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View Poll Results: Is Demonic Possession real or group hysteria?
Absolutely real 10 18.87%
Probably real 2 3.77%
It's real, but you have to invite evil influences into your life 8 15.09%
No, not real; anyone claiming this is a mental case. 28 52.83%
There is a good force and a bad force in our universe-a person has to decide which force they choose to serve 2 3.77%
diamondbruno#9, do you have your own church and gospel? 3 5.66%
diamond you always make the best threads; cutting edge, pushing the intellectual and religious envelope; Bravo 6 11.32%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 53. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 03-15-2008, 11:07 PM   #121
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On a separate note, I get a kick out of watching hard-core believers and hard-core atheists argue with each other. Whomever wins the argument, it's a Pyrrhic victory.
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Old 03-15-2008, 11:17 PM   #122
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Originally posted by diamond
A lot of atheists have had NDEs and changed their minds.
Books have been written; cases have been documented.
Presuming that NDEs are truly supernatural experiences (and a good part of me hopes that they are), how does one reconcile the unorthodox "truths" one garnishes from them?

I've read a few of their case studies before. One NDE, in particular, was quite detailed, and argued that "God" was, essentially, present in every religion on Earth, Christian and non-Christian alike, and that, upon one's death, He merely shows Himself to you in the way you'd recognize Him. If you're expecting a Christian Heaven, that's what you get. If you're expecting something Buddhist, you'd get that instead. And he argued that hell did exist for many souls; it was a self-imposed place of torment that they would send themselves to, out of shame and fear of facing God--and a state that they could just as easily renounce, thus being free to be with God in the end.

Not every NDE out there plays a consistent message; this could be an explanation as to why--again, presuming that they are supernatural. I am quite intrigued, though, if it were a scientific phenomenon and merely a figment of one's imagination, I often wonder why so many people "dream" of their own afterlife.
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Old 03-15-2008, 11:52 PM   #123
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I feel that figment of imagination frames a materialist argument the wrong way as some people are having an experience, they don't just make it up. The event that occurs within the brain is different from what meaning people place in it: for example I may not take an acid trip as a mystical experience whereas a believer may think those feelings of deeper insight and truth mean something. People do experience hallucinations, their not making it up (although filling in gaps of memory or making false memory to justify a deeply held belief isn't off the table) and some ascribe meaning to them.

Placing a supernatural cause is problematic to me, a big reason is that I feel it implies a mind-body dualism that doesn't fit in with my view of the world (consciousness is a product of biology, not an element separate from the brain).
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Old 03-15-2008, 11:56 PM   #124
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon


Presuming that NDEs are truly supernatural experiences (and a good part of me hopes that they are), how does one reconcile the unorthodox "truths" one garnishes from them?

I've read a few of their case studies before. One NDE, in particular, was quite detailed, and argued that "God" was, essentially, present in every religion on Earth, Christian and non-Christian alike, and that, upon one's death, He merely shows Himself to you in the way you'd recognize Him. If you're expecting a Christian Heaven, that's what you get. If you're expecting something Buddhist, you'd get that instead. And he argued that hell did exist for many souls; it was a self-imposed place of torment that they would send themselves to, out of shame and fear of facing God--and a state that they could just as easily renounce, thus being free to be with God in the end.

Not every NDE out there plays a consistent message; this could be an explanation as to why--again, presuming that they are supernatural. I am quite intrigued, though, if it were a scientific phenomenon and merely a figment of one's imagination, I often wonder why so many people "dream" of their own afterlife.
I agree with the substance of your post. And after reading over 30 books on the subject and volumes of other data the consesus is something like this:

The after life is much larger than Earth. Remember that 3 billion ppl live on Earth now; an estimated 6 billion have lived on Earth since it's inception or creation. People depending on how they treated their fellow man here will go to a place best suited for them and continue to grow intellectually, spiritually, and emotionally. Good Muslims, good Buddists, good atheists and good Christians will find themselves in a better place called Paradise. You will recognize family members and friends there. In Paradise you have the oppurtunity to continue to progress spiritually; people who chose goodness on Eath but didn't have the oppurtunity or were blinded by false man made precepts on Earth, if they so desire will have eternal truths taught to them so that there souls can continue to progress.

This is how God is fair and just. A good person finding himself in Paradise will have the oppurtunity to connect the dots so to speak and understand the significance of Christ and his sacrafice,(if he didn't understand it on Earth) the purpose of Adam and Eve, what their role in Eden was and all of the Prophets and their spiritual roles through out history.

Eventually if a good soul wants to continue to grow he can and will progress to Heaven.

Good Muslims, good agnostics, good Hindus, good Atheists will not be thrown down to Hell, that is not God's plan.

Only God knows a person's heart, and because his Love is the same for all of his children, nobody will be short changed.

A fascinating read by a Hospice Medical Doctor and Scientist by the name of Dr Lerma who has had the oppurtunity of watching many of his patients cross over is recorded in a book called : Into The Light.

http://www.amazon.com/Into-Light-Aft.../dp/1564149722

Some paitents in their final hours would also come back and tell Dr Lerma about their visits to Paradise or a hellish place-but the hellish place isn't as eternal in durartion as thought although it is horrifying dreadful, and eventually you get out of Hell after you suffer for what you did, based on what you knew in this life-here on earth.

Some of his dying patients have been atheists, Nazi prison guards, angry anti Gay preachers, who all learned the errors of their ways before departing this earth life and also realised God's love and forgiveness for their short comings.

Read it, it's a great book.

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Old 03-15-2008, 11:56 PM   #125
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon
On a separate note, I get a kick out of watching hard-core believers and hard-core atheists argue with each other. Whomever wins the argument, it's a Pyrrhic victory.
Not if elucidating other peoples stupidity feeds your ego
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Old 03-16-2008, 12:05 AM   #126
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Quote:
Originally posted by diamond

Good Muslims, good Buddists, good atheists and good Christians will find themselves in a better place called Paradise.
Diamond, this is very suprisingly open minded and (I don't mean this in a bad way) and unlike you.

I actually have to say, I agree with you.
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Old 03-16-2008, 12:06 AM   #127
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It's what I always believed.



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Old 03-16-2008, 12:14 AM   #128
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It's what I always believed.



dbs
That's good. Maybe you are just misunderstood in here, for I haven't always seen that attitude in here...

But it's a brand new day.
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Old 03-16-2008, 12:22 AM   #129
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On a separate note, I get a kick out of watching hard-core believers and hard-core atheists argue with each other.
What is a 'hard-core atheist'?
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Old 03-16-2008, 12:50 AM   #130
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Anti-theistic atheists (now say it 5 times fast)
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Old 03-16-2008, 12:53 AM   #131
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Well, I would usually interpret it to mean an atheist who adopts the position of viewing the existence of God as impossible, and very few atheists, in my experience, adopt that position.

In fact, even Richard Dawkins doesn't claim to be an atheist in that particular sense of the word.
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Old 03-16-2008, 01:02 AM   #132
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If one was to view God as a scientific hypothesis there is the possibility, however remote, that God actually the first cause or maybe even the perpetual interventionist; so certainty on God's inexistence is impossible along those lines of inquiry as there will always be in principle the possibility that God did it (just as there is the possibility that Superman did it).

I feel anti-theist captures the spirit more as opposing the concept of God invariably butts up against religion more than merely rejecting the existence of God.
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Old 03-16-2008, 01:12 AM   #133
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I detecting some movement in A Wanderer, ever so miniscule folks, but movement nonetheless.


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Old 03-16-2008, 01:28 AM   #134
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That I am starting a Church of Superman?



The God Hypothesis lacks the capacity to explain the evidence better than most theories. God isn't needed for morality, God isn't needed for the origin of mankind and God isn't needed to keep the planets in orbit or the universe functioning.
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Old 03-16-2008, 01:37 AM   #135
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If you change your mind in the next life, we'll all be ok with it.



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