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View Poll Results: What is God? (In no particular order...)
A cooler older sibling that you look up to. 1 2.86%
An overprotective parent you'll gladly shove in a nursing home. 1 2.86%
A short-tempered psycho that takes hostages. 5 14.29%
An equal you can argue with and speak with candor. 7 20.00%
A "best friend" figure that you enjoy spending time with. 10 28.57%
A lame older sibling that you're proud of, but you think should lighten up. 1 2.86%
One of the cool parents, who lets you do things that other parents won't. 1 2.86%
Miss Cleo! Except He knows everything and doesn't have a fake accent. 3 8.57%
A con artist, who makes outlandish promises He can't keep. 2 5.71%
A deadbeat dad who created us, but ran away a long time ago. 4 11.43%
Voters: 35. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 04-23-2005, 09:40 AM   #16
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Originally posted by 80sU2isBest
Want to blame someone for genocide? Blame the people who commit these atrocious acts, not God.
I agree.

To note, however, God prescribes genocide in Deuteronomy and Joshua ("the Ban") for the Israelites' conquest of Canaan, and strikes down any Israelites who show any compassion towards them. This is the "psycho" God. And this is why I question the authority of the OT.

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Old 04-23-2005, 11:48 AM   #17
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I started to say an equal, but I don't really believe that.
So a best friend I can spend time with, was more accurate.

At this point I feel God is You and Me and even those who commit
atrocities and the governments who do nothing about it.
There are just so many belief's and non belief's that I suspect it is just all part of the great scheme of things that I of course, don't have the full picture of.
I just don't happen to believe this planet and all the planets of the universe just happened with no specific reason.

Edited to say: Even when alot of things that happen and reasons just don't make any sense, I try to remain hopeful we will one day know why!
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Old 04-23-2005, 12:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by 80sU2isBest
Why does God allow tsunamis to happen? The only reason I can give is that he allows nature to take its course.

But "genocide", I can address. Man has free will, man makes choices. God usually does not interfere with man's choices. Want to blame someone for genocide? Blame the people who commit these atrocious acts, not God.

i agree.

this is why i don't see God as a parent, and think that people who view him as such have a whole lot to answer for -- like why do tsunamis happen, and why does God not intervene when his children are being slaughtered in genocide. seems like, as a parent, this would be the only logical thing to do.

but i don't see God as a parent. i'm passionately agnostic, because i think any claims to certainty are self-delusional, which is why we call it *faith* and as such it should be filled with doubt and humility.

my conception of God is as a sort of starting point, a common place of origin, that everything in the universe comes from and to which we are all connected, and that which is within us is what is permanent and eternal and therefore we are all so tiny and insignificant and yet real and special and precious all in the same breath.

all else is just window dressing, to me.

just heard a great quote today: "religion is for people who are scared of hell; spirituality is for people who have been through hell."
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Old 04-23-2005, 12:09 PM   #19
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That's an interesting quote, Irvine, and I don't think your conception of God is far off at all.
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Old 04-23-2005, 12:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon


I agree.

To note, however, God prescribes genocide in Deuteronomy and Joshua ("the Ban") for the Israelites' conquest of Canaan, and strikes down any Israelites who show any compassion towards them. This is the "psycho" God. And this is why I question the authority of the OT.

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you forgot "The Gambler" who uses his believers as pawns, to be sacrificed to win a wager.
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Old 04-23-2005, 01:29 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

just heard a great quote today: "religion is for people who are scared of hell; spirituality is for people who have been through hell."
Excellent! post Irvine!

Love the quote also.
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Old 04-23-2005, 01:45 PM   #22
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It was done so that Ant could survive death and step into a mind-blowing other dimension called Heaven.
No need to get personal. I was only throwing up a quote for the sake of debate.

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Old 04-23-2005, 05:25 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by 80sU2isBest

Some deadbeat dad. He willingly gave his life on a cross to redeem you from your own sin.

Perhaps it is a matter of what has He done for me lately?

On a less irreverent note, while I would like to think so, I don't think He takes personal interest in me or in a lot of people. I will not presume that He doesn't take interest in you. That's for you to decide. I'd prefer to think of Him as a deadbeat dad than as a neurotic parent who plays favorites with His children. I don't get so angry that way.

I don't spend a lot of time worrying about sin and its consequences, although I try to follow my own ethical code and do intensely value the teachings of the Gospels, if not all the stories. I don't know that I believe in physical heaven and physical hell. However, I think it would be perfectly fair and reasonable if there is a heaven, that I don't get in.

What people believe is based on their own experiences and their own perceptions. I have no challenge to offer you on yours.

I agree with Irvine's response to 80's U2. And while I am not "passionately agnostic", for all intents and purposes I am at least a fluctating agnostic. It's hard to convert an apostate Christian. We can match you Biblical text for Biblical text. I'm not ignorant of the teachings. I just haven't had essential questions answered satisfactorily. You'll find that among many agnostics, I think.
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Old 04-23-2005, 08:42 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anthony

"He strung up his own son like a side of veal; I'd shudder to think what He'd do to me".

And I thought my dad was bad...
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Old 04-23-2005, 09:39 PM   #25
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Sorry Ant.

To comment further on the topic of the crucifixion and what it tells us, I'd say that it shows that God understands the problem of pain. Being understood is a very underrated need of humanity. A person can feel totally forsaken and discarded when no one understands them. For a person that has had to deal with alot of pain and suffering in this life, the suffering God is the only God who can understand. The Passion of the Christ illustrated what the Gospels have told us along, and those images resonate with people who suffer. It's not pleasant, but it disproves the stigma of God being distant and indifferent.

Obviously, the concept of a suffering God could be seen as contradictory to an all-powerful God. However, I can find plenty of reasons to believe in God's power. As a software developer, I have a great deal of respect for enterprise-level software systems and the layers upon layers of complexity that comprise them. Consequently, I am amazed to study the human genome and the 3 billion base pairs that it contains. The amount of information that it holds is staggering, but even more astounding is the specifity of that information. The human genome is one heck of a piece of software, and trust me, software does not write itself (otherwise I'd be looking for work ). If God created that, then I have no problem believing in His-Her power.
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Old 04-24-2005, 06:47 AM   #26
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A person can feel totally forsaken and discarded when no one understands them.
Indeed. Even Jesus exclaimed 'Oh Father, why has thou foresaken me?' Interesting points.


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Old 04-24-2005, 02:25 PM   #27
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"God is self and self is God and God is a person like myself." - Victor Anderson (founder of Feri tradition witchcraft)

Somewhere in there is my concept of God. Like Sue 4u2, I almost said my equal but that is not it. I try to see God in everyone, look for the divine in everybody, even when the angry parts of me would want to demonize them or make their beliefs "evil".
God is a person that knows my highest potential and wants to see me reach it - and for that matter knows the highest human potential and wants to see us reach it...God is a person that is man and woman and all of the in betweens of gender and genderlessness. God is the budding tree, the fullness of the moon, and the death at the end of it all. God is a sensual lover and God is an orgasm. And as long as it is consensual, God does not care how you get them!
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Old 04-24-2005, 03:45 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anthony

Indeed. Even Jesus exclaimed 'Oh Father, why has thou foresaken me?' Interesting points.
Ant.
As a side note, it is debated amongst Biblical scholars whether he said that or "For this I was spared"; in other words "This is my destiny".
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Old 04-24-2005, 04:26 PM   #29
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As a side note, it is debated amongst Biblical scholars whether he said that or "For this I was spared"; in other words "This is my destiny".
Very true.

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Old 04-24-2005, 04:55 PM   #30
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I have absolutely no idea who God is or how to even describe Him.
Liked your quote, Irvine.
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