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Old 03-19-2008, 02:18 PM
 
Location: God's Country
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When Moses ask God who do I say sent me this what God said Exodus 3:14 "God replied I Am The One Who Always Is, just tell them I Am has sent me to you".
Revelation 22:13 "I am the Alpha and Omega, the first and last the beginning and the end".
God has no beginning or end, He has always been.

Hey JerZ, it's good to have you back on here.
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Old 03-19-2008, 02:21 PM
 
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These are really interesting answers so far, and food for thought...thanks, everybody!

I'll be reading the previous thread too, to see what people had to say, and will check in later for more replies.

Good to see you too, ILNC!
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Old 03-19-2008, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
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I, too, struggled with that question as a kid...
It led me on a LONG journey, investigating various religions, and for me, it finally made sense when I got to the 'Eastern Religions' (Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism), when I recognized that they 'conceptualize' the issue in a completely different way than Western Religions (Judaism, Islam, Christianity). BTW, yes, Islam is 'western'.

I'll keep it simple enough to say:
Western Religions: linear thinking, as in a timeline with a beginning and an ending.
Eastern Religions: circular: circles are unbroken, no beginning or end. Cycles, and expansion. Something whole to begin with.

I know that doesn't do it justice, but it was the start of my understanding, and led me to realize that I tend to view things from an Eastern perspective, much more than Western.
I see the 'silver thread' that runs through all religions, but I'm not a part of any of them, as I see Religions as "man made explanations", organized dogma that presumes to understand what cannot be understood by humans.

Anyway, the yin/yang symbol is the best example of what I'm trying to describe:
The dark part is distinct from the light part, but always in harmony to make up the whole. Also, within the dark is a piece of the light, and within the light is a piece of the dark. Both are 'pieces', and opposites, yet complete within the whole.
Both are required to visualize the whole: you cannot know light without knowing what dark is. You can't understand 'good', unless you understand 'bad', therefore both play a
distinct, critical role.
Eastern religion sees both as vital, and values 'balance' in life.
Western religion sees a battle between good and evil, where light is destined to destroy darkness.

You may think this doesn't answer the question "Where did God come from?", but it does; it just requires a very different way of thinking, and that's something I can't give you with a written explanation.
Make any sense?
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Old 03-19-2008, 03:46 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anomoly View Post
I'll keep it simple enough to say:
Western Religions: linear thinking, as in a timeline with a beginning and an ending.
Eastern Religions: circular: circles are unbroken, no beginning or end. Cycles, and expansion. Something whole to begin with.
I appreciate your answer, but I just don't see how you can avoid the paradox that there must have always been something. Saying that time is circular instead of linear I don't think explains this mystery, especially as our own perceptions of time are linear themselves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anomoly View Post
Eastern religion sees both as vital, and values 'balance' in life.
Western religion sees a battle between good and evil, where light is destined to destroy darkness.
Saying that the Western monotheistic religions are about some battle between good and evil, while having truth to it, can be a little misrepresentative. There is no ultimate evil force facing off with God, the ultimate good force--this is too dualistic. Evil is more of the corruption of what is good than a power unto itself--the Christian usually doesn't believe in absolute evil as by it's very definition doesn't exist. To have any material substance or existence, in Christianity, presupposes something good in essence as all corporeal and ethereal things are created by God. C.S. Lewis addressed this issue by saying that: we never see anything in this world that seeks evil for evil's sake (e.g. even masochists seek pain for the purpose of pleasure)--thus, there is no evidence that an absolutely evil entity exists.
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Old 03-19-2008, 03:47 PM
 
Location: Nashville, Tn
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In order for a God or anything else to have always existed that would mean that you could go back in time forever and never reach a beginning. That would also seem to suggest that we could never have arrived at the present moment because there's no end to the number of days that have already gone by. Oh, I have to go lie down.
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Old 03-19-2008, 03:49 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MontanaGuy View Post
In order for a God or anything else to have always existed that would mean that you could go back in time forever and never reach a beginning. That would also seem to suggest that we could never have arrived at the present moment because there's no end to the number of days that have already gone by. Oh, I have to go lie down.
LOL. Crazy ain't it?!
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Old 03-19-2008, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ainulinale View Post
I appreciate your answer, but I just don't see how you can avoid the paradox that there must have always been something. Saying that time is circular instead of linear I don't think explains this mystery, especially as our own perceptions of time are linear themselves.
I just mean that when I think of 'beginning', it's because a line sort of implies a 'beginning and ending', 'coming from something, going to something'.
But, how many people think "Where did that circle begin".
For me, it was a very profound 'lightbulb' moment, that gave me a sudden insight into lots of things I was stuck on. And, like I said, for me, it led to my resolution about "where God came from". Just my experience.

Saying that the Western monotheistic religions are about some battle between good and evil, while having truth to it, can be a little misrepresentative. There is no ultimate evil force facing off with God, the ultimate good force--this is too dualistic. Evil is more of the corruption of what is good than a power unto itself--the Christian usually doesn't believe in absolute evil as by it's very definition doesn't exist. To have any material substance or existence, in Christianity, presupposes something good in essence as all corporeal and ethereal things are created by God. C.S. Lewis addressed this issue by saying that: we never see anything in this world that seeks evil for evil's sake (e.g. even masochists seek pain for the purpose of pleasure)--thus, there is no evidence that an absolutely evil entity exists.
Yeah, I told you I was simplifying things that are not alway simple to define, digest or conceptualize.
But, don't you see why I say Christianity does not embrace the 'opposition' the way Eastern religions do? Even stating is a 'corruption' implies a judgment about it as a "defect", as opposed to a necessary element.
Ebb and flow would only be ebb
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Old 03-19-2008, 04:37 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anomoly View Post
Even stating is a 'corruption' implies a judgment about it as a "defect", as opposed to a necessary element.
I guess I just don't see the necessity to children dying of cancer.
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Old 03-19-2008, 05:03 PM
 
Location: Blankity-blank!
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I think god came from a black lagoon.
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Old 03-19-2008, 05:12 PM
 
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
512 posts, read 1,311,375 times
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Default Ask God

Quote:
Originally Posted by ainulinale View Post
I guess I just don't see the necessity to children dying of cancer.
Yup, that was another one I wrestled with, too. I guess my short answer to this is that, just like each post in any forum, not everything speaks to everybody. Some experiences teach us, some use us as teachers, but life always has a ripple effect that we may not notice.
I personally don't believe our life on earth is all there is, and that when we die we go to heaven.
I believe there's alot more layers, with infinite opportunities to learn lessons from Karma. I believe that's what really teaches us about compassion, eternal life, the 10 commandments. I never, for a moment, thought I had to read a book (Bible) to understand how to live!
And, every understanding I have about life, was a result of 'soul searching', and asking directly for God to reveal these things.
I've always believed in the existence of God, even when I was little, so I never had to ponder the Atheist dilemma. I trust my intuition. I just needed to understand God for myself.
One last thing I've learned is that 'spiritual understanding' cannot be conveyed by human methods of communication. My revelation was that this is a way for God to ensure he/she/it can never be replaced by religion. In other words, God communicates with us in a way that can't be simply documented for others to understand.
Therefore, ya gotta go directly to God for any real understanding.
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