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Old 08-19-2006, 11:27 PM   #16
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I've heard the views of people who do not believe there is a God and the views of people who believe in a perfect God. Being someone in between --one who believes in a God, but one who believes that God is flawed. So much for oxymoron, though you're certainly free to doubt whether I'm a believer or not.

I'm not looking to convince anybody or be convinced of God's perfection, just wondering if anyone else has the same concept.
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Old 08-19-2006, 11:45 PM   #17
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Can you give some specific examples of what (IYO) those flaws/imperfections/failures to be omniscient or omnipotent look like in practice? More generally, do you believe that God transcends space/time/other human-apprehensible qualities, and if yes, what yardsticks might one meaningfully use then to evaluate what God "knows" or "does" (or fails to know or do)?
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Old 08-20-2006, 05:10 AM   #18
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I never said Buddhism, Hinduism etc were pagan religions! If you followed my logic up to the point where Wild Honey went wild an totally misinterpreted what I was saying. I was merely posing a separate question, that question being: are there any pagan religions that define god or gods the same way that Judaism, Christianity and Islam do? In other words, are their definitions of God as an all-powerful, all-knowing, ever-present being the same?
That said, the original question posed is still an oxymoron.
You can't ask if anyone believes in a non-perfect God when the very definition of God is that It IS perfection.
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Old 08-20-2006, 06:53 AM   #19
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I believe in G-d - the allmighty, all-knowing, compassionate, merciful G-d who is perfect in every way.
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Old 08-20-2006, 07:08 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
Can you give some specific examples of what (IYO) those flaws/imperfections/failures to be omniscient or omnipotent look like in practice? More generally, do you believe that God transcends space/time/other human-apprehensible qualities, and if yes, what yardsticks might one meaningfully use then to evaluate what God "knows" or "does" (or fails to know or do)?

I'll answer your second question first. I believe in God, but I'm not sure why I do. I have no evidence or even logical rationale.
I have no ammunition to offer A_W to show God isn't any more than an imaginary whatever. If I am using pure logic, he stops me cold and I appreciate being stopped cold. I suppose it is an emotional desire. I will cop to that. And in that belief, I believe God is eternal (transcends time), has marvelous creative abilities, etc. There is a certain orderliness I appreciate in a monotheistic God as opposed to polytheism.

But my questions regarding the flaws of Gods are twofold. I do not see anything that is always perfect, although I see moments of perfection. I do not believe in absolute perfection in anything.
But generally my concept of a flawed God comes both from the qualities JCR noted as being attributed to ancient gods and my own study of the Bible. In the Old Testament, I think a case can be made that God is sometimes petty, often overreactive, makes promises he does not always keep (I am often overwhelmed with the patience of the Jews in the OT) , is subject to flattery (see David), is cruel uncomfortably often and really gives no sign that he knows how to handle his recalcitrant creation--he cajoles and punishes, he speaks, he gives the silent treatment--he is the clueless parent of an unruly teenager.
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Old 08-20-2006, 07:24 AM   #21
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Even if I believe in a God, I don't think he/she/it is all-powerful or all-knowing. Don't ask me why I believe this, but I just do, it's a feeling. When I look at the world, I don't think we all are responsible ourselves for things that happen.
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Old 08-20-2006, 08:03 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by WildHoneyAlways
My Hindu friends don't appreciate being referred to as "pagans."

In my experience, it does not have a positive connotation.
It is changing....

In the Unitarian Church one town over, they have a pagan group that meets within the church. They are gaining acceptance.
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Old 08-20-2006, 08:06 AM   #23
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Re: An Imperfect God

Quote:
Originally posted by BonosSaint
So does anyone believe there is a God but that He is not perfect--or all-knowing or all- powerful?
I think this is an awesome question.

But we as human being interpret things in our own way.

I would sum it up this way, free will verses God's will. When they do not match up, I think it is easy for us to say that god is not perfect and all powerful because God did not answer MY PRayers.

More and more I pray the Our Father. I try not to worry about what I hope comes of the situation, and I find I am much happier in the long run. That does not mean I sit on the sidelines rolling the dice waiting for something to happen.
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Old 08-20-2006, 08:44 AM   #24
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I've read quite a lot of writing on the idea of open theism and while I'm still rather agnostic towards many ideas in Christianity, this is one that makes a lot of sense to me. I suppose it could be misunderstood with believing that God is not "all-knowing" but in fact it is the idea that God only knows what "can be known". From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Theism

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Open theism, also known as free will theism, is a theological movement that has developed within Evangelical Protestant Christianity as a response to certain ideas that are a part of the synthesis of Greek philosophy and Christian theology. Several ideas within Classical theism (a designation which is not to be taken as inclusive of all of orthodox theism) state that God is immutable, impassible, and timeless. Classical Theists also believe that God fully determines the future thus humanity does not have libertarian free will, or if free, that freedom must be compatible with God's determining actions. These are ideas which open theists oppose.

Open theism claims that God is not immutable, impassible, nor timeless since they believe that these attributes are not consistent with the personhood of God and his relationship to man as presented in the Christian scriptures. According to open theists, the God of the Bible is a God whose actions are not timeless but historical. God is neither completely immutable nor impassible as He may change his mind and He may be affected by his creatures emotionally and in other ways. God does not practice meticulous sovereignty (determining everything) but practices general sovereignty that allows for free will in mankind and allows man to contribute to bringing about the future. The most controversial aspect of open theism is the claim of its proponents that the omniscience of God does not include foreknowledge of the outcome of individual free choices that have not yet been made. Open theists argue the existence of such knowledge is not consistent with the nature of the future that they believe is implied by free will and that such knowledge is not consistent with the belief that our prayers can make a difference to God with regard to his plans.
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Old 08-20-2006, 08:52 AM   #25
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Well if God created us in his image and likeness, and no human beings are perfect (well so many think they are). Are image and likeness merely physical qualities?

I think God is all loving, is that always all knowing and all powerful? Love of that magnitude is so powerful in so many ways, and I believe He loves us in spite of all He knows about our imperfections, and actually because of what he knows about them and about us. Knowledge and power related to God are not necessarily some sort of foreboding, psychic-like entities.
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Old 08-20-2006, 12:48 PM   #26
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Thanks. sulawesigirl. I had never heard the term open theism before and found the post interesting.

Thanks, too, Dread. From reading your posts over the past several months, I think we have been through similar dark patches though maybe to different conclusions. I thought it was interesting that we have both been considering the Lord's Prayer, a prayer that doesn't leave much room for past regret or future worry, but just asks that this day's needs be met.

I don't pray it much. But I think about it, which I guess constitutes a prayer of sorts. But doesn't let him off the hook, not yet.
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Old 08-21-2006, 01:28 PM   #27
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Sula-most excellent find on open theism! Got me thinkin' of other 'isms' out there!
Deis, is a belief that god made the world and then tossed it aside and has no contact or interaction with its inhabitants. So God is viewed by deists as all-powerful and all-aloof! HAHAHAHA. So I guess there is such thing as a flawed Creator.
(BonosSaint: Now if you had used the word Creator instead of God in your initial premise, this whole thing could have started out differently. )
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Old 08-21-2006, 06:12 PM   #28
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That's OK. I've kind of lost interest in it anyway.
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Old 08-22-2006, 09:45 AM   #29
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Ah, dont be disheartened, BsS.

If I may offer one more view. I've wondered whether this god being, if it exists, is not really of an emotional or human ideal of just and perfect and all that. The problem with this is exactly semantics, and if I say I wonder if it isn't perfect by human standards, then I must be using human standards to say otherwise, too. Right? I've wondered if the god which may or may not exist is nothing of the sort. I'm going to run out of battery, but I'll reply in detail later if you renew interest.
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Old 08-22-2006, 12:08 PM   #30
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Thanks, Angela Harlem. I figured I'd just go off elsewhere and think about this, but I definitely want to hear your take. So if you're game
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