A Perfect World?

Discussion in 'Free Thoughts' started by Bowser, Jun 19, 2019.

  1. sweetpea Valued Senior Member

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    Are you a Hindu now Bowser?
    Trying to make sense of pain and suffering by the anthropocentricity of nature, that is giving Nature itself an intelligence, seems funny.
    I agree , there's just Nature.
    Exactly, we can have these same feelings and deep understanding of oneself without the need to anthropomorphize Nature (make a god of it).
    -------
    To a believer in a god...
    A new born baby dying 10 minutes after birth, a three or four year old suffering two years of cancer before dying, where does the ''beauty of ourselves'' become comprehendible to that baby or child ?
     
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  3. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Everyone suffers in this life. Does this mean I should cease to believe that a god exists? If there were no suffering at all ...would you believe in a higher power? I can only speak for me, but I too wrestle with these things...and don't understand ''why'' children have to suffer, why the Holocaust happened, why women are treated like second class citizens in India and other parts of the world, etc...

    But, again, if we lived in a Utopia, would that be the only acceptable reason to believe in God? Suffering in my opinion, doesn't mean God doesn't exist. It doesn't mean (to me) that God isn't loving.
     
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  5. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    I keep thinking the "why suffering?" argument is a straw man, erected by God skeptics.

    There is a premise (sometimes implicit, sometimes explicit) among many skeptics that God must be so all-loving that all he wants is to coddle humans and provide a paradise for them.

    I am not sure that all (or any) God believers actually think this is what God is like. Thus, skeptics are attacking a concept that no one actually asserts.


    (I am a God skeptic, but I abhor flawed or weak arguments.)
     
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  7. sweetpea Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, plain and suffering happens, but why the need to then anthropomorphize Nature by giving it an intelligence? Make a god of it.
    But, the weak point there is, there is always suffering, that's Nature. Utopia is just an fictional idea. (Yes, I know it was a book).
    That's just it, we live in the real world, that's pain and suffering. Why is this god idea popping up at all?
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
  8. sweetpea Valued Senior Member

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    The Bible has jesus healing the sick, why?
     
  9. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    Even just to be good you have contentment.
     
  10. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    ??
    Why not?


    I'm trying to divine your thought process:
    God allows suffering. Therefore God actively wants humans to suffer, and would prevent anyone (even Jesus) from treating that suffering.


    Two ways your question could go:
    1] Jesus is a man, and has empathy. Presumably it is God's wish that men help other humans.
    2] Just because Gods permits suffering doesn't mean he intends to smite anyone who tries to comfort or aide someone who is suffering.


    Again the caveat. I don't believe in God, but I think not understanding the internal logic of God belief and drawing flawed conclusions is not helpful.

    We hate it when Creationists, ignorant of evolution, erect straw men to attack. It's not OK for us to use the same flawed tactic.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
  11. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    I tend to view the universe as determined, because it has a preciseness to it. It lends itself to having an intelligent ''creator'' behind it. I can't prove that to you, but it's a spiritual path that I have chosen to return to. I left faith for a time (identified as an atheist) and didn't think this way at all.
     
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  12. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Well, I guess if they were ''god''...there'd be no suffering. It seems that those who use that argument believe that a world with suffering indicates that a god can't exist, let alone a loving god. I get it. I can't say I didn't think it when I left faith, but that wasn't how I came to be an atheist for a few years.
     
  13. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Is an all-loving, all forgiving god that desires only happiness and no pain for humans something that you have heard a real person espouse?

    Or have you only seen in the over-simplified scriptures ("lies to children")?

    I doubt anyone here (such as Wegs or Bowser or even Jan) espouses such a concept. If one is going to attack a specific flavour of God, one must take it up with someone who actually espouses that view.


    (Imagine if a Creationist read only pop articles on evolution. Do you think they would have an accurate idea of what actual evolutionary scientists espouse? Or erecting strawmen left right and centre?)
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Wait. You were a believer, then you disbelieved, then you re-believed?

    That must be a rare bird indeed.

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  15. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    haha Right?

    If I'm honest, I think I followed religion at one time, not necessarily God. My views were wrapped up in what a religion taught me to believe. The rituals, traditions, and other bells and whistles were more of what I was hanging onto, than a philosophical understanding of God, if that makes sense. So, over time, it faded away for me...and recently, I came back to belief. But, this time, without religion.
     
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  16. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    I think their point is more along the lines of ''why would anyone want to follow a god who permits suffering?''

    That's not really a strawman, it's just an argument that doesn't make sense to me, because it implies that unless we live in a utopia...only then, will the notion of a god's existence make sense.
     
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  17. Neddy Bate Valued Senior Member

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    Hmm, good point. To me it's more along the lines of "why would anyone want to follow a god who is so flawed?" I mean the god of the bible has some character traits which seem to be more flawed than what "God" with a capital G should have. But maybe that is just how he is, and that is supposed to be taken at face value? I don't know. When I was religious I thought he must be perfect, but I'm not sure where I got that idea.
     
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  18. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Ah. This fits in with my view of how ideas evolve.

    Full-on belief > Full-on rejection > Acceptance.
    I don't question police > I actively reject police > I appreciate police.
    I love Desposito > I hate Desposito > I abide Desposito.
    The pendulum swings far left > The pendulum swings far right > The pendulum come to rest in the middle.
    Thesis > Antithesis > Synthesis.

    When you see someone vehemently object to a given thing, they are merely in stage 2, not yet advanced to stage 3.

    Gotta word-smith on those terms tho.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
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  19. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Personally, I see God as wishing to have a relationship with us, not forced submission, so to speak. We have the ability to make choices, and God designed it this way, imo. I think we can agree that we have the ability to make our own choices (because we obviously can), even if it's illusory. In those choices, good and bad can happen - and so God is ''perfect'' in the sense that nothing takes him by surprise. The next question could easily be...''well, if he knows that humans would be destructive, why create free will?''

    Because we would freely choose to seek God...or not. Just how I've come to see it for myself. Of course, I finally feel ''safe'' saying...''I don't know,'' when it comes to God, and having doubts, myself. Religion never let me do that. Religion created a fear in me, and caused me to see God as something malevolent, at times.

    I don't think that believing in God means suddenly, one has all the answers, or that one never doubts. Spirituality is mysterious, complex and simple, all at the same time. It's often what we discover about ourselves on the journey, that is most intriguing.

    If no one agrees with me, that's okay. I think that's where a lot of religious people get hung up, actually - they have a prideful need to push their views onto non-believers. It becomes more about them than God, anyway.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2019
  20. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

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    Does it need a name, SP?

    Are you not a creature of nature? Are you not intelligent?
     
  21. sweetpea Valued Senior Member

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    Dave, It's not just about the pain and suffering angle. What is the subject or object of a believer's praying? Keeping things good for themselves and loved ones? Thanks for food and health? Does that suggest they believe their god has control over these things? What about, thanks for letting themselves exist to see the beauty of the world and not letting them have an illness that would not allow them to do that? Do these things seem like ''pleads'', don't hurt me?
    BTW, It's Bowser's god ''who is everything,'' even me, that's what I like playing with here.
    Jesus and I are God. We both like to help others (God) when his sick.
    I'm a God:
    I'm a god.
    Been here, done this before with you.
    I'm a product of Nature. Intelligence may be an evolutionary dead end.

    Don't waste your time there Dave, I'm bouncing around. I'm shaking the bushes to see what comes out.
     
  22. Bowser Namaste Valued Senior Member

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    Still not satisfied?

    It is if you forget who you are.
     
  23. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    OK, but if it's a sincere query (as opposed to a slap down) then one is obliged to ask one question - and entertain the answer - at a time. Otherwise, it's just a cheap attempt to carpet-bomb one's opponent.

    But I'm still stuck on whether it's a strawman in the first place. Who exactly is claiming the things you said, above? It's not sufficient to hand wave "they all do it" or "it's written". That certainly wouldn't fly if a Creationist tried it about evolution.

    Now, get Bowser to tell us why God allows suffering** - and what prayer accomplishes - and you'll have something to dismantle.


    **operative phrase: Yes, tell us. Not 'respond to questions by asking more questions'. I'm looking at you, Bowser.

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    Responding to a question with more questions was Jan's technique. He abdicated responsibility for defending his own beliefs because he did not have the courage of his convictions.

    It would be refreshing to hear from a believer who does have the courage of their convictions. I'm looking at you, Bowser.

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