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My opinion of our belief in god

Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by Remus, Mar 24, 2005.

  1. Remus

    Remus Bit Poster

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    I was watching a program on bbc 1 last night called 'Why do Bad Things Happen to People?', which made me ask myself one question-

    Why do people insist on believing in ‘god’?

    What makes people think that that our planet, our civilization, a tiny insignificant spec of dust in a universe we can’t yet comprehend, is overseen by a ‘higher being’? And the best thing is, why do people believe that ‘god’ created us in his/her (usually his, I’m guessing men wrote the bible) image?
    The point I’m getting to is that people think they are important, at least on a universal scale. An example of this is the fact that many of us ask ‘god’ to oversee our daily actions, families, friends and so on. What makes them think they are so important that the supposed ‘creator of all’ should protect them? Or help them in any way?

    Back to my ‘why did god create us in his image’ question. So, we think this ‘god’ looks like us. Well ain’t that a surprise. A higher being, the creator of all, looks like………us. Well aren’t we important.
    Why do we think that we have a soul? Why do we think that this ‘soul’ of ours goes to a ‘heaven’ when we die? I ask you, do ants have souls? What about caterpillars? Rabbits? Hamsters? No. They don’t have them do they. You see we are more important than them aren’t we?
    Let’s put this into perspective people. WE ARE NOT IMPORTANT. Do we think ants are important? No. We’d rather kill them. You see, on a universal scale, we are billions of times more insignificant than ants seem to us. We are nothing but specs on a tiny planet in a tiny galaxy with a below average star as our sun. When we die, we do nothing but decompose and feed the soil like we’re meant to, but we don’t want to believe that do we? Because we are too IMPORTANT.

    Ok I’m getting myself worked up now, so I’ll get back to my point. People are more willing to believe in a ‘god’ than they are in themselves, their families, friends, or anyone else for that matter. It’s a control thing you see. When we feel something is out of our control, we feel the need to believe in something that can take control, and will take control. It makes us feel safer, more important.

    I’m not important. You aren’t important. Nobody is important. The animals, insects and trees in the few natural ecosystems left around the world are what matter, at least on a planetary scale. But we don’t care about that.

    Anyways, what I believe is whoever wrote the bible has sure made a hell of an influence on us. More so than they ever comprehended I’m sure.

    Also, the sooner people realize that religion is the world’s biggest killer, the better.

    Phew! Glad that's off my chest :blink
     
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  2. Phoenix
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    Phoenix 53656e696f7220 4d6f64

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    Interesting post, and i'm sure it will spark off a heated debate :)
    I know we have a few religious members on the board, with various different believes

    I share some of your thoughts, although not all of your presumptions :)

    We are important, we rose to become the dominant species of our planet, we evolved and improved our knowlege to the point that we can reach out and touch other worlds, as time goes on we will expand from our little planet, to multiple little planets, and with technology on our side, perhaps even other galaxies

    I dont really believe in 'god' but I do believe in higher powers, be it more intelligent life, or more intelligent something that we cant even comprehend yet, the simple answer is we are not alone, and were not at the top of THAT food chain yet!

    I think the majority of belief stems from a period in time when humanity needed direction, and it found it where it could, people needed faith in something, it helped guide them, helped do something, all I know is that yes, some people needed that faith, and some still do

    What i really DON'T aggree with, is how the actions of religious people dictate our direction as a society today, we have the ones saying cloning is bad, the ones saying genetic engineering is bad, the ones saying everything is bad, its rediculous, if you believe in your god then surely you must realise (being that we are created in his image obviously) that he MEANT for us to discover technology, and discover genetics, and embrace science, otherwise, it just wouldnt exist would it? bloody twits

    And religious war pisses me off too, really, i dont give a shite what you call your invisible friend, or whos invisible friend is better, just keep your invisible friend to yourself and dont tell me i have to 'find god' or such, as i really dont like having someone elses beliefs imposed upon me, and hence i dont really impose mine on them (although i suppose this post could warrant such action) :/

    Ahh well, religion will likely die out as science improves and more and more generations of people wake up from the brain washing given to them by thier parents
     
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  3. Remus

    Remus Bit Poster

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    You are quite right.

    We may be important when it comes to finding other worlds, I'm sure time will tell.

    But when it comes to thinking we are important enough to sacrifice ourselves and others in the name of belief, then I think we as a race of people have gone too far, which is one of the main points of my post.

    The other point is that when you need to believe in something to get you through a particular time in your life, believe in yourself. Not an ideal.
     
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  4. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    I am **so** not going to enter this debate. I'm already involved in a couple of major threads on another forum based on similar issues. I can only say that we all have "faith" in something...even secular humanists.
     
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  5. drum_dude

    drum_dude Gigabyte Poster

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    I must say that I do agree with a heck of a lot of what Remus says. I watched that program last night and did find myself asking the same sort of questions!

    On another note, I downloaded a Channel 4 program last week called "what we don't know" (i think the title is right) and it did try to address some of the aspects that Phoenix mentions about the cosmos, however, it raised lots more questions on ours and the universises existance! Such as mathamatical values that are required for the universes existence are very precise, even to the point that they seem too precise to be by chance??? Does this suggest the existence of a creator?? Who knows but the Cosmologists on the program seem to think that our Universe and other Universes (Multiverses) maybe part of a "experiment" etc etc...theories are endless.

    The other question that Cosmologists raise is the "reality" of our reality but I'm not going to get into that one because I lost track of what they were saying by then...lol!!!
     
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  6. Phoenix
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    Phoenix 53656e696f7220 4d6f64

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    hehe, you dont want to see the trip wrath unleashed on this thread :P

    Drum_dude, i had a similar conversation with some friends many years ago (well before the matrix ever hit the shelves) about the universe, and what it actually was all about, weather or not we were just the ant farm equivilant of beings unconcievable to us (anyone remember the closing scene to MIB?), or even if we were just a simulation of sorts, albiet it with a level of AI unbeknownst to us :)

    having been a Sci Fi fan most of my life, it sounded like i was on crack when talking to them, but many many philosophical questions go unanswered and many more crop up with every one answered, we are small in the scale of things that vast, as Remus points out, so its really not suprising we cant comprehend/answer everything just yet, especially being we thought the world was flat just a few hundred years ago

    I dont buy the precise measurements being too precise to be chance, to be honest, in hindsight ofcourse they were all precise, to cause what we have now, they had to be a perticular value, or we would have something else, lol, we hardly have some kind of benchmark to compare those values against though do we :)

    Its an interesting subject that crops up on many a sunday evening down the pub with my friends (ones a Theoretical Physicist), often lead to some great debates and ideas about 'what is' :)
     
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  7. punkboy101
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    punkboy101 Back from the wilderness

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    Hmmm, interesting thread, something that I actualy have quite a strong opinion on. :D

    I do believe that there is a "higher" being of some sort, although I believ that orginised religion has it all wrong. I believ that allot of the stuff in the bible was written because people didn't have any idea about the scientific side of things and needed some way to explain it. Just to illistrate this point, a friend of mine, his mum has decided the earth is only 10'000 years old and that fossils were put there by the devil to decieve us. :hhhmmm:lol:


    Allot of the problems in the world today are to do with religion, and who is right. They have missed the whole point, and rathere than love and care for one another (like religion is meant to be), it has been hijkacked by fundamentalist (ALL religions, not just muslims lol), who see it as their right and duty to force it upon others. This is so wrong!!

    I saw a thing recently about the catholic church, and it showed them in Africa telling people not to use birth control because god says it is wrong. This is a continent plauged by aids and other STD's, and over population, and these clowns are down there telling them that condoms are a bad thing. :x What a load of bull.

    Anyway, I could go on all day about this, so I won't, but I will follow this thread with interest. :D
     
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  8. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

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    speak for ureself guys. i believe in many gods. i believe in a single divine entity, which is the universe. it is everything and everyone in the universe at the same time (think of us like cells in an organism). i believe that everything in the universe has a soul, in one form or another. what we think of as gods (such as hecate, kali, the christian god, allah, etc) i believe are created by our belief in them. they exist only because we allow them to exist and believe in their existance (perhaps at one point in the distant past they were just spirits, but our believe has increased their power). to them, we ARE important, but only because we created them, and because they dont know much about the universe beyond this world.

    i wouldnt say we are more important than the ants in the world, but that doesnt mean that i wont kill them, or eat the cows. thats the way life is. equally, if a tiger finds me and is hungry, it would likely kill me, because thats the way life is, its harsh and cruel.

    religion is a crutch for some people. they say that if they were meant to have it, god would give it to them, but if you try and attain it yourself, then perhaps god may provide you with an opportunity for it. the gods arent here to make life easy, after all, whats the point in living if its all too easy, but they do help us experience life!

    at the end of the day, everyone believes in something, the key is to stop thinking that the devil makes us a bad person - we are a bad person because its in our nature. get over it!

    Fergal
     
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  9. Remus

    Remus Bit Poster

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    I was talking to a mate of mine about this the other night.

    He made one very valid point - that believing in god and a divine plan is more comforting than thinking that the reason we are here is by a freak accident.

    Exactly.

    I accept it gave us a reason to live in the early years, something to guide us, but the more advanced we get the more reason that we shouldn't NEED to believe in something so scientifically void.
     
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  10. Bluerinse
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    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Firstly let me just say that I am disapointed in Trip for not posting his perspective in this thread. I am certain that it would have made intellegent arguments and helped some of us non-believers understand why people have faith. Jim come on and enlighten us if you can :)

    I have always had problems believing in god/s. If there is a god why did he make me so sceptical? Why did he make me sooo logical. I am proud of my logic, which if it is a god given talent then it seems odd that it is that very logic that prohibits me having faith.

    If god created the universe, then where was he before it was created and what did he do, oh and where did he come from?

    One thing I really do believe, is that there is more to life, than meets the eye. Just gotta work out what it is :rolleyes:

    If there is a god, why did he create mossies?

    Pete
     
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  11. tripwire45
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    Sorry to disappoint you, Pete. I certainly feel I would be the minority opinion here and after my "interesting" experiences at places like "Truthaddict", I am somewhat "gun shy" about entering conversations on issues of faith.

    I am also involved in two separate threads on another tech forum that are very heated. I guess I just don't want to tilt at too many windmills all at once. I may choose to weigh in on this one at some point, but I'll have to decide when I feel it is right for me to do so.
     
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  12. Bluerinse
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    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Of course Trip, it is YOUR choice, no worries!

    :cry:

    Pete
     
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  13. wizard

    wizard Petabyte Poster

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    Many people believe in a god because it gives their life some sort of structure, some written codes to live their life by instead of leading a chaotic existence, not knowing where to turn. I used to be a relgious person, but drifted away from it over the years, I do sometimes turn back to religion if I feel that I'm completely out of control and I can't seem to stop a downward spiral.

    Also just because you are a religious person doesn't mean that you have to follow just one belief system, as I call them. I believe you can mix and match these systems to suit your lifestyle. I would feel empty and unfulfilled if I were to strictly follow one belief system.
     
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  14. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    One of the assumptions that is being made here is that when science sufficiently explains the universe, there will no longer be a need to have faith in a Creator. It suggests that people of faith are holding on to an ancient and outmoded need to explain the universe and their place in it through supernatural means.

    This conversations (and it's quite similar to others I've been involved with) always reminds me of a classic transaction between Mr. Spock and Dr. McCoy on the original Star Trek series. The Enterprise is trying to find a way to stop an enormous one celled space going organism (I'm not kidding, the name of the episode is "The Immunity Syndrome"). Both McCoy and Spock wanted to take a shuttle into the creatures to study it's composition. This is pretty much a suicide mission and Kirk had to decide which one of his friends to send on it. Kirk ultimately picks Spock which really torques McCoy off.

    At the entrance to the shuttlebay, McCoy is giving Spock some last minute instructions on some of the medical tests he wants run. Spock mentions that he knows McCoy is upset with Spock and continues:

    Spock: "You could at least grant me my own kind of dignity".

    McCoy: (key phrase here) "How can I grant you what I don't understand"?

    Spock: "Then employ one of your Earth superstitions. Wish me luck".

    At this point in the transaction, McCoy just looks at Spock but doesn't reply. After a few seconds, Spock turns away and enters the shuttle bay. The camera watches Spocks figure receed into the distance towards the shuttle while McCoy is seen apparently thinking. As we see Spock enter the shuttle, McCoy murmurs:

    "Good luck, Spock".

    I guess my point in all this is that if you don't have an experience of a life of faith, you may not be able to "grant" to people of faith, "that which you don't understand".

    One passage of the Bible says:

    "The unspiritual man does not receive the gifts of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned". -1 Corinthians 2:14

    I could go on, but that's pretty much my perspective on debates such as this one. :)
     
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  15. Jakamoko
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    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    My personal take is pretty much non-religious, but I believe fully in fate and destiny. Things are meant to happen for a reason, even if those reasons are often far from clear at the time. My mother use to take me to Church (I capitalise the "C" out of respect from my mother's continuing belief in her God). At around age 10 or 11, I just could not reconcile what I was seeing in the world around me, and decided (controversially in our family) that I was no longer going to be part of organised religion as such, although I will continue to respect of those who do.

    I am also a deep believer in science and the logical rules that largely goverened what we see see created before us today (with no small amount of luck along the way, it has to be said - fate again)

    As far as reconciling religion with science (for those who feel the need), I personally feel no-one put it better than than deeply Christian uber-scientist Stephen Hawking, who when quizzed about how he justified his beliefs in light of his massive contribution to quantum physics, mathematics and the rules of the creation of sentient beings, described his life's work to date quite simply as follows:

    "It is like looking into the mind of God"
     
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  16. Bluerinse
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    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    I don't have any facts or statistics to support this notion, but it strikes me that there is a move away from relegion happening in England, which is not so apparent in the US or Australia.

    If there is a heaven it will be virtually pom free :eek:

    Pete
     
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  17. tripwire45
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    Well said, Stephen. The Bible talks about there being two ways that G-d is revealed to the world; one is the written revelation of the Bible and the other is the revelation of creation.
     
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  18. Remus

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    I get a little angry when people come out with comments like this. I can't understand how people can bring themselves (let alone dare) to believe that our futures are already set in stone, as well as the futures of those less fortunate than ourselves (remember Holly and Jessica anyone?). I believe anyone willing enough to say this is willing enough to believe that those two young girls were born to be raped and mudered by a sick b****rd (Usually when I hit them with this comment they turn around and say, "erm....well I meant the fate of the universe...." - Talk about stating the obvious :dunce )

    What would be the point in an existance without choice anyway?


    My two cents on 'Fate'.
     
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  19. Jakamoko
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    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Hey Remus, obviously I've hit a nerve with your personally on this one, but given the nature of our discussion so far, I don't (and won't) feel the need to apologise. I never said that the reasons for why things happen are obvious, and as always, it will always be possible to reply to a claim with a counter-claim.

    I stand by what I posted above, in that for me, it is what makes most sense to how I (and those around me, most notably my family) have come to where we are today. I do not state that what I say is 100% right, or even indesputable in anyway, but is what I currently believe in, and makes the most sense to me for any given explanation of matters of this nature.

    My opinion - which, like yourself, is what we are all entitled to.
     
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  20. Phoenix
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    Phoenix 53656e696f7220 4d6f64

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    Actually, no offense mate, but I get a little angry when I see comments like this
    like I said before, I have my beliefs, and I get peeved off when others try to force thiers upon me, but I do not tollerate people who want to act all high and mighty but are not open minded enough to understand everyone is able to have thier own belief, and its a choice they make

    Jak believes in Fate, and Destiny, good for him, he believes that his destination in life is set, but he still choses the path he takes to reach that goal (and ofcourse in earlier life, his parents did), infact, thats a pretty reasonable assumption, we're born, we die, what happens in between is down to us, what happens at the end we already know

    as for your example, they were both children, thier path in life was not yet in thier hands, it was in the hands of thier parents, and at the mercy of the person who chose to destroy it, both of whom chose thier life, and the actions they took in that life, thier parents chose how to bring up thier children, and the evil bastard chose that he was going to be a sick **** and ruin peoples lifes, those poor girls were caught in the middle of it, and had very little say in the matter, personally i dont think that example has any place in this kind of discussion, and is highly irrelivant, but i digress


    if you want to keep this topic open, please remain open minded, and do not judge those for thier contributions to it, i dont condone censorship, but i wont watch this thread get out of hand or turn into a flame fest

    those are MY two cents :)
     
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