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  1. Thagryn-Sylrand
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    Thagryn-Sylrand Senior Member

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    The God Question

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Thagryn-Sylrand, Nov 4, 2008.

    There are many mysteries surrounding this topic and lately I have been having a hard time to believe. I went through a period in my life where I had no personal answers and desperately I researched to find the answer. This led me into many different spiritual paths which always led to my disappointment. All of the belief systems out there didn't perfectly line up with what I thought deep down to be true. I didn't want to shrug and say "So I don't believe this, it doesn't matter I'll still be christian" or anything similar. For a while I was agnostic; I believed what I thought was right for me. Then I started exploring deeper questions which even could not be answered in my own belief set. Now I am athiest.

    I know it may be personal but if not, I would be interested to hear what you would have to say on the topic. I do not wish for an argument to happen, just a discussion where everyone has a say and everyone respects what you have to say. Thanks you for your time.
     
  2. Rem Nightfall
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    Rem Nightfall Banned

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    'Ello, hope I answer your question or give you at least abit to talk about. I do not believe in God or any other religious belief. I belive in my morals of what I think is wrong and what I think is right. With a religion like Christianity, they teach faith by fear. And I do not want to be afraid of the world. I want to explore the world. I do not want to be shackled down by something I have to believe in. A man has one truth faith and that faith is to himself, not God or any other higher power.
    Hope that is what you were looking for.

    Here and Now
    ~Rem Nightfall
     
  3. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    I'm instigating a zero-tolerence policy here. Any flaming, argumentative behaviour, or discriminatory comments by anyone and you will be infracted, and this thread will be closed. I still haven't gotten rid of the memories of the last religion thread.

    Anyway, play nice kiddies.
     
  4. Acglaphotis
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    Acglaphotis Contributing Member

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    Edit: Nothing here : p.
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    As with every thread dealing with controversial subjects, this one will be closely watched. As long as everyone remains respectful toward everyone else's beliefs, the thread may continue.

    FAIR WARNING! In the past, we have simply closed the thread when it gets too heated. This time, whoever takes it to the point that requires it to be closed will also be subject to an infraction.

    We have had a very poor track record with religion-based threrads in the past, and this is why we will follow a zero-tolerance policy on this one.

    So please keep the tone respectful at all times.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Acglaphotis: When this thread dies down, it will probably be closed to keep it from flaring up at a later time. You may not be able to edit your post after that.
     
  7. Thagryn-Sylrand
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    Thagryn-Sylrand Senior Member

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    I didn't want to start a religious fight in the first place, I am just curious about people's beliefs. Sorry if it looked that way.
     
  8. Forkfoot
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    Forkfoot Contributing Member Contributor

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    I happen to be Catholic, but I've always had a great fondness for Buddhism. Buddha basically said, Okay, I've resolved the meaning of life, and here's how you can do it too, but don't you dare take my word for it. Try it! Go see for yourself!
     
  9. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    That's fair enough. Sometimes we get the members's that take the religion thing to far. We're not opposed to these threads topics but we just want them kept clean of flame and arrogance and insult.







    ~Raven.
    Senior Super Moderator.
     
  10. Acglaphotis
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    Acglaphotis Contributing Member

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    Well, that's not ideal : /. If you happen to be the one locking it up could you delete my post before you do so?
     
  11. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    I don't like being a philosopher, but unfortunately I think like a philosopher, which led me to becomming agnostic, not that I identified myself with any other beliefs in the first place. In my opinion, other than being a "faith", I see probably all religions to be moral guidelines with the addition of tales to illustrate those guidelines.
     
  12. Silver Random
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    Silver Random Senior Member

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    This thread might be locked :confused: Then again, maybe not if i dont post here. Either way, i am torn in my religious beliefs between the Flying Spaghetti Monster and the Invisible Pink Unicorn.

    ...
    :D

    But in seriousness i believe there is no God. Many reasons, which i won't bother going into since people tend to argue if i post reasons rather than just make a statement, and i am the type that will reply ;\
     
  13. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    I really doubt that I'll remember. I have far too many thread issues to deal with to remember individual post issues that aren't right in front of my face.

    Sorry.
     
  14. Acglaphotis
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    Acglaphotis Contributing Member

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    Oh, well, don't worry then. I'll edit it when it's inactive maybe I'll catch it before you guys lock it : ).
     
  15. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    I believe in God.
     
  16. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    Hey folks if you all wanna debate locking threads perhaps you should open another topic on locking threads.

    Gentle hint.;) Topic folk's but calmly and in a well manner response to others posts.
     
  17. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I also come from a culture where the words of the church have permeated and remain in the lexicon of everyday speech. When I question the use of these terms (like bendición as a greeting to elders) I am usually told, “Oh, those things are just cultural. No on means anything religious by it.” To which I usually reply, “Oh, then no one will mind if I don't say that as my greeting, right? I can just say, 'Good Morning,' or, 'How do you do?' instead, right?” To which the reply usually is, “Oh, no, you have to say it. It would be disrespectful otherwise. Even if you don’t believe in that stuff, you have to say it.”

    *brain enters into logic freeze*

    There is a strange need to hide the fact that perhaps words like that might not be acceptable or comfortable to me, which I find painfully hypocritical (of me, on my part) when I find myself pressured into saying these religious things that I don’t believe in.
     
  18. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    Before my 20th birthday, I saw the ravages of war. One little boy I met in an orphanage took a shining to me and I looked after him...taught him to speak English and made sure he always got enough food. Horribly scarred, other children shunned him. His father had been chief of a small mountain village near the borders of Cambodia and Laos. The Viet Cong suspected the villagers of aiding Americans with intel on VC movements in the area - the villagers were not helping us, but the VC thought different. When the communists tried to get information out of the village chief, he had none to give and they didn't believe him, so they tortured his oldest son by cutting off his external ears, slitting his nostrils and cutting out that small section of meat from his nose to his lip.

    The village chief still could not provide information that he simply did not have, so the VC torched the village chief's home and threw the boy along with his family into the flames. The boy managed to break through the burning wall and run to safety in the nearby forest. His family perished. Eventually, the villagers found him and delivered the child to an American field hospital where his burns and cuts were treated. Then, like so many children of war, he found himself in an orphanage - in Saigon.

    Before meeting this child, I believed in Christianity, having been taught in the Congregational Church in Whitman, Massachusetts. I believed in God and I prayed, seeking help to understand war and my role in it. Despite my steadfast belief, I noticed there were NEVER any answers to my prayers. It's not like God gave me answers I did not like, I could have lived with that, but there were simply no responses...just a vacuum, a void. After praying about this small boy, I began to realize there might not be a God, so I gave up on divine help in exchange for another kind of help from "above". I made it my mission to gain some measure of "justice" for that little boy. I led my recon team on missions "over the fence" deep into enemy territory along the Ho Chi Minh trail, mostly in Cambodia, where we made them pay dearly. Sometimes I lost my hearing for a few days to a week after being close to an Arc Light or Rolling Thunder (heavy saturation bombing) that I called in on unsuspecting NVA. Vengeance gave me more peace of mind than did my prior religious beliefs.

    When I returned to the "world", I did not give up on religion, although I did give up on Christianity. I sought truth by studying Judaism, Buddhism and the BaHai Faith. They all lacked in the same way...no real evidence to support their religious convictions, only the same old mantra of needing blind faith. It became apparent to me that, while I dislike communism and socialism, Karl Marx was accurate in his description of religion as the "opiate of the masses". In history, more hatred and killing has been in the name of religions than perhaps any other single cause of violence. Even today, Islamic extremists kill in the name of God. I have concluded that religion is simply a tool for managing and manipulating people.

    So, after ample religious study and personal attempts to connect with "God", I have become content with atheism. In fact, I look at pictures of the universe...stars, galaxies, the vastness of space...and I appreciate the brief moment in time that is my existence. I need nothing more.
     
  19. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i'm an agnostic atheist, if that makes any sense... well, it makes some to me, anyway... one of my latest poems states my take on this god business pretty well:


    and this:

    and the bottom line:

     
  20. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    I really hate when people say this. It shows an absolute lack of historical study. In the list of most violent conflicts, you have to go all the way down to #11 to find one that has religion as a primary cause (The Thirty Years War, which was only religious for about seven of those years and then became political with religion as a proxy for armed conflict). In the list of genocides, you have to go down to #10 to find one with religion as it's motive (Ironically the persecution of Chinese Muslims).

    War and violent conflict stems from political and economic differences more than anything else, not religion.

    To answer the question, yes it's a faith thing, but I've seen what I would call evidence in my personal experience to make me think there's something out there looking out for me (Jesus, Buddha, Shiva, call um what you like I think there's something out there) and I choose to believe in that and have picked one to believe as the one I see in my life.

    PS: Religion is only the opiate of the masses when government turns it into such (Which is what Marx was referring too). Otherwise it's just another force people choose to give power over their lives.
     
  21. ValianceInEnd
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    ValianceInEnd Active Member

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    A believe in God as a moral compass for people, something that gives substance to their lives. I think it's a good thing to follow christian ideals, because without morals or hopes of a rewarded life after death, what do we have?
     
  22. Acglaphotis
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    Acglaphotis Contributing Member

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    Religion isn't necessary to have morals; society imposes them on you easily enough.

    If you have nothing else than the hope that there is life after death, you are living to die. To me, the fact that I didn't exist for millions of years, will only exist for a brief amount of time and then will never exist again is actually an encouragement to live.

    You never get the chance to live again, so we must enjoy it.

    /Nietzsche
     
  23. Carmina
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    Carmina Contributing Member Contributor

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    For me, there is a difference between spirituality and religion. I have always been a spiritual person. At times I have been a religious person. I grew up catholic and attended Catholic school for 13 years. That was a lot of indoctination into the specific beliefs and dogma of that religion. I was taught that CAtholicism was the one right way, and everyone else was wrong. I was taught to believe and not to question. When I did question or disagree, I was told by the nuns that I was sinning for disagreeing and sinning again if I disobeyed the teachings because of personal belief.

    It wasn't until college that I really met people who believed differently. I met Muslims, and atheists, and Buddhists, and all sorts of people. I found that the questions I had been unable to ask before were still a part of me. I questioned Catholicism and rejected it. I still believed in God, but considered myself agnostic.

    Then, in one year, I lost my grandmother, my home, a long term relationship, job, and graduated college with no idea what I wanted to do with my life. On Christmas Eve, I attended worship at the local United Methodist Church. My auntie (with whom I was living at the time) was singing. She came out with the choir with this joyful look on her face. Everyone around me had that look. They all believed. They had joy in their faith. I realized, I had no faith anymore. I had none of that joy that comes from believing. I spent the entire service in tears. I had lost God.

    Over a year later, when life had setteld down a bit. I opened my mind back to the posibility that there was a God. I joined the choir with my aunt. Music was the last place where I had felt spiritual and that church with the choir singing was where I had lost my faith. I figured that was the best place to start looking.

    It has been 4 years now. I am a member of United Methodist Church. I even work in the office. I am not steadfast in my faith. I don't believe this is the only or best system of belief. This is simply the best I have found for me. I still question. But it is ok to question. I would rather have a rocky faith full of questions and doubts, but where I actually think and reason, than have the faith of a child who blindly believes because that is what I was told.

    Spirituality is journey. Religion is a path. There are many paths. I encourage people to question what they are taught. To research other belief systems. It may lead to a better understanding and stronger faith in your own religion.

    My beliefs needn't be anyone else's. My husband is an atheist. One of my best friends is a pagan. Another is Catholic. There are many paths. I don't care which one someone takes.
     
  24. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    Recently, I have started attending Church actually.

    When I was younger, I used to go to Sunday school, but because my mam is like the anti christ, she wouldn't let me go any more. I felt as though my decision about religion had been made for me, and it wasn't until recently until I started to think about it again, give God some thought.

    I beleive there is a God, he created us, he watches us, and he loves us. However, he cannot help always; like a father he must let his children make their own choices. I beleive in free will ... our decisions are our own, and perhaps God has seen what we have done to one another over the years and sorta thought, screw 'em, they can sort themselves out it, as perhaps God isn't this perfect being, but something that has emotions too, who feels underappreciated also.

    All of this is me just throwing ideas around really, but I have recently realised I do beleive there is a God but that he isn't there to bail us out. He is just, there. I think,
     
  25. the norse atlantic saga
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    the norse atlantic saga Member

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    I believe religion is an important moral compass for people who would not otherwise fashion their own. I think it is an inherently good thing if used correctly...and a horrible thing if used incorrectly. it is about the individual and how they apply religion to their life.

    Personally, all I believe in is mathematics. Logic is by its very conception true, and that is the singular condition I require in order to believe something. I don't believe mathematics is fundamentally human-conceived either, like religion. It is an underlying grid that encompasses the entire natural world and, although it's largely misunderstood and undiscovered, we have been able to create a language to describe what we know of it.

    in my eyes there isn't anything more beautiful, permanent and certain than that. I think any deity I can dream of would pale in comparison.
     
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