An argument for God's existence

For intuitive and critical discussions, from spirituality to theological doctrines. Fair warning: because the subject matter is personal, moderation is strict.

Moderator: Dan~

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby Ecmandu » Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:50 pm

There’s no mystery here, on my part.

Our lives are totally and completely meaningless as currently constructed.

I would not be able to make this claim if I didn’t know exactly how to make existence perfect and infinitely better.

This, what we’re in... is total crap and bullshit.

I now know enough to know that. My suicidal rage was because I didn’t know shit. Now... I know ...

Enough to keep me going. Once you know what I know, there’s no turning back...

This life as currently constructed is simple as fuck:

When you win and someone loses, you are sent to hell

When you lose, you are in hell

I solved this fucking problem.

Don’t fucking come to me about the mystery... what a load of crap
Ecmandu
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 11544
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 1:22 am

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:07 pm

phyllo wrote: God created diseases, death, natural disasters, extinctions events. Who here is arguing that He didn't?



That's not my point. My point is [first of all] why should the No God folks believe in the existence of any God, let alone a particular God embraced by a particular denomination. Hundreds of them...East and West.


phyllo wrote:Since those things have nothing to do with whether a god exists or not, I fail to see why you and your buddy bring it up.


Note to others:

A little help with this one please. For example, what in the hell is he talking about?!

My point has always revolved around the extent to which arguments for God's existence are able to be configured into actual demonstrable proof that a God, the God, my God does in fact exist.

After all, only after it is established that God does in fact exist, does it make any realistic, "for all practical purposes" sense to go on to theodicy.

Here, however, I'm basically saying, "okay, let's just assume that your God does exist. Why then is the world the way it is given the manner in which so many believers describe God as omniscient, omnipotent, loving, just, merciful."

And while no one here may be asking me to worship and adore their own God, any number of religionists that I've encountered over the years have been adamant regarding my fate if I do not worship and adore their own God.

I'm just trying to bring this all down to Earth given my own understanding of how we acquire beliefs like this.

Yes, of course! If this actually works for you and you are able to believe it, great!! You remain comforted and consoled despite acknowledging all of the truly ghastly things that your loving just and merciful God permits...things that if mere mortals attempted them they would burn in Hell for all of eternity.

But, in my view, it is certainly not inherently unreasonable for those like me to point out just how truly bizarre or unconscionable this might seem to be.


phyllo wrote:That's you projecting your ideas about God onto me. As you do with others.


No, I'm trying to grapple with how individuals come to believe what they do given the arguments I make in regard to these relationships in my signature threads. How do each of us as individuals not come to project onto the world and into others the manner in which our own thinking and feeling is rooted in the arguments I make.

We all come into the world hardwired to embody all manner of "psychological defense mechanisms". But why mine in particular and yours in particular? How are the actual instances of this not profoundly rooted in the points I make about human identity in the is/ought world.

Clearly, to the extent the ego is defended by God it can become impervious to the arguments that I make.

As for my ideas about God, and what interest me about religion, that's why I created this thread: https://www.ilovephilosophy.com/viewtop ... 5&t=186929

Morality here and now, immortality there and then: described and encompassed existentially.

phyllo wrote: You have a one-dimensional stereotype of God, theists and the religious. That's the basis of your arguments.


Okay, note examples from this thread [or elsewhere] of multi-dimensional assessments of God, theists and the religious. Given a particular set of circumstances whereby actual behaviors are chosen given one's belief in God and one's understanding of the fate of "I" on the other side of the grave.

Or, as I suspect, do dimensions here basically revolve around agreeing or disagreeing with what others profess to believe about God and religion.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby felix dakat » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:30 pm

iambiguous wrote:
felix dakat wrote:
That's an obtuse redundancy.


I truly dare you you to provide us with a context relating to the existence of God that explains what you mean by this.


That's clueless idiocy.
The purpose of my life would seem to be to express the truth as I discover it, but in such a manner that it is completely devoid of authority. By having no authority, by being seen by all as utterly unreliable, I express the truth and put everyone in a contradictory position where they can only save themselves by making the truth their own.
Soren Kierkegaard– Journals, 432
User avatar
felix dakat
Janitor
 
Posts: 9086
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2006 7:20 am
Location: east of eden

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:36 pm

Moe wrote:
iambiguous wrote:
Moe wrote:
That's an obtuse redundancy.


I truly dare you you to provide us with a context relating to the existence of God that explains what you mean by this.


That's clueless idiocy.


Moe! Welcome back!! God loves you!!!
[one of them]
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby felix dakat » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:40 pm

phyllo wrote:
phyllo wrote:
God created diseases, death, natural disasters, extinctions events. Who here is arguing that He didn't?



That's not my point. My point is [first of all] why should the No God folks believe in the existence of any God, let alone a particular God embraced by a particular denomination. Hundreds of them...East and West.
Since those things have nothing to do with whether a god exists or not, I fail to see why you and your buddy bring it up.
And if I am being asked to worship and adore their own God, how is it not reasonable to ask why this God would allow the sort of terrible, terrible things we see all around us merely in following the news from day to day to day?
Nobody here is asking you to worship or adore anything.
phyllo wrote:
Theists/religious people don't know the reasons for these things which they express as "God's mysterious ways". Who here is saying otherwise?

Theists/religious people either think that He has provided sufficient clarity or don't know why He doesn't reveal Himself more clearly. Anybody disagree here?

Yes, of course! If this actually works for you and you are able to believe it, great!! You remain comforted and consoled despite acknowledging all of the truly ghastly things that your loving just and merciful God permits...things that if mere mortals attempted them they would burn in Hell for all of eternity.

But, in my view, it is certainly not inherently unreasonable for those like me to point out just how truly bizarre or unconscionable this might seem to be.
That's you projecting your ideas about God onto me. As you do with others.

I didn't say that God is loving, merciful, nor did I say anything about Hell or eternity.
Yes, but the folks that sustain them [with or without the best of intentions] are not omniscient and omnipotent. And many of us see them as anything but "loving just and merciful".
More projecting.

I didn't say that God is omniscient or omnipotent.

You have a one-dimensional stereotype of God, theists and the religious. That's the basis of your arguments.


Although Iambiguous has picked up some of the terminology of existential phenomenonology like dasein, I don't see him stepping outside of a natural perspective. And within that perspective his view on religion is strictly and rigidly a narrow evangelical fundamentalist one about which he is justifiably skeptical.
Last edited by felix dakat on Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The purpose of my life would seem to be to express the truth as I discover it, but in such a manner that it is completely devoid of authority. By having no authority, by being seen by all as utterly unreliable, I express the truth and put everyone in a contradictory position where they can only save themselves by making the truth their own.
Soren Kierkegaard– Journals, 432
User avatar
felix dakat
Janitor
 
Posts: 9086
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2006 7:20 am
Location: east of eden

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby phyllo » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:41 pm

Here, however, I'm basically saying, "okay, let's just assume that your God does exist. Why then is the world the way it is given the manner in which so many believers describe God as omniscient, omnipotent, loving, just, merciful."
I answered that here :
phyllo wrote:
Theists/religious people don't know the reasons for these things which they express as "God's mysterious ways". Who here is saying otherwise?

To which you replied with this:
Yes, of course! If this actually works for you and you are able to believe it, great!! You remain comforted and consoled despite acknowledging all of the truly ghastly things that your loving just and merciful God permits...things that if mere mortals attempted them they would burn in Hell for all of eternity.

But, in my view, it is certainly not inherently unreasonable for those like me to point out just how truly bizarre or unconscionable this might seem to be.
As if I'm comforted and consoled in this situation. #-o

Comforted and consoled by what???

And I didn't attribute 'loving' and and 'merciful' characteristics to God. Nor did I claim that anyone would or ought to "burn in Hell for all eternity".

Why are you talking about "my God" when you have no clue about what that means to me?

These are fantasies in your head.
Okay, note examples from this thread [or elsewhere] of multi-dimensional assessments of God, theists and the religious.

Bob, Felix, Ierrellus, KT ... all have multi-dimensional unique assessments.
phyllo
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 12248
Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:41 am

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jan 31, 2021 9:11 pm

felix dakat wrote:Although Iambiguous has picked up some of the terminology of existential phenomenonology like dasein, I don't see him stepping outside of a natural perspective. And within that perspective his view on religion is strictly and rigidly a narrow evangelical fundamentalist one about which he is justifiably skeptical.


In regard to your own argument for the existence of God, what on earth are you attempting to communicate to us here about me?

We'll need a context of course.

Or, as I suspect, does that in and of itself end the discussion?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jan 31, 2021 9:47 pm

phyllo wrote:
Here, however, I'm basically saying, "okay, let's just assume that your God does exist. Why then is the world the way it is given the manner in which so many believers describe God as omniscient, omnipotent, loving, just, merciful."
I answered that here :
phyllo wrote:
Theists/religious people don't know the reasons for these things which they express as "God's mysterious ways". Who here is saying otherwise?

To which you replied with this:
Yes, of course! If this actually works for you and you are able to believe it, great!! You remain comforted and consoled despite acknowledging all of the truly ghastly things that your loving just and merciful God permits...things that if mere mortals attempted them they would burn in Hell for all of eternity.

But, in my view, it is certainly not inherently unreasonable for those like me to point out just how truly bizarre or unconscionable this might seem to be.
As if I'm comforted and consoled in this situation. #-o

Comforted and consoled by what???


Yep, that's where we are stuck. And, sure, to the extent that someone either is or is not comforted in sweeping natural disasters, extinction events and all the countless afflictions God dumped on us under the "God works in mysterious ways" rug, well, that part is still rooted in dasein from my point of view.

phyllo wrote: And I didn't attribute 'loving' and and 'merciful' characteristics to God. Nor did I claim that anyone would or ought to "burn in Hell for all eternity".

Why are you talking about "my God" when you have no clue about what that means to me?


Huh? Above you noted you have already discussed all of this with me. And that you refuse to again. That's why I asked others [if they do recall what you said] to bring it to my attention. What is your "here and now" understanding of God as it impacts the behaviors you choose on this side of the grave...as that impacts your current assumptions regarding "I" on the other side of it.

And how do you go about reconfiguring your argument about God's existence into that which, to the best of your ability, amounts to a demonstration of His existence.

Finally, are you yourself content with sweeping all the terrible things that God brings to us here on Earth under the mysterious ways rug?

Okay, note examples from this thread [or elsewhere] of multi-dimensional assessments of God, theists and the religious.

phyllo wrote: Bob, Felix, Ierrellus, KT ... all have multi-dimensional unique assessments.


Note to Bob, Felix, Ierrellus and karpel tunnel...

What is he proposing here? Cite examples from your own posts that you feel demonstrates your own approach to God's existence is "multi-dimensional". How are your arguments more unique than mine? In fact, my own arguments rooted in the points I make in my signature threads are like none other that I have ever come across over the years.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby phyllo » Sun Jan 31, 2021 11:01 pm

Finally, are you yourself content with sweeping all the terrible things that God brings to us here on Earth under the mysterious ways rug?
If I don't know why these things are happening and I don't have control over them, then what kind "sweeping under the rug" do you imagine that I'm doing.

What do you think I should be doing? Asking about this on the internet? Crying in the shower? What?

Epictetus wrote: "Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens. Some things are up to us and some things are not up to us.

"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference."

How are your arguments more unique than mine? In fact, my own arguments rooted in the points I make in my signature threads are like none other that I have ever come across over the years.

Felix wrote :
Although Iambiguous has picked up some of the terminology of existential phenomenonology like dasein, I don't see him stepping outside of a natural perspective. And within that perspective his view on religion is strictly and rigidly a narrow evangelical fundamentalist one about which he is justifiably skeptical.

Think about that.
phyllo
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 12248
Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:41 am

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby Bob » Mon Feb 01, 2021 8:20 am

iambiguous wrote:Note to Bob, Felix, Ierrellus and karpel tunnel...

What is he proposing here? Cite examples from your own posts that you feel demonstrates your own approach to God's existence is "multi-dimensional". How are your arguments more unique than mine? In fact, my own arguments rooted in the points I make in my signature threads are like none other that I have ever come across over the years.

This is a quote from one of John Vervaeke’s videos:
Now these are the three things that religions traditionally provided for people:
1) religious worldview - they gave you a narrative, here's the story and here's how you belong to it. They gave you a worldview that makes sense of things.
2) practices and
3) communities and institutions whereby you could self-transcend.
What we really want are the things that contribute to meaning in life, okay, self-transcendence. This is a big thing, people matter. People need to believe with good reason that they are connected to something larger than themselves, that they matter to something that has a value beyond their ego. A perspective that's very predictive of having enhanced meaning in life. They need things to make sense, they need a sense of coherence and then finally they need a sense of something it's called purpose or direction. They need that narrative orientation and so those three orders address three of the most primary things and meaning in life is a real thing. If you don't have meaning in life, that's predictive of suicide depression, anxiety etc.

This shows us that the Christian narrative is the Bible, the church provides the communities and institutions where practises are available. Community cannot be stressed enough, because all the alternatives (especially in our modern world) take us out of community, and we either rot away alone or behind some avatar in some computer game or discussion forum.

The message of religion is between the lines. It is the inspiration that we cannot locate. It is the dream, the vision and intuition. It is heard in silence, in solitude but also suddenly in the middle of a crowd. But it is real and has real implications. It just isn’t something we can demand, but something we have to ask for. If we don’t ask, don’t knock humbly at the door, it is gone. It is the city on the hill and the light in the darkness. It is the destination of a journey, which we must undertake spiritually.

Yes, it is in words. No, it isn’t only words, but meaning and wisdom. Living in honour of these things can help us forward. Humility is the mindset by which we best fare.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
User avatar
Bob
Philosopher
 
Posts: 3551
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2003 6:20 pm
Location: Germany

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Mon Feb 01, 2021 8:02 pm

phyllo wrote:
Finally, are you yourself content with sweeping all the terrible things that God brings to us here on Earth under the mysterious ways rug?
If I don't know why these things are happening and I don't have control over them, then what kind "sweeping under the rug" do you imagine that I'm doing.

What do you think I should be doing? Asking about this on the internet? Crying in the shower? What?


We all react to to this as individuals predisposed by our life experiences to think and to feel this or to think and to feel that.

And, to the best of my knowledge, no one has yet come up with an explanation that can be construed as "the best one".

And, yes, internet forums like this exist precisely in order to explore our own individual reactions. For some, the terrible things that an alleged loving, just and merciful God dumps on us day in and day out is more or less readily subsumed in His mysterious ways. Others, like you, simply don't know why. Then there are those like me, unable to believe in God, who are confronted with the grim assumption that human pain and suffering is all merely part and parcel of the brute facticity that encompasses our essentially meaningless existence.

And that we've still got oblivion to contend with.

phyllo wrote: Epictetus wrote: "Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens. Some things are up to us and some things are not up to us.

"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference."


Of course! If you are able to think yourself into believing things of this sort and it works to [more or less] comfort and console you, I can only envy you.

And maybe, just maybe, you might be able to yank me up closer to thinking like that myself before I yank you down closer into thinking about it as I do.

Or, instead, we can just move on to others.

How are your arguments more unique than mine? In fact, my own arguments rooted in the points I make in my signature threads are like none other that I have ever come across over the years.

phyllo wrote: Felix wrote :
Although Iambiguous has picked up some of the terminology of existential phenomenonology like dasein, I don't see him stepping outside of a natural perspective. And within that perspective his view on religion is strictly and rigidly a narrow evangelical fundamentalist one about which he is justifiably skeptical.

Think about that.


I did. And I responded to his point above:

In regard to your own argument for the existence of God, what on earth are you attempting to communicate to us here about me?

We'll need a context of course.

Or, as I suspect, does that in and of itself end the discussion?


Nothing from him so far.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby Bob » Tue Feb 02, 2021 10:31 am

iambiguous wrote:We all react to to this as individuals predisposed by our life experiences to think and to feel this or to think and to feel that.

And, to the best of my knowledge, no one has yet come up with an explanation that can be construed as "the best one".

And, yes, internet forums like this exist precisely in order to explore our own individual reactions. For some, the terrible things that an alleged loving, just and merciful God dumps on us day in and day out is more or less readily subsumed in His mysterious ways. Others, like you, simply don't know why. Then there are those like me, unable to believe in God, who are confronted with the grim assumption that human pain and suffering is all merely part and parcel of the brute facticity that encompasses our essentially meaningless existence.

And that we've still got oblivion to contend with.

Bearing in mind that this topic has the title “An argument for God’s existence” and not “The argument for God’s existence” (well done Fanman), there have been numerous arguments posited and they show up the fact that their can be only suggestions from the varying cultures and traditions. The fact that no-one has provided you with what you consider “the best one” is not anyone’s fault.

I find the fact that mankind has found diverse possibilities to portray the divine fitting, because there is no perfect argument. There are only fingers pointing at where they see evidence for the divine. Even the non-theistic Buddha saw that there was a way out of suffering, which suggests that this way was there from the beginning.

If you are unable to believe in God, or in the eightfold path, or whatever other ways to cope with suffering there are, then of course you have a problem. Mankind has in the past, told stories, written down myths, developed spiritual practices and, in times incomparably worse than ours, learned to cope. At least there wasn’t mass suicide as an answer to the suffering that was always present.

Oblivion shouldn’t be a problem, if you are unable to believe in God. It is just oblivion. It is a problem if you just say that you are unable to believe in God but hold on to a doubt, a chance that their may be a God after all. In this, as Felix says, you are struggling with an evangelical wrathful God. I think that the Gospel message tells us that love is the answer, the light in the darkness.

If that isn’t enough, stop putting the onus on others to convince you. It’s down to you, alone.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
User avatar
Bob
Philosopher
 
Posts: 3551
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2003 6:20 pm
Location: Germany

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby Otto » Tue Feb 02, 2021 5:24 pm

Fanman wrote:Introduction
The fact that we cannot prove or disprove God’s existence empirically or otherwise, could be because we are not supposed to. Since it would not be congruent with his New Covenant. If the faculty of choice were removed by demonstrating God’s or Jesus Christ’s existence and there was evidence of his miracles, the New Covenant would be void. The New Covenant expressly states, “anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life (John 3:36 NLT)”, which is the core tenet. The nature of proof is that it removes the requirement for belief, therefore why would God void his own New Covenant by allowing us to prove his existence empirically or otherwise. That would cause belief in Jesus Christ to be unnecessary and would result in God contradicting himself.

If we could really prove God, then belief in Him would no longer be belief, but knowledge, so that belief would have become obsolete, belief in God would no longer be necessary.

Fanman wrote:Discussion
On this basis, which seems logical, it can be reasonably argued that God will not allow his existence to be demonstrated nor refuted, empirically or otherwise, which is why his existence cannot be proved nor disproved. He is honouring the choice that the New Covenant presents, which is a characteristic of God that can be recognized in the Bible, viz Christ’s sacrifice for the lives of people. Given the consensus is that God’s existence cannot should not (see your introduction) be proved or disproved. It is necessary for God’s plan of salvation, that the New Covenant remains valid. Necessity implies agency. I do not believe that chance or coincidence could constitute a valid refutation because there is to my perception, no remit for chance or coincidence within my argument. Therefore, his agency would seem to be the only logical answer. Thus, I propose that God’s existence cannot be proved or disproved, because he wants the choice of belief in Jesus Christ to remain.

We are not allowed and supposed to prove or disprove His existence empirically or otherwise, as you have said in your introduction.

Fanman wrote:Conclusion
This would demonstrate that God upholds his New Covenant. Which is congruent with the way that he is portrayed in the Bible. Thus, I believe I have established that there is a valid reason for God not allowing us to prove or disprove his existence. That he is justified in doing so for the retention of choice and belief in Jesus Christ. He also has a cause for doing so; he wants people to believe in Jesus Christ. So it seems there are the grounds of validity, justification and cause supporting my argument. Therefore, I believe that my argument is logical. In conclusion, although is it inconsistent with what I have argued in terms of his existence not being able to be proved or disproved, if God did not want us to do something, in this case, prove or disprove his existence, it would follow that because of his prevention, his existence would be demonstrated.

What about the other believers in God or gods?

And what about the Godwannabes, who don't allow us to prove or disprove their existence either? :)
User avatar
Otto
 
Posts: 60
Joined: Sat Jan 23, 2021 8:53 pm

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby Fanman » Tue Feb 02, 2021 6:32 pm

Hi Otto,

What about the other believers in God or gods?


I haven’t got a clue. I am only familiar with the Christian God. I can’t speak knowingly about other religions, doctrines and scriptures.

And what about the Godwannabes, who don't allow us to prove or disprove their existence either? :)


I mean, we can’t apply my lines of argumentation to every purported God there is, as that wouldn’t make sense. I suppose we have to look at it the sense of the God that we can most realise in terms of logic, that concords most with the reality we experience, is the one that could exist.

I’m reaching here. I am also thinking in a monotheistic sense.
Fanman
 
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun Feb 18, 2018 11:47 am

Re: An argument for God's existence

Postby iambiguous » Wed Feb 03, 2021 6:19 pm

Bob wrote:
iambiguous wrote:We all react to to this as individuals predisposed by our life experiences to think and to feel this or to think and to feel that.

And, to the best of my knowledge, no one has yet come up with an explanation that can be construed as "the best one".

And, yes, internet forums like this exist precisely in order to explore our own individual reactions. For some, the terrible things that an alleged loving, just and merciful God dumps on us day in and day out is more or less readily subsumed in His mysterious ways. Others, like you, simply don't know why. Then there are those like me, unable to believe in God, who are confronted with the grim assumption that human pain and suffering is all merely part and parcel of the brute facticity that encompasses our essentially meaningless existence.

And that we've still got oblivion to contend with.

Bearing in mind that this topic has the title “An argument for God’s existence” and not “The argument for God’s existence” (well done Fanman), there have been numerous arguments posited and they show up the fact that their can be only suggestions from the varying cultures and traditions. The fact that no-one has provided you with what you consider “the best one” is not anyone’s fault.


Like I am actually blaming others here for failing me. And I have always made it clear that there is no possibility that I am able to demonstrate that any of the arguments here of others are wrong. Let alone that only my own is right.

I can only ask those who make an argument to bring that argument out into the world that we live in and address the points that I make above. And, to the best of their ability, at least make an attempt to note how they might go about demonstrating that what they believe "in their head" about God and religion is in fact demonstrable at all. Or is the argument just an expression of their own more or less blind "leap of faith".

And Kierkegaard's own leap along with Pascal's wager works for me if it works for others. I just can no longer think myself into going there.

Finally, I feel it is important to point out this: that what we believe about all of this can become rooted more in what we want to believe is true because it comforts and consoles us. At least before it reaches the point where [for some] they come to insist that others are obligated to believe it too. Or else.

Clearly, you have come to think what you do "here and now". But if I am ever going to be able to go more in that direction myself it becomes important for those who are there now to respond to the points I make above. Why? Because until they are addressed more substantively it is very unlikely that I will be able to yank myself up out of the philosophical/existential hole that "I" am in "here and now".

Instead, you sustain your end of the discussion in what I construe to be a general description spiritual account:

Bob wrote: I find the fact that mankind has found diverse possibilities to portray the divine fitting, because there is no perfect argument. There are only fingers pointing at where they see evidence for the divine. Even the non-theistic Buddha saw that there was a way out of suffering, which suggests that this way was there from the beginning.

If you are unable to believe in God, or in the eightfold path, or whatever other ways to cope with suffering there are, then of course you have a problem. Mankind has in the past, told stories, written down myths, developed spiritual practices and, in times incomparably worse than ours, learned to cope. At least there wasn’t mass suicide as an answer to the suffering that was always present.


In this respect, we are in two different discussions here. My end of it no better than yours but considerably more inclined to bring God and religion out into the world that we live in. One in which there are any number of religious paths in stark contrast [and in conflict] in regard to both morality here and now and immortality there and then.

And with all of this at stake, why would not a truly existing God point the way with, well, a more definitive clarity?

As for this...

Bob wrote: Oblivion shouldn’t be a problem, if you are unable to believe in God. It is just oblivion. It is a problem if you just say that you are unable to believe in God but hold on to a doubt, a chance that their may be a God after all. In this, as Felix says, you are struggling with an evangelical wrathful God. I think that the Gospel message tells us that love is the answer, the light in the darkness.


...the gap [here and now] is probably beyond closing.

"It is just oblivion"?!!

Sure, that's easy for the religionists to say. Why? Because "here and now" they are able to convince themselves that, on the contrary, it is not oblivion at all. It is a Divine immortality and salvation. Paradise for all the rest of eternity!

At least throughout most of the Western hemisphere.

As for folks like me, oblivion encompasses the loss of all of the things that we love and cherish about being alive on this side of the grave. Why on earth do you suppose so many people are terrified of dying? It's just a coincidence?

Instead, for those like me, we can only "hope" that someday the pain and suffering in our lives becomes so unbearable that oblivion is at least an option available to us to take it all away.

Bob wrote: If that isn’t enough, stop putting the onus on others to convince you. It’s down to you, alone.


No, again, that's your "take" on me. The onus is always on me. But others -- the religious folks -- are either more or less successful in convincing me that my own frame of mind is actually less reasonable than theirs.

Being the polemicist here is just a way in which to provoke them to dig deeper. And, as I noted above, this part:

And, no doubt, I'm taken back to the time when it comforted and consoled me too. And, in having lost that, my reaction to those who are still somehow manage to sustain it in this world brings out a bit of rancor in me.


As well [as always] this:

He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
User avatar
iambiguous
ILP Legend
 
Posts: 40366
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:03 pm
Location: baltimore maryland

Previous

Return to Religion and Spirituality



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot]