If you cease to exist after death, not much matters as you wouldn’yt know it anyway. Of course it’s a much different story if you do exist after death. Then ya kinda wish you’d done things differently. I think it’s probably better to go prepared.
Evidently, Mr. Russell's complaint was baseless.
In other words, he wanted belief in God to be a foregone conclusion and devoid of any element of faith. Russell was simply a man devoid of faith and, for that, he deserves our pity.
Eh, time will tell one way or another who is correct and who is not, It seems to me that an Atheist has to take in on faith that there is no God nor afterlife.
.... Russell replied with all the high-pitched fervor of his pedantry, why God had not made the evidence of his existence plainer and more irrefutable.
Part of the problem, I think, is that people see misery in the world and think G-d must not exist, else why would he allow it. These people fail to see that we are but pawns on a gigantic chessboard. G-d must take the longview required to win the game, even if it means sacrificing some of us pawns.
The Bible can be proven in one word - Israel.
I've always wondered how someone could come to the conclusion that God did not exist.
“...Bertrand Russell...was once asked what he would do if it proved that he was mistaken and if he met his maker in the hereafter. He would demand to know, Russell replied with all the high-pitched fervor of his pedantry, why God had not made the evidence of his existence plainer and more irrefutable.”
To which He, I hope, replies in a voice quite like Leo McKern’s, “That would be telling.”
Theodore Dalrymple (real name Dr. Anthony Daniels) is an amazingly prolific writer. This is the second piece of his I’ve read this week. And it seems I’ve read dozens of pieces by him this year.
Dalrymple is an outstanding wordsmith and a deep thinker. His work, and his biography, is respected by the other side. When he talks, it’s to the advantage of any truth-seeker to listen.
Odd that Jean Paul Sartre would come up in this discussion.
I once heard an interesting debate on the subject of a personal, versus an impersonal God. It began with the statement: “What good is a god that doesn’t kick your ass?”
The debate began with the description of God as a singularity, which automatically negates His description as “a god”, which implies more than one. A true singularity, God, cannot be compared with any thing or any condition, as there is only one of It. No size, shape, color, sound, etc. compares with anything. It also means that God cannot be a dichotomy, say God and the devil.
But within the singularity, even though everything is of the singularity, things can be compared to other things within the singularity. Therefore there can be “gods” within God, or angels, men, whatever, that while subordinate can be contrasted with each other.
God, the singularity, is so unique that It, or He, is hard to communicate with. Moses found this out when he asked God’s name, and God, rather philosophically, replied, “I AM THAT I AM”. Truly one of the most profound philosophical statements of all time. Trouble is, there is not a whole lot else God *can* say. God cannot describe God. The great Jewish philosopher, Martin Buber, made a magnificent short book about these personal pronoun dilemmas entitled “I and Thou”.
Kabbalists point this out as God’s reason for creating the universe in the first place. That is, God wanted to find out if there was anything that was “not God”. So first, He created a true vacuum, an “absence of God”, in which He could put the universe. Then with something like a lightning bolt, he created a single particle within that emptiness, whose purpose was to replicate itself, creating the universe, which would be like a gigantic mirror. And when the universe is “complete”, God will see His reflection, know His answer, and the universe will cease to exist.
In the meantime, how does mankind address God? God took care of this problem by making a series of “contracts” with various figures, such as Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Moses. Conveniently, these were done in the contractual format of the ancient world.
In short, God told mankind, and subsets thereof, of things to do and things not to do. If they obeyed they were to be rewarded, if disobeyed, punished. But it was always as a group, not individually.
In a manner of speaking, after Noah, God even put the rewards and punishments on “auto pilot”, in that if you did what you were told or didn’t the reward or punishment was integral to what you did.
Well, Jesus came along and threw out most of these contracts, and the extrapolated laws, statutes and judgments associated with them, and also created the concept of a personal deity.
The Mohammed came along with a last contractual agreement, making things terribly confusing.
This means that from the Jewish point of view, the original contracts, except Mohammed’s, still apply. Especially the Mosaic (Moses) law, that only applies to them. All other God believers only have to obey the Noachide (Noah) Law, which most people have never heard of, but is not particularly hard to conform to, anyway.
The Christians believe that Jesus is such a significant subset of God that He can alter reality and be a personal savior. And Muslims are only concerned with Mohammed’s contract, generally ignoring the others.
“So what good is Jesus if he doesn’t kick your ass?” This remains a problem with a personal deity, one that Christians accept, but remains a paradoxical problem.
My belief in God has more to do about living this life than worrying about death.
It is a shame that atheists think the whole thing is about the fear of death. It must be an obession with them.
is Dinesh D'Souza's What's So Great About Christianity
Am reading it now...Also was able to watch part of Dinesh's debate with Christopher Hitchens (was on Cspan 2) regarding the Atheist position that there is no God.
Could have listened to that for hours....
Dalrymple is always worth reading.
He doesn’t usually talk about himself, so I had not realized that he is an agnostic, but a sensible one who knows that he doesn’t know.
He understands the basic paradox—that without some sort of religious account, reasoning has no basis. You need something like the logos of the Greeks, or the Logos of Christianity. If your explanation of “everything” is purely materialist or evolutionary, then, as he says, you’d might as well quit thinking or worrying, because it’s all meaningless and arbitrary, including your thought processes.
Benito Mussolini used to do the same thing.
"However much philosophers tell us that it is illogical to fear death, and that at worst it is only the process of dying that we should fear, people still fear death as much as ever. In like fashion, however many times philosophers say that it is up to us ourselves, and to no one else, to find the meaning of life, we continue to long for a transcendent purpose immanent in existence itself, independent of our own wills."
The universal human dissatisfaction with mortality is forever reaching out for a connection to the eternal:
THE POLITICS OF PROCREATION!
In a secular sense, homosexuality is an idolatry of perversion. It is in no way an anatomical function of the human organism, but a phantasmagoric creation from within the mentally disturbed human mind, a social psychosis, naked and on full exhibitionist display.
Homosexual monogamy advocates seek ceremonious sanctification of their anatomical perversions and esoteric absolution for their guilt-ridden, impoverished egos.
Neither of those will satisfy their universal dissatisfaction with mortality or connect them to something eternal. With pantheons of fantasies as their medium of infinitization, they still have nothing in them of reality, any more than there is in the things that seem to stand before us in a dream.
Homosexual deviancy is really a pagan practice (and a self-induced social psychosis) at war with the Judaic culture over what is written in the book of Genesis (1:27, 2:18).
This is exactly what the National Socialists were at war with... so, when someone uses the term "Gaystapo," they might not realize how close to the truth they really are, especially if you consider the NAZI eugenic breeding programs.
Many will seek ceremonious sanctification and esoteric absolution in some type of marriage rite, but that still fails to give them a connection to the eternal in both a religious and temporal, procreant sense - - the union does not produce offspring.
Dissatisfaction with inevitable mortality only feeds the impoverishment of the ego further. Homosexuals really hate human life; their whole desire is rooted in the destruction of it.
Contemplate the religious fervor associated with the pro-abortion advocacy. The societal practice of abortion is ritual mass murder upon the altars of conceit dedicated to idolatrous vanities, a collective human sacrifice before pagan idols.
It has a similitude to the Teutonic paganism of Adolph Hitler (whose idolatry was the idea of a "master race," among other things). In effect, these genocides are a mass human sacrifice to those pagan idols. The abortionists, like the National Socialists, incinerate the remains of their victims.
Aleister Crowley, who openly supported the National Socialists, was affiliated with Ordo Templi Orientis, Golden Dawn, A.A. (Order of the Silver Star) and other such occult lodges all across Germany. Crowley engaged in all manner of deviancy, homoeroticism, sadomasochism and murder. Much of the occultism in National Socialism is derived directly from there.
Crowley envisioned himself as the Great Beast (Το Μεγα Θηριον ), just as der Fuhrer made himself in that image. Hitler's life as a struggling, inept artist was where that association blossomed.
Crowley's creed, "Do what thou wilt, shall be the whole of the Law," (which is actually from Francois Rabelais) and used by Neo-Pagan nutcases without attribution for obvious politically correct reasons, is with certainty no different than the National Socialist "will to power," or their ubermensch mentality.
It is also no accident Nietzsche's "over-man" and nihilist philosophy and resulting insanity from venereal disease closely mirrors the insanity of der Fuhrer. These occult orders, sex and drug cults still survive today, as do the Neo-pagan, Neo-Nazi groups, black supremacist Rastafarian potheads, prison gangs and other related filth.
PlatoÂs Euthyphro is a great illustration. Socrates advances the argument to Euthyphro that, piety to the gods, who all want conflicting devotions and/or actions from humans, is impossible. (Socrates exposed the pagan esoteric sophistry.)
Likewise, morals are such a construction of idols used by the Left as a rationale for them to demand compliance to their wishes in politics, which most often are a skewed mess of fallacies in logic. Morals are a deceptive replacement for the avoidance of sin.
Today, "morals" are a religious pagan philosophy of esoteric hobgoblins. Transfiguration is a pantheon of fantasies as the medium of infinitization. Others get derision for having an unwavering Judaic belief in Yahweh or Yeshua, although their critics and enemies will evangelize insertion of phantasmagoric fetishisms into secular law.
A greater number of "atheists" and "pagans" adopt the same hackneyed tenets of a faux Judaic-Christian ideal (golden calf). They also subscribe to the Judaic fetishism of "sin," but will fight to their death in denial of it. Most of them are so wrapped up in their own polemics that they have become nothing more than pathetic anti-Christians with the same false hypocritical philosophy. They just slap a new label on it hoping nobody will notice - - they replace the idea of "avoiding sin" with "morals."
Morality and all of its associated ideals are rooted entirely in the presupposition some higher power defines what is correct for human behavior.
But, since we are all properly obeying the * modern interpretation * of the First Amendment, good & evil isn't the question... Good & bad, right & wrong, etc., etc., ad nausea; are all inherently religious ideals.
The modern interpretation of the First Amendment (according to the liberal-tarians) says government must exorcise all traces of religion and theism from itself. Therefore, government must never consider issues of morality and right and wrong...
So, it becomes a question of benefits versus costs. Fetus killing has its benefits to society, especially if you like to sleep late on Saturdays. But it also has its costs as well. Society (by which I mean, whoever manages to seize power) needs to evaluate these costs and decide accordingly.
The mythical rights of men and women are also meaningless. The very concept of rights is also founded in religion. Since the enlightened person is freed from any superstitions about some "God," they are free from having to worry about "rights." Only raw power counts and humans are just meat puppets for the powerful...
>>>However much philosophers tell us that it is illogical to fear death, ....
Here’s where I think he pitches outside the strike zone. People don’t always just fear death. They fear the knowledge of the opportunity cost of what they could have gotten done, if they’d gotten their butts off of the couch. People fear dying with regrets.
A few years back, the National Gallery held an exhibition of Spanish still-life paintings. One of these paintings had a physical effect on the people who sauntered in, stopping them in their tracks; some even gasped. I have never seen an image have such an impact on people. The painting, by Juan Sánchez Cotán, now hangs in the San Diego Museum of Art. It showed four fruits and vegetables, two suspended by string, forming a parabola in a gray stone window.
Even if you did not know that Sánchez Cotán was a seventeenth-century Spanish priest, you could know that the painter was religious: for this picture is a visual testimony of gratitude for the beauty of those things that sustain us. Once you have seen it, and concentrated your attention on it, you will never take the existence of the humble cabbageor of anything elsequite so much for granted, but will see its beauty and be thankful for it. The painting is a permanent call to contemplation of the meaning of human life, and as such it arrested people who ordinarily were not, I suspect, much given to quiet contemplation.
The same holds true with the work of the great Dutch still-life painters. On the neo-atheist view, the religious connection between Catholic Spain and Protestant Holland is one of conflict, war, and massacre only: and certainly one cannot deny this history. And yet something more exists. As with Sánchez Cotán, only a deep reverence, an ability not to take existence for granted, could turn a representation of a herring on a pewter plate into an object of transcendent beauty, worthy of serious reflection.