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Author Topic:   What Benefits Are Only Available Through God?
Phat
Member
Posts: 9314
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 151 of 166 (803319)
03-28-2017 5:26 PM
Reply to: Message 137 by Stile
03-01-2017 2:39 PM


Re: Why I try to Help Others
even then, science can make progress, it just may require a paradigm shift and some more time.
So how come science gets to have a paradigm shift while faith never gets that option? Quite simply, what's so wrong with believing in miracles? magic, even? Everyone is so bent on proving what we know and so reluctant to validate what we believe...

So for a moment let's run with the belief in a magical God. Is this belief harmful? Has it been ruled impossible? If so, who made the rules?

I would argue that believing in a healing does not absolve one of a responsibility to see a doctor. I would argue, however, that blatant dismissal of magic as a potential and viable option---even if demonstrated no further than as a placebo effect---is unnecessary.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
"as long as chance rules, God is an anachronism."~Arthur Koestler

This message is a reply to:
 Message 137 by Stile, posted 03-01-2017 2:39 PM Stile has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 155 by Stile, posted 03-29-2017 9:19 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 9314
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 152 of 166 (803320)
03-28-2017 5:29 PM
Reply to: Message 150 by jar
03-28-2017 5:17 PM


Re: What's the difference?
only if you believe that humans are responsible for their own progress---even to the point of correcting the Gods they invent. I'm talking about the Creator of all seen and unseen...the One whom you have no ability to correct or improve upon.

You have asked the question a few times of "why should GOD favor you"?

My answer? He has no obligation to do so. It is a blessing when it happens, however.

Why should humans get all the credit for their own progress?


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
"as long as chance rules, God is an anachronism."~Arthur Koestler

This message is a reply to:
 Message 150 by jar, posted 03-28-2017 5:17 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 153 by jar, posted 03-28-2017 6:48 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply
 Message 157 by ringo, posted 03-29-2017 3:34 PM Phat has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 28841
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 153 of 166 (803330)
03-28-2017 6:48 PM
Reply to: Message 152 by Phat
03-28-2017 5:29 PM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

Why should humans get all the credit for their own progress?

Maybe because all the evidence shows it really is their progress and no evidence of any other source for progress has been presented?


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
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Stile
Member
Posts: 2870
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 154 of 166 (803348)
03-29-2017 9:06 AM
Reply to: Message 149 by Phat
03-28-2017 5:16 PM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

That's why this is a Faith&Belief Forum...scientific proof is not needed.

Just because something isn't needed doesn't mean it can't add value.

My argument is that Jesus had many ways of healing depicted in the stories that men of that generation or this generation we now live in would simply be unable to duplicate.

Without something to back this up, it's not so much an "argument" as it is a "claim."

The question is "what benefits are only available through God?"
Your answer is "miraculous healing from Jesus as depicted in the Bible."

A quick look around reality clearly shows that such miraculous healing is not currently available to anyone.

Therefore, it seems that this answer is incorrect.
Not only is this miraculous healing unavailable to current followers... it's seemingly not available to anyone at all.

If you're fine with that, and relying on your Faith & Belief to carry your argument...
...that is perfectly valid for you to do. In the sense that no one is going to send the police after you.

But it seems terribly unconvincing to anyone looking for an honest answer to "what benefits are only available through God?"
Might as well answer the question with "Instant superman-like powers!!"
Both claims seem to offer the same result.


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 Message 149 by Phat, posted 03-28-2017 5:16 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

    
Stile
Member
Posts: 2870
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 155 of 166 (803350)
03-29-2017 9:19 AM
Reply to: Message 151 by Phat
03-28-2017 5:26 PM


Re: Why I try to Help Others
Phat writes:

So how come science gets to have a paradigm shift while faith never gets that option?

I don't understand your question.
Why doesn't Faith have this option?
What's stopping Faith from having a paradigm shift?

Quite simply, what's so wrong with believing in miracles? magic, even?

That depends on what your doing with those beliefs.

If you're using those beliefs to comfort yourself, but still rely on science to actually help you... nothing's wrong at all.

If you're using those beliefs to actually help you, then you're putting your own safety at an unnecessary risk. And we end up with children dying because their parents believe modern medicine is evil.

Everyone is so bent on proving what we know and so reluctant to validate what we believe...

I don't think anyone has an issue with validating what we believe.
I think the problem is that no one is capable of validating certain beliefs. Such as "God exists."
But if there was a way to validate it... I would think that even the stoutest of scientists would jump at the chance.

So for a moment let's run with the belief in a magical God. Is this belief harmful?

Again, that depends on what those beliefs are and what you do with those beliefs.

If your belief is that God help you when you're sad, and you think of God when you're sad... and this help you be happy... then I don't see any harm at all. In fact, I see a lot of benefit to such a belief.

If your belief is that God will protect your family, and you do nothing except pray when your family is in trouble... then such a belief can be extremely harmful as your family is likely to be hurt by un-mitigated "trouble."

Has it been ruled impossible?

Again, that depends on the nature of the beliefs.

A "magical God" has not been ruled impossible. In fact, it may be impossible to make such a ruling.
However, an "all-powerful, all-beneficial God" has been ruled impossible by the existence of evil.

If so, who made the rules?

Logic and reality.

I would argue that believing in a healing does not absolve one of a responsibility to see a doctor.

Sounds like a beneficial belief that won't cause much (or possibly even "any") harm.
Also sounds like a belief that's not much different (practically speaking) from not having the belief at all.

I would argue, however, that blatant dismissal of magic as a potential and viable option---even if demonstrated no further than as a placebo effect---is unnecessary.

I would agree with this only in the specific-sense of applying it to the particularly harmless belief you provided as an example.
If you plan on expanding such a statement to a more general sense of "any/all beliefs" then I would have much to say that would show it to be a very harmful statement when applied to certain other specific beliefs.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 151 by Phat, posted 03-28-2017 5:26 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 28841
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.9


(3)
Message 156 of 166 (803354)
03-29-2017 10:36 AM
Reply to: Message 155 by Stile
03-29-2017 9:19 AM


On religious paradigm shifts
Stile writes:

Phat writes:

So how come science gets to have a paradigm shift while faith never gets that option?

I don't understand your question.
Why doesn't Faith have this option?
What's stopping Faith from having a paradigm shift?

Actually the whole history of faiths and religion are simply a series of paradigm shift.

Likely first were the animist religions, where nature and events were deities. There was the Sun and the Moon and Thunder and Lightning and Storms and the Trees and the Beasts.

The next paradigm shift was likely the Middle Eastern creation of the God of a given locale, one that was tied to a particular city or state. That paradigm even shows up in some of the Old Testament tales where the Hebrew God is shown as limited to the land the Hebrews occupied.

Next was likely the creation of the regional gods, ones that had limited power but over a whole area, not just some tiny area like a city or even a state like Judah or Israel (those last two often had an entirely different god than the other). That paradigm may have first been seen in the Vedic period in what is now India and later in Hinduism.

The next major paradigm, likely about 600 to 800 years before Jesus was created, was probably the Buddhist tradition where God becomes unknowable and all the earlier and later paradigms and gods that get created are subsumed.

About the same time another paradigm shift was happening to the north in China which the creation of religions based on the philosophy of one individual; Taoism and Confucianism. The sole purpose was changed from what the God wanted to what makes societies successful. They were likely the earliest attempts at a secular society based on a religion or philosophy.

When we look at any specific religion waswe also see paradigm shift after paradigm shift. The early Hebrew god is very humanist, personable, tied to one particular area or people, very limited yet powerful but only one god among many. Gradually that evolved to being the "One True God™" with all the others considered as false gods.

With the creation of Jesus there was yet another paradigm shift although it was still Judaism. The god created was boundless and not confined to one area or people. The later Islamic paradigm shift is almost identical except for its attribution of source.

But wait, there's more because almost all of the earlier paradigm shifts have also splintered creating additional paradigms; Sunni or Shia; Protestant, Roman Catholic, Orthodox; Christian or "True Christian™".

Edited by jar, : appalin spallin


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 155 by Stile, posted 03-29-2017 9:19 AM Stile has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13031
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 157 of 166 (803388)
03-29-2017 3:34 PM
Reply to: Message 152 by Phat
03-28-2017 5:29 PM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

I'm talking about the Creator of all seen and unseen...the One whom you have no ability to correct or improve upon.


Why does the Creator of all seen and unseen have to be perfect? When Henry created the first Ford it was the only Ford seen and unseen but was it perfect?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 152 by Phat, posted 03-28-2017 5:29 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 158 by Phat, posted 03-30-2017 3:15 AM ringo has responded

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 9314
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 158 of 166 (803415)
03-30-2017 3:15 AM
Reply to: Message 157 by ringo
03-29-2017 3:34 PM


Re: What's the difference?
well I suppose you could argue that the Creator does not *have* to be perfect, but the concept then becomes a creative imagination of your own mind....

We like our deities to be larger than life. Perfection is, after all, a worthy goal and calling.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
"as long as chance rules, God is an anachronism."~Arthur Koestler

This message is a reply to:
 Message 157 by ringo, posted 03-29-2017 3:34 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 159 by jar, posted 03-30-2017 7:01 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply
 Message 160 by ringo, posted 03-30-2017 11:43 AM Phat has responded
 Message 161 by Diomedes, posted 03-30-2017 12:12 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
jar
Member
Posts: 28841
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 159 of 166 (803416)
03-30-2017 7:01 AM
Reply to: Message 158 by Phat
03-30-2017 3:15 AM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

well I suppose you could argue that the Creator does not *have* to be perfect, but the concept then becomes a creative imagination of your own mind....

But the Bible stories show an imperfect creator.

Phat writes:

We like our deities to be larger than life. Perfection is, after all, a worthy goal and calling.

That is a relatively modern concept and so Christianity created a perfect god. But it certainly was neither the concept of those who wrote the Bible stories or the other religions over time described gods that were far from perfect.


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 158 by Phat, posted 03-30-2017 3:15 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13031
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


Message 160 of 166 (803424)
03-30-2017 11:43 AM
Reply to: Message 158 by Phat
03-30-2017 3:15 AM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

well I suppose you could argue that the Creator does not *have* to be perfect, but the concept then becomes a creative imagination of your own mind....


Perfection itself is a product of the imagination. It doesn't exist in reality, does it?

Phat writes:

We like our deities to be larger than life. Perfection is, after all, a worthy goal and calling.


We also like our villains to be larger than life. What good is a hero without a villain to contrast him with? Which is why we have to make up a super-villain to match our super-hero. Which is how we get into the quagmire of who created what.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 158 by Phat, posted 03-30-2017 3:15 AM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
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Diomedes
Member
Posts: 608
From: Central Florida, USA
Joined: 09-13-2013
Member Rating: 5.9


Message 161 of 166 (803425)
03-30-2017 12:12 PM
Reply to: Message 158 by Phat
03-30-2017 3:15 AM


Re: What's the difference?
We like our deities to be larger than life. Perfection is, after all, a worthy goal and calling.

To me, perfection is unattainable. It is akin to statements like 'all powerful' or 'all knowing'. It may sound fancy, but it produces logical paradoxes that cannot be reconciled. i.e. the famous statement asking if god could create a boulder so heavy that he himself could not lift it. The creation of the boulder requires an 'all powerful' capability, but that same ability is now undermined by the inability to lift the newly created boulder.

Perfection, all knowing, all seeing, all powerful are just concepts that do not manifest in reality. Kind of like asymptotes in mathematics. You can get close, but you never reach the asymptotic value.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 158 by Phat, posted 03-30-2017 3:15 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 9314
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 162 of 166 (803504)
03-31-2017 3:51 PM
Reply to: Message 24 by Stile
10-20-2009 3:08 PM


Re: Facts vs. Possibilities
Stile writes:

I admit that there may be benefits that are only available through God for certain individual people who are geared towards such possibility-based methods of spirituality.
Possibility-based in the sense that God is possible. And it's possible that God is the most powerful being ever. And it's possible that God is the most benevolent being ever... all those kinds of things.

But there will always be others (perhaps myself, even) who are geared towards more factually-based methods of spirituality.

What specific facts are you looking for?
As an example, take pyramid power. If it could be documented that the atmosphere within the pyramid is in fact charged with more electrical stimulus than a control box, would that somehow make pyramid power more valid as a factually based spiritual path?

Stile writes:

The point of this thread is to:

1. Identify if there are any factually-based spiritual levels that I am unaware of that I can gain benefits from. If such things exist, obviously I would like to cure my ignorance

2. Identify that factually-based spiritual levels are just as valid or powerful as possibility-based spiritual levels. It doesn't matter what kind of spiritual feelings they are... what matters is the type of person gaining benefits from those feelings.

That last sentence bothers me. Are you claiming that the source of the spirituality is less important than the recipient of said spirituality? Sounds a bit like the i-god syndrome.

I will admit, however, that one reason that I communicate (or pray) daily is in hopes of personally benefitting from such a relationship. Perhaps, in the final analysis, we all are selfish to a degree.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
"as long as chance rules, God is an anachronism."~Arthur Koestler

This message is a reply to:
 Message 24 by Stile, posted 10-20-2009 3:08 PM Stile has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 166 by Stile, posted 04-02-2017 10:47 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 9314
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 163 of 166 (803505)
03-31-2017 4:01 PM
Reply to: Message 160 by ringo
03-30-2017 11:43 AM


Re: What's the difference?
ringo writes:

Perfection itself is a product of the imagination. It doesn't exist in reality, does it?

In the context of Faith & Belief, it does. Some say it doesn't, just as some say He isn't.

Perhaps the question is whether perfection is a valid goal and ideal for us to strive towards...without fully understanding what it is.

Trying to do your best every day is one method.

Trusting that the Creator understands our shortcomings is another.

Scripture says that the fear of the lord is the beginning of wisdom.

I feel that a healthy fear of how far I have to go to even approach perfection is a loving form of discipline. It's like realizing that one has to write a fifteen-page term paper over the weekend.

All you can do is try your best and hope that the teacher will overlook the fact that all you managed to produce is 12 pages double spaced.

Just as with the term paper, it is unwise to procrastinate. People should begin to think about whether they want to have a relationship with an unprovable invisible Deity long before they are on their deathbed.

For me, I try and be honest with myself in prayer and meditation.


Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue to advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all. –RC Sproul
"A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes." –Mark Twain "
~"If that's not sufficient for you go soak your head."~Faith
"as long as chance rules, God is an anachronism."~Arthur Koestler

This message is a reply to:
 Message 160 by ringo, posted 03-30-2017 11:43 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 164 by ringo, posted 04-01-2017 11:45 AM Phat has not yet responded
 Message 165 by New Cat's Eye, posted 04-01-2017 5:00 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13031
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.5


(1)
Message 164 of 166 (803521)
04-01-2017 11:45 AM
Reply to: Message 163 by Phat
03-31-2017 4:01 PM


Re: What's the difference?
Phat writes:

Perhaps the question is whether perfection is a valid goal and ideal for us to strive towards...without fully understanding what it is.


I think striving toward "perfection" definitely is a valid goal. The problem is in defining what "perfection" is. Striving to be a faster runner is easy enough - but how do you strive to make "better" use of your time and money, for example? How do you determine what is "better"?

Phat writes:

Trying to do your best every day is one method.

Trusting that the Creator understands our shortcomings is another.


How does trusting the Creator help YOU overcome your shortcomings? You'd have to trust that YOUR understanding of your shortcomings was reliable, whether that understanding came from the Creator or from your own head. What if failure to understand the Creator IS one of your shortcomings?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 163 by Phat, posted 03-31-2017 4:01 PM Phat has not yet responded

  
New Cat's Eye
Member
Posts: 11352
From: near St. Louis
Joined: 01-27-2005
Member Rating: 2.3


(1)
Message 165 of 166 (803531)
04-01-2017 5:00 PM
Reply to: Message 163 by Phat
03-31-2017 4:01 PM


Re: What's the difference?
Perhaps the question is whether perfection is a valid goal and ideal for us to strive towards...without fully understanding what it is.

No, perfection is the enemy of good.

Trying to do your best every day is one method.

Put in your best effort, but don't be dissatisfied with falling short of being the best. It happens. And failing that shouldn't prevent your efforts.

Trusting that the Creator understands our shortcomings is another.

Just don't let that be an excuse

Scripture says that the fear of the lord is the beginning of wisdom.

I feel that a healthy fear of how far I have to go to even approach perfection is a loving form of discipline. It's like realizing that one has to write a fifteen-page term paper over the weekend.

All you can do is try your best and hope that the teacher will overlook the fact that all you managed to produce is 12 pages double spaced.

I dunno, man, maybe you should be setting more attainable goals?

Finding God has made me rethink that whole fear of the lord thing. God isn't scary. But you do have to submit to Him. I think it may be more about how you're going to have to listen for God in order to find His message and you're not going to be able to take charge and go get it. So, if you approach Him with the same behaviors as you would if you were afraid, then you might get better results than thinking you're the boss. That seems more realistic than being afraid of what God'll do to you if you mess up. IMHO.

Just as with the term paper, it is unwise to procrastinate. People should begin to think about whether they want to have a relationship with an unprovable invisible Deity long before they are on their deathbed.

That deathbed will wake your ass up tho!

I'm not convinced it matters all that much, regardless, God will be there.

For me, I try and be honest with myself in prayer and meditation.

Finding God has allowed me to hear my self as well. Setting goals that I actually want and can really achieve has provided me with a lot of new good times to be had, and that's been helping keep my mind in the present.

To stick with the analogy, I guess I'm trying to say to forget the paper's deadline and go write about something that you want to write about. Then you won't have to worry about putting a lot of effort into coming up with content - just receive it.

And don't worry if it's perfect or not.

Cheers, Phat.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 163 by Phat, posted 03-31-2017 4:01 PM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
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