tow people, we will call them "A" and "B". "A" believes in GOD and salvation through CHRIST alone. "B" believes there is no GOD. if "A" is wrong, neither "A" or "B" will lose much when they die. if "B" is wrong, "B" loses everything while "A" gains everything. so is it better to be "A" or to be "B"?
That is to assume, first of all, that these are the only variables existent.Christianity isn't the only religion which states that if said person B does not believe in it, they will die.
That is also to assume that the rightnes or wrongness of one's belief is based on whether or not you will supposedly lose something in believing it.
When one is quiet and trusts the truth one knows, one finds that it does not matter. God is the true self trying to see through all the ego has to blind true seeing.
Since this is true, both sides are wrong. If my religion was so true, it would not matter who was right or wrong, for I would, for myself, have all the answers I would need. I know that what I tell you can mean nothing to you, but it is only the truth as I have observed it.
Your OP statement is a flawed variation of Pascal’s Wager. It competes with Anselm's Ontological Argument for being the most famous argument in the philosophy of religion.(1) You destroy the argument, however, by including ‘and salvation through CHRIST alone” in “A.” Buy so doing, you introduce the possibility that both “A” and “B” might be wrong and, therefore, your query “is it better to be ‘A’ or to be ‘B’" becomes a moot point. The logic and reasoning of Pascal’s wager only leads to a preferred choice if one or the other outcome is certain. Choosing between “A” or “B” is meaningless if both are wrong.
except that i am asking a specific question and for a reason. i am not asking is it better to believe in "a" god or not believe in one...i am asking whether it is better to believe in "THE" GOD, or not to believe in HIM? i often wonder why people would prefer to risk it if they end up wrong. if i end up dying and there is no GOD, then i simply die and that is that. if a non believer ends up dying and discovering GOD and all HE said is true...they risk a great deal then just dying. i asked this question hoping someone can tell me why they feel the risk is worth it.
You see it as a "taking a risk" because you are looking at their situation from your viewpoint, not theirs.
From the view of a nonbeliever, there is no such risk. There is no such dilemma. There is no choice. You have arbitrarily created a situation which in reality does not apply and the cicrcumstances under which a believer will not find himself.
They simply do not have a reason to believe in the God which you present. They therefore do not believe it. Simple.
You don't just say "oh I'll believe in this because it's not as risky...." People believe something only if it is true, not if it presents a possible bad outcome for not believing in it. If I believe in something because there is some "chance" that something bad will happen, that's not believing in it because I think it's true. That's not even believing in something. A person can't logically believe in something they feel is inaccurate.
If you "believe" in something for any reason other than thinking it's true, then it's not really belief.
what you say makes sense AshtonFirefly. i suppose it is like people who feel death is something that will happen to them in the far unseeable future, then they get killed in their 20's. to them death wasnt real, or real enough to be a concern to them. non believers cant comprehend there might be a true or real risk simply because they cannot comprehend that GOD might be real. thank you for your great answer.
I agree with you, Ashton. There is no risk if there is no expectation of a benefit for choosing one or the other outcome.
The OP actually agrees with Pascal and is looking for some kind of explanation from those who do not. Nevertheless, most prominent authors in the field, even some critical of Pascal’s Wager, agree with his conclusion. Wagering that God exists is rationally and mathematically sound if Pascal's decision matrix is combined with both a positive probability that God exists and the decision-making theories of rational action.
There are sound arguments that betting on the existence of God is a good deal even for those unable or unwilling to believe God really exists. It makes for interesting reading.
"B" obviously. "A" wastes an entire lifetime worshiping and obeying the many gods that don't exist while "B" lives their life with purpose and fulfillment, learning and understanding the world around them.
"A" believes - "B" thinks.
"A" loses big time.
the trouble with certain atheists is their assumption that those who choose to believe in a god/The GOD can't seem to think or reason for themselves. you also assume that we waste our lives living in some kind of funk. i dont believe Mother Theresa would consider her life a waste, nor anyone who knew her or whom she helped and comforted. have you done as much for society as she has? i understand the world around me far better than you can possibly understand it. but then, you dont believe so that is a moot point as you would never accept my understanding of the world to be valid. you are just as close minded as the believers whom you accuse of being so.
That appears to be a fact for the most part.
Completely and totally.
LOL! Are you comparing yourself to Mother Theresa? Are you saying there aren't people who go around helping others that aren't Christians?
You have no understanding of the world outside of your holy book, that is obvious.
Some posters are troubled sockpuppets and they should be ignored. Their aim is to disrupt serious discussions about subjects they are incapable of understanding so they troll the forums looking for people they can insult. If they had any respect for themselves, they would understand the importance of respecting others. They are troubled, uncaring people who hide behind their anonyminity while looking for attention. If you acknowledge their presence, they will never go away.
It's always better to be a winner therefore choose "A" if your right your a winner if your wrong you lose nothing.
Emile: How can it be cheating? I didn't set the parameters of the forum question I only gave my answer and since it is my answer for me personally I can
never be wrong, nor cheat.
It's cheating if you simply choose option A in order to 'win'. That's like playing roulette. You run through the motions in hopes of a final payout when the wheel stops spinning. I doubt that is what any deity has in mind. But, I fear you are correct and that is what is on the minds of many who put their hopes in a heaven.
What if the christian is wrong and gets punished by the islamic god?
Nothing personal Dave, but you have lost so much already, right or wrong.
And if both do not believe in the correct god they both suffer if the deity is as vengeful as the Christian god.
That is a very common fallacious question more commonly known as "Pascals wager".
It is fallacious for the reason that it falsly assumes there are only two options. A: believe in the christian god, or B: Dont believe in the christian god.
Of course this isnt true. What if the christian is wrong and ends up in the hell of another god that he never heard of?
What if the atheist gets off scott free while the christian gets punished for worshipping a false god?
Forgive me, Jesus, but I am inclined to challenge your statement. Pascal’s Wager makes no false assumptions nor does it connect God to any religion or philosophy. He intentionally defined the wager upon one of two definite outcomes, God exists or does not exist, and secondly,the perceived benefit for believing in God was infinite. He discusses how adding other outcomes, while possible, would have a negative impact on the probability and the risk/benefit calculations. As stated in an earlier post, most prominent authors in the field, even some critical of Pascal's Wager, agree with his conclusion. Wagering that God exists is rationally and mathematically sound if Pascal's decision matrix is combined with both a positive probability that God exists and the decision-making theories of rational action. (1)
That's a silly forum question. What religion is "b"? Now there is your problem.
What's the harm in believing in Zeus? If I'm wrong nothing happens, if I'm right I make it to heaven, right?
you have the right to believe as you will. you, nor anyone else must answer to me for their choices. i asked a simple hypothetical question designed to hopefully get others to consider the options.
No, it's a loaded "hypothetical" question directed at non believers. The question is misleading. It implies a 50/50 scenario, God or no God . The only way it could be 50/50 is if there was only one religion.
I have a "hypothetical" question. Person "A" doesn't believe in man-made religion. Person "B" believes in Christianity. Person "C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z" believes in another man-made religion, a religion with equal historical evidence as Christianity. Would it be better to liberate yourself from man-made religion with choice "A" or to choose "B-Z" and hope you were born into the right one?
If one of the million different religions were correct, getting into heaven would be like playing the lottery. FYI, I don't play the lottery. Just doesn't make sense.
None above, there are many other ways to God, without threats
I think B wins. If A believes in a god so heinous that he would hide, so that some people lose out, A is screwed. Who wants to spend eternity with a sorry excuse of a deity?
Why even be concerned about B? B has made the decision and seems happy with it. It's no loss to A and A always wins. God makes the decision anyway.
I choose "C". Actually, since this is all hypothetical, I choose "Z". On second thought, I'm really hungry, so I'll take one from each column. What I can't stomach, I'll give away to the homeless.
If B is right, then they can live a life without the fear of God and of eternal damnation. They then disappear into the eternal nothingness as does person A. Both end up in the same place, so it makes little difference in the scheme of thibngs.
who wins in this situation?
Those who believe in ONE- the Creator God will win; Jesus was never a god or son of god.
Relaxe and accept that what is true for some will never be true for others. I believe that what is true for you is right for you. But at some point or another, if you don't start thinking for yourself, your religion will destroy your reallity and you will suffer greatly for it.
Perhaps spirituality is not about "winning." This is the same rhetoric that has plagued humankind for centuries and created problems such as war and slavery. I don't believe that contra-positive logic or the like can really be used to deepen truth and, in essence, spirituality.
I am obliged to respect this as your opinion; however, since you asked a question, I feel it's safe to assume you are open to suggestions in possibly re-evaluating the "A" or "B" context. If you are relaying your opinion based upon a Judeo-Christian context, then it may help to consider the meaning behind Romans 8:28: "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
Truth is not something an individual owns. It is something revealed to him/her over time and revelation. Each person is given their own revelation and should be respected as such. I personally believe in Yeshua Hamashiach. But, I'm not concerned if someone disagrees with me, and I don't practice "converting" people and vice versa. A life is the greatest testament to any spirituality, which almost any philosopher from Gandhi and the like have said in a varying form from time to time. You are on the right track because questions are greater truth than answers. Perhaps ask yourself why it matters to you whether or not "A" or "B" is better. (I pretty much said the same thing as mischeviousme).
thank you for the plug... I have said it time and again, though I don't think so elloquently. You definitely have a way with words and I am glad to have met an open minded, rational person. Thank you
Inability to accept the mystic experience is more than an intellectual handicap. Lack of awareness of the basic unity of organism and environment is a serious and dangerous hallucination. For in a civilization equipped with immense technological power, the sense of alienation between man and nature leads to the use of technology in a hostile spirit---to the "conquest" of nature instead of intelligent co-operation with nature" Alan Watts
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