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Old 07-02-2004, 11:49 PM   #1
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Universality of God...

Ok, I just had to put it out there.

I have sensitive feelings on this topic, and I don't wish to share them for fear of being personally attacked.

I don't want to debate, I just want to observe. Only if anyone is interested, though.
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Old 07-02-2004, 11:58 PM   #2
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You won't get personally attacked. Just expect all of your ideas and opinions to be open to full scrutiny and deconstructed into a million pieces.

First off, though, I'd be interested in knowing what you mean by "Universality of God." I think it would be a hard sell, merely because this will be a faith-based approach (read: inarguable "mythic speech"), rather than a scientific or rational approach, most likely.

But, really, I think we should stop insisting that all our belief systems be "rational" or "universal." What's wrong with being "irrational" or "individual" on our approach to God? There's a lot of popular push for "Christian unity," but the last time that happened (pre-Reformation), religion was terribly corrupt. In many ways, if the marketplace is best suited as a competitive marketplace of ideas, rather than a one-choice monopoly, I often believe that religion is best suited similarly. I don't believe God to be a monolithic tyrant to be offended by our capacity to think and reason; after all, that's why we are able to think and reason.

But really...I'm just babbling. I don't even know what you are trying to say yet.

Melon
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Old 07-03-2004, 12:52 AM   #3
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eh..
like melon's said, get ready for this to get deconstructed to atoms and then rebuilt to something unrecognizable from the original point....

for my part... I don't recognize any single Deity per se... I'm spiritual but not religious, i guess you could say. and I piss a lot of people off when I tell them that from my personal POV, Jesus and Mohammed and Y'shua and Allah and Odin and Kali-Durga and Krishna and Qwan Yin and Papa Legba and earth, fire, water, wind, sky, spirit, sun moon and stars..... are all just facets that come to people in ways they can accept, all representing the same force, the same life-energy or 'divine spirit'.

Some people get offended by that.. interesting that it's as often been people that claim to be "wiccan" or pagan as more mainstream Judeo-Christian, for all that people like to bash the latter.

personally I tend to find a lot of enlightenment in just relating to it myself without other people's words, without dogma getting between me and what I feel... what I see... what I know.
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Old 07-03-2004, 12:22 PM   #4
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What gets me is when people say God is male. There's no way that's possible. I see one of 3 options here:

1) There is no God at all
2) God is neither male nor female, but a sort of androgynous spirit
3) God is dual; there is a male supreme being and a female supreme being (ie yin & yang)
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Old 07-03-2004, 01:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by FullonEdge
Ok, I just had to put it out there.
In the way that I think you mean "universality", I believe that God is universal in that there is only one creator of us all.
However, if you mean that all of the different religions in the world are really worshipping the same God without realizing it, then I think it's a misconception.
Quote:
Originally posted by melon
But, really, I think we should stop insisting that all our belief systems be "rational" or "universal." What's wrong with being "irrational" or "individual" on our approach to God? There's a lot of popular push for "Christian unity," but the last time that happened (pre-Reformation), religion was terribly corrupt. In many ways, if the marketplace is best suited as a competitive marketplace of ideas, rather than a one-choice monopoly, I often believe that religion is best suited similarly. I don't believe God to be a monolithic tyrant to be offended by our capacity to think and reason; after all, that's why we are able to think and reason.
Very interesting points, and I actually agree with several of them!
Quote:
Originally posted by DaveC
What gets me is when people say God is male. There's no way that's possible.
While I can see how it might contradict your beliefs, I don't know if I would go so far as to say that it's impossible.
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Old 07-03-2004, 01:45 PM   #6
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The Hebrew used a gender neutral pronoun, if I remember right, but English doesn't have one. So, as it used to be, by default, if the gender was unknown, "he" would be used. However, some very misogynist religious folk came in and completely disregarded all the gender neutral pronouns and took "he" completely literally.

I tend to think that God is genderless; a pure energy source.

Melon
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Old 07-03-2004, 04:48 PM   #7
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It just doesn't make sense that God would be male. If God was any single gender it would be female, it seems to me. You know, the whole fertility/reproduction thing...cause that's really what ancient folks worshipped was fertility and they thought that reproduction was the ultimate miracle...the ancient folks would be able to relate more to that so you'd think that the Supreme Being in ancient times would most likely have been a Goddess.

A guy I know says that the Bible has been revised so much that it's incredibly different than it was when it was written. Apparently the whole pillar of cloud/fire in Exodus was a testament to the duality of God. Fire represented male, Cloud represented female (the whole fertility thing coming back into play). Also he said that the Temple in Jerusalem was not just consecrated to YHWH (Yahweh) but also to SHKNH (Shekinah). Yahweh was the male God, Shekinah was the female God...the reason this has disappeared was because of Constantine and the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century AD. I guess they voted on whether Jesus was divine and things like that and also vastly rewrote the Bible, Judaism and Christianity themselves to fit in better with the pagan religions of the time, to make Christianity (which had all of a sudden become the official Roman Empire religion in 313 AD) more palatable to the people of the time who had been worshipping the sun and pagan gods at the time.

There's also some other stuff some guy said to me about the Holy Grail and Mary Magdalene and Jesus but that's a whole other can of worms.
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Old 07-03-2004, 05:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
originally posted by DaveC
God is dual; there is a male supreme being and a female supreme being (ie yin & yang)
Do you mean that there are two gods - a male and a female, or God has two aspects, with both male and female features at once?
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Old 07-03-2004, 05:37 PM   #9
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God is not human nor animal etc. and wouldn't need or have a gender. God comes in many different forms and has many different names and is worshipped in many different ways.
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Old 07-03-2004, 05:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by wolfeden
and I piss a lot of people off when I tell them that from my personal POV, Jesus and Mohammed and Y'shua and Allah and Odin and Kali-Durga and Krishna and Qwan Yin and Papa Legba and earth, fire, water, wind, sky, spirit, sun moon and stars..... are all just facets that come to people in ways they can accept, all representing the same force, the same life-energy or 'divine spirit'.


I completely agree.
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Old 07-03-2004, 09:53 PM   #11
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I'd always thought of God as a male, for some reason, and an elderly one at that. But I'm perfectly willing to accept the idea of God being genderless, or a female. And as I've said before, I don't personally tie God down to any specific religion-I'm in agreement with BonoVoxSupastar about God coming in many different forms, having many different names, and being worshipped in many different ways.

Also, off the topic somewhat for a second-when I saw the title of this thread, I thought it said "University of God". .

Anywho, on with our regularly scheduled discussion.

Angela
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Old 07-03-2004, 10:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by DaveC
It just doesn't make sense that God would be male. If God was any single gender it would be female, it seems to me. You know, the whole fertility/reproduction thing...cause that's really what ancient folks worshipped was fertility and they thought that reproduction was the ultimate miracle...the ancient folks would be able to relate more to that so you'd think that the Supreme Being in ancient times would most likely have been a Goddess.

A guy I know says that the Bible has been revised so much that it's incredibly different than it was when it was written. Apparently the whole pillar of cloud/fire in Exodus was a testament to the duality of God. Fire represented male, Cloud represented female (the whole fertility thing coming back into play). Also he said that the Temple in Jerusalem was not just consecrated to YHWH (Yahweh) but also to SHKNH (Shekinah). Yahweh was the male God, Shekinah was the female God...the reason this has disappeared was because of Constantine and the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century AD. I guess they voted on whether Jesus was divine and things like that and also vastly rewrote the Bible, Judaism and Christianity themselves to fit in better with the pagan religions of the time, to make Christianity (which had all of a sudden become the official Roman Empire religion in 313 AD) more palatable to the people of the time who had been worshipping the sun and pagan gods at the time.

There's also some other stuff some guy said to me about the Holy Grail and Mary Magdalene and Jesus but that's a whole other can of worms.

I think this guy of yours might be pulling your tail a little bit

(sorry if that seems to be a personal attack)
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Old 07-03-2004, 10:26 PM   #13
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I'm actually quite in agreement with you, ThefirstBigW.

I think that the emerging idea of universalism where all religions worship the same God and merely take different paths to either "oneness" or heaven is a dangerous one. It's more like wishful thinking. The Bible says God is a "jealous God" who punishes sin and is in fact the only deity.

As for atheism, I think everyone is aware that a deity exists, some may deny the existence out of stubborness (seeing how religions can be corrupted and how evil human nature is) or out of ignorance (thinking they don't need a god) even though God promises hell to be real. Why would you want to risk unimagineable torture for eternity? Yes, I do think rationalism has gone a little too far.

Ok, I've gone a little far, and now i'll just wait to be personally attacked or whatever.
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Old 07-03-2004, 11:02 PM   #14
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*eyeroll*
So basically all you really wanted oiut of this thread was to beat people with your Bible. Lovely. I'll be off now, thanks. Cheers.
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Old 07-03-2004, 11:09 PM   #15
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I'm sorry
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