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Old 05-23-2019, 11:06 AM
 
4,204 posts, read 2,568,470 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of the Nonsense View Post
I doubt that anyone here really expected to change your mind. But before you go you really should make an effort to understand the point of view of non believers.

Your "faith" in God rests, at least in large part, on the firm conviction that you have a deep personal relationship with your deity. He has touched you. You have felt His presence. But you see, this perceived experience of religious ecstasy that is a part of the religious experience of being touched by, or being one with God, is not restricted to Christians. As I earlier pointed out, every devoutly religious person feels that, without question, they have a personal relationship with their chosen deity. The obvious question then becomes, is it reasonable to suppose that all of these billions of devoted believers actually have a personal relationship with an actual deity? Or are the vast majority, at least, simply deluding themselves by emotionally subscribing to a type of make believe that is in fact only in their head?.

Here is an example. Sufi's are a sect within Islam that believe that they can experience a personal physical relationship with God through dance, song and prayer. They bring themselves into a trancelike state... and the "presence of Allah" fills them with ecstasy.

This video is five minutes long. I urge you to watch it to the end, because it explains so much.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nd41...2iO9g-_CTSvdkS...

Now, consider what the narrator said. "The path to true ecstasy begins by earnestly seeking ecstasy, which requires the rebuking of one's ego. Attaining that ecstasy requires drowning of the ego. Without doubt, true ecstasy is a blessed elusive state. It is indeed closeness to God." "Although it is a fascinating state, those who give themselves to it entirely become unbalanced, for too much of anything can be self-destructive." "Yet in time the aspirant realizes that this wonderful ecstasy is ultimately a form of intoxication." Understanding this is the key to the whole experience of being "touched by God."

Next, consider some examples of Christians who believe that they have personally been "touched by God."

First there is the example of "the gift of tongues."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K08OKQJIwYw

Next, there is allowing oneself to be overcome by the depths of one's religious fervor.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMDCWnclzKs


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-Sf4V1NQVg

Personally, I think the last girl deserves a cigarette.

The point I am attempting to make, of course, is that people can and do manage to convince themselves that they experiencing the presence of God, what the Sufi's refer to as "ecstasy," which is in fact entirely SELF INDUCED, because it causes them to feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Or as the narrator of the Sufi video put it,"in time the aspirant realizes that this wonderful ecstasy is ultimately a form of intoxication."

It's a state of self induced emotional bliss.

So... what does atheism have to offer that compares to such deeply felt emotional experiences?

Nothing! Nothing at all. Atheists are not salesmen oftering a better deal on a different product. Atheism is simply the lack of belief in the physical spiritual reality of such self induced emotional manifestations. If the overwhelming majority (at LEAST!) of beliefs involve deities that never existed to begin with, then the feeling of "ecstacy" that accompanies the various experiences of the various religious religions is nothing more than an individual working themselves into self induced emotional state. IT'S A DELUSION! Because you see, it's entirely derived from make believe. And make believe, by its very nature, is a path to self delusion. As is faith based on an individual's lifetime of religious indoctrination. Just because a person happened to be born in a Christian dominated society. Or a Muslim dominated society. Or a Hindu dominated society. And so on.

Atheism DOES offer a potential path to discovering just what the actual truth might be however, by discarding the ancient superstitious assumptions of our ancient superstitious ancestors and seeking to accept at face value what the universe has to tell us through experimentation and careful observation. It's called the "empirical method" of attaining knowledge. The empirical scientific method is responsible for all of our current working electronic technology. Scientific inquiry is not designed to create warm and fuzzy feelings, I am afraid. Except, perhaps, the joy of discovery.

If one happens to be interested in that sort of thing, of course. Because understanding science takes effort. It's much easier to simply conclude that "God did it, I believe (have faith) it, and that settles it."
None belief is self-explanatory... it's the evangelizing non-believers the poster was probably trying to get a better feel for, but it's simply a means to an end.
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Old 05-23-2019, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Valencia, Spain
15,189 posts, read 10,269,834 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabfest View Post
No I do not. By a certain age, you should have realized long ago everyone is different. Your method of shaming people into silence only serves to stroke your ego.
If you say so. Have some Mencken.


"The way to deal with superstition is not to be polite to it, but to tackle it with all arms, and so rout it, cripple it, and make it forever infamous and ridiculous. Is it, perchance, cherished by persons who should know better? Then their folly should be brought out into the light of day, and exhibited there in all its hideousness until they flee from it, hiding their heads in shame....."



I agree.
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Old 05-23-2019, 11:31 AM
 
4,204 posts, read 2,568,470 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rafius View Post
If you say so. Have some Mencken.


"The way to deal with superstition is not to be polite to it, but to tackle it with all arms, and so rout it, cripple it, and make it forever infamous and ridiculous. Is it, perchance, cherished by persons who should know better? Then their folly should be brought out into the light of day, and exhibited there in all its hideousness until they flee from it, hiding their heads in shame....."



I agree.
Of course you will agree with anything that supports your position of hostility. You are hostile as if someone cares whether or not you believe in their belief system or not. Are you hoping to score a date with omega or something and his belief tends to get in the way?
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:52 PM
 
Location: USA
3,427 posts, read 1,245,681 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabfest View Post
None belief is self-explanatory... it's the evangelizing non-believers the poster was probably trying to get a better feel for, but it's simply a means to an end.
Many believers would consider me an "evangelizing non-believer" I suppose. But my "evangelizing" is merely a detailed response in kind to what appears to be the ridiculous claims made by individuals who are still afflicted with ancient superstitions.
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Sun City West, Arizona
22,055 posts, read 10,266,157 times
Reputation: 20102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of the Nonsense View Post
I doubt that anyone here really expected to change your mind. But before you go you really should make an effort to understand the point of view of non believers.

...
You make a lot of good points in your post. But I want to just focus on the above for a moment.

I agree, I don't really expect any of the (especially) right wing christian posters to suddenly change their minds about their faith. But I expect them to consider the point of view that other non-christians have. Whether those non-christians are atheists or are of some other religion/philosophy.

The problem is that many of them are afraid to really think about things. I've mentioned this before, but when I was teaching earth science, I had a number of christian parents come and say -- literally -- "I don't want my son/daughter to think". And, for children of parents like that...thinking wasn't happening anyway. They were pretty much the stepford children of religion.

A couple of times I've had christians -- when they learned I was a Buddhist -- ask me, "Why would you want to be a member of an Asian religion?" To which my answer has been, "Why would you want to be a member of a Middle Eastern religion". The blank stares and mouths dropping open were interesting.
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Old 05-23-2019, 01:19 PM
 
Location: USA
3,427 posts, read 1,245,681 times
Reputation: 1011
Quote:
Originally Posted by phetaroi View Post
You make a lot of good points in your post. But I want to just focus on the above for a moment.

I agree, I don't really expect any of the (especially) right wing christian posters to suddenly change their minds about their faith. But I expect them to consider the point of view that other non-christians have. Whether those non-christians are atheists or are of some other religion/philosophy.

The problem is that many of them are afraid to really think about things. I've mentioned this before, but when I was teaching earth science, I had a number of christian parents come and say -- literally -- "I don't want my son/daughter to think". And, for children of parents like that...thinking wasn't happening anyway. They were pretty much the stepford children of religion.

A couple of times I've had christians -- when they learned I was a Buddhist -- ask me, "Why would you want to be a member of an Asian religion?" To which my answer has been, "Why would you want to be a member of a Middle Eastern religion". The blank stares and mouths dropping open were interesting.
As we all know, Jesus was a fair haired European man.



But your point of course is that Christian parents want their children to believe exactly what they are told to believe by them, and not be influenced by any so called "modern knowledge." This applies to parents of ALL religious persuasions, not just Christians. Which explains why so many of the Islamic countries have essentially never emerged from the dark ages.
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Old 05-23-2019, 01:27 PM
 
Location: Sun City West, Arizona
22,055 posts, read 10,266,157 times
Reputation: 20102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of the Nonsense View Post
As we all know, Jesus was a fair haired European man.



But your point of course is that Christian parents want their children to believe exactly what they are told to believe by them, and not be influenced by any so called "modern knowledge." This applies to parents of ALL religious persuasions, not just Christians. Which explains why so many of the Islamic countries have essentially never emerged from the dark ages.
And it was amazing how Jesus looked like Jeffrey Hunter!
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Old 05-23-2019, 01:49 PM
 
4,204 posts, read 2,568,470 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of the Nonsense View Post
Many believers would consider me an "evangelizing non-believer" I suppose. But my "evangelizing" is merely a detailed response in kind to what appears to be the ridiculous claims made by individuals who are still afflicted with ancient superstitions.
That notion is probably not limited to believers. But anywho, you are taking time out of your lifespan to enlighten others to "the truth", whereas you could be spending your time in the science lab or writing some scientific paper for publishing...so there's that.
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Old 05-23-2019, 11:52 PM
 
Location: Valencia, Spain
15,189 posts, read 10,269,834 times
Reputation: 2586
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabfest View Post
Are you hoping to score a date with omega or something and his belief tends to get in the way?
Nah! He's got a boil on his nose. It's really off-putting.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:10 PM
 
38,710 posts, read 10,657,526 times
Reputation: 5064
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabfest View Post
That notion is probably not limited to believers. But anywho, you are taking time out of your lifespan to enlighten others to "the truth", whereas you could be spending your time in the science lab or writing some scientific paper for publishing...so there's that.
We believe that, if the Religous control movement gets their way, there won't be Labs or scientific Papers. The bible will be the only science book that is needed.

That is why the pressure to debunk the Claims of Christianity has to be kept up and why a base of popular support for a society politics and education Not controlled by religion is needed. That's why we do what we do - in our own small way.

And those who oppose us are working against science and for Religious control, even if they didn't intend to.
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