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Old 03-03-2006, 02:38 AM   #466
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hi amnesia,

you asked me a couple of questions - why do i believe that god exists, and why do i believe that jesus is god.

i thought i would wait until all the recent off-topic posts ran out of steam. that gave me some time to gather my thoughts.

why do i believe that god exists - as i have said before, certainly my christian upbringing plays a large role in that. also, i cant totally rule out the fact that i hope that god exists. in fact, when a non-believer will admit to me that he also would like god to exist, it helps me to believe he does not have god-issues. who wouldnt like the notion of a loving god, with all happiness in your existence ?

you asked me why i believe. i understand that some of my reasons for believing are not based on logic. but they exist, nevertheless.

so basically, up til now, i have given you a religious religion, and one based on a natural human desire.

but i have also analyzed it from a scientific vantage point. based on logic, and the physical reality of this universe, i have in my opinion laid out an unattackable reasoning why this universe must have had its creation due to something outside itself.

while this does not conclusively point to the existence of a god, the opposite (i.e. that the universe could have created itself) would at least place more doubt in me, everything else being the same.

so, going along with the theory that this universe had an outside event to create it, one asks what that event could have been, and could it have been god, as we have come to understand that concept.

if we assume that there is no commonality between this universe and the super-universe from which this universe was started, then we have absolutely no info with which to make any sort of probability - so from our vantage point, anything is a 50/50 chance. maybe it is, and maybe it isnt. maybe god exists, and maybe god doesnt.

however, if we assume that there is even the slightest bit of similarity or commonality between our universe and the super-universe, then the odds or probability of a god would seem to be greater than 50%.

there is too much organization in our universe, to think that it happened out of a perchance event. at least this is how i feel about the question, and why i lean on the side of the fence of god existing, as opposed to god not existing.

now whether jesus is god or not - that has a lot more to do with faith and a little bit of common sense. i dont have any scientific thought patterns about it.

but when i look at the teachings of jesus, it coincides with what i think a loving father would say to us, and want from of us, etc. so i at least would keep an open mind to it, because i see no definite reason to disbelieve it.

on the other hand, with islam - mohammed spread islam thru violence. in no way do his actions and that of early islam give me even an iota of a thought that mohammed had any real visions or talks with god, if he does exist. so i completely rule that religion out - just from its very actions and conception.

now i realize that this is in no way even close to being conclusive that jesus was god - but there is at least consistency between jesus and what i have come to believe about god.

so i guess my upbringing and then the consistence of jesus's teachings have a lot to do with why i tend to believe that jesus is god, or at least may be god. actually what i actually believe is a bit different than what the typical christian believes.

i do believe that jesus was an actual person here on earth. but i do not believe that jesus is an actual separate person or entity from god - in the sense of a father, son relationship that most christians have been taught. i think we have been taught that because it is easier for us to understand it that way. what i believe jesus to be was god's way of talking to us. now god could have chosen to talk to us in any way he wanted. but god chose to talk to us via a likeness of ourselves. while i cant say why god chose to do it that way, i can only guess that god wanted us to feel more comfortable by viewing something that had the image of a human being, as opposed to a lightning bolt or whatever.

anyways, i guess this is my reasoning as best as i can to your 2 questions.
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Old 03-03-2006, 08:05 AM   #467
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OK, so for the two questions 1: "why do you believe in a god" and 2: "why do you believe that jesus is that god", you basically answered:

1. Because the universe is too highly ordered to be the product of chance
2. Because the purported teachings of Jesus align with how you believe a benevolent god would act.

Fair summaries?

As I hope you can see, there's a fairly large gap here: What makes you believe that the source of order in the universe is benevolent?

For question 1, there's a huge, huge difference between saying even that there was an intelligence behind the structure of the universe and saying that this intelligence is still around and purposely planned for the human race...and that's not even mentioning the real issue: what makes you believe that said intelligence cares about humans one way or another?

This seems to be the keystone issue, because once you start believing that your universe-creator god cares, then you start looking for a religion whose god matches up with what you envision...
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Old 03-03-2006, 02:12 PM   #468
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I'll sum up the answer to this in a really simple way.

God must exist. Because the Earth is obviously only like 6000 years because smart people who study the Bible estimate it to be about that age. Ofcoarse he created billions of galaxies with billions of solar systems with billions of planets just for us to be able to look at. Because we are the only living beings in the universe. And it makes sense that we go through all the pains in life because a woman ate an apple in the garden.

If you don't believe all that then there is something wrong with you.
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Old 03-03-2006, 06:42 PM   #469
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Joice alot of Christians including the catholic Church have critical thought and believe the universe is NOT 6000 years old but much older.

As for the order of the Universe.... the Universe is not order it is chaos.
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Old 03-03-2006, 09:47 PM   #470
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hi amnesia,

good points. i am not sure i can answer your question as you have stated it, without using circular logic. because part of my definition of god is that of a loving father.

you are asking me why i believe in that particular aspect of god. that is a tough one. obviously, i have no scientific answer to that.

i would say there are 2 items that should be mentioned, in that regard. 1) we have life, as we speak. since few of us want to be terminated, it is fair to say that life itself is a positive, or caring thing that has been given to us.

2) just from my human wisdom, i can see that people would be much happier following the teachings of jesus. so while our lives here on earth may indeed be a test of sorts, following the teachings of jesus makes even our lives here on earth more pleasurable. so again, a positive or caring thing that has been given to us, if we care to follow.

but i do understand your point or what you are asking. for example, if i believed that god did not care about us, then there would be at least less of a reason for me to believe in jesus as god.

dont know if i was able to answer your question in a satisfactory way.
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Old 03-03-2006, 10:09 PM   #471
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prove it
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Old 03-03-2006, 11:51 PM   #472
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if you want to join in the conversation, please try to do so intelligbly.

prove what ?
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Old 03-04-2006, 12:54 AM   #473
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gymeejet
part of my definition of god is that of a loving father.
I thought your definition of a god was a supernatural entity that created our universe? "Loving father" has nothing to do with that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gymeejet
i can see that people would be much happier following the teachings of jesus.
I couldn't disagree more.

A) I think people would live much more meaningful and complete lives if they didn't spend so much time worrying about magic and some kind of fabled afterlife and trying to interpret the wishes of various deities. Do you know how much death, destruction, war and tyranny has been done in the name of various gods throughout the ages? All by followers who are convinced that their god is the only true god. Christianity is no better.

B) If people were forced to follow some religion, there are many that I believe would make people happier than Christianity. What about Buddhism?
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Old 03-04-2006, 02:23 AM   #474
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well that definition is true, but not complete, i guess. because i do see god also as a loving father figure.

while i agree about your remarks about religion and much of the damage it has caused - please dont tie that into negating what jesus taught us. remember that i have negative connotations regarding the word religion for those very reasons.

that is the main mistake that you non-believers make, or rationalize about, when you criticize christianity or other religions.

the fact that many people thru the ages have used religion for their own purpose, does not negate the teachings of jesus. it merely negates those who have done such terrible things.

in regards to buddhism, i dont know enough about it to have an informed decision. but from what little i do know, it is my impression that most of the eastern philosophies are of a peaceful nature. so i would suspect that such ideals would enhance an individual's spirituality.
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Old 03-04-2006, 02:28 AM   #475
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also, i hope you werent thinking that i wanted people to be forced to follow the teachings of jesus, or any other school of thought ?

i was merely stating that i think people would be happier if they did so - but certainly on a voluntary basis. it seldom helps to force someone to do something that they dont want to do.

more along the lines of a child being willing to follow his parent's advice (assuming we have a good parent). the parent is usually much wiser and knowledgeable and knows more about what is better for the kid than the kid does. that is why he is the parent, and is supposed to impart said knowledge to his child, so that the child can benefit from said knowledge.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:16 AM   #476
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gymeejet
also, i hope you werent thinking that i wanted people to be forced to follow the teachings of jesus, or any other school of thought ?

i was merely stating that i think people would be happier if they did so - but certainly on a voluntary basis.
No, my point was that there other religions that seem to have happier followers. It seemed to me that you just picked Jesus because that was what you were most familiar with, being raised to follow that particular god.

You shouldn't want people to follow your god just because it's yours---if people are going to subject themselves to mysticism and illogic, at least they should follow the religion that will make them happiest, right? Even if it's not yours?
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Old 03-04-2006, 12:12 PM   #477
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sure - no problem with that at all.
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Old 03-04-2006, 12:33 PM   #478
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Oh, and I have no issue with the philosophies that Jesus purportedly spoke about (though they are not necessarily for me).

It's only when he was said to have talked about magic and people turning their backs on logic that I think he was morally wrong.
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Old 03-04-2006, 05:34 PM   #479
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gymeejet
the fact that many people thru the ages have used religion for their own purpose, does not negate the teachings of jesus. it merely negates those who have done such terrible things.
I think you're missing the point.

The fact that people throughout history have done terrible things in the name of Christianity means that either:
  • Jesus supported terrible things, or
  • people misinterpret what their "god" intended
Right? Those are the only two options.

So if not the first, then it must be the second. But if stories of your god are so open to interpretation, what makes you think that you have interpreted your god's will correctly?
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Old 03-04-2006, 08:01 PM   #480
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hi amnesia,

perhaps we are using the word "interpret" differently. because those are not the only 2 options, from my point of view.

however, i use the word "interpret" to mean a real attempt to understand something. for example, we each read a difficult physics text. both of us may come up with different interpretations, but each of us are attempting to come up with a correct interpretation, or correct understanding.

most of the leaders in the past and even today who have used religious ideas to attempt to manipulate people were never attempting to interpret any sort of religious dogma. they simply wanted to get the masses doing something for them.

even today, people are easily swayed by the system - just look at the voting process. a 1000 years ago or more, and they were manipulated just that much more easily. maybe in 10,000 years mankind will have matured enough so that the masses can actually make wise decisions.
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