mistaken belief among some Christians is that they do. The mistaken belief among Nonbelievers is that the mission of the Christian in sharing their story is win said rewards.
I chose not to believe because when I challenged the words of the local priest I was punished and lied to by him and many others.
In my life time I have wandered the world and been to many places including the so called Holy Land as well as some deeply religious places, and for me they were some of the most God forsaken places of all.
I could never understand the demanded rituals and prayer sessions other than as instruments of control.
When I was old enough I made a point to seek out the truth behind the myths and to find it you have to virtually go back to when mankind started to walk upright and wonder at the things around him. Especially powerful natural things like earth quakes, great storms and thunder and lightning and so on.
From there it isn't hard to see the invention of Super Beings who must be invisible but they are there fighting and using such terrible weapons...
From there to God or Gods... To Religions to worship them.. to sacrifices to appease them.... need I go on ?
To me it just seem far more realistic and logical than the centuries of cult and myth handed down through ritual, and in many cases pain of death by the various church forces. Centuries of self preservation made it a habit.
Of course, by the time you get up to the head banging Evangelical Fundamentalist and Seven Day Adventist, Creationist Loony Tune Mob... then I know my version has to be the right one !
It's a two way street. Believers, you'll find by reading the threads, don't have any gas pains about attacking nonbelievers, whether provoked first or not. The hypocrisy is that believers are supposed to turn the other cheek. That doesn't seem to happen much.
Nonbelievers attack at about the same frequency as believers, as far as I can tell. It has a lot more to do with personality and histrionic behavior than it does with whether or not you believe in God.
Define "attack". Are we attacking you or your ludicrous beliefs?
That is the conclusion that I've reached as well, Daniel. Hypocritical behavior is not exclusive to either believers or nonbelievers. It's exclusive to members of the human race.
And, to add slightly, it is about members of the human race who are prone to emotional spews and some histrionic behavior with perhaps at least a small addiction to drama. There are still quite a few in the human race, however, that seem to be able to answer questions, arguments, etc, quite rationally without attacks. The whole thing is an odd thing to watch, actually.
Generally the more vehement the response, the greater the level of personal insecurity. They cover insecurity by defense. You can see it among all kinds of people with all kinds of beliefs (or no beliefs at all—if that's possible).
Attacking is about how we feel about ourselves, not so much how we feel about others. It has nothing to do with belief systems.
Additionally, argument without attack, based on facts and information devoid of such emotional spew is actually incredibly healthy for personal growth. Questioning one's belief systems is actually necessary to avoid stagnation of the mind and body. But stagnation actually feels safe to most people. Hence, defending superstitious beliefs and traditions for many people becomes more important than leaving the comfort zone of stagnation.
If believers were to really strip out some of the tripe that some atheist spew, they would learn a lot. And the reverse is true: if atheists would strip out the hell fire and damnation, they may be able to connect with themselves and feel a little more secure, thus reducing the need for emotional spew. It's the same on both sides. And meeting in the middle is not necessarily what is supposed to happen. Evaluation, education and enlightenment would be the purpose. But that seems pretty much wasted because of the defense of insecurities, which are in and of themselves, a lie, a non-truth.
I'm quite secure. And I don't need imaginary god-things to make me feel that way.
But I bet it makes you feel good to pretend that people without your touchy -feely, "let's not insult anyone's beliefs" attitudes are inferior to you.
Damn. And I thought I was obnoxious. I can learn a lot here.
You need just a touch more arrogance. It's the crowning touch, the extra polish that really ticks off the theists. They HATE confident people.
Oh - I know. I thought I had it down. But - I am English and we rarely stray into arrogance. More a quiet, unshakable confidence that stems from an innate superiority that we don't like to talk about. Unlike yourself - of course. I see you like to talk about it. A lot.
It's partly just to aggravate them more, of course. There is nothing like arrogance and swagger to get a theist's blood boiling. It's the meekness training - the little lambs of Sky Daddy.
It's for their own good. They need to see that people really can stand up on their own two feet.
You tend to write a lot of uselessness, nonetheless. You are a complete and utter failure in gaining a single person who otherwise has disagreed with you, to now agree. So on a factual basis, you're wasting your time in the religion forums.
But then, I don't see either side gaining any converts. The score is still zero to zero.
I'm not trying to convert anyone. Oh, sure, I might like to plant some seeds and hope they would grow, but I don't expect them to.
I believe I explained why I am here at some length. What's your excuse?
OK, I read through this thread and I want you to know that this is exactly what I am talking about. This woman (I assume it is a woman by the gentle nature of the posts) has to be the kindest, gentlest soul I've read on these sites. And now it appears you have all run her off by badgering her. That is just so sad. I had just met her and I really liked her.
Do you have any idea how boring you would find the forums if you didn't have us to mess with? I don't think you realize it or not, but this is probably therapeutic for you in some way. I know it is for me. I'm so much nicer to the world after a few hours of posting back and forth with you.
Really? That's all you've got as a response to your EPIC FAIL in conversion rate to your way of thinking? Your utterly wasted verbiage and rants?
I come for the entertainment. Most of the dialog here is completely irrelevant to me, but entertaining.
How is it a fail if it was never my intent?
I don't feel I wasted my time. Practicing religion is certainly a waste; pointing that fact out never is.
Then simply, it's a waste, isn't it. There's no other rational, logical reason for it.
Not to worry, I'm tired of this thread. On to other things.
I previously gave a very detailed answer as to why I do this. It's all rational and logical.
Considering that the vast majority of all believers were indoctrinated as children into their parents religion, there was never a choice made by the individual, hence the only choice available to the believer to make is that of breaking the cycle of indoctrination, not only for themselves but for their children as well, and so on...
If one is not indoctrinated when they are children, they very well may have had the opportunity to study religions in order to see their various beliefs systems, creation stories and rituals, comparing them to the defunct belief systems already recognized as mythical and superstitious, observing that the current set of religions practiced today bear little difference if any at all to those considered myths.
The logical fallacy made in criticizing religions, the same fallacy made here in the OP, is that it isn't the people themselves being attacked, it is their religious ideologies that are attacked.
Gods and religions and other assorted myths, legends, and stories are outdated. Silly superstitions from an outdated and fearful society. Religion is the original politics. Controlling people through fear.
You may have noticed that I have not replied to your query.
The reason? I cannot consider a chat about "belief" in a subject that can only be 'imagined" in the minds of a very infantile species of earthly life, to be interesting.
Belief in this imagined "god thing" has, historically, been the cause of so much death, pain and suffering that I can only view the "abstract concept" of "it" in pure disgust and those who allow it to guide their lives to be members, emeritus, of the lesser evolved of the human species.
...and that's my two-cents worth of thoughtful concern.
If I found a topic to be uninteresting, I don't believe I'd peruse forums about said topic. If I happened to stumble upon such an uninteresting post accidentally, I wouldn't bother to read it. I certainly wouldn't comment on it.
You can have your two cents back, though. While I appreciate the offer, I'm not actually in need of thoughtful concern at the moment.
...but believers in myth are so danged entertaining (disgusting but entertaining) that I just have to read the thoughts of those who are so easily led and impressionable.
When I'm finished for the nite and ready to hit the sac, I just enjoy adding a thought that might elicit another silly comment like yours to put a finis to the fun...:
Thanks for the very thoughtful reply...lol :
God told me he doesn't exist, so I believe him. Actually he also told me to tell everyone else he doesn't exist too. He figures everyone needs to forget about him for a while. Forget all the religions, dogma and myths. Then maybe we have a chance to find him later on, if he's still hanging around.
Seriously though, I became an atheist exactly due to that reason. I figured out that the only way I would find god, if he existed, was to start from scratch, not even assume he was there and start over. You might say god suggested it. But I wouldn't.
So I started out small by helping to create a thriving religion for atheists. I discovered there is nothing but god. The problem was that when I really thought about it, I found out that if there is nothing but god, there is no god because the word god requires that there is something that is not god.
God is thought of as that which is most high. But if all is god then nothing is higher or lower objectively. The word god becomes a tautology.
Now I don't believe anything at all, and found out there is no need to. If it is a fact I accept it as such. If it is not, it's just speculation. Believing speculation is not very smart, and believing a fact is redundant. So there is no need to believe anything.
Do I believe that? No. It's a fact.
So if you want to find god, become an atheist.
No, I am not crazy. I just forgot to take my meds tonight. Or shall I blame the bottle of Jamison? Bad...... Bad.......bottle of Jamison.
In any case, it's all true.
No god. Don't make me post this..... Oh s**t.
I don't believe, as I understand existence is futile.
I didn't choose to disbelieve. My disbelief arose gradually, as part of a cumulative transformation. I might one day believe again. If I had a BELIEVE switch with "On/Off" settings, I don't know which way I'd toggle it.
Actions are rational or irrational- those who form a belief in a god are irrational.
I was once a believer, then I finally got answers to the question I had about my life. Come to find out, life does not require a god to be lived, nor does life require a god to be understood.
Therefore, there is no god.
Secondly, I'm not interested in "why" you asked. I know why you asked and you own words defeat your attempt to understand.
Why do I say that? Because, your belief in a god is so you can be rewarded. Must be nice to be selfish.
No one attacks people, as your post claims. It is the irrational belief in a god that is subject of discussion. If you see anything as an attack on you as a person, then maybe you should get over yourself.
Just a thought.
Let me rephrase. I am not asking in some attempt to convince you not to believe what you do, or rather to believe what you do not.
I once owned a car. Then I moved to a city with excellent public transportation and found I was no longer in need of one to get to my job or to accomplish every day errands. Therefore, there are no cars.
Is that actually the "rational" thought process you're attempting to use in your proof?
And, dear, you don't know me. You're welcome to come to know me, but you have no interest in that. You actually have no idea what my reasons are for believing or not believing in God.
Sadly, people attack one another all the times on these forums. I personally do not feel attacked, because frankly, your opinion of me is not one that I'm too terribly concerned about.
I asked a question because I wanted an honest answer in the hope that I might understand. What seems irrational and unfathomable to you is different from what seem irrational and unfathomable to me. That being said, we both have things we find unbelievable. I simply like to find out why our opinions or beliefs differ.
As for your belief that I'm selfish, I'm terribly sorry that you feel that way. Are you some sort of seer, who knows the ins and outs of my life and behavior?
Must be nice to be omniscient.
And one other thing in regard to calling me selfish and telling me to get over myself...
"If you decide against learning something new each day(and not only from my writing) in life, then you have already lost the battle to gain full control over your life and living the most productive life. It makes for a sad day."
I feel that in making the assumption that I'm selfish, you've very clearly chosen against learning something new - like what another human being might actually be like - and therefore, you must be having a very sad day.
Actually, I learn something everyday, and for you quoting from my own writing isn't a surprise. However, the belief in a god is selfish. You may not be selfish in many of your actions, but the action that created the belief in a god was selfish.
So please. Next time use better words of mine against me, if you want to gain any ground.
This wasn't even on par.
Actually, no your above statement wasn't rational at all. It's ironic you might think so.
I know precisely why you believe in a god, so you can have an afterlife. And for you to say anything different, only means you like to lie.
It's not an opinion of YOU, it's fact about your irrational belief in a god. Do try to stay on topic.
Understand? You're too funny. Most religious only open threads about non-believers, just to mock them.
One view is skewed with religious tripe. And, one is not.
Good to know you have things you find unbelievable. I rarely find anything unbelievable. I guess I'm more open-minded than you, perhaps. Hmmm...?
Because, one is skewed by religious tripe and one is not.
Don't like, you're not sorry about anything. Secondly, I haven't even bothered to share anything, such as a belief or opinion. Your subjective brain is seeing however you choose to see it. Too bad, your mind is clouded with skewed religious tripe, otherwise, you might be better off.
Don't need to be, nor have I claimed to be. I only go by your actions.
Nice condescending statement. Must be nice being blissful to your own actions.
Well, thank you for sharing. Glad you've found an outlet for your genius.
And, maybe "Must be nice to be selfish." isn't a condescending statement after all. I'm terribly sorry that I read it that way.
Thank you for taking the time to steer me in the right direction about why I believe what I do and why I behave as I do. I certainly had no idea of what motivated my thoughts and actions.
Thank goodness there's someone like you out there who can lead me down the right path. I appreciate your time. Please, don't let me waste anymore of it, as I'm sure it's quite precious to the rest of the lost souls like me.
I just want you to know that I think you conducted yourself amazingly well throughout this thread. When I saw you had posted it, I had such hope that someone would provide an answer. Although you were attacked somewhat viciously, and at times it appeared to me, somewhat childishly; you remained calm and accepting. You are truly a credit to the meaning of the word Christian.
For once we agree. That post you quoted is a perfect example of what it is to be Christian.
?? I thought she was nice. What did I miss?
I don't believe but I'm perfectly happy for those who do and if it makes their life better. Most of my very good friends believe and I'm happy for them if it helps them in life.
I was raised in a very open type of family where I was told to find out for myself what to believe. At first I did because most do so I assumed it was so.
After I got older, asked more questions and did my own studying I came to my own realization that there is in fact no higher being or higher anything.
That makes me happy as I am at peace with that. If it would make someone else unhappy then by all means believe. All humans believe in something others don't or think is not true.
I give you kudos for one thing, my friend. You've certainly helped me to realize why I generally avoid online forums. I fully intend to stick to writing, which is the reason I came to HubPages in the first place. I never - EVER - judge a person by my first impression of them. I've come to love people I despised the first time I encountered them. And I've come to struggle with my feelings for people I thought were the bee's knees the first time they graced me with their presence. I am not a sage. I am not a genius. I am only a person - who likes to write and wants to write.
Thanks, though, for the sparkling debate. It was actually a good deal of fun. I think I'll remain silent on the topic from here on out. Your irrefutable logic has made me understand. That was all I was looking for.
I personally dont believe in religious god and I dont mind some one believing in it as long as "my way only way" theme doesnot harm any one...religion is for humans and humans are not for religion...human beings are more important than religion and its god...believing is personal matter and much remain confided in personal domain...
Because I'm from Western Europe, and not from the US, the default position is generally none belief; then we can chose to believe later once we're in a position to know better. I think this a far better perspective from which to start, rather than indoctrinating kids from year dot.
Personally, I don't believe in god because there is not a scrap of evidence for its existence; of any denomination. There is a hell of a lot of evidence which contradicts everything written in religious texts the world over. I don't "attack" anyone for their beliefs unless they are daft about them and try to force them upon me, or let it interfere with science or education for instance. Having said that, cos I'm in the UK, that barely happens.
On a personal note, I know nobody who is religious, none of my family, friends or colleagues (except for those who are immigrants - generally from the Indian Subcontinent). I know absolutely nobody who ever attends a church or temple. I expect it'll pretty much completely peter out in the UK's indigenous population over the next few years. It'll be interesting to see the results of the census this year....
It's quite ineteresting for us to watch the USA go the other way to western Europe in this regard....
You have a point, I'd say. What happens, though, is that even rational adults who claim unequivocal truth in what they say may say it in a way that's a bit harsh. While there is no outright name calling, these forums are filled with people who use words regularly and well. Allusion is easy for most writers, subtlety is frequent. It's more a matter of semantics then. While one may not use a specific word or phrase in arguing their point, their allusions and subtle barbs are understood quite clearly by those to whom they are addressed.
I think there are simply a handful of people on this forum from both sides that choose to be very loud and mouthy about what they think.
Many hundreds of other people from both sides read this stuff, shake their heads or laugh at BOTH sides doing the arguing and go about their lives.
To think that what you read in this forum on ANY subject is the norm for most is very inaccurate.
Once again as for myself, I don't believe in any higher form at all, nothing. But if you do and it makes your life better for it, then great and I'm happy for you.
I can't say I'm "happy" for people who delude themselves. I do understand their needs and I do defend their right to hold those beliefs and teach them to their children.
But I will never ignore them. I will always hold up a mirror so they can see their own irrationality.
This has less to do with anyone's beliefs and more to do with a general lack of accountability when we are cloaked in the anonymity of an online forum.
Believers claim the moral high ground and atheists claim the intelligence high ground. It's an endless debate -- there will never be a resolution.
The good news is that, despite what you read in the forums, most people don't dwell on the argument because, quite frankly, we just don't care. No one has proof of their claim to know the unknowable and until that happens (never) lives will be lived and hopefully lessons will be learned...such as respect for others.
Sorry about the sermon. Now, let us prey...
We do have proof that gods are logically impossible - mountains of it.
But theists believe in magic, not logic.
Nor are all of us anonymous. I'm a real person, that's my real face and it is very easy to find my real email and real telephone number. I'm not "cloaked" at all.
I'm glad you're comfortable in your beliefs.
Please, just don't tell me about them.
Stay out of the religious forums and do not read any of my hubs and you'll never have to hear a word.
Your first request, "No"
Your second request "OK"
It wasn't a request. It was advice to help you avoid hearing things you don't like hearing.
"We do have proof that gods are logically impossible - mountains of it."
We surely do! God makes no logical or scientific sense. None whatsoever.
But God isn't bound by logic: it says so right on the label.
Science may yet figure out how God works.
Until then, I'll keep my faith.
So you believe in illogical and impossible things.
And you REALLY aren't embarrassed to say that?
What you should be saying is that you have an emotional need to indulge in fantasy that you know is not true.
Nothing wrong with that - fantasy is great escape.
Just remember that it isn't real.
"And you REALLY aren't embarrassed to say that?"
No, I'm really not.
I'd be embarrassed to say that my illogical and seemingly impossible thing requires you to do as I tell you.
"What you should be saying is that you have an emotional need to indulge in fantasy that you know is not true."
Aha, but I don't know it's not true; I merely know that it's illogical and unscientific. So is my wife's love for me. There are plenty of folks it made more sense for her to be with, but she loves me. It's not logical, it's not scientific, and I can't measure it, but it's there. And it's awesome!
"Just remember that it isn't real."
You could be right.
I'd never try to convince you otherwise; such things can't be proven.
You are wrong about that.
I can prove that your god could not be the Prime Mover and could not be anything conceptually different from you and I: it has to be dependent upon some physics.
But that's logic, and you like to pretend that the thing you imagine doesn't need logic. As someone else said recently, your god can draw nine sided squares and make parallel lines meet. He's complete nonsense, but you don't care: you NEED him.
"I can prove that your god could not be the Prime Mover and could not be anything conceptually different from you and I: it has to be dependent upon some physics."
If you want to start from the premise that God is not God (that is, neither omniscient nor omnipotent), sure. But that's not what I was talking about.
I merely meant that I can't prove or disprove what someone "knows in their heart." That's all.
I don't believe in God. And definitely think the bible is a load of manipulative text, rewritten over time for the benefit of the authors/leaders of the age (That's not to say it doesn't contain some great morals that everyone should stick too).
But I don't think ANYONE can rule out that there might be something else other than the physical world our limited senses allow us to experience.
If no-one could see, and suddenly someone could. How would that person even begin to explain what he was experiencing.
To me this seems like the only logical conclusion .... no one knows for sure, so why waste your life trying to tell people it's one way or the other!
Spend your time trying to get others to lead a morally sound life. Don't lie, Don't steal, Don't kill, Do be kind, Do think of others, live in harmony - don't try an convince others your way is best etc etc.
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