Saturday, July 31, 2010

You better recognize

I can't help myself, but when something good happens to me, I want to thank God. And of course likewise when something bad happens to me I want to call upon the Lord for help. We live in a world where there are many times in our lives we need some help. But I'm thankful for the many times things work out for us and we are also able to give thanks. Today was one of those days I was thankful. I dodged a couple of bullets and was able to get a lot of work done. (And yes... make a little money).

As I was driving home I said a small prayer of thanks. It got me thinking....

Maybe just once in a blue moon and in a moment of weakness do you guys ever find yourself wanting to thank God or ask Him for help?

late, feeno

28 comments:

  1. "As I was driving home I said a small prayer of thanks. It got me thinking"

    And when you really need supernatural help and it dont happen,faithful excuses serve to fill the gap right?.Faithful folks say, oh this time obviously the Gods decided against answering our prayers.

    No, i dont bother praying to non existant Gods anymore Feen.Life has taught me there is a cost some folks in this world must pay ,for some other folks "right" to be involved in contined promotion of such thinking.

    I know praying to Gods wont do anything at all to help change my cult families mind.I know plenty of prayers have been sent to a God, thats either deaf and dumb,or more likely simply dont exist.

    Changing my cult family relys totally on better promotion of logic! and common sense! and humanity! and promotion! of less reliance on non existant Gods ,something which continued promotion of Gods and promotion of prayer and devotion on charisma tends to only help destroy hope.

    No i dont expect help from Gods that dont exist.I realised the blindness of faith,is not helpful for progression humanity.

    And i have even less hope of help,in a world still so full of many deluded folks who fully believe prayer to Gods will help, who`s devotion on the charisma clouds their ability to see the logic and common sense needed for change.

    Prayer wont help me Feen.

    Best chance i have for bringing about change is to use logic and common sense,and keep pointing out to faithful folks that Jesus only had a bad weekend!on the cross.To keep pointing out!, continued promotion of faith comes at a cost that some people must! pay the price for with their whole in this life here on earth.

    Praying for change in Iraq wont help us.If anything it only keeps the delusion alive,making matters much worse.

    Demotion! of prayer and faith in Gods, and more reliance on humanity! and logic! and common sense!,is the best real "hope" there is for real honest change in places like Iraq.

    Only somebody devoted to the charisma of faith, would ever really believe prayer has any honest effect.Just like only somebody devoted to the charisma of a bad politician,would bother to keep voting for them.

    Your faith of prayer is about as useful as a bad politician is,but sadly some people still continue to vote for them both.

    No Feen Gods and prayer have long proved themselves to be little more than very costly and dangerous wishful thinking.

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  2. 1,Human mind "creates" God faiths.

    2,Human "created" God faith tends to split and devides humans into seperate groups.

    3,Humans send prayer to "created" God thats actually non existant ,asking for help.

    4,Non existant God! cant answer prayer!,so then human mind decides to "create" plenty of EXCUSES .

    5,Human mind in all honesty only ever managed to "create" one huge big stumbling block! and a ancient idiotic boo boo!

    And some folk still happen to pay for it.

    Why would i ever even bother continuing with prayer Feen?.To me its lots like cheering for the return of Hitler.

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  3. Why do humans feel like 'thanking' something (or somebody) for when something goes our way?
    ---------------------------------------------------
    Dawkins likened the human brain to a “hyperactive agency detection device,” which has decided “when in doubt, suspect an agent,” that agent being a supreme being.

    Dawkins ended his lecture by concluding that as humans evolved, we developed an overwhelming urge to keep track of the “mental money” of social debt, gratitude and grudges. This was necessary for maintaining harmony in small tribal units. However, as we have developed other means to track these societal debts, a vacuum was created. The result is “vacuum activity” — a behavior performed obsessively, even if there is no reason to do so (much like a dog trying to bury a bone in a carpet), Dawkins said.

    The result is that when something good happens you “want to thank. Who to thank in a vacuum? You thank God. If you feel guilt in a vacuum you still feel guilty, so you apologize to God,” Dawkins said.

    In the end, Dawkins said, “these are legitimate contributions to evolution, even though they are mistakes.”

    http://www.newsminer.com/view/full_story/8782758/article-Dawkins-speaks-to-overflow-Fairbanks-audience-about-humans--religion?instance=local_news

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  4. Fee-No!

    Me? I pray a lot!

    I would say that most, if not all, of my "prayers" are in the form of sub-audible mutterings rather than any form than might be described as traditional or formal prayer. I frequently mutter, "Lord Jesus, Help Us All!" or, "Hurry on Home Jesus and Straighten Up this Mess!" and other thoughts of that ilk. I'm not kidding either.

    I don't expect that it will have any effect on anything, but I do it anyways. I figure it can't hurt, right? If nothing else it provides an outlet for some of my frustration and may even be some sort of expression of hope. I don't know...

    On Gratitude.

    I suppose we have all heard that perhaps over-used expression, "Develop an Attitude of Gratitude!" and I have experimented and worked on that. I actually do try to not take the "blessings" in my life for granted and to try to develop a sense of gratitude for the many aspects of my life that I should, or could, feel grateful for. Now, to just what I express my gratitude might differ a bit from you, I don't know? I kind of think of it as a Tip of my Hat to the Universe itself and God or No-God, as the case may be.

    SteveO

    Done with my Mrs. Jeff Phase
    And what a Relief It Is!

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  5. I really agree with what Tristan wrote. This is also related to Dawkin's "God by default" explanation. Knowledge gap in astrophysics- God fills the hole. Scientific flaw in process to carbon date- that is because God created it. Need to talk to someone about goals or issues- God becomes your shrink.

    I have also tried to see praying as goal setting and psychotherapy for religious folk. They try to externalize their anxieties, accomplishments, and desires for the outside world. I know that when I have a bad day, I most likely have been personally responsible for the outcome and I try to learn from it. A good day is just that, a good day. Life is short, the pearly gates are a lie, make it count while you are here. Maybe all of those spreadsheets that I make with things that I need to do are my form of prayer.

    No, I do not pray. I never will. Live good, live simple, be as respectful as you can be to those around you. Hurt noone, and you will be okay.

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  6. When I want to thank someone for something that happened, I like to thank people that I know exist. There are plenty of those, many of whom I can actually thank, and many of whom (like the farmers who grew my food) I can't possibly track down and must instead just be grateful to. If something happens that is just a fortuitous event or a "stroke of good luck", I take it as just that - a random event that happened to work in my favour.

    As far as asking for help...well, I can't say that I ever am inclined to ask Yahweh, but that Thor seems like he could be pretty helpful with his hammer...

    No, I don't ever feel like asking any God for help. Real people help much better.

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  7. Jeff, many of the Farmers that grow your food pray for rain. And when it comes they are thankful. And Thor's a puss.

    Tink, I agree with your "philosophy" so to speak. But I think you can do those things while being a Christian.

    Nobody Cooler, "Sub audible mutterings" is not only a great phrase but it also describes about 95% of my prayer life. May I please have your permission to use that phrase?

    T-Vick, Wow, "Why do humans feel like 'thanking' something or (somebody) when things go our way"? Because God has implanted His knowledge in us and created us to be socially interactive with him, that's why. I know you you'd rather put your faith in what Dawkins says. But for the record let's look at what the Bible says. "Job 32:8 "But it is a spirit in man, And the breath of the Almighty gives them understanding. And 1st Corinthians 2:11 says "For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of man which is in him?..." This is why I'm always harping about how we are different than animals. We were created in God's image, these verses explain why we can reason, plan, create and above all communicate with God.

    G$, I think your just fine the way you are, but instead of praying to change the world, try praying that God changes you. (If you want). And your right about non existent gods not being able to answer prayer. There is only one living God.

    Later, feeno

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  8. Feeno-

    I would say that, although those verses do "explain" what you're thinking... they actually don't explain anything.

    At best they are untested hypothesis. The spirit, or spiritual essence, has never been confirmed. Let alone an actual spiritual soul which Christians say communicate via the Holy Spirit.

    These things are strictly conjecture.

    You're claims to believe in such things would be more meaningful if these things were proved something other than metaphysical assumptions.

    What Dawkins has done, and I think quite well, is find working explanations which describe, in natural terms, the phenomenon you mention here.

    The difference being: Dawkins has a working model which, although theoretical, is supported by evidence, is testable, and explains the exact thing you are concerned with.

    Your Biblical "explanation" is still unjustified, and so carries no real weight in the real world.

    You can believe in it if you wish... but all it will amount to is little more than an unfounded belief. And if you're validating your faith based on certain truth claims... then these claims need to be more than just... "A moving feeling."

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  9. I generally second the non-theistic sentiments above. Gratitude? Yes. Prayer? If by prayer we mean "dialogue with the Still Small Voice," then yes. The SSV still interacts with 'me' the exact same way it did when I was convinced that it was God talking; supportive, gentle, sometimes firm when I know I've behaved badly, etc. That's because it isn't really God talking, and never was.

    Gratitude needs no target. I feel it all the time.

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  10. T-Vick

    I agree, I was only offering an explanation from the Bible. That's where my faith rests. Yours is in Dawkins. I'm also not really that impressed with the "real" world. Maybe it's because I'm not of this world? I'm just a pilgrim passing through. and BTW, glad I got to meet you on my journey. And maybe one day in a tavern out west, we can meet, greet and eat with one another.

    GenSkep,

    Gratitude needs no target, how about blame? Does it need a target?

    Peace, feeno

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  11. I would say that neither gratitude or blame NEED a target. This doesn't mean they won't always have one. Sometimes folks deserve a good thanking or blaming.

    My dear sister recently applied and interviewed for a job that she was perfectly suited and qualified for. She got it and immediately declared it a miracle and thanked God. I (gently) suggested that she might also thank her new boss and the mutual friend that recommended her, since they were more obviously responsible.

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  12. Feen said.." We were created in God's image, these verses explain why we can reason, plan, create and above all communicate with God."

    Do you have good evidence for proof of that,that you can show us,that we were created in God image?.Or are we expected to simply believe these claims with faith, because some human prophet told us to.The same type of blind faith that sees animals mutilated in India each and every year,for sacrifice.Blind faith that still sees many African kids accused and killed as witches.Blind faith that still sees many Muslims abused and mistreated.Blind faith that sees some parents show total disregard of their own childrens safety,in Russian doomsday cults that live out in caves in mid winter or children refused blood transfusions.

    I dont follow blind faith Feen, i will not be involved in continued promotion of such things .If i must pay the price of seperation from my own christian blind faith following family, so be it!.The time has come when people need to be prepared to face up to the nastiness of blind faith,and even the youth of the USA are coming out of the closet and letting their parent know! their children wont be involved in following blind faith that has been so damaging WORLDWIDE.And some of these kids will pay for their honesty,their own blind faith family will treat them badly,like blind faith has traditionally always done!.

    Feen said.." I think your just fine the way you are, but instead of praying to change the world, try praying that God changes you. (If you want). And your right about non existent gods not being able to answer prayer. There is only one living God. "

    Feen why would i bother praying to a non existent god that obviously cant even change his many nasty blind followers?.

    See Feen, sadly this is how devotion on all the charisma tends to make the blind followers.You look around you with those fancy faith sunglasses on, feeling like you looking real cool and dandy,and got that salvation and life eternal in the bag thing.

    You tell me i need to pray that God changes me?.Yet its so obvious your non existent God cant even change a West Bro Baptist mean nasty heart.Cant even step in ans change the heart and mind of African kid killers.Cant even speak to nasty religious faithful Islamist .Cant even tell stupid Russian dooms day cult idiots,its stupid and idiotic to put their children in such danger in caves in winter.Cant even remind president Bush to pull his head in .Cant even lead USA a country flooded with faithfully blind folk, into peace and prosperity!.

    Why the hell should i have any "faith" that gods might be able to change me?.Im not interested in involvement in Blind Faith Feen.

    There is far to much around already!.

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  13. I had said.."4,Non existant God! cant answer prayer!,so then human mind decides to "create" plenty of EXCUSES ."

    Feen says.."but instead of praying to change the world, try praying that God changes you. (If you want). "

    Islamist do the same type thing, create diversional excuses.Gurus in India too.West Bro Baptist.Exclusive Brethren.

    Why should i expect my Exclusive Brethren family would be totally honest with themselves and without use of a type of blind faith, that creates all manner of diversional excuses.If its much the normal thing to do among most all! faith believers?.Including Feens church.

    Like you Feen,whenever some one hits them with questions they just say something like ,maybe you need to pray that god changes you!.

    And like you Feen they then sits back thinking, hee hee hee, there! that really taught them folks something new!.

    I do like all these folk.

    But im not about to join them and be involved with them in continued promotion of that what dont work.What never worked.What caused people to be "lulled" into "relying" on Non existant Gods,when they really needed to learn to rely more on human intelligence!, education!, human action! and logic! and common sense! etc.

    I care about the future of humanity.And blind God faiths, has long proved it really isnt so helpful.Infact blind god faiths have even long proved themselves to be very unhelpful!.

    Why suggest i pray to that what has already long proven "itself" to be very very unhelpful ,Feen.


    Feen when a Islamic human bomb next blows himself/herself up in your neighbourhood ,maybe hurts some of your own family. Make sure you remember! Feen ,this person likely felt by "prayer" he was "changed by Gods".

    Will you yourself judge this person badly? ,when you yourself are also involved in promoting this same type of thinking.

    Why is it wrong that a Islamist exercises their personal beliefs ,yet its right that you or the West Bro Baptist ,Or Exclusive Brethren ,or Mormon or JWs etc etc ,can choose to treat other people including their own family, the way they do.

    Human wisdom tells us, we often do end up reaping that what has been sown.

    IMHO , you cannot continue to be involved in promotion blind faith in the USA, and then feel sorry for yourself when some Islamist blind faithers come and blow themselves up in your country.

    Your own blind faith Christianity continually trys to infiltrate their Islamist country.Your blind faith trys to control who can be married,or legality of abortion.Some even choosing to shoot abortionist.

    Blind faith has long caused us humans,very many problems.

    Prayer to non existent God-/s wont ever change that.Prayer to non existant God-/s will only serve! to further "embed" such ignorance into human culture worldwide.

    The fact that folks like yourself continue to help promote blind faith in many places,is "partly" reason why my own blind faith christian cult family still exists also.

    If some groups did continue to promote slavery and racism,worldwide slavery and racism would also be very "much more" likely to continue to also exist.

    Why do you considder i need to pray to gods to change me,Feen?.

    Why do you suppose there is maybe "more need" for these supposed Gods to be changing unbelieving people like me ,than there is good reason! and "more need" Gods should really start getting their shit together! if indeed they actually do exist!, and start changing some of these blind faith folks who cause us so many problems worldwide ?.

    It seems slighty haughty to me, when i hear blind faith followers telling me, maybe i need to pray Gods "change me"? .When their Gods really do already have enough! "changing people" work on their plates,trying to change all the pig headed haughty blind faith believers worldwide who do cause us all so many problems.

    Luckily, i understand these blind faithers,mean well.

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  14. I said.."Prayer to non existent God-/s wont ever change that.Prayer to non existant God-/s will only serve! to further "embed" such ignorance into human culture worldwide."

    How will it further embed the problem?.

    What happens is when people pray to non existant Gods asking for change ,such as changing the hearts of heartless people.And they see the prayers are not answered.

    Instead of seeing it for what it is.IE: that honestly its actually quite impossible! for "non existent Gods" to ever answer human prayer, because how can a "non existent" God ever do anything.

    Faithful folk simply "continually" make their excuses.Such as saying , ohhh well i guess it must be, Gods dont see it as such a good thing! to answer our prayer that we had asked.

    This way all manner of nastiness continues onward.Sanctioned by ignorance,and blind faith in the belief that non existent Gods are actually in control of matters.

    When a Islamist human bombing fails,the faithful say of well! never mind, the Gods decided it shouldnt happen this time.When a Islamist human bombing suceeds,the faithful say look! our prayers were answered.

    Its a very dangerous deeply ingrained ignorance.And no,personally i wont continue to be involved in promotion of suchlike.

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  15. @ Feeno- All due respect.

    You suggested above that you lie in your faith in the Bible, and conversely, Tristan rests his with Dawkins. Might I reassert that Dawkins is a scientist (which Tristan already did) who bases his ideas on empirical evidence and data. His positions are testable, open to further testing, and have numbers supporting his ideas. The Bible does not, which is what Gandolf is also talking about.

    I think that standing by something that is empirical in nature is a more intelligent position. For instance, lets say you developed a really awful skin infection. The doctor suggests two treatment courses. The first is an antibiotic which came through clinical trials with outstanding data supporting the intervention. Test after test indicates that the drug is effective in treating deep tissue infections, and the side effects are a concurrent presentation across many patients within the sample. You have a very clear idea how your treatment will progress.

    Or, the second is a treatment that was used 2000 years ago. It was created by people who witnessed the "effectiveness" two decades before, and there have been no tests done (nor can there be) for such treatment. But, everyone who has used it claims it to be a miracle and the only way..... From this angle, seems a little crazy does it not?

    This is the difference to a person like me. I like evidence, testing, and objectivity. And, I think that this is what Tristan was getting at by throwing Dawkins into the argument.

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  16. "Maybe just once in a blue moon and in a moment of weakness do you guys ever find yourself wanting to thank God or ask Him for help?"

    Feeno -

    Clearly, I like your blog, and your thinking, and your readers' thinking. You seem like a genuinely "nice guy"; otherwise, I wouldn't have marched in here and made myself at home. The closing line of your post, however, has troubled me a little.

    I appreciate that it's a genuine question. And I'm glad you phrased it as a question. But in the end, it's a simple variant on the "no atheists in foxholes" idea: essentially that the stance of the atheist is, at some deep level, insincere or disingenuous … that when the atheist feels weak, he just can't help himself and simply MUST cry out to God.

    I'll freely cop to occasionally feeling this tug. Old habits die hard, especially when they were introduced in infancy, reinforced through adolescence, and are shared by the culture at large. But the important follow-up question to the one you posed is: "If so … what happens next?" It can be very difficult for the believer to believe that others don't also believe, and so the believer is tempted to ask questions like " yeah, but when you're, you know, WEAK, do you believe?" And the answer is no.

    Speaking personally, it's when I feel weak that I feel it's especially dangerous to start drawing new conclusions. This, I feel, is the domain of the evangelicals. The altar call specifically targets the weak, and many sermons and worship programs are designed to create the very emotional vulnerability that the altar call preys upon. I've spent many a private NON-weak hour reading, reasoning, thinking, "praying" and clarifying my own conclusions about God. I'm not going to abandon all of that in favor of a momentary emotional impulse, a "moment of weakness."

    So, yeah. To re-answer your original question: yes and no.

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  17. Tink, G$ and Gskep

    I probably should have said "...Dawkins/science. Because I agree with you guys. And ultimately I can't prove God exists. I wish it was that easy.

    When I ask a question it's usually sincere. I was truly happy the other day and not only wanted to thank God but was thinking how it might suck for you guys not to enjoy that same experience. So I asked the question. One reason is because I am curios about these things. And another is I understand how I can't ever convince or prove to anyone that God exists. When I offer an explanation of things by using the Bible, it's not so you guys will say "WOW, that makes sense, I'm ready to say the "sinners prayer" and become a Christian. I think if that ever happens it will be between you and God.

    When I became a Christian I never even heard of "apologetics" before? When I truly started seeking God in my life not only had I never heard about any atheistic arguments to prove their was no God, I never even heard of any Christian arguments why their was God.

    I just felt a need for God in my life. All the Biblical knowledge I have picked up over these last 26 years (not that I know very much) is basically from going to church and reading my Bible. And it's only been about the last 2 years or so I realized there were "real" people out there who were really Atheists and that they had many, many, many arguments against the faith.

    Sure I would like you to have a relationship with the Lord. But again that's totally between you and Him. I can't force, trick, manipulate or even give you some new knowledge (even tho it may be true?) to make that happen.

    Knowledge wasn't a factor in me becoming a Christian. I can say this tho, since that time I submitted myself to Christ and started studying His word, it only reinforces my decision. And to date non of man's "wisdom" has impressed me enough to leave my faith.

    So in all fairness I don't think "knowledge" will have to big of an impact on your decision to become a Believer? Although people like C.S. Lewis, Josh McDowell and others did need a bunch of evidence.

    I just share the reasons why I believe what I believe.

    Be right back

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  18. Gskep

    I understand the story about your Sister. And hopefully she did thank those other people. Something tells me that she did? But ultimately we know whose in control. And maybe God puts people in our lives at certain times to help us out?

    Tink,

    You should study the dietary laws mentioned in Leviticus and Deuteronomy, you might be surprised to find how much healthier we'd be if we followed them. And they were written probably over 3,500 years ago.

    G$, again, I'm only speaking as if God did exist. But you make the mistake to think that my faith is blind. I'll admit "it is impossible to please God without faith", but my faith is far from blind.

    We must all work these things out for ourselves.

    peace, feeno

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  19. GentleSkeptic said.."You seem like a genuinely "nice guy"; otherwise, I wouldn't have marched in here and made myself at home"

    GentleSkeptic yes i would totally agree with you on that point.I personally think its been pretty much proved by empirical evidence,unlike the blind faith needed for belief in these Gods supposedly being nice guys.

    Yes i hope my friend Feeno understands me enough by now!, to remember to seperate my dislike of faith in general,from any connection to how i personally feel about the person Feeno.

    Trouble is faithful folk and their faith is got to much like a marriage,when we speak badly about their faith to them it seems it lot like we is trashing their wife.

    Yet as an atheist i dont get personally offended! when faithful folks try trashing atheism or evolution or Darwin or Dawkins or Hitchens or who ever else.These things is not my personal "devotion" or "Charisma", i dont hold it as something that is deserving of any special respect "as of right".

    It might be nice if faithful folks might think a bit more deeply about how they been free for many years! now, to trash atheism and evolution as they please.Crikey it even took near 150 years! for old Darwin to even recieve a rather begrudged belated apology, from Christians who often tend to feel so persecuted or downtrodden when their faith is disrespected.

    Atleast ! Darwin supplied some decent "empirical evidence" for evolution .Many faithful who showed little respect for the empirical evidence of evolution Darwin supplied,still get offended and feel disrespected when we atheists dont agree to follow like sheep and simply agree to have "blind faith in words of ancient prophets", who lack decent empirical evidence, for that what they have tried for years to shovel! down our throats .And many time if we didnt simply agree swallow like blind faith expects ,they phisically mistreated us! and often in many cases still do!.Dont i know it!

    Feeno has totally earned my respect! for his humanity ,but i do not respect his faith, infact im a opposer of such.I dont see why or how faith has earned any right to my respect ?,unlike Feens empirically proven! humanity ,in my opinion faith is still rooted in lies and deceit.

    I see no good reason to respect lies and deceit?,specially after all the long term pain and suffering its caused so many !

    I realize it must be tough for some faithful folks to seperate how atheists feel about the faithful person personally ,compared to how the atheist might feel about the persons faith.

    I dont know quite how to get faithful folks to fully understand this very big difference.Best i can think of doing is to try to remember to always keep reminding them.

    Faithful folks themselves have this saying, "hate the sin not the sinner".

    Well i happen to hate faith, not those who happen to be the faithful.

    Why is it considdered ok for faithful to hate the sin ,yet not considdered ok some atheist happen to hate faith?.

    Double standards much?.

    That the trouble when churches tend to mostly only teach folks about the the holy babble .Many faithful dont get to learn much about use of double standards and suchlike.

    About time some honesty and truth was taught in these churches.About time church folk tossed out the old tired and warn out bull of "we have been persecuted" memes

    And start realizing the honesty! that worldwide many people have been persecuted for thousands of years now, by the "blind faithers" who still try shoveling their faith down peoples throats!.

    I can only hope that Feen understands, its really only blind faith that i dislike.

    Peace! ,gandolf

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  20. Feen..."When I ask a question it's usually sincere. I was truly happy the other day and not only wanted to thank God but was thinking how it might suck for you guys not to enjoy that same experience. So I asked the question. One reason is because I am curios about these things"

    Yes, very sorry! Feen ,i did understand you had only asked a sincere question.I guess i should have explained i did understand that fact.

    Im honest in saying you dont ever! personally offend me Feen.But personally i just cant help being "offended by matters of faith".

    Because personally myself!, unlike you, i happen to have been on the recieving end of how damaging faith can be.Folks dont get to "choose" their family or families faith,i had no more choice of being born into Feens less harmful faith, than some badly abused Muslim or African kid killed in Africa accused of being a witch did.

    Just like folks dont get much choice about being born coloured or as slaves.

    If some body said something like "oh some slaves got treated not to badly" ,in some cases it might even be quite true! but it still dont make slavey any more rightous or palatable for a slave to be hearing.

    And some folks who happened to have lived life as slaves, will still tend to say,slavery is utter barbaric bulls**t.But we dont blame them.We say fair point!


    Feen i realized it was a sincere question,and you never offended me at all.

    Its faiths that i find to be offensive.

    Sorry my friend if my replys showed a very passionate response.But folks display passionate responses against racism and slavery too,and in my opinion, for very good reason!.

    Did you realize many atheists are actually ex christians who honestly! prayed and prayed many times! for years and years and years for Gods to please come and intervene and help them .Just like many slaves most likely did.

    It wasnt Gods that changed lives for slaves ,it was education ,knowledge, humanity and getting rid of ancient ignorant barbaric outdated ideas!.

    Gods dont ever help us .Gods only act in helping slow down progress! and further ingrain outdated ignorant ideas.


    What SUCKS BIGTIME! for me ...Is i was born into a world where people had "still" been promoting religion and prayer.

    I was cursed! with this nasty cancer! called faith at birth ,just like some folks used to be cursed at birth by slavery or racism.

    Promotion of prayer and respect of religion aint ever going to help people like me, Feen .Promotion of such ideas of religion and prayer, is lots like old school white folks who once used to be suggesting stuff like "oh some slaves got treated not to badly".

    Slavery is rubbish,its not good it dont work.Just because some slaves got treated ok ,dont make promotion of relying on the idea of slavery anymore ok does it.

    Prayer just dont work ,if it did i should be able to get Christians to all pray that God change the hearts of the nasty cult my family is oppressed by.Prayer has been well proved to be worthless.

    If it wasnt worthless ,people would be flocking more and more to more use of it.This isnt whats happening!.

    Suggesting God exist when they answer or dont answer prayers,is silly.It proves nothing.Why if Gods honestly exist, wouldnt they show for sure they were answering prayers? ,otherwise how can people know whether they are devoted to a real God or a non existant God ?.Humans suggesting the God exist whether he chooses to answer prayer or not, is just a old outdated bullshite excuse!.

    If Gods honestly exist,we human by now should be able to point out some good empirical evidence to prove such.But it cant be done!

    No ammount of faith removed slavery,it took LESS faith! LESS prayer! , more education!,more honesty !!, more humanity! and real human action!.

    Had we human sat around "praying" to Gods ,slavery would still exist! to this very day!

    Im simply being honest .And sometimes its honesty that hurts people.

    Peace....gandolf

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  21. Feen says..."I'm only speaking as if God did exist. But you make the mistake to think that my faith is blind. I'll admit "it is impossible to please God without faith", but my faith is far from blind."

    Feen says..."And ultimately I can't prove God exists. I wish it was that easy"

    Hmmmmm?? .. Ultimately you admit you actually cant prove God exists ,but yet you also suggest your faith is far from blind ?.

    Do you think this type of scientific "faith" evidence should also apply to other folks who have faith in things .Like kids who "feel" maybe monsters live under their beds .Or folks who "feel" fairys ,ghoblins,trolls, tooth fairys might exist.Should we humans simply all be prepared to have faith in Aliens ,because so happens some folks "feel" maybe they does exist?.

    I mean atleast! Aliens dont yet cause people to devide into religious groups or create human bombs to kill each other with .Or make parents refuse blood tranfusion or kill kids accused as witches.Or threaten people to eternal suffering in some place called hell,a manipulative fear tactic which has made humans be fully prepared to treat their own flesh and blood very badly! ,for thousands of years now

    Matter of fact neither do underbed monsters,or fairys,ghoblins,trolls,tooth fairys ...None of these things create the havock and nastiness that all God faiths always! have.

    Some folks of faith say my evidence is ive seen faith change people.Well guess what ive seen Ghost faith change some people too,but it dont prove ghosts! even though some folks actually grow goose bumps!

    There is very good reason why humans must DEMAND proper proof Feen.We humans cant exist living by peoples blind faith.Its far to dangerous ! ,hell next thing all manner of things would be promoted ,simply because some folks say they had a "feeling" it was good.

    (And if Gods really exist),it seems logical to think they too would know! how extremely important it is for us humans to actually DEMAND to have some decent! proper evidence that is freely able to be observed.Because the Gods would also understand the utter mayhem! and utter madness! and total chaos! that would soon destroy humanity if we humans didnt expect/demand ! some decent evidence.

    Just as has happened!, with all the faith/God guessing thats cursed our earth like a cancerous plague.Killing,hurting many people.

    Gods if they actually existed would know this was gonna happen .So either they are nasty! and thoughtless! and uncaring and set human traps, or its "more likely" they just dont exist.

    The many religious faiths are actually all prime! examples of just how very damaging blind faith really can be.

    Sadly many folks still devoted to all the charisma ,still have some trouble understanding or seeing this.

    Thankfully the kids who are thankfully less devoted on all the charisma ,are better equiped to open their eyes and use some logic to see humans actually have some real honest need to DEMAND proper evidence ,less they wish to keep experiencing all the bullshite faith has continually plagued humanity with.

    Im not against faith in God , im against blind faith in Gods.

    And blind faith is faith without proper decent evidence.

    "Feeling" maybe some god might exist ,does not equal any proper decent evidence in my "opinion".

    People have "feelings" that maybe ghosts and fairys and ghoblins might exist also ,but it would be blind faith without SOME decent evidence existing.

    Peace !, gandolf

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  22. feen - Knowledge wasn't a factor in me becoming a Christian.

    Exactly. What would you say was a factor in you becoming a Christian? Emotion?
    That was the ONLY factor at play when I became a Christian back in the mid 70's.

    ...to date non of man's "wisdom" has impressed me enough to leave my faith.

    True dat. If knowledge was not a factor in you becoming as Christian, knowledge probably will not get you out. My "deconversion" 25 years later was almost as emotionally as my conversion, but the process was much, much longer. But, something had to begin the process. For many, it is a healthy, honest doubt of what you have been believing for so long.

    So in all fairness I don't think "knowledge" will have to big of an impact on your decision to become a Believer?

    I have never, NEVER, heard of a conversion that was fostered entirely, or even mostly on knowledge. It is always driven by emotions.

    Although people like C.S. Lewis, Josh McDowell and others did need a bunch of evidence.

    I think McDowell is a fraud and would doubt many claims in his testimony. As for Lewis: "You must picture me alone in that room at Magdalen, night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England."

    Obviously, his emotions got the better of him.

    Knowledge will usually lose the battle against emotions. Knowledge can't resist facts. Knowledge loves facts.
    Emotions despise the truth. Emotions feed off of despair and wishful thinking.

    This is why W. L. Craig, the preeminent Christian debater and apologist, admitted that even if he could go back in time and be present a few days after the crucification of Jesus, and see that he never left the tomb, he would still believe.

    In a nut shell - people become Christians out of convenience, tradition, or emotions. People remain Christians for the same reasons.
    Knowledge seldom penetrates through the armor of faith.

    "Believing is easier than thinking. Hence so many more believers than thinkers."
    ~Bruce Calvert

    "Once embraced, it [belief] essentially reconfigures a piece of the mind, usually in a small peripheral way, but sometimes in a radical transformation that feels like being born again. A belief can do all of this independent of whether it is good or bad, healthy or destructive, true or false".
    ~Valerie Tarico, Ph.D.

    "In matters of religion it is very easy to deceive a man, and very hard to undeceive him".
    ~Pierre Bayle

    "A myth is a fixed way of looking at the world which cannot be destroyed because, looked at through the myth, all evidence supports the myth".
    ~Edward De Bono

    "Education teaches people how to think, while propaganda teaches people what to think."
    ~James A. C. Brown

    "Shrines! Shrines! Surely you don't believe in the gods. What's your argument? Where's your proof?"
    ~Aristophanes

    "What is faith? To me, it is nothing more then holding the opinion that an idea is true with a certainty that exceeds available evidence, and too often, ignores contrary evidence."
    ~unknown

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  23. @Tink

    Thanks... you're exactly right about how I was using the Dawkins quote.

    I don't have faith in Dawkins per se, although I find his methodology sound.

    And I would agree with Feeno also, I do have faith in science. As long as we don't forget to make the distinction between the faith Spinoza espoused, the faith in the desire to know things, the faith of the philosophers, verses religious dogma drenched faith.

    Theses are different kinds of faith altogether.

    My faith in science is justified because science yields results. It provides real answers.

    Religious faith, on the other hand, simply promises answers and then gives you a big fat IOU, extends the promise, and eventually writes you a rain check saying all will be revealed in the afterlife.

    Well... this doesn't explain anything here and now.

    And that was my point. Science does work to explain things... and so my faith in science in justified. Religious faith is unjustifiable, and so couldn't possibly constitute any conceivable actuality relevant to us humans.

    So when believers give me the devotional tract about how wonderful faith is, I don't doubt that they sincerely believe that, but it just goes to show they've never really examined it or stopped to think about it. In other words, they just take it all for granted.

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  24. @ Feeno- These dietary laws that you speak of. Is this it?

    God told Moses certain animals were “clean” to eat — those with cloven hoofs which chewed the cud such as cattle, goats, sheep, deer, and so forth. All fish with fins and scales, and insects of the locust family were also “clean.” The pig and the camel, however, were “unclean” and were not to be eaten. All carnivorous birds, sea creatures without fins and scales, most insects, rodents, reptiles, and so forth were “unclean.” This is the essence of the Dietary Laws which came from God, and because of their divine origin, many Christians wonder if these laws are still to be observed.

    Interesting enough, one of the dirtiest animals to eat now is a cow. Corporate farming has transformed the animal into a cannibalistic, growth hormone antibiotic machine. Because the demand for swine is lower, the farming of that animal is less risky, but it is still disgraceful. And, science has shown us that red meat is not good for us. A diet of chicken and fish is a much healthier option.

    On what basis was this decided? From what I understand, they made these animals "unclean" within a religious framework because the people became very sick from eating them, and the only way that they could get them to stop was to make it religious. And, to also make the dietary practices of Jewish people seperate from Pagans. Egyptians also had laws against pork.

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  25. Why don't we thank the people actually involved?

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