If God created us...

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Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 01:37 pm
@xris,
xris;102655 wrote:
So your saying the accepted description of god is a schizophrenic fool? Could you tell me if this is just your opinion or the claimed opinion of the faiths.


How you interpreted what I stated to mean that, I haven't a clue :perplexed:

Perhaps, instead, you could address my point:

Isn't the definition of omnipotent, all-powerful? That is, God can do everything? If he can do everything, why can he not do mistakes?
 
Aedes
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 02:54 pm
@xris,
xris;102651 wrote:
If he requires us to try and maintain his laws then he has expectations.
Where does it say his expectations are of "perfection"? How many ways can I ask this question of you before you directly answer me?

xris;102651 wrote:
If he knew we would fail because of our imperfections, then the exercise is pointless.
Only if his standard is "perfection". But the fact remains that in the Jewish and Christian traditions his expectation is NOT "perfection", but rather faith, obedience (esp in law-heavy Judaism), and repentance. We're expected to not be "perfect" -- but we're at the same time expected to strive for it and repent our failure. And repentance of this failure is specifically rewarded by God.

xris;102651 wrote:
What in your opinion is failure and what is success?
If I'm supposed to not combine milk and meat, which is a Talmudic law in my religious background, but I go and have a cheeseburger, then that is a failure to follow an expectation. Whoops. I recognize this transgression. I pray for forgiveness of this transgression, and of that time I had covetous or violent thoughts, and of that time I questioned my faith. And I ask God to forgive me. Those are failures that become successes in the faithful, penitent person.

xris;102651 wrote:
How can you judge anything that is not perfect?
There are many ways of being imperfect. To be a mass murderer is a different kind of imperfect than to be a glutton.

xris;102651 wrote:
To point to an individual that may have caused millions to die by his failings, do you blame him for his imperfections or the god who claims his creation.
First off, this is a conundrum in the Western model of God. Technically speaking, if God is omnipotent and omniscient, then I don't think it's logical for God's wants to be different than reality. Absolute power over everything means that what you want is, and what you don't want is not.

This is rationalized by free will, but free will is an abdication by God of power over our decisions. I can kill this ant by stamping my foot, but because I don't stamp my foot the ant has free will. Thus, the ant acts under its own will.

Theological explanations for this are plentiful, with the most interesting being the Kaballah (Jewish mysticism), in which God recedes from the earth with his creative efforts, he becomes distant, and evil is created by the incapacity of the world to contain his power (they speak of vessels that shatter under his creative efforts, and the shards create evil).

xris;102651 wrote:
Your mind set is strangely earth bound in its logic of this god the creator. Why do you think he made us imperfect?
My mindset is strangely earthbound because I'm an earthling. Who am I, a casual Jew with an atheistic tendency, to think that I can understand the reasons why God would have created us in the way held by my tradition? I don't know. Maybe a giant experiment. Maybe to nurture us, while rewarding those who choose good and punish those who do not.

Sometimes you just plant some seeds and see what happens -- not everything is cut and snipped and tied and staked like a bansai tree.

xris;102651 wrote:
This is the logic of all described gods, not just your selected biblical examples.
We happen to be conversing in the "Christianity" subsection of the "Abrahamic Religions" forum. If you'd like to talk about Baal or Viracocha or Ọsun or Jupiter, then we're waaay out of the mold of abrahamic theology and the "logic" will certainly differ.

By the way, I haven't offered any "selected" biblical example here, so what exactly are you referring to?
 
xris
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 03:17 pm
@Aedes,
Reasoning why it is not made clear in scriptures, your acceptance of the gaps in your understanding and then remark as if it was a reasonable response, not so.

Your god makes demands and if you fail, you fail your god, if you choose not to ask for forgiveness and continue to disobey god, what is your reception? You fail to understand the logic of not believing. Why make us imperfect ? is the first question. Why make us at all? is the next. Why make rules that an imperfect creation can not abide by? is another. You conform because it is your will not because of your imperfection.

You just dont see the logic of this claim of creation , do you? If you could create perfection why make it less than so? No excuses such as its a secret or some such nonsense.

---------- Post added 11-09-2009 at 04:23 PM ----------

Zetherin;102657 wrote:
How you interpreted what I stated to mean that, I haven't a clue :perplexed:

Perhaps, instead, you could address my point:

Isn't the definition of omnipotent, all-powerful? That is, God can do everything? If he can do everything, why can he not do mistakes?
so if he can and does , does that describe god. He lies and makes laws that say you must not lie, he creates but destroys, he destroys himself, he is not omniscient, he is...If you say he does then describe him in that manner, because i cant. I dont claim his existance, only question his description.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 03:59 pm
@Yogi DMT,
xris wrote:
so if he can and does , does that describe god. He lies and makes laws that say you must not lie, he creates but destroys, he destroys himself, he is not omniscient, he is...If you say he does then describe him in that manner, because i cant. I dont claim his existance, only question his description.


You must understand that I'm also questioning his (its) description. That's the basis for everything I've been typing.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 06:00 pm
@xris,
xris;102669 wrote:
Reasoning why it is not made clear in scriptures, your acceptance of the gaps in your understanding and then remark as if it was a reasonable response, not so.

Your god makes demands and if you fail, you fail your god, if you choose not to ask for forgiveness and continue to disobey god, what is your reception? You fail to understand the logic of not believing. Why make us imperfect ? is the first question. Why make us at all? is the next. Why make rules that an imperfect creation can not abide by? is another. You conform because it is your will not because of your imperfection.

You just dont see the logic of this claim of creation , do you? If you could create perfection why make it less than so? No excuses such as its a secret or some such nonsense.
Again -- where exactly does it say that God expects perfection?[/COLOR] Not following rules, not obeying, but perfection. Why can't you answer this?
 
prothero
 
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2009 11:43 pm
@xris,
xris;102669 wrote:
You just dont see the logic of this claim of creation , do you? If you could create perfection why make it less than so? No excuses such as its a secret or some such nonsense./
Maybe perfection is not possible in a "real" world?
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 04:41 am
@Aedes,
Aedes;102684 wrote:
Again -- where exactly does it say that God expects perfection?[/COLOR] Not following rules, not obeying, but perfection. Why can't you answer this?
It does not say we require perfection but what else is god expecting, if he desires we perform to his standards? The point of scriptures is to demand we obey and if we don't scriptures tell us of the consequences. If there were no consequences then gods imperfect creation is accepted, as such. Following rules, requires perfection. Would a perfect creation fail in gods demands? You don't design an imperfect coffee maker and then blame it because it does not work correctly. Face it your god is not logical.

---------- Post added 11-10-2009 at 05:48 AM ----------

prothero;102721 wrote:
Maybe perfection is not possible in a "real" world?
Perfection is the claim of the faithful. If you make certain rules to abide by you expect perfection. We as humans know we are imperfect so we make allowances in our judgement. As god is our creator he is responsible for our imperfection therefor is held responsible for our errors. Its his fault not ours that we don't act in a perfect manner. Why did he make us imperfect and then require us to act differently.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 08:14 am
@xris,
xris;102749 wrote:
It does not say we require perfection but what else is god expecting
In other words, God expects something of us, but there is no evidence that he expects perfection. Thank you. I agree.

xris;102749 wrote:
he desires we perform to his standards...
He desires we perform to certain standards. We are not meant to be his equal. We are not meant to create worlds. We are not meant to judge souls. But we are meant to not murder each other.

xris;102749 wrote:
The point of scriptures is to demand we obey and if we don't scriptures tell us of the consequences.
Funny then that neither the Old nor the New Testament tell us the consequences of disobedience, except maybe Lot's wife turning into a pillar of salt and some other anecdotes. And obedience is only really emphasized in the Torah, i.e. the five books of Moses, and in a couple other places (like Job). Most of the Old Testament, and particularly the part after the books of Moses (like the prophets and the writings) are simply historical narrative. The emphasis on obedience, heaven, and hell is largely extrascriptural (and derived from Virgil more than from scripture).

xris;102749 wrote:
If there were no consequences then gods imperfect creation is accepted, as such.
Why then doesn't Judaism, a religion that is FAR more emphatic about obedience than Christianity, have a heaven or hell?

xris;102749 wrote:
Would a perfect creation fail in gods demands?
Only if God chose not to control all human decisions.
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 08:51 am
@Aedes,
I don't think this is going anywhere, you see god as a creator of imperfection that has no real intention of judging his creation. I see a vengeful god who throughout scripture demands we act in accordance to his laws and if we dont we may expect his anger. There is more in the bible than the punishment of Ruth. A certain prophets bears ate a few cheeky kids for actually taking the mick out of him. The Egyptians did not exactly have a good time, suffering from his intentions. The bible is littered with this vengeful gods wrath.

The revelations, a christian warning to all those who oppose god is laws or ignore his advice.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 09:38 am
@xris,
xris;102785 wrote:
you see god as a creator of imperfection that has no real intention of judging his creation
I say nothing of the sort on either point.

1. That humans are imperfect is universally understood in Judaism and Christianity.

2. It is generally felt that human imperfection is our own doing and not a specific consequence of God's agency

3. The degree to which God judges, rewards, and condemns is highly variable in this group of religions. How can you compare Unitarianism with Calvinism? How can you compare Reform Judaism with Roman Catholocism?

There is no uniform dogma, and part of the reason is that the ideas of imperfection, judgement, and consequence do NOT come directly from scripture!!

xris;102785 wrote:
I see a vengeful god who throughout scripture demands we act in accordance to his laws and if we dont we may expect his anger.
And yet all you're doing is citing anecdotes and not general principles or dictates. With good reason -- scripture lacks general principles or dictates on much of this subject, so the religious metaphysics of human imperfection and sin and punishment is a derivation. It comes from theology and tradition, not from scripture!

xris;102785 wrote:
The revelations, a christian warning to all those who oppose god is laws or ignore his advice.
And that was one book at the end of one gospel written by one author, and if I'm not mistaken it is the single latest piece of writing to be included in the Christian Bible -- so it cannot be seen as representing the views of the many authors of the Old Testament and the remainder of the New Testament that had been put together over the previous 1200+ years. Secondly, Revelations is a work of apocalyptic literature -- it's not about disobedience. Thirdly, whatever you or I might say about Revelations, it is the single most controversial piece of the entire Christian Bible and there is no interpretation of it that is universally accepted as true.

xris;102785 wrote:
I don't think this is going anywhere
That is because you're making unfounded, sweeping statements about something you haven't researched in the slightest, yet you just dig in your heels rather than try to have a conversation.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 09:41 am
@Yogi DMT,
Aedes wrote:
With good reason -- scripture lacks general principles or dictates on much of this subject, so the religious metaphysics of human imperfection and sin and punishment is a derivation. It comes from theology and tradition, not from scripture!

Perfetto, signore!
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 10:02 am
@Aedes,
Aedes;102797 wrote:
I say nothing of the sort on either point.

1. That humans are imperfect is universally understood in Judaism and Christianity.

2. It is generally felt that human imperfection is our own doing and not a specific consequence of God's agency

3. The degree to which God judges, rewards, and condemns is highly variable in this group of religions. How can you compare Unitarianism with Calvinism? How can you compare Reform Judaism with Roman Catholocism?

There is no uniform dogma, and part of the reason is that the ideas of imperfection, judgement, and consequence do NOT come directly from scripture!!

And yet all you're doing is citing anecdotes and not general principles or dictates. With good reason -- scripture lacks general principles or dictates on much of this subject, so the religious metaphysics of human imperfection and sin and punishment is a derivation. It comes from theology and tradition, not from scripture!

And that was one book at the end of one gospel written by one author, and if I'm not mistaken it is the single latest piece of writing to be included in the Christian Bible -- so it cannot be seen as representing the views of the many authors of the Old Testament and the remainder of the New Testament that had been put together over the previous 1200+ years. Secondly, Revelations is a work of apocalyptic literature -- it's not about disobedience. Thirdly, whatever you or I might say about Revelations, it is the single most controversial piece of the entire Christian Bible and there is no interpretation of it that is universally accepted as true.

That is because you're making unfounded, sweeping statements about something you haven't researched in the slightest, yet you just dig in your heels rather than try to have a conversation.
So we get back to the pick and mix scriptures the believer loves to use. Exclude anything that opposes your view but accept those that helps you make a debate more prolonged than it aught. Sweeping statements, what sweeping statements, the references you ignore or class as invalid? Scriptures are scriptures, what would you prefer me to remark on instead of scripture. The gospels according to Aedes and his notes on the dismissal of large sections thereof. Ruth to be included but not Elijah's,s bears.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 10:18 am
@xris,
xris;102805 wrote:
So we get back to the pick and mix scriptures the believer loves to use. Exclude anything that opposes your view but accept those that helps you make a debate more prolonged than it aught.
First of all, I'm not a believer.

Secondly, religions themselves pick and mix scriptures. You think that Jews and Christians interpret Ezekiel and Isaiah the same way? They don't even interpret Genesis 1:2 the same way.

I'm not excluding anything except for blind generalizations, which you've been known to make in the past. All scripture is open to discussion -- but don't tell me about the story of Lot's wife or of Noah and then tell me that therefore God does this or that to all the disobedients.

xris;102805 wrote:
Sweeping statements, what sweeping statements, the references you ignore or class as invalid?
You say "God expects perfection". That is a sweeping statement. It's also both wrong and unfounded. You say "I see a vengeful god who throughout scripture demands we act in accordance to his laws and if we dont we may expect his anger." That IS a valid interpretation if you're Cotton Mather. That is NOT a valid interpretation if you're Desmond Tutu. Why the difference? Because scripture does not provide a clear answer as to what God generally wants, what he specifically wants, or what he'll do about it.

xris;102805 wrote:
Scriptures are scriptures, what would you prefer me to remark on instead of scripture. The gospels according to Aedes and his notes on the dismissal of large sections thereof. Ruth to be included but not Elijah's,s bears.
I'm not dismissing them at all. I'm only dismissing your penchant for taking small snipets and quotes and generalizing from them as if they are representative of the whole. Different day different flavor.
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 12:46 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;102806 wrote:
First of all, I'm not a believer.

Secondly, religions themselves pick and mix scriptures. You think that Jews and Christians interpret Ezekiel and Isaiah the same way? They don't even interpret Genesis 1:2 the same way.

I'm not excluding anything except for blind generalizations, which you've been known to make in the past. All scripture is open to discussion -- but don't tell me about the story of Lot's wife or of Noah and then tell me that therefore God does this or that to all the disobedients.

You say "God expects perfection". That is a sweeping statement. It's also both wrong and unfounded. You say "I see a vengeful god who throughout scripture demands we act in accordance to his laws and if we dont we may expect his anger." That IS a valid interpretation if you're Cotton Mather. That is NOT a valid interpretation if you're Desmond Tutu. Why the difference? Because scripture does not provide a clear answer as to what God generally wants, what he specifically wants, or what he'll do about it.

I'm not dismissing them at all. I'm only dismissing your penchant for taking small snipets and quotes and generalizing from them as if they are representative of the whole. Different day different flavor.
Your posts are becoming more and more rhetoric and dismissal of valid arguments. Small snippets of mine are invalid but yours are? oh how superior you have become. Most of your posts tell me of your attention to your faith and then you inform me your not a believer. Do you perform out of fear or to acknowledge your doubts. If you doubt yourself dont insist my certainty is without investigation. God of scriptures, demands and refusal is judged by him and his entourage of angels. You dont judge your own creation when you imposed the failures by imperfection.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 01:09 pm
@Yogi DMT,
I haven't offered you small snippets. I've simply pointed out that your chosen anecdotes don't justify your thesis.

xris wrote:
God of scriptures, demands and refusal is judged by him and his entourage of angels.
Based on what generalizable statement? And why is it that this is not universally believed?

And I'm not a believer. I practice Judaism out of respect for my grandparents and parents, because of the togetherness that comes with family events, and to commemorate the fact that most of my family died because they were Jews in the wrong place at the wrong time. This is an authentic practice on my part. It has symbolic importance to me, even though I don't believe the stories or the theology literally.
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 01:31 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;102840 wrote:
I haven't offered you small snippets. I've simply pointed out that your chosen anecdotes don't justify your thesis.

Based on what generalizable statement? And why is it that this is not universally believed?

And I'm not a believer. I practice Judaism out of respect for my grandparents and parents, because of the togetherness that comes with family events, and to commemorate the fact that most of my family died because they were Jews in the wrong place at the wrong time. This is an authentic practice on my part. It has symbolic importance to me, even though I don't believe the stories or the theology literally.
I can understand the ritual of your faith and the respect it shows your loved ones but you should never, ever use it as a reason to justify your argument. I have conformed for many years, for social benefit and i do know the fear that religion instills into its followers. Don't convince me that scriptures dont request perfection, convince the hierarchy of those bigoted faiths. I have no dispute with Judaism , it always appeared a secluded faith that never imposes itself on others, or caused suffering through its dogma.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 02:44 pm
@xris,
xris;102848 wrote:
I can understand the ritual of your faith and the respect it shows your loved ones but you should never, ever use it as a reason to justify your argument.
I don't. It's only because you keep using the word "your" and the phrase "your God" in reference to my argument that I respond.

If you had even the slightest respect for me as an interlocutor with you in this conversation, then you'd do me the favor of reading my posts at a level commensurate with your intelligence. I say again and again, in this thread and others, that there is such tremendous diversity in religious practice and scriptural interpretation that broad generalizations are doomed from the start.

How is this possibly an example of someone using one's own beliefs to justify an argument? It's the exact opposite. I'm openminded -- my whole argument is that you shouldn't be basing a thesis on one of many common interpretations. My personal interpretation is basically anthropologic / historiographic, but that doesn't inform an argument about metaphysics.

xris;102848 wrote:
Don't convince me that scriptures dont request perfection
As soon as you show me an unambiguous scriptural quote in which "perfection" is requested by God, I'll lay off this argument. Until then, you may as well be telling me that God created unicorns.
 
xris
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 03:04 pm
@Aedes,
You dont get it, what is imperfection what is perfection? Any desire to compel , desire, to obey, conform is a requisite of perfection. The mere act of a creator, who knows his creation is imperfect, who then gives guidance or give laws is the act of a nutter. You dont create an imperfect creature and make requests you know are not built in to its being by the nature you instilled in it. I'm sorry but I dont know if its my lack of skill in informing you or your unwillingness to understand. It covers all the faiths you might select , its relative to them all.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2009 08:17 pm
@xris,
xris;102863 wrote:
You dont get it, what is imperfection what is perfection?
You are the one who said that "God requires perfection". If by "perfection" you mean something other than perfection, then perhaps we need to choose a different word or concept.

xris;102863 wrote:
You dont create an imperfect creature and make requests you know are not built in to its being.
This I agree with -- and it's why perhaps the single greatest philosophical conundrum of Western monotheism is how to account for evil. Different traditions have different rationalizations of it. They're all flawed, but then again so is any God proof and the hypotheses that there is no god (or that god is amoral) remain explanations for why there is evil.

I'm sorry if you think I've overemphasized the 'perfection' issue, but since perfection is not specifically part of doctrine and there is recourse for sinners (through repentance), I have to maintain that perfection per se is not what is required by God.


If you've ever read Dante's Divine Comedy, it's in the very last three lines of the Paradiso that Dante finally achieves perfection, in the moment when he experiences the beatific vision and directly beholds God. You can understand a lot of Dante if you read the Aeneid by Virgil and understand some of Aquinas' theology.

Dante experiences the beatific vision much as Aquinas describes, he writes:

"but now my desire and will, like a wheel that spins with even motion, were revolved by the Love that moves the sun and the other stars."

(John D. Sinclair translation of:
ma gia volgeva il mio disio e 'lvelle,
si come rota ch' igualmente e mossa,
l'amor che move il sole e l'altre stelle
)

The relevance here is that in Dante's view, in a journey that takes him from earth to perdition to limbo to hell to purgatory to Eden and then up through the planets in paradise, it is only in paradise at the moment of beholding God that he is synchronous, that his desire and will are unified in that vision, i.e. he is finally perfect.

Aquinas wrote, regarding the beatific vision, one will "enjoy the same happiness wherewith God is happy, seeing Him in the way which He sees Himself" in the next life.

So it seems to me that in these two nondoctrinal but important members of Christian intellectual history, the dominant view is that humans cannot be synchronous with God until we are in Paradise. THAT is where we become perfect. Life is the trial.
 
klatu phil
 
Reply Tue 5 Jan, 2010 01:28 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Yogi DMT;101937 wrote:
1) Why would he plague us with the ability to think outsides the confines of the religion's teaching? 2) Why would he infect humans with the anti-religious idea of free will? 3) Why would god give humans the ability to disagree with his religion? 4) Why would god create humans so that they may create conflicting or different religious beliefs other than Christianity? 5) Why would god ever want to condemn his own children or to add, give us the ability to do such that he would condemn us for? 6) Why would god create humans with the reason to prove religion irrational in many areas? 7) Why would god ever make humans susceptible to the dangers of having a train of thought other than a strictly religious one?

Lets start with one: First is the probably false presumption that any existing teaching is from God. That human aspirations to a greater good yet to be realized via religious tradition or natural reason only sets the stage for the 'final God event'. Two: Free will is slippery concept. I would suggest that we do not have free will in any true moral sense. It is for that reason that war, injustice, environmental degradation and all the rest continue. In that sense we don't have either the free will or knowledge to be a sustainable species, the ultimate measure of a moral conception. three: back to the assumption that HIS religion exists? I would suggest that what does in fact exist is no more than a theological counterfeit, the ultimate intellectual vanity, humanities greatest own goal. Four:That 'spiritual' chaos only reflects the absence of an ultimate defining reality. We have only our illusions. five: While any 'judgment' is as yet not fully understood, to live within the current limitations of our natural condition is its own condemnation. If God intends, at some point, to save us from ourselves, and we decline the invitation, we condemn ourselves. six: because religion as it exists is irrational, and yet for religion to exist as it does must also mean that there exists within human nature an irrational component. Call it perfect ignorance it you like. seven: That is a result of the 'fall', a condition in which we still exist within that perfect ignorance.
 
 

 
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