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Old 30th December 2019, 02:53 PM   #1
Thor 2
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When Does Religion Become Just Silly?

I can accept the notion of a god, however you define it, as being involved in creation. I don't entirely discount the possibility what's more, although I think it most unlikely.

The notion of a caring god, who takes great interest in our activities, I find much harder to accept. This not only because the god seemingly prefers not to intervene in our favour, and keeps itself invisible, but because the purpose behind our creation eludes me.

When we progress to the notion of a god who creates perfect beings, (angels and us), who then turn out to be not perfect, (which is somehow there own fault), then you've lost me altogether.

So then we go still further, to notions of a place of eternal torment, where hapless souls suffer for eternity, just because they don't believe in the the secretive god.

I mean it just gets sillier and sillier.

I think that Ame Perdue said it best in the New Rubaiyat:

"But still I hear the Wrangling Sects proclaim
Their Paradises and their Seas of Flame,
Their Holy Ghosts and mystic Trinities.
With no degree of Intellectual Shame."

Yes "Intellectual Shame" is what's missing.
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Old 30th December 2019, 10:58 PM   #2
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Correct. Accept the illogical for a hope of something greater than raw reality.

Find a leader when you cannot find your own way through life seems to be a popular choice too.
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Old 31st December 2019, 01:22 AM   #3
Roger Ramjets
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
I can accept the notion of a god, however you define it, as being involved in creation. I don't entirely discount the possibility what's more, although I think it most unlikely.

The notion of a caring god, who takes great interest in our activities, I find much harder to accept.
If you can accept a God, why not a caring God?

Accepting the notion of a God at all is by far the biggest hurdle. The rest is easy. This God will of course have human characteristics, including a desire to take an interest in and 'care' about other beings, just like we do. If it didn't then how could it be differentiated from an uncaring universe?

Quote:
This not only because the god seemingly prefers not to intervene in our favour, and keeps itself invisible, but because the purpose behind our creation eludes me.
The reason God doesn't intervene in our favor is blindingly obvious, but if we are to accept the notion of a God then we have to discount the obvious. Once we do there are plenty of reasons that make sense.

To start off with, how you define 'favor'? If there is a Heaven waiting for us then wouldn't the best 'favor' a caring God could do for us is hasten our arrival there? Yet many people might find that idea a bit disturbing.

And what to do when one person's wishes impinge upon another's? Better to intervene as little as possible so people have the freedom to make their own way in the world, rather than relying on supernatural handouts.

As for the purpose of it all, just because it eludes you doesn't mean there isn't one. I bet there are a million things you don't know the purpose of, yet you don't deny that they exist.

Quote:
When we progress to the notion of a god who creates perfect beings, (angels and us), who then turn out to be not perfect, (which is somehow there own fault), then you've lost me altogether.
The Bible says that man was created 'in the image of God'. But just like a photocopy is a not a perfect duplicate of the original, we a not a perfect image of God. In fact the idea that we would be is silly.

As for the angels, if they are lesser than God then they cannot be as wise, and therefore may be be subject to errors of judgement just like us. And again, nowhere in the Bible does it say that the angels were created perfect.

But how does that square with the notion of a perfect god? Surely if God is perfect then He cannot create anything but perfection? But who gets to define perfection? Certainly not us. One thing is for sure though. If the Bible is correct then God created angels with independent minds, and since those minds are lesser than God's they must be less capable of avoiding error. This is simple logic, and to think otherwise would be silly.

Quote:
So then we go still further, to notions of a place of eternal torment, where hapless souls suffer for eternity, just because they don't believe in the the secretive god.
According to the Christian Bible unrepentant sinners are sent to Hell to be destroyed, so it is a place of (almost) eternal torment. But the torment is of their own making, as they contemplate their crimes while being forever separated from God. It is this separation and knowledge of their unavoidable destruction that torments them.

This concept should not be foreign to you - after all we do it to people on Death Row. We don't torment them either, but they are still tormented.

Quote:
I mean it just gets sillier and sillier.
Does it? Or is it all just the logical extension of accepting the notion of a God in the first place?

A non-caring God without a consciousness like ours might as well be a rock (or whatever scientists think was the origin of the 'Big Bang'). If it created everything 'perfect' then we would not exist as independent minds free to make our own decisions (and mistakes). A caring God would not torment us by letting those who sinned against us go unpunished. This is all perfectly logical once you accept the notion of a God.

Different religions have different ideas, some of which are a bit wacky. But the concepts that have evolved in major religions mostly have good reasons for being there. Take the 'God' bits out of the Bible for example, and it is full of practical advice, cautionary tales and sensible laws that have served our civilization for centuries - as well as being a good read for historical fantasy buffs.
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Old 31st December 2019, 02:53 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
The notion of a caring god, who takes great interest in our activities, I find much harder to accept. This not only because the god seemingly prefers not to intervene in our favour, and keeps itself invisible, but because the purpose behind our creation eludes me.

When we progress to the notion of a god who creates perfect beings, (angels and us), who then turn out to be not perfect, (which is somehow there own fault), then you've lost me altogether.
The Logical Problem of Evil explores the concept of God and Evil in great depth from a logical view point.

One line of reasoning goes like this: God created humans to have free will (not controllable by God otherwise they would just be bots). If this is true then
- Humans must have the ability to make evil choices.
- Humans must have the opportunity to make evil choices.
- Humans must have the temptation to make evil choices.

This is not proof of anything. It is just an alternative to the bible.
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Old 31st December 2019, 03:50 AM   #5
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Must remember those that believe in God have major issues. They need a security blanket, so they use God as one. The rest does not matter.
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Old 31st December 2019, 04:09 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
If you can accept a God, why not a caring God?
Because now one would find oneself in the position of claiming attributes for an entity that one has failed to demonstrate.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Accepting the notion of a God at all is by far the biggest hurdle.
A hurdle which has never been surmounted by anyone, ever.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
The rest is easy.
Of course it is. Making up fictional attributes for a fictional entity is trivial. That is why fiction exists.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
This God will of course have human characteristics,
Why should it? Exactly how did you determine which characteristics this "god" may or may not have? Just how limited and weak is this "god" you propose?

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
including a desire to take an interest in and 'care' about other beings, just like we do.
The claimed god/s are not human at all. None of them. Why should any of them have human characteristics?

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
If it didn't then how could it be differentiated from an uncaring universe?
Quite easily.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
The reason God doesn't intervene in our favor is blindingly obvious,
Is it? Then why do billions of god-botherers believe the exact opposite?
Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
but if we are to accept the notion of a God then we have to discount the obvious. Once we do there are plenty of reasons that make sense.
Sure. We can simply make them up out of convenience. Lucky us.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
To start off with, how you define 'favor'? If there is a Heaven waiting for us then wouldn't the best 'favor' a caring God could do for us is hasten our arrival there? Yet many people might find that idea a bit disturbing.
Correct, which gave rise to Andrea yates, Jim Jones, Heavens Gate and so on.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
And what to do when one person's wishes impinge upon another's? Better to intervene as little as possible so people have the freedom to make their own way in the world, rather than relying on supernatural handouts.
Then you have a problem because that makes your caring god totally uncaring.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
As for the purpose of it all, just because it eludes you doesn't mean there isn't one.
Either you are claiming that YOU know what that purpose is, in which case you must demonstrate it. Or you don't know either, in which case it is useless o claim that there might be some purpose, maybe, somehow.
Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
I bet there are a million things you don't know the purpose of, yet you don't deny that they exist.
Because those can be demonstrated to exist. A test god fails every time.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
The Bible says that man was created 'in the image of God'. But just like a photocopy is a not a perfect duplicate of the original, we a not a perfect image of God. In fact the idea that we would be is silly.
How did you determine the limitations of gods power?

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
As for the angels, if they are lesser than God then they cannot be as wise, and therefore may be be subject to errors of judgement just like us. And again, nowhere in the Bible does it say that the angels were created perfect.
Kindly demonstrate the existence of "angels". Until you do so, all you have is fan fiction created out of whole cloth.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
But how does that square with the notion of a perfect god? Surely if God is perfect then He cannot create anything but perfection?
He could be a total bastard. You have no way to tell.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
But who gets to define perfection? Certainly not us.
Yet here you are defining it.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
One thing is for sure though. If the Bible is correct then God created angels with independent minds, and since those minds are lesser than God's they must be less capable of avoiding error.
Faulty premises lead to faulty conclusions. Syllogistic logic 101.
Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
This is simple logic, and to think otherwise would be silly.
Stick in false premises, get out faulty conclusions. Again syllogistic logic 101.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
According to the Christian Bible unrepentant sinners are sent to Hell to be destroyed, so it is a place of (almost) eternal torment.
Nope.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
But the torment is of their own making, as they contemplate their crimes while being forever separated from God.
Nope.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
It is this separation and knowledge of their unavoidable destruction that torments them.
Nope.
All of that is tacked on post hoc rationalisation.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
This concept should not be foreign to you - after all we do it to people on Death Row. We don't torment them either, but they are still tormented.
Which is why most of the rest of us have got rid of the death penalty. It is religion that provokes the US to retain it.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Does it? Or is it all just the logical extension of accepting the notion of a God in the first place?
Sure. Accept the magic sky fairy. Then you can simply make up whatever you want.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
A non-caring God without a consciousness like ours might as well be a rock (or whatever scientists think was the origin of the 'Big Bang').
Who are you to place limitations and constraints on the consciousness of "god"?

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
If it created everything 'perfect' then we would not exist as independent minds free to make our own decisions (and mistakes). A caring God would not torment us by letting those who sinned against us go unpunished. This is all perfectly logical once you accept the notion of a God.
So your caring god doesn't care about some people.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Different religions have different ideas, some all of which are a bit wacky.
FTFY.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
But the concepts that have evolved in major religions mostly have good reasons for being there.
Yup. Accumulation of secular power.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Take the 'God' bits out of the Bible for example, and it is full of practical advice, cautionary tales and sensible laws that have served our civilization for centuries
Really? Don't eat shellfish? Bats are birds? Snakes and donkeys can talk? Don't wear clothing of mixed fibres? Slavery is morally fine? Rape victims must marry their attacker? Incest is a good thing? Genocide is OK? Human sacrifice is a good thing?
Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
- as well as being a good read for historical fantasy buffs.
Fantasy being the operative word.
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Old 31st December 2019, 04:37 AM   #7
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Aside from the myriad other problems with any god-concept, I couldn't believe in any god that is universal and takes a special interest in humanity. The universe is too big, a scientist doesn't study a microbe by putting it in Lake Eyrie.
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Old 31st December 2019, 04:51 AM   #8
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Both Scientology and Mormonism are supremely silly, yet very successful in their own way.
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:04 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
The Logical Problem of Evil explores the concept of God and Evil in great depth from a logical view point.



One line of reasoning goes like this: God created humans to have free will (not controllable by God otherwise they would just be bots). If this is true then

- Humans must have the ability to make evil choices.

- Humans must have the opportunity to make evil choices.

- Humans must have the temptation to make evil choices.



This is not proof of anything. It is just an alternative to the bible.
Of course that fails for the abrahamic religions as their god did create people that did not know good nor evil, in other words their god created automata to praise their creator.
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:04 AM   #10
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I have had an interesting look into the minds of believers over the last 5 weeks or so. Long story short, I finally realized I had a drinking problem and, despite the fact that it's a spiritual group, I went to Alcoholics Anonymous. I actually like the fellowship, so to speak. But the God thing is a bridge too far. I think I'm just too logical. God is going to help me stay sober, right? Meanwhile, ten minutes ago some 6 year old kid just got kidnapped, raped, and killed. My feeble mind simply cannot reconcile these two ideas.

They even try to cover their tracks by telling you that you can "believe in god however you see fit" or something like that. And maybe it's different in other areas, but out of the 30 some odd people at the group I attend, every last one of them is a Christian. Sure, I hear stories of how others showed up agnostic, there's even a chapter in the Big Book, "We the Agnostics." But at the end of the day, you have to give yourself over to this higher power or, I'm told, you can't stop drinking.

Like I said, the fellowship is great. I DO benefit from hearing others talk about their successes and failures in sobriety. But that higher power stuff, it just makes me cringe. What next? Santa Claus is going to leave me sobriety under the Christmas Tree?
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:12 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Both Scientology and Mormonism are supremely silly, yet very successful in their own way.
The only reason we don't view the abrahamic religions as equally silly as all the other religions is simply familiarity.
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:16 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Of course that fails for the abrahamic religions as their god did create people that did not know good nor evil, in other words their god created automata to praise their creator.
I would have thought that the fruit from the tree that gives knowledge of good and evil fitted that theory like a glove.
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:44 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Both Scientology and Mormonism are supremely silly, yet very successful in their own way.
Same with catholicism. If in doubt, visit the relic wing of a well-stocked medieval cathedral treasury.
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Old 31st December 2019, 06:59 AM   #14
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I always wondered why a God with the characteristics we commonly give such a being... Omniscience, Omnipotence, etc....
Would bother to create anything?
What would be the point?

Such a being could envision literally anything, and effortlessly bring it into existence with an act of will, and further understand it’s creation’s ultimate destiny down to the last subatomic particle.
So why bother?
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Old 31st December 2019, 07:08 AM   #15
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Personally I just can’t square all the judgement over normal things. I imagine if I had created cats and then wanted them to think they needed my forgiveness for doing things like lazing about and licking themselves and torturing mice, or else risk eternal damnation. Like even if I didn’t like the mouse thing that’s on me, I made predator practice a vital part of being a cat 99% of the time.

In short, suffering seems to be an accident of competitive life, and competitive life, if you wanted to find a purpose for it, seems to be for creating variety. So if I posit a god, I am left assuming it wanted variety and couldn’t or didn’t care to find a way to achieve that without suffering.

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Old 31st December 2019, 07:48 AM   #16
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(Coffee is on)

I guess part of my trouble with many of our religions is they’re far too human centric. I look at the world and if I guess at what a creator would want out of the conditions set, it’s definitely variety in general and not humans in particular, though we’d probably be appreciated for driving a whole bunch of attendant variety.

I think a few people have said before that if humans are the point, it’s kind of odd that a whole heck of a lot of time and space doesn’t have any. Even if we’re supposed to be here to appreciate it all, you’ve got what, a century of popularly accessible naturalism? And only for the bits on our own environs that we can point cameras, telescopes and probes at?

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Old 31st December 2019, 07:54 AM   #17
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Of course, even to engage in this discussion one must first dismiss as trivial the social aspects of religion, the labor-forming effects of collaboration, and all the other evolutionary advantages it brought the species.
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Old 31st December 2019, 08:18 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Lithrael View Post
Personally I just canít square all the judgement over normal things. I imagine if I had created cats and then wanted them to think they needed my forgiveness for doing things like lazing about and licking themselves and torturing mice, or else risk eternal damnation. Like even if I didnít like the mouse thing thatís on me, I made predator practice a vital part of being a cat 99% of the time waking hours.
Fixed. Huge difference.
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Old 31st December 2019, 09:25 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
I would have thought that the fruit from the tree that gives knowledge of good and evil fitted that theory like a glove.
Nope. We were not meant to eat that.
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Old 31st December 2019, 09:26 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
Of course, even to engage in this discussion one must first dismiss as trivial the social aspects of religion, the labor-forming effects of collaboration, and all the other evolutionary advantages it brought the species.
How well it works as a means to an end and how much of it is true are two different discussions. Itís certainly possible to use it to successfully bolster social cohesion and adherence to rules etc.

I mean, itís great if itís helping my local chunk of the world to agree to help the king run the country smoothly but Iím still going to be annoyed when I get set on fire for saying it sounds made up.

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Old 31st December 2019, 09:28 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Both Scientology and Mormonism are supremely silly, yet very successful in their own way.
Scientology and Mormonism are just newer, so they seem sillier.

Magic hat viewing rocks and alien volcano DC-10 ghosts are no crazier then talking Apple tempting snakes, they just haven't saturated our collective conscious as much.

All religions would sound more or less equally absurd if you were hearing them for the first time.
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Old 31st December 2019, 10:00 AM   #22
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One way out of the Christian conundrum is the notion of a finite god, that is, a god who can't do everything. Maybe even a god who could use our help!

Of course, the idea isn't supported by scripture, which seems to go for making god bigger and even more infinite* all the time. So it would surely be rejected by all abrahamic believers, not just christians.

And yet, the religions of auld lang syne appear to have featured nothing but finite deities, specialized gods who obviously couldn't all, or any of them, be infinite in power. And people were content with that, and muddled along happily (or not) in crowded polytheism, while exercising considerable tolerance toward other's choice of cult.

Something about that finite god notion appeals to me. Not enough to believe in it, natch, but, well, it's my sentimental fave.

*Holy Evangelist, Batman! That's the gospel according to Buzz Lightyear!
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Old 31st December 2019, 10:06 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Nope. We were not meant to eat that.
Exactly. Without that tree there would have been no opportunity to make a bad choice and free will would have been moot.
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Old 31st December 2019, 10:12 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Exactly. Without that tree there would have been no opportunity to make a bad choice and free will would have been moot.
Unless the tree was there specifically as a test. Of course, since Adam & Eve were supposedly immortal at this point what you have is a test where the only end condition is failure, with punishment for that failure. So kinda sadistic.
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Old 31st December 2019, 10:14 AM   #25
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Old 31st December 2019, 10:31 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Really? Don't eat shellfish? Bats are birds? Snakes and donkeys can talk? Don't wear clothing of mixed fibres? Slavery is morally fine? Rape victims must marry their attacker? Incest is a good thing? Genocide is OK? Human sacrifice is a good thing?
Shellfish is a pretty bad idea if there's no refrigeration. The word "bird" is just a word to describe animals that can fly and are not insects. Umm....yeah, the donkey and snake thing....well, the idea of miracles in general can save people from despair in a world where it is not uncommon for your children to die with little or no warning. Despair might be the most realistic option available, but it isn't the most useful ...And on and on.

The Bible, Judaism/Islam/Christianity worked. The practitioners of the Abrahamic faiths spread, because those faiths provided something to bronze age and medieval minds. They were useful.


I think sometimes people of our age don't really grasp just how incredibly different the world was before contraception and antibiotics.


That being said, keeping to the words of a bronze age book today is just daft, and, even more directly to the OP, yes, sometimes it does get just silly, and specifically in the case of Christianity it goes beyond silly to the bizarre. It's hard to believe that for 2,000 years it was the biggest thing in Europe. God sends down his child (what does that even mean?) to make up for distant ancestors eating fruit is a bit nutty. And yet, if I search my memories, I can recall a time when I thought it made sense.
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Old 31st December 2019, 11:52 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
I would have thought that the fruit from the tree that gives knowledge of good and evil [bad] fitted that theory like a glove.
Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Exactly. Without that tree there would have been no opportunity to make a bad choice and free will would have been moot.
If they had to eat from the tree before they could know what good or evil (bad) even are, how could they possibly make a bad choice before eating from the tree? (that’s a rhetorical question). Might as well punish babies with eternal torture for crapping in their nappies/diapers.
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Old 31st December 2019, 11:54 AM   #28
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Religions don’t become just silly, they all ARE just silly from the very beginning.
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Old 31st December 2019, 12:05 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by psionl0 View Post
Exactly. Without that tree there would have been no opportunity to make a bad choice and free will would have been moot.
Exactly! God supposedly created evil before creating Adam and Eve and commanded Adam and Eve to not eat the fruit (why create the fruit at all is another puzzle, right?).

So in the absence of knowledge of good and evil Adam and Eve having the free will to choose between them would be moot.
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Old 31st December 2019, 12:08 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer View Post
Unless the tree was there specifically as a test. Of course, since Adam & Eve were supposedly immortal at this point what you have is a test where the only end condition is failure, with punishment for that failure. So kinda sadistic.
Even worse: a test of naive subjects with no prior understanding that it would be bad to eat of the fruit. What was the point of God commanding them to not eat of the fruit if they did not understand that going against his command was "bad."
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Old 31st December 2019, 12:09 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
Of course, even to engage in this discussion one must first dismiss as trivial the social aspects of religion, the labor-forming effects of collaboration, and all the other evolutionary advantages it brought the species.
What you claim are the "social aspects of religion" are merely the social aspects of humans. There's nothing good done by religions that can't be done and isn't done without religion (and all it's stupid and harmful baggage).

Riding horses was once very common, might as well claim that one must first dismiss as trivial the social aspects of riding horses, the labor-forming effects of collaboration, and all the other evolutionary advantages it brought the species.
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Old 31st December 2019, 12:13 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
Religions donít become just silly, they all ARE just silly from the very beginning.
^This.

I've always liked the statement that most believers reject all other religions than their one; atheists just add one additional religion to the believer's rejection list.
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Old 31st December 2019, 12:16 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
Of course, even to engage in this discussion one must first dismiss as trivial the social aspects of religion, the labor-forming effects of collaboration, and all the other evolutionary advantages it brought the species.
The OP focuses on the paranormal aspects of religion. The elements you cite are societal, are unrelated to the truth of of the paranormal aspects, and I submit belong in a different discussion. Notably many different religions propose very different paranormal dogmas yet nonetheless fully serve the social aspects of religion you site.
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Old 31st December 2019, 01:08 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
^This.

I've always liked the statement that most believers reject all other religions than their one; atheists just add one additional religion to the believer's rejection list.
That's why I bristle whenever Scientology and Mormonism get dismissed with "Well obviously those two are silly."

No... they really aren't. Not comparatively. They are about average. They are just newer.

And yes this does work both ways. All you horoscope wearing, "Oh I'm not religious... i'M sPIrITuAL!" salt of the Earth hippies are held to the same rules.
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Old 31st December 2019, 01:24 PM   #35
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It's always been silly
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Old 31st December 2019, 01:51 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
Exactly! God supposedly created evil before creating Adam and Eve and commanded Adam and Eve to not eat the fruit (why create the fruit at all is another puzzle, right?).

So in the absence of knowledge of good and evil Adam and Eve having the free will to choose between them would be moot.
Correct. Adam and Eve didn't know it was wrong to eat from that tree until after they had eaten from it. Original sin is moot as it can only be an intentional act of the deity to curse them no matter what.

Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
Even worse: a test of naive subjects with no prior understanding that it would be bad to eat of the fruit. What was the point of God commanding them to not eat of the fruit if they did not understand that going against his command was "bad."
Because it provides a framework for a priesthood to gain power over others. Command everyone to be sick, then hold out the lure of a cure. For the sickness you made up in the first place.
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Old 31st December 2019, 03:10 PM   #37
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I think that abaddon did a good job in answering the following so will just confine myself to responding to the sillier bits.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
If you can accept a God, why not a caring God?

Accepting the notion of a God at all is by far the biggest hurdle. The rest is easy. This God will of course have human characteristics, including a desire to take an interest in and 'care' about other beings, just like we do. If it didn't then how could it be differentiated from an uncaring universe?
Well I think I answered the question of why not a caring god with my comment about it not interfering when all kinds of nasty stuff is happening. A bolt of lightening or two zapping child molesting priests would be a good start.

Quote:
The reason God doesn't intervene in our favor is blindingly obvious, but if we are to accept the notion of a God then we have to discount the obvious. Once we do there are plenty of reasons that make sense.

To start off with, how you define 'favor'? If there is a Heaven waiting for us then wouldn't the best 'favor' a caring God could do for us is hasten our arrival there? Yet many people might find that idea a bit disturbing.
This is a bit of a jumble but here goes.

The Abrahamic god of the OT did lots of intervening but grew tired of it it seems. He did chat directly with some people using props like burning bushes and such also. He stopped doing this also, (some who hear voices in their heads my dispute this), good while ago. If the god you are referring to is this one then the "blindingly obvious" is now but not then?


Quote:
As for the purpose of it all, just because it eludes you doesn't mean there isn't one. I bet there are a million things you don't know the purpose of, yet you don't deny that they exist.
It's obvious our minds work somewhat differently.

I don't look for a purpose for every phenomena I come across. This would be nonsensical for me given I think all phenomena just happened and wasn't made by a god. If you start off with the assumption that God did it it's reasonable to look for a purpose. So asking what purpose the god of Abraham had in creating man is a reasonable question. Any answer?

Quote:
The Bible says that man was created 'in the image of God'. But just like a photocopy is a not a perfect duplicate of the original, we a not a perfect image of God. In fact the idea that we would be is silly.

As for the angels, if they are lesser than God then they cannot be as wise, and therefore may be be subject to errors of judgement just like us. And again, nowhere in the Bible does it say that the angels were created perfect.
So we were made in Gods image but not a perfect copy?

I suppose the many failings of the human physical body would not look good on God so there would be one exception. I have heard it said we are made spiritually in His image but I have some difficulty with this notion. Our spiritual replication was flawed in the decision making process perhaps? You know by eating the apple - mainly Eve's fault of course.

Quote:
But how does that square with the notion of a perfect god? Surely if God is perfect then He cannot create anything but perfection? But who gets to define perfection? Certainly not us. One thing is for sure though. If the Bible is correct then God created angels with independent minds, and since those minds are lesser than God's they must be less capable of avoiding error. This is simple logic, and to think otherwise would be silly.
I'm glad you're comfortable with this roundabout reasoning.

Quote:
According to the Christian Bible unrepentant sinners are sent to Hell to be destroyed, so it is a place of (almost) eternal torment. But the torment is of their own making, as they contemplate their crimes while being forever separated from God. It is this separation and knowledge of their unavoidable destruction that torments them.
Almost eternal now then.

But their crimes will be forgiven if they just believe in Jesus! Wow yes, just like that! Mind you if your geographical location has stopped you from learning about Jesus, or your God given spiritual mind cannot accept this truth, you're stuffed.

Quote:

Snip.

.
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Old 31st December 2019, 03:30 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Of course that fails for the abrahamic religions as their god did create people that did not know good nor evil, in other words their god created automata to praise their creator.

Yes that is a curly one that is.

People who did not know good and evil but did the evil thing that made them aware of good and evil. Isn't it good we have inspired theologians to make sense of this stuff for us.

That praising the creator idea is what occurs to me as the reason for mans creation. God gets off on having lots and lots of people praising Him eternally - or almost eternally Roger? Can't make them perfect enough from scratch, in spite of his omnipotence, so has to test them out in this world to see if they make the grade. Pity about the collateral damage.
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Old 31st December 2019, 04:01 PM   #39
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Silly God really can't get much right. After creating the Universe and looking on His work and "seeing it was very good" has to start over by drowning every living thing (almost) shortly thereafter.
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Old 31st December 2019, 04:03 PM   #40
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