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Old 12-31-2004, 09:52 AM   #1
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a loving God and the Tsunami

i'm curious, and looking for personal reactions. if you believe in a loving God, why do bad things happen? yes, this is an age old question, and it can be debated with text and philosophy, but what interests me are personal reflections on faith (or lack of faith) that an unspeakable disaster creates within the heart, mind, and soul.

as for myself -- it's another reason for my agnosticism. i find it impossible to beleive that 100,000+ (and climbing) deaths due to a shift in the earth's crust could possibly be a part of "God's plan." and i find it enormously insulting to frame such a tragedy as a test of our compassion and/or recognition of our common humanity. horseshit. people died, horribly, needlessly. total innocents suffering and screaming and swallowing water and being crushed underneath cars and rooftops. there was no God -- at least no God that i've been taught about in CCD and when i used to go to church on Sunday -- in those waves. a disaster like this strengthens my resolve to look hard, bitter reality in the face, to realize that life is precious, and precarious, and that it can turn on a dime into something horrible and hellish. this doesn't, to me, become an argument for atheism, but it certainly doesn't strengthen a belief in God.
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Old 12-31-2004, 09:55 AM   #2
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I said before, this has been a TERRIBLE year for people dying and I wanted it to hurry and end before anyone else went. Then this, the death toll is astronomical and unbelieveable. What a tragedy
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Old 12-31-2004, 10:02 AM   #3
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I'm going to have to think about this.
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Old 12-31-2004, 10:06 AM   #4
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I do not believe that God 'caused' this to happen nor that it was a part of his/her/its plan. This was a NATURAL disaster, easily explained by science, I do not believe God played a part in it. From what I believe, ever since Jesus God has essentially sat back and is watching over us.
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Old 12-31-2004, 10:23 AM   #5
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This is one of my big questions. I don't believe God deliberately allowing this event to happen out of wrath or to test us. I do wonder though, if God did create the world, why did He create it with so many flaws that lead to death and destruction? Is God not as great as we believe? Is He flawed? Is there another supernatural force out there besides God that causes natural disasters?
I guess we'll never know
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:17 AM   #6
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glad to have you back, Irvine.

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Old 12-31-2004, 11:20 AM   #7
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The limitations placed on God by humans are what cause crises of faith.

When one understands the laws of karma and how they operate, one can begin to process tragedies of this sort. I said begin to process; humans can never hope to even try to fathom the mysteries of God, karma, grace, and the way these things intersect and influence events here on Earth. It's pointless to argue with God, to try to ask Him for the reasons for events like this.

God is a loving God. Look around you and see what gifts you've been given. Something as big as this is ununderstandable for humans. There are more reasons for this than one can even imagine.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:22 AM   #8
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Martha, that was a great post. I agree completely.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:27 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by martha
The limitations placed on God by humans are what cause crises of faith.

When one understands the laws of karma and how they operate, one can begin to process tragedies of this sort. I said begin to process; humans can never hope to even try to fathom the mysteries of God, karma, grace, and the way these things intersect and influence events here on Earth. It's pointless to argue with God, to try to ask Him for the reasons for events like this.

God is a loving God. Look around you and see what gifts you've been given. Something as big as this is ununderstandable for humans. There are more reasons for this than one can even imagine.
I was just forming a similar response but yours is much better articulated. I believe in the laws of karma and it is the only thing that has ever helped me make sense of this world, how to explain why someone is born into wealth and others into abject poverty with no hope of ever improving their situation, etc. When the Bible states that we are born in sin, I believe that means we are born with karma.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:27 AM   #10
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That's a good point, Martha.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:33 AM   #11
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Irvine, I don't believe in any religious deities controlling the world. I consider myself more like a humanist.

As for why bad things happen, that is how the world is. The earth has been around a very long time and survived thousands of cataclysmic events. The people and animals who rent the space of the earth do not always survive these events. There are many good things which happen too but unfortunately we seem to take much of it for granted. Go watch the news and you will see what I mean. Most days go by without anything bad happening to most of us but there are billions of people so bad things will happen to someone somewhere.

Many people will look to the survivors and their stories of how they made it out alive and attribute that to God looking out for them. There are many reasons why people survive tragedies, most of it is just being in the right place at the right time basically its numbers like someone has to win the lotto even if most lose. Others will say it is the work of Satan. If there is a God and he specifically chooses some to live and some to die, that sounds awfully arrogant to me. Whether God is a loving god or wrathful god depends on which part of the bible you read. I think some morons will claim that the tsunami is god's punishment for being Muslim or Hindu. Just like some of the fundamentalists in the US argued briefly before they were shut up that 9/11 was punishment for the US for being sinful. Rubbish, but you know some people think that way.

I also hate when people pray to win a sporting event or something trivial. God doesn't care if he makes that shot or if the touchdown counts. If you are going to pray, pray for the poor people in destitute parts of the world. Prayer is a great healing tool which gives people who feel helpless a way of coping with times of stress, grief and tragedy. I think it just like meditation or other method of coping, just not my cup of tea.

Peace out.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:40 AM   #12
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As already stated here God did not cause the earthquake that killed all these people death is Gods enemy which he will soon do away with...

my faith and comfort lies in that I know that every single individual that perished in this horrible disaster is not forgotten by God but are in his memory and will get resurrected to a better life on an earthly paradise and reunited with their loved ones where they will endure no more suffering or pain and they won't even remember this horrible event or have to face such terrible tragedy again because he promises it will happen


Revelation
21 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea is no more. 2*I saw also the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3*With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: “Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his peoples. And God himself will be with them. 4*And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”

5*And the One seated on the throne said: “Look! I am making all things new.” Also, he says: “Write, because these words are faithful and true.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:49 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by joyfulgirl


I was just forming a similar response but yours is much better articulated. I believe in the laws of karma and it is the only thing that has ever helped me make sense of this world, how to explain why someone is born into wealth and others into abject poverty with no hope of ever improving their situation, etc. When the Bible states that we are born in sin, I believe that means we are born with karma.
so based on that karma idea, those people deserved it??!?

that's disturbing.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:50 AM   #14
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I'm sorry, but if there is a "loving God" then why in hell did something like this, as well as so many other things of this nature, have to happen? It really makes me question a lot of things, especially the presence of God. I'm not exactly what one would call religious, and I'm not quite sure what to believe anymore, but all of the thoughts so far in this thread are making for interesting reading.

Another thing... I remember shortly after 9/11 happened being invited to a church function of my aunt's. I'll go to one of these every so often to make her happy, because church or anything religious for that matter tend to make me very uncomfortable. Anyway, mid-way through, the leader of her women's group got up and read a scripture pertaining to what had just happened, about how the dead are the lucky ones, because now they're with God, and that us on Earth should be jealous. Hearing that upset me greatly, because if we're so lucky, then how come the loss of these victims causes so much pain? If God is so loving, how does he allow such catastrophies like 9/11 and the earthquakes to even happen? And natural disaster could just as easily fall into the category of "act of God".

I'm sorry, I just don't get it. I'll stop rambling now.
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Old 12-31-2004, 11:51 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by annj
As already stated here God did not cause the earthquake that killed all these people death is Gods enemy which he will soon do away with...

my faith and comfort lies in that I know that every single individual that perished in this horrible disaster is not forgotten by God but are in his memory and will get resurrected to a better life on an earthly paradise and reunited with their loved ones where they will endure no more suffering or pain and they won't even remember this horrible event or have to face such terrible tragedy again because he promises it will happen


Revelation
21 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea is no more. 2*I saw also the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3*With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: “Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his peoples. And God himself will be with them. 4*And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”

5*And the One seated on the throne said: “Look! I am making all things new.” Also, he says: “Write, because these words are faithful and true.
That of course, is based on the assumption that they are Christians, of which the vast majority were not. The major religions in those areas are Buddhism, Islam, and Hinduism.

So they're not all going to Heaven, as you say. They're going to Hell for believing the wrong things.
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