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  1. #1
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    Default What is this god of which you speak?

    Rather than rehashing all the same old arguments against the existence of a god, how about those of you who believe that a god/gods exist tell us what exactly is in your head/heart/gut/arse/whatever when you think about god? This word "god" has no real semantic content for me, so when I hear people talk about god I find myself wondering about the (Fregean) sense of the word. What does "god" pick out for you? I'm not at all interested in hearing about the greatness of your god or what your god does for you. I want to know what it is. I know many of you who have a belief in a god are familiar with the arguments against its existence so, if possible, please try to avoid the jargon that you know will cause the atheists around these parts to jump on your case(s).

  2. #2
    Phoenix Incarnate Sentura's Avatar
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    etymology says the word "god" comes from ancient sanskrit and means "everything". i'm inclined to follow that belief. god is no seperate omniscient entity, god is all of us.
    i hunt INXPs for bounty
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  3. #3
    DoubleplusUngoodNonperson
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    If you make God essentially synonymous with "existence" or "universe" like some philosophers do, then there is no problem or question whatsoever, and you'll also find that a large percentage of the statements made about God still hold truth value. Its taken as fact if you interpret it that way (which is how I think of God)

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    God
    -noun
    1. Costrin.
    "All humour has a foundation of truth."
    - Costrin

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentura View Post
    etymology says the word "god" comes from ancient sanskrit and means "everything". i'm inclined to follow that belief. god is no seperate omniscient entity, god is all of us.
    Quote Originally Posted by nozflubber View Post
    If you make God essentially synonymous with "existence" or "universe" like some philosophers do, then there is no problem or question whatsoever, and you'll also find that a large percentage of the statements made about God still hold truth value. Its taken as fact if you interpret it that way (which is how I think of God)
    So why do we call it "god" in those cases? Isn't existence or everything (linguistically, and perhaps metaphysically) enough? What's the point of using/keeping the term at all if there are already terms in place that do the job? In other words, if existence is existence and everything is everything, why do we bother with "god" at all?

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    Phoenix Incarnate Sentura's Avatar
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    ^ don't mistake the individual for the general populace. i don't call anything god unless it's in reference for a discussion. it has a specific semantic connotation these days, so i just go with that.
    i hunt INXPs for bounty
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sentura View Post
    ^ don't mistake the individual for the general populace. i don't call anything god unless it's in reference for a discussion. it has a specific semantic connotation these days, so i just go with that.
    Don't assume I'm making that mistake. The point is that there's still nothing there. If god is just existence, or the sum total of everything, the term itself has no independent meaning and is, therefore, essentially useless. This is why philosophers have such an easy time making short work of these kinds of explanations.

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    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Congratulations, you've discovered Thelogical Noncognitivism, which states that discussion of God is meaningless until a common definition of God is reached.

    Whoops, too bad there's no such common definition. I try to use whatever the most popular specific semantic connotation is these days (i.e., a separate conscious entity that is omnipotent, omniscient and has a particular moral agenda he wants us to follow on pain of missing out on eternal bliss for eternal suffering, etc.) when I discuss God, because it needs a standard definition in order to discuss it meaningfully at all, but when I call myself an atheist in reference to that, I just get assaulted by a bunch of angry NFs with bizarre, borderline asinine "personal definitions of God" that are so watered down and vague that their sole purpose seems to be maintaining denial of atheism.

    I mean really, it's great if God is "the spirit of all of us and our happiness" for you or whatever warm fuzzy abstract ideal, but for all intents and purposes that's not really what people are talking about when we discuss "God" in a modern popular context.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    Congratulations, you've discovered Thelogical Noncognitivism, which states that discussion of God is meaningless until a common definition of God is reached.

    Whoops, too bad there's no such common definition. I try to use whatever the most popular specific semantic connotation is these days (i.e., a separate conscious entity that is omnipotent, omniscient and has a particular moral agenda he wants us to follow on pain of missing out on eternal bliss for eternal suffering, etc.) when I discuss God, because it needs a standard definition in order to discuss it meaningfully at all, but when I call myself an atheist in reference to that, I just get assaulted by a bunch of angry NFs with bizarre, borderline asinine "personal definitions of God" that are so watered down and vague that their sole purpose seems to be maintaining denial of atheism.

    I mean really, it's great if God is "the spirit of all of us and our happiness" for you or whatever warm fuzzy abstract ideal, but for all intents and purposes that's not really what people are talking about when we discuss "God" in a modern popular context.
    Thank you SW, I prefer ignosticism. Your point is well taken though.

    I was kind of hoping someone might give an account of what they actually believe in when they say they believe in god. I'm not all that interested in the arguments against its/his/her/their existence. I just want to hear what it is that believers believe god is. What is it that they see in their heads when they talk about god?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggernaut View Post
    Thank you SW, I prefer ignosticism.

    I was kind of hoping someone might give an account of what they actually believe in when they say they believe in god. I'm not all that interested in the arguments against its/his/her/their existence. I just want to hear what it is that believers believe god is.
    I am more agnostic than anything else. But, to me, God is a creative presence at work in the world. A force for goodness. A light in the void.
    "Create like a god, command like a king, work like a slave."

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