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Does it matter if God exists?
Yes 26%  26%  [ 7 ]
No 41%  41%  [ 11 ]
Maybe 22%  22%  [ 6 ]
Sometimes 11%  11%  [ 3 ]
Something I forgot to but on the poll 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 27

Eggman
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15 Feb 2009, 10:09 am

Eggman wrote:
I never understood when pepople say that if you dont belive in God then why be kind to your fellow man....

In fact if there is no God, and there is nothing after you die, and this one life is all you get..no 1 ups, then under that reasoniong it makes more sense to make this life a paradise...or at least as good as it could be. Theres enough pain and suffering as there is allready without intentially adding to it....unles your a lvl 80 DK and you see a lvl 1 gnome..I mean that n0ob is just ascking to get pwned


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15 Feb 2009, 10:15 am

Some people get enjoyment from hurting others, or at least don't get it from being nice to them.


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Sand
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15 Feb 2009, 10:16 am

Eggman wrote:
I never understood when pepople say that if you dont belive in God then why be kind to your fellow man....


Because they themselves have little empathy for their fellow creatures. If you like people in general and want to be treated decently it is only basic good sense to act decently and religion has nothing to do with it.



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20 Feb 2009, 6:12 pm

merrymadscientist wrote:
In terms of feelings though it would be quite different - to be sure of life after death and some type of judgement. Don't know if this would be good or bad.

The reason why I wanted to exclude emotion from this discussion is that whatever feelings you get from your belief, in this life, you will have whether God actually exists or not; I also could have been more clear in stating that the ultimate answer is not what I am interested in because of course that would matter. What I am trying to understand is why there is so much intense debate on the question, even in topics that were intended assume one or the other.

Does your faith (or lack of it) motivate or empower you to act in a way that you would not have been able to without it? If not, why is the question so important?


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Sand
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20 Feb 2009, 8:34 pm

NobelCynic wrote:
merrymadscientist wrote:
In terms of feelings though it would be quite different - to be sure of life after death and some type of judgement. Don't know if this would be good or bad.

The reason why I wanted to exclude emotion from this discussion is that whatever feelings you get from your belief, in this life, you will have whether God actually exists or not; I also could have been more clear in stating that the ultimate answer is not what I am interested in because of course that would matter. What I am trying to understand is why there is so much intense debate on the question, even in topics that were intended assume one or the other.

Does your faith (or lack of it) motivate or empower you to act in a way that you would not have been able to without it? If not, why is the question so important?


As has been noted generally, religion plays no part in my life and much of it is objectionable to me but I include in my feelings all living things and am fascinated by each creature, human and otherwise, as to how they live and what makes them do what they do. I incorporate emotionally within myself all these various creatures and their intense desire to stay alive and prosper and because they are each a part of myself I try to help each in its endeavors. Unfortunately life is intrinsically competitive so there is always a competition within myself as to how to work my feelings through the maze of conflicting objectives. Life is not simple.



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21 Feb 2009, 12:24 am

Does the tooth fairy exist, Santa, the lock nest monster, peter pan? It really matters because religion seems to always impose on everyone else, whether they believe in anything or not. Religion is so engraind in the worlds political systems, it really affects everyone. All around the world it matters so much to people, they kill over it.

Don't mean any offense to anyone, this is just what I believe, so if someone gets mad at my comment, I would ask them, why is it okay for a religious person to speak about god, and tell me I am wrong, but it isn't okay for me to voice what I believe in.

Todd



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22 Feb 2009, 3:50 am

claire333 wrote:
I think if the existence of God were proven to me, then it might matter...but then again, that would depend on which God.


Took the words straight out of my fingers ^ .^



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22 Feb 2009, 3:56 am

I don't think it really matters or rather it doesn't matter whether someone believes or doesn't. I don't believe in the God from religion so much anymore but I do think it is possible a higher power exists. To each his own.


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Last edited by Social_Fantom on 22 Feb 2009, 4:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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22 Feb 2009, 4:01 am

Social_Fantom wrote:
I don't think it really matters or rather it doesn't matter whether someone believes or doesn't. I don't believe in the God from religion so much anymore but I do think it is possible a higher power exists.


By many definitions, a Star is a higher power than a Human. Indeed, the very substance we are made of was forged in the heart of Stars.



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22 Feb 2009, 4:08 am

Yes, there are many higher powers. But I am saying it may be possible for some kind of God-like being to exist. Whether it be He, She, or even They. The possibilities are endless. Why not? There are many puzzles man may never solve and I think this is one of them. True or not, I find this concept very intriguing.


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Sand
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22 Feb 2009, 4:20 am

Social_Fantom wrote:
Yes, there are many higher powers. But I am saying it may be possible for some kind of God-like being to exist. Whether it be He, She, or even They. The possibilities are endless. Why not? There are many puzzles man may never solve and I think this is one of them. True or not, I find this concept very intriguing.


There is nothing wrong with assuming that a higher power could exist, just as it is possible that there are bedbug on Mars. But it becomes significant when people not only assume the possibility but act on it as if it were true and then accept idiotic necessities dreamed up by idiots or people determined to kid people into submission or some other outrageous scamming plan. Fantasy can be dangerous.



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22 Feb 2009, 4:32 am

I agree with Sand, although I would have attempted to be less strident. :P

Social_Fantom wrote:
Yes, there are many higher powers. But I am saying it may be possible for some kind of God-like being to exist. Whether it be He, She, or even They. The possibilities are endless. Why not? There are many puzzles man may never solve and I think this is one of them. True or not, I find this concept very intriguing.


Of course gods may exist, but they most likely don't when we critically examine the question at hand. Even if there was a good chance they exist, we still have no evidence of their existence, and therefore positive belief is not justified. Acting and thinking as if they don't exist, whether we believe they don't exist (strong atheist) or not (weak atheist\agnostic), is the best possible choice given our options and information at hand.



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22 Feb 2009, 5:51 am

That is the question I wanted an answer to Legato. If you do that, and are proven wrong in the end, will you regret any of the choices you made baised on that belief?


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Sand
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22 Feb 2009, 6:02 am

NobelCynic wrote:
That is the question I wanted an answer to Legato. If you do that, and are proven wrong in the end, will you regret any of the choices you made baised on that belief?


That's a silly supposition. We each live our lives as best we can. Back in the middle 1970's I was offered some of the original Apple stock at very low prices and turned it down because there were quite a few companies that tried and failed to do anything significant in the new field and the probability that Apple would do any better was not worth taking a chance on at the time. Do I regret it. Sure. Does it bug me to any great extent? No. If you live long enough you will always encounter missed opportunities but life is too short to let such things fester. If there's a God and He wants me to accept that He has to deal with my personal outlook. We both have to bear the consequences.



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22 Feb 2009, 9:05 am

NobelCynic wrote:
That is the question I wanted an answer to Legato. If you do that, and are proven wrong in the end, will you regret any of the choices you made baised on that belief?


Short Answer: If I am wrong, I will regret nothing because the decisions I made were made having the knowledge and experience that I had at the time of the decision-making. What follows is my justification and rebuttal to Pascal's Wager.

Long Answer: Allow me to illustrate how I currently see this situation unfolding:

1. I do not have belief in any gods.
2. A particular god exists.

At this point we must make a decision on which god exists. Although there are thousands of gods that humans have conceived of, let us suppose that an Abraham-esque man-god such as YHWH exists, a soul and afterlife exists, there are varying qualities of afterlife, and this man-god judges us based on our lives. It's worth noting that I have just conceded many, many things that all individually have their own burdens of evidence -- I have created a metaphysical system, and only one of infinitely many possible metaphysical situations. At this point, the realization must be made that we know not which of the infinitely many metaphysical situations is the "true" one.

3. I live a generally good life and many a time helped others to enjoy a positive life.
4. I die still lacking a belief in gods.
5. My soul goes before our man-god to be judged.

At this point we must decide whether our man-god will make his afterlife judgement based on my having belief or not having belief, or if his judgement will be based on my works throughout my life. To any rational person, the quality of my works is manyfold more important in the larger scope of things than the ideas about the universe that I have formed in my head. Having a particular idea or not is ultimately meaningless at the time of our death. In the end, we are the sum of our actions. We will be remembered by other humans for what we do, not what ideas we may think.

This next point is a point of contention I have with most religions that posit an afterlife, soul, and judging god.

6. I am judged as sinful and deserving of eternal punishment.
6a. God overlooks my good life and punishes my lack of belief for some unfathomable reason, even though during my time on Earth there was no evidence of God's existence, and indeed no reason to believe that particular God existed in the first place.
OR
6a. God does not punish me for my lack of belief BUT S\He punishes me for an infinite amount of time for the bad things I did in my life.
6b. God is evil and capricious and does not deserve my worship, nor would I want to serve or be with this evil god.

Alt 6. I am judged as a decent person and my lack of belief is not punished.
Alt 6a. [Possibility] I am punished for a finite amount of time for the bad things I did, my soul is "cleansed".
Alt 6b. I am allowed into the positive afterlife and spend an undetermined amount of time reaping this reward.
Alt 6c. This is a god that I most likely would not mind being with and possibly would consider worshiping and serving.

-----
In the end, I am content with my fate no matter what for these reasons:

1. I lived a good life and helped other humans -- something that really, actually matters.
2. I was honest with myself and critically examined all aspects of life and knowledge in order to approach truth most accurately due to the lack of knowledge we have.
3. If a god\afterlife exists, we cannot know which god is the correct one in the first place.
4a. Any god that punishes a good life because of lack of belief or punishes with eternal punishment is not a moral god, and is definitely not worth belief or worship during human life. Worshiping an immoral god is not considered, by me, to be a moral act.
4b. Any god that rewards me for the good things I did in my life and does not punish nonbelief because the god knows of the lack of evidence for its existence is most likely worth serving in the afterlife.
4c. Any god that punishes me for the bad things I did in my life, for a finite amount of time, is a just god.

5. If a god actually did exist, was benevolent, and cared whether or not we believed in Him\Her enough to punish lack of belief, then that god would HAVE TO make it completely clear to ALL humans that that god was the true god. As it stands today, this ambiguous faith without evidence stuff combined with the thousands of human-engineered gods cannot be the proper environment for a benevolent god to demand baseless obedience in.