Author Topic: I've got too many questions  (Read 1754 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Lisa

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
I've got too many questions
« on: April 29, 2011, 11:05:22 AM »
I was raised in a home where we celebrated Christmas by exchanging gifts.  When I was in the 6th grade, my parents started taking my older sister and me to a Methodist church.  I was Baptised and Confirmed.  I think I believed in God.  I felt like the Universe had to have started from something.  I never did really buy the story of Jesus or the Old or New Testaments as I felt like they were written by men, not a God.  I thought Jesus was probably a good man who was born to a woman who had been raped or had had sex outside marriage.  When I was in my 20's, I tried to read the Bible, but quickly lost interest as I found it full of useless information to me. 

When I was 20, I experienced the death of my newborn daughter.  I wondered how God could let this happen.  I was extremely angry with him.  I looked at a milk carton one day, with the picture of the missing child on it, and said to myself, God realized that I could not handle the disappearance of my daughter, so he took her to heaven instead.  There are worse things than the death of a child I told myself.  So I forgave God.

I realized I needed to keep God and heaven real so that I could be reunited with my daughter who died and I didn't hold. 

Last November 25th, my grandson was born, my first grandchild, and through a combination of poor communication and an overactive imagination, I was of the belief that he was dead.  I could not even ask how god could do this.  All I could do was renounce god. 

Now, I could talk to my husband, daughter, or parents about this, but they are all atheist/agnostic. 

Then, an online friend/acquaintance, died of bipolar.  And I just couldn't believe in a god anymore that allows people to suffer so much. 

Why are so many people starving in the world?

Why is there so much pain and misery?

Why are we having wars?

I guess I just needed to come to the realization that god doesn't exist on my own.

Religion:  Atheist
Hobbies:  Not collecting stamps
Accomplishments:  Not understanding the Crebs Cycle

Offline Jezebel

  • Graduate
  • ****
  • Posts: 445
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2011, 11:40:26 AM »
One of the hardest parts of "letting go of god" for me was realizing that suffering didn't have a "reason" any more than a swatted fly that buzzes around for a bit until it dies. It was terribly hard to accept that there wasn't SOME ultimate balance, that there wasn't more to it all than living, surviving, and dying. I think that's especially hard in context of losing someone you love; not only do we want them to still "be" somewhere, somehow, it's incredibly difficult to accept that this huge, huge pain we feel is just part of what it means to exist. Without god there is no one to get angry at, or to have hope in-- there's no way to cope, it seems, because in a godless universe all we can do is accept, and that is so hard to do. Somehow suffering is worse when it's "meaningless," although I think "meaningless" is ultimately the wrong word. Ultimately I think suffering is meaningful on an individual level (the same as joy, or any other life experience) and we have to accept that it is sufficient for it to be meaningful to US.

I don't think my pain and suffering is any different from that of any other relatively intelligent creature, like an elephant, or a dog-- we know they mourn. For all I know it's not all that different from an insect; pain is part of survival, so anything that has survived has to have some capacity for it, right? If there's no "point" to it, no "destination" or "plan"-- if we're not part of something larger than ourselves-- there's no way to justify or rationalize the pain. I think it's very much a part of being human to try to "understand" and to cope with things through understanding. If there's nothing TO understand... ?

We are animals. Animals also have "war" (although some people will say they don't, but they certainly do fight over resources and territory, which is not that far removed from what we do and why). Animals have children and lose them. Animals are wounded, and suffer. Animals have instincts they don't necessarily understand or are aware of. We may be very intelligent animals with complex brains, but if you put us in our rightful place in the animal kingdom and look at human experience as an animal experience-- there is nothing "special" about our experience.

Except personally. On a personal, independent level, everything we experience is special to us. We are like the macro and micro universe; on a macro scale we're no different from any other living thing but on a micro scale we are absolutely unique. We can find meaning in our own experience because it is happening to us. We don't NEED it to be any bigger than that. Compassion lets us see that others suffer the way we do, and feel the same horror at their suffering as our own, but in terms of what suffering means-- it is only an inevitable part of existing. Pain is an evolutionary tool. We feel pain because without pain we would not have survived. Survival and existence are the reasons for life. Life doesn't philosophize.

I do think this is something people have to learn to cope with on their own. Quite honestly, I still have moments where I wonder if existing is even worth the suffering. I guess some people would call that nihilism. Or Buddhism. But since I'm already here, and death is inevitable, and I have a survival instinct whether I like it or not... I do the best with what I have. In the grand scheme of things nothing I do matters, but in MY scheme of things nothing matters more.
String1248: "We Christian most certainly can use the bible to prove that what the bible says is true because I know that everything that comes from it is true. Christians confirm scripture with other scripture all the time."

Offline Phenix

  • Undergraduate
  • ***
  • Posts: 130
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2011, 01:20:30 PM »
Please accept my humble condolences on your loss. I can think of no greater pain than the loss of a child.

It wasn't personal tragedy that changed my mind. It was curiousity and research in cosmology, nuclear physics, and quantum mechanics. No, I am not school trained or working in any of these fields. What I eventually concluded was our existence did not depend on some god lighting a match, it could happen all on its own thanks to randomness of the universe. That was very comforting to me.

Now I can look at the senseless suffering and slaughter in the world and be assured that randomness continues. In my personal life there has been tragedy and I'm living with the consequences, but I ask myself why should I be immune to the impersonal forces of nature. So without the randomness that can lead to bad (and good) things happening, we could not exist. Probably very bad science, but it makes a lot more sense than the bible and all the superstitious claptrap ever did. If you live under a volcano, sooner or later you will get burned.

I am happy not to have to twist myself into knots trying to rationalize events to god. It just never worked for long. It doesn't lessen the personal pain when tragedy strikes, but it frees me from the torment of asking why.
Science is a verb.

Offline Lisa

  • Freshman
  • *
  • Posts: 16
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Female
  • WWGHA Member
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2011, 01:16:19 PM »
Thank you Phenix and Jezebel.  Sorry it took me so long to reply.  Your responses gave me a lot to think about.  They provided me with a sense of relief if that makes any sense, and I appreciate that. 
Religion:  Atheist
Hobbies:  Not collecting stamps
Accomplishments:  Not understanding the Crebs Cycle

Offline a1legwonder

  • Novice
  • Posts: 2
  • Darwins +0/-0
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2011, 08:11:53 AM »
Let me start with this right now: We are not on this Earth to go to the park and have a picnic. This life is not meant to be easy. Every struggle is meant to test. The Bible says that God is the provider. He is the Master and his children are his slaves. The problem though is that people tell God that they don't want Him. That they can live with out Him. We as humans can only do so much for ourselves. God does  want quality and quantity when it comes to His children but we are given freedom of choice. I have seen Homeless become saved, earn jobs, and live in houses. I have seen those turn from God and destroy themselves with drugs. Think about this. If the world was completely nice and perfect why would we need God? God wants us to be with Him but true love is giving the freedom of choice. I do not know why your friend died but did you expect the people around you to live forever? You must not forget that the world is so terrible because of us. God does not make the world terrible, we do. If you renounce God then what do you believe in? That matter created itself, that the cosmos always existed? You must read the entire Bible for organized religion is wrong. That is where truth lies and yes men wrote it but God is the author.  Atheist will say this is wrong. The vast majority of Christians do not even understand the Bible to its full worth. You must separate yourself from the world and dance on Vaseline.

Offline Azdgari

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 12552
  • Darwins +301/-32
  • Gender: Male
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2011, 08:14:55 AM »
To whom is the above paragraph[1] addressed?
 1. I use the term loosely.
I have not encountered any mechanical malfunctioning in my spirit.  It works every single time I need it to.

Offline Ambassador Pony

  • You keep what you kill.
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 6858
  • Darwins +71/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • illuminatus
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2011, 08:19:37 AM »
1legwonder,

Aside from your post being against our "no preaching" rule. It is useless as it is one big baseless assertion. Do you understand why this is useless?

At any rate, consider this an informal warning about such behaviour. If you want to mentally masturbate, find an appropriate venue. 

You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline pianodwarf

  • Global Moderator
  • ******
  • Posts: 4371
  • Darwins +208/-6
  • Gender: Male
  • Je bois ton lait frappĂ©
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2011, 08:31:56 AM »
Let me start with this right now:

{snip collection of logical fallacies and baseless assertions}

I will respond to this if and when you demonstrate that you intend to actually participate on this forum and not just make the one post and take off.  In my experience here at WWGHA with seeing this kind of thing, it's actually more likely than not that you won't even be back to read this.  I'll be pleasantly surprised if I turn out to be wrong.
[On how kangaroos could have gotten back to Australia after the flood]:  Don't kangaroos skip along the surface of the water? --Kenn

Offline plethora

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3457
  • Darwins +60/-1
  • Gender: Male
  • Metalhead, Family Man, IT Admin & Anti-Theist \m/
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2011, 09:08:42 AM »
The Bible says that God is the provider. He is the Master and his children are his slaves.

... and you're okay with being forced into slavery by this god? 'cause I know I wouldn't be if this were actually true.

Quote
The problem though is that people tell God that they don't want Him. That they can live with out Him. We as humans can only do so much for ourselves. God does  want quality and quantity when it comes to His children but we are given freedom of choice.

I see... and do those African children who live painful, disease ridden lives and die before reaching puberty have freedom of choice? No, they don't, do they?

Quote
If the world was completely nice and perfect why would we need God?

Heaven is supposed to be nice and perfect and eternal. Why does heaven need god then?

What a weak argument.

Quote
God wants us to be with Him but true love is giving the freedom of choice.

... do children who are raped by priests have freedom of choice when they are being raped? Where's your god then? (hint: he doesn't actually exist).

Quote
You must not forget that the world is so terrible because of us. God does not make the world terrible, we do.

What about natural disasters? The 2004 tsunami killed 250,000 people including innocent children, women and men. If you believe in god then he allowed this to happen which makes him a genocidal bastard.

... and about the homeless... the Haiti earthquake left about a million people homeless. If there is a god then this is his fucking fault isn't it?

Quote
If you renounce God then what do you believe in? That matter created itself, that the cosmos always existed?

I accept the general scientific consensus that the known universe started at an event called the Big Bang. What, if anything, caused this event is unknown and I accept our lack of knowledge in this respect.

I don't believe in fairy tails that make no sense, like you do.

Quote
You must read the entire Bible for organized religion is wrong.

I have. Most of the atheist on this forum have read the entire bible. It is a primitive, barbaric, savage and cruel book written by primitive, barbaric, savage and cruel men.

Quote
That is where truth lies and yes men wrote it but God is the author.

Prove it.
The truth doesn't give a shit about our feelings.

Offline screwtape

  • The Great Red Dragon
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 12682
  • Darwins +709/-28
  • Gender: Male
  • Karma mooch
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #9 on: August 09, 2011, 09:21:40 AM »
wow.  This is the most densely packed block of stupid I've seen in a while...

Every struggle is meant to test.

why does an omniscient being need to test us?  Does it not already know the answers?

He is the Master and his children are his slaves.

A god whose "children" are really slaves.  Interesting.  Creepy.

The problem though is that people tell God that they don't want Him.

Why would slaves want to remain under the yoke of the "master"?

God does  want quality and quantity when it comes to His children slaves...

Ah ah.  Not children.  Slaves. Corrected.

...but we are given freedom of choice.

Uh, not if we're slaves. 

If the world was completely nice and perfect why would we need God?

And?  Why wouldn't god set up a world where we could be independent and not need him?  How would that be bad?  Imagine a human father making his children dependent on him for their whole lives.  Shitty parent, right?  And wouldn't that give us an actual choice about god?  If we need god, then how is not chosing god a viable option?  That is like chosing not to breath.


God does not make the world terrible, we do.

A god that treats us like slaves and makes us incapable of existence without him?  The way you describe it, god does make the world terrible.

If you renounce God then what do you believe in?

My wife, my family, the NY Yankees, puppies, good ice cream, honor, dignity, ethics.  Lots of things more sensible than a cosmic slavelord. 

You must read the entire Bible for organized religion is wrong.

That's just stupid.

Links:
Rules
Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Offline velkyn

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 15420
  • Darwins +169/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • You're wearing the juice, aren't you?"
Re: I've got too many questions
« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2011, 02:04:10 PM »
Let me start with this right now: We are not on this Earth to go to the park and have a picnic. This life is not meant to be easy. Every struggle is meant to test. The Bible says that God is the provider. He is the Master and his children are his slaves.
Nice to see the sycophants are still around. 
"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/