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Old 11-03-2013, 06:39 PM   #41
Canderis
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But how can something never have started?




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Old 11-03-2013, 09:57 PM   #42
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Even though this is an old thread I was talking with a friend today and fealt like I would share this. It seems that atheism and Christianity bump heads alot so I'll use those two as my example. Lets say man#1 was athiest and man#2 was Christian. Lets day one day Christianity is wrong and atheism is the correct view neither man lost anything. But if one day Christianity is proven true then man#1 lost alot.


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Old 11-03-2013, 10:14 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Canderis View Post
But how can something never have started?
Well it starts itself through its own end and creates a time loop sort of, it's hard to explain. . .
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:29 PM   #44
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Well it starts itself through its own end and creates a time loop sort of, it's hard to explain. . .
I know what you mean, I've come up with that before, but it is another concept I cannot comprehend.

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Even though this is an old thread I was talking with a friend today and fealt like I would share this. It seems that atheism and Christianity bump heads alot so I'll use those two as my example. Lets say man#1 was athiest and man#2 was Christian. Lets day one day Christianity is wrong and atheism is the correct view neither man lost anything. But if one day Christianity is proven true then man#1 lost alot.
What if islam is true? Then they both lost a lot. It's not a 2 party system where if you 'believe' your soul is automatically saved if the other one turns to be false. There's a lot of religions out there. Picking one at random in hopes its right is like trying to win the lottery when you don't even know if a single number will be drawn. Plus believing just for the sake of 'maybe it's right' really isn't believing, is it? Its like saying i love you with your fingers crossed.




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Old 11-03-2013, 10:55 PM   #45
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Alright. I'm an atheist. And I hate it. The most frightening thought to me is that when we die, that's it. I can't imagine what true nothing is like. I just cannot grasp it. But unfortunately, because of how my mind works, that is what I believe happens when we die.
Perhaps another way of looking at it is that you are left unsatisfied with what you know and realize with harsh reality, intellect, fact? If that was the end-all-be-all, then it would be enough. But it isn't the end-all-be-all.


Quote:
I really wish I could believe in something different, a religion or something, just to help make the end a little less scary, but I can't just believe in something to believe in something. I can't do it. I could say I do, but then there's still that thought hidden behind the believing exterior. It's really hard to have a positive look on life and think like this. Does anyone else feel the same way? Can anyone help me change my belief?
Well, I've been in a similar place. While I cannot say I completely believe everything in religion, I relaxed my disbelief in the idea there's something more to reality. See, I used to automatically shut it out just because. Then I came to the realization that I was just as strict and lacking for lenience as some theists out there. Now I like to think I'm a happy medium. highly intellectual folk may think me whacky, highly religious folk may call me heretic. I am what I am.

Thing is we're different people. I have my reasons I came back to faith. I can share them if you'd like but do realize it isn't going to be easy for me.


I have met atheists who not only acknowledge spirituality, but profess it because they recognize it is another aspect and dimension to who we are, and thus it is part of our overall health.

Can I help you change? That depends. You say you want to, but you can't.
With all due respect: Are you even sure you have any idea what you want?

Before you can know what you want, do you even know yourself? How can you be sure? These are things you can answer to me if you want but you need to ask yourself and answer them for yourself. Nobody else can make you believe anything.

I want to help you by encouraging you, because I myself am seeking encouragement in this point in my life. In order to do that, you have to meet me halfway.

No, I do not have all the answers to any questions you might ask.


"I cant see S***! --YOU GO TO HELL!" --Tourettes guy
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Old 11-04-2013, 06:32 AM   #46
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But how can something never have started?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Universe_from_Nothing
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Old 11-04-2013, 11:27 AM   #47
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Even Wikipedia showcases the main flaw of that book:

"use of the term nothing to refer to a quantum vacuum"

Quantum vacuum is not nothing.



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Old 11-05-2013, 05:10 PM   #48
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Exactly...the only question you really are left with is what is it that always was and didn't need some kind of origin......God or matter/energy.


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Old 11-05-2013, 10:26 PM   #49
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@Canderis: I'm curious to know your sense of self. This thread is about you afterall. So please give me an idea how you see yourself. I ask because while repeatable results and scientific soundness are one thing, ultimately YOU are the only truth you actually know. Nobody else can know what you know like you know it. Life is about your journey to find the truth for yourself.

Nobody and nothing can make you believe in anything, or disbelieve for that matter. I think your concerns are very real.


@ above posts: I don't know if "Super Uniformity" is what this was called, but there was a position out there which states: What is happening has always happened and will always happen. Some see this as a means to explain away supernatural, others merely see it as too similar to God having always existed thus invalid and dismissible as such.

Theories of Energy transfer IMO is ironically not all that different from reincarnation--in fact I joke it is the atheist version of reincarnation.



Lastly:
This isn't so much a reply to J7 as it's reading over J7's post I see something I have to reply to:
Quote:
by Bertrand Russell,
“I think all the great religions of the world-Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam and Communism-both untrue and harmful. It is evident as a matter of logic that, since they disagree, not more than one of them can be true” preface to 'Why I am not a Christian', emphasis [J7's]
Curious Judaism, Shintoism, Zen, and others (like political beliefs) didn't make it onto that list.

Perhaps Buddhism has qualities which rival religiosity which make it understandable, but the statement of it being a religion is incorrect. It is a philosophy and a way of life, and is compatible (or at least can be) with religions. Both objectively and in my personal experience, Buddhists don't worship him as a God, but rather Bhudda means 'elightened one' or 'one with highest enlightenment'.

There have been Christian and Moslem Samurai.
Shaolin teachings originally came from Bhuddist monks, their ways are compatible with religions like Christianity and Moslem too.

Zen, like Buddhism, is much the same in that regard. It's (in summary) about balance and concerns itself with the actual, with what is.

And don't forget atheists can practice Buddhism and Zen as well!

Also, anyone who thinks Buddhism is just all about peace and pacifism are very very naive about just what extremes the Yin-Yang covers. I'd suggest a trip to visit the world tree in person--then come back and talk about it. I'll just leave it at that.


"I cant see S***! --YOU GO TO HELL!" --Tourettes guy
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Old 11-05-2013, 10:52 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Darth Avlectus View Post
@Canderis: I'm curious to know your sense of self. This thread is about you afterall. So please give me an idea how you see yourself. I ask because while repeatable results and scientific soundness are one thing, ultimately YOU are the only truth you actually know. Nobody else can know what you know like you know it. Life is about your journey to find the truth for yourself.

Nobody and nothing can make you believe in anything, or disbelieve for that matter. I think your concerns are very real.
When I created this thread I was in a very different mindset than I am in now. I was actually quite depressed and it caused me to think about this subject a lot. Since then I have not been depressed really, but the though still comes to mind often. Saying death is my greatest fear would be a false statement, my biggest fear is 'nothing'. That 'nothing' is what follows death. I'm afraid of that because it is a concept my Mind cannot grasp, what is true nothingness.

This is all I know to say to answer that question, but I not afraid to say more. I'm just not sure what other information about myself is needed for this conversation.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Avlectus View Post
Lastly:
This isn't so much a reply to J7 as it's reading over J7's post I see something I have to reply to:


Curious Judaism, Shintoism, Zen, and others (like political beliefs) didn't make it onto that list.

Perhaps Buddhism has qualities which rival religiosity which make it understandable, but the statement of it being a religion is incorrect. It is a philosophy and a way of life, and is compatible (or at least can be) with religions. Both objectively and in my personal experience, Buddhists don't worship him as a God, but rather Bhudda means 'elightened one' or 'one with highest enlightenment'.

There have been Christian and Moslem Samurai.
Shaolin teachings originally came from Bhuddist monks, their ways are compatible with religions like Christianity and Moslem too.

Zen, like Buddhism, is much the same in that regard. It's (in summary) about balance and concerns itself with the actual, with what is.

And don't forget atheists can practice Buddhism and Zen as well!

Also, anyone who thinks Buddhism is just all about peace and pacifism are very very naive about just what extremes the Yin-Yang covers. I'd suggest a trip to visit the world tree in person--then come back and talk about it. I'll just leave it at that.
May I ask, are you buddhist?




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Old 11-06-2013, 12:16 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by Canderis View Post
This is all I know to say to answer that question, but I not afraid to say more. I'm just not sure what other information about myself is needed for this conversation.
Look to the last post I made for reference:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Avlectus View Post

Quote:
Alright. I'm an atheist. And I hate it. The most frightening thought to me is that when we die, that's it. I can't imagine what true nothing is like. I just cannot grasp it. But unfortunately, because of how my mind works, that is what I believe happens when we die.
Perhaps another way of looking at it is that you are left unsatisfied with what you know and realize with harsh reality, intellect, fact? If that was the end-all-be-all, then it would be enough. But it isn't the end-all-be-all.

Quote:
I really wish I could believe in something different, a religion or something, just to help make the end a little less scary, but I can't just believe in something to believe in something. I can't do it. I could say I do, but then there's still that thought hidden behind the believing exterior. It's really hard to have a positive look on life and think like this. Does anyone else feel the same way? Can anyone help me change my belief?
Well, I've been in a similar place. While I cannot say I completely believe everything in religion, I relaxed my disbelief in the idea there's something more to reality. See, I used to automatically shut it out just because. Then I came to the realization that I was just as strict and lacking for lenience as some theists out there. Now I like to think I'm a happy medium. Highly intellectual folk may think me whacky, highly religious folk may call me heretic. I am what I am.

Thing is we're different people. I have my reasons I came back to faith. I can share them if you'd like but do realize it isn't going to be easy for me.

I have met atheists who not only acknowledge spirituality, but profess it because they recognize it is another aspect and dimension to who we are, and thus it is part of our overall health.

Can I help you change? That depends. You say you want to, but you can't.
With all due respect: Are you even sure you have any idea what you want?

Before you can know what you want, do you even know yourself? How can you be sure? These are things you can answer to me if you want but you need to ask yourself and answer them for yourself. Nobody else can make you believe anything.

I want to help you by encouraging you, because I myself am seeking encouragement in this point in my life. In order to do that, you have to meet me halfway.

No, I do not have all the answers to any questions you might ask.
I'd like to add: though my reasons for returning to faith are my own, I doubt they'd be of much help to you. Your life is you, not me.

Yes I may faithfully 'believe' something but honestly at the end of the day I probably don't know any more than you do (Well, tested against objective standards anyway!)--I can only presume. We can neither prove nor disprove a negative.

Facts: We all die. We don't know what happens afterward.

I'm not going to pretend some bull**** like I have answers for you what happens after, be it through science or mysticism. But I can try to help you see this in a different way. What is important here is why you see things in life the way you do. Much of the reason for that, possibly, is how you view yourself.

Life is about the journey. In the end are you going to be proud to have lived or not?

Quote:
May I ask, are you buddhist?
You may ask, and no I am not. More or less am freelance/non denominational Christian-probably have more in common with an agnostic. However, I'm not going to impose upon you. You've probably had more than your fair share of THAT--am I right?

I am studying and practicing the philosophy of Shaolin. If possible I want to help you at least get a perspective on what you can control and change in your own life.

Why? Not because I think I can be some invincible badass like Jet Lee or something. Simply because at 29 I need to learn
1) new ways to help myself and
2) to feel encouraged in order to better self-motivate.

The best way I can do that is to help others and to encourage others. Like yourself. So if you do not mind, how 'bout we start from the above quoted post?
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Old 06-08-2014, 01:24 AM   #52
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This thread is old but now as the smoke begins to clear from my last year of high school and I am free to think on my own again my mind has begun to wander back here again. I am young, I just turned 19, and I should have many years to go. I don't face death as an immediate threat but it could come at anytime without warning. It's unpredictable and inevitable.
Since starting this thread a lot has changed in my life. First off, a lot of my life will be completely different in 3 months. I have been so busy preparing for college, moving to another state, finishing school, and other things have kept me so busy and so drained that I have not been able to really think much about anything. This is what has really been the best fix for my problem, being too busy to care.
Second, I have a reply for what was mentioned a few times before in this thread, that a way to conquer the fear of dying is to appreciate what I have. A lot of great and wonderful people have become very prominent in my life lately and I am so lucky for the life I had, I'm terrified to lose it.
Lastly I have cut off any kind of faith(I was agnostic before) from what I believe. I am studying to become a computer scientist, a completely logic based profession, and in a way this has led me to my current mind-set of seeing is believing. I need to see proof to believe anything. What I want is something I know I won't get from a thread on the Internet. What I want is the truth. I am lately finding it pointless to speculate on the concept of "nothing" because there is no truth. Religion is the answer science can't provide, but I believe science is the only answer. If truth can't be found in science, there is no truth I can find. I won't know the truth while I am alive, and if true nothingness follows death then there was never any truth in life to begin with. I also feel like if a God, as shown in religions in Christianity existed, why would he give us the ability to think logically and not give us clear evidence of his existence. I'm not trying to start a debate, I'm really not up for one right now, that's just one major flaw I find in most religions. That just seems like a curse to me, giving us the freedom to believe God doesn't exist and not giving us clear, indisputable from every prospective, evidence.

I feel like I have grown up a lot these last 6 months and I'm realizing now what I truly fear is change. What is death but the final change on earth? I am afraid change won't be better than where I came from and I can never go back.

I don't think I can change my mindset on faith, but what do I know? I'm just a kid.





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Old 06-08-2014, 07:26 AM   #53
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You are younger than me?!?


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Old 06-10-2014, 02:48 AM   #54
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I'm glad for your clarity. It's one thing I don't think any of us are alone in seeking.

Apologies in advance for such a long post. I'm sharing with you what I wish someone had told me when I was graduating high school.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Canderis View Post
I don't face death as an immediate threat but it could come at anytime without warning. It's unpredictable and inevitable.

Since starting this thread a lot has changed in my life. *brevity* things have kept me so busy and so drained that I have not been able to really think much about anything. This is what has really been the best fix for my problem, being too busy to care.
Actually, being busy is a healthy thing to stave off depression and other things that tend to continue to bother us but linger annoyingly out of reach. The important thing is to keep yourself going. However, don't let it be an excuse to keep running away from problems you *can* solve.

I guess the shaolin would say "use momentum to move onward instead of just moving around". Something like that.

Quote:
Second, I have a reply for what was mentioned a few times before in this thread, that a way to conquer the fear of dying is to appreciate what I have. A lot of great and wonderful people have become very prominent in my life lately and I am so lucky for the life I had, I'm terrified to lose it.
I once thought that way, fearful of loss. Ultimately almost everything slipped away from me anyway in spite of my best efforts. Slow and agonizing. If I can share anything I wish I had known 14-15 years ago is that while it's good to be conscientious (as you are), don't become paralyzed with that fear.

You will undoubtedly hit bumps and face setbacks. How you respond to them is what's important. Attitude is everything--this from a guy who scoffed and never believed I would be saying it. Ever. How you see yourself is just as important, if not more so, than how others view you.

Quote:
Lastly I have cut off any kind of faith(I was agnostic before) from what I believe. I am studying to become a computer scientist, a completely logic based profession, and in a way this has led me to my current mind-set of seeing is believing. I need to see proof to believe anything. What I want is something I know I won't get from a thread on the Internet. What I want is the truth. I am lately finding it pointless to speculate on the concept of "nothing" because there is no truth. Religion is the answer science can't provide, but I believe science is the only answer. If truth can't be found in science, there is no truth I can find. I won't know the truth while I am alive, and if true nothingness follows death then there was never any truth in life to begin with. I also feel like if a God, as shown in religions in Christianity existed, why would he give us the ability to think logically and not give us clear evidence of his existence. I'm not trying to start a debate, I'm really not up for one right now, that's just one major flaw I find in most religions. That just seems like a curse to me, giving us the freedom to believe God doesn't exist and not giving us clear, indisputable from every prospective, evidence.
Though I failed in becoming a Laser/Electro-Optical Engineer, I am not entirely clueless in these matters. We're not machines, though, and even if you don't believe it to be a strength, we can still do things that fundamentally binary logic cannot. Save reproducing, we have otherwise been unable to replicate this. As in AI. Computers (currently) must have data which is decide-able. Humans can handle illogical things, AI can't; illogical things do terrible things to code because it is not decide-able. (1)

Becoming educated is one thing; using that education to dismiss everything else because it "doesn't fit" is quite another. I find the latter amusing when those same kind of people should talk down on others for being "ignorant".

How you see the 'big picture' is up to you. Entirely. You already realize there's something more to life than just what science has established. I would simply ask you to keep an open mind as to the possibilities beyond that and to not use your education to dismiss something, or to snuff it out simply because it "doesn't fit". Tempting as it is to criticize, correct, argue with, and browbeat other people, don't. I'll elaborate why.


I've actually met Nils J. Nilsson in person. Nilsson is the author of The Quest For Artificial Intelligence (2), which you will undoubtedly come across in your studies. Probably an apex figure of the sort of professional you wish to become.
What I observed about his personal character: He, despite all his greatness in his field, is an unassuming man. Humble. Much like yourself, he doesn't desire to debate or correct people in these matters. He simply cares for "what is". He has nothing to prove.
I was amazed that for as accomplished as he is in academics, he didn't feel any need to belittle other people, and he wasn't pompous. He was sharp and bright, even as old as he is. I think part of the reason his work is so widely accepted is because of the kind of man he is. Social adeptness is key to being attractive in many ways. Welcome and invite gains the recognition that "qualifications" alone never will.

Beyond your chosen field there is your truth, personally, and nobody else can live, quantify, or explain it for you. I'm not talking about becoming a believer in anything. I'm talking about being unassuming when it comes to things you don't know or cannot know, which can't be explained.

Which brings me to my next point: Spiritual enlightenment doesn't necessarily need to be "superstitious nonsense". One such way of it is the art of Zen. Zen concerns itself with "what is", and with balance. Very much so about truth. You don't need to get off into every aspect of it to understand this is its main goal.

An indirect example of Zen:
Show spoiler


TL;DR: Don't be surprised to learn that you're human. So be patient and take your time to learn and grow into yourself.

Quote:
I feel like I have grown up a lot these last 6 months and I'm realizing now what I truly fear is change. What is death but the final change on earth? I am afraid change won't be better than where I came from and I can never go back.

I don't think I can change my mindset on faith, but what do I know? I'm just a kid.
-There's things you can learn as soon as you wish, then there's things you can only learn with age.
-Courage is not the absence of fear. It is continuing on in spite of that fear.
-The easiest way to lose your power, is to believe you don't have it.
-The word "just" is terrible. You know why? Because it trivializes. Don't trivialize.

You are the only truth you know, so believe in yourself. Also Self almighty will eventually fail, so do not forsake others who live among you. Even that odd janitor with the glasses who gets on your nerves when he kicks you out of your study hall because it's 10:30 at night.

Uncertainty will turn you into a recluse if you let it. It doesn't always need to be feared. In these situations, sometimes knowing the worst that can happen *is* what causes you to lose out. Like a self fulfilling prophecy. When Han Solo told Threepio "never tell me the odds", this is the very thing he meant.



(1) Partial credit to fellow megaman fan Daniel Page on youtube for his layman explanation of these things. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGRhqXN9ul4
(2) http://www.amazon.com/Quest-Artifici.../dp/0521122937


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