Linking a great post

May 4, 2013 at 2:25 pm 15 comments

This was posted over on  Thought it was worth spreading it here too.

“If you’re a Christian, or on the fence about your beliefs, I would like to recommend that you give a little thought to something important.

The Bible, and Christian clergy, writers, and apologists all make a very big deal of hewing to the faith, of shunning doubt and constantly “working on” one’s faith. They make it sound like actually thinking about and researching the truth values of your Christian beliefs is an insult to god. To question the teachings you’ve received, and actually question the truth of the Jesus story, they claim, is to “turn away from god.”

But is this really the right way to look at it? Why do they insist that you believe whatever you’re told in the Bible and in sermons? Why do they say, “Just take my word for it”?” …………

Entry filed under: LeoPardus. Tags: .

Bringing the argument home to the apologists A view from the other side….

15 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Tony  |  September 17, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Doubt. Had many, still do about everything-& yet what do we hold on to? Truth-it is found everywhere, even in your cited article and yet I can’t help but feel you still seek the only one who could always be truth-Jesus

  • 2. cag  |  September 17, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    Tony, so your standard for truth is a fictional character in a book of ignorance? You should refine your doubt to include the unbelievable.

  • 3. Alban  |  September 17, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    Tony, doubt in fiction is healthy. I liked Peter Pan and the movie “Hook”, but I had to grow up. Fantasies like Neverland or a paradisical Heaven can be held onto but does that make you any happier or is it just a generally accepted convenient rationalization for not finding what you may be trying to find.

    Want to hold on to something, check out a baby. Ever seen a baby smile at you at unexplainable times, even in distress. It lights you up when it’s one on one. I am reminded of this by a new grandaughter.
    Out of nowhere, not so much the smile but the joy that fuels that. Spontaneous and causeless. Where did it come from? Where does it go?

    Sometimes we think we can explain it, other times it doesn’t make sense like those distressful times. We see it is sometimes, not as a result. And for one moment of time every time until the innocence or that purity ‘disappears’ you as an adult feel something special when you witness it.

    So where does that joy go? Is it sealed up in a crate and moved into inventory, or is it still there? Belief doesn’t make that feeling reappear. Doubt in that belief though justified to an extent, provides no help interpreting the mystery of that special feeling or in contributing to find it.

    Could one man once upon a time make that feeling reappear by showing people how to find it within themselves? Sure. Religion and all the holding onto of faith does not remotely simulate that work.

    Maybe that feeling if ever found again might help us to help ourselves as a race, certainly as individuals, but as some have pointed out on this site, the odds of a mythical overseer are astronomically, not. Even one guy, one time still cranking it out from the great beyond? Let’s get real.

    But there may be a lot of wisdom in each of us, a lot of joy IF we could learn to open up the crate. Doubt at that point would have no standing. Now it just surrounds the cages.

  • 4. LeoPardus  |  September 17, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    No I do not still seek the historically questionable Jesus, nor do I seek any person or being who embodies “TRUTH”. Fairies, gods, and all other imaginary beings are forever off my radar.

  • 5. Alban  |  September 18, 2013 at 4:08 am

    LeoPardus. Thank you for being an integral part of this site. I have enjoyed your perspective since its inception, which I caught up on. You have a unique way of combining strategy within content which is entertaining and thought provoking, though your first sentence in response to Tony is puzzling as it seems you have previously- largely maintained an open mind in the midst of a pointed agenda.

    Historically questionable Jesus, aside…”nor do I seek any person or being who embodies ” That would categorically eliminate just about everyone who is alive including yourself. Now I know this is your effort to remove any acknowledgement of a human deity- that is what you meant, but the literal context would take any possibility of human contact away. All humans are embodied with TRUTH, not just master teachers, pretend or otherwise.

    Demystify (simplify)”TRUTH” to “life” and you have an observable phenomenon. One moment a person is alive, the next moment, not. You can call it a biological action or occurrence but the fact remains, “life” is no longer present, animation gone. Throw out all other mystic phenomena like the soul, God’s Will, grim reaper etc; and what just happened? cag was standing there one minute, the next he’s crumpled up and ready for disposal. Simple explanation: no longer alive. Even the term ‘expired’ indicates something was active in all of cag’s biology, his wit and his insight before it all stopped. No white bearded seer presiding, no angels, just life, energy, essence gone or no comparable description. How about dead?

    Theist, atheist or skeptic…better to be alive than not. Not alive, not present, not able to be. Puff it up throw in mystical components and it still doesn’t change the fact, life is valuable. How valuable? then becomes a legitimate question. If you have nothing when it’s gone, probably fair to say it’s priceless. So when you have it, is it ‘worth’ some self discovery? Managing priceless would suggest at least an attempt to discover an intimate, tangible knowing of it, IF it were possible. Discount/eliminate that and I think it was Krishna who said “they are already dead”

    So yes, everyday you are living with embodied TRUTH, all around you and inside you.

  • 6. cag  |  September 18, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    Alban, there is a vast difference between truth and “TRUTH”. To non-believers, “TRUTH” is similar to BS. To me, “TRUTH” is the opposite of truth. It is the blatherings of scammers (clergy) intent on convincing the masses to part with their money or goods. The bible is part of the scam as any real truth there is strictly coincidental. I want no part of that “TRUTH” in, near or around my body.

  • 7. LeoPardus  |  September 18, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    >>Demystify (simplify)”TRUTH” to “life” and you have an observable phenomenon. <<

    Why would I do that? Life is a biological process; truth is by and large a concept. One might as well equate flight with beauty; or fission with love.

  • 8. cag  |  September 19, 2013 at 1:27 am

    Leo, Alban is a “gourmet chef”. By that I mean that Alban specializes in the ultimate in word salad.

  • 9. LeoPardus  |  September 19, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Yeah I noticed that. Beaucoup verbiage, but minimal content.

  • 10. Alban  |  September 20, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Mm…sounds like a bit of that circular strategy (commentor, Leopardus) to neutralize zealous content circa 2008, I believe.

    Labels and descriptions of god or the biological process of life don’t change the common sensical fact, life is extremely valuable to have.

    We can dabble in and debate the surface as long as we possess life. Without it, there’s nothing. So, from a perspective on having something or nothing I’d say life is huge. You are right however, that statement of the obvious escapes most people so it would seem like minimal content.

    If people can’t understand the value of life on the surface, how could they understand all that may remain cloaked underneath the surface that is analogous to uncomparable treasure?

    Like the old expression, you have to crawl before you can walk.

  • 11. Alban  |  September 26, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    But you know what, I don’t think any of us get it and I was no different in the same imitation mentality…following but…not so quietly questioning historical Christian agenda…not exactly knowing where my doubt was coming from. Call it a hunch or intuition at that point but something vital was perplexingly absent.

    Few cherish the value of life on its surface. We take it for granted and perhaps for most the presence and preciousness of life is not considered until our last moments alive. What was up with the waiting?

    Ironically enough the quest to discover the treasure within from my observation, brought forth appreciation for life on its surface AS WELL. Never ‘knew’ it IS there to that extent just like most other people…who can discover it is within

    Astute individuals may want to re-examine the relationship of life and the value they place on it. We detach ourselves from ownership of life itself instead focusing MUCH more on short term endeavors not understanding the temporary, rental-like nature of those . Hard then to hope for more than a cerebral acknowledgement of life’s value contrasted with a welcome gracious feeling existing independent of circumstance.

    The linking of the life (process) with individual awareness is a practical investment but what if ownership is not realized,…will the ownership itself default back to a rental status- the 2 components separating at the end in addition to the physical demise in both instances?

    Maybe the speculation of the afterlife seems roughly similar. But it might be the best bet to invest in appreciating/knowing/perceiving the component that gives you the time to do the things you want to do while alive. That may seem somewhat analogous to Christianity and other religions as well, but prioritizes something you already have been given simply by being alive.

    The editing of the Bible reconstructed the theme of Jesus’ message of the feast inside people to the way we should live, to obey now and confidently speculate future benefit in the afterlife. Readers and believers could be proud and faithful in following the template for Salvation vs simply feeling innate freedom and joy..

    “Daily Bread” was not a symbol or a prophetic menu. Rather it is something tangible that is given, to accept, to literally connect to, each day.

    Even the most skeptical can connect all the dots with a little practical insight (from ‘consumption’) of self and life and a little research, in that order.

  • 12. cag  |  September 27, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Alban, your bloviating on the keyboard is analogous to the following instructions to go from where I live (British Columbia, Canada) to Accra, Ghana:

    First take a step, then look inside yourself for the directions, we all have it in us.

    Makes as much sense as your “directions”.

  • 13. Alban  |  September 28, 2013 at 2:13 am

    Advocacy of the importance rather than pompous or boastful, but have welcomed additions to my vocabulary. Compendium (from a previous post) and bloviate are new terms to me and will have to be fit in where possible.

    cag, Ghana is a long way from your home. What has been indicated as most practical and enjoyable, WITHOUT A DOUBT, is within you. No ID or fare (at departure) required. Perception is simple and tangible, and like a trip hopefully by plane to Ghana, it may take a few hours to peel back a little complexity to get simple enough to touch what’s already there.

    Directions? Consider the value of your own life or the process if you will, of the fact you are alive. Find within a genuine desire/want to know the essence of life or its process. Find a…maybe the only, living shower/connector of our present time. Spend a few enjoyable hours ‘peeling’. Then, humbly let the connector know you’d like to be connected, and it will made so. ‘Take off’ everyday,
    instantaneously ‘be’ everyday in a ‘place’ impartial to where you are geographically or circumstantially. Simply accessible…always peaceful.

    This journey will shed a lot of light on religion and atheism and skepticism as well. Perspective on abundance and our individual dis-attraction will be easily distinguished. The trick then, will be keeping to brief commentary consistently.

  • 14. divkay  |  December 26, 2014 at 10:12 am

    Doubt puts the breaks on in our minds, much like a negative, halting feeling. Ever doubted someone’s story because they’ve been caught lying before? Ever doubted a partner professing their love because we’ve been burned once? I’ve had my own doubts of the whole concept of Christianity too, non denomination though, but I find that it is so much more fulfilling to believe rather than doubt. Having faith, just basic, plain, pure child-like faith, in a deity without following ridiculous man-made rules in countless “Christian” religions can bring about such feelings of hope, love, a sense of belonging, etc. all of which are positive and much better to fill your life with than doubt or worse yet, nothing.
    Thanks for a great post. I’ve enjoyed reading it.

  • 15. Alban  |  December 26, 2014 at 6:41 pm

    divkay, I enjoyed the simple positive perspective. I wish more people could see then live by what you understand.

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