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God and his mysterious ways

Started by ManUfan, November 03, 2022, 05:28:36 PM

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aitm

If it's one thing Christian's are good at , it's ignoring everything in the babble ceptin folks getting busy wit each other.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Luther Martini

#16
In order to better prepare them for facing a world where a large percentage of the population have an impaired ability to think logically and whose judgment is clouded by superstition, I think that young people should learn about the bible under the guidance of a teacher who challenges them to critically evaluate whether or not what they are reading is bullshit. 




"Freedom is something that dies unless it's used."  -- Hunter S. Thompson

GSOgymrat

#17


Assuming Jesus Christ was the son of God and sent to save humanity from itself, wouldn't it have been better to use his eternal life guiding humanity through the ages to be wiser, kinder, and more reverent rather than spending a few years giving advice and then ascending? Just a thought.

aitm

Jesus didn't "sacrifice" himself for crying out loud, he went from a homeless hungry preacher to a god. Sounds like a hell of an upgrade to me.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

ManUfan

Quote from: Luther Martini on November 07, 2022, 10:33:31 AMIn order to better prepare them for facing a world where a large percentage of the population have an impaired ability to think logically and whose judgment is clouded by superstition, I think that young people should learn about the bible under the guidance of a teacher who challenges them to critically evaluate whether or not what they are reading is bullshit. 






Yep. And they shouldn't have to thank Jesus for lunch.

ManUfan

Quote from: GSOgymrat on November 07, 2022, 02:02:20 PM

Assuming Jesus Christ was the son of God and sent to save humanity from itself, wouldn't it have been better to use his eternal life guiding humanity through the ages to be wiser, kinder, and more reverent rather than spending a few years giving advice and then ascending? Just a thought.

A very good though. It's a pity that Christians can't see the wood for the trees.

Blackleaf

#21
If we grant the Gospel story to be 100% accurate (despite contradictions), I'd say Jesus sacrifice was more about the pain and humiliation rather than his life, per se.

But that still doesn't change the fact that Jesus' "sacrifice" was completely nonsensical. God tortured and killed himself so he could justify forgiving us for existing? That does not follow.

In Lord or the Rings, Boromir sacrifices himself to protect the halflings. His death was for the purpose of saving others. While the halflings were taken prisoner anyway, the logic here is sound. If, however, Boromir dropped on his own sword for no apparent reason, when there was no immediate danger, and we were told it was to save the Hobbits, the logic would not follow. We would ask, "How does falling on his own sword help?"

So, how does Jesus sacrifice help? It doesn't. It only makes sense if you go with God's arbitrary rules, and don't question them at all.
"Oh, wearisome condition of humanity,
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound."
--Fulke Greville--

Luther Martini

Quote from: Blackleaf on November 07, 2022, 04:56:03 PMGod tortured and killed himself so he could justify forgiving us for existing? That does not follow.


Neither does the idea that mankind needed to be forgiven in the first place.

Many years ago, my wife and I attended a cocktail party where I didn't know anyone except the hosts.  I wandered into the den to look at some photos on the wall, and overheard a rather spirited (no pun intended) discussion among some of the other men at the party, all scholarly christian types, regarding original sin. One of them asked me if I had an opinion on original sin, and I said, "sure do.  I think that it is the cornerstone of one of the most ingenious and effective marketing schemes ever devised.  I mean shit...I'm no scholar, in fact I'm just a salesman, but I know effective marketing when I see it, and if you can get a bunch of people to buy into the idea that they came into this world as sinners doomed to burn in some mystical place that you have invented called Hell, and the only way out is to join your cult, well ... you have created a compelling need, and offered a proprietary solution --- that's power.  And given the fact that almost two thousand years later people all over the world still accept this snake oil bullshit as fact is testament to the effectiveness of the program.  Marketing, gentlemen, at its most cynical, powerful, and effective."  They didn't talk to me the rest of the evening. 
"Freedom is something that dies unless it's used."  -- Hunter S. Thompson

Shiranu

#23
Quote from: Mike Cl on November 06, 2022, 03:39:45 PMSo if it is used literally, then I must realize that the people are not ethical or moral--or nice.

What does "literally" mean? The Bible is contradictory, so it cannot logically be taken literally.

I'm presuming you mean the "teachings" and generally more Old Testament - in which case... let's take them literally.

----------------------- Prophets summed up, feel free to skip pass if you get the point ;)  ----------------------------------------

Amos - "Angry shepherd proclaims that empires that exploit the poor, exploit the legally unprotected, who exploit the power for their own gain are cursed by "God" (Goodness) and are destined to fall."

Solomon - "No matter how holy the king, no matter how great his possessions, if he wavers from the path of Righteousness - if he no longer treats his people in a way that is seen as good - even the greatest of kings will see it all turned to dust if they are not wise."
[This does not even get into the Psalms, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes attributed to him and the wisdom within]

Esther - "Woman in power who is compassionate help stops an evil political plot to commit genocide on the Israelite people."

Obadiah - "Killing us, enslaving us, and behaving like a bunch of barbaric assholes is going to bite you in the ass one day."

Micah - "Seriously, did you not listen to the upset goat herder earlier? You have got to stop living so corruptly, exploiting the workers while you live in palaces like gods. It's going to lead to our downfall."

-----------------------------------End of Summaries--------------------------------------

All of these are quite important messages today that are read through a literal translation of just the Old Testament; this doesn't even get into the practical value of preserving a people's history in a mass produced text.

There is no reason to slit the baby's throat as you toss out the dirty bathwater.

Without the Tanakh and Torah... there is no Jewish people, and I think we can at least admit that the world would be a far less pleasant place and far more backwards if that was the case.

QuoteIf it is interpreted then one can make all kinds of claims with no relation to reality and just to gain power. 

You can say the same of capitalism and socialism; both have inherent flaws that, when interpreted in negative ways, can become overwhelmingly destructive and damaging.

Hell, you can say the same about anti-theism - but something tells me people here would be a little less appreciative in hearing that their ideology, under certain interpretations, can be used for some of the most inhumane barbarism humans can come up with.

History, unfortunately, does not always couture to our biases.

QuoteOther than that it produces little that is good.

This is an utterly subjective statement, is it not?
All the evils that men cause to each other because of certain desires, or opinions or religious principles, are rooted in ignorance. [All hatred would come to an end] when the earth was flooded with the knowledge of God. - Moses Ben Maimon

Shiranu

#24
Quote from: GSOgymrat on November 07, 2022, 12:23:20 AMThe Bible is a collection of stories and stories are how we interpret reality. Narrative is everything. Believing that everyone is damn and the only means of salvation is to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior affects how you interact with others.

What exactly is the problem with this statement?

The damnation of not accepting Christ's message, purely through a literal sense of Biblical reading and taking into account only afterlife beliefs that would have been common at the time of Christ, is not a bad thing - it's essentially, "Do you really want to spend time in heaven with Stalin and Jeffery Dahlmer?"

QuoteThe narrative that you will be judged by God when you die and if you didn't follow the rules of the Bible you will be punished for eternity causes people untold levels of anxiety.

We don't worry about the law telling you not to speed giving people anxiety - so why should we worry about the law telling people not to sleep with other's partners, to not kill or steal their possessions?

The laws of the Torah and Tanakh are there for those who are in covenant with God - they are just believed to make you a more "pure" person and thus deserving to skip to the end where everyone lives in peace. The 10 Commandments (I know, not Jesus but he did say he wasn't here to change the rules) is pretty much the Gentile and non-Orthodox Jews, "Okay... here is the abridged rules, just live up to these ones." or their own Buddha's, "Noble Eight-fold Path" ... and I really don't think there is much in the 10 Commandments we can get too upset with, is there?
All the evils that men cause to each other because of certain desires, or opinions or religious principles, are rooted in ignorance. [All hatred would come to an end] when the earth was flooded with the knowledge of God. - Moses Ben Maimon

Shiranu

Quote from: ManUfan on November 07, 2022, 04:02:14 AMBecause it's the word of God.
If that doesn't matter to the theist, I don't see why it should matter to the atheist.

QuoteIf it's the word, it's the word.. you'd never read a car owners manual and ignore or change the instructions, that'd make the manual useless wouldn't it.

Again, I find it odd that atheists often are more dogmatic about the Bible having to be taken as the fundamental truth more than any church I have been involved with in the past, and certainly more-so than anyone in public who has ever expressed their Christianity to me (unless you want to count the 2-3 door-to-door converters who got a few words in despite me telling them i'm not interested).
All the evils that men cause to each other because of certain desires, or opinions or religious principles, are rooted in ignorance. [All hatred would come to an end] when the earth was flooded with the knowledge of God. - Moses Ben Maimon

Shiranu

Quote from: GSOgymrat on November 07, 2022, 02:02:20 PMAssuming Jesus Christ was the son of God and sent to save humanity from itself, wouldn't it have been better to use his eternal life guiding humanity through the ages to be wiser, kinder, and more reverent rather than spending a few years giving advice and then ascending? Just a thought.
A misunderstanding of eternal life -eternal life of the soul in the world beyond understanding - Jesus the physical entity was not immortal, as made pretty obvious by his death on the cross.

The Essenes in particular, whom Jesus quite likely belong to, were very obsessed with the idea that the body and the soul were two utterly separate entities - and that the soul was trapped within a human body looking to be saved from this objectively shitty world.

Even other Jews thought they cared about that a little too much... but they were some of the earliest recorded little-C communists, so that's pretty cool. Think maybe Amish, Quaker as the post-Christ version of this specific branch and you have a pretty good idea of what they were like - and think about how seriously those groups take the concept of the "soul".

So for them, "eternal life" would very much have nothing to do with this world - they would be quite sickened if it was I think.
All the evils that men cause to each other because of certain desires, or opinions or religious principles, are rooted in ignorance. [All hatred would come to an end] when the earth was flooded with the knowledge of God. - Moses Ben Maimon

Mike Cl

Quote from: Shiranu on November 10, 2022, 06:43:34 PMWhat does "literally" mean? The Bible is contradictory, so it cannot logically be taken literally.

I'm presuming you mean the "teachings" and generally more Old Testament - in which case... let's take them literally.

----------------------- Prophets summed up, feel free to skip pass if you get the point ;)  ----------------------------------------

Amos - "Angry shepherd proclaims that empires that exploit the poor, exploit the legally unprotected, who exploit the power for their own gain are cursed by "God" (Goodness) and are destined to fall."

Solomon - "No matter how holy the king, no matter how great his possessions, if he wavers from the path of Righteousness - if he no longer treats his people in a way that is seen as good - even the greatest of kings will see it all turned to dust if they are not wise."
[This does not even get into the Psalms, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes attributed to him and the wisdom within]

Esther - "Woman in power who is compassionate help stops an evil political plot to commit genocide on the Israelite people."

Obadiah - "Killing us, enslaving us, and behaving like a bunch of barbaric assholes is going to bite you in the ass one day."

Micah - "Seriously, did you not listen to the upset goat herder earlier? You have got to stop living so corruptly, exploiting the workers while you live in palaces like gods. It's going to lead to our downfall."

-----------------------------------End of Summaries--------------------------------------

All of these are quite important messages today that are read through a literal translation of just the Old Testament; this doesn't even get into the practical value of preserving a people's history in a mass produced text.

There is no reason to slit the baby's throat as you toss out the dirty bathwater.

Without the Tanakh and Torah... there is no Jewish people, and I think we can at least admit that the world would be a far less pleasant place and far more backwards if that was the case.


By literally, I mean 'literally'--not specifically 'teachings'.  Would you consider this to be a teaching or command? "You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me,". Seems rather barbaric to me.

There are something like 613 commands within the OT. Many are basically a handbook for living in the desert 2000/3000 years ago. Not many apply to today's world. The hugely touted 10 commandments is conflicted.  By that I mean they are found in three separate places in the OT and they do not agree with one another.  They are not numbered, so the writers of the 10 got to pick them.  (These are found in Exodus 20 and in Deut.5)  The third place, Exodus 34:10-26.  In some versions of the OT, these are numbered.  But they are not anywhere near the same as the first two.  this set includes commandments such as; Do not make molten gods; keep the feast of unleavened bread; Do not boil a baby goat in its mother's milk--the rest are fun, don't hesitate to look them up. I regard this set as basically nonsense. 

Okay, let's not throw out the baby or the bath water.  But what is a 'baby' (which I gather is at least kernel of truth)??  Who gets to decide?  It is simply a matter of opinion.  If you simply want to cherry pick the verses, then I will agree that some of the verses give good advice and some of them read as poetry.  But try to get a consensus of which is which. And Rabbis have been at it for thousands of years. 

Without the torah, there would be more peace in this world.  The big 3 (Jewish, christian and muslim) have brought more destruction than peace to this world--in my opinion.  the torah led to the creation of the scriptures of the other two culprits.  They are destructive in my opinion.  But they are equal in that all of them can be cherry picked to prove anything.  Simply look at this country now--white christian nationalism--what the fuck is that if not destructive.  And they have cherry picked both the old and new testments of 'prove' they are right. 

Yes, preserving a people's history in a written text is of value.  But I do not regard the OT as that.  If it were not produced as a means of controlling the population, it has certainly been used as such.  And a history should be labeled as such, not the Word of God and used as a hammer of submission.  And a history should be factual not mainly fiction. 
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?<br />Then he is not omnipotent,<br />Is he able but not willing?<br />Then whence cometh evil?<br />Is he neither able or willing?<br />Then why call him god?

Hydra009

#28
Quote from: Shiranu on November 10, 2022, 06:43:34 PMAll of these are quite important messages today that are read through a literal translation of just the Old Testament; this doesn't even get into the practical value of preserving a people's history in a mass produced text.

There is no reason to slit the baby's throat as you toss out the dirty bathwater.
Okay, the Bible has a few good messages.  Even the Skeptics' Annotated Bible points that out.  And yes, it records a people's history.  I have yet to meet a single person who has ever disputed either of these points.

But I'm a bit curious about the "slitting the baby's throat" rhetoric.  What is Mike proposing that warrants such a characterization?  Did I miss a post advocating genocide or the complete destruction of what is afaik the world's most published book? (a formidable undertaking)  Or did he just express disapproval of the main thrust of the work (there are other messages in the Bible that aren't so good, as we all well know), widespread uncritical approval of such stories, and/or deliberate attempts to structure modern societies around what religious people imagine is a "godly" way of life?

GSOgymrat

Quote from: Shiranu on November 10, 2022, 07:10:33 PMA misunderstanding of eternal life -eternal life of the soul in the world beyond understanding - Jesus the physical entity was not immortal, as made pretty obvious by his death on the cross.

When you're God you make the rules. If Jesus can physically return from the dead, which is the claim, there is no reason why he should have to stay dead. He is supposed to return, so why not return every hundred years and continue to help people? If Jesus came to Earth to bring humans closer to God, he clearly did a terrible job (you say it is an "objectively shitty world") given all the options at a divine being's disposal.

Seriously though, if there is a divine being I don't believe a human could understand it any more than a virus can understand a human. Of course, nobody wants to hear that if there is a god it would work in mysterious ways, ways so mysterious they are incomprehensible and a waste of time to consider. The reason God has the emotions of a primate, such as jealousy, which is an emotion that stems from insecurity, is because humans experience it.

People want answers and they want to avoid existential dread. They want to know that something is eternal. They want cosmic justice. They want to not feel alone so they gather together, believe in explanatory stories, and create reassuring rituals-- because they are primates with brains that have evolved to recognize patterns and make predictions. People hate chaos, they hate the unpredictable, they hate impermanence and they create stories about gods because gods provide order, purpose, and something eternal. This is why religion is pervasive.

"If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him"... And so we did.