Please keep in mind, I am not here to "confront", or to convert, anyone; I am here to DIALOGUE--to share thoughts and ideas which in themselves may be poles apart from one another, in the spirit of good will (Agape Love).

BTW, over the years, I have never taken a fixed-position on matters of faith and belief. Sure, I have taken positions, but I have always kept my options open. Circumstances do alter cases.

For example, because of the way I was raised, I used to refer to God as, "You", "He" and "Him", "The Heavenly Father of Jesus"--a kind of masculine and super-being.

Now you all are witnesses to the new way I write the divine name, in my signature. I do this to avoid concretizing GØD. With the help of a scientist, it happened about a year ago. Over the years I have changed my mind about several things, and I probably will make more changes in the future.

If I ever become convinced that all life ends at death--and I am now 77--and that eternal life is a meaningless dream, or vision, I will become an atheist. But I will need to see the hard evidence. Has anyone got any?

Until then I am sure you will grant me the right to believe, to have faith, in what I, in the company of billions of others, feel is a real possibility--that life does extend into the future beyond death.

Of course, atheists have the right to believe otherwise. But, surely, without evidence does it not have to be admitted that it is a matter of BELIEF, OR FAITH? Are atheists able to avoid matters of faith and belief?

Who was it who said: "Consistency is the bugbear of the small mind." smile The Bible says that even God repented, changed his mind.

ABOUT GOOD AND EVIL
CORRECTION: Instead of Isaiah 64:7, it is Isaiah 45:7 where the prophet writes: "I form light and create darkness, I make weal and and create woe, I am the Lord who do all these things." (Revised Standard version. The King James version says, "I create evil..." (I am not a Bible thumper who thinks of it as infallible. I quote it like I would any document.)

THE CHOICE IS OUR TO ACCEPT OR REJECT
We are free to accept or reject the theology that follows:
Judaism, Christianity and Islam all have the same theology of the universe. All three believe there is an ultimate unity to the universe. To this ultimate unity they give the name which we translate as God. I call it GØD.

As my twelve-volume INTERPRETER'S BIBLE (Abingdon) Vol. 5, page 524 puts it: "God is the chief factor in everything that happens, favourable or unfavourable."..."The evil which God creates is not moral but physical, like disaster (cf. Amos 3:6 and 41:23. "Do good or evil.")"

Thankful that I am free to add my own thoughts and to put the above in my own words, generally speaking, because I reject any kind of dualism--Zoroastrian, Greek, whatever--I accept the total unity of the universe, or the cosmos--warts and all.
BTW, in THE REPUBLIC, II, p.379, Plato wrote as a dualist when he said, "God, if he is good, is not the author of all things...of the evil, other causes have to be discovered."

IMHO, dualists, like many theists, (including atheists)--not all--make the error of thinking of what I call GØD as an objective and personal being, separate and apart from us and the cosmos.

The Process Philosophy and Theology of Alfred North Whitehead, and others, IMO, have solved this problem. GØD is in the process of all existence. Human and thinking persons, collectively, are the personal expressions (sons and daughters), if they so choose, of GØD. Jesus declared, "I and the Father (creative power) are one..." In John 17:20, when he said, "That all may be one..." he goes on make known that oneness with God is goal of all humanity, if we choose.
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Edited by Revlgking (07/19/07 04:39 PM)
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G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org