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Thread: Anomalies

  1. #31
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    So far, we have one example and it developed us. Odds are 100% based on available examples.

    We also know they, if things didn't work the way that they do, we wouldn't be around to be discussing it (weak anthropic hypothesis) and so the proper conditions are, in this case, self selecting.

    We don't know if there is a reason, an intelligence behind the way the universe works or not. We do know that evolution already explains why species are interdependent and fit together so well, so that belief (or lack of it) cannot be determined scientifically.

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    That's my story and I'm sticking to it...

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celeste Chalfonte View Post
    There, the title of the thread should ensure that only reasonably literate people drop in to contribute.

    Now, here's the substance.

    I really like church. I love church music. I sang in the choir from probably first or second grade through the end of junior high. My dad was on the vestry. I was president of the junior EYC (Episcopal youth group) in our parish. I was the youngest person ever confirmed in our diocese, perhaps because I really enjoyed understanding and learning the meaning of the liturgy, the history of the church and Christianity, the philosophic and theological concepts. I really wanted to take Hebrew until I found out I would have to go to Hebrew school with all the much younger siblings of my Jewish classmates at school.

    Even today, when I haven't believed in decades, I like the way a church builds community. When I would take my mom and HRH to church, I enjoyed the music and the people and the social events. I enjoy listening to an educated, thoughtful and articulate priest/pastor/minister analyze and explain the ancient literature in the historic context that makes sense of it. I enjoy the reading of the Gospel and the Epistle, because I can enjoy the story and the poetic language without needing to accept it as literal truth, any more than I would any other literature.

    The church never harmed me. The church never rejected me. I don't hate the church and I'm not mad at it. The church never told me I was disordered or evil or a sick person who needed to change. SOME churches would have, but I never personally experienced that. And just as the fact that some parents reject their gay kids is no reason for me to be angry at or hate my parents, it would be equally absurd for me to hate the church because other churches rejected gay people.

    Sometimes I'm sad in church, because I look at those who believe, and I think, "It must be comforting to think there is an afterlife, and that you'll spend it reunited with everyone you love." Some Christians talk about how much effort it takes to be Christian, but I suspect that certainty is a great comfort also. The thing is, I could fake that, but it wouldn't have the same effect. And I just can't see any meaningful difference between what contemporary religious people call "faith" and what we consider, in ancient or less advanced contemporary societies, to be "mythology."

    How is the story of Adam and Eve intrinsically less fanciful than Native American creation myths? How is the tale of the banishment from Eden, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, or Noah's ark less an allegory than the Pandora myth?

    These are the questions that led me away from faith. Christians tend to assume that some bad experience drives people away from the church, which makes it easy to dismiss atheism as if it were a childish tantrum. Especially gay people, because it seems to be presumed we were badly treated by the church. Not me. I like church just fine, the same as I like Christmas trees and Easter baskets. I just no longer believe in Santa Claus, the Easter bunny or God.

    Some people do leave the church because of bad experiences. Those are often the atheists I can't stand to be around because they're often angry.

    I don't really have an answer right off hand about what makes Christianity more real than the others. Years ago, I asked God to prove to me that Christianity was the one true religion. The answer I'm pretty sure I heard was "No, this is about faith." Since I've accepted, I've since then found some answers I wanted back then, but not all.

    I will say that the flood story is accepted world wide. Even in Aztec culture, which should have been separated from the rest of the world, they accept the flood story. It's been pointed out that Peter (which means rock) is actually in other stories. When I look closer at the bible, I'm finding that Jesus renamed him that. So, no big deal. I also know that Jesus mentioned using parables a lot in the bible so we'd better understand what God wanted. Who is to say some of the Old Testament isn't the same way?

    Just my thoughts. I hope you didn't find them illiterate.
    And with black men being killed on camera, riots, and the president trying to destroy free speech welcome to Level 6 of Jumanji.

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