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Ask an atheist

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Askthepizzaguy, May 7, 2011.

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  1. Flying Pig

    Flying Pig Utrinque Paratus Retired Moderator

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    Ah yes, there is one where semihiante labello ('with lips ajar') was corrupted into sed mihi ante labello ('but, right before my eyes') - in fact, there's several like that, although few quite as dramatic or difficult to spot - and poem II has what is probably a fragment of a completely unrelated poem tacked on the end simply because nobody can find a convincing argument for where the fragment goes, but it seems to fit with the spirit. Textual integrity and 'repair' has always fascinated me.

    You see, I don't and I don't think many Christians believe that the Bible in its original form was the literal word of God. It was 'divinely inspired', which is a very ambigious phrase and while it means that human being wrote it under God's direction, it's far from clear how much of it was God talking through people and how much of it was people writing down their own views about religion. The fact that there are human writers to act as an intermediary corrupts the message so much that to learn it in the original language for accuracy's sake calls to mind the old joke about the museum worker and the dinosaur.

    And at the end of the day, remember that God reveals his plan to you personally as and when he sees fit - that's what your conscience is for, and occasionally I get insights into difficulties that I just know came from him giving me a helping hand (you could say they're just my subconscious jumping into action, but if they're both a force beyond my control showing me something that I couldn't see otherwise, what's the practical difference from here?). This makes studying the Bible still useful, but not the be-all-and-end-all - especially given God's known dislike of those who shut themselves away and study religion without doing any good in the world.
     
  2. timtofly

    timtofly One Day

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    I dropped out of college for that very reason, even though it may baffle you. I threw my hands up in the air like any good scientist and told God it was not for me. If He wanted me to "get it" it would have to be some other way.

    So I agree with you it is not important enough to me to understand, but I do my best. I have not even attempted to hi-jack this thread. We will just have to agree that we disagree on what is knowable and what is believable.
     
  3. Ziggy Stardust

    Ziggy Stardust New Englander

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    All I am saying is, if I were a Christian who truly believes in God and believes in an eternal afterlife, and believes the Bible is as close to the actual word of God we have, studying the word of God in the most original form possible would take precedent over our demure worldly experiences. If I were a Christian who truly believes in God, I'd be a monk, no doubt about that. These are the people who I believe actually believe in God.

    It's baffling to me how one would be robbed of the experience by rationalising it with: well others have had that experience and they told me it was this and that, and I am settling for that.

    Especially for someone who insist the Bible is the literal word of God to shrug and go: "I'm not going to learn Hebrew for that, I'm not going to devote my life studying the Bible, others have done that" strongly implies one thing to me. Atheists have more in common with many Christians than many Christians would feel comfortable with.
     
  4. Flying Pig

    Flying Pig Utrinque Paratus Retired Moderator

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    I'd say that monks haven't realised that God cares far more about how you make his world a better place than how much time you spend studying holy books, and would be better off going out and helping the needy than copying out bibles. That's just my personal view; I don't set much store by biblical scholarship becauce I believe that everything we need to know to live as God wants us to is obvious, in a combination of the bible and our own experiences - but, as I said, that's just my view.

    Or perhaps God's input right now, straight to me is worth more than God's input thousands of years ago to someone else? I'd certainly argue that you've got it the wrong way around.

    Now that I can sympathise with, and indeed Muslims - who do believe the Koran to be the literal word of God - believe that it has to be learnt in the original languages.
     
  5. Leoreth

    Leoreth Friend Next Door Moderator

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    I agree, and I think Ziggy generalizes a little too much, because we have to differentiate between the several branches of Christianity.

    I think he does have a point with certain bible literalists, and I've already encountered bible literalists who don't make the effort of learning to read it in Hebrew to get the actual literal word of God, but still insist on literal interpretations of their preferred translation justified by flimsy justifications such as "God will make sure he's understood in any language".
     
  6. MantaRevan

    MantaRevan Emperor

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    Agreed, but there's no point in arguing that to anyone dumb enough to interpret the bible literally.


    ---
    I am here: http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.253544,-85.481722
     
  7. Ayatollah So

    Ayatollah So the spoof'll set you free

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    Neither do I, but I DO know why it's not that surprising that there is stuff.
     
  8. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    :)

    Yeah, it's not a surprise. But, I don't think that this is anywhere near an answer. I think the question, of why existence is intrinsic, is a really good one. Unlike the question of our life, which can easily be handled with the anthropic principle coupled with biochemistry and neuroscience, I don't have any real hope that I'll ever know the answer.
     
  9. Leoreth

    Leoreth Friend Next Door Moderator

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    But I don't know if it's fair to assume "nothing" as a state of the universe is equal to all the states with something in it.
     
  10. BlueRed

    BlueRed Chieftain

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    I was born in a Muslim family but in few last years i live my life as a deist.
     
  11. Thoughtful Thug

    Thoughtful Thug Deity

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    That is unique in this forum.

    Curious. Do they know that you hold this belief?
     
  12. christos200

    christos200 Never tell me the odds

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    WHat maked you become an atheist?
     
  13. bathsheba666

    bathsheba666 Fast 'n Bulbous

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    Listening to religious people, plus thought.
     
  14. Hitti-Litti

    Hitti-Litti Deity

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    I never became religious, I've always been an atheist.
     
  15. mayor

    mayor Heart & Mind

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    could you explain that.

    I myself am religious and as such I listen to religious people but I don't 'get the urge' to become an atheist..

    About thought... maybe also a bit more of an explanation... cause well I think about things too
     
  16. Whiskey_Lord

    Whiskey_Lord Deity

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    It was a long process which, in retrospect, was an inevitable byproduct of my education. It began with my moral contentions with the Bible: I could not figure how god could condone rape, slavery, and genocide while claiming to be loving in the other half of the book. Furthermore, I figured that if I knew how to be a better person than the god of the Bible, then a) the OT especially was a gross mis-characterization of the real god (Thomas Paine's conclusion, in other words. Great minds think alike) or b) that the god of the Bible does not even exist. I went with the first option for a while, but then gradually went to the second option as I learned more about the natural world and that the supernatural isn't needed to explain anything, and that there is no verifiable evidence for its existence. That's when I finally had to admit to myself that I didn't believe and was effectively an atheist. This was not an easy thing to come to grips with, but I soon learned to live without god and feel like a much better and happier person for it (even though I don't seem like it, because now I hate religion for all the time I wasted on it). Becoming an atheist is not a decision one makes. You just realize that you are when you run out of reasons to believe.
     
  17. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    The realization that I don't believe in the supernatural yet.
     
  18. ArneHD

    ArneHD Just a little bit mad

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    The question: "Why god?"

    Edit: as in "Why should there be a god".
     
  19. Algeroth

    Algeroth 8 and 1/2

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    I was raised up in a non-religious family. Plus I gone through some misotheist phase during my puberty. I was really...scared when I discovered how much my thoughts similar to Bakunin's.
     
  20. Leoreth

    Leoreth Friend Next Door Moderator

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    Well said.
     
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