Author Topic: Spiritual - not religious  (Read 3448 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline generousgeorge

  • Emergency Room
  • ****
  • Posts: 311
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #29 on: September 29, 2010, 09:18:22 AM »
ARGHHHHHHHH!!!!! :o

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 15420
  • Darwins +169/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #30 on: September 29, 2010, 09:47:23 AM »
I really like NGFM's question.  And I think that "spiritual" raises hackles because it necessarily leans on things that have no good evidence.  I wish there was a better word to describe that sense of gaining "awareness" for want of a better term. 
"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/

Offline Gimpy

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1986
  • Darwins +1/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • Are we there yet?
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #31 on: September 29, 2010, 10:09:10 AM »
To me, "spiritual" equals Carl Sagan's Cosmos - Star Stuff

Not all those who wander are lost; some are buried in my backyard. . .

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 15420
  • Darwins +169/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #32 on: September 29, 2010, 10:45:30 AM »
yep, that seems on how a lot of people take it.  To me it has the taint of spirit = soul = supernatural.

"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

http://clubschadenfreude.wordpress.com/

Offline generousgeorge

  • Emergency Room
  • ****
  • Posts: 311
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #33 on: September 29, 2010, 10:49:18 AM »
I will pray for you all!  BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!   :-* :shrug :-*

Offline NFQ

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
    • No Forbidden Questions
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #34 on: September 29, 2010, 11:39:30 AM »
Well on to the topic.  In my search for opinions and debate - this including speaking with good friends - I find that a common theme is "I am not religious, but I believe in God, or I believe there is indeed a higher being."  While I am not opposed to the idea that there is a possibility that a God could exist, I doubt that there is because there is absolutely no reason to believe that a 'God' is somewhere lurking in the 5Th dimension in my humble opinion.  I also recently heard an argument that Atheist incorrectly attribute the characteristics of God to Yahweh, Allah, etc... to find flaws in human constructs in 'God' as a means to argue to point out the absurdity in religion, spiritualism, or the effects of these beliefs on the world.  They say that 'God' cannot be defined or compared to humans, or human ideas.

So my thing is, if you are spiritual and believe in 'God',  simply believe that there is some higher power but reject religion, or omit large chunks from this religious text or that one to believe a few texts that sound right to you - where in the universe do you get your concept of what 'God' is?  Like when has 'God' ever revealed itself or what it is.  So how then can one believe in 'God' without religion.  There is no historical record or phenomenon where 'God' has been expressed in verifiable ways that we can comprehend what a higher power or 'God' is.  Is it not then the case  'God' in itself is a man made concept.  Even without the use of religion or a sacred text, it is only a idea that was created by man.  I don't understand the logic.  I just find this so frustrating because I can have a great conversation with people about why religion is harmful, dumb, contradictory and the 3rd, but when it comes to having a belief in a god, and feeling like some spiritual being is out there and possibly even guiding or waiting for you in the afterlife, then all bets are off.  Why can people see through religion, but then fail to understand that also as religion is man made, so is the concept of 'God' altogether. 

I can totally be missing something here.  But I am very open to discussion and your thoughts on this.

(bold is my own emphasis)

I think this is spot-on, Epiphany84.

There is so much social pressure to be a "person of faith," because that's what makes you a good, upstanding person in many people's eyes. They are brought up thinking that is the case. Then, when they grow up and find that their actual religion they were raised with doesn't hold up to the most basic logical inquiry, they have to twist it into something that they can claim is outside the realm of logic.

But you have hit upon the point exactly -- what does it mean to say that you believe in something that "cannot be defined"? If you literally can't say anything whatsoever about the deity you profess belief in, what does it mean to say you believe it exists? What exists? What does its existence require from us during our lives? We can't possibly know anything about it, or be able to react to it in any way. It's a totally meaningless statement.

You're not alone in your frustration.  :)
I don't think there is a single atheist on this site that would be unwilling to accept evidence that your God is real.  If you have it, bring it.

Offline xphobe

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5364
  • Darwins +12/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • the truth is out there
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #35 on: September 29, 2010, 12:14:02 PM »
But so many of these "spiritual" people are middle class westerners, employed, educated, highly privileged in global and historical terms.  Probably have enough to eat, a decent place to live, entertainment at your fingertips, the ability to travel widely, and communicate with people all over the world. No major threats to existence or daily survival. Even if some part of your life falls apart, there are usually some resources to rely on, in terms of family, friends, or social services to keep us from hitting absolute bottom. Not paradise, but certainly a fairly comfortable life.

Why do you need magic, too?

Everyone regardless of their socioeconomic status has stress and insecurity, which tend to lead people to look for irrational answers.  Perhaps this has some kind of survival value, analogous to when physical stress on a species causes a higher genetic mutation rate.  If our memes are mutating at an accelerated rate, the chances increase of at least some individuals finding an answer, and thus surviving.

There is a type of Christianity called "Prosperity Theology" that seems to have originated with Oral Roberts and the Pentecostals after WW2, but it's now found all over the US, primarily in evangelical circles.  The message seems to be that Jesus blesses his followers with material wealth.  Non-denominational megachurches typically fall into this category.

Seems like just another form of SPAG to me.  You've got wealth, you feel vaguely guilty about it, so you try to rationalize it by creating a religion that makes it all ok.
I stopped believing for a little while this morning. Journey is gonna be so pissed when they find out...

Offline nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6505
  • Darwins +848/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #36 on: September 29, 2010, 03:15:31 PM »
^^^^^This is pretty popular among black Protestant evangelicals. And most of them are not and never will be rich, but they get something out of thinking god will bless them with riches someday. Properity gospel is just the old pyramid scheme at best and a classic con job at worst.

I think my fellow black people are in desperate need of critical thinking skills, because the list of silly things we believe is endless. And it means blacks are very prone to con artists, including these so-called pastors leading the sheep to financial slaughter.

It is like people who play the lotto. They are  not going to win, but playing gives them the chance to dream big.  &)
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline xphobe

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5364
  • Darwins +12/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • the truth is out there
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #37 on: September 29, 2010, 03:42:54 PM »
I think my fellow black people are in desperate need of critical thinking skills, because the list of silly things we believe is endless.

fixed ;)   

It's not exclusively a black problem, although if there is a difference I suspect it's due to the schools.  We desperately need schools that teach kids how to think, instead of what to think.  That's why I say we need to start teaching the scientific method at an early age, and hammer it into them all the way through high school.  They may not know when the War of 1812 was fought, but they're damn well gonna know how to formulate a hypothesis and test it!
I stopped believing for a little while this morning. Journey is gonna be so pissed when they find out...

Offline Gimpy

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1986
  • Darwins +1/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • Are we there yet?
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #38 on: September 29, 2010, 03:57:29 PM »
. . . . but they're damn well gonna know how to formulate a hypothesis and test it!



You mean, you don't put the conclusion first, then try to work everything else to fit around it?
Not all those who wander are lost; some are buried in my backyard. . .

Offline xphobe

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5364
  • Darwins +12/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • the truth is out there
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #39 on: September 29, 2010, 04:09:52 PM »
You mean, you don't put the conclusion first, then try to work everything else to fit around it?

Well chYeaaah,  if the conclusion is the Bible is the inerrant word of God...
I stopped believing for a little while this morning. Journey is gonna be so pissed when they find out...

Offline nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6505
  • Darwins +848/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #40 on: September 29, 2010, 04:28:44 PM »
I think my fellow black people are in desperate need of critical thinking skills, because the list of silly things we believe is endless.

fixed ;)   

They may not know when the War of 1812 was fought, but they're damn well gonna know how to formulate a hypothesis and test it!

Was the War of 1812 in........1812?
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline xphobe

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5364
  • Darwins +12/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • the truth is out there
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #41 on: September 29, 2010, 05:00:34 PM »
Was the War of 1812 in........1812?

I wouldn't know.  I went to a public school.  Can I phone a friend?   :D
I stopped believing for a little while this morning. Journey is gonna be so pissed when they find out...

Offline TopolX

  • Graduate
  • ****
  • Posts: 267
  • Darwins +1/-7
  • Gender: Male
  • Back after a long mental illness.
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #42 on: September 29, 2010, 07:53:54 PM »
but they're damn well gonna know how to formulate a hypothesis and test it!

Woah woah woah. Number shuffling has been a proud Anglo Saxon tradition for centuries and it's why our economies are so powerful. Convincing people your country/firm is extremely investable, even when not has been the a major driving force in development. There will always be some who naturally understand scientific method so technology and science will still progress but teaching children it's wrong to be "economic with statistics" to support your conclusion will stick us right back into the dark ages.
If I don't agree with anyone am I invariably wrong?

Offline xphobe

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 5364
  • Darwins +12/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • the truth is out there
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #43 on: September 29, 2010, 08:34:54 PM »
so... we'll only progress if we keep our kids ignorant?  Never thought of it like that, but you're right.  If everyone were savvy, who would be left to buy all the junk mortgages and toxic assets?  PT Barnum wouldn't have become rich and famous if the rate of sucker births had been much lower than one per minute.
I stopped believing for a little while this morning. Journey is gonna be so pissed when they find out...

Offline Epiphany84

Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #44 on: October 01, 2010, 01:51:25 AM »
Well on to the topic.  In my search for opinions and debate - this including speaking with good friends - I find that a common theme is "I am not religious, but I believe in God, or I believe there is indeed a higher being."  While I am not opposed to the idea that there is a possibility that a God could exist, I doubt that there is because there is absolutely no reason to believe that a 'God' is somewhere lurking in the 5Th dimension in my humble opinion.  I also recently heard an argument that Atheist incorrectly attribute the characteristics of God to Yahweh, Allah, etc... to find flaws in human constructs in 'God' as a means to argue to point out the absurdity in religion, spiritualism, or the effects of these beliefs on the world.  They say that 'God' cannot be defined or compared to humans, or human ideas.

So my thing is, if you are spiritual and believe in 'God',  simply believe that there is some higher power but reject religion, or omit large chunks from this religious text or that one to believe a few texts that sound right to you - where in the universe do you get your concept of what 'God' is?  Like when has 'God' ever revealed itself or what it is.  So how then can one believe in 'God' without religion.  There is no historical record or phenomenon where 'God' has been expressed in verifiable ways that we can comprehend what a higher power or 'God' is.  Is it not then the case  'God' in itself is a man made concept.  Even without the use of religion or a sacred text, it is only a idea that was created by man.  I don't understand the logic.  I just find this so frustrating because I can have a great conversation with people about why religion is harmful, dumb, contradictory and the 3rd, but when it comes to having a belief in a god, and feeling like some spiritual being is out there and possibly even guiding or waiting for you in the afterlife, then all bets are off.  Why can people see through religion, but then fail to understand that also as religion is man made, so is the concept of 'God' altogether. 

I can totally be missing something here.  But I am very open to discussion and your thoughts on this.

(bold is my own emphasis)

I think this is spot-on, Epiphany84.

There is so much social pressure to be a "person of faith," because that's what makes you a good, upstanding person in many people's eyes. They are brought up thinking that is the case. Then, when they grow up and find that their actual religion they were raised with doesn't hold up to the most basic logical inquiry, they have to twist it into something that they can claim is outside the realm of logic.

but you have hit upon the point exactly -- what does it mean to say that you believe in something that "cannot be defined"? If you literally can't say anything whatsoever about the deity you profess belief in, what does it mean to say you believe it exists? What exists? What does its existence require from us during our lives? We can't possibly know anything about it, or be able to react to it in any way. It's a totally meaningless statement.

You're not alone in your frustration.  :)

 ;)    I just think like others have said, its the realization that religion is farce because logic will not let you accept all of the contradiction, but the inability to fully let go of the idea that there is something more.  By my own admission, I was on that slippery slope on my journey for a brief time - but my persistence I believe allowed me to let go of all of it.

Offline generousgeorge

  • Emergency Room
  • ****
  • Posts: 311
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #45 on: October 01, 2010, 08:42:54 AM »
"I just think like others have said, its the realization that religion is farce because logic will not let you accept all of the contradiction, but the inability to fully let go of the idea that there is something more." \

Unfortunately, there are millions of Christians who don't let that silly logic thing bother them or their "faith".  :shrug

Offline generousgeorge

  • Emergency Room
  • ****
  • Posts: 311
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
Re: Spiritual - not religious
« Reply #46 on: October 04, 2010, 09:51:35 PM »
Good plan!  &)