chongjasmine

Do you believe in God?

155 posts in this topic

3 hours ago, Scarletfox said:

I am an evangelical Christian, I believe the God of the New (and Old) Testament - centered around salvation through faith alone.

(and I sometimes cover my safehand, because I'm a nerd)

sometimes? I had to stalk you online to find pictures of your safehand...

 

 

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1 minute ago, Chasmgoat said:

sometimes? I had to stalk you online to find pictures of your safehand...

Hey, I take pride in the fact that only two sharders have ever seen my safehand! (You being one of those two people) And the other one was just an accident.

I have gone to great lengths, Chasmgoat, great lengths. 

Spoiler

Now to those of you who may be concerned that I am being stalked on the internet, it is a long story - Chasmgoat is not actually stalking me. :)

 

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I am an Agnostic leaning more toward Atheism. My father is Catholic and my mother is Atheist. I know quite a bit about the Catholic religion.

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I'm also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I believe that Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are distinct beings yet united in purpose. I believe that God loves each of His children, knows us individually, and has a plan for us. I believe that we have a living prophet on earth today who God speaks through and gives us guidance and direction.

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Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Patter Day Saints. I believe in the importance of grace, but also believe as James said that faith without works is dead. It is awesome to see the religious diversity here on the Shard. 

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I grew up as an evangelical Christian, and possibly paralleling the experience of some agnostics and atheists, was bored and somewhat depressed by church services that seemed to be devoid of joy and that seemed, at least to me as a kid, like a pageant of extreme artifice, with the wooden multitudes going through prescribed motions without feeling, seemingly as an attempt to hedge their afterlife bets and avoid the "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" end. 

In college I went from a smug self-satisfied atheism to a more uncertain and qualified agnosticism. 

But when I found the love of my life, and tried to really come to terms with some of the deeper issues that I had always struggled with, I found then the loving hand of God extended.

The world is suffused in beauty, love is the motive force that drives the human soul to its most exalted heights, and the example of the Love, Compassion and Redemption of Christ are a continual inspiration to me. 

I'm a Christian, I believe in the triune God, God the father (reason), Jesus the son (love) and the Holy Spirit (justice and beauty). 

I realize now that my earlier views of the people at my old church were ungracious in the extreme, everyone approaches their faith in a different manner, and anyone who seeks truly is deserving of respect. 

Many are the ways attention is diverted, few are the moments when the mundane concerns of life can truly be put aside. I try in my life to find at least one moment a day where I can thank God for the beauty of his creation,  for his gift and example of unconditional love and for the capacity to do the same in my life. 

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29 minutes ago, IAmTheStick said:

I... guess I'm agnostic?

A good way of thinking about it is that agnosticism deals with knowledge and theism and atheism deal with belief. 

Maybe belief plays little to no role for you, so agnostic would be your best descriptor. If knowledge and belief are equally (more or less) important, you can combine terms: agnostic atheist  or agnostic theist.

What's the opposite of agnostic? There really isn't one in popular usage. It depends on what you identify as your epistemological structure. I would label myself a Kantian atheist, which tells a lot of people almost nothing *shrugs*. Another adjective could be "empirical", as well as "rational" or "ideal".

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6 hours ago, Orlionra said:

A good way of thinking about it is that agnosticism deals with knowledge and theism and atheism deal with belief. 

Maybe belief plays little to no role for you, so agnostic would be your best descriptor. If knowledge and belief are equally (more or less) important, you can combine terms: agnostic atheist  or agnostic theist.

What's the opposite of agnostic? There really isn't one in popular usage. It depends on what you identify as your epistemological structure. I would label myself a Kantian atheist, which tells a lot of people almost nothing *shrugs*. Another adjective could be "empirical", as well as "rational" or "ideal".

Interesting. It's good to have someone clear that up for me, so thanks! I realized I should probably clarify further... I was raised LDS, but it wasn't right for me. I'm kind of in an in-between right now, but I don't think I'll be religious again.  Agnostic atheist as you said seems to be right for me.

I was reading a couple other posts and I do believe in all the love thy neighbor type of stuff. Don't have to be religious to be a good person, no matter what some would say xD

Edited by IAmTheStick
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28 minutes ago, IAmTheStick said:

Interesting. It's good to have someone clear that up for me, so thanks! I realized I should probably clarify further... I was raised LDS, but it wasn't right for me. I'm kind of in an in-between right now, but I don't think I'll be religious again.  Agnostic atheist as you said seems to be right for me.

I was reading a couple other posts and I do believe in all the love thy neighbor type of stuff. Don't have to be religious to be a good person, no matter what some would say xD

Samesies! Or, rather, I was also raised LDS and came to the conclusion that I would likely not be religious again.

And you are correct. Moral actions are what make a person good, not their accepted spirituality (or lack thereof).

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I wasn’t raised religious so when I was a kid I didn’t understand what people were talking about when they did mention anything faith related. It wasn’t until my family moved to Texas, about 10, that the stuff ramped up and I seriously went into ‘what the hell are they talking about?’ since I still wasn’t aware of religion as a concept. I knew of churches of course but only knew of them as places people got married at so I only knew them as marriage buildings.

 

As I got into my teen years I was getting more aware of it, mostly just Christianity, and it was just annoying me so much because I didn’t believe or follow that way of life (had a classmate who assumed because I wasn’t a self proclaimed Christian that I HAD to be atheist which I quickly objected to). Even going into adulthood I didn’t like hearing anything Christian related, I have personal bully related reasons I don’t want to get into here, but I liked reading about the Eastern faiths like Hinduism, Buddhism and Shinto. Even visited a local Buddhist temple and I liked it more than a church.

Nowadays I would just call myself non-religious as a rule since I don’t believe in any specific god or follow any doctrine but if I had to pick any I’d choose one of the Eastern ones. Heck I’m more into the Olympians, Egyptians, Norse and various others than the OG/Allah/what have yous of Western faiths.

So yeah, I’m complicated where all this is concerned.

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On 3/25/2021 at 8:23 AM, Draginon said:

Nowadays I would just call myself non-religious as a rule since I don’t believe in any specific god or follow any doctrine but if I had to pick any I’d choose one of the Eastern ones. Heck I’m more into the Olympians, Egyptians, Norse and various others than the OG/Allah/what have yous of Western faiths.

Purely out of curiosity, is Islam really categorized as a 'Western' religion? I was gonna quibble that Christianity was technically founded in the Middle East, but that's a pointless assertion if even Islam is 'Western.'

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51 minutes ago, BreezeCauthon said:

Purely out of curiosity, is Islam really categorized as a 'Western' religion? I was gonna quibble that Christianity was technically founded in the Middle East, but that's a pointless assertion if even Islam is 'Western.'

I have never seen it categorized as "Western".

Of course, that is a fairly broad category. Sometimes it refers to Roman influences (which Christianity has its origins within the Roman Empire and Islam does not) other times, it goes for a more European influence (a lot of Christianity that exists today, particularly Catholicism and Protestantism falls in this category. The Eastern Orthodox tradition would not, and I have seen some practitioners of this form claim they are not "western" as a result).

 

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My dad's side of the family is LDS, my mom's side is Catholic, my wife is Lutheran, but I've always identified with the following quote:

Quote

The opposite of the religious fanatic is not the fanatical atheist but the gentle cynic who cares not whether there is a god or not.

I joke that, "I'm an atheist, but I'm not an asshole about it."

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On 3/28/2021 at 7:47 AM, BreezeCauthon said:

Purely out of curiosity, is Islam really categorized as a 'Western' religion? I was gonna quibble that Christianity was technically founded in the Middle East, but that's a pointless assertion if even Islam is 'Western.'

The Middle East is in that weird middle ground when it comes to East and West. If we went by the Europe definition that includes Turkey, Cyprus and the Caucuses. If we use the Eurozone defined by the EBU that includes a vast majority of the Middle East which is an overlap for the religion side.

If we defined the Middle East as being Asia/East then it’s Eastern.

I guess it all depends on where you choose to place the Middle East in terms of West vs East. Of course if we include the wider Muslim world you have to consider Africa and determine if they are considered West, East or their own thing. The only part of the Muslim world I would definitely call Eastern though is the Indonesian branch of it.

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On 1/21/2021 at 8:23 PM, Nathrangking said:

I'm a religious jew. The god of the old testament is the deity that I believe in.

same, well kinda lol
-high fives-
I believe in the God of the old and new testament (though I have separating the bible)

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On 3/15/2021 at 0:45 PM, Mage said:

Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Patter Day Saints. I believe in the importance of grace, but also believe as James said that faith without works is dead. It is awesome to see the religious diversity here on the Shard. 

-high fives-

faith without work is dead

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I'm a religious Jew, I believe in the God of the Old Testament, as you call it. I'm open to questions about Judaism - I had some discussions with @Ixthos in a PM about our religions.

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21 minutes ago, Trutharchivist said:

I'm a religious Jew, I believe in the God of the Old Testament, as you call it. I'm open to questions about Judaism - I had some discussions with @Ixthos in a PM about our religions.

Those were some good conversations too :D

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I am not religious, in the sense that I attend no services, perform no rituals, and claim membership in no denomination.  As a U.S. citizen, I find Christianity troubling; I fear that too few self-professed American "Christians" practice (or even know) the things Christ actually taught.

That said, I'm not an atheist.  As others have said, certain knowledge of the infinite is beyond our finite brains.  I'm agnostic in the literal sense - I can't say "yes" or "no", it's simply unknowable.

I have found recently that spirituality does not require religion.  If I choose to believe that there IS a higher power who wants the best for all of us, I feel differently and act differently.  Prayer, to me, is not about telling god what's up - an all-knowing god, if there is one, already knows.  Rather, prayer is a way to remind ME what I should be doing: gratitude for what I have, thinking less about myself, and helping others more.

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I am a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. and btw, secretly a member of the church of the survivor......

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I'm also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

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I am a Christian, which has become a rather unspecific categorization, so I'll elaborate. My beliefs about God are explained well by the Nicene creed:

Spoiler

We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible;

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages, Light of Light, True God of True God, Begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father, by whom all things were made:

Who for us men and our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and was made man;

And he was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and was buried;

And the third day he rose again, according to the Scriptures;

And ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father;

And he shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead, whose kingdom shall have no end.

And we believe in the Holy Spirit, the Giver of Life, Who proceeds from the Father [and the Son], Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spoke by the Prophets;

And we believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins. We look for the Resurrection of the dead, and the Life of the age to come. Amen.

Which basically says that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are three in one, and equal to each other.

I believe that the Bible, meaning the old and new Testament, is the only inspired word of God, and that it is literal except when it is clear that it is not. (Meaning the creation account is a literal retelling of events that actually happened, but Jesus' parables are not)

I believe that everyone is a sinner deserving of eternal damnation, and that the only way to salvation is through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.

So yeah, those are my basic beliefs.

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On 12/28/2021 at 11:17 AM, AquaRegia said:

As a U.S. citizen, I find Christianity troubling; I fear that too few self-professed American "Christians" practice (or even know) the things Christ actually taught.

You raise a good point. The key in that sentence is "self-professed." One can be a "self-professed"  Christian without being a true Christian. True Christians follow the teachings of Christ. It's that simple.

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1 hour ago, AonDoor said:

You raise a good point. The key in that sentence is "self-professed." One can be a "self-professed"  Christian without being a true Christian. True Christians follow the teachings of Christ. It's that simple.

The issue I find with such statements is that it's fairly close to a "no true Scotsman fallacy."

Which is there because of another fallacy: the idea that being Christian means you are morally good. 

And that is simply not the case. In observation or theologically.  I feel, in fact, there is plenty of Christian theological arguments that would argue that humanity is, baseline, an immoral, fallen race of damned souls that are only elevated from their decrepit state by the actions, choice and grace of Christ.

Which, granted, was an unnecessary (but fun! ) tangent to say: No one can say someone is not a Christian because they find that person abhorrent or does abhorrent things. Being a Christian means you believe in some sort of Christ, and you can't really tell someone, "I believe in Christ!" that you somehow know that they do not. 

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