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#26169 - 05/24/08 05:21 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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Thank you for the defining definitions.

I'm definitely not a nihilist!!

I will regard the suggestion that I am as merely fanciful rather than offensive, as being a non-nihilist I am happy, not despairing and choose to look on the bright side of life!

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#26173 - 05/24/08 10:46 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Ellis]
Revlgking Offline
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Originally Posted By: Ellis
Thank you for the defining definitions.

I'm definitely not a nihilist!!...
You're welcome, Ellis. I believes it always helps communication when we know what people are not. It helps even more when we know what they stand for, and are.

For example, I understand that most atheists (people without any belief in a God, or gods) believe that there is no kind of consciousness for them or anyone, in any way shape or form, beyond the death of the body. Life, for atheists, is strictly a physical phenomenon. Am I correct in understanding that this is what atheists believe?

Think of this: Everyday children are born who live only one day, or even less. If they are born to parents who dearly wanted a child it must be heartbreaking to such parents.

Of what value is a life that only lasts one day? Does it serve just to break the hearts of loving parents?
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26186 - 05/25/08 01:08 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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I do not know what atheists believe, I only know what I do and as far as I know there is no written formula for me to conform to.

One thing I will say-- if I were an all powerful presence or being I'd make sure that every child was loved, wanted and nurtured, and absolutely none of them would die of horrible painful conditions that mean suffering of the sort of proportion that I am (thankfully) unable to imagine. Actually I think you have hit on one of the greatest reasons for believing there is no such thing as any sort of god - or at least if there is such a phenomenon it is malevolent.

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#26189 - 05/25/08 02:28 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Ellis]
Revlgking Offline
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Quote:
Actually I think you have hit on one of the greatest reasons for believing there is no such thing as any sort of god - or at least if there is such a phenomenon it is malevolent.
But isn't saying there is no future and no opportunity, ever, more malevolent? As a unitheist--and here I have something in common with theists--I believe that, as part of the process, all things can, and will be redeemed, eventually.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26190 - 05/25/08 02:40 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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I just came across this:
Quote:
Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855) agreed with Kant that the existence of God
could not be proven by reason. However Kierkegaard did not think that it was
rational to believe in God, rather one should have faith in God even if this
seems to reason to be absurd. To put it another way reason has no place in
faith. God is beyond reason."

http://www.philosopher.org.uk/god.htm

So anything that is beyond reason, like faith, understanding their spiritual side, is simply beyond the atheist ability to understand.


This poses an interesting idea: Perhaps in the same way that some bright people have a mental block and find it difficult to reason, mathematically, atheists have a mental handicap--the inability to have faith. Perhaps this phenomenon needs to be studied and help offered.

BTW, I say: Because I accept the physical universe as part of GOD, I have reason for my faith. However, in exploring that which I intuit is beyond the physical universe I depend on faith more than I do reason.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26195 - 05/25/08 06:13 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Ellis]
redewenur Offline
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Registered: 02/14/07
Posts: 1840
Originally Posted By: Revlgking
However, in exploring that which I intuit is beyond the physical universe I depend on faith more than I do reason.

Clearly.

Originally Posted By: Ellis
I do not know what atheists believe, I only know what I do and as far as I know there is no written formula for me to conform to.

One thing I will say-- if I were an all powerful presence or being I'd make sure that every child was loved, wanted and nurtured, and absolutely none of them would die of horrible painful conditions that mean suffering of the sort of proportion that I am (thankfully) unable to imagine. Actually I think you have hit on one of the greatest reasons for believing there is no such thing as any sort of god - or at least if there is such a phenomenon it is malevolent.

Excellent post, Ellis. Live long and prosper. (You too, Rev)

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#26202 - 05/25/08 12:01 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: redewenur]
Revlgking Offline
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To curious and humane atheists and/or agnostics:
Do to think it is possible for a human being, or even any number of us, to become GOD-like, humane and saintly?
Wouldn't it be a nice thing if more and more of us chose to do so?

As Paul wrote to the Romans 1:7: "To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be Saints."

Saints are ordinary people who at least choose to live--whether they do so at all times is another question--as God-like sons and daughters in the service of humanity and the world.


Edited by Revlgking (05/25/08 01:19 PM)
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26203 - 05/25/08 03:34 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
odin1 Offline
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Registered: 04/13/08
Posts: 136
Loc: North Carolina, USA
Hello Rev,

I am not an atheist, but if I may I would answer your question from my point of view.

No. Not in this life. I don't think a human being can become God like. I believe there are good people. The problem I have with Saints is they are all catholic. Is the catholic religion the only one that has access to the throne of God?

Rev, like I said in a previous post-I believe we hold our own demons, it is a constant struggle with all of us. You know, the clerk makes a $20.00 mistake when you make a purchase. Do you give the money back or keep it? The next door neighbor's wife has been awful loose lateley. Do you have a fling, or do what the teachings tell you to do? We all have these tempatations and I believe God knows his creation and understands no saints are on Earth. But,--he gives us free choice here and the prize is when the body dies what is left moves to a higher state of conciousness that does not have the "animal" portion to contend with.

best regards,
odin1


Edited by odin1 (05/25/08 03:53 PM)
_________________________
People will forgive you for anything -but being right !
odin1



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#26205 - 05/25/08 08:31 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: odin1]
Revlgking Offline
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Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Odin, I think I see where you are coming from.

BTW, when I talk about being "God-like", or saintly, I am not talking about being absolutely perfect, in the now.

You mentioned the clerks mistake. You just reminded me: In 1964, I found a small box in a room in the church were I was the minister. The caretaker and I were the only ones in the building at the time. In the box was $1,500.00, in crisp 100 dollar bills--almost the price of new car in those days. I could have pocketed the money and no one would ever have known the difference. Keep in mind, I had no idea where the money came from and no theft was involved. All I had to do was keep quiet.

My conscience, because of the kind of life I intended to live, would not let me keep quiet. With some effort, I found out who owned the money. With a good conscience, I gave it back and accepted no reward. The person who lost the money was in deep need of it.

Am I a saint? Not yet, but I am working on it and I intend to keep working on it.

Let me put it this way: Is it your intention to be, on the road, on the way to becoming more and more humane?

Keep in mind that when Paul wrote to Rome it was long before the Church of Rome. IMO, Roman Catholicism grew out of Roman imperialism and did not enter history until after the emperor, Constantine, in the 4th. century.

Are you active in any church?
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26207 - 05/25/08 09:05 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Ellis]
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
Hiya Revl. Happy Sunday. Be back later....
Originally Posted By: Ellis
I do not know what atheists believe, I only know what I do and as far as I know there is no written formula for me to conform to.

One thing I will say-- if I were an all powerful presence or being I'd make sure that every child was loved, wanted and nurtured, and absolutely none of them would die of horrible painful conditions that mean suffering of the sort of proportion that I am (thankfully) unable to imagine. Actually I think you have hit on one of the greatest reasons for believing there is no such thing as any sort of god - or at least if there is such a phenomenon it is malevolent.


Ellis,
I think you're personalizing and subjectivizing too much. Sure, on a personal level, death, loss, and grief are not "good" things; but in the big picture (of Evolution, ...or G0d's Plan) these things are necessary, and can be seen as a beautiful sacrifice. Quoting Kahlil Gibran, "The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain."

...also, but unrelated....
When I listen to most religious folks, I've always felt like an atheist; but when I listen to the music of the spheres, the universe, I feel deeply theistic.
Now, knowing of the more fundamental bases of reality, and reality's illusory nature, I find it easy to let go of my preconceived notions and accept the notion for wider possibilities; and easily understand what religious folks have been talking about. There are so many more connections across reality than we are aware of in this three-dimensional spatial realm.
smile
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#26208 - 05/25/08 10:41 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: samwik]
odin1 Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 04/13/08
Posts: 136
Loc: North Carolina, USA
Hello Rev,

You mentioned "concience", a critical word for all of us. That little voice in the back of your mind that say's "you know that's wrong-now do the right thing". That struggle, you can call it good vs evil,god vs satan, ying-yang, whatever. It is my opinion that when you don't hear that voice anymore, you are lost. There are absolutes in this world, if you are an atheist, agnostic, christian or muslem. We live in a world with over 6 billion people there has to be a roadmap of life for us to go by or it is more choas that it is right now.

I am Baptist. I do not attend church, because I am like many other people, I make excuses and am lazy. I went to church as a youth and treaure everything I learned.

Like I have said before, I think the anger with religion is not really directed toward the religion, the anger is really with centuries of improper involvment from the churchs and religion gets the blame.

But Rev, one thing we should all remember, and I am going to make a comparison with Islam. Islam teaches about the same as christianity. Yet, with what happened on 9/11 all of these extremist Muslems that have memorized the Quaran, I know of none of them that has came out publically and condemned these terrorist and extremist for what they have done. And this is what really chaps peoples behind with organized religion. Now, you read my post weeks back about what has been done in the name of christianity. This is what hurts. I know there are a lot of good muslems, I know there are a lot of good christians, I know there are a lot good catholics, but you have to set an example to these folks that don't know that for what ever reason. In short, some of the religious leaders turn their head.

I think the problem needs to be faced and brought in the open, we need to clean out our closet. Rev, I think you are a good man and nothing I say is intended toward you, and please accept this as the truth. I'm just telling you what I think is factual. Consider this as a -- well "confession".

best regards,
odin1
_________________________
People will forgive you for anything -but being right !
odin1



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#26209 - 05/25/08 10:51 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: samwik]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
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Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Good points, Sam.

I like your comment about your being willing to let go of your, "preconceived notions".

One of the reasons I prefer dialogue over debate is: Debate is a zero sum game--someone has to lose. Dialogue is a win/win game. It helps us understand what our preconceived notions are.

Once this becomes apparent, we can move on to the kinds of notions, which are really possible, and of real value to everyone.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26211 - 05/26/08 12:21 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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Registered: 01/08/07
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"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain."

Sam (Don't read this if easily offended) I think this is the sort of sentimental twaddle you find on those shiny printed cards with cute kittens on them. I think you can learn from sorrow and you can certainly learn to experience joy again, but the experience of deep sorrow leaves a shadow that lasts forever and it will exist even in the presence of otherwise apparently complete happiness.

However when you say;---"when I listen to the music of the spheres, the universe, I feel deeply theistic"... I agree with you wholeheartedly. (Well maybe not theist but certainly deeply moved and awe-struck!)

The dilemma as I see it is that religious thought and tradition has inspired and condoned so much of art, poetry and literature it would be impossible to cut yourself off from so much that is important in our society. In my case I think I fall into the cultural christianity position (see an earlier post) which I think is very common. It is not, for instance, necessary to believe in God to enjoy Mozart's 'Requiem' or Bach's sacred music.


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#26216 - 05/26/08 07:06 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Ellis]
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
LOL. Gee, since being a teenager, that's been one of my favorite teachings. I don't think Gibran means that joy will obliterate the furrow of sorrow; just that the depth of a "shadow" can make the light of happiness that much brighter, and more precious.
....
Ellis,
In the above context, I used the word "theistic," but your, "deeply moved and awe-struck" is a much better and more descriptive synonym. I think it is that simple translation that allows me to understand and experience (perhaps only some of) what others mean when they say they "believe in...."
smile
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#26217 - 05/26/08 08:48 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: samwik]
samwik Offline
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Registered: 10/10/06
Posts: 1164
Loc: Colorado
...and aside from "mine and yours," let us not forget theirs.

Andy Rooney, musing on Memorial Day, Sunday Eve, May 25, 2008.

...after talking about how he celebrates the memory of his fallen friends on all days; and not more so on Memorial Day.

"I wish we could dedicate Memorial Day not to the memory of those who have died at war, but to the idea of saving the lives of the young people who are going to die in the future if we don't find some new way, some new religion maybe, that takes war out of our lives. That would be a Memorial Day worth celebrating." -Andy Rooney

Hey Andy, ...maybe a religion that stressed the cooperation required for implementing stewardship, over the competition engendered by asserting dominion....
We now have the skills, resources, and understanding to manage and re-create the Earth. Maybe that's what the old saying about, "the meek shall inherit the Earth," means. wink
~~~
cool
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#26229 - 05/26/08 10:20 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: samwik]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
Posts: 2311
Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
For some time now I have been working on a rhyme expressing the awe I feel when I think of the cosmos and my connection with it:

We are one with all that is;
One with the land, the sky and seas.
One with the earth, the moon, sun, stars,
The planets and the galaxies.
We can be one with all that is,
And though it may seem odd:
All live in the eternal now,
Where all there is, is GOD.

_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#26231 - 05/27/08 12:27 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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Registered: 01/08/07
Posts: 1490
Loc: Australia
I like your suggestion for a new direction. Co-operation v. competition.

I had no idea who Andy Rooney was so I googled him. He sounds interesting! What an amazing statement too. That he dared to say it on such a day shows some character. We have had ANZAC Day in April here and recently we seem to stress the patriotic jingoism and forget that real, often unbelievably young, people died there. They call it sacrifice- but I think it is the mothers and fathers who made the sacrifice then, and still are asked to today. One of the songs from a previous era sums it up for me... The Universal Soldier. I think Rooney may agree with the song's sentiment.



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#26234 - 05/27/08 02:58 AM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
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Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
And speaking of the need for a new approach, just today (CBC Radio) I heard an interview with Howard Zinn. He defended those who want to make Memorial Day not just a day to glorify war. More and more people are beginning to come to their senses and realize that war is a racket owned an operated by the powerful few and of little or no value to the vast majority.

Finn is the author of
A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES
See Wikipedia:
Quote:
A People's History of the United States is a nonfiction book by American historian and political scientist Howard Zinn, in which he seeks to present American history through the eyes of those rarely heard in mainstream histories.

A People's History, though originally a dissident work, has become a major success and was a runner-up in 1980 for the National Book Award. It has been adopted for reading in some high schools and colleges across the United States and has been frequently revised, with the most recent edition covering events through 2003.

In 2003, Zinn was awarded the Prix des Amis du Monde Diplomatique for the French version of this book, Une histoire populaire des Etats-Unis. Over one million copies have been sold.

A reviewer for the The New York Times suggested the book should be "required reading" for students. In a 1998 interview prior to a speaking engagement at the University of Georgia, Zinn told Catherine Parayre he had set "quiet revolution" as his goal for writing A People's History. "Not a revolution in the classical sense of a seizure of power, but rather from people beginning to take power from within the institutions.

In the workplace, the workers would take power to control the conditions of their lives." In 2004, Zinn published a companion volume with Anthony Arnove, titled Voices of a People's History of the United States. The book parallels A People's History in structure, supplementing it with material from frequently overlooked primary sources.
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#27211 - 07/20/08 08:28 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Revlgking]
Anonymous
Unregistered


For me, the idea that any form of awareness is extinguished upon one's 'death' is absurd. The notion of nothingness simply cannot be.
The universe and existence in general are only 'real' because of the fact we have awareness of it. To the best of our knowledge, awareness requires a 'life-form' to accommodate it. Therefore, without 'life', there is no awareness and hence, no universe. without life, one could say that there is then, 'nothingness'. So, for anything to exist, there must be awareness of it. It seems a paradox but is really so simple.

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#27212 - 07/20/08 09:56 PM Re: About Death and Dying, MIne and Yours: Thinkin [Re: Anonymous]
Revlgking Offline
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Registered: 01/17/07
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Loc: markham (Thornhill), Ontario, ...
Quote:
For me, the idea that any form of awareness is extinguished upon one's 'death' is absurd.
Anon, I agree. Now, what do you think happens after death?
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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