Agnostics

norwegen

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What do you mean, my man?
I mean we can lack true understanding of what was written and why. Who was the original author? Who was his original audience? What lesson/theme was he presenting? (Clue: It wasn't about a God who is mean.)
Id say his actions were pretty darn mean. And other negative characteristic i pointed out earlier.
Adam and Moses were generations of idolatrous people; their deity was largely indistinguishable from other deities. "None is righteous," lamented David. "No, not one."

God was easy to blame for atrocities that the people themselves committed (or that were mere acts of nature).
I am going by what the bible actually says. Not what people want to believe.
Yea, that's what the Bible actually says. I even quoted David.

Read it; their forsaking of God is a theme throughout the Old Testament. So as their age declined, they lamented that fact:

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. (Rom 1:21-23)​
 
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Meriweather

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Id say his actions were pretty darn mean. And other negative characteristic i pointed out earlier.
What is the point of the story? Do you think it is likely that the author's point was to paint God in a negative light? If that was not his point, then what is?

Also remember the culture of the day. Natural phenomenon and the consequences of mankind's own actions seemed (in our language) to be assigned to God, yet look deeper and we see what was readily apparent to the audience of that day: Mankind was at fault, mankind brought these events down upon themselves while God was shown as striving to restore goodness. We have to learn to look at the world from a different perspective. Next, there are an abundance of references to God as both they and we perceive Him. Love, mercy, justice--and for us to look and find God in the smallest of things, not the great and powerful natural events.
 
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Meriweather

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You seem like a nice person. Not much of that around here. The only real issue I have with religion has nothing to do with religion itself. It's about me. I have a medical condition that prevents me from trusting people. It's called Pistanthrophobia, and I've had it all my life. I figure if your going to be religious, you kinda need to be able to trust. I can't.
I wanted to ponder this for awhile as this condition was unknown to me and something that is almost impossible for me to imagine as I tend to be very trusting. The one question that keeps coming to mind is, Do you trust yourself?

I try to keep in mind that Jesus did not teach religion, exactly, but that religion did grow around him. Jesus taught The Way. His Way was to discern the will of God (or in the case of agnostics/atheists) the way of love and goodness and do it. Jesus was also adamant that sins are forgiven. Turn away from sin, but don't leave it there--replace those sinful actions with something good. He taught emptiness only invited something worse.

What I can understand quite well is that the image as God as Father is of a Being to be avoided. I had issues with my mom (more accurately, she had issues with me) and the thought of Mary being the mother of us all is something I still avoid. I do not need another mother. I try to honor Mary for the traits she possessed, but I still feel better not thinking of her much at all.
 
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Meriweather

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I am going by what the bible actually says. Not what people want to believe.
There is a world of difference between going by the perspective of 21st century modern English and Western culture and the original intent of the author and ancestral cultures. Could it be that you have chosen what you want to believe?
 

Billyboom

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I wanted to ponder this for awhile as this condition was unknown to me and something that is almost impossible for me to imagine as I tend to be very trusting. The one question that keeps coming to mind is, Do you trust yourself?
I do not. It takes me a very long time to make a decision. I have to look at it from every possible angle.
There is one person I actually do trust. He has been my Shifu, bandmate and friend for the last 10 years.
 
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Meriweather

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I've always been of the mind that if there is a supreme all knowing all powerful being that I shouldn't have to attend church for that being to know what's in my heart and mind
Do you happen to feel the same way about family celebrations, including the family dinner? The family should know how you feel and therefore you shouldn't have to show up for any family event for people to know what is in your heart and mind?

Community worship isn't just about you and what is between you and God. What is between the individual and God can/should be done in private prayer. But, just like in family, we are part of something greater than self, and that greater part should not only be respected, but acknowledged as well. Church/Synagogue/Temple is not just about our individual love of God, and His love for the individual, it extends to our love of each other and our love of God as a community.
 
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Meriweather

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There is one person I actually do trust. He has been my Shifu, bandmate and friend for the last 10 years.
And I can see you treasure that experience of trust. My prayer for you is that the roots of that one trust will spread and sprout yet another bloom of trust.
 

Blues Man

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I've always been of the mind that if there is a supreme all knowing all powerful being that I shouldn't have to attend church for that being to know what's in my heart and mind
Do you happen to feel the same way about family celebrations, including the family dinner? The family should know how you feel and therefore you shouldn't have to show up for any family event for people to know what is in your heart and mind?

Community worship isn't just about you and what is between you and God. What is between the individual and God can/should be done in private prayer. But, just like in family, we are part of something greater than self, and that greater part should not only be respected, but acknowledged as well. Church/Synagogue/Temple is not just about our individual love of God, and His love for the individual, it extends to our love of each other and our love of God as a community.

my family members aren't all powerful all knowing supreme beings are they?
 

Blues Man

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my family members aren't all powerful all knowing supreme beings are they?
Must they be before you acknowledge them?
Anyone can acknowledge a supreme being anytime they want from anywhere and the supreme being will know.

No one in my family is a supreme being so for them to know what I think of them I must actually tell them or they can infer it from my actions toward them.
 
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Meriweather

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Anyone can acknowledge a supreme being anytime they want from anywhere and the supreme being will know.

No one in my family is a supreme being so for them to know what I think of them I must actually tell them or they can infer it from my actions toward them.
My point is, do you do things with your family as a group, or your community as a group? Or do you insist on eating with only one person at a time, or having a party with one person at a time? Do you ever gather with more than one person?
 

alang1216

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To believe in the supernatural I'd have to experience the supernatural. I never have. There are miracles throughout the Bible, how about one for me? Maybe a burning bush? Even a small one would do, just so it offers no natural explanation.
As someone who has experienced the supernatural, I advise to think this through. Think of the most amazing thing that you have done with the realization that this was a one-time experience. There may be few, if any more, like it. I have often had the rueful thought that there is a reason there are so few supernatural experiences: It cannot help but be the most addicting event ever...and it only lasted seconds, a minute or two at the most.

Jesus observed, "Blessed are they who have not seen yet believe." Take my word on this. They are indeed blessed.
My philosophy is exactly the opposite. I believe in nothing I can't see for myself. It has keep me from believing in many things I think are false: aliens, leprechauns, ghosts, sasquatch, etc. Do you believe in them? Why or why not?
 

alang1216

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It worked the other way for me. I determined that organized religions were mere traditions without any validity and since they were the sole source of knowledge of the God of the Bible, I realized I was an atheist, I was 12. However, as I learned about the Big Bang I realized it was impossible to say if there was a creator or not so I was ALSO an agnostic. I've been both ever since as I've never encountered anything to change my views.
What kind of encounter might change your views?
To believe in the supernatural I'd have to experience the supernatural. I never have. There are miracles throughout the Bible, how about one for me? Maybe a burning bush? Even a small one would do, just so it offers no natural explanation.
What do you consider miraculous? Surviving a collision with a telephone pole, or narrowly being missed by a falling tree? Maybe it's walking home from school and arriving moments before a violent storm broke or perhaps making it to the shore before the ice gave way?
What about not being burned or blinded by a firecracker exploding inside a molten burning plastic model plane, or getting home unscathed driving drunk and not remembering doing it? How about driving to and from college 7 hours each way and finding out that the radiator and front end of the car being driven were completely separated (the frame had rotted through) but didn't know it until after safely arriving home? What about losing a job; however, the money was still there to pay the mortgage and taxes and put food on the table besides? What about finding a job while wanting another, and finding out that the position really desired was at a place that would close a year later? Maybe it's remembering one's lines in a play and overcoming total stage fright to complete a memorable performance, or not engaging in a fight when the bully failed to show up! What about the woman who had every cause for divorce and yet gave it another go, or a baby being born to a couple who had been trying for years...
We really do trivialize so many things and cast them aside, and yet one could very well have missed a miracle.
Of course any of those might be supernatural but it's not obvious that it must be so and none pass the Occam's Razor test.
 

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Anyone can acknowledge a supreme being anytime they want from anywhere and the supreme being will know.

No one in my family is a supreme being so for them to know what I think of them I must actually tell them or they can infer it from my actions toward them.
My point is, do you do things with your family as a group, or your community as a group? Or do you insist on eating with only one person at a time, or having a party with one person at a time? Do you ever gather with more than one person?
Christianity is most certainly a very social sect, and highly encourages a high commitment to communitarianism, one of the main reasons it became so popular evern in the face of brutal oppressions and violence. The early Quakers didn't have leaders in their services, people just sat contemplatively and shared whatever thoughts they had on a topic, and everyone with an opinion weighed in it, a practice I found interesting. I can't find where it was required that everyone had to be exactly the same and in lockstep with all others anywhere in the NT, for that matter. I think it obvious the reason that there are so many denominations is because there are so many different needs, and they are not all automatically incompatible with each other, though obviusly a few will be.
 

Picaro

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To believe in the supernatural I'd have to experience the supernatural. I never have. There are miracles throughout the Bible, how about one for me? Maybe a burning bush? Even a small one would do, just so it offers no natural explanation.
As someone who has experienced the supernatural, I advise to think this through. Think of the most amazing thing that you have done with the realization that this was a one-time experience. There may be few, if any more, like it. I have often had the rueful thought that there is a reason there are so few supernatural experiences: It cannot help but be the most addicting event ever...and it only lasted seconds, a minute or two at the most.

Jesus observed, "Blessed are they who have not seen yet believe." Take my word on this. They are indeed blessed.
My philosophy is exactly the opposite. I believe in nothing I can't see for myself. It has keep me from believing in many things I think are false: aliens, leprechauns, ghosts, sasquatch, etc. Do you believe in them? Why or why not?
So, you believe your feet disappear and no longer exist when you put socks on?
 
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Meriweather

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My philosophy is exactly the opposite. I believe in nothing I can't see for myself. It has keep me from believing in many things I think are false: aliens, leprechauns, ghosts, sasquatch, etc. Do you believe in them? Why or why not?
The only reason you do not believe in leprechauns, elves, wizards, Big Foot, etc. is because you can't see them? At a young age, couldn't you have just asked an adult if they were real or fictional? ;)

As for ghosts, yes I do believe in ghostly appearances--not because I experienced any myself, but because a colleague of mine did. (By the way, said colleague is atheist.) Ghosts are an interesting thing. We batted back and forth whether exceptionally strong emotions could linger, and whether there was a a scientific phenomenon that might account for it. Then there was the experience my then five-year-old nephew experienced.
 
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Meriweather

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Christianity is most certainly a very social sect, and highly encourages a high commitment to communitarianism, one of the main reasons it became so popular evern in the face of brutal oppressions and violence. The early Quakers didn't have leaders in their services, people just sat contemplatively and shared whatever thoughts they had on a topic, and everyone with an opinion weighed in it, a practice I found interesting. I can't find where it was required that everyone had to be exactly the same and in lockstep with all others anywhere in the NT, for that matter. I think it obvious the reason that there are so many denominations is because there are so many different needs, and they are not all automatically incompatible with each other, though obviusly a few will be.
I'm also reminded of St. Theresa of Avila who noted that Church (or any organization) can only take the individual so far on their spiritual journey. In fact she thought if it was a seven step journey, Church can only take people about as far as the second step. I think I would like that Quaker practice.
 

BreezeWood

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On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
.

christianity, their book above quote not the religious itinerant represents circular reasoning without resolution or the definite goal the original religion of that period required for admission to the Everlasting and in fact is no different than either agnostic or atheist in regards to the conclusion of their physiological existence and the consequences of that event.
 

LittleNipper

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It worked the other way for me. I determined that organized religions were mere traditions without any validity and since they were the sole source of knowledge of the God of the Bible, I realized I was an atheist, I was 12. However, as I learned about the Big Bang I realized it was impossible to say if there was a creator or not so I was ALSO an agnostic. I've been both ever since as I've never encountered anything to change my views.
What kind of encounter might change your views?
To believe in the supernatural I'd have to experience the supernatural. I never have. There are miracles throughout the Bible, how about one for me? Maybe a burning bush? Even a small one would do, just so it offers no natural explanation.
What do you consider miraculous? Surviving a collision with a telephone pole, or narrowly being missed by a falling tree? Maybe it's walking home from school and arriving moments before a violent storm broke or perhaps making it to the shore before the ice gave way?
What about not being burned or blinded by a firecracker exploding inside a molten burning plastic model plane, or getting home unscathed driving drunk and not remembering doing it? How about driving to and from college 7 hours each way and finding out that the radiator and front end of the car being driven were completely separated (the frame had rotted through) but didn't know it until after safely arriving home? What about losing a job; however, the money was still there to pay the mortgage and taxes and put food on the table besides? What about finding a job while wanting another, and finding out that the position really desired was at a place that would close a year later? Maybe it's remembering one's lines in a play and overcoming total stage fright to complete a memorable performance, or not engaging in a fight when the bully failed to show up! What about the woman who had every cause for divorce and yet gave it another go, or a baby being born to a couple who had been trying for years...
We really do trivialize so many things and cast them aside, and yet one could very well have missed a miracle.
Of course any of those might be supernatural but it's not obvious that it must be so and none pass the Occam's Razor test.
Well, perhaps one event might be considered "chance" by those who have on belief in GOD. The problem becomes more and more complex the more supposed "chance" events occur to say one individual. That becomes and unusual series of events.
 

LittleNipper

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On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
.

christianity, their book above quote not the religious itinerant represents circular reasoning without resolution or the definite goal the original religion of that period required for admission to the Everlasting and in fact is no different than either agnostic or atheist in regards to the conclusion of their physiological existence and the consequences of that event.
You simply missed the lesson. Ask unsaved individuals what they would say when they die and meet Jesus at the gate to heaven, as to why they should be allowed to enter in. The general response will usually be something like this: "Well, I didn't kill anyone --- I tried to do my best --- I was a good person--- I did more good things then bad things!"
The problem is these are ALL the wrong answers!!!!!!!! The only reason anyone is able to enter into heaven is because of what JESUS did and not what anyone tried to do or thought he was accomplishing ----- even if supposedly done for GOD! JESUS is the Way the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father but by me.
 

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