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TFBW's Forum • View topic - what can be known about God is plain

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 Post subject: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2008 4:38 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2008 3:03 am 
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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:41 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:40 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 12:36 pm 
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Some atheists are hardcore reductionists who like to describe X as "nothing but Y" (for certain values of X and Y). There are others who allow themselves a little more mysticism, while not giving it any greater status than an intellectual curiosity. These are inclined to look at the stars in awe, or wonder at the beauty of a fractal, or marvel at the complexity of an organism. They describe this sense of awe as a numinous feeling, but they do not allow the feeling to give rise to belief in deities. Rather, they treat it as a pleasant intellectual curiosity: a nice sensation to have, but lacking any real consequence.

I think that Romans 1:20 makes it pretty clear that God's invisible attributes are made clear in nature, so much that we can not reasonably claim "we don't know whether God exists," or, "we don't know what he's like". This seems little more than a paraphrase of the verse, so if you think my interpretation is off, you'll have to explain why in more detail.

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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2008 6:07 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:23 am 
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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 10:17 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:42 pm 
these are good points and insights. And i agree with them.

but i dont feel you've yet joined me in my goal of somehow expressing this in a way that atheists would agree to. Maybe you meant to imply that.

That we've come around in both of your replies to choices people make based on experiences, say awe and guilt, it think we're getting close to what i was trying to think about here.

I'm glad to hear that you also feel like the experience of numinous awe is a "religious experience." that helps my point. Ie i bet a bunch of atheists would agree too--and that common ground here between atheists (eg) and christians is i think what paul had in mind when he wrote rom 1:19-20. This common ground is my goal here. And i also bet that atheists would agree that they do, in fact, actively dismiss such religious experiences.

And your distinction between experience and judgments is a good one, too. Again, to my goal here, i believe that atheists would agree.

Obviously, i think atheists would argue that their dismissal and judgments are the right ones, but that is a different question. Us all admitting that we're making judgments about experiences, some of which appear to include within themselves a pointer to the supernatural--i think that's enuf to confirm that what paul said in rom 1:19-20a appears to be true on its face among atheists and theists alike.

i plan on asking this question on http://www.atheists.org/nogodblog/index ... sts_hooray and seeing what i get. I think i'll not mention the romans connection at first, because i think i'll get more unbiased answers, rather than answers that are meant to debunk. I think "what the atheist does with awe" is a pretty interesting question on its face anyway.

Thanks so much for this unique forum!


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 Post subject: Re: what can be known about God is plain
PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 1:34 am 
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I don't know how i would call myself, atheist or agnostic, but i think that i can speak for any of them in this sense.

I don't think that my heart is dark because i don't acknowledge god, and i don't take any ofense when you say that to me, even tough i understand what you feel when some atheists say that our behaviour is basically controlled by electrical impulses (and i might add instinct/genes wich might determine our behaviour in general). We are much more complex than that, and there are a great number of other factors that influence our behaviour, wich i belive you to might be familiar.

When you study animals and nature, you get used to think that we all act on instinct and impulses, because we too are animals, and when you think like that, its not hard to go from being a believer to an atheist, since nature becomes the center of everything, and men only a mere part of.

But you can't deny that we are very much unlike any other animal.

The thing is, i don't agree with any of the models of God ofered by religion. I don't think that He is fair and just, and i don't think that He could be a real possibility in any of the already determined models of God that exist, i think that they contradict themselves all the time.

There are some positive aspects in religion, but there are also a lot of negatives one. There are a lot of stories in the bible that estimulate blind and unquestionable faith, and altough there always might be room for interpretation, a lot of people get it wrong.

Still, i can see the beauty of the world and awe in it, and i don't find it any less beautiful because there's an explanation for it, i think the fact that we may pursue explanations for everything only adds to the fun of it.
I don't think there's anything to lose by not atributing this feeling of astonishment with the marvels of the world, with the presence of some deity.
And since we non-belivers, can also take part in that what you call religious experiences, without ever acknowledging it to be some deity, then the non-religious man, is no less complete and happy than the religious one.

It just doesn't make any difference how you call it, and how i call it, since we all can take part in it. I might be more agnostic than atheist after all.

I can only hope then that you do not take ofense in my views, and we can talk about it, and so we can understand each other more.

And that you do not mind my spelling, since i am not natural to this language.


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