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Author Topic:   Can You define God?
jar
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From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 267 of 318 (676014)
10-18-2012 11:31 AM
Reply to: Message 266 by Straggler
10-18-2012 11:29 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
Sorry you are still having problems with comprehension.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 266 by Straggler, posted 10-18-2012 11:29 AM Straggler has responded

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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 274 of 318 (676024)
10-18-2012 11:59 AM
Reply to: Message 268 by Straggler
10-18-2012 11:41 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
Not exactly.

If you can present some evidence of anything that really is supernatural then we can test your assertion to see if it holds up to examination.

What I have said is "GOD, if GOD exists, will be supernatural."


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 268 by Straggler, posted 10-18-2012 11:41 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 278 of 318 (676030)
10-18-2012 12:32 PM
Reply to: Message 275 by Straggler
10-18-2012 12:19 PM


Re: What Is GOD?
I have not tested GOD.

I see no way to test the supernatural.

Yes people can define most anything as supernatural and as I continue to point out, they have.

The fact that people call Voldemort supernatural has nothing to do with whether Voldemort is supernatural.

I do not assert my irrational beliefs as fact.

I will continue though to post about my beliefs.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 281 of 318 (676048)
10-18-2012 3:48 PM
Reply to: Message 280 by Straggler
10-18-2012 3:34 PM


Re: What Is GOD?
Your entire argument is founded on the object of your belief (and nothing else) being classed as supernatural.

Utter bullshit.

I have said I am open to learning about something that really is supernatural, all you need to do is present a way to test to determine something really is supernatural.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 283 of 318 (676051)
10-18-2012 3:58 PM
Reply to: Message 282 by Straggler
10-18-2012 3:52 PM


Re: What Is GOD?
And again, as I have said, I have not tested and see no way to test GOD as long as I am a human living in this natural world.

If you know a way to test something supernatural I am open to learning your method and examining it.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 282 by Straggler, posted 10-18-2012 3:52 PM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 285 of 318 (676181)
10-20-2012 10:00 AM
Reply to: Message 284 by Straggler
10-20-2012 9:36 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
You believe that GOD, and GOD alone, is genuinely supernatural.

No, once again that is not what I believe.

I will try once again to explain my position to you.

I agree that many people believe many things are supernatural, but I also see no way while I am simply a human living in this natural world to actually determine if something really is supernatural.

A GOD, if a GOD exists, would really be supernatural.

Other things might also really be supernatural.

We can test many asserted supernatural things and find out they are NOT supernatural.

Voldemort is a character in a fiction series, so we know that Voldemort is not really supernatural.

Many folk thought thunder and lightning supernatural but we now know they are not, they are just natural.

As a human though when I test things I either place them in a category of "I know they are natural" or "unknown".

I do not know of anything where I can say "That is really supernatural".

So far every God(s) or god(s) examined are creations of the human imagination.

The reason I have a high degree of confidence in that statement is that (as pointed out above) I see no way to even describe what true supernatural is. I can point out things it isn't (it is not natural), but I can't say what it really is.

All my experience, all the tools at my disposal, are natural. They are designed to detect natural. They follow natural rules and laws.

I do believe GOD exists.

But I cannot say anything about what GOD is. God, if GOD exists, really would be supernatural but since I have no idea what "supernatural" really is or any way to definitely test something that was supernatural or even define what supernatural really is, there is little I can say beyond stating my beliefs.

However, as a human, I also label things. As a theist, I worship a God, in my case the Christian God. I understand that is simply a label, not the object itself; it is a placeholder, a caricature, a map, a guide, a symbol.

The other God(s) or god(s) are also placeholders, symbols, caricatures, guides, maps, labels created to allow communication, discussion, guidance, direction, introspection, contemplation.

I also understand that I might be wrong and GOD might not exist, that there might really be nothing that is supernatural.

It really is that simple.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 284 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 9:36 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 286 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 10:13 AM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 287 of 318 (676185)
10-20-2012 10:23 AM
Reply to: Message 286 by Straggler
10-20-2012 10:13 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
I will try yet again.

Since I know of no way to test, describe, verify that something really is supernatural, I cannot state for a fact that anything is supernatural.

Demons, if demons existed, would be supernatural.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 286 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 10:13 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 288 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 10:26 AM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 289 of 318 (676187)
10-20-2012 10:36 AM
Reply to: Message 288 by Straggler
10-20-2012 10:26 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
You are probably wrong.

That is based on looking at the attributes, descriptions and characteristics asserted for Thor.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 288 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 10:26 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 291 of 318 (676191)
10-20-2012 11:09 AM
Reply to: Message 290 by Straggler
10-20-2012 10:53 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
Well, demons is a super vague term and so we really don't have a clue what it might be.

Thor though is pretty specific and we can look at those attributes and determine that they either are not supernatural or do not exist. Asgard and Midgard do not exist, thunder and lightning have real natural causes, the three worlds and nine nations of Norse mythology do not exist but can be seen to be related to actual areas of the world of the period when the mythos was developing.

We can also see the evolution of Norse mythology as Christianity was introduced into the folk lore and population.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 290 by Straggler, posted 10-20-2012 10:53 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 293 by Straggler, posted 10-22-2012 2:59 PM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 295 of 318 (676404)
10-22-2012 3:26 PM
Reply to: Message 293 by Straggler
10-22-2012 2:59 PM


Re: What Is GOD?
No, that is not the criteria I am applying.

Given additional details we can test something to determine that it is not supernatural.

When you mention Voldemort we do have additional details; for example we know Voldemort is just a fictional character and so is most definitely not supernatural.

Allah is far more ambiguous and so we have less details and can say almost nothing about Allah. There is the belief that Allah was the Creator and that Allah is the Yahweh character from the Hebrew Books and the final judge of all people. That's about it though.

I would place Allah as well as the various iterations of the Hebrew Yahweh as Gods, something almost certain not to exist. Again, we know the source for these characters and can watch the evolution of the descriptions over time. But both Allah and Yahweh are useful creations, attempts to describe what really cannot be described.

I have a very high degree of confidence that they are both simply human constructs just like the Christian God.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 293 by Straggler, posted 10-22-2012 2:59 PM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 296 by Straggler, posted 10-22-2012 3:46 PM jar has responded
 Message 298 by Thugpreacha, posted 10-23-2012 10:09 AM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 297 of 318 (676421)
10-22-2012 4:04 PM
Reply to: Message 296 by Straggler
10-22-2012 3:46 PM


Re: What Is GOD?
And I have answered.

We know Voldemort does not exist.

If I encountered someone in real life that had the attributes of the character I would NOT say it was supernatural.

I can't say anything about Allah since you provide no information about the entity you call Allah, and so can only repeat what I have said.

We know the origin of the stories about Allah and so I can say with a very high degree of confidence that Allah is simply a human construct.

And on Demons, as I have said, the term is so vague I can not have any real position. Because the term is so vague it has no real meaning. I have a very high confidence level though that demons do not exist.

I cannot say that ANYTHING that I can describe, test, discuss in any detail, point to or experience is really supernatural.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

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 Message 296 by Straggler, posted 10-22-2012 3:46 PM Straggler has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 300 of 318 (676490)
10-23-2012 10:19 AM
Reply to: Message 298 by Thugpreacha
10-23-2012 10:09 AM


Re: What Is GOD?
Not really. We have absolutely no way that I can see to know about anything that is supernatural and no reason to expect that anything that really is supernatural would correspond to anything natural or that we can imagine.

If we try to assign gender or entity or plural or abilities or shape or name or any other characteristic I can think of all we are doing is creating a caricature and anthropomorphism.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 298 by Thugpreacha, posted 10-23-2012 10:09 AM Thugpreacha has not yet responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 302 of 318 (676561)
10-23-2012 6:06 PM


Summary
Let me quote the opening post to refresh the topic and to place my summary within context.

2ndReign writes:

I don't believe in God personally but for the sake of discussion, I will concede that he does exist for the simple fact how can there be any kind of in-depth discussion on God if we are still arguing weather God exists or not.

Poe said...

quote:
If we cannot comprehend God in his visible works, how then in his inconceivable thoughts, that call the works into being? If we cannot understand him in his objective creatures, how then in his substantive moods and phases of creation?

As humans,we like to understand things. We feel the need to put them into some type of category, to name them. This has been a good thing for our species in many circumstances but in the case of God the ability to define or even name him is an impossibility. Yet that does not mean that it is not worth the attempt to gain some understanding of what God is, only that we must understand before we begin that defining something limits that something, and describing something often gets confused with defining something. You try to define your love of someone by describing why you love them. You attempt to define the sky by describing its properties,etc. So based on this,can you define God? Some if most would say that God is good, merciful, just, loving, and all powerful. All of these are words to describe him. It doesn't make them untrue, it simply avoided the bigger challenge, and that is defining him.

As pointed out in the OP, humans are the labeling species. We seem to need to place a label on everything, create definitions even when the definitions really tell us absolutely nothing about the object being defined.

Consider the oft quoted definition in this thread of "supernatural".

quote:
1.of, pertaining to, or being above or beyond what is natural; unexplainable by natural law or phenomena

Does that really tell us anything about the object being described as supernatural? I don't think so. What does "of, pertaining to, or being above or beyond what is natural" even mean beyond being a handy label we can stick on something to make us satisfied.

We also know as a fact that when we actually look at things claimed to be supernatural, they turn out to be just plain natural and not supernatural (whatever that really is) at all. The list is long, thunder, lightning, wind, sun, moon, earthquakes, floods, fire, famine, disease, seizures, dreams, hallucinations, eclipses, witches, hurricanes, tornadoes and yes, Gods and gods.

Look again at the oft quoted definition of a God:

quote:
1. (Christianity / Ecclesiastical Terms) a supernatural being, who is worshipped as the controller of some part of the universe or some aspect of life in the world or is the personification of some force Related adj divine

Again, what we see here is that word supernatural; an assertion that some people or group asserted that a supernatural being exists and is worshiped and that controls something.

That tells us about the people, that the group specified worships and assigns attributes, but tells us nothing about the object itself other than (as we see in the definition of supernatural above) that it is "unexplainable by natural law or phenomena"; an unknown.

It appears we are still no closer to being able to say what "supernatural" is, but we can perhaps say that some things are NOT supernatural.

We know for a fact that people have labeled things as supernatural that we have later found were totally natural.

Let's take a look at some Gods and gods. First let's look at the Hebrew god found in Genesis 2&3. Here we get some pretty specific information, it is a male, it walks, talks and looks like a human. It is unsure at times, seems to be learning on the job, proceeds by trial and error, creates by hand and magic but is a powerful ruler that commands a powerful army, interacts directly with its creation and is intimately involved.

So let's examine that concept. Is there any reason other than the fact that humans are writing the stories to think that a real GOD, if it existed, would be human like, would be unsure, would create by hand and magic, would be male, would walk and talk like a human ...?

We see they same characteristics in the Greek and Roman and Norse gods, a human that is powerful and can do magic but that in essence is just a powerful human often with very human weaknesses and failings.

In the Greek sagas there were the Younger gods and then there were the Titans but we have very specific information in the stories about where each lived and what each was like. The tales are filled with very human characteristics, fear, infidelity, jealousy, patricide, matricide, tricks, wars, incest, and all the characters even when symbolizing things like heavens (Uranus) or earth (Gaia) are human in form. Uranus is a male and gets his balls cut off and Gaia is a woman who has children.

Eventually though we have fully explored the places where these two groups lived and there are simply no traces of there ever being any habitation in those locations.

It seem clear that like the god character found in Genesis 2&3, The Olympians and Titans were simply characters in a story.

We can identify it seems with a fairly high degree of confidence things that are not supernatural.

But if there really was a supernatural critter, what can we label it?

I chose the term GOD since that is a term many people are already familiar with but in all caps to differentiate between that which really is supernatural and those things we just label as supernatural. But since I can't even describe or define or show or test or verify anything that really is supernatural, I cannot define, describe, show, test or verify such a critter.

If there really is anything that is supernatural I can say some things about what it is not but nothing about what it is.

I have a very high degree of confidence that it would be unlike anything I can experience in this natural world as a human; it would not be just another human, even a really powerful human, it would not be male or female or any gender we could assign. It would not be material, not live on Mount Olympus, not be human centric, not simply reflect human emotions, morality, customs, behaviors ...

I believe such a GOD exists, but it is simply a personal belief.

But I worship something I can wrap my mind around, not GOD but rather a God, a path, a map, a caricature, a human creation that is translated, labeled and defined in terms I can relate to. I also understand though that what I am worshiping is NOT the reality but just a placeholder.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

Replies to this message:
 Message 305 by Thugpreacha, posted 09-15-2017 12:04 PM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 306 of 318 (819962)
09-15-2017 12:24 PM
Reply to: Message 305 by Thugpreacha
09-15-2017 12:04 PM


Re: Summary
Phat writes:

So when you say that I create the God that I want, would you argue that it is impossible for me to describe the GOD Who may or may not exist, even if I claim that Jesus is GOD?

I would be more likely to point out that your claim has no real meaning in anyway related to the question of defining God.


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

This message is a reply to:
 Message 305 by Thugpreacha, posted 09-15-2017 12:04 PM Thugpreacha has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 307 by Thugpreacha, posted 09-15-2017 12:34 PM jar has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31518
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 308 of 318 (819979)
09-15-2017 1:09 PM
Reply to: Message 307 by Thugpreacha
09-15-2017 12:34 PM


Re: Summary
Phat writes:

I say that Jesus is alive. You reply with "what does that even mean?"

What would you expect me to say...except that it is a belief that I have?

No one doubts you have the belifs you claim to have.

The question is "What does Jesus is alive even mean?"


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

This message is a reply to:
 Message 307 by Thugpreacha, posted 09-15-2017 12:34 PM Thugpreacha has responded

Replies to this message:
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