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Thread: In Your Own Words: Why would your god want you to believe without seeing?

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    Veteran Member James Brown's Avatar
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    If believing without seeing is the preferred state (according to John 20:29) then why were there any post-resurrection appearances at all?

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    From what I have seen it is a simple way to alleviate worry and anxiety, and to develop a way of dealing with what can be a chaotic world.

    No complex philosophy or science. Simple repetition over and over of the Holy Babble. It works. It gets rid of worry and people are happy, albert at times at the expense of others.

    There are people here who I live with who constantly affirm a belief in god and Jesus. They think of little else. Escapism.

    A mantra if you prefer.

    Also a sense of the mysterious and supernatural. In the 60s-70s people left Christianity for Eastern traditions believing there was something to it beyond the western traditions. There are those who believe in alternative traditions as the Abrahamic followers do.

    It is not just Christianity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarpedon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Learner
    I think we are at a stage surely, where their are some expertise to scrutinize the texts as they do with forensic / psycological criminology. A biblical profiling if you will, on the main characters or writers, exposing who and how they are nothing but "liars" in the bible. Funny enough, I recall there was some detective (in the UK IIRC) who thought there was merit of authenticity in the biblical texts, from his years of experience,although a personal opinion nevertheless.
    In order to do that, we'd first have to assume what you've been unable to prove: That the characters were real people, and the texts are authentic documents with real authors. Even assuming "someONE wrote them," is giving them more credit than they deserve.
    It has sort of been done with lesser documented texts than Jesus - acceptable as "historic", built on findings such as ... and similar to... the Sumerian (Gilgamesh for example),the various texts as the Egyptian texts, the Mayan, the Chinese and the Aztecs and so on and so on. History on these groups have been accepted as ancient history .

    What IS so different with the Hebrew texts as compared with other ancient texts ?

    There are some people who make weak arguments (imo ), who make the mistake that Hebrew texts is of a lesser, non-credible text ( for some reason unclear) regardless of the amount of texts available (exceeding in comparison to: other non-biblical ancient texts). Looks like faulty logic imo.... a questionable viewpoint regarding all the available texts, like when the Israelites are: widely accepted to be wandering nomads of the times, as its written, which opposes the notion of error [/I](as I see it) the texts of ancient Hebrews IS not written on stone tablets or other ancient solid structures as those civilizations who stay put, in their locations that we .. today, choose to be man's history!
    Last edited by Learner; 09-11-2019 at 01:01 AM. Reason: Clarity

  4. Top | #44
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    Compared to Hindu texts the Holy Babble is crude and disjointed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by T.G.G. Moogly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ronburgundy View Post
    You're right that it makes a lot of sense for any theology to view God as finding human reason and our use of empirical evidence to understand the Universe as "ridiculous". In fact, all theism at least implicitly must reject human reason as invalid, b/c human reason inherently leads to the conclusion that God does not exist. Which is why the notion of "faith is virtue" was invented.
    This theological notion that God finds human reason and use of empirical evidence "ridiculous" puts theism at fundamental direct odds with all of science and rational philosophy, making religion an enemy of intellectual growth and thus all the human benefits that have come from rational inquiry.
    Religious corniness always gets a pass until it crosses some secular threshold.

    Most if not all religious persons consider themselves reasonable and rational. They likely consider themselves scientific as well.
    Which just means they lie to themselves about what those words actually mean. They also consider themselves "faithful", which is the very definitional opposite of reasonable, rational, and scientific. It is not possible to be these things and be faithful, and it not possible to be a theist without abandoning reason and science in deference to their opposite, faith.

    They are, at best, selectively rational and scientific when it suits them. But that inherently means they devalue rationality and science as epistemic principles, since principles are only principles when they are consistently applied. And since the conceptual content of theism and religion has many overlaps with the domains where reason and science are the best guides to knowledge, that means that how rational and scientific a person is has direct negative correlation with how sincerely religious they are. The actual magnitude of this inherent negative relation is masked by dishonesty, either by sincere religious believers lying about how much science and reason they actually accept or by those who accept science and reason lying about how much religion they sincerely believe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by James Brown View Post
    If believing without seeing is the preferred state (according to John 20:29) then why were there any post-resurrection appearances at all?
    There must have been a lot of paperwork to clear up.

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    Some texts are accepted provisionally because they are the only text available. For example, the Mayan texts. Unlike the Bible, where there is a wealth of other information, which often contradicts it.

    Why is that so hard?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronburgundy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by T.G.G. Moogly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ronburgundy View Post
    You're right that it makes a lot of sense for any theology to view God as finding human reason and our use of empirical evidence to understand the Universe as "ridiculous". In fact, all theism at least implicitly must reject human reason as invalid, b/c human reason inherently leads to the conclusion that God does not exist. Which is why the notion of "faith is virtue" was invented.
    This theological notion that God finds human reason and use of empirical evidence "ridiculous" puts theism at fundamental direct odds with all of science and rational philosophy, making religion an enemy of intellectual growth and thus all the human benefits that have come from rational inquiry.
    Religious corniness always gets a pass until it crosses some secular threshold.

    Most if not all religious persons consider themselves reasonable and rational. They likely consider themselves scientific as well.
    Which just means they lie to themselves about what those words actually mean. They also consider themselves "faithful", which is the very definitional opposite of reasonable, rational, and scientific. It is not possible to be these things and be faithful, and it not possible to be a theist without abandoning reason and science in deference to their opposite, faith.

    They are, at best, selectively rational and scientific when it suits them. But that inherently means they devalue rationality and science as epistemic principles, since principles are only principles when they are consistently applied. And since the conceptual content of theism and religion has many overlaps with the domains where reason and science are the best guides to knowledge, that means that how rational and scientific a person is has direct negative correlation with how sincerely religious they are. The actual magnitude of this inherent negative relation is masked by dishonesty, either by sincere religious believers lying about how much science and reason they actually accept or by those who accept science and reason lying about how much religion they sincerely believe.
    Some lie, but not all, and they lie to different degrees based on their level of knowledge. A kid telling about Santa isn't telling a fib because it's all the kid knows, unless he invents a whopper about having a ride on a reindeer.

    It's that inverse correlation between religiosity and scientific curiosity, and it's not binary, not all one or all the other. Then toss in emotional differences (aka instinct) between people and it isn't difficult to understand the behavior.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarpedon View Post
    Some texts are accepted provisionally because they are the only text available. For example, the Mayan texts. Unlike the Bible, where there is a wealth of other information, which often contradicts it.

    Why is that so hard?
    Because Lumpy cannot parse qualifiers like "accepted provisionally."
    To him, if historians accept it at all, then it's accepted. No gradations of credibility or usefulness. It's either historical or it's discounted as myth.

  10. Top | #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by T.G.G. Moogly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ronburgundy View Post

    Which just means they lie to themselves about what those words actually mean. They also consider themselves "faithful", which is the very definitional opposite of reasonable, rational, and scientific. It is not possible to be these things and be faithful, and it not possible to be a theist without abandoning reason and science in deference to their opposite, faith.

    They are, at best, selectively rational and scientific when it suits them. But that inherently means they devalue rationality and science as epistemic principles, since principles are only principles when they are consistently applied. And since the conceptual content of theism and religion has many overlaps with the domains where reason and science are the best guides to knowledge, that means that how rational and scientific a person is has direct negative correlation with how sincerely religious they are. The actual magnitude of this inherent negative relation is masked by dishonesty, either by sincere religious believers lying about how much science and reason they actually accept or by those who accept science and reason lying about how much religion they sincerely believe.
    Some lie, but not all, and they lie to different degrees based on their level of knowledge. A kid telling about Santa isn't telling a fib because it's all the kid knows, unless he invents a whopper about having a ride on a reindeer.

    It's that inverse correlation between religiosity and scientific curiosity, and it's not binary, not all one or all the other. Then toss in emotional differences (aka instinct) between people and it isn't difficult to understand the behavior.
    I agree that the more one knows about the real world, the more one must lie to maintain belief in religious concepts like God or and afterlife. However, I would argue that every adult that is not severely mentally stunted but who believes in God or anything close to an afterlife where their mind survives is inherently lying to themselves. They must lie in at least one of two ways, depending on how they rationalize their belief. If they rational their belief by relying upon pseudo-intellectual arguments that pretend their is evidence for these, then they are lying to themselves about the very obvious information known to all that makes shows these arguments are invalid. If they rationalize their belief by telling themselves that although their beliefs have no rational support, faith (the opposite of reason) is a valid path to accurate knowledge, then they are lying to themselves that faith is anything other than wishful thinking, which in ever other aspect of their daily life they reject as invalid and instead rely upon evidence. Basically, every person capable of surviving into adulthood without constant oversight has the reasoning capacity and knowledge that makes the invalidity of faith and beliefs like God and the afterlife obvious. Thus, they must lie to themselves either about this knowledge or about the validity of using faith and ignoring that knowledge.

    Sure, people can "compartmentalize" to some degree and this allows a believer to be science minded outside of things that are relevant to their faith, but such compartmentalization is just a form of self deceit, lying about the notion that there is some magical boundary where science and reason don't apply, when that boundary is nothing but "I want to believe these things that contradict reason."

    James Brown's question highlights this intellectual dishonesty inherent to claiming faith can be valid.
    Quote Originally Posted by James Brown View Post
    If believing without seeing is the preferred state (according to John 20:29) then why were there any post-resurrection appearances at all?
    Because at it's core, faith is just a form of intellectual dishonesty that even the faithful don't sincerely think is valid, as evidenced by the fact that they actually rely upon empirical evidence and human reason in most circumstances when being objectively correct has near certain consequences for their well being. Almost every moment of their day, the most "faithful" people contradict themselves by relying upon empirical evidence and human reason navigate the way through the world and thereby reveal that they ultimately know that those are the methods to reliable knowledge. When real knowledge doesn't support their preferred conclusion and there aren't clear certain harms to being wrong, then they believe want they want to be true and call that "faith" and claim faith is a path to truth to cover up the fact that it's just wishful thinking. So, even within their relgious beliefs where they claim faith is a virtue, then repeatedly try to claim empirical evidence to support the claims, and when that evidence is exposed as invalid or unreliable that retreat to "Well, I don't need any evidence anyway, because faith is a virtue."

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