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Thread: Agnosticism

  1. #31
    Senior Member Cerpin_Taxt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FineLine View Post
    Thanks! But it's probably more about my generation and upbringing than any merit on my part. I don't tend to swim against the tide.



    Amen!

    I used to follow politics closely, but nowadays I just tune it out.

    Some of my acquaintances say they could never marry or even live with someone who has different political beliefs than them. That just seems counter-intuitive to me. How crazy are you when you reach the point where you let politics get in the way of sex?

    FL
    That reminds me of that 'Curb your enthusism' episode -- . Anybody seen it?

    Atheists among conventional people tend to be rare, those are the ones who were likely raised under the tyranny of religious indoctrination. Those who were raised in atheist households where generally shift to agnosticism later on, as they see no reason to dogmatically cling to atheism.

    As again, we see that people hold a particular position mostly based on the factors in their personal experience/current social life. They tend not to be interested in philosophy of religion and only hold an opinion on matters such as these for the sake of connecting with those who affirm their values.
    This is very much my situation. I was raised in an atheist/agnostic household, any question's regarding god or anything of that nature were usually scoffed at instantly -- actually pretty much any intellectual matter was treated as such.

    It didn't help that my parent's are both SJ's -- I often got the "dont talk about anything weird honey, your frightening people" response -- so there was alot of misinterpratation.

    I just assume that I'm doomed -- or blessed -- to a life a metaphysical pondering.
    One by one, over the months, the other bulbs burn out, and are gone. The first few of these hit Byron hard. He's still a new arrival, still hasn't accepted his immortality. But on through the burning hours he starts to learn about the transience of others: learns that loving them while they're here becomes easier, and also more intense—to love as if each design-hour will be the last.

    Thomas Pynchon - Gravity's Rainbow

    I can't go on, I'll go on.

    Samuel Beckett - The Unnamable

  2. #32
    Senior Member Eileen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Intellectually agnostic. My guts believe in God but my guts have been wrong before.


    holla. (you know, Ivy, I spend a lot of weekends in Durham now... perhaps I should come and check out your church.)
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    "I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality." -Martin Luther King, Jr.

  3. #33
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    I've ended up as an agnostic type that tends to agree more with atheists. The main reason has been that I don't see any need to have a strong opinion on something I can't know for sure.

    I also am unlikely to join religions thanks to a built up worldview where people in power of any sort have to be watched, and can't be trusted fully on their own, and a lot of how several religions view their god/gods fits the view of the type of authority that is inconsistent in applying it's rules, rules based on momentary emotions, and demands a lot of ass kissing, which is the sort of person I already have a problem with in humans.

  4. #34
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    My polemic is not against theism in general, but only anthropomorphic theism that purports to be tenable on epistemic grounds. I think that a belief in God can only be justified through radical fideism, as the notion of God can only be accepted through testimony. As for instance, we can prove that there was a world-wide flood, and there was a Noah's ark, but we can't prove that it was God that caused it. We can 'prove' that somebody receives inner strenghth to do a miracle after praying, but we can't prove that God is the source of it, because we don't see God, we only see the way God manifests himself (granted, for the sake of the argument that He exists.) Also, God can not have any human traits because He is infinite, and our minds can only imagine what is finite because we are confined to our senses. There is nothing in the mind that was not once inspired by a sensation. Surely we can imagine something that we have never seen before, but the origin of this idea is of something that we have seen, heard, touched, smelled or tasted.
    A tangent, sort of: Thank you for including this last paragraph, it does a lot to clarify the points you're trying to make and makes the thoughts more accessible to the average reader.

    It's similar to the discussion over scriptural authenticity we were having elsewhere: Even if it's proven that a religious text has been transcribed accurately over the centuries, it still says nothing about whether the content itself is actually factual.

    What do you mean by God not having any "human" traits? Is there any point of empathy between God and man at all? is it possible that man's traits a watered-down version of God's traits? Is there any use for a god that has nothing in common with his creation? can an artist create any work of art that is not whatsoever derived at least in SOME part from his being? etc...
    "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

  5. #35
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    No, an artist can't make anything like God. Because again, whatever an artist has in his imagination was inspired by something that he once had in his senses.

    God could not have been in his senses because God is infinite. Basically, a theist could receive great gratification from prayer, yet the feeling he experiences could be experienced by an atheist in other activities. I think that there is this infinite God, but the way we experience him is filtered through our Earthly perceptions.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

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  6. #36
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    No, an artist can't make anything like God. Because again, whatever an artist has in his imagination was inspired by something that he once had in his senses. God could not have been in his senses because God is infinite.
    God doesn't sense things or at least understand "his creations" sensations, as a subset of his own? Could you clarify this please?
    "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

  7. #37
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    God is Infinite, therefore everything that exists is part of him.

    Yet, in our observations, we could say that there are many things that are finite. In fact, I am at a loss to come up with something that is infinite...

    How could this be...?

    The world that we experience is not the real world..it is posited by our finite imaginations. Hence, God is inexperiencable to our crude bodies, so we translate the way we see him into what we can fathom. And this be the physical world. God does not have senses because he is immaterial. Yet we cannot fathom anything that is not at least inspired by our senses because senses are fundamental to our way of perceiving the world...Do away with the senses--do away with everything that is..
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

    “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”---Samuel Johnson

    My blog: www.randommeanderings123.blogspot.com/

  8. #38
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eileen View Post


    holla. (you know, Ivy, I spend a lot of weekends in Durham now... perhaps I should come and check out your church.)
    That would be crunk. Come on down!
    The one who buggers a fire burns his penis
    -anonymous graffiti in the basilica at Pompeii

  9. #39
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    God is Infinite, therefore everything that exists is part of him. Yet, in our observations, we could say that there are many things that are finite. In fact, I am at a loss to come up with something that is infinite... How could this be...?

    The world that we experience is not the real world..it is posited by our finite imaginations. Hence, God is inexperiencable to our crude bodies, so we translate the way we see him into what we can fathom. And this be the physical world.
    This is where I am a little unsure of whether you're correct. You are dividing the question into black and white, material and immaterial, real and not real. What if the finite world is just a subset of the world you choose to call "infinite"? (I'm not even sure if infinite is the right word to describe it.)

    So when you're floating on the deck of a boat on a black glassy sea and a whale's fluke pops above the waves, you can say that you "saw" the whale. You can't see all the whale because it won't surface completely, but you saw PART of the whale in truth... and you can try to conjecture what the rest of the whale looks like, although you'll never really know for sure because you aren't in the whale's domain.

    This isn't exactly right as an example, because "God" would be part of EVERY domain, not just confined to the ocean; but if the tangible world is just a subset of all that exists, wouldn't it be possible for something from the larger set to intrude momentarily on the tangible world?

    I think our conflict here is that I am positing that the tangible world is a subset of "all reality," where you seem to have "all reality" broken into an observable world (finite) and an unobservable world (infinite).
    "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

  10. #40
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    No, an artist can't make anything like God. Because again, whatever an artist has in his imagination was inspired by something that he once had in his senses.
    My references to that were not intended as you mean here. The only correlation I was exploring is that part of the brain that can process 'truths', pursue types of knowledge without nailing everything down into observable fact. It has more to do with the human end of perceiving the Infinite, rather than defining the Infinite in any way. Does that make sense?
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

    I want to be just like my mother, even if she is bat-shit crazy.

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