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  1. #1
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    Question Believe in "God" or not? Explain your reasoning.

    It seems as though lately in life I have come across a large number of athiest (or agnostic) people. In general I've noticed that these people share one thing in common, and that is the non-belief in things that are not physical (agnostic people are people who neither accept the idea of "God" or do not accept it at the same time.)

    I've been wondering a bit though. As an artist, understanding and knowing design and creation is a conscious process comes naturaly. As an artist one must be in understanding and aware that creating something requires thought, reasoning, and dedication in some degree. Seeing as this community is predominantly full of creative and thoughtful people, I wonder if people who are more creative and insightive, than say, a non-creative person, think that it's possible our world and all things physical were perhaps created with thought, reasoning and dedication (maybe even love) by a greater form of "life" (i.e. "God"). I put "God" into quotations because different people have a different interpretation of what "God" is, or believe in a different type of "God" based on religion or their own conclusions.

    Do you believe in "God" or not? Does your belief or non-belief in "God" affect or inspire your artwork at all? Explain your reasoning without insulting the beliefs of someone else.
    N & B

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  3. #2
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    The machinery of the world is far too complex for the simpliciety of man...

    Put simply, an agnostic person's jury is still out on the idea of a creator: In their view there simply isn't enough data to supoort or deny the existance of a higher entity.

    A Skeptic holds essentially the same stance as the agnostic and it can be argued that they are in fact one and the same.

    A cinic is often mockingly doubtful because they have most likely had tramautic experience in which their belief system was shattered.

    With that said, I am skeptic. My reasons for this are many. Bottom line I personally do not see enough supporting data to prove the existance of a god as defined by really any of the religions that I have come across.

    Science is a measurable process with duplicatable results that are constantly being re-examined and retested, with new theories being proposed and tested daily. The body of sciencific data that we have aquired is simply staggering to anyone who cares to take the time to look. Science does not rely on say-so. It relies upon measurable facts.

    Religion is a faith based, relying upon visions and the claims of others and doctrines that were written centuries ago (and some recently, depending). Faith, by it's very nature, can not be measured, can not be tested (other than by a test of will), can not be duplicated in the labratory. It is inmaterial - non physical. It is an emotional fortification that takes place when we *have* to believe in something, usually when we are faced with a dire circumstance, such as life and death, or some other major life's event that brings into question our own existance and the meaning there-of. It is very useful in summoning hidden resrouces to conquer an otherwise insurmountable situation. But it is not the sole domain those who believe in a higher power.

    Our world, both natural and created is filled with both beauty and ugliness, but only because we have said so. You remove the human from the equation and all labels dissapear. The flower just is. The landscape just is. The sky, just is. It is not *the sky*. It just is. We name these things such so that we may have some for reference to them so that we know what we are talking about within our given culrtures and languages. We see these things as beautiful because we have evolved a pattern recognition ability that we use in order to identify our parents at a very early age. This developes and modifies as we age and mature. We enjoy flowers because they offer a symetry that we reconize on a subconscience level (not to say we think they look like our parents, but that there is a structure that we find pleasing there). The same can be said with any pattern, beit a colour pattern or a composition. This is why we can identify something that is looks "off". We love beauty because we are genetically geared to do so. But natural beauty is not preconstructed, pre-meditated or pre-ordained. There is beuaty in chaos. Study the clouds of to see what I mean.

    We have faith because we need to. We need to believe that there is someone stronger than us. We need to have an ideal to reach for, something to strive for, something that we can perhaps atain.

    I don't think there is a "god". I think it's a little more complex than that. I think that there is life, and that we inexplicably tied to it in a way we really have yet to fully understand, and on levels we haven't even dream of yet. We have a tendency to seperate ourselves from the natural world in order to define ourselves. In doing so, we lose site of who and what we are and so our place in the so called scheme of things becomes disjointed in our view. We live lives that are really no longer connected to the very things that promote wellbeing and peace within ourselves, and thus, because we have seperated ourselves, we feel lost, aimless, and powerless.

    Artwork is an extension of our need to communicate. Something that is emotionally based - the need/desire to make some sort of connection with either ourselves or someone else. In its pure form, it has nothing to do with the concept of god, though I suppose there are those that tie it in.

    The Universe, the cosmos, creation, if you will is huge beyond our understanding. Take a walk on the beach on of these days and randomly pick up a grain of sand.

    Tell me, what is more special, more significant, more important about that particular grain of sand than all the rest in all the beaches throughout our world?

    There are more stars, more galaxies, than the uncounted grains of sand on our small, small world.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.

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    I dont even know anymore. I use to belive in god before. I prayed every night. lived doing good (relatively). but now I have this feeling that god either dosent exist or he just dosent do shit for me. he/she/it exist but only watches (if even that) I dont ask for anything from him. too many things happened for me to feel this way. but still I feel god is there. I think that he isnt as tough as all these "organized" religions make him out to be. as long as you do good to others and try and be a decent person he is chill. think about it would he really condem a person to hell for stealing food for his starving familly. if he would...fuck.

    good idea for a thread I bet alot of people are gonna get all hot on the subject. I know I'll probably have to defend myself but... to hell with it.
    bad is good and good is only okay...

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    Science has operated for the longest time with a faulty model.
    Experience has 3 components.....the observer, the process of observing, and the observed. Science has only ever focused on the observed up until recently.

    looking at experience as a whole, one must ask, 'who is the thinker of the thoughts?'

    ----------------------------------------------------------


    a few comments:
    Faith, by it's very nature, can not be measured, can not be tested (other than by a test of will), can not be duplicated in the labratory.
    I think that faith is often confused with hope. "With faith the size of a mustard seed you could tell that mountain to get up and move over there". I'm inclined to believe that true faith is more accurately described as certainty without arrogance. All the hope in the world couldn't move a mountain the way an ounce of certainty could.
    And with certainty one requires no proof. The truly faithful would not tell a mountain to get up and move unless it were necessary. A requirement of proof is a lack of certainty.

    Our world, both natural and created is filled with both beauty and ugliness, but only because we have said so. You remove the human from the equation and all labels dissapear. The flower just is. The landscape just is. The sky, just is. It is not *the sky*. It just is. We name these things such so that we may have some for reference to them so that we know what we are talking about within our given culrtures and languages. We see these things as beautiful because we have evolved a pattern recognition ability that we use in order to identify our parents at a very early age.
    fascinating. I think when Jesus said to 'be like the children' he was speaking about the exact thing you're talking about here. Children are unconditioned by recognition/habit.....they respond to every situation as though it were a completely unique experience. No conditioned response to anything.
    I don't think it's impossible to reverse the conditioning that we've adopted in our many years.

    I don't think there is a "god". I think it's a little more complex than that. I think that there is life, and that we inexplicably tied to it in a way we really have yet to fully understand, and on levels we haven't even dream of yet. We have a tendency to seperate ourselves from the natural world in order to define ourselves. In doing so, we lose site of who and what we are and so our place in the so called scheme of things becomes disjointed in our view. We live lives that are really no longer connected to the very things that promote wellbeing and peace within ourselves, and thus, because we have seperated ourselves, we feel lost, aimless, and powerless.
    wow....that was put beautifully. I totally agree.

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    one2hit - I don't know if we humans, at least at this point, are capable of knowing for a fact if their is a god or not. All we can do is choose to believe or not believe. And that can be very difficult seeing how it's unclear whether or not their is a God that aids people in life, or if thats just simple chance and circumstance. And then theirs the whole question of free will. Do we have any? Or are our lives totally governed by our genetics, and life experiences, meaning that everything you do, is because of some other factor, not because of you. Or does God control your life in everyway, leaving you with no freewill.

    I'm rambling, but whether or not God exists, it effects my art work with the stories I write, and some of the ideas I have for art works.

    NoUseFrAName - About science running on a faulty model. That depends on the kind of sceience your talking about. Their's, what I like to call, "Logical Science", based on actual facts like science is suppose to be, and then "Illogical Science", based on beliefs, which is stupid. Like those scienctists who believe in the big bang theory and make up more beliefs from that. So, it's not "science" that operated on a faulty model. It was illogical science, which, I don't really consider to be science, since, science is about facts, not fiction.

    And what you said about, "looking at experience as a whole, one must ask, 'who is the thinker of the thoughts?'" Thats a human way of analyzing that. Who's to say their was a "thinker"? Maybe it wasn't "who", but, "what" was the beginner of all things?

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    non believer until proven otherwise

    If there is a "God" then its existance would negate the necessity for faith, you would know, you wouldn't have to have faith in its power. Up to now I have never seen a single shred of evidence for the existance of a "God" and since all holy books were written by men, they can't be taken as proof in either direction.

    Too many of our previous Gods have been dethroned by propaganda to take any of it seriously, in my opinion, no proof no "God"

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    I put my faith in the facts. If God is proven to be a fact, then I'll believe too, but till then...

    Or, put in another way, I'll believe when the argument stop looking like this:

    Shoonist vs Ashoonist, I forget the author.

    A: "Why do I keep dropping things?"
    B: "Its the shoons."
    A: "What are shoons?"
    B: "Invisible beings that pull things out of your hands and throw them on
    the floor."
    A: "Why would I believe that?"
    B: "Well, if you cant disprove it, you have to believe it."
    A: "But you didnt prove it."
    B: "I can feel them. You can feel them too. You're just in denial."
    A: "Well I dont believe it."
    B: "So you are an ashoonist."
    A: "Whats an ashoonist?"
    B: "One who arbitrarily refuses to believe in shoons. You wonder why you
    drop things, but you arbitrarily reject the explanation."
    A: "Okay then, Im an ashoonist."
    B: "But ashoonists are all cynics and killjoys! Is that the kind of company
    you want to keep?"
    A: "Wait! Before you told me about the shoons, was I a shoonist, or an
    ashoonist?"
    B: "Well, neither. That word just meant nothing to you."
    A: "And it still means nothing to me. Try me again when youve got evidence."

    Last edited by dfacto; June 20th, 2004 at 11:08 AM.

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    This could be such a can of worms...oh well...
    I can contribute to this topic a little about God from the perspective of the Bible's concept of God, or at least as much as I understand of it. Like it or not, the Bible has to be the biggest source of Western culture's understanding of 'God' throughout history so I think it pays to at least take it into consideration.

    The Bible defines some of the characteristics of God as:

    Omnipotent- All powerful
    Omnipresent- Everywhere
    Omniscient- All-knowing

    In order to have these three characteristics, God must be outside of the physical bounds of nature as we understand them. Because God (according to the Bible) is the creator of the universe, it makes sense to expect that he exists outside of the boundaries of his creation. Because he is not limited by the laws of physics as we understand them we have to abandon any concept that God is physically anything like a human or any other creature in any physical way.
    For example- If I make up a new card game using my own rules, those rules determine the way the game is played but they do not define me as a person. Another person playing the game cannot understand everything about me simply by studying the rules of the card game.

    I guess you could take that as an oversimplification but anyway, I reckon that'll do for now...

    oh yeah, the lack of physical similarity to humans includes gender. The Bible describes God with characteristics of a mother as well as 'The Father'
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    Interesting analogy, expat.
    The word "God" in the Bible is often a translation of the word "Elohim," which is the plural form of the word. Hmmm.

    Also, God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." (Gen. 1:26 KJV) So He intentionally patterned humans after Himself. (And He uses the "us" pronoun: see above paragraph.)

    Just throwing out some things to think about.

    emily

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    Another thought:

    I think that there are a lot of well meaning people that really, really *want* there to be a god.

    It would make things much easier and tidier, and would succinctly answer many of life's mysteries. Just chalk it up to the creator. No longer a mystery, but something we don't have to worry about because it's the cosmic parental figure's responsibility to handle. Further, we are no longer responsible for ourselves because we got god! (I'm poking a little fun here, not being cynical or mean - I was thinking of the Baker's and Falwell)

    The other thing is that if there was a god, life would be a lot safer. Like having a net underneath the highwire.

    But without the god concept, life opens up into a huge unknowable, dangerous and frightening experience.

    Don't get me wrong. If it can be shown that there is a god, without a doubt, I'll accept that.

    Until then, I want to see identification.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.

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    hey guys, just checkin' in before bed, thought i'd reply to a couple of the comments.

    emily- i think the reference you used where God refers to 'us' is usually understood to mean that God the Father is referring to the other parts of the Trinity, implying that the Son and Holy Spirit were with God during creation. I guess that's important because it helps to show God as simultaneously a Trinity and yet all three parts of it are the same Being (another possibility when there are no physical limitations). That's also referred to in the Gospel of John...
    I'm not sure if that's the idea you were referring to or not.

    As for Hebrew interpretations of the word/name 'God', there are at least three seperate names for God in Hebrew and each has a different flavour and different specific usage depending on the context. That's as far as I know anyway...

    Oregano- You make a good point- a lot of people really want there to be a god of some sort. You only have to look at the variety of different belief systems to see that...It's also sad to know that so many have used God as an excuse to commit such huge atrocities (or even small ones i guess).

    I don't agree that belief in God makes life a whole lot easier, it simply introduces a different set of complications. A lot of people sacrifice a lot for their beliefs, many go through extreme hardship. many really pour a lot of time into thinking through their belief.

    Meanwhile of course, others simply accept religious doctrine as truth without ever thinking about it for themselves and live upper middle class lives of self indulgence and self righteousness!

    well anyway, sorry to ramble on...hope i don't upset anyone

    i'm going to bed!
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    For those of you interested in the subject, you can google for apologetics, which is a word for trying to prove (mostly the christian) god with logic. There are of course an equal amount of anti-apologetic sites, like jesusneverexisted.com but I don't have time to get involved in that stuff. There's a lot of other gods that would deserve an equal amount of my attention if I decided to get involved.

    Here's an interesting page on reasoning that everyone should read:

    http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/


    And for the record, I don't practice any religion, but it's interesting how religions have organism-like traits (so in a way they do exist), they live in people's heads and multiply through media/speech, they 'mutate' and are a subject to 'survivial of the fittest'.
    Last edited by Prometheus|ANJ; June 20th, 2004 at 01:17 PM.
    Jamen jag tror att han skäms, och har gömt sig. Vårt universum det är en av dom otaliga spermasatser som Herren i sin självhärliga ensamhet har runkat fram för å besudla intet.

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    There's always that big boom theory. Maybe God is too busy to help everyone, because if you think about it there's so many galaxy out there, maybe there's other lifeforms, not just us humans, but our souls are the same.
    Wasn't there a saying that God was going to let humans do everything our way for a certain long amount of years to see if we can do everything without him, like a test of sorts. Well I dunno, I use to believe back when I was a kid, and still kinda do, but it's not as strongly like back then. One thing is that religion can be taught, your not born to believe. One woman told me that If I didn't believe in God (Jehovah) then I will go to hell. That would be alot of people going to hell then, if they believe in other religions that they were taught. Til then I'll just live my life as I usually do, being the kindest person on earth, and see if I'm still going to hell for that one.
    "If you only heard one side of the story, then you must be deaf in the other ear." - Sok N. Wett

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    hey expat,
    Yes, I was referring to that and several other ideas. People can and do interpret the "us" as meaning:
    God and Jesus Christ
    God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost (as you mentioned)
    God (male) and God (female) (which answers why God seems to have both male and female characteristics)
    God and other unknown "Gods"

    I was also pointing out that how can we say God has no physical similarity to humans when he says here that he created us in his image?

    Oregano--yes, many people want there be a "higher power." Why is that? Yes, it does make things easier in the sense that it offers explanations for the otherwise unexplainable. But, as expat mentioned, believing in God can also make things a whole lot more difficult.
    The fact that throughout history humankind has believed in diety/dieties says something to me. Why do we search for a divine origin if there is none? I think there are two possibilities:
    1) There is no god. Humankind just has a desire to "explain the unexplainable," and this is the easiest answer.
    2) There is a god. Humankind looks for a divine origin because it is of divine origin.

    MIKECORREIRO--heh, those are the kinds of thoughts that make my head explode.

    Prometheus|ANJ--hey, glad to see that someone else knows what apologetics are. I mentioned that idea to someone and they were like, "Why are they trying to apologize?"

    Sok--I believe something similar to what you mentioned, about life being a test. But I think it's more of God saying, "Let's see how well you can do if you can't see me standing in front of you all the time."
    I don't believe that someone will go to hell just because they don't believe in God. God emcompases both justice and mercy, and I don't think that that idea is either just or merciful. What if someone never heard of God, or believed in a different god? I think the only people who go to hell are those who say, "I know that God exists and yet I refuse to follow him." i.e. you have to know that God exists in order to truly reject him.

    I, also, am just trying to live my life the best I can, be nice to other people, etc.

    emily
    Last edited by emily g; June 20th, 2004 at 01:50 PM.

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    A very complicated subject. Given the choice is all that comes down to it. I could live my life believing or not believing, it is my choice, and yours as well.

    When it comes down to it, there is certainly a force unexplainable and incomprehensible to the human mind. To have acceptance of God is truly to be free I believe. I mean I will live my life not just for myself and try to be a good person as much as possible, and I also accept I will make mistakes and have made mistakes.

    You can read millions of opinions and slanderous/bias perceptions on the subject but it is a personal choice and that is where it begins and ends.

    Anyhow thats just my little bit, accept it or not,

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    Mike:

    "Things" great or small were created by someone.
    The argument you made is sefl defeating. If you keep asking questions of atheists and theists, you will run into :

    Where did the universe/God come from?

    I think it would be easier to explain the origin of a random anomaly (Is it? Who knows...), rather than explain the origin of a random SENTIENT anomaly. There are already theories as to the creation of the universe, and some day there may be final answers, but God is unknowable by definition, which always leaves the big questions unanswered.

    Oregano: Hehe, this kinda cracked me up.

    Don't get me wrong. If it can be shown that there is a god, without a doubt, I'll accept that.

    Until then, I want to see identification.
    "Sir, license and registration please."
    "But..."
    "No buts sir, lets see 'em."
    *snap crackle pop*:electric:

    "There's your license and registration for ya, SINNER!"


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    no i don't believe in any kind of god, i think, at least not in the christian type. i think ppl want to believe in god cuz they want some explanation for things they don't understand or know. it's a real easy way out. plus the whole heaven\hell thing... makes life simple.

    no it does not affect my artwork in any way. bible etc. is fantastic background material for stories though.

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    Re: non believer until proven otherwise

    Awesome responses. This is really far better than I had expected to get. Please remember that this thread was not created to come to any kind of conclusions, and it was not created for people to come in here and tell others that they are "right" and/or someone else is "wrong". If you do indeed feel so there is nothing wrong with that but don't inject those feelings into the thread. Honest discussion about your own beliefs is the best way to go, and so far we have a nice collection here of great posts.

    Originally posted by young paddy1
    If there is a "God" then its existence would negate the necessity for faith, you would know, you wouldn't have to have faith in its power. Up to now I have never seen a single shred of evidence for the existence of a "God" and since all holy books were written by men, they can't be taken as proof in either direction.

    Too many of our previous Gods have been dethroned by propaganda to take any of it seriously, in my opinion, no proof no "God"
    This is a good post, it gives example for many other people who think the same manner. It is also indeed a logical thought process. If there is no proof of "God" why should we believe it? Well, as NoUseFrAName so elegantly put it: "A requirement of proof is a lack of certainty." I for one believe that given the history of humanity that "God" will never allow "God" to be proven with 100 percent assurance to all people. The truth can not be told to you, it has to be learned for yourself and different people come to different conclusions of what their own "truth" will be. Certainty and hope are indeed two different things. If one does in fact come to a certainty of "God" then one requires no proof to believe or feel "God" is real. Actually I believe that there is proof, but the proof can only be shown and revealed to the one who is in search of "God" already. This is a part of why I believe that no one can tell you the truth and it has to be "proved" to yourself through your own witness to life. It is obvious some people believe in "God" and other's don't. It is necessary for our world to be like this and it is necessary for "God" to be loved and accepted with all certainty out of the will of those who find truth, proof, and reason to accept "God" on their own account.


    Originally posted by MIKECORRIERO
    The last question is, where did " ANYTHING" come from?? There had to be a point in which "Something" was created by a greater being or by "something"
    Space didn't just create itself, nor did it exist since beyond time.
    does time date back to 10000000000,00000000000,00000000000,00000000000 B.C.? [/i]
    There is a theory that matter can be neither created or destroyed only moved around. Actually I believe this isn't a theory but a proven fact. I can't remember it's name or inventor though. This could work for either side of the debate however. One could argue that all matter existed for all time, and given the probability of infinite space and time our world could be created. The same could be used to say that "God" created these things and they exist within the physical realm and fall subject to physical rules. I believe that there is a spiritual realm and our minds exist inside it. Perhaps this is one reason scientist's can't figure out exactly what part of our brain produces free will and the ability to reason out of will. I think that the spiritual world is more powerful and influential than the physical and for such cosmic physical things to exist, such as our world, and the universe around it, it would have to be created from a spiritual being (not as in, some giant hand in the sky picking up stars and moving them around in constellations as some people might think of O_o). Maybe I'm weird, or maybe I've just come to a different version of my own "truth" and perhaps I am still discovering it.


    Originally posted by NoUseFrAName
    fascinating. I think when Jesus said to 'be like the children' he was speaking about the exact thing you're talking about here. Children are unconditioned by recognition/habit.....they respond to every situation as though it were a completely unique experience. No conditioned response to anything.
    Awesome! I believe this too. I don't think we should arrive at a point where one might call you "childish" but when you think about the way a child's mind works, it's on a far simpler, unobstructed level. When two children see each other nude there is no lust, no desire for the flesh, they are innocent to a certain degree. I don't think we should become naive, or unaware of things, but I believe that when Jesus said that he meant for us to be pure, and strive to become innocent. Obviously this is ridiculously hard, and there will always be an ongoing debate of what is "pure" or what is "sinful", but saying "be like the children" was a good example.
    Last edited by one2hit; June 20th, 2004 at 04:05 PM.
    N & B

    ~Sketches

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    Yes I believe that if you really want to find out the answer, it is really up to you. I dont think many people really make up their minds quickly and shouldn't as it is a strange and sometimes overwhelming conceptualization of life after death, or no life at all. Even I get confused sometimes.

    The creator created and we live with what we are given. We are given the free will to choose or deny. That is the beauty of it. If we were to know he existed we would still deny him because we are not perfect, but that is the point. Now is it soley our choice. E.g. Adam and Eve disobeyed. I also believe a lot of the bible is in parable and metaphors because to say something in comparison is much more powerful than just saying it.

    If you read the old testament prepare for a lot of oldschool laws! Now in our world, the greatest and hardest thing, is to learn to love and not hate, it is so much easier to jump to hate. THat is the simplicity of it. Learn to love.

    Anyhow perhaps I rambled too much but this my view. Please exuse any incoherency

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    That is what I believe is at the heart of all things. An ability to understand and feel both hate and love, and to make a conscious on-going decision to keep your mind in a state of love for all people around you. This is in no way a practical suggestion to anyone because it's impossible to love at all times, but I think we should try to get to that point, to be at peace with everyone when we can be.

    Let's keep it on topic though.
    N & B

    ~Sketches

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    AH yes on the topic of inspiration. For sure. It gives you someting else other than your own motives. Like getting better to get more money, or trying to impress someone. It definitely humbles you and makes you selfless when you have faith. It brings things into perspective and gives you motivation to keep going and overcome any struggles.

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    I find the idea of a universe that functions by itself more fascinating than the idea of a universe that was magically created a god. It's really impressive how nature has managed to construct 'complex adaptive systems' such as ourself with just basic steps.

    If you like to ask what there was before 'spacetime', why not also ask what there was before god?
    Jamen jag tror att han skäms, och har gömt sig. Vårt universum det är en av dom otaliga spermasatser som Herren i sin självhärliga ensamhet har runkat fram för å besudla intet.

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    Yes but logic doesn't explain everything . God was and is my man. It is not easy to comprehend and we dont fully understand it really, but God was there. God created time and everything that is so complex like nature and us!

    But this is turning into a belief versus nonbelief thread I think we shouldn't do that

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    It is like something you just know, you know? I simply follow the truth. It is hard to explain . Contradictory perhaps? Maybe I just cant explain it very well!

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    I find the idea of a universe that functions by itself more fascinating than the idea of a universe that was magically created a god. It's really impressive how nature has managed to construct 'complex adaptive systems' such as ourself with just basic steps.
    how can one be more impressive than the other in either of those cases? It's the prescision of it all that's so extraordinary.....what causes it is irrelevant. Impressed by the majesty of nature vs. impressed by the majesty of God.....? that's the same thing as far as I'm concerned.

    The intelligence that permeates all things.....call it nature, call it God, call it energy.....whatever it is, it's awesome.....it's the intent behind everything.

    And really, God doesn't change, truth doesn't change, physics doesn't change.....
    Even without a title...even without religion, even without our understanding, it's entirely the same standard that makes existence possible.

    Being atheist is hardly being in disbelief that there's a God. If God a)doesn't change, and b)is perfect, then God is like a law of physics. Atheism is merely disbelief in a stereotypical idea of God.
    Like a law of physics, God can't be appealed to in hopes that God will change, everything already abides by God.
    Prayer still works, yes....because prayer hinges on intent.....when we clarify our intents, we align energies that manifest those intents.*

    The intelligence that makes a stem cell know that it has to become a liver cell....the intelligence that lets our fingers remember a phone number when our mind does not.....that's God.
    The intrinsic connection that glues our universe together. A scientific factor to atheists, God to believers. Strip away the difference of language and it's the exact same thing.

    *and so far as free will is concerned.....God knows everything that we're going to do right?
    Does that mean that we don't have free will? that our free will is just determinism in disguise? no.
    Time doesn't move in a line...we just percieve it that way. If God is the intelligence that permeates all existence in the world, and if God doesn't change, the only way for us to have free will and to be completely accounted for in any descision by that all encompassing intelligence, is for all possibility to be occuring at once.
    We do not move, God does not move(or change); that intelligence is a constant. All that moves/shifts is consciousness.

    who/what is the thinker of the thoughts? thoughts are the signs that consciousness sees as it moves through possibility. Intent is the car of consciousness. God is the highway that it cruises on.
    Without the highway there'd be nowhere for consciousness to move.

    We all believe in reality....but to know it completely you must give up free will and be bound by the truth of all that is. If we knew everything we couldn't make a wrong choice, and thusly, we'd have no choices to make....no free will.

    the fact that we've all chosen to participate in this at all is evidence that there's free will, which is evidence of intent, which is evidence of consciousness, which is evidence of thought(being that thought is the only way consciousness can realize it's real), which is evidence of movement, which is evidence of universal intelligence which directs movement.

    God/a God factor is real.

    To be made in God's image is to be made in the reflection of perfection.....to be a functioning piece of the grand design.

    Nothing matters because everything works.

    -Rob
    My Sketchbook
    Encouragement keeps me swimming , even in the undertow of disappointment.

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    i think you guys need to define 'god' before you start discussing his existence, or lack thereof. no point in discussing it if you're all talking about a different 'god'.

    Prom: sounds like your talking 'bout memes. have you read The Meme Machine? it's quite good.
    ...so what if i'm bored, and ordinary?...

    currently playing: Super Mario 64 DS, ICO (grrrr....)

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    I believe in the gods (I'm Hindu)

    First off, I really support many of the beliefs of my religion and I think that religion is motivation. For the most part, I think a religion can only strengthen a person's beliefs. There are usually contrasting views in religion and a person can choose to believe either side of the argument. Religion is what you make of it, in my opinion.

    This doesn't really answer the question of "is there a god?" but my opinion is that a person SHOULD believe in gods/a god.

    God, I hope that made sense. get it? I said GOD...hahaha...sorry.

    Does your belief or non-belief in "God" affect or inspire your artwork at all? Explain your reasoning without insulting the beliefs of someone else.
    Well, it doesn't affect my artwork and Jesus is stupid. Haha, just messin'. Of course, I think the mythology might affect the concepts, but that's not really the belief, is it?
    Last edited by The Iconoclast; June 20th, 2004 at 09:16 PM.

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    It's amazing to think that back before the birth of Christ, every country had their own god/gods, and after awhile their god was replace with another god, and so on and so on. Back then it was more of a reality, now we just call it mythologies. I wonder if God created the universe and us and all living things, who created him, an egg can't be hatch if there's no chicken around. Could there, maybe be a higher being. Anyone seen the anime (Not the movie) called "Guyver", that has a pretty good story about human evolution.
    "If you only heard one side of the story, then you must be deaf in the other ear." - Sok N. Wett

    Sok's Sketchbook Thread Last Updated November 25

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    concerning evolution, does an artist draw a landscape with all identical trees? or does he draw a bunch of trees that are different....different heights, different ages? trees with a history.

    If the big bang is a working theory, it doesn't necessarily negate the story of creation......God could have made the world with a trillion year history just like I draw a soldier that has fought iin many battles.

    -Rob(if God is the perfect artist, we're all trying to be like God!)
    My Sketchbook
    Encouragement keeps me swimming , even in the undertow of disappointment.

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    Faith in God

    Hey all,

    I wanted to give my two cents on the thread. I am a christian and I'm no expert but I went so far as to attend a bible college for close to 4 years to get some answers.

    I wanted to touch on two things I've found important.

    First, Apologetics as described earlier, I find a fascinating subject in itself. Two of the most readable and useful texts are a 2-book set by Josh Mcdowell called "Evidence that demands a verdict", and the second is a bit more philosophical, CS Lewis' "Mere Christianity."
    Another book I've been told is good is by Lee Strobel, "The Case for Faith: A Journalist Investigates the toughest objections to Christianity" (or something along that line).

    The Second thing is really the sum of my studies and what my faith ultimately rests on.
    The apostle Paul (one of Jesus' main proponents in the early church) said that if Christ wasn't raised from the dead that our faith(christianity itself) was futile and we should be pitied above all men.

    EVERYTHING I believe has to go throught that. Ican't go back in time to see how things began. I can't even "scientifically" prove that Jesus ever walked the earth(for that fact we can't "prove" that napoleon existed")
    I suppose that's the essence of the faith described in the bible. I have weighed the "evidence" that's available and I believe that however unbelievable, that man actually got up three days after his death and was who he said he was.
    It's really that simple.

    There is SO MUCH that goes into the "evidence" but ultimately the decision about Christ and the bible (I humbly believe) boils down to that. This has little to nothing to do with my experiences good or bad or what I can prove or not prove.

    Humbly submitted, and thanks for letting me write,

    Smith

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