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a bit of help
06-18-2009, 11:24 PM
Post: #1
a bit of help
Lately my head has been filed with so many questions and no answers, maybe some of you guys could help. Lets get started, 1. From what i have learned according to the bible, the earth is 6000 years old.(correct me if I'm wrong.) But it has been proven and pretty much accepted that its 4.6 billion years old.(possibility older) Well if they got the age of the earth wrong, how can i believe there explanation of life on earth?

2. God says "I am the one, and only god" (I know that's not exact words!) Then why are there so many other religions.

3. Religion is such a sensitive subject, it runs peoples lives, and destroys others. Man is always looking for all the answers. But this is one, NO one knows. Could it be religion is just a way for man to feel he knows all the answers.

4. A world with out religion? I know it could never happen but lets just think about it. There would be no wars. In are world today some one can be killed for what he "believes" what will happen to him when he dies, and how the earth started. That just seems childish, and such a waste of life. This goes back to num. 2. If "god" created man. why did he instill the thought of other "gods" into peoples minds. With all the 100's of religions in the world how can you know that yours got it right. Because according to some one else you didn't.

5. Who really cares if there is a "god". Ask your self if you will, what have i done in the past week that i couldn't of done if i didn't believe in god.

6. Last one Tongue why is religion is loosely used. It seems to me that people are playing religion as almost a lottery. Thinking well, i cant win if i don't play.

all morals and principals are forgotten when the punishment is because of religion.
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06-19-2009, 12:22 AM
Post: #2
RE: a bit of help
These are very good questions. I empathize, the place you are coming from is very similar to the place I am coming from. My first instinct in seeing a post like this is to talk about what I believe is true, as an atheist (especially since I came from a fundamentalist Christian background), but then I realized that I came to where I am because there wasn't anyone who was simply feeding me more dogma. You don't need dogma, you need to start finding the truth.

So that said, here are a few pointers to help you on your own journey.

1. Verify sources. The first bit of advice I have to give you is this - people lie. It is a sad and horrible thing, especially when someone is seeking the truth, but people lie. The fundamentalist church I grew up in believed the teachings of the Creation Research Institute and a man named Ken Ham who spoke about intelligent design. I believed them. Then later, after I left the church, I learned that the "science" they had been using had been debunked for years, if not decades. It was old, faulty science. Further, they knew about the science, they had been made a laughingstock of the scientific community, but they were still putting it in textbooks to be sent to churches. On the other side, you have more hateful atheists, normally atheists because they despise god and not for any objective reason, who want to tear down the church by any means necessary. People lie to you, do not trust them. If someone tells you, "Well science has proven this," do a quick google search and see if you can find verification of that.

2. Challenge all your assumptions. Imagine your beliefs are like a security system. You followed the instructions, you set everything up, and you think it's pretty good. But it's still untested, and without a test you can never be certain. In the real world, banks and other companies hire people to try to break in to their establishments, to test security. With your beliefs, these are arguments. Attack your own beliefs. Attack them rigorously. Because you are looking for truth, and if what you believe is true it will hold up to attack. Don't be afraid to attack your own beliefs, if you find any weaknesses that just means you can look at things from a different angle and hold stronger, better beliefs.

3. Learn about logical fallacies. A simple Wikipedia search will help you here. There are a large number of logical fallacies that are used very, very often in religious debates. Learn them all. Learn to identify them. Call people on them, and reject arguments made with them. Among the science debaters, I've found the argument from ignorance to be the most common fallacy (that is, the belief that a lack of conclusive proof means something is untrue.) These fallacies exist for a reason - namely debaters and arguers for thousands of years have cataloged all the ways people, knowing or unknown, use semantics to mislead you. Learn them, and learn their exceptions.

4. Be brave. People are insane when it comes to religion. They will tell you that you are going to hell. They will accuse you, personally, of great atrocity. They will assume things about your character. Be brave. The search for truth is not taken lightly. If you want easy, pick a religion. Any religion. They'll tell you what to think. If you want true, you have to start thinking on your own.

If you want to know my personal answers to the questions you posted, just ask and I'll tell you. But submit anything I tell you to those principles as well. Test my arguments, check them for fallacies, and verify my sources. To paraphrase Paul, the apostle, don't just listen to me, check the facts and see if I'm right.
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06-19-2009, 05:31 AM (This post was last modified: 06-19-2009 08:55 AM by Stereophonic.)
Post: #3
RE: a bit of help
(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  Lately my head has been filed with so many questions and no answers...

Actually, from the tone of your "questions" it almost sounds as if you think you already know the answers...


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...From what i have learned according to the bible, the earth is 6000 years old.(correct me if I'm wrong.)

Where do you find the "6000" number in the Bible?


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...why are there so many other religions...

Humans cannot avoid worshipping something. We are worshipping creatures. Even atheism worships its own (quite limited) perception of science and reason. See Romans 1:20-25.


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...Could it be religion is just a way for man to feel he knows all the answers...

For me, I'll go with "faith seeking understanding."


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...A world with out religion? I know it could never happen but lets just think about it. There would be no wars...

What can you tell me about the former Soviet Union?


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...Who really cares if there is a "god". Ask your self if you will, what have i done in the past week that i couldn't of done if i didn't believe in god...

"For [God] gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike" (Matthew 5:45).


(06-18-2009 11:24 PM)anonym0us Wrote:  ...why is religion is loosely used. It seems to me that people are playing religion as almost a lottery. Thinking well, i cant win if i don't play.

Well, if all a guy wants to do is increase his odds, perhaps he should try Hinduism--it has thousands if not millions of "gods" or manifestations of "God." Strictly on the basis of these odds, Hinduism would seem a better choice than any of the three major monotheistic faiths. And yet, the major monotheistic faiths have more adherents than the polytheistic faiths. Go figure...

http://www.biblicaltraining.org/ --- http://www.ntwrightpage.com/
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06-19-2009, 09:52 AM
Post: #4
RE: a bit of help
Yeah, see Stereophonic? I call him "millstone neck". You know, because of that bible verse where it says it's better to hang a millstone around your neck than to mislead people? He's a big reason why you have to do #1 (verify sources) and #3 (learn your logical fallacies) from my list above.

I'd like to think he's not a typical theist, but he is a typical evangelical/fundamentalist.
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06-19-2009, 10:27 AM (This post was last modified: 06-19-2009 10:54 AM by Stereophonic.)
Post: #5
RE: a bit of help
GT, rather than continually indulging your proclivities for slander, bullying, and abuse, why not limit the content of your posts to simple analysis and questioning of the particular points that I make in my posts? Wouldn't that be the more reasonable thing to do?

http://www.biblicaltraining.org/ --- http://www.ntwrightpage.com/
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06-19-2009, 12:10 PM
Post: #6
RE: a bit of help
It's only slander if untrue. It's only bullying if there's threats. It's only abuse if undeserved.

And all I did is suggest he pay close attention to verifying your sources and learning logical fallacies so he can call you on them. Surely you have no qualms with that. Surely anyone who is actually making legitimate arguments, rather than trying to trick people into their religion, would welcome someone to seek more information.
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06-19-2009, 12:37 PM
Post: #7
RE: a bit of help
Okay, if you don't want to "limit the content of your posts to simple analysis and questioning of the particular points that I make in my posts," then that's your choice.

http://www.biblicaltraining.org/ --- http://www.ntwrightpage.com/
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06-19-2009, 01:58 PM
Post: #8
RE: a bit of help
Anyway, anonym0us, I think I've hijacked the thread enough. As I said, if you want specifics as to what I believe, you can ask (or just check the forums.) Keep yourself dedicated to finding the truth, rather than proving a particular philosophy, and you'll do all right.
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06-20-2009, 08:45 AM
Post: #9
RE: a bit of help
(06-19-2009 09:52 AM)GTseng3 Wrote:  Yeah, see Stereophonic? I call him "millstone neck". You know, because of that bible verse where it says it's better to hang a millstone around your neck than to mislead people? He's a big reason why you have to do #1 (verify sources) and #3 (learn your logical fallacies) from my list above.

Not that I disagree with the sentiment about not misleading people, but the passage you reference (Matthew 18) is probably not the best example. It is about not leading children into sin, most likely a caution by Matthew to safeguard the orthodoxy of his specific Jewish/Christian community against the encroachments of the new rabbinic Judaism.

Maybe we need a #1a, Understand the context of sources. Wink
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06-20-2009, 09:18 AM
Post: #10
RE: a bit of help
True, but I thought it was appropriate. Children of god, and all that. And are we not all children when we look for truth?
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