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What if we are wrong? And there is something out there? But b/c we are stuck on words to define it like 'God' we dismiss it?
We can still be good people, but we are calling 'IT' different things. Dividing us.

#god
LearnSDS 3 Nov 27
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9

I doubt I'm wrong. About the only assertion I've made in this area is I don't know. I'm confident in that statement.

By the way, I'm never actually wrong. I thought I was wrong once but it turned out later I was mistaken.

6

Aaaannnd how Exactly would this have any impact whatsoever on my day-to-day life & conduct?
Completely irrelevant in every respect.

6

I am not wrong because I am quite certain that I don't know, and freely admit it, how can honesty be wrong ?

And if there is a god, how do you know that which of the innumerable presented and contradictory versions are correct , if any ?

And if there is a god, and you want to play Pascals Wager, then how do you know that it does not prefer atheists and agnostics ? It seems probable that if you want he/she/it to be pleased with you, and it cares. Then being a member of the one group which does not tell it what to do, does not claim to have special knowledge of it, does not claim fake authority in its name, or to speak on its behalf, would probably be the best bet.

Appreciate creation may be perhaps the most reliable way to please it, whatever its intentions. While if there is no "It", then showing appreciation for material nature, is the best thing we have, in that case as well.

Tao.

5

As our understanding replaces our ignorance, the options for a god become less. Animism gave personality to everything, the wind, the sea, the trees... No one believes that now.

Our understanding of how life developed completely negates Genesis and, by extension, The Fall and the claimed reason for Jesus. Without Original Sin to propitiate, the need for a savior goes poof.

Even if a god was the 'cause' of the Big Bang, that tells us absolutely nothing about it's means, motive or hopes. Prostrating ourselves with worship has no meaning other than to expose our fear of death.

Our existence IS magical from our pathetic subjective experience of it, and yet nothing truly magical has ever been found. How is that for paradox?

5

Pascal's wager is as logically bankrupt today as it was in the 1600s.

5

Is there something out there? IDK. Maybe. Why are we searching for something to call god, or to be our god? On a personal level I'm been there right in the middle of it and today I simply do not give a shit. I'm not searching and do not have a hole in my heart that needs filled with or by anything. To think that way shows an un-easyness that I don't want to have. We are all so divided because people think differently and are so easily led. I don't know what "IT" is and I am not searching.

4

If there is "something out there," it is not any of the gods portrayed in religions and most of all, not the religions of Judaism, Xtianity, and Islam. We are not calling "IT" different things because the god of Abraham is not the same as the gods of Greece or Hinduism. Eastern gods of Buddhism and Taoism--if they can be called "gods"--are very different from Abraham's god.

I am not divided from people because they are religious, but because some try to force their religion/beliefs on me.

If there were anything 'obviously' out there, I've yet to see any evidence for it. That's the point: no one can truthfully point to anything that suggests a god, gods, or spaghetti monsters. Those who claim otherwise know they are lying but have some bizarre (selfish) motive for seeking to disinform. Ugh...

@racocn8 I agree-- I see no evidence either. However, I don't think that all people who have a belief in deity are lying about their beliefs. My mother did not lie about her belief in Jesus. I don't think all preachers--or the Pope--lie about their beliefs. However, that does not mean that they do not use their beliefs to manipulate others.

I acknowledge some people are true believers. What I meant was that those who make a claim for miracles or a proof of god are lying. Maybe some believe their own lies

@racocn8 gotcha.

4

Then perhaps we'll be in a position to stand up to it and say "how f'king dare you?".

4

Arthur C. Clarke coined it perfectly:
"Two possibilities exist: Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying."

Sure, it's scary either way. Also IF there is something so intelligent that we need to be worshiping, then why the whole runaround? The different belief systems? Something intelligent would probably have a universal, easy to understand message.
OR
Perhaps the message is for us to be curious, to figure it out for ourselves, to be at peace with either not knowing everything or learning as much as we can and being happy with that.

The golden rule, which from what I've seen, pre-dates most current religions, is a good starting point.

Another funny quote from Homer Simpson:
"“But Marge, what if we chose the wrong religion? Each week we just make God madder and madder.”
Just can't win.

Enjoy the ride everyone!

O K ,because
the reverse of this --- is arrogance 🔮
☮thanks

4

Nothing out there.
You're wrong.

When you're dead, you're dead.
End of story.

3

I don't know about gods but there are definitely goddesses out there. Those beautiful yet fierce women must be worshipped to keep them calm and happy. There is no way you can dismiss them. It's normally blokes who suffer consequences by getting kicked out when those goddesses lose their tempers. BTW, according to them, I'm always wrong.
Just being sarcastic. Lol

Ryo1 Level 8 Nov 27, 2022
3

Why don't you think about that while you're in church today?

3

Your first two sentences are actually only one sentence.

Also posted this twice.

3

There is a possibility that we are wrong. Many intelligent people have thought that there is a creator and that is called deism. It was the prevailing belief among the founding fathers. However, that is a long long way from believing that this same creator gave a set of instructions to a bunch of illiterate goat herders in the desert.* That tells you what to eat when you can eat it, what to wear and when and where you can put your penis (after someone has cut some of it off). Even Thomas Aquinus could not make that leap.
So we are still left with a possible creator. Is there any evidence of him/her/it interfering or affecting our lives? Sure medical miracles occur every day but then good people get killed by cars or die in pain so it's random. So it would seem that he/she/it is either goofing off, powerless or disinclined to meddle in man's affairs. Either way, he/she/its non-presence is as good as being non-existent So we might as well behave as if he/she/it was never there.

*Note that the Chinese had a written language at the time but he/she/it did not deign to impart their wisdom upon them.

Medical 'miracles' do not occur, ever. Just because we can't explain something at the time, doesn't make it a 'miracle'.

There is no possibility of a supreme creator, just wishful thinking on the part of those too lazy to take ownership of their bad decisions and misfortunes.

As soon as we rid ourselves of the extreme idiocy of religion, the human race will be in a much better place.

@AtheistInNC I think many of those medical miracles started as a misdiagnosis.

@AtheistInNC I would not say "no possibility" rather than low probability. For example, many years ago a guy placed a £5 bet that Elvis would return from the dead riding Shergar down Londons Mall. Then arrive at Wimbledon and win the men's singles championship. The bookmakers took the bet but had to amend it as they did not have the £25 million to cover it. So he changed it to 5p. I think the probability of God's existence is less than that.

I think the Chinese would disagree. As would historians of world religions, like Joseph Campbell (if he were still alive).

@skado A quick wiki and Chinese written language is at least 6.000 years old. That puts it at the beginning of the world/universe depending on your belief system.

@273kelvin
I’m not talking about that part, but the part about the Divine not sharing its wisdom with them.

@AtheistInNC You might be right about medical miracles but I used it as an example of just plain dumb luck. For instance, I read an article on coincidences and this event happened. A 21yo male decided he was going to end it all by throwing himself under a London Underground train.* As it happens just at that moment 2 teenage boys decided to pull the emergency cord and stop the train. The train stopped literally in the nick of time, so much so that they had to use hydraulic jacks to get him out from underneath. The young man thought better of his decision and London Transport declined to prosecute the teenagers.
Now many would look at that event as some form of divine intervention. I certainly would be loath to tell the young man that it was just dumb luck and he might as well try again another day. But we both know that given x amounts of suicides and y amount of misuse of emergency cords, at some point something like this was very liable to happen.

*Btw if you want to end it because you think the world hates you? Then your ghost will find it true when you stop a commuter train.

@273kelvin
Your example is pretty poor, isn't it?
Elvis, who did exist and has a very, very, very minute chance that he is not dead even after they found him dead in his bathroom - is not a very good comparison to something that never existed, will never exist and is only the creation of men's imaginations ?

@AtheistInNC Firstly you are correct in that there was a chance however slight that Elvis + Shergar were still alive and that the king might win Wimbledon. This is why no matter how improbable the odds, the bookmaker William Hill had to reduce the amount it could take in as a stake by a factor of 100 from £5 to 5p. However, I did say that in my opinion, I think the odds of gods existence were less than that, which is a mistake on my part because mathematically I should've said "greater" as in less probable.
It is next to impossible to prove some negatives like there is no life on Mars. All we can do is assign a probability to there being life there. I cannot prove that hobgoblins, elves and vampires do not exist.* All I can do is assume the chances are so low as to not be significant enough to alter my thinking/behaviour. (except hypothetically in discussions such as this) The odds of me winning the lottery jackpot are huge. The odds of said same increase exponentially by me not buying a ticket. But people win the jackpot nearly every week and is it possible that some kind soul might buy me a winning ticket (god if you're listening) but I'm counting on it to pay my bills.

  • I was informed by my daughter's evangelical friend, that she actually DID believe in vampires. I restrained myself from pointing out her delusion and then thought "Okay YOU don't believe in vampires but YOU'RE, not a 25-y-o female virgin" 🙂
2

Secular humanism unites all people. It is religion that divides them.

Only secular humanists believe secular humanism unites all people. When was the last time you saw a devout Baptist or Muslim being united with secular humanism?

@skado If you'd read my comment to the end you'd have realised that you just validated my point. I've even given you a 'like' by way of thanks. 🙂

@Gareth
Do you not consider religious people to be people? You said secular humanism unites all people. Did you mean all non-religious people? Religious people comprise approximately 80% of the human population. It is not secular humanism that unites them.

@skado Does the sentence "All people benefit from a good night's sleep" mean that insomniacs aren't people? That's not how the English language works. Your point is equivalent to pointing out that people who don't get a good night's sleep don't benefit from a good night's sleep. Brilliant.

@Gareth
In this comparison, having the ability to sleep is the norm - insomnia the exception, which is the reverse of what we are discussing. In the world, religious belief is the norm - secular humanism the exception.

Biologically and psychologically, especially from an evolutionary perspective, religion's main function has been to promote social cohesion. That is to say, to unite all people. Of course this means all people who find themselves in a given culture. What you see as religious division is the effect of the various cultures growing to the point of touching each other and intermingling. In other words, globalism.

It is science, I believe, rather than secular humanism, that has some potential for uniting these various cultures. The only purpose I can see in secular humanism is to distinguish itself from the majority - in other words, to divide yet again. The fact that a minority of humans can behave well in a secular humanist atmosphere is no indication that a majority will ever be able to. The value of religion is not that it is true, but that it works. It has been tested and refined by evolution to produce social cohesion. The next viable step, it seems to me, is not to abandon what has worked for all of human history and adopt something that has never worked for any whole culture. But rather to allow religion to do what is has always done, which is to evolve to meet the changing needs of human populations.

In our current situation that would mean evolving a global religion. And I can think of no better backbone for that religion than a universal acknowledgement of the dependence on science for the 'what' of reality. But religion also needs to provide, as it always has, a 'how' of living life - a project that science has always, and probably must always eschew.

Science make technology possible. Art makes humanity possible. We are not robots. Yet.

2

Why would anyone be here reading posts if they were wondering if there is an "It" out there. I am here because there is not. Move on !!!

Did you notice the name of the site?

2

Show evidence for it, if can't, then stfu!

2

No “if” about it. There is obviously something out there.

And, whatever “it” is… it is the source of our existence. We didn’t invent the universe - it invented us.

Most major world religions caution against becoming overly confident that we know God’s nature. Most major world scientists caution against thinking we know everything about the nature of reality.

Whether we call it God or Physics, it made us - not the other way around, and we are not currently, or likely ever, capable of fully knowing its nature.

skado Level 9 Nov 27, 2022

"Most major world religions caution against becoming overly confident that we know God’s nature."

That is not true, the whole point of religion is the claim to know something, religions which made real relativist statements would cease to exists as religions, and become at most deism. At best most religions are only warning against the personal search for truth, in case it presents a challenge to their dogma.

@skado Absolutely something out there? I disagree. There is NOTHING supernatural if that's what you're claiming. There is ZERO planned purpose. Everything in the universe happens in it's own and by random.

@barjoe
Neither I nor the OP mentioned anything about “supernatural”. That is something you brought to the discussion, so I’ll let you take responsibility for that. How many hundred times have you seen me say I don’t believe in anything supernatural? How many more times will it take for you to believe me?

@skado @skado I don't think I've read hundreds of any of your comments ever. That being said, how else is anybody supposed to interpret "No “if” about it. There is obviously something out there."? In a thread for a post where the OP. mentions 'God' with a capital 'G'. I contend in spite of the site being called agnostic it's predominantly an atheist community. If I read your comment wrong, I stand corrected. You're entitled to your belief as I'm entitled to my unadulterated non belief. It's all good.

@barjoe
“…how else is anybody supposed to interpret "No “if” about it. There is obviously something out there."?”

Maybe scientifically?

@skado It's certainly not 'God'.

@barjoe
It's certainly not any word we can say. The map is not the territory. The universe behaves how it will, whether we call it God or Nature or Peanutbutter Pizza. There is a lot more "out there" that we don't know about than what we do know about. There is, by any popular or scientific definition "something" out there. Most of it unknown to us.

@skado Yeah. Lots of stuff. We are insignificant. Just a mere speck on a speck.

@barjoe

Exactly that.

2
1

We may be the only example of a part of the universe knowing itself (and seeking to know more), but I doubt it. It's a big, old universe. I bet intelligent life has evolved on other planets as well. As for the existence of a master Creator, there is no evidence of that. In fact, everywhere we look, we see only natural causes; no need to invoke supernatural intervention. What came before the Big Bang is not yet known, and may never be known, but even that state of ignorance is not a reason to believe in a Creator.

What there is evidence to support is that Humans have a capacity for metaphorical thinking and communicating.

@skado Oh hell yeah!

1

Giving it a name, is what religion is all about. Since religions are in the business of selling the idea that they have private knowledge of "IT, which has to be different from all the others, because without a difference between the models they have nothing to sell . And in giving that name, if there is an "It", then they all take a step away from "It", towards a false "It" of their own making.

1

Welcome to AgnosticDotCom!

skado Level 9 Nov 27, 2022
1

Quite simply there are
4,000 religions world wide.
And zero proof of said beliefs. I personally am glad there is a divide.
As a youngster I was told there was a tooth fairy , santa Claus, and God.
I refuse to dedidicate energy to something someone else is happy to believe- without significant PROOF
( INCLUDING AN alternate force OR
guiding power ).
Respectfully
PS
You can follow any precept
but we CAN NOT tell each other what
to believe.

@BBJong 4000 religions are all bullshit. If someone chooses to believe that bullshit it's their problem.

1

Divisions are manufactured by people who put their version of (whatever) above others. Religion may have brought ancient people together but the more people under one umbrella the less they have in common.

0

I call it: nature.

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