... where did the miracles, healing and deliverance come from?
Just to what miracles, healing and deliverance do you refer?
And just how would we ever find objective evidence of a spiritual event?
My strongest spiritual event was when I was poopin’ ‘n ‘snoopin’ through the woods (technical military term) in the wee hours on a moonless cold winter field away from all light. Then the eyes settled into night mode. To the south was the milky way in all her glory spreading out across the skyline lit up like a billion sparklers set in unison. All over the sky in every direction blazed bright with stars to a depth I had never seen. All those photons. How old were they? How far had they come? I reached out my arm and cast a shadow in star light.
I had an epiphany of enlightenment that moment. How insignificant and yet how significant this little speck of life-covered rock really is. It struck deep and it struck hard. We are precious because, apparently, we are rare. Yet in this galaxy of extreme violence we are just a fragile speck of flotsam open to destruction at any moment from anywhere.
From there springs a philosophy of life.
That is how a realist, an atheist, has a spiritual event. Just as powerful, just as meaningful, as any other you may have had or heard … and just as subjective and just as meaningless to the universe as any of them.
For this is no mere probability. It is infinite grace. God chose us.
Like I said in my last message, it's all in your head, Phat.
None of this is real
Something to consider.
As to this great cosmic lottery, keep in mind that our knowledge of physics is quite strong. We know in detail the operations of this universe and though we see what seems to be determinism we know that underneath there is the probabilistic nature of the universe.
We can see in the physics where, if we rewind the cosmic clock back 14 billions years ago what would result would not be the same as we see now. This sun and its planets most probably would not be formed all their materials having been randomly shuffled over cosmic time to other structures. No Earth, no humans. And with that, no talk of grace or gods.
The enormous complexity of the universe and the near infinite set of configurations available as probable outcomes for the matter/energy that is, preclude any repeat of the same exact outcome that we now see.
Run the project again and we would not be here. Run the project an million, a billion, a trillion times yet again and we would still not be here. But the one configuration that ultimately developed from all this jostling of matter/energy included a G-type main-sequence star and a small green-blue speck of dirt in orbit around it.
We get to live. We did win the Cosmic LottoSM.
There is nothing in quantum theory that builds any mathematical or philosophical cave in which to hide your god. There is nothing in quantum or classical theory that leaves any reason to propose the existence of some ultra-powerful physical-law-defying meddlesome entity loose to work its will on the universe.
No, Phat, your god had nothing to do with any of it. She was left out of this configuration.
Cultural brainwashing is not limited to neither right-wing nor religion, however.
That may be true but both the right and religion, which might as well be the same as far as intellectual ability is concerned, are where the phenomenon is most often in use. Understandably, each seems to also have a deep need for the practice within their official rituals.
Yeah, as a matter of fact it does work. You can condition a human to respond to specific stimuli with specific actions just like Pavlov's dog without any voluntary buy-in by the victim. Far beyond mere influence.
quote:External stimuli can influence the transformation but only the mind itself can "control" the transformation.
This is only part true for the most common forms of persuasion employed in polite society: advertising, education etc. This is not at all true for the kinds of intense dominating techniques used by jesus camp, cultists and reich-wing demagogues.
Do the search, Google Scholar. The human brain, its processes and results, are quite manipulable from concerted outside control. Not just influence but control of the thought processes themselves. The constant barrage of specific stimuli will cause new synaptic connections to form and strengthen to the exclusion of others that have already formed and will now atrophy from disuse.
That is how the brain functions. And in cases of intense brainwashing it is not voluntary and leaves the victim no control over its effects. In the jesus camp video the children are not being influenced. Their minds are being rewired for control of their religious thought.
But this is a side tangent I'm sorry I got you into. In the context of your conversation with Phat you are right.
quote:We are ALL "being transformed" - some for the better, some for the worse. The fact is that there is NO correlation between "transformation" and Christianity.
There is no hidden supernatural force that can be shown to be transforming human minds into good little Christian Soldiers. As usual with religionists seeking validation any supposed influence by some universal sky daddy to bring the beauty of Christianity to a deserving individual by screwing with the wiring in their brain is nothing more than another in a long line of mystical articles of faith denied by reality.