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  1. #11
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Well, I know enough spiritual people that believe their rationality is a gift that should be used. I guess how people define their reason and what constraints they put on it can make a lot of difference, though.

    I mean, you get someone like Soren Kierkegaard who used reason to show how there is nothing that can be perfectly known in this world and thus spawned the notion of Christian Existentialism, to someone like Josh MacDowell and others practicing conservative apologetics who use reason but a reason that is always bounded (and thus defined) by their spiritual beliefs.

    Both would even say "faith is the primary decision" here, but both came up with very different answers to what that means.

    (And you even get the popular atheists of our day who claim to have yet another handle on reason.)

    By the time you're dealing an adult religious person, they've already tagged all of their life experience under the perspective of their religious faith, and it's very very hard to get them to recast anything because it means basically deconstructing one's entire past and identity and rebuilding. So it's not just about deity being convenient or pleasurable to believe in, but also because to change a lifetime of believing in the divine means momentarily at least entering this space where nothing has form, nothing makes sense, and you no longer know who you are or what is true. Not everyone can survive that process, at least not alone.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  2. #12
    Senior Member Helios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curzon View Post
    Too good to let go and for logic to take over?

    And how could faith be forgotten? Faith is the reason why people never give up. Faith on who we are, what we do, the feeling that things would work out just fine etc are all attached to the name of God/Devine. So when god believers say that everyone need god and there is a space in our hearts that yearns for god they actually do make sense. because faith is God and we all need faith when times are rough and therefore need god to exist?

    And let us not forget time. You need to be absolutely faithful for god to listen to you. Faith takes time to develope. And time actually heals all wounds. So doesn't it not mean that God healed those woulds and took care of your problems?

    Faith has been eqauled to God throughout history so much for too long for people to see that Faith could exist without God. (now that's marketing .
    )

    Could you live without Faith?
    Of all the crap I've read on this forum, this must be the most incomprehensible. Is it too tedious for you to at least express your nonsense clearly and appealingly?

  3. #13
    Senior Member Pixelholic's Avatar
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    What I like about that paragraph is you could replace the word "faith" with any other noun and it'd be the exact same.

  4. #14
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    ...to change a lifetime of believing in the divine means momentarily at least entering this space where nothing has form, nothing makes sense, and you no longer know who you are or what is true. Not everyone can survive that process, at least not alone.
    Yes, this is the Cloud of Unknowing, not vouchsafed to everyone.

    And the Cloud of Unknowing takes you from the safety and pleasure of knowing your place to the ecstasy of unknowing where everything comes as a surprise.

    But how desirable it is. We desire it so much that after work we pay to enter an ersatz Cloud at a pounding nightclub by popping an ekstasi pill or two.

    For ersatz ecstasy is better than no ecstasy.

  5. #15
    Senior Member millerm277's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curzon View Post
    Too good to let go and for logic to take over?
    Personally, I found it to be more of a weight over my head (Raised as a Reform Jew), and the concepts Christians believe would have been even worse. So, no.

    Could you live without Faith?
    Yep. I find it feels fantastic. I also find I'm disappointed way less when I don't have faith.

    I'll explain my viewpoint further. I find, that I like that I am responsible for my own actions. If I want a million bucks, I'm not going to go and pray to god every night to give me it, I'm going to go and find my way to get it. I'm sure many people will do the same.

    The difference is that I am far more accepting of the bad in life too. Bad situations happen. Many people have trouble dealing with such things, and turn to faith to give them "hope". (This is where the "there are no atheists in foxholes" line comes in). I've learned to accept that s*** happens to the best of us, and if I'm screwed, sucks to be me....but I'm still going to try my hardest to get out of it, not sit there and see what "god" decides.

    However, if believing in god is what you like, knock yourself out, but for me, not believing feels better.
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  6. #16
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    Every belief system is based on faith. This is not something peculiar to theism. No one lives without faith in something.

    On a personal note growing up I had many of the same questions and doubts expressed by many of you. Many of the things that I was taught growing up in a conservative fundamentalist church seemed seemed to be ignorant and illogical. But, simultaneously the core of their beliefs seemed true. So for the past decade or so rather than dismiss my superficial religious beliefs I dug deeper into Christian thought... and have found most of the answers for which I was looking. There are still mysteries, but they don't trouble me.
    Take the weakest thing in you
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  7. #17
    movin melodies kiddykat's Avatar
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    I think it only feels good if the person's intentions align with their thoughts about God.

    If say.. they have persistent thoughts of distress or evil-deeds (we all know how politicians like to go to church for photo-ops), then I don't think the thought of God or the 'act' of going to a 'holy' place will do much, not especially when their thoughts are contradicting.

    In fact, it might even inflame their paranoia even more. Hence, the glass jawed ones always look so constipated in their soul-less eyes.

  8. #18
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    As faith is normally defined, you could not live without it. However, for some, "Faith" (spirituality, religion, etc. ) feels just as terrible as it feels wonderful for others. And of course, it all depends on what you invest in, and what you call it. Similar to faith, one cannot operate without doubt or caution. Both of these concepts are key notes in our psyches, and though one may be associated with the divine and other other associated with the unholy, they still are parts of us regardless.

    To me, feeling like I have common denominators between me and everyone else feels good. Knowing that I am, at the core, similar to everyone else, rids me of any notion that I am uniquely good or uniquely bad. While one should acknowledge that they are an individual, there are also barriers that are erected in the form of religions, particularly dogmatic religions such as Fundamentalism, that discourage you from either coming to grips with who you are as a person, or coming to grips with the fact that everyone is similar at the core. Instead, they give you a Jesus dopplegangar to walk with. The encouragement of a strictly literal interpretation of the Bible may hamper one from prying any deeper into the meanings of scripture, and similarly hampers one from finding personal meaning.

    Dogmatic belief systems have caused an innumerable amount of ailments for humanity because people were too unwilling to examine themselves and their real demons. Instead, they casted blame on superstitious fluff and suffer from it in return. But of course, many find comfort in security, and they find security in refusing to acknowledge the problems with their belief systems. I aim to find the opposite of security - freedom.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helios View Post
    Of all the crap I've read on this forum, this must be the most incomprehensible. Is it too tedious for you to at least express your nonsense clearly and appealingly?
    You're not skilled in communication are you?

  10. #20
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    I dont think faith and reason are incompatible, I dont think that belief in God cancels personal responsibility either, nor do I think that theism is challenged by shit happening or evil, God's not the author of those things and, to be honest, God owes us nothing.

    Faith exists in a lot of forms, you need to have faith in untested people or food, for instance, everyday or you'd never be able to make short journeys to work, the shop or eat. However I think we're talking about spirituality, I think its unrivalled, much of the kind of uplifting experience that most professing athiests have talked to me about arent that attractive and are often a twisted mirror image of the sorts of evangelism which they reject and probably led to their rejecting spiritual faith in the first place.

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