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Guest Perfect Insanity

I'm Completely Lost...

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Guest confused idiot

I appreciate all of your responses. I was going to try to directly reply to all of you in one single post, but I'm not sure exactly how to do that. I'm new to all this.

 

Anyway, like I said previously, I still don't see how the evolutionary process could have even started without some sort of higher power. Even if it all started from one single cell, where did the cell come from? Even with that said, I'm still skeptic about a lot of religious things... If the truth is supposed to set free, why does it bring depression, anxiety, anger, confusion, and hopelessness? Something is not quite right. I need to study evolution, and maybe look at the claims of other religions. I'm particularly interested in looking at the Koran and it's supposedly fulfilled prophecies.

 

Firstly, I assure you, you're not an idiot as you put it. Curiosity is part and parcel of being a person. You believe that God created man, then why would he give you the power to dare question him as you have? See what I'm getting at? This was one of the main reasons that I lost what little grasp I had on faith to begin with. No such creator, no such Celestial Dictator (Quote from Hitchens) would empower you with the ability to question his motives, his reasons, lest his existence! What I'm trying to get at here is that curiosity is okay, and it doesn't make you an idiot. It is because of curiosity that we have modern medicine, that kind of "Let's mix these two chemicals together and just see what happens" attitude is what got us to where we are today. So that's your name taken care of! Now then...

 

The argument over evolution will continue as long as the "it had to have come from SOMEWHERE" question exists. As someone who has little scientific knowledge, I can't really argue the case for evolution beyond my own opinions: Religion has the Bible. We have two thousand years or so of evidence, theories, thoughts, and whatnot suggesting that all was not created in 7 days, and in actual fact, things are still being created and will continue to do so as long as time exists. When you speak of investigating other religions, namely Islam, I would warn you against such a thing. Make no mistake, I am not prejudiced in any way against practitioners of Islam, Judaism, Christianity, or anything else, BUT, I don't think searching any other religion that is essentially the same as your current one is the answer. I think that you are desperately clawing at any chance you have to hold onto faith of some sort. This is the point where I would say that you need to start looking outside faith, outside religion, and outside what you've been told so far for answers. No 'supposedly fulfilled prophecies' are going to make you feel any better, because such prophecies are just as mindless as Evangelists claiming that we're in the end-times every time a Democrat is elected to the White House.

 

Look outside your spectrum of belief. Look outside faith. Read Dawkins, read Harris, Hitchens, Assimov, Barker - they're all good. You can't go wrong. I wish you luck. Don't ever let faith stand in your way of happiness. Happiness is human nature that is dictated by you - not someone or something else.

 

I just want to go ahead and make it clear that when I say I might look at some other religions, I don't mean to try and find hope in them. I mean look at them, their prophecies, etc. so maybe I can start seeing my own religion a bit more objectively.

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Guest Valkyrie0010

I appreciate all of your responses. I was going to try to directly reply to all of you in one single post, but I'm not sure exactly how to do that. I'm new to all this.

 

Anyway, like I said previously, I still don't see how the evolutionary process could have even started without some sort of higher power. Even if it all started from one single cell, where did the cell come from? Even with that said, I'm still skeptic about a lot of religious things... If the truth is supposed to set free, why does it bring depression, anxiety, anger, confusion, and hopelessness? Something is not quite right. I need to study evolution, and maybe look at the claims of other religions. I'm particularly interested in looking at the Koran and it's supposedly fulfilled prophecies.

 

Firstly, I assure you, you're not an idiot as you put it. Curiosity is part and parcel of being a person. You believe that God created man, then why would he give you the power to dare question him as you have? See what I'm getting at? This was one of the main reasons that I lost what little grasp I had on faith to begin with. No such creator, no such Celestial Dictator (Quote from Hitchens) would empower you with the ability to question his motives, his reasons, lest his existence! What I'm trying to get at here is that curiosity is okay, and it doesn't make you an idiot. It is because of curiosity that we have modern medicine, that kind of "Let's mix these two chemicals together and just see what happens" attitude is what got us to where we are today. So that's your name taken care of! Now then...

 

The argument over evolution will continue as long as the "it had to have come from SOMEWHERE" question exists. As someone who has little scientific knowledge, I can't really argue the case for evolution beyond my own opinions: Religion has the Bible. We have two thousand years or so of evidence, theories, thoughts, and whatnot suggesting that all was not created in 7 days, and in actual fact, things are still being created and will continue to do so as long as time exists. When you speak of investigating other religions, namely Islam, I would warn you against such a thing. Make no mistake, I am not prejudiced in any way against practitioners of Islam, Judaism, Christianity, or anything else, BUT, I don't think searching any other religion that is essentially the same as your current one is the answer. I think that you are desperately clawing at any chance you have to hold onto faith of some sort. This is the point where I would say that you need to start looking outside faith, outside religion, and outside what you've been told so far for answers. No 'supposedly fulfilled prophecies' are going to make you feel any better, because such prophecies are just as mindless as Evangelists claiming that we're in the end-times every time a Democrat is elected to the White House.

 

Look outside your spectrum of belief. Look outside faith. Read Dawkins, read Harris, Hitchens, Assimov, Barker - they're all good. You can't go wrong. I wish you luck. Don't ever let faith stand in your way of happiness. Happiness is human nature that is dictated by you - not someone or something else.

 

I just want to go ahead and make it clear that when I say I might look at some other religions, I don't mean to try and find hope in them. I mean look at them, their prophecies, etc. so maybe I can start seeing my own religion a bit more objectively.

Dont leave a avenue untouched

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I just want to go ahead and make it clear that when I say I might look at some other religions, I don't mean to try and find hope in them. I mean look at them, their prophecies, etc. so maybe I can start seeing my own religion a bit more objectively.

Dont leave a avenue untouched

I agree wholeheartedly, and this comes from someone who is not only a non-christian, but a non-theist as well. There is value in examining the claims, beliefs, and history of other religions, as well as how religions fit in together.

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Hi confused. You sound a lot loike me. But you are far from being an idiot. It is okay to question things, and one of the best questions is why does faith produce such soul crushing depression in some of us? Some people cruise through life in a fairly shallow fantasy, it is easy for them to believe the things they are told without question. They dont really want to go into anything in depth, its easier not to think or feel. Someone sells them a template of who they should be and they accept it.

 

Then there are the rest of who struggle with the big questions for which there are a thousand million answers out there, but they are someone else's answers, not ours. I was a christian for over 35 years, maybe on some levels I still am. I realise now it is love I beleive in, the priciples that I read jesus as standing for, but seriously I find no trace of them in what passes for christianity now.

 

I have wasted so many years of my life in anxiety and depression because the questions occupied too much of my thought time. Those of us who are thoughtful and sensitive and honest have to come to apoint where we question things. We have a brain to use, not to be hoodwinked by religion.

 

Who are you really inside confused? What are the things that are important to you, right down in the depths of your being? That is what matters.

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Guest confused idiot

Hi confused. You sound a lot loike me. But you are far from being an idiot. It is okay to question things, and one of the best questions is why does faith produce such soul crushing depression in some of us? Some people cruise through life in a fairly shallow fantasy, it is easy for them to believe the things they are told without question. They dont really want to go into anything in depth, its easier not to think or feel. Someone sells them a template of who they should be and they accept it.

 

Then there are the rest of who struggle with the big questions for which there are a thousand million answers out there, but they are someone else's answers, not ours. I was a christian for over 35 years, maybe on some levels I still am. I realise now it is love I beleive in, the priciples that I read jesus as standing for, but seriously I find no trace of them in what passes for christianity now.

 

I have wasted so many years of my life in anxiety and depression because the questions occupied too much of my thought time. Those of us who are thoughtful and sensitive and honest have to come to apoint where we question things. We have a brain to use, not to be hoodwinked by religion.

 

Who are you really inside confused? What are the things that are important to you, right down in the depths of your being? That is what matters.

 

Honestly, the things I'm struggling with (about Christianity) aren't really because of moral issues. They're not really about the way things went down in the Old Testament (though they are to an extent). It's not really because I want to be deemed a sinner, or consider myself in wilfull rebellion against God. My biggest problem with it is because it seems so.... wimpy. It seems like Jesus commands his followers to let people walk all over them. Turning the other cheek, gentleness, meekness, giving to those who ask, etc. I could be wrong, but all of that seems to go against masculinity, which just makes me depressed. Not only that, but even if that isn't the case, many aspects of it seem downright boring, and just about all of it is confusing to the point where it will drive you insane just thinking about it. There are so many interpretations of most of the Bible that I really don't think it's possible to know you're right.

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Guest confused idiot

Also, by the way, I didn't mean to imply that any of you left the faith because of moral issues, or because you wanted to be "sinful". I apologize if that's how it looks, because that's not what I meant at all.

 

Sorry for the double post, but I just wanted to make that clear.

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Honestly, the things I'm struggling with (about Christianity) aren't really because of moral issues. They're not really about the way things went down in the Old Testament (though they are to an extent). It's not really because I want to be deemed a sinner, or consider myself in wilfull rebellion against God. My biggest problem with it is because it seems so.... wimpy. It seems like Jesus commands his followers to let people walk all over them. Turning the other cheek, gentleness, meekness, giving to those who ask, etc. I could be wrong, but all of that seems to go against masculinity, which just makes me depressed. Not only that, but even if that isn't the case, many aspects of it seem downright boring, and just about all of it is confusing to the point where it will drive you insane just thinking about it. There are so many interpretations of most of the Bible that I really don't think it's possible to know you're right.

For me, the appearances of religion are only window dressing. Is it true or not? That is the difficult question that means everything to me.

 

Personally, I think that one should decide for themselves how they want to interact with others. Bad behavior reaps bad reputation, and good behavior reaps a good reputation. As for masculinity, there is a place for compromise - when victory is Pyrrhic victory and the costs of continued confrontation outweigh the benefits. Likewise, letting someone have something that you don't value costs you nothing.

 

As with most moral decisions, however, the "best way" to approach a problem should be decided based on the circumstances surrounding the problem and the people involved rather than setting some arbitrary pattern of behavior that is always best.

 

Sometimes you gotta kick some ass, sometimes you gotta take it in the ass (proverbially).

 

Most people pick the parts of the bible that support what they already believe. Hence there are many interpretations from the many many contradictions.

 

One problem is that when people justify what they do based on biblical passages, they tend to think in absolutes. They are absolutely right, and if you contradict their interpretation you are a heretic, or blasphemous, or against god...

 

When you get down to it, it's just their opinion.

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Welcome to the dark side, Confused Idiot. Based on the questions you're asking, I don't think you could fully embrace christianity at this point if you WANTED TO. 'Cause the answers to your questions just aren't there. As I'm sure you've noticed by now, christian answers to the Hard Questions boil down to interpretation, speculation, tradition, threats, and discouraging the questions from being asked in the first place.

 

Personally, when I broke up with Jesus (I dumped HIM- he didn't dump me...), I found the simple admission of "I don't know" to be pretty liberating. It's something that lots of christians CAN'T admit to. I don't know where the universe came from, how life began, etc... all I can do is compare competing theories and/or come up with my own. So even though I have doubts about the Big Bang, autobiogenesis, and some of the details of evolution- these theories all strike me as more plausible than an invisible-magic-man-in-the-sky... though not nearly as convenient. Claiming God as a first cause doesn't really answer anything- it just side-steps the question.

 

'Cause if GodDidIt, then where did God come from? The answer: He's just magic!

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Guest confused idiot

Welcome to the dark side, Confused Idiot. Based on the questions you're asking, I don't think you could fully embrace christianity at this point if you WANTED TO. 'Cause the answers to your questions just aren't there. As I'm sure you've noticed by now, christian answers to the Hard Questions boil down to interpretation, speculation, tradition, threats, and discouraging the questions from being asked in the first place.

 

Personally, when I broke up with Jesus (I dumped HIM- he didn't dump me...), I found the simple admission of "I don't know" to be pretty liberating. It's something that lots of christians CAN'T admit to. I don't know where the universe came from, how life began, etc... all I can do is compare competing theories and/or come up with my own. So even though I have doubts about the Big Bang, autobiogenesis, and some of the details of evolution- these theories all strike me as more plausible than an invisible-magic-man-in-the-sky... though not nearly as convenient. Claiming God as a first cause doesn't really answer anything- it just side-steps the question.

 

'Cause if GodDidIt, then where did God come from? The answer: He's just magic!

 

I can probably embrace it, but not with a pure heart, which defeats the purpose. Jesus said he'd rather we be cold than lukewarm, right?

 

I may not can find these answers within Christianity, but I'm pretty sure I can't find them anywhere else either. I find that outside of Christianity, there are bigger questions without answers. I don't think any of us will ever have many, if any, of these "answers". Even if we did, it's impossible to know for sure that you're right in your beliefs. With that said, what's the point in believing anything?

 

No matter what the case, I've made the decision to be 100% honest with myself. If I start to believe that there's no God, it will only be because I believe that's what the evidence leads to. At this point, that's not the case. But what do I know?

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I can probably embrace it, but not with a pure heart, which defeats the purpose. Jesus said he'd rather we be cold than lukewarm, right?

 

That's exactly the quandary I found myself in. At one point, I realized that I had doubts and could not simply choose to believe something that just didn't make sense to me. And if god was all he was cracked up to be- then there was no point in faking it.

 

It's something that I've discussed with quite a few christians, and I can never come to any satisfactory agreement with them. I just can't CHOOSE to believe something... not truthfully or sincerely. It really isn't a choice IMO. But lots of people disagree with me on this point.

 

I may not can find these answers within Christianity, but I'm pretty sure I can't find them anywhere else either. I find that outside of Christianity, there are bigger questions without answers. I don't think any of us will ever have many, if any, of these "answers". Even if we did, it's impossible to know for sure that you're right in your beliefs. With that said, what's the point in believing anything?

 

You'll get no argument from me on this. Christianity offers a kind of certainty without proof that you just won't find outside of religion. If you're willing to put in the time to read up on assorted scientific explanations, you'll find plenty of proof- but little certainty. Personally, I tend to believe most scientific explanations of the 'big questions'- and I see them as a work in progress: the best answers we have *right now*. Doesn't mean they're absolutely true, but a much more convincing (to me), repeatable, and data-driven case can be made for evolution, the big bang, etc. than for the alternative: a magic-man-in-the-sky.

 

It works for me- can't guarantee it'll work for you.

 

 

No matter what the case, I've made the decision to be 100% honest with myself. If I start to believe that there's no God, it will only be because I believe that's what the evidence leads to. At this point, that's not the case. But what do I know?

 

And that's why I just don't think you can remain a christian. Best I can tell, to BE a christian, one has to meet one of a few conditions. You have to either:

 

1. be ignorant of history and science (willfully or otherwise)

 

or

 

2. NOT be introspective and honest with oneself.

 

 

You strike me as a pretty smart buy, Idiot. And if you're willing to do some research and be honest with yourself, then I just don't think christianity will withstand such scrutiny. It didn't for me, anyhow.

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Guest confused idiot

I can probably embrace it, but not with a pure heart, which defeats the purpose. Jesus said he'd rather we be cold than lukewarm, right?

 

That's exactly the quandary I found myself in. At one point, I realized that I had doubts and could not simply choose to believe something that just didn't make sense to me. And if god was all he was cracked up to be- then there was no point in faking it.

 

It's something that I've discussed with quite a few christians, and I can never come to any satisfactory agreement with them. I just can't CHOOSE to believe something... not truthfully or sincerely. It really isn't a choice IMO. But lots of people disagree with me on this point.

 

I may not can find these answers within Christianity, but I'm pretty sure I can't find them anywhere else either. I find that outside of Christianity, there are bigger questions without answers. I don't think any of us will ever have many, if any, of these "answers". Even if we did, it's impossible to know for sure that you're right in your beliefs. With that said, what's the point in believing anything?

 

You'll get no argument from me on this. Christianity offers a kind of certainty without proof that you just won't find outside of religion. If you're willing to put in the time to read up on assorted scientific explanations, you'll find plenty of proof- but little certainty. Personally, I tend to believe most scientific explanations of the 'big questions'- and I see them as a work in progress: the best answers we have *right now*. Doesn't mean they're absolutely true, but a much more convincing (to me), repeatable, and data-driven case can be made for evolution, the big bang, etc. than for the alternative: a magic-man-in-the-sky.

 

It works for me- can't guarantee it'll work for you.

 

 

No matter what the case, I've made the decision to be 100% honest with myself. If I start to believe that there's no God, it will only be because I believe that's what the evidence leads to. At this point, that's not the case. But what do I know?

 

And that's why I just don't think you can remain a christian. Best I can tell, to BE a christian, one has to meet one of a few conditions. You have to either:

 

1. be ignorant of history and science (willfully or otherwise)

 

or

 

2. NOT be introspective and honest with oneself.

 

 

You strike me as a pretty smart buy, Idiot. And if you're willing to do some research and be honest with yourself, then I just don't think christianity will withstand such scrutiny. It didn't for me, anyhow.

 

Hmm.... I don't know. Like I said, I'll go in the direction that I believe the evidence points. I'll try not to be too biased one way or the other and continue to read up on some of this.

 

Also, I think this is worth mentioning. This morning, after reading about how the Old Testament prophecies might have been misapplied, I wanted to read Isaiah 53 for myself to check it out. I went on www.biblegateway.com to look it up, and on the front page they had "The fool says in his heart, "There is no God."..." from Psalm 14:1. Not long after, after watching videos about evolution and things like that, someone mentioned that verse to me, "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God" (as part of a joke).... Then, a bit later, after praying a very angry and heartfelt prayer, I went to get a Bible. I opened the Bible to a random page, just planning on reading whatever I opened it up to. I looked away for a second, then turned my head back, and the first thing that caught my eye was "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God"... Three times in a row, all unintentional. Maybe it's purely a random coincidence, and maybe it's not... But I think it's worth thinking about, at least.

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Guest confused idiot

Hi, confused,

 

I'm sorry to hear how miserable you are.

 

You said "My mind is stressed and going faster than I can comprehend" and "my thoughts all piled up together," and

"All I can do is sit around and think. About religion." You've sought answers from people until they've gotten exasperated with you. You recognize that you're obsessing and that this is the cause of your depression. Obsessing to this degree and with this level of impact...sounds like OCD.

 

To feel better, you would have to decide to let if be OK that you don't and can't know some stuff. The 100% certain answers aren't available. You can make some great guesses and place odds, but 100% certainty? Not for sale.

 

Pursue answers as much as you want, but pursue them because it's fascinating, and because you're a deep thinker, but NOT because not knowing makes you feel anxious, or because you irrationally feel your life depends on arriving at the 100% correct version of truth. As long as you hold on to the idea that you MUST have something you can't have (like the 100% certain explanation for the beginning of our universe), you're going to be stuck obsessing and feeling awful. Try taking the position that you'd like to know, but you can accept and cope with not knowing, and enjoy your life anyway. The anxiety you feel about not knowing can fade away through habituation. If you keep trying to escape uncertainty (through frantic reading, questioning and obsessing) you will stay obsessed and depressed. If you accept and sit with uncertainty as a condition of life, you'll have a chance to get better.

 

I hope you can get some peace one of these days and start living again.

 

Good point. You're right, it's impossible to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you're absolutely 100% "right"... I know that and understand that. I guess it's just fear holding me back from fully accepting it.

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Guest confused idiot

I think I've come to a conclusion. That conclusion is the fact that I give up. This is it. I'm not searching anymore. Whatever truth is out there, I don't care, because I won't find it. I still believe in God. But I also believe that God never intended to save me. I have been rejected, like many others apparently, before I was even born. I don't have a choice in much, if any, of this. This whole time I've been fighting, searching, praying, seeking, simply because of the fact that I don't want to go to hell. Now I'm starting to realize that maybe, probably, I don't have a choice. That's my destiny, if all of this is real. Not because I want to. I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there. I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope. This is just how it is. If I'm "saved", I wouldn't be feeling the way I am about all of this. If I was saved, I would have a genuine relationship with Christ. I don't. I have placed my faith in Christ in genuine, heartfelt repentance multiple times. I've even been baptized twice. I've tried my best to forgive others. I've done everything that the Bible states to be right with God. If I'm not saved now, it means that I never was saved, and can't ever be saved, simple as that. If this salvation is real, I ain't eligible for it. That much is clear.

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I think I've come to a conclusion. That conclusion is the fact that I give up. This is it. I'm not searching anymore. Whatever truth is out there, I don't care, because I won't find it. I still believe in God. But I also believe that God never intended to save me. I have been rejected, like many others apparently, before I was even born. I don't have a choice in much, if any, of this. This whole time I've been fighting, searching, praying, seeking, simply because of the fact that I don't want to go to hell. Now I'm starting to realize that maybe, probably, I don't have a choice. That's my destiny, if all of this is real. Not because I want to. I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there. I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope. This is just how it is. If I'm "saved", I wouldn't be feeling the way I am about all of this. If I was saved, I would have a genuine relationship with Christ. I don't. I have placed my faith in Christ in genuine, heartfelt repentance multiple times. I've even been baptized twice. I've tried my best to forgive others. I've done everything that the Bible states to be right with God. If I'm not saved now, it means that I never was saved, and can't ever be saved, simple as that. If this salvation is real, I ain't eligible for it. That much is clear.

I started wondering about things when I was 17. 40 years ago. Sometimes I just let it go and figured it wasn't worth worrying about. Other times I was busy living and learning.

 

I started seeing questions that weren't easily answered by what I knew, and I started my search then. About 20 years ago. It took me a while to sort through everything I knew, but I realized I really didn't have enough information about what should have been the most important things in the world (as I saw it at the time). So I started looking.

 

I found answers, sort of, here and there. Bits and pieces. It became pretty obvious that the world operates pretty much on its own - gravity, wind, diseases. The geological timescale made me really curious about why it took so long for us to get here, and we have the same DNA code and internal organs as other mammals, and I looked for answers in ancient history.

 

I didn't give up. If I got frustrated, I paused and did something else.

 

You seem to have an approach that says, "I need answers NOW." I'm not sure you are even asking the right questions. In less than a week, you have said you can't understand how evolution happened, shown that you don't even understand what it is, and come to the conclusion, "Whatever truth is out there, I don't care."

 

During this same week I have read several chapters of a book on evolution, and I have already studied it extensively. I have also researcjed questions that come up on this forum.

 

Even though long ago I reached a conclusion, I haven't stopped looking and thinking. I will say, however, that there hasn't been any information that has required another paradigm shift for me. Perhaps different ways of thinking, but arriving ultimately at the same basic conclusions.

 

One of the problems that I have with religion in general is the tendency to call something "unknowable." "You can't possibly ever know that!" And that's where they put God. There are unanswered questions, and perhaps questions that I personally may never be able to answer, but to categorically claim that there will never be answers simply states that we should stop looking. We should just say, "I give up. This is it. I'm not searching anymore."

 

It may take a lifetime, or perhaps several lifetimes, but we will never find answers, for ourselves or others, if we stop looking.

 

As for answers, I learn something every day. I could stop and say, "I don't want to learn anymore. I've got all the answers I need." Living in ignorance is what my ancestors did. Looking for reality, even if I don't like what I see, is more suitable to my temperment.

 

Maybe that's the difference between credulity and skepticism. Temperment.

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Guest confused idiot

I think I've come to a conclusion. That conclusion is the fact that I give up. This is it. I'm not searching anymore. Whatever truth is out there, I don't care, because I won't find it. I still believe in God. But I also believe that God never intended to save me. I have been rejected, like many others apparently, before I was even born. I don't have a choice in much, if any, of this. This whole time I've been fighting, searching, praying, seeking, simply because of the fact that I don't want to go to hell. Now I'm starting to realize that maybe, probably, I don't have a choice. That's my destiny, if all of this is real. Not because I want to. I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there. I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope. This is just how it is. If I'm "saved", I wouldn't be feeling the way I am about all of this. If I was saved, I would have a genuine relationship with Christ. I don't. I have placed my faith in Christ in genuine, heartfelt repentance multiple times. I've even been baptized twice. I've tried my best to forgive others. I've done everything that the Bible states to be right with God. If I'm not saved now, it means that I never was saved, and can't ever be saved, simple as that. If this salvation is real, I ain't eligible for it. That much is clear.

I started wondering about things when I was 17. 40 years ago. Sometimes I just let it go and figured it wasn't worth worrying about. Other times I was busy living and learning.

 

I started seeing questions that weren't easily answered by what I knew, and I started my search then. About 20 years ago. It took me a while to sort through everything I knew, but I realized I really didn't have enough information about what should have been the most important things in the world (as I saw it at the time). So I started looking.

 

I found answers, sort of, here and there. Bits and pieces. It became pretty obvious that the world operates pretty much on its own - gravity, wind, diseases. The geological timescale made me really curious about why it took so long for us to get here, and we have the same DNA code and internal organs as other mammals, and I looked for answers in ancient history.

 

I didn't give up. If I got frustrated, I paused and did something else.

 

You seem to have an approach that says, "I need answers NOW." I'm not sure you are even asking the right questions. In less than a week, you have said you can't understand how evolution happened, shown that you don't even understand what it is, and come to the conclusion, "Whatever truth is out there, I don't care."

 

During this same week I have read several chapters of a book on evolution, and I have already studied it extensively. I have also researcjed questions that come up on this forum.

 

Even though long ago I reached a conclusion, I haven't stopped looking and thinking. I will say, however, that there hasn't been any information that has required another paradigm shift for me. Perhaps different ways of thinking, but arriving ultimately at the same basic conclusions.

 

One of the problems that I have with religion in general is the tendency to call something "unknowable." "You can't possibly ever know that!" And that's where they put God. There are unanswered questions, and perhaps questions that I personally may never be able to answer, but to categorically claim that there will never be answers simply states that we should stop looking. We should just say, "I give up. This is it. I'm not searching anymore."

 

It may take a lifetime, or perhaps several lifetimes, but we will never find answers, for ourselves or others, if we stop looking.

 

As for answers, I learn something every day. I could stop and say, "I don't want to learn anymore. I've got all the answers I need." Living in ignorance is what my ancestors did. Looking for reality, even if I don't like what I see, is more suitable to my temperment.

 

Maybe that's the difference between credulity and skepticism. Temperment.

 

It's not necessarily that I have to have the answers right this minute. That's just the fear aspect talking. For one thing, if I know myself at all, I don't have the brains to figure any of it out.

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It's not necessarily that I have to have the answers right this minute. That's just the fear aspect talking. For one thing, if I know myself at all, I don't have the brains to figure any of it out.

Ok, I can understand that. It's like trying out something potentially dangerous and deciding that it isn't worth the risk.

 

I've read your writing. You have the brains, and I urge you not to underestimate yourself. You may not wish to put effort into it, but then there are a lot of things I have no interest in putting effort into. Other things, my interest waxes and wanes.

 

Some discussions sound really, really complicated. That is partly because they have gone beyond the basics and are looking at the details, but sometimes it's hard to see the forest for all the trees. Overviews and basic understanding are enough.

 

Don't "plan" to become something. it isn't something you can choose. Just follow your curiosity, check out things for yourself and see if you agree.

 

You will surprize yourself. And that's the great part about living.

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You strike me as a pretty smart buy, Idiot.

Did this line make any one else laugh besides me?

 

Hey C.I. don't give up searching for truth. Make it a journey. I would like to have answers RIGHT NOW myself, but I know that's not going to happen. I feel for you and what you're going through, and I hope things work out well for you.

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I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there.

 

Could it be that the reason god wasn't there is because he really isn't there?

 

Check out this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OrUYta7OBM&playnext_from=TL&videos=hHVpUHr198s

 

I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope.

 

And if it's not true?

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Guest confused idiot

I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there.

 

Could it be that the reason god wasn't there is because he really isn't there?

 

Check out this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OrUYta7OBM&playnext_from=TL&videos=hHVpUHr198s

 

I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope.

 

And if it's not true?

 

I don't think it's possible to know the answer to that question.

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I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there.

 

Could it be that the reason god wasn't there is because he really isn't there?

 

Check out this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OrUYta7OBM&playnext_from=TL&videos=hHVpUHr198s

 

I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope.

 

And if it's not true?

 

I don't think it's possible to know the answer to that question.

 

The first question or the second?

 

With the first question, I would agree that we can't know with absolute certainty. I do recommend watching the video, though, because it presents a very basic approach to the issue and makes pretty good sense.

 

With the second question, yes we can know. Christianity is mythology, period. No maybe about it. The bible is full of errors and the religion has evolved over the years and doesn't really represent reality, and therefore it's a big, fat lie, plain and simple.

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With the second question, yes we can know. Christianity is mythology, period. No maybe about it. The bible is full of errors and the religion has evolved over the years and doesn't really represent reality, and therefore it's a big, fat lie, plain and simple.

 

In fact it is no longer even a debate in academic circles that Christianity is a myth. It's one of the easiest religions to disprove, and is without question, one of the most badly constructed lies to have been accepted by so many people.

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Guest confused idiot

I've called on God in depression, anxiety, confusion, anger, hopelessness, and guilt, for my few years of serious faith. God wasn't there.

 

Could it be that the reason god wasn't there is because he really isn't there?

 

Check out this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OrUYta7OBM&playnext_from=TL&videos=hHVpUHr198s

 

I'm not saying any of this to slander God, Christianity, religion, or any of that. I'm simply stating the fact that, if all this is true, there's no hope.

 

And if it's not true?

 

I don't think it's possible to know the answer to that question.

 

The first question or the second?

 

With the first question, I would agree that we can't know with absolute certainty. I do recommend watching the video, though, because it presents a very basic approach to the issue and makes pretty good sense.

 

With the second question, yes we can know. Christianity is mythology, period. No maybe about it. The bible is full of errors and the religion has evolved over the years and doesn't really represent reality, and therefore it's a big, fat lie, plain and simple.

 

Either one.

 

If it's possible to 100% prove it to be false, then why hasn't anyone done it? I'm assuming no one has, but then again, if anyone had then I would think it would be all over the news and everywhere else. I doubt there would be as many believers as there are if that was the case. When I say believers, I don't mean the people who just go to church and believe whatever they're told by the preacher. I'm talking about the few percentage of Christians who actually know their Bible from cover to cover.

 

I'll be sure to check out that video.

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If it's possible to 100% prove it to be false, then why hasn't anyone done it? I'm assuming no one has, but then again, if anyone had then I would think it would be all over the news and everywhere else. I doubt there would be as many believers as there are if that was the case. When I say believers, I don't mean the people who just go to church and believe whatever they're told by the preacher. I'm talking about the few percentage of Christians who actually know their Bible from cover to cover.

 

I'll be sure to check out that video.

 

 

It's not as if you can "falsify" Christianity any more than you can Leprechauns or the Greek Gods. This is a lame argument often put forward by believers, but the fact of the matter is that the burden of proof is always on the one making amazing and incredible claims !

 

One of things I had to do years ago when I came to the dilemma of what I truly believed about Christianity, or my existence in fact, was to clear everything off the table and start from scratch. Begin with the premise of exploring what religion claims without the whole "fear" thing that's been pounded into your mind. Millions of people have discontinued believing in a God, or in Christianity, and haven't been "struck down". In fact, most of them lead ordinary lives and even happy ones.

 

You should also examine the motives of believers. Christianity is a nice idea; let's pretend that we're not alone in the universe; let's pretend that there is life after death; let's pretend that if you do "this" and "that" correctly, you get your free pass.

 

But in the end ask yourself whether you want to spend the rest of your life worshiping an invisible, unknowable entity that may just be created in the imagination of people no smarter than yourself ? Millions of people for centuries believed in the Egyptian gods, the Greeco-Roman Gods, the Hindu gods, and so on. There are many keys to understanding how a lot of this works by exploring the reasons that people believe; not just the details of what they believe.

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Either one.

 

If it's possible to 100% prove it to be false, then why hasn't anyone done it? I'm assuming no one has, but then again, if anyone had then I would think it would be all over the news and everywhere else. I doubt there would be as many believers as there are if that was the case. When I say believers, I don't mean the people who just go to church and believe whatever they're told by the preacher. I'm talking about the few percentage of Christians who actually know their Bible from cover to cover.

 

I'll be sure to check out that video.

Good point. You would think that such a question would be easily decided. Is there a magical invisible immaterial sky-daddy - or not?

 

The problem is the "not". Proving a negative can be impossible as long as the claims keep hiding the negative.

 

Were there gods on top of mount Olympus? That would seem to be a question that could be decided by simply climbing Mount Olympus. But, what if they, and their entire kingdom (furniture, wardrobe, buildings) were actually invisible and anyone looking would therefore only see rocks (and/or snow)? How could you prove there weren't invisible beings on top of Mount Olympus then?

 

So gods disappeared - became invisible. And you can't touch them. And you can't hear them. And they leave no traces (even "footprints in the sand").

 

But what about the stories of old? Surely someone must know this stuff. Hercules was a mortal. Actually, the son of a god and a woman, but still a "mortal." Well, he could do miraculous stuff, but was capable of dying. He rescued the princess of Troy (a real place! Discovered through the ancient Greek writings about the gods) and later was taken from death and made into a god on Mount Olympus.

 

You could go there to Mount Olympus (a real place!) and look for him even today.

 

Oh, I forgot to tell you, he became invisible when he became immortal.

 

No one has ever disproved the existence of the Greek gods, and no one ever will. Millions of the ancients believed in him (and some people still do). But if you want 100% proof that Hercules and his father Zeus don't exist, you will never find it.

 

So why don't you believe in Zeus? (I assume you don't...)

 

That's the problem with the make believe. People have always had gods. Rah, Marduk, Zeus, Vishnu, Thor and many, many others.

 

As someone once said, "I contend that you and I are both atheists. I just believe in one less god than you do."

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