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Old 07-26-2009, 02:12 AM   #151 (permalink)
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Non because he/she/it doesn't exist.



Who's looking for God's signature? Certainly not me.
Is there any evidence of God's signature? Certainly not, unless you can provide me with hard evidence of course.
And don't quote Leibniz because "why is there something rather than nothing?" is a question and not an answer. What kind of evidence is that other than an opinion.
Most people start out in life not with what they are taught but what they are told as children. This isn't learning btw. And for the most part children believe what they are told.
I was told Santa Claus was real, until it became obvious that he didn't exist.

"everyone seems to start from what they don't know (ie, what they've been taught--science) rather from what they do know... emotions, interpersonal relationships, desire--for meaning, companionship, reward for overcoming urges that set us against others... why isn't all that evidence?"

Is it possible these things you speak of are able to exist without God?



1. I don't.
2. Why should I? Do they provide hard evidence of God's existence? If not, I won't waste my time.


My opinions on the non existence/existence of God are based on complete lack of evidence. This doesn't make me any less spiritual than a christian, or any other deluded religious individual.
I consider myself spiritual when I listen to music, read poetry, wonder at the beauty of the universe, but I don't put these things down to a divine influence. I have no reason to.
There are lots of things in this world we can't disprove. What matters in life is what is true. God nor the universe care what I think. If there was no God would I be bereft of my emotions, my love of music, my sense of compassion with all things sentient?
that question should have been "what kind of evidence would you expect God to leave behind?" if God did exist, what 'hard evidence' would convince you of it? what Kierkegaard and Pascal do is not provide hard evidence, they provide profound queries, they look at life in ways people generally do not, from multiple perspectives, with incredible depth.

when you distinguish between considering yourself spiritual and sensing divine influence you're to me just playing with words. i see them as the same thing. if something is 'spiritual,' that implies a spirit, and if that spirituality is common to all living things that implies a spirit that resides within all living things, and that's all I'm talking about when I say 'God' (although there are other conceptions, of course)

in that regard, yes, you would be bereft of your emotions, love of music and compassion if there were no God, because those very things are expressions of God, they are how we know God.

you say truth is important, but what is truth? if you think that's a stupid question, then you must not realize there are many different ways of thinking about truth, and that anyone truly concerned with finding out "the Truth" must be ready to attack the notion of Truth itself, to see what it is made of, to explore the different perspectives on it.

for this reason it really saddens me to put reading Kierkegaard or Pascal down to a "waste of time." at least then admit that looking for Truth is also a waste of time.

you ask, could subjective phenomena exist without God? I believe in God, though I do not know the nature of God. however, the two ways in which I usually think about God is either as the source of subjective phenomena (that is, we experience love because we are indirectly experiencing God) or the totality of subjective phenomena (that is, God is love and hate and beauty and revulsion etc.). so again, no i do not think subjective phenomena would be possible without God. I think subjective phenomena must have a source, and that this source cannot be material objects since the very idea of a 'material object' is simply 'that which we do not recognize as a subject.' for me, the very existence of emotions (the very existence of the universe) is a proof of God, which is nothing but the proof that the Universe wants to exist. another way of saying the same thing is "I have a will, I am part of the Universe, therefore the Universe has will(s), hence the Universe is personal, hence I can call it God, since God is the notion of a personal entity that transcends my boundaries"
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:15 AM   #152 (permalink)
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The problem with all of this is that too often we boil things down to a question of whether one believes or disbelieves in god. We make it an argument between faith and reason.

In my opinion this is a moot issue.

Both faith and reason have their respective places in our lives, but we try to make it an argument of whether or not it is less noble to accept something on the basis of pure faith than it is to demand tangible evidence as a prerequisite of our belief. Both sides have solid arguments and the likelihood of one side objectively winning out over the other is very slim.

I think that a more important question is what is god.

To me god has become an ambiguous catchall term that serves a lot of different functions to a lot of different people. If we are talking about an anthropomorphic deity that is completely autonomous that exists somewhere far off in the ether of space or an alternate dimension who created the universe and will inevitably judge us for or virtues and transgression when we die and subsequently determine our eternal destiny I say of course that god doesn't exist, never has.

But if you are speaking of god as a convenient way of referring to that aspect of individual and collective consciousness that transcends the ego and has the ability the influence and act upon that which is seemingly beyond our reach as far as our ego is concerned, then I say yes, absolutely.

But this is not religion. It is psychology, and physics, and yes, a little bit of faith, because we aren't quite at that point where cognitive psychology can show hard evidence of such things, but we are close.

By standard definition I am an atheist, but I do use the term god in regard to my beliefs more as a matter of semantic convenience than anything else. Does that mean that I believe in god?

Well I don't know. I think it's a question that needs some refinement, but for most people's purposes the answer is No.
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:15 AM   #153 (permalink)
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that question should have been "what kind of evidence would you expect God to leave behind?" if God did exist, what 'hard evidence' would convince you of it? what Kierkegaard and Pascal do is not provide hard evidence, they provide profound queries, they look at life in ways people generally do not, from multiple perspectives, with incredible depth.

when you distinguish between considering yourself spiritual and sensing divine influence you're to me just playing with words. i see them as the same thing. if something is 'spiritual,' that implies a spirit, and if that spirituality is common to all living things that implies a spirit that resides within all living things, and that's all I'm talking about when I say 'God' (although there are other conceptions, of course)

in that regard, yes, you would be bereft of your emotions, love of music and compassion if there were no God, because those very things are expressions of God, they are how we know God.

you say truth is important, but what is truth? if you think that's a stupid question, then you must not realize there are many different ways of thinking about truth, and that anyone truly concerned with finding out "the Truth" must be ready to attack the notion of Truth itself, to see what it is made of, to explore the different perspectives on it.

for this reason it really saddens me to put reading Kierkegaard or Pascal down to a "waste of time." at least then admit that looking for Truth is also a waste of time.

you ask, could subjective phenomena exist without God? I believe in God, though I do not know the nature of God. however, the two ways in which I usually think about God is either as the source of subjective phenomena (that is, we experience love because we are indirectly experiencing God) or the totality of subjective phenomena (that is, God is love and hate and beauty and revulsion etc.). so again, no i do not think subjective phenomena would be possible without God. I think subjective phenomena must have a source, and that this source cannot be material objects since the very idea of a 'material object' is simply 'that which we do not recognize as a subject.' for me, the very existence of emotions (the very existence of the universe) is a proof of God, which is nothing but the proof that the Universe wants to exist. another way of saying the same thing is "I have a will, I am part of the Universe, therefore the Universe has will(s), hence the Universe is personal, hence I can call it God, since God is the notion of a personal entity that transcends my boundaries"
Maybe. . . . probably not.
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:19 AM   #154 (permalink)
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Self-sacrifice for complete strangers isn't coded in, it's a rejection of our base instinct of flight, a reflection of some higher understanding.

Or some **** to that effect. I'm just presenting ideas.
how do you know that self-sacrifice for complete strangers is not coded into our instincts?

how do you know it isnt an instinctual urge to preserve a member of our species?
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:23 AM   #155 (permalink)
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because it would happen more?
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:25 AM   #156 (permalink)
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how do you know that self-sacrifice for complete strangers is not coded into our instincts?

how do you know it isnt an instinctual urge to preserve a member of our species?
For a loved one, of course.
For a complete stranger? Get the **** outta here.
Have you ever thrown your life on the line for someone you didn't have any attatchment to before that moment?
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:26 AM   #157 (permalink)
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how often does that happen and even if it is rare how does that make it evidence of a "higher understanding"?
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:37 AM   #158 (permalink)
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how often does that happen and even if it is rare how does that make it evidence of a "higher understanding"?
Stream of consciouness way of putting it.
It seems like evidence because the act is beyond us. Self-preservation has always been first, and when you act for someone for no personal reason, or otherwise future gain you set your only "real" object of worth, being your very temporary existence at stake. For someone you would in any other time not even compose a thought to recognize. It's too random and frankly borders on insanity. Yet it's something we should all be doing.

But again, idle thoughts.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:57 AM   #159 (permalink)
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what sort of evidence do you expect God to leave behind? it's like you're looking for God's signature in the world, when the world is God's signature.
a sort of cop-out i think, considering the existence of everything does not necessitate the conclusion of a god existing. to combat this, a scientist may argue that the universe looks exactly as it would without a god.

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as Leibniz put it: "why is there something rather than nothing?"
a question we've all at one point wondered, but not a warranted one in my opinion. the idea of nothing existing is entirely human imagination at work. from our perspective, it would seem that things are coming into and going out of existence everyday. because of this we can imagine nothing existing, but based on a flawed premise. i've argued this way before, but while we see what appears to be things going in and out of existence, nothing truly has. if only we had a firmer grasp of this reality, questions like the one from liebniz or questions of "creation" would look increasingly more absurd in my opinion. by the way, isn't the existence of nothing a self-refuting idea? it seems to me that it is.

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why do things want to exist? is it really that subjectivity is a phenomena of objects (what does that even mean?) or is it rather that objects (the very idea of an object) is a phenomena of subjectivity? everyone seems to start from what they don't know (ie, what they've been taught--science) rather from what they do know... emotions, interpersonal relationships, desire--for meaning, companionship, reward for overcoming urges that set us against others... why isn't all that evidence? basically what people seem to be looking for when they demand evidence of god's existence is a miracle, that is, they expect God to undo the logic of his own creation. why would he do that? because you want him to? the entire atheistic attitude towards God is entirely backwards, which is why they have a hard time understanding Christian arguments.
not sure how you come to the conclusion that "emotions, interpersonal relationships, desire--for meaning, companionship, reward for overcoming urges that set us against others" can only exist with god. it seems to me you're merely begging the question.
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Old 07-26-2009, 11:15 AM   #160 (permalink)
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To me god has become an ambiguous catchall term that serves a lot of different functions to a lot of different people. If we are talking about an anthropomorphic deity that is completely autonomous that exists somewhere far off in the ether of space or an alternate dimension who created the universe and will inevitably judge us for or virtues and transgression when we die and subsequently determine our eternal destiny I say of course that god doesn't exist, never has.

But if you are speaking of god as a convenient way of referring to that aspect of individual and collective consciousness that transcends the ego and has the ability the influence and act upon that which is seemingly beyond our reach as far as our ego is concerned, then I say yes, absolutely.
quoted for truth.
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