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A Happy Slave Doesn't Require Total Freedom

Whether you believe in a higher power or not, this forum is dedicated to the topic of religion and spirituality. We live in a diverse world with different morals and ideas when it comes to our beliefs, so come in and share your thoughts.

Postby humphreys » Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:30 am

greeney2 wrote:Humphreys you discribed a hypnotists act.


No.

Hypnosis=power of suggestion

What I described=electrically stimulating an area of the brain to force certain actions.

Another interesting fact, these people actually believed they WILLED the acts themselves.
"All of our behavior can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge: this has always suggested that free will is an illusion."

- Sam Harris
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Postby at1with0 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:49 am

I think greeny's mistake is in believing that God is intangible (like love) and/or invisible, available through no path other than faith.

I wonder how many people believe what the periodic table of the elements says, for example that Carbon has 12 nucleons. Have you done the experiments? Do you believe everything you read in a science textbook but not believe everything you read in a history book or scripture? Why is that? I think it's because the statements made in a science textbook are at least internally consistent and if the bible, for example, were internally consistent then it would be harder to ignore. There is blind faith in science, logic, and religion.

I am, for better or for worse, eternally skeptical.

http://www.darklyrics.com/lyrics/morbidangel/gatewaystoannihilation.html#5 wrote:Awaken to a light of knowing
all your truth was lies
and the faith which you embraced
has left you blind
deceived like the fools that surround you
it came with ease
unfulfilled were the days of your being
but now you will see


I constantly consider the possibility that all my truth is a lie. It erodes the confirmation bias that I exhibit. These lines apply to me at all times, even when I think I've got it; especially when I think I've got it.

With relative perfection, it seems to be a fact that there is always the temptation to go to the other side. Eve was not prepared to face the temptation of an unknown promised to be even more pleasure. The promise of pleasure is very alluring to humans. Anything to keep us alive and on planet Earth. :D

It is curious that every omniscient being knew that Eve was going to decide that the only way to get rid of temptation is to give in to it. Every omniscient being knew that mankind's faith that Jesus' act of sacrifice leads to salvation would waver in the future.

It's all part of the plan.

Truth has an enslaving quality to it. If it got out that "God exists" is a true statement, then humphreys would be a slave to the facts, even though that truth would probably make him unhappy... He stated that he values truth over happiness and that's good because truth is rarely pleasure. They say that truth sets you free but it actually confines. Many people would be happy to be a slave to truth, in keeping with the spirit of the thread. I myself am, ultimately, a slave to truth but I see and am drawn towards a different light.
"it is easy to grow crazy"
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Postby humphreys » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:00 pm

at1with0 wrote:I wonder how many people believe what the periodic table of the elements says, for example that Carbon has 12 nucleons. Have you done the experiments? Do you believe everything you read in a science textbook but not believe everything you read in a history book or scripture? Why is that? I think it's because the statements made in a science textbook are at least internally consistent and if the bible, for example, were internally consistent then it would be harder to ignore.


It's not just consistency but replicability.

I personally have not done the experiments, but I know many have, and I know science attempts to refute theories and even awards those who can reliably prove others wrong.

I think it is my knowledge of how science works that makes me confident in the truth of those scientific statements. Science is beautifully designed so that laypersons can trust in the findings of others when those findings have been well replicated and peer reviewed. Not only laypersons, but people in entirely different fields can trust the findings of those in other fields and work on that knowledge in the confidence that they are working from sound foundations.

The same is somewhat true of religion, in that we may be told we can pray to God and ask him for things, communicate with him, and test for his existence. The Bible says faith can move mountains, for instance, that is another thing we can test. But these are all experiments that I and many other former believers have tried and found to be incorrect claims.

In science, if someone claims something works for them, but others cannot replicate or validate their findings, they aren't going to be accepted as scientific truth.
"All of our behavior can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge: this has always suggested that free will is an illusion."

- Sam Harris
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Postby at1with0 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:36 pm

humphreys wrote:I personally have not done the experiments, but I know many have, and I know science attempts to refute theories and even awards those who can reliably prove others wrong.


You trust that many have. That and it's easy for many experiments to point to the truth of a hypothesis that is false.

I think it is my knowledge of how science works that makes me confident in the truth of those scientific statements. Science is beautifully designed so that laypersons can trust in the findings of others when those findings have been well replicated and peer reviewed. Not only laypersons, but people in entirely different fields can trust the findings of those in other fields and work on that knowledge in the confidence that they are working from sound foundations.


I don't share in that trust blindly.

The same is somewhat true of religion, in that we may be told we can pray to God and ask him for things, communicate with him, and test for his existence. The Bible says faith can move mountains, for instance, that is another thing we can test. But these are all experiments that I and many other former believers have tried and found to be incorrect claims.


Many experiments regarding optics performed by all blind people may not be very indicative of what the truth is.

In science, if someone claims something works for them, but others cannot replicate or validate their findings, they aren't going to be accepted as scientific truth.


You know that the phrase scientific truth is an oxymoron for the reasons you stated earlier. :dance:
"it is easy to grow crazy"
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Postby humphreys » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:52 pm

at1with0 wrote:
humphreys wrote:I personally have not done the experiments, but I know many have, and I know science attempts to refute theories and even awards those who can reliably prove others wrong.


You trust that many have. That and it's easy for many experiments to point to the truth of a hypothesis that is false.


I would call it confidence based on logic and experience.

at1with0 wrote:
I think it is my knowledge of how science works that makes me confident in the truth of those scientific statements. Science is beautifully designed so that laypersons can trust in the findings of others when those findings have been well replicated and peer reviewed. Not only laypersons, but people in entirely different fields can trust the findings of those in other fields and work on that knowledge in the confidence that they are working from sound foundations.


I don't share in that trust blindly.


The trust I have is far from blind!

at1with0 wrote:
The same is somewhat true of religion, in that we may be told we can pray to God and ask him for things, communicate with him, and test for his existence. The Bible says faith can move mountains, for instance, that is another thing we can test. But these are all experiments that I and many other former believers have tried and found to be incorrect claims.


Many experiments regarding optics performed by all blind people may not be very indicative of what the truth is.


True, but science can tell the difference between blind and sighted people, and adjust their experiments accordingly. We have proved such a thing as sight exists, we can't say the same for whatever it is religious people are supposed to have which unreligious don't.

There are other key difference. When sight fails, we can know that merely from observations of the eyes and brain activity. It would be factored in as part of the experiment.

at1with0 wrote:
In science, if someone claims something works for them, but others cannot replicate or validate their findings, they aren't going to be accepted as scientific truth.


You know that the phrase scientific truth is an oxymoron for the reasons you stated earlier. :dance:


Depends on the definition of truth, doesn't it? In this case, it's sufficient confidence based on consistent replication of observation and experiment.
"All of our behavior can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge: this has always suggested that free will is an illusion."

- Sam Harris
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Postby humphreys » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:53 pm

I apologize for the sloppy writing and typos, it must be getting late! :mrgreen:
"All of our behavior can be traced to biological events about which we have no conscious knowledge: this has always suggested that free will is an illusion."

- Sam Harris
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Postby qmark » Sun Apr 01, 2012 1:52 pm

frrostedman wrote:From a believer's point of view, especially a Reformed Christian believer's point of view, the main theme of the bible boils down essentially to this:

God placed Adam and Eve on Earth, in a beautiful place; but a testing ground. Adam and Eve had the full freedom to do anything they chose, but for 2 things. Don't eat from the tree of life, and don't eat from the tree of knowledge. God watched to see if Adam and Eve could live with 99% freedom. The answer is no. Adam and Eve (and as ones who represent mankind perfectly, all of us) could not be satisfied unless they could do anything they wanted. And so it goes... they ate from the tree, commited cosmic treason, and plunged all of creation into sin.

Later, another Adam--the perfect Adam--arrived on the scene; God incarnate; Jesus the Christ. Christ, in a new Covenant with mankind, paid the price for our sins, died on the cross, and offered us a way out.

And Christians since that time, now, and in the future, are reborn and in us, the relationship God intended is reestablished. Christ bought us and paid for us. Just as in the old days a slave was bought and paid for and then obligated to serve its new master; so then are we, the Christian believers. We were purchased for the ultimate price, as slaves to Christ, and we are completely happy with the arrangement. We don't have utter and complete autonomy, nor do we desire it.

The unbelieving don't understand how someone could be a slave, without 100% autonomy, and be satisified. Not meant as demeaning, but, just like Satan in the garden, the unbelieving ceaselessly strive to make us understand that we could be happier, we just don't know it. If only we are freed from our Master to enjoy the benefit of full autonomy, then we would understand how much better it is to live that way.

But I, as one who transformed relatively late in life, have seen the situation from both sides. And I can tell you unequivocally, without any doubt whatsoever, that life is infinitely better as a slave to Christ, with 99% freedom and the assurance of immortality. The alternative, like a shiny red apple, may seem appealling; but we as believers know that the benefits full autonomy has to offer are fleeting and ultimately lead to death.

Your thoughts?


There have been occasions where, as a slave, I “broke free” and exercised “complete freedom” which resulted in anything but happiness.
I agree 1000%.
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Postby at1with0 » Sun Apr 01, 2012 2:28 pm

But do you Christians have the freedom to be nasty??

"it is easy to grow crazy"
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Postby greeney2 » Sun Apr 01, 2012 5:59 pm

humphreys wrote:Things created by the brain do not have to be imaginary.

Your whole experience of the real world is a perception generated by the brain, that does not mean the real world is not a real thing.

Interestingly, the book I am reading right now talks about free will, and how it is nothing more than an illusion. Subjects were tested and asked to make certain bodily movements, and to track when they consciously decided to make that movement. The crazy thing is, the brain KNEW the movement was going o happen, and readied itself for it, SIGNIFICANTLY before the will to make that action was registered. So the will itself, or the feeling of will, was just a feeling created by the brain after it had decided to do something anyway.

Thought provoking stuff.


I'm not understanding the test, were the subject awake? I don't see how this is a test of free will. Were they monitoring brain waves and timing to a physical movement? Not sure individual reaction time is a test of free will, rather than each persons time to process and react.
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Postby greeney2 » Sun Apr 01, 2012 6:11 pm

at1with0 wrote:I think greeny's mistake is in believing that God is intangible (like love) and/or invisible, available through no path other than faith.

I wonder how many people believe what the periodic table of the elements says, for example that Carbon has 12 nucleons. Have you done the experiments? Do you believe everything you read in a science textbook but not believe everything you read in a history book or scripture? Why is that? I think it's because the statements made in a science textbook are at least internally consistent and if the bible, for example, were internally consistent then it would be harder to ignore. There is blind faith in science, logic, and religion.

I am, for better or for worse, eternally skeptical.

http://www.darklyrics.com/lyrics/morbidangel/gatewaystoannihilation.html#5 wrote:Awaken to a light of knowing
all your truth was lies
and the faith which you embraced
has left you blind
deceived like the fools that surround you
it came with ease
unfulfilled were the days of your being
but now you will see


I constantly consider the possibility that all my truth is a lie. It erodes the confirmation bias that I exhibit. These lines apply to me at all times, even when I think I've got it; especially when I think I've got it.

With relative perfection, it seems to be a fact that there is always the temptation to go to the other side. Eve was not prepared to face the temptation of an unknown promised to be even more pleasure. The promise of pleasure is very alluring to humans. Anything to keep us alive and on planet Earth. :D

It is curious that every omniscient being knew that Eve was going to decide that the only way to get rid of temptation is to give in to it. Every omniscient being knew that mankind's faith that Jesus' act of sacrifice leads to salvation would waver in the future.

It's all part of the plan.

Truth has an enslaving quality to it. If it got out that "God exists" is a true statement, then humphreys would be a slave to the facts, even though that truth would probably make him unhappy... He stated that he values truth over happiness and that's good because truth is rarely pleasure. They say that truth sets you free but it actually confines. Many people would be happy to be a slave to truth, in keeping with the spirit of the thread. I myself am, ultimately, a slave to truth but I see and am drawn towards a different light.


No, I did not mean to imply I thought God was intangable. I tried to give an example of something that is intangable, as an example of some out of the physical world, that science deal with. Love, other emotions, Luck, compassion, etc. I think people accept science as proven like the periodic chart of elements, laws of physics, Mathmatics rules and formulas so they do not question them. History, scripture, writings have a lot of inconsistancies, including the Bible. I know I am stepping right into the Lions Den with that statement, but this is why there are so many religions, they have inturpeted things differently. People study the Bible for a lifetime.
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