I have been trying to find a term for someone who is neither theist, atheist, or agnostic. For the longest time, I have considered myself an agnostic, but I'm not sure if that's the best definition. To me, a more suitable term would be an "eclectic" but I rarely see that term.
I believe god may exist, but also think he may not, as it's currently unknowable. I believe in the Big Bang Theory for the most part; however, I think it's possible god may have created (but it's currently unknowable)
Also, if there are multiple universes (not proven), in theory, perhaps god exists in some universes, but does not in others... There is a book called "Parallel Worlds"
I have taken an interest in science related subjects like astronomy and cosmology; but I also like esoteric subjects like Astrology & Numerology & Law of attraction. And of course, I like theoretical science; something that uses facts to try and prove something, but may not be true 100%.
Sometimes I pray knowing there may be no god or "higher being" but I do it anyway -- better safe that sorry I always think. And it's not like I am going to die praying for a 30 seconds.
Just what am I? I wish the world had a term for someone in the middle; from what I hear being agnostic is not exactly a middle-ground.
Perhaps I am a PARADOX?
Unknowing, But Open to Possibilities
UBOP Yep, you are a good ol' UBOP!
Yay for UBOPs !
Technically you are a weak atheist, as is everyone who does not believe in god (as you know, strong atheists are those who believe god does not exist).
But aside from that, you claim neither faith, nor disbelief in god and you believe there is currently no evidence for either. Isn't that the classic definition of an agnostic?
Either there is a God,
or there isn't.
Both possibilities are
If there is a God,
we better find out who He is
and find out
what He wants
and do what He says.
If there is no God,
we're in trouble –
around the Sun right now
at 66,000 miles an hour,
and nobody's in charge
(Quote is from a Russian astronomer while visiting an American university and is from the book 'God Doesn't Believe in Atheists' by Ray Comfort.)
And here are 209 seconds about multiple universes:
Perhaps a weak agnostic or eclectic agnostic? No reason you can't make up what you think best describes what would describe your beliefs.
What is great, is that you are thinking about it, and really thinking it through from what seems different angles. That seems fair to me, a good thing.
I believe in higher powers and I believe in Christ in my life. But I also believe in science, things like cosmology and quantum theory, even if I do not understand it all. Both the spiritual and the physical are important to me. But I do not see this as a paradox. I like the term that the physicist Niels Bohr uses when describing the wave/ particle duality of light; he calls it 'complimentarity'. I like it better than 'coexist'. And I do not think a term or a title is necessary - I avoid using any '-ists' or 'isms' when I describe what I believe or do not believe. I guess I am an anti-ist-ism-iist! Oops!
This is Interesting. I think the best response is a Theist due to the impossibility of the contrary. Listen to William Lane Crib and Kent Hovind.. you will thank me later,
Theist? I do not believe in God 100% because I feel it is not knowable yet.
A lot of people debate whether or not a God(s) exists. Quite frankly, I think a far more important question to ask is: "What is God?" or "What are the properties that make up god?" (or any God)
If I were to go back in time with today's technology; I could claim to be a magical healer, whereas I was actually just using advanced technology & medicine. I know this sounds weird, but if there is any advanced life form out there in the universe besides ourselves that are capable of doing "god like things" -- that does not mean that they are God; they just have advanced technology.
How can we determine & identify what God is if we do not understand the properties that mark his existence?
I know that sounds weird, but I believe there may come a day when people are going to believe in "false gods" or "false prophets" when in fact it will just be an illusion under the guise of advanced technology. People have already believed in false prophets etc..
I'll check those people out you mentioned.
WIlliam Lane Crib? Who is that?
I think you might have meant William Lane Craig, and Kent Hovind. For me personally, the two don't belong in the same category. I can't take Hovind very seriously at all, and IMO, Bill Craig is incredibly intelligent, one of my favorite thinkers of our day.
Agnostic: a person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God or of anything beyond material phenomena; a person who claims neither faith nor disbelief in God.
Sounds like this term fits what you describe of yourself pretty well. Is it that there are stereotypes or unfitting assumptions about agnostics that you don't believe fit you?
Small correction: an agnostic won't tell you that we can never know about god, other dimensions, hell, heaven or anything else. The future is unknown, after all, and one day we might find and visit God's universe if it is there. We could even ask to see the videos He took of the creation.
I'm glad you're open to the possibility of knowing Him someday. One day all will see Him and every knee will bow...
"For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made." (Romans 1:20)
Something that all reasonable, thinking people acknowledge. Just as they acknowledge that no one knows if there is a God to know.
Such comments as your Romans quote - that trees and rocks show there is a god, are grossly insufficient to ever say anyone perceives or knows a god.
They can't "acknowledge" that no one knows if God exists, but can only assume this to be so, and they may only assert truthfully that as far as they are aware, no one knows if God exists. We can't make an affirmative statement regarding something we have NOT experienced. While we can say what we HAVE experienced ourselves (and give our testimony to this), we cannot positively discount the experiences of someone else based simply on a lack of our own similar experience. Simply not having an experience ourselves doesn't invalidate another's experiences, though it is often difficult for us to accept without such an experience ourselves.
We certainly may believe we have alternative explanations for their experiences. So for example, you may believe that those of us who have had supernatural experiences are potentially insane, highly imaginative, confused, and so on; I may believe those who assert experiences with a "god" other than the One True Living God are deceived by the demonic realm, potentially insane, influenced by substances and so on. Nonetheless, until someone has an affirmative experience of their own or they're given revelation from beyond, they cannot conclude much using only the absence of any such experiences in their own life.
It follows that if you acknowledge that God MAY exist, you likewise acknowledge that some MAY have had experience with this God, and you cannot (for the reasons stated above) logically conclude that simply because YOU have had no such experience, NONE have had this experience.
Throughout the ages people have perceived of God based on the full range of His awesome creations, from our solar system to the wonders of the human body, mind and soul. These creations are so astounding and awesome that they would be downright unbelievable if not for the fact that we ourselves are the ones experiencing them and therefore cannot deny them. From this basic perception of God, we seek. And when we seek the One True Living God (rather than false gods) in all earnestness, He will be found by us. "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." (Matthew 7:7)
The things you're saying sound like they fit almost exactly under the category of agnostic... why is it that you feel otherwise?
Agnostic, to me, is the exact "middle" and then on either side of that you have agnostic theists and agnostic atheists, but it doesn't seem you sway to one side more than the other. So yes, agnostic fits you pretty well based on what you've said.
Why not? :All for One and One for All. People are hard enough to understand.
Why do we need labels to feel important or fight over imaginary friends.
It doesn't have anything to do with feeling important, I have no idea where you're getting that from.
It's normal human psychology to want to give things that we think and feel a name. To know that we can relate to others in some way. You don't have to put a label on anything if you don't want to, but the original post said "I have been trying to find a term for..." so clearly he's looking for a name to tack onto it. If you don't like it then you are free to not do it.
A Theist, by definition and practice, is one who believes or adheres to theology. An essential part of that term is theory. Both the sensational and scientific approaches to discovery/enlightenment can be classified under theos or theory / theology from where the term theist comes. They are the same "thing" using opposing parameters to achieve the same result. Both must use Reason, which is amassing information -sensation or equative- and applying it to the idea, thus creating a [hypo]thesis which when put into practice/testability becomes a theory. So, if you use the aforementioned then you could consider yourself a theist.
An Atheist is one who, using the aforementioned, does not want to necessarily achieve the discovery/enlightenment but rather debunk or dispute it -it meaning the hypothesis and those methods used in its practicality. Many refer to atheism as anti-theist, anti-thesis or anti-theory. Oddly, most atheists or those who associate themselves with the term use it incorrectly out of ignorance of what it really means.
An Agnostic, from the root gnostic is one who does not test using the aforementioned -for or anti- but believes intrinsically as a Gnostic, that the road to discovery/enlightenment exists within. That an external quest for enlightenment is futile because we are victims of knowledge. In the case of an agnostic, because a lack of practical application exists beyond the scope of Reason, neither accepts nor rejects the theory or hypothesis. They simply are 'waiting' for something to happen to change their perspective. Usually agnostics wait for experiences to happen before determining if these events lead to or from discovery/enlightenment. Agnostics, by far, are the most interesting of the collective because, by their very nature, are not 'fence dwellers' waiting for one or another part of theology to prove. They see the theories as "interesting" but, again, not practical and too pseudo-external to have any meaningful or significant relevance to their experience.
Why must eveyone fit into those three types! When there is a million parts to our soul
Paloma, not everyone does fit into these three. However, they are the most common titles based on their nature -and practice.
Myself, do not fit into the three titles.
As for there being millions of parts to our soul I do not have an answer for that, as I do not know if the soul has parts and how those parts would be identified. If the soul, meaning the mind as some teach, then the probability of thoughts is seemingly ∞. If meaning the soul as spirit then it is ∞. Who can test such parts or even find them (i.e. eat of the tree of knowledge within). Better to experience the soul than to define its parts, lest it become another form of Theos, another thing to promote the Moral Dilemma.
It's funny, you made a point to say agnostics are not "fence dwellers", when that's a term that comes to mind, as they presently sit on the fence regarding belief in God - uncertain as to whether He exists or not. Some believe it is unknowable, at least presently, and others wait for possible discovery, but will not form an opinion until discovery in their natural state takes place.
Precisely, a natural experience within versus the external theistic approach of sensationalism (miracles, sky parting, fiery chariots) or scientific (mechanics, technology, physics). A true agnostic does not believe that said truth can be attained using theistic parameters, and thus through those mechanisms no deity can possibly be proven to exist. Which is not to say they do not believe in a Creator.
Also to note is Agnostics are the offspring of Gnostic, which means they believe within they possess a "knowing" -a superior understanding and therefore need no external practice, like theistic methods, to prove/disprove said existence of Creator. What is interesting a many eastern philosophies started out this way and changed over time, which include Vedic, Hindu, Buddhist -even early Greco-Roman civilizations. One particular group that is believed to be the earliest Gnostics are the Sumerians, of whom Noah and of course Abram were direct descendants.
At any rate, I suppose an Agnostic would be one who has yet to personally experience the knowing and is waiting for said event to happen. Hence, why they will not altogether dismiss the probability. And yes, I cannot say with any measure of truth they are "fence dwellers" because that would mean they are inherently theists, and by proxy atheists (less the irritating, repetitive, teenager-like, nonsensical argument against the side of theos they come from. Ha!)
"...they believe within they possess a 'knowing' -a superior understanding and therefore need no external practice, like theistic methods..." Believing ourselves to have superior understanding and "knowing" on our own (meaning without God) seems to describe the epitome of human pride and arrogance.
"But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you..." (John 16:13). This is humility, to rely on God's own Spirit for truth and wisdom, and not to consider ourselves to somehow have it apart from the Lord.
Interesting you mention that, as nearly all Gnostic agree that said knowing is -as you say- the Spirit. In other tongues that term is called ruach, ohm, pneuma - the breath of life. To paraphrase the preachers, "you know that you know" and also "having heart knowledge" vs head-knowledge. Means the same thing just in varying forms. There is a consensus that the spirit or BoL is in all...is said knowing.
Another subtle point is, from my own observations and experience with all who believe in Creator, can say with full assurance 98% are more agnostic than theistic, yet seem to prefer appearing theistic through the use of texts and various unnatural applications of theos. Thus the issue arises as to why they have no practical experience. An issue often justified as having a lack of faith. This is refuted by the text, ironically, in the saying to each a measure of faith has been given and that the Spirit/knowing has come to all. The remaining 2% seem to be hiding their experience, for whatever reason. My guess is they fear excommunication by their peers else seen as heretics/blasphemers -aka self-knowing or worse embodiments of Creator, as the man Moshiach also claimed to be...
You say, "There is a consensus that the spirit or BoL is in all...is said knowing". I agree that the "Breath of Life" (BOL) and a spirit is in us all, as God Himself breathed into humans, creating them in His image and making them living "beings". In doing this he distinguished us from all other created things in the earth - we alone create as our Creator God does, and thereby advance in ways no other created thing can. You can stop at this point, having a spirit and the breath of life given by God Himself, or you can go farther. To enter His Kingdom, we must be "born again" - that is, born of the Holy Spirit. Upon accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are given the promised Holy Spirit, who is for the first time placed within us (not to be confused with our own God-designed spirits and beings that already reflected God's image). Those who receive Jesus Christ, and consequently the Holy Spirit, not only have him for this life (for comfort, power, direction, truth, etc.), but may enter into Eternal Life.
While I don't have any idea about the numbers, I agree that some (many) who identify as believers may be more agnostic. Why no experiences for many when the Holy Spirit and a measure of faith have been given to all who believe? While I speak with no known revelation here, I'd say 1) some are yet "infants" who will eventually have such experiences, 2) some only say they believe but they are deceiving others (and perhaps themselves), 3) some don't really grasp what it is that they have believed and they fail to realize that "the power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead is the same power that is at work within them through the Holy Spirit", 4) some are so continually grieving the Holy Spirit (living a life of un-forgiveness or lacking in love, for example) that He cannot or will not manifest in their lives, 5) some, who though given a measure of faith upon believing, have (like any unused gift) lost that measure of faith due to their failure to use it ("To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away." Matthew 25:29, NLT) I can say that in my life I experienced nothing of a supernatural nature while I was walking apart from the Lord for over a decade (though I was still technically a believer), but as soon as He brought me back to Himself, I began experiencing unexpected things that startled and amazed me. They have been greater or lesser depending on the need / the tasks He has put before me, my desire and requests ("How much more will He give of His Holy Spirit to those who ask..." ), my focus on Him (or my distraction from Him), etc.
Those who have experienced the power of the Holy Spirit (and I have no idea of the percentage of them) yet hide it, as you say, likely "fear excommunication". They know they will often experience ridicule, labels of insanity, disbelief on the part of others, and so on. Those of us who speak of it may be those who simply don't care as much if we're labeled and ridiculed, or those who consider it a difficulty worth bearing if it brings light to anyone.
I forgot to add to the post. I sort of believe in Reincarnation. Not going to go into full detail, but I mainly believe in it because of my research related to Big Bang Theory, Supernovas, & Numerology. I've had some extremely strange things occur in my life that coincide with things I have researched. I have more of a preference to believe in reincarnation than heaven and hell. I like the idea of heaven, but if it does not currently exist; I don't want to tantalize my mind thinking of some paradise that does not exist. I think some people believe in heaven because it sounds appealing to them.
The universe is expanding. I think our consciousness is continuing to expand as well.
I guess I am merely a truth seeker who has a preference for some concepts more than others; but I will not believe in most concepts 100% -- even the ones I study more or have a preference for.
Although I cannot say if Jesus Christ existed as the man he was in the Bible, I must say, I like the fact that he had integrity & sincerity (whether he was a regular man like us or had healing powers).
I suppose the most suitable term for me is Agnostic, but my philosophy is Eclectic.
This is great I think. A lot of people don't think things through so carefully, or thoroughly. As for your observance of the reality you live in, and your senses to the other things (the more than meets the eye stuff that you talk of or allude to), I would on your search continue to ask what best explains all of those things. For me, the cause of our reality has to be sufficient for the effect we see. It is good you don't want to tease yourself into some false idea for some reason or other.
Do you believe in good and evil? Out of curiosity? To clarify that, I mean believe that some things are in their nature, "wrong" and "right", morally? That might be one way to ask part of what I am wondering about.
I believe nearly any "GOOD" person can do "EVIL" things given the right sociological circumstance and situation. Look up "STANFORD PRISON EXPERIMENT." And a book called "Lucifer Effect" explains how good people have potential to do evil.
Of course, I do believe some people can be born inherently evil due to biological reasons. For example, some people are born with a psychological mental illness that causes them to be very irrational & emotionless that may lead them to do immoral acts such as stealing, murder, rape etc. Of course, their social interactions will still be important, but their biological imprint is still a factor (their mental illness).
And I believe there are laws in the universe that affects our psyche that we do not yet fathom. Some of these concepts are esoteric, but I still think they are important even though they make not be 100% right (the devil is in the details). This is why I study Numerology & other more esoteric concepts as well as the psychology of evil & origin of universe like the big bang etc.
Some believe in destiny; others believe in free will.
Well, I think they can co-exist. It's a paradox.
Ok, and thank you for that. I bring good and evil, and could call it a sense of morality, that is there, even if we choose to acknowledge it or not. I think that we deeply sense right and wrong, and with that comes a sense of "oughtness", so to speak, for which naturalism or materialism doesn't accurately account for. It is one of the things that I think causes those of us that wonder about these topics, to ask "what would explain this?" In this case, what explains morality, the fact we know some things are wrong, and others are very right, or good.
So, not trying to throw more things than others that have been mentioned, into the mix, but its a good thing that seems to be in all of us, that needs explanation, if we want to be a little bit closer to our origin, I believe. You sound like such a person.
Labels. Seems we make too much of them. Maybe your just a reasonable person looking for reasonable answers to reasonable questions. That's where I started. And, though "reasonable" is not what many call me now, I am content and confident in my faith which was established in part by reason.
I too, like to study Numerology & many other groups concepts.
Also studying cultures, history, psychology, traveled, worldwide openness, then go out to gather the experiences. It's been a great way to explore the world. Way beyond that is Outside theories like the Big bang, making the best sense for a universe connection in my opinion..
Do not understand evil other than the absolute absence of reason, The origin of our species make great sense too.
Why must we be over obsess over one group, why can we be free like a universal child where everything goes through you or me.
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