Confused

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This topic contains 22 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Simon Paynton 6 days, 8 hours ago.

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  • #30073

    Ivy
    Participant

    I find myself more confused than ever about what I believe…or don’t believe. And about what I am going to do. I am scared that I’m going to make the wrong decisions and I don’t have a lot of time. I’m in over my head.

    #30074

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    What you believe or don’t believe is separate from what you’re going to do, right?  It seems like you have a good compass anyway.

    A good decision must be informed.  Try getting as much information as you can.

    Sometimes we’re choosing the least worst option.  It’s good that you admit you’re in over your head, it’s good to admit reality.

    I think a decision consists of facts, and goals, and how to reach your goals given the facts.

    #30075

    Hi Ivy. When you say you are confused about what you believe are you talking about belief in God or with something broader that involves trusting specific people and what they say?

    A good place to start is with a pen and paper and write down what you think you believe and underneath write down why you hold those belief to be true. Does the reason for first believing it still ring true to you? Do you really believe it or just think you do?

    Embrace your doubt. It is nothing to fear. It is your “mental defense network” (my term) sending an alarm to you that something is off about. Try to think it through by yourself first before asking those around you that may be the cause of your doubt.

     

    #30076

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    If I want to think through why I believe something, I look at evidence.  If the evidence is inconclusive, I say I don’t know.  I don’t know whether God exists: there’s evidence for and against.  On the other hand, apart from “accepting Jesus into my heart” or joining the Jehovah’s Witnesses, I do what God would like anyway.

    #30087

    PopeBeanie
    Moderator

    I’ve had a few really incredible/awesome coincidences happen in my life that might influence some people into believing they were caused by supernatural influence. I’ll never forget them. But I’m still not ready to believe they had anything to do with what “believers” say is their go-to assumption. (Presumption, even.) Mere humans make up all kinds of mythology, and even if some divine power had or has something to do with my personal events, I need a lot more proof as to exactly “who or what” poked at my life story.

    I will NOT default to humanity’s speculative words or scripture claimed as gospel, much less will I feel guilty or peer pressured. (But then, I hardly ever follow any cultural “fashions”.)

    #30088

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Simon your advice was good until..there’s evidence for or against. No evidence. What do you have in mind as evidence? There is indoctrinated thinking, delusional thinking and wishful thinking. What evidence!

    Second thing that makes no sense…I do what god would like anyways. if there is an architect and it has a role in human behavior or cares about human conduct/behavior how in dafuq could you know the mind of god?

    #30089

    Simon, as Jakelafort wrote – there is no evidence for or against any god ever existing. We would all be better off living our lives understanding that they don’t. It would not just elevate our species as a whole but also make us better and stronger as individuals. The less magical thinking we engage in, the more we engage with reality.

    #30091

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I don’t buy into any of the evidence offered by William Lane Craig, for example – I don’t believe we need God in order for logic or reason to exist, and I think that the evidence from Jesus’ crucifixion and reported resurrection is too weak to base a religion on.

    The only evidence I have “for” is that we sometimes appear to get divine intervention.

    what God wants

    What I mean is, the general prosocial attitude, which is one of the takeaway messages I get from Christianity and Islam.

    The less magical thinking we engage in, the more we engage with reality.

    I’d agree with that.

    I think religion can be a very healthy thing for some people if they take it the right way.  Conversely, it can be unhealthy for others.

    When my book (if) comes out this year, there will be a secular alternative for those who want it, based on the evolutionary pressure to thrive.

    #30092

    But Simon W.L. Craig does not offer any “evidence”. He only argues for his particular gods’ existence. He is famous for his Kalam Cosmological argument (i.e. not evidence but argument).  When his producer Kevin Harris posted on Think Atheist I had to correct the title of one of his post from “Evidences for the Christian God” to “Arguments for the Christian God” (back in 2011). He eventually agreed with the new wording.

    Again, evidence is the wrong word to use as there is none. The only thing left is argument. All arguments for God have been debunked numerous time. So no objective evidence, no sound arguments, no need to believe.

    #30093

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    But WLC presents potential evidence such as “objective morality”, logic, and reason which for him point to the existence of God.  For me, they can all be explained by other means.

    Objective morality is the morality of one’s group (e.g., German nazis believed they were objectively correct) and the various groups mostly overlap in a common core of principles.

    Logic derives from the laws of the physical world.

    Reason is the way in which humans describe reality to each other.

    #30094

    But WLC presents potential evidence such as “objective morality”.

    No, he argues the case for “objective morality” and he argues that this objective morality is from God. Not “a god” but his particular God.

    #30101

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Anyway I think my point is, at the end of the day it doesn’t matter too much whether somebody is religious or not, as long as they have a good head on their shoulders, and have a sound philosophy for living.

    #30102

    Anyway I think my point is, at the end of the day it doesn’t matter too much whether somebody is religious or not, as long as they have a good head on their shoulders, and have a sound philosophy for living.

    But Simon a philosophy for living that is grounded in the existence of imaginary entities would not, in my opinion, be the best way of securing your head upon your shoulders.

     

    #30103

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Simon, the notion that the evidence for god is divine intervention? Wherever, whatever are you conjuring? Atrocities such as genocides, torture, massacres, fire bombing; so called acts of god such as earthquakes, tsunamis,volcanoes, hurricanes? From the human perspective that makes divine intervention high jinks from a divine prick.

    You did not answer me as to how you know the mind of god. You reference WHAT GOD WANTS. What makes you think there is a god? How do you know its mind to know what god wants? If you are utilizing religion to know the mind of god is there a rational basis to decide which religion that has it right?

    Prosocial attitude? Ha? So you overlook the oft-cited passages in the Koran and bible that point to anything but a prosocial attitude? Moreover, history suggests that Islam and Christianity have the opposite effect. Crusades, militarism, pogroms, autos de fe, inquisitions, sexism, slavery etc.

    If you can’t answer my questions satisfactorily you are in no way prepared to write a book. We as a species have been and continue to be myopic, arrogant egoists. It is a human conceit to posit our importance in a wondrous and for us incomprehensible universe.

    #30104

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Simon, the notion that the evidence for god is divine intervention? Wherever, whatever are you conjuring?

    Sometimes when I go all out to help someone, I seem to get help out of nowhere.  But I’m still an atheist.  The other questions I’ve already answered.

     

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