Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by wynn, May 30, 2012.
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wynn, you seem attached to the notion that we MUST have a purpose. Not just from a personal point of view, but a purpose beyond the needs of the individual.
Why is this?
If a large meteor were to hit the earth and wipe out a portion of earth's human population, certainly some people of faith would take it as a sign from "God".
If a large meteor hits some other planet, one without human life on it, and wipes out a percentage of its living species. No human on Earth would consider the event to have any significant spiritual meaning. Even if we were fully aware that it happened.
Why does it seem the idea of higher purpose can only apply to human lifeforms? And why MUST it be that we have a higher purpose. What makes us so much more spiritually significant than all the other lifeforms on our planet? Or any lifeforms that may exist on other planets?
Surely a large meteor that can wipe out a significant number of our species would at the same time wipe out many "lesser" lifeforms.Do they just not matter to "God"? If they don't matter, why bother creating them?
Why is it NECESSARY for humans to be superior to other life? And why is it NECESSARY to have a higher purpose?
the asteroid impact that hit Jupiter had many theist claiming it was a warning from God (which i am inclined to agree, but wont argue it..)
(Also i think it funny, when i searched to be sure of the name of the planet, one of the results returned was ; "Buy Meteor Impacts and save big "..LOL)
Do as I say...
Fair enough, but is it not reasonable to assume that meteors hit planets in parts of the universe we are not able to observe? are those signs from "God" too? Doesn't make much sense to send signs in a manner that we are unable to observe. There is plenty of evidence to support that collisions in space have been occurring since long before we had the technology to observe it. Has "God" been sending us signs in such a manner knowing full well we had no way of seeing them?
take this for what it is worth..
If you are truly seeking answers..
try attending different churches, look for the non-mainstream ones, the smaller churches, you do not have to commit to anything to check them out..
the bigger churches tend to have their focus on things other than God..(pass the plate,being more popular,being politically correct..etc..)
the smaller churches do not have those distractions as much,(they can have others)
but the smaller churches tend to me more focused on God..(still not saying they are perfect)
get a feel for if they are trying to teach "do as your told" or "think for yourself".
"think for your self" churches are few and far between, so don't be discouraged if you do not find one right away..
think for your self churches tend to focus on studying the bible with a historical context, the better ones will have done the research and have documentation to back up their claims about history..
Question the pastor on EVERYTHING, leave the ones that the pastor gets frustrated with your questioning..(this is THE best advice i can give as it quickly exposes the pastors motivations)
do this and you will get the answers you are looking for, and you can decide for yourself what you want to believe.
asking here is an effort in futility, as the theist here aren't able to fully answer your questions without the wrath of the anti-theist..
um this question seems a little silly to me..
but if you are asking what made the Jupiter meteor strike different/special..i would have to say it is because it was highly publicized AND was close to us..
So are you suggesting that events in space are only signs if we observe them? This sounds very much like the double slit experiment. And it holds no water.
It makes as much sense as the arguement,"its true because I say so"
Avoiding answering a question by calling it silly does not, in fact, make the question silly, and instead only shows you avoid answering a question. Think it silly if you must, but humor me and answer the questions I posted.
it's silly cause you are asking "if we don't see it, can it be a sign?"
in order for it to be a sign, we have to see it..otherwise it can't be..
(now don't go arguing a stop sign is still a stop sign ,whether we see it or not..)
and we ARE talking about spiritual signs..
not scientific ones..
Meteor strikes happen on every planet, including our own. Why would you construe the ones on Jupiter to be a sign from your skydaddy?
Maybe it's just born of autism:
You had to start a thread on this when we were already discussing it in another thread?
Atheism is born out of feeling happy and comfortable with the truth. It is born out of being content with one's life. Not the other way around. Atheists don't need a "in the Grand Scheme of Things". As I pointed out to you in the other thread. We matter and are relevant to our loved ones and those we are close to. No one else. When we die, life goes on for everyone else but us (the one's who die).
Why do you need us to matter "In the Grand Scheme of Things"? You still aren't able to answer that question. Why should we matter? Saying the universe is relevant and then saying that we are a part of the universe and thus we are relevant as part of the whole is not really an answer. Why does there have to be a "Grand Scheme of Things"? Karma as you pointed out in the other thread? If so, it would make humans even more selfish and egotistical, who only do good deeds to avoid bad karma and possibly to avoid hell and who only do good to benefit themselves in the afterlife.. after all, this is what "In the Grand Scheme of Things" tends to entail. Selfishness..
ok, but does the act of observation mean that it has to be a sign?
If a rock falls from a cliff, and a human sees it. Does that mean it is a sign? Does the act of seeing it, make it a sign? If not, then what evidence is there that any particular thing is a sign from God?
If all the stars realigned and undeniably spelled out the words, "I Am God, I Am Real" then proceeded to realign to spell out the 10 commandments and EVERYONE saw it. And a loud booming voice that Everyone in the world could hear and understand regardless of language also confirmed the writing in the sky. I could see saying these phenomenon are signs from God and I would likely fall on my face and eat a lot of crow begging for forgiveness for doubting. But these would be examples of events that never happen. Things that violate the laws of physics and cannot by any existing scientific principles be explained away.
But you are attributing the possibility of divine messages to things that are mundane and happen all the time in nature, both on earth and in space. Things that are understood through scientific study and show no evidence of purpose. Why is one random observed event in nature a sign but not another?
I have to wonder...
Does it scare theists to consider the possibility that the rock falling may just be a random occurrence directly related to gravity, erosion, wind currents, and tiny vibrations in the air and ground? Does it scare a theist to consider the possibility that there is no God and we are on our own to figure out what to do with ourselves? Could it not be that fear, is actually what cripples a theist's ability to seriously consider the universe from an atheist's point of view?
A rock falling off of a cliff is a sure sign you shouldn't stand too close to the bottom of that cliff.
Moderator note: 19 posts consisting of personal snipes, responses to the same etc. have been deleted.
Please try to stay on topic.
Great topic. This goes off in all directions. I started out thinking about genes, the way animals greet each other, create pecking orders or even mourn their dead.
Religion without a socializing element would be so completely different - it's hard to imagine. On the other hand, it's perfectly plausible that a person who simply finds no common ground with popular belief just happens to be a loner or even autistic.
I found this pretty amazing too:
There is no evidence. This whole "sign from God" business is a holdover from an age when superstition trumped reason, and people couldn't figure why such variances from the norm would randomly occur. Their best explanation was that they were signs...though signs of what was probably something rarely agreed upon.
Today, we know why meteors hit planets, and there's nothing supernatural about the phenomenon.
Or some verification of the miracles that supposedly happen all the time in the holy lands today. Can we get a real doctor to affirm a faith healing? I mean, anything would be better than the evidence we have now, which is none.
Excellent question, and one a believer can't answer.
I'm sure that's true for many, yes.
Sign and portents have long been known to be ultimately meaningless. Conside r the following from Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1. After Glendower boasts that an earthquake and yet another sensational lightning storm accompanied his birth, Hotspur counters with:
“So it would have done at the same season, if your mother’s cat had but kittened, though yourself had never been born.” Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!
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I like this idea. It reminds me of the way the Dalai Lama will cast questions of morality and ethics into the framework of an ordered mind.
I also think that projects that indoctrinate kids, like Sunday School, may be doing a lot of damage towards that child's future mental health. In particular, you will tend to see very kind and nurturing adults leading the program, but then there the kids are with coloring books, filling in holes in Jesus' hands with red crayon, while the leader reads or explains some adult-rated material either as direct passages from the Bible, or in terms of a sermon.
A more ideal setting for a youngster might be simply to encourage them to engage in a group setting those ideas which make them feel happy and comfortable, as you put it. Then when they get a little older maybe they won't have as many psychological issues that get in the way of ordered thinking.
But I would even go so far as to say that people heavily indoctrinated as children and who probably develop an aversion to indoctrination as they mature, can find a lot of solace in atheism and those pursuits, like science, that thrive on discovery of truth. For all we know, the cure for cancer may come from someone who found refuge in research for its ameliorative effects of ordered thinking upon the unsettled and slightly traumatic views on how and why to think a certain way that were developed in youth.
No doubt there are different personality types and different strengths and weaknesses that can evolve under all kinds of stimulation or hardship. But as a rule if more serious thought were given to your point I think it would be plausible to argue that indoctrination is tantamount to child abuse.
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