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The Candid Canonist - Christian Thoughts

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 frrostedman » Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:51 pm

I guess you followed his "garbled logic" in like manner. Your alcoholic comparison is... quite pitiful, really.

In any event, you didn't answer Sproul's questions. ;)
"But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about Jesus being a great teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to." C.S. Lewis
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Postby humphreys » Tue Dec 01, 2009 2:59 pm

If we reject Sproul's logic that coming from nothing makes us nothing, the question is easy to answer. I have empathy and respect for fellow human beings.
"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."

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Postby screamzero » Tue Dec 01, 2009 9:26 pm

Item7 wrote:Hi,

I agree, Humphreys. I think The Big Bang was the beginning of our Universe. I like the theory of 'bubble universes'. As far as how long these other universes existed, who knows. Our Universe did have a beginning though, that was my point.

There had to be someplace where matter came from, But I believe spirit comes before matter.

Item7


I gotta agree.
Energy instigated the first move; maybe at once, maybe in a series of events-
that it may be or seems to be without a source is the question. This is what defies
our carnal brains. From this stance I say matter descended from energy...Spirit.
What It (energy) is is the new proposition. Nothing or real? I think therefore I am? (Renee
Descartes) NOT!

I ain't no famous philosopher like he is but I humbly disagree.
I Am therefore I think. One cannot be unless one first is,
but then that's the part and parcel of G-d in me.

Spirit first (Humphreys argues this with a healthy skepticism; it really is so good
looking that it is hard to see.) - my subjective
experiences convince me Spirit is real; I need no argument for me, it has been made:
I am therefore I think.

The energy became and sparked the evolution of matter,
which eventually returns to energy.....you may have some.
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Postby frrostedman » Wed Dec 02, 2009 1:53 pm

humphreys wrote:If we reject Sproul's logic that coming from nothing makes us nothing, the question is easy to answer. I have empathy and respect for fellow human beings.

That is great that you do and I respect that. But in the end it just doesn't matter. Sproul didn't mean "I am nothing" in a literal sense. What he said was, if we came from nothing and are headed towarded nothing, our existence is reduced to complete meaninglessness. Nothing. And, he is absolutely correct. It's about purpose. Without a Creator, there is no purpose.
"But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about Jesus being a great teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to." C.S. Lewis
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Postby humphreys » Thu Dec 03, 2009 5:49 am

frrostedman wrote:
humphreys wrote:If we reject Sproul's logic that coming from nothing makes us nothing, the question is easy to answer. I have empathy and respect for fellow human beings.

That is great that you do and I respect that. But in the end it just doesn't matter. Sproul didn't mean "I am nothing" in a literal sense. What he said was, if we came from nothing and are headed towarded nothing, our existence is reduced to complete meaninglessness. Nothing. And, he is absolutely correct. It's about purpose. Without a Creator, there is no purpose.


So, you're saying we need a higher power to give our life purpose and meaning?

In that case, your God is meaningless, and nothing, as he has no higher power attributing purpose and meaning to his existence.

Essentially, your argument is flawed as you make "purpose" and "meaning" objective terms, when they do not have to be. We create our own purpose, and meaning.

Our position is really not very different. You accept that God instills a sense of purpose and meaning to his own existence, seeing as there is no higher power to do it for him, and I simply cut out God, and instill purpose and meaning to my own existence, without a higher power.

Either we're nothing, or your God is nothing, using Sproul's logic. And if your God is nothing, then, also using Sproul's logic, so must we be, as something that comes from nothing, is essentially nothing, in his eyes. You can't have it both ways.
"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."

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Postby event_horizon » Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:02 am

frrostedman wrote:I say to the humanist with all cynicism, if I come from nothing, if I’m going to nothing, I am nothing, and why should I care who sits on the front of the bus or on the back of the bus? What do I care if its white germs or black germs that have rights in this world?

- RC Sproul


The general consensus of believers is that "God" came from nothing. So going by Sprouls logic, if "God" came from nothing, then "God" is nothing.

Sproul kicked himself in the arse on that one. :lol:
I don't believe what I believe because it's what I desire to believe. I believe what I believe because it's what logic and reason cause me to believe. All I want is to live with the truth -- nothing more, nothing less.
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Postby Guest » Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:48 am

I don't believe that God came from nothing, but rather that God always was. I think that's how most "believers" think.

An ancient text, perhaps related to the Jewish Kalaba or the dead sea scrolls....{ I read it a long time ago } says that when God looked upon himself it/God created a reflection of himself and thus started creation. Almost like the division of a cell, but on a spiritual level. In that sense all of creation is a reflection of God. Even God is a reflection of God.

If there was anything before God...which I don't believe there was it would be null and void, which is different than nothing, because in order for nothing to exist, there must be something to contrast or compare it to. Nothing is the opposite of something, so nothing came after creation. I hope that makes sense.

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Postby frrostedman » Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:47 pm

humphreys wrote:
frrostedman wrote:That is great that you do and I respect that. But in the end it just doesn't matter. Sproul didn't mean "I am nothing" in a literal sense. What he said was, if we came from nothing and are headed towarded nothing, our existence is reduced to complete meaninglessness. Nothing. And, he is absolutely correct. It's about purpose. Without a Creator, there is no purpose.


So, you're saying we need a higher power to give our life purpose and meaning?

Yes, but we I am sure are talking in 2 different contexts. As usual. I'm talking about in the grand scheme... when it's "all over." What purpose will it have served that humphreys gave money to a beggar or volunteered at the community insane asylum? It will have meant nothing. In the present, yes, we can have 'purpose' in life without a Creator. You can do good and make other people, and yourself as the case may be, feel better. Without a Creator, purpose, and an afterlife... you doing a good deed for someone is akin to me gifting you $100,000 just before an atomic bomb wipes us out. What a great thing I did! But... who cares. We're dead.

In that case, your God is meaningless, and nothing, as he has no higher power attributing purpose and meaning to his existence.

It is said that God's creation, all of it, is what God chose in order to give Himself purpose. A single perfect being with nothing else around it, doesn't seem to have any purpose, I'll agree. You see vanity in that God created all this to glorify Himself. Whereas some of us are thankful for having been created in the first place and gladly give God the glory for it.

Essentially, your argument is flawed as you make "purpose" and "meaning" objective terms, when they do not have to be. We create our own purpose, and meaning.

Yes, that's what the humanists believe. The Christians on the other hand believe we exist to glorify (in a sense, 'give purpose and praise to') God.

Our position is really not very different. You accept that God instills a sense of purpose and meaning to his own existence, seeing as there is no higher power to do it for him, and I simply cut out God, and instill purpose and meaning to my own existence, without a higher power.

I disagree that it's not very different but yeah the rest pretty much sums it up.

Either we're nothing, or your God is nothing, using Sproul's logic.

In order to deduce that, you would have to insist that God "came from nothing," which Sproul does not believe, and that God is "headed toward nothing," which Sproul also does not believe.

And if your God is nothing, then, also using Sproul's logic, so must we be, as something that comes from nothing, is essentially nothing, in his eyes. You can't have it both ways.

God said He is the beginning and He is the end. In these enigmatic, seemingly contradictory words, I reckon God said, "I am infinity." Christians say God has always existed and thus did not come from nothing (see Item7's remarks as well). It is pretty much impossible for us to fathom something like that, but my conclusion on it is that time is not linear in God's realm. Such a thing isn't any more impossible than a massive explosion occurring without an outside force causing it, resulting in nothing expanding into an ordered universe.

Instead of thinking of God's existence as a straight line with a beginning and an end, we should instead think of it as a circle with no beginning and no end.
"But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about Jesus being a great teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to." C.S. Lewis
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Postby humphreys » Fri Dec 04, 2009 5:58 am

frrostedman wrote:Yes, but we I am sure are talking in 2 different contexts. As usual. I'm talking about in the grand scheme... when it's "all over." What purpose will it have served that humphreys gave money to a beggar or volunteered at the community insane asylum? It will have meant nothing. In the present, yes, we can have 'purpose' in life without a Creator. You can do good and make other people, and yourself as the case may be, feel better. Without a Creator, purpose, and an afterlife... you doing a good deed for someone is akin to me gifting you $100,000 just before an atomic bomb wipes us out. What a great thing I did! But... who cares. We're dead.


This makes no sense to me.

It makes no sense that making someone happy today means nothing if that person might cease to exist sometime in the future. He was happy at the time, and doing that deed made you feel good too, why does the distant future even enter into the equation? Makes no sense at all.

You like playing chess, right? Do you enjoy winning? Well, chess games end, and your victory at the game made no difference to the bigger scheme of things. Yet you enjoyed it. You enjoyed the game, and the win, and it made you feel good in the now.

Given your comments above, you really have no reason to play. The game is going to end. Playing it won't help get you into heaven, and yet you did it, and I know exactly why you did, and so do you, and yet you and people like Sproul still suggest that this stuff is meaningless if we cease to exist.

Chess has a purpose, regardless of the game ending, and regardless of an afterlife. It has a purpose because we gave it a purpose, just as we do in our own lives. Much of our lives we don't even remember, and yet they happened, and they affect the future. There will come a point in time when humans live forever, and everyone alive today will have contributed to that future in some small way.

frrostedman wrote:
In that case, your God is meaningless, and nothing, as he has no higher power attributing purpose and meaning to his existence.

It is said that God's creation, all of it, is what God chose in order to give Himself purpose. A single perfect being with nothing else around it, doesn't seem to have any purpose, I'll agree. You see vanity in that God created all this to glorify Himself. Whereas some of us are thankful for having been created in the first place and gladly give God the glory for it.


Great, so, we're agreed, that, like God, we can give our lives meaning and purpose.

If, say, in 1 billion years time, by some freak event, your God dies, does that mean he was meaningless after all? Of course not, because meaning is derived from the now, and cannot be taken away from death. The two are not connected in any way. If you have purpose and meaning, you have purpose and meaning, the fact that you die does not negate the fact that you did have purpose and meaning while you lived.

frrostedman wrote:
Essentially, your argument is flawed as you make "purpose" and "meaning" objective terms, when they do not have to be. We create our own purpose, and meaning.

Yes, that's what the humanists believe. The Christians on the other hand believe we exist to glorify (in a sense, 'give purpose and praise to') God.


Right, let's just not pretend the Christians have us over a barrel with their infallible logic proving that without God and eternal existence our lives have no meaning.

frrostedman wrote:
Either we're nothing, or your God is nothing, using Sproul's logic.

In order to deduce that, you would have to insist that God "came from nothing," which Sproul does not believe, and that God is "headed toward nothing," which Sproul also does not believe.


Well, God did not come from something, and the opposite of some thing, is no thing.

If you want to suggest he was always around, then maybe the Universe was too, or at least the materials that triggered the big bang. Does that really make any difference? No, because Sproul's argument itself is nonsense.

frrostedman wrote:Instead of thinking of God's existence as a straight line with a beginning and an end, we should instead think of it as a circle with no beginning and no end.


A lot of scientists see the Universe, and time, in the same way.

Very few scientists today assume that time really is linear, we just perceive it as such.
"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."

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Postby event_horizon » Fri Dec 04, 2009 10:52 am

Item7 wrote:I don't believe that God came from nothing, but rather that God always was. I think that's how most "believers" think.


Same difference. If "God always was" then obviously one must deduce that "God" didn't come from anything. Hence, "God" came from nothing.

Item7 wrote:An ancient text, perhaps related to the Jewish Kalaba or the dead sea scrolls....{ I read it a long time ago } says that when God looked upon himself it/God created a reflection of himself and thus started creation. Almost like the division of a cell, but on a spiritual level. In that sense all of creation is a reflection of God. Even God is a reflection of God.


Okay, so some ancient scientifically unsophisticated humanoid proclaims he has some sort of special connection with "God", scribbles something down, and we're supposed to be gullible and naive and believe it? Not to mention the idea sounds silly. In other words, "God" had never been awake/slept for eternity, then wakes up and happens to notice "His" little weewee and says "hey, lemmie take a sprinkle" and *boom*, creates the universe (sorry, the idea sounds so stupid I can't help myself). And it contradicts "His all-knowingness". "God" should have already known everything about itself without having to see a reflection of itself.

Item7 wrote:If there was anything before God...which I don't believe there was it would be null and void, which is different than nothing, because in order for nothing to exist, there must be something to contrast or compare it to. Nothing is the opposite of something, so nothing came after creation. I hope that makes sense.


Like I've always said, you can't get something from nothing. Something always existed, and that something I believe was a single form of energy that split into negative and positive energies, then merged back together and *boom*. Kinda like that "God reflection" story...only it makes sense. Obviously the egg had to come first, not the chicken. You're talking about an uncreated chicken laying an egg.
I don't believe what I believe because it's what I desire to believe. I believe what I believe because it's what logic and reason cause me to believe. All I want is to live with the truth -- nothing more, nothing less.
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