Tag Archive | "faith"

My Definition of God


God refers to a supreme being or a divine being.
Whether supreme beings or divine beings exist does not matter to me.
I live according to my own sense of right or wrong,
learning from experiences of past successes and past mistakes,
and any reward or punishment I may gain
are the results of the consequences of my acts,
and not because I prayed for a blessing or angered some god.

If a miracle were to happen in my life,
I would take it as a significant coincidence
rather than a sign of God’s existence.
For I know that miracles happen everyday,
to people of different faiths and values,
regardless of whether they pray.

If a great disaster were to mess me up
and make me believe in utter hell,
I would not blame God for it
or assume that his wrath is upon me.
I would not ask for his help and guidance,
nor would I believe that he would give it.
Instead, I will believe in myself,
in my strength to overcome this darkness,
and understand the weaknesses in me
that allowed it to happen in the first place.
I will aim to learn from this experience,
and strive to forgive myself
and the others who may have helped caused it.
And if I do not have the strength to forgive them,
I will keep in mind that bitterness
is a heavy thing to carry.

God, if he exists,
will not be bothered by what I do,
will not be collecting on my prayers,
will not be offended by my blasphemies.
But somehow, I cannot help but feel
that if he exists, he will
be somewhat proud of me.

Posted in PersonalComments (138)

Faith as reason?


glassandfinger-fullTo escape the problem, believers seem to assert that religious faith is very different from faith per se. According to believers, faith, like reason, is a method of acquiring knowledge. So there! Reason and faith are not the same but different systems. Some say that faith is above reason. Others, like most theologians today, accept faith as compatible with reason…but faith is…as they say, the last recourse. Everything that reason cannot explain must rely on faith, and some believers insist that reason assists faith (liberal Christians are more into this kind of faith.)

Nevertheless, whatever its use is, well…faith is still not reason.

Let me illustrate this.

Suppose Wikipedia tells me that the speed of light is 299,792,458 meters per second. If I accept this because I have faith in Wikipedia…will that make faith compatible with reason? Some believers say that, “Reason tells me that my faith in what Wikipedia tells me is justified because such things have been (or can be) scientifically demonstrated by technical experts with the proper equipment. My faith in what Wikipedia tells me can be backed up by evidence.”

It seems these believers are not talking about an act of faith. First, the article in Wikipedia can be collaborated in other books. If Wikipedia declares that light speed is 299,792, 465 we can always check it using other books available. Remember, in the example, it is the Wikipedia article about the speed of light that’s in question, not the speed of light itself. You do not need to verify the speed yourself or to measure it. All you have to do is to check other books that claim this. At least you may have an accurate or near accurate figure to the Wiki’s claim. Furthermore, we assume that these believes have already heard of light speed – Gosh! Every wide reader knows that light has a speed, so it is not strange for Wikipedia to have an article about light speed. That means the Wikipedia article about light speed has evidence and it already came to pass.

Will I say that I have faith in something if I feel my proposition is backed-up by evidences? If I said that, I will sound ridiculous. If you are so cock sure about the claim and you believe that it is backed-up by evidences, you do not need to address it as faith. I will never say that I have faith in the existence of the aswang (Philippine Ghoul Demon) or mananaggal (Self-Segmenting Viscera Sucker), UFO, Area 51 and that space man who lives under the White House because I believe they are true and that there are evidences that point to their existence. Nor will I say that I have faith in Fung Shui or astrology or Extra Sensory Perception if I believe that they are backed-up with scientific evidences. Remember that faith is belief in some proposition that is without evidence. If it is backed up by evidence (or it claims to have an evidence), then technically speaking that is not faith. You will not hear a parapsychologist claiming he has faith that ghosts exist. That’s because he already believes that the existence of ghosts are backed up by evidences…of scientific proofs.

Hey, do not blame me with this definition of faith!

According to Fr. Pablo Pastells, faith cannot be called the result of a reasoning process; it is a supernatural gift from God our Lord. Inasmuch as it is the beginning and source of justification, it cannot be acquired by our natural powers without the necessary assistance of divine grace. Faith is a voluntary act of homage by which man freely submits his reason to the authority of the revealing God. Faith is not blind for it finds support in the evidence and irrefutable motives of credibility which assure us of the objective truth, or the existence of revealed dogmas, even if our limited rational faculties cannot comprehend them.

Nevertheless, though it is human, hence deliberate and free, the supernatural act of faith cannot be blind. For the will reasonably submits the understanding to the yoke of faith, that is, to the authority of the revealing God. And both intellect and will, enlightened and strengthened by divine grace, give assent to the revealed truths of the supernatural order. (Fourth letter of Pastells to Rizal dated April 28, 1893)

Obviously, Fr. Pastells’ definition of faith is highly influenced by Thomas Aquinas. This brings us to the problem of Thomas Aquinas’ concept of faith. Aquinas believed that reason and faith could not contradict each other because they come from the same divine source. He is really against Averroës’ (Mohammed ibn Roshd) concept of the so-called twofold-truth theory that states a proposition may be philosophically true although theologically false (or vice versa). So in order to understand both Pastells and Aquinas’ view on faith:

P is not capable of rational demonstration until proposition Q (God revealed P).
However, proposition Q can be true if (1.) it must assume that God exists (2) miracles occur within the Christian church (3) scriptural prophesies have been fulfilled. Therefore, P is compatible with rationality.

For Thomas Aquinas faith is rational if we accept some proposition as true by means of…well you guessed it – FAITH! Let me elaborate. According to him, there are two kinds of faith: faith that is guided by reason (which he called general revelation), and that which cannot be demonstrated with human reason (special revelation). Let us concentrate on the “general revelation”. Based on Aquinas’ definition, you have to be preconditioned to some belief to accept natural theology as revealed truths. Without it, his general revelations fall apart.

Therefore, you need to rely on faith for you to make faith rational. Does it sound circular or it is just me? To make faith “rational”, you have to accept proposition (1) That God exists without question. According to Aquinas, he already proved it using his Quinque Viae (Five Ways). You also have to accept propositions (2) and (3). Remember, in theology, appeal to authority carries most weight; in philosophy, it carries least. Let us make something non-religious as an example: If we use Aquinas’ definition of faith by general revelation, well…

Suppose you went to see an “albulario” (faith healer) to cure a growing tumor in your balls. The albulario told you if you want to get better, you have to drink a potion made from the fruit of the “tuba-tuba” plant.

Using Thomas Aquinas’ general revelation, faith becomes reason when we accept the albulario’s claim for a cure if (1.) You accept that the tuba-tuba plant juice will heal the tumor in your testicles. (2.) You believe the town folks that say the “tuba-tuba” plant is medicinal. (3.) There is a book written by their ancestors that says the tuba-tuba plant is medicinal.

Without investigating evidences that will back-up proposition (1), (2) and (3), you drink the prescription because you think you are being reasonable with your faith in the albulario’s treatment, not even knowing that the tuba-tuba fruit is poisonous. You did not really use your reason here because you just accepted this point blank!

If the patient accepts this prescription by faith, he is not being rational, yet that is what Thomas Aquinas wants us to accept. What can I say about Aquinas in the issue of reason? In his writings, Aquinas gives more weight to faith rather than reason. Being a devoted Catholic and a believer, Aquinas believed that he already knew the absolute truth, truth as declared by the Catholic faith! If he could find apparently rational arguments to back-up his faith, so much the better; if he couldn’t, he needed only to fall back on divine revelation. That is not reasoning, that is special pleading. Therefore, Thomas Aquinas’ faith by general revelation has failed to provide us the link between faith and reason.

We now go to Immanuel Kant and Soren Kierkegaard’s definitions of faith. According to Kant, faith is the acceptance of ideals, which are theoretically indemonstrable, yet necessarily entailed by the indubitable reality of freedom. I think he calls faith as practical belief. Kierkegaard believes that faith is a total and passionate commitment to God.

Gosh! It is epistemology – but epistemic sense represents our knowledge about the world, which requires that we believe a given proposition to be true, not because we just want to feel good about it! Is Kant and Kierkegaard’s faith compatible with reason? Can I put someone behind bars just because it feels good? Will I believe Jun Lozada’s testimony not on the merits of his evidence but because I hate the First Gentleman Mike Arroyo’s ugly mug? You call that reason?

In trying to figure out the mind of Kierkegaard, a defender of faith may say, “Kierkegaard does not suggest that belief is not rational, but rather, it is not just a rational act. Sure, belief includes the passionate decision to make that “leap of faith” but no way is Kierkegaard suggesting that this leap is “blind” because the individual has to know (or has to have the reason) what they are leaping for. The individual must at least understand Christianity as the paradox of the Transcendent god entering into history as god incarnate (Christ), and must know why one needs to leap over the mystery of Christianity. (Because our sin prohibits us from understanding God.)

Faith, which Kierkegaard contends is a gift from God, is a necessary tool in overcoming our incapability to understand God (because of sin). This is the reason behind his words that faith is needed to believe in the paradox and the absurd. Faith, as per the context of Kierkegaard’s mind, is based on this reason; faith is not merely from a blind leap.”

However, such belief will also lead us to the problem of Aquinas’ “general revelation”. In order to apply Kierkegaard’s faith to reason, you have to leap “by faith” on Kierkegaard’s concept of god, sin and Christianity. That is circular reasoning.

We now go to Wittgensteinian fideism.

Blogger El Sordo from his blog, “Yet There Is Method In It”, offers an explanation through an example:

“Consider a group of Catholic theologians who meet on Wednesday afternoons to discuss metaphysical questions. These people use a number of curious words and expressions such as ‘essence’, ‘ground of being’, ‘grace’, ‘dialectic’, and so on. Yet the discourse in progress clearly is not arbitrary, but rule-guided. A beginner who uses an expression incorrectly is reprimanded, and may even be ostracized if he or she does not conform. Within the group it is well known who are the experts whose pronouncements are listened to with most respect, and so on. Here we could propose is a language-game, it is a rule-guided activity and probably (being religious) is a form of life. Within this language game, words and expressions have a use which is circumscribed by rules and conventions. On Wittgenstein’s later theory of meaning, therefore, we must surely say that these words and expressions have meaning, and that the metaphysical discourse is (to its game-players at least) meaningful.”

This whole language-game philosophy is on Ludwig Wittgenstein’s beetle in the box story. In Philosophical Investigations (1953), Wittgenstein says:
Suppose everyone had a box with something in it: we call it a “beetle.” No one can look into anyone else’s box, and everyone says he knows what a beetle is only by looking at his beetle.— Here it would be quite possible for everyone to have something different in his box. One might even imagine such a thing constantly changing. —But suppose the word “beetle” had a use in these people’s language? —If so it would not be used as the name of a thing. The thing in the box has no place in the language game at all; not even as a something: for the box might even be empty. —No, one can “divide through” by the thing in the box; it cancels out, whatever it is. [Section 293]

According to Wittgenstein, religious discourse is embedded in a form of life and has its own rules and logic. It can only be understood and evaluated in its own terms, and any attempt to impose standards on such discourse from the outside – for example, from science – is quite inappropriate. Since religious discourse is a separate unique language game different from science, religious statements, unlike scientific ones, are not empirically testable.

I have used Wittgenstein to secure my contention that faith is not reason nor it is compatible with reason. I will now elaborate this using El Sordo’s example. If you notice El Sordo used a singular group in his example, which was a group of Catholic theologians. He is right that any person outside the group may not understand their religious language play. However, what if the group started to talk about Catholic doctrine like the Eucharist (where the Catholic believes that the bread and wine will transform into the actual blood and flesh of Christ) and a “Born-Again” Christian is listening. Well even that Christian (which also uses the same religious terms like essence’, ‘ground of being’, ‘grace’, ‘dialectic’, and so on…) will be estranged with the Catholics’ discourse. Let’s see…in a Catholic language game, the Pope is infallible in spiritual matters but the Born-Again Christian language game makes the Pope fallible. Gosh! I can’t distinguish who’s right between the two! The problem with Wittgensteinian’s fideism is that it will make it appear that all religious discourse uttered by different religions are relative to the language game in which they belong. How can we use reason if there is no place for errors in the religious language-game? How can we make any investigation and arrive at any conclusion if truth is relative in the religious language-game? If believers claim that Wittgenstein’s religious language game secures religious faith, its relativity makes it irrational.

On the contention of Griffith-Thomas and McGrath in relation to faith, well what can I say…It is suggested that both people agree with Aquinas’ notion of “General Revelation”, it is a logical conclusion to say that both also fell on the issue of the problems of Aquinas’ general revelation.

As I have said earlier on this article, do not blame me on the definition of faith. According to the Christian sacred book (which is the Bible):

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. – Hebrew 11:1

That means faith is to believe something which has not yet come to pass or for which one has no evidence. However, most believers sometimes contradict this very definition of faith. For them, faith must reconcile with reason. A reasonable faith? Sounds like an oxymoron.

How does a believer reconcile faith with reason? Typically, a believer has to place reason in a narrow framework and then place this framework in a large sphere occupied by faith. Then the believer will create a scenario to place faith as compatible to reason by making reason accept the believer’s “truth” derived from special pleading from his source of authority which was derived from…that’s right folks…faith!

So now, you know the secret of this magic trick.

Posted in ReligionComments (6)

He believes in miracles


he_believes_in_miracles_image2My friend is not a very religious person, but he prays before every meal and goes to mass every Sunday with his family. He is aware of and has great respect for my lack of faith, and we occasionally find ourselves discussing and debating on religion. Some of our discussions revolve around our contrasting views of Jesus Christ – he firmly believes in him and his preachings, while I take him to be nothing more than a compelling historical figure. Other discussions are about our similar negative views on the overly-structural methods of the Catholic Church in propagating their faith. Sometimes, our minds repel, while in other times, they are in sync. He is always open to the thought-provoking ideas I lay on the table and tries to judge them without bias.

During one of these discussions, he narrated to me a story about his grandfather. This story had a great impact on him, and he admits himself that it has strongly solidified his belief in God. He told me that a long time ago, his grandfather was diagnosed with cancer. He has consulted with several doctors, all of which were consistent with the cancer diagnosis. He was told to have surgery. On the day of the surgery, he managed to escape from the hospital to go to a nearby church to pray. Eventually, he was found by his family and/or hospital personnel and was brought back to the hospital. After a series of medical tests, they found his cancer to have completely vanished. So he never had that surgery and went home cancer free.

My friend told me that he sometimes thinks his grandfather to be overly-religious, but softens his judgment because he knows what his grandfather had been through. That reminded me of my overly-religious mother, who initially was not a very religious person. But there was a time when she was going through a difficult crisis, and with the help of Opus Dei and its teachings, she was able to cope with it and actually managed to resolve the crisis. It may not be as life-changing as the cure of cancer, but it was very significant for her. Now, she is a devout Catholic, and a supernumerary in Opus Dei. These two individuals have had significant experiences in their lives which they attribute to their faith. We cannot just easily tell them that they must resort to reason, that their belief in God is wrong, when their lives are changed by it.

I am in no position to confirm or disprove the validity of my friend’s story. I did suggest certain other possibilities such as: a non-threatening easily curable disease that mimics the signs and symptoms of that specific cancer but cannot be easily detected by medical practitioners of that time and may have been cured medically by some chemical component of the medicines he was taking or cured naturally by his immune system sometime within the duration after his last medical test prior to his escape and the time he was tested after he was found. Yes, that was a very long sentence. The point is, it may just be a coincidence. However, it was a pretty compelling coincidence that I, myself, could not fault his grandfather, who is by all means a normal human being with human thoughts and emotions, to immediately assume it as some divine miracle.

For whatever the scientific explanation behind it, one can still argue that the timing of its occurrence may be the decision of God. Another example would be the parting of the Red Sea. Even if it may have been caused by some natural phenomenon like shifting tectonic plates or unstable magnetic fields, the fact is, it happened at the moment when Moses raised his staff and the Israelites needed an escape route. By their knowledge of seas (they just don’t part) or staffs (they don’t cause seas to part) how else could the Israelites have interpreted it other than as a miracle of God? Whether by lack of knowledge or lack of mental health (let’s say they may have all taken hallucinogenic herbs and may have hallucinated the whole ordeal), the fact is, they believed it to have happened that way, was not presented with enough explanations that disproves that belief, and was greatly and personally affected by its occurrence, and most especially, its timing. The natural phenomenon could have happened on any normal day, but the fact that it happened at that specific time could easily (though not necessarily correctly) be assumed as the will of God. Disclaimer: I do not know if the parting of the Red Sea actually happened. It’s just an example.

My friend believed the story of his grandfather to be true, to have been caused by God, whether miracle or explainable. And he says that I am too mistrusting and over-skeptical to be so vehement in disproving it to the point of trying to come up with some weird disease. Eventually, our discussion ended without any joint conclusion. He stands firm in his belief in God and this so-called miracle, and I still maintain that it may be caused by the weird disease.. or other explainable thing. And then we ate pizza and went to videoke with friends.

Posted in Personal, Religion, SocietyComments (8)

A Simple Straight to the Fact Answer Will Do.


the_power_of_prayer4I don’t know…maybe it’s a good way to escape dilemmas. We call it here in the Philippines as “pa-pogi points”. Obviously, majority of their cult followers are either dumb or stupid to figure it out. But try reading Christian apologist reactions here in the Internet and you will notice that they are not answering questions. They are just …well …it sounded more like senseless, pretentious babbles (“ngak-ngak!”) to me.

One good example can be found on how a certain Eliseo Soriano tried to answer one of atheism simple inquiry, “Why won’t God heal amputees”?

First Mr. Soriano called the question as “stupid”. Hmmmm…so since you can’t answer the question, it becomes stupid huh? But I don’t blame Mr. Soriano, it’s a common Christian apologist tactic. Norman Giesler called the Paradox of the Stone as a meaningless question.

Now let us tackle the question “Why won’t God heal amputees?”
Bible idolaters believe that a pious Christian can ask God anything. Nothing is impossible to God (if it exist). Jesus Christ is even too generous to provide us his explanation. According to Jesus, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” (Mark 11:24)
Now in this scenario, a Christian prayed hard to God to make his severe limb grow back again…something like a lizard’s tail or a crab’s claw.
Christians agree that God works in a mysterious, supernatural way. Now, when we talk about supernatural, we’re talking about events not considered to be normal…hmmmm just like a miracle. Something is said to be supernatural if it’s beyond any scientific explanation. If a person’s severe limb grows back, well…we can consider it a supernatural event.

The Bible is full of these alleged supernatural acts of God. Talking donkeys, sticks that turned into living snakes, dead people rising from the grave, iron ax head that floats on water and people walking on water… Sure sounded like things from that T.V. show The X-Files, right? Anyway, a severed arm growing back may be considered a supernatural miracle. Any person who doubts the existence of a god will sure buy the whole shebang if he will see some feat like that.

Now how many times an atheist will tell these Christian charlatans, “justifying God’s existence just by reading Bible chapter and verses will not achieved anything.” If a guy rationalize the existence of a god base on Biblical fairy-tales…well that will automatically make the reality of Spider-Man and The Batman possible. So an event such as a growing arm replacing a lost one will surely be a hit! Not only does a god proved his powers to his devouted, delusional followers but also proved his existence beyond reasonable doubt.

Bear in mind the Bible claim that 1.) Nothing is impossible to God, 2.) That faith can move mountains and 3.) Prayer works.

Yet until now, there is no such event. Even sites said to be phenomenal such as Fatima and Lourdes, there is not a single case of an amputee miraculously been restored a new leg or arm. Not even a detached finger! Even in the pages of the Bible, you will by no means find a story of an amputee growing back any lost limbs (yet dead guys walking out of the grave like zombies are too numerous). Christian evangelists and apologists would love to tell non-believers about the power of their god by telling stories of how supernaturally the Red Sea parted and how the Sun stops moving, yet you won’t find a single case of God regenerating a severed arm or leg of his favorite people. So is that such an impossible act for an all-powerful, omnipotent God?

So sorry to dissapoint you Mr. Soriano but the question is still not answered. Your long and dull explanation and biblical canting haven’t satisfies the inquiry. Oh and by the way, the question is not stupid as you have indicted. The reply needs a good explanation…and giving a very lengthy Bible apology is a very shoddy way of dodging the issue.

Posted in OthersComments (24)

Humility: Reason vs. Faith


I often hear religious people say that freethinkers are proud people, leaning on their own human understanding. The faithful claim to be humble, acknowledging our limited wisdom and thereby surrendering mind and will to the Almighty, the Supreme Being of the universe.

At first it seems they have a point, but if we look closely we’ll see that it’s actually the other way around. While theists may appear humble before their God, they are actually quite contemptuous towards people who do not share their beliefs. I could not explain it better than a commenter named Pecier Carpena Decierdo:

Reason is humble, faith is not. Reason is open to the possibility that its claims are wrong, faith is not. Faith is cock-sure and certain, scientific reason is not. Faith makes claims to super-human knowledge, scientific reason does not.

The only knowledge human brains can contain is human knowledge, that is, limited knowledge. Because all we have are human brains with limited human knowledge, we cannot claim to be certain about everything. Yet faith, that archenemy of reason, makes people believe that they can be certain about things they actually know nothing about.

I just watched a one-hour video on how the universe could have literally come out of nothing by accident, negating the necessary first cause or creator. The speaker remarked that this shows just how insignificant we really are. And it is a humbling thought indeed.

Which leads us to ponder, what then, is the purpose of our existence if we came out of nothing by pure chance? I guess my answer will be that the purpose of our existence is to find a purpose for our existence. Existence precedes essence, and if we indeed came out of nothingness because of pure luck instead of being created by a deity, then I guess that would be the greatest and most generous and most humbling miracle of all. And since we are lucky enough to exist at a point in time and space where conditions are suitable for life, it is wise to open our eyes to the world around and not waste our finite days haughtily holding on to some eternal “truth” that demands suspending our reason. Surely we have better things to do here.

innerminds.wordpress.com

Posted in Religion, ScienceComments (281)

The Atheist Professor with no Brain ?


atheistDoug Kreuger has expanded the well-known Christian legend of the atheist philosophy professor who is unable to prove that he has a brain. (Special thanks to Steven Carr for this post.)

“LET ME EXPLAIN THE problem science has with Jesus Christ.” The atheist professor of philosophy pauses before his class and then asks one of his new students to stand. “You’re a Christian, aren’t you, son?”

“Yes, sir.”

“So you believe in God?”

“Absolutely.”

“Is God good?”

“Sure! God’s good.”

“Is God all-powerful? Can God do anything?”

“Yes.”

“Are you good or evil?”

“The Bible says I’m evil.”

The professor grins knowingly. “Ahh! THE BIBLE!” He considers for a moment.

“Here’s one for you. Let’s say there’s a sick person over here, and you can cure him. You can do it. Would you help them? Would you try?”

“Yes sir, I would.”

“So you’re good…!”

“I wouldn’t say that.”

“Why not say that? You would help a sick and maimed person if you could…in fact most of us would if we could… God doesn’t.”

No answer.

“He doesn’t, does he? My brother was a Christian who died of cancer even though he prayed to Jesus to heal him. How is this Jesus good? Hmmm? Can you answer that one?”

No answer.

The elderly man is sympathetic. “No, you can’t, can you?” He takes a sip of water from a glass on his desk to give the student time to relax. In philosophy, you have to go easy with the new ones. “Let’s start again, young fella. Is God good?”

“Er… Yes.”

“Is Satan good?”

“No.”

“Where does Satan come from?”

The student falters. “From…God…”

“That’s right. God made Satan, didn’t he?” The elderly man runs his bony fingers through his thinning hair and turns to the smirking, student audience. “I think we’re going to have a lot of fun this semester, ladies and gentlemen.” He turns back to the Christian. “Tell me, son. Is there evil in this world?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Evil’s everywhere, isn’t it? Did God make everything?”

“Yes.”

“Who created evil?”

No answer.

“Is there sickness in this world? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All the terrible things – do they exist in this world?”

The student squirms on his feet. “Yes.”

“Who created them?”

No answer.

The professor suddenly shouts at his student. “WHO CREATED THEM? TELL ME, PLEASE!” The professor closes in for the kill and climb into the Christian’s face.

In a still small voice: “God created all evil, didn’t He, son?” No answer. The student tries to hold the steady, experienced gaze and fails.

Suddenly the lecturer breaks away to pace the front of the classroom like an aging panther. The class is mesmerized. “Tell me,” he continues, “How is it that this God is good if He created all evil throughout all time?” The professor swishes his arms around to encompass the wickedness of the world. “All the hatred, the brutality, all the pain, all the torture, all the death and ugliness and all the suffering created by this good God is all over the world, isn’t it, young man?”

No answer.

“Don’t you see it all over the place? Huh?” Pause. “Don’t you?” The professor leans into the student’s face again and whispers, “Is God good?”

No answer.

“Do you believe in Jesus Christ, son?”

The student’s voice betrays him and cracks. “Yes, professor. I do.”

The old man shakes his head sadly. “Science says you have five senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Have you ever seen your Jesus?”

“No, sir. I’ve never seen Him.”

“Then tell us if you’ve ever heard your Jesus?”

“No, sir. I have not.”

“Have you ever felt your Jesus, tasted your Jesus or smelt your Jesus… In fact, do you have any sensory perception of your God whatsoever?”

No answer.

“Answer me, please.”

“No, sir, I’m afraid I haven’t.”

“You’re AFRAID… you haven’t?”

“No, sir.”

“Yet you still believe in him?”

“…yes…”

“That takes FAITH!” The professor smiles sagely at the underling. “According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says your God doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son? Where is your God now?”

The student doesn’t answer.

“Sit down, please.”

The Christian sits…Defeated.

Another Christian raises his hand. “Professor, may I address the class?”
The professor turns and smiles. “Ah, another Christian in the vanguard! Come, come, young man. Speak some proper wisdom to the gathering.”
The Christian looks around the room. “Some interesting points you are making, sir. Now I’ve got a question for you. Is there such thing as heat?”
‘Yes,” the professor replies. “There’s heat.”

“Is there such a thing as cold?”
“Yes, son, there’s cold too.”

“No, sir, there isn’t.”

The professor’s grin freezes. The room suddenly goes very cold.

The second Christian continues. “You can have lots of heat, even more heat, super-heat, mega-heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat, but we don’t have anything called ‘cold’. We can hit 458 degrees below zero, which is no heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no such thing as cold, otherwise we would be able to go colder than 458 – You see, sir, cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat we can measure in thermal units because heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of it.

“Silence.
A pin drops somewhere in the classroom. “Is there such a thing as darkness, professor?”

“That’s a dumb question, son. What is night if it isn’t darkness? What are you getting at…?”

“So you say there is such a thing as darkness?”

“Yes…”

“You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is not something, it is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light, but if you have no light constantly, you have nothing, and it’s called darkness, isn’t it? That’s the meaning we use to define the word. In reality, Darkness isn’t. If it were, you would be able to make darkness darker and give me a jar of it. Can you…give me a jar of darker darkness, professor?”

Despite himself, the professor smiles at the young effrontery before him.
This will indeed be a good semester. “Would you mind telling us what your point is, young man?”

“Yes, professor. My point is, your philosophical premise is flawed to start with and so your conclusion must be in error….”

The professor goes toxic. “Flawed…? How dare you…!”

“Sir, may I explain what I mean?” The class is all ears.

“Explain… oh, explain…” The professor makes an admirable effort to regain control. Suddenly he is affability itself. He waves his hand to silence the class, for the student to continue.

“You are working on the premise of duality,” the Christian explains. “That for example there is life and then here’s death; a good God and a bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, science cannot even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism but has never seen, much less fully understood them. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing. Death is not the opposite of life, merely the absence of it.” The young man holds up a newspaper he takes from the desk of a neighbor who has been reading it. “Here is one of the most disgusting tabloids this country hosts, professor. Is there such a thing as immorality?”

“Of course there is, now look…”

“Wrong again, sir. You see, immorality is merely the absence of morality. Is there such thing as injustice? No. Injustice is the absence of justice. Is there such a thing as evil?” The Christian pauses. “Isn’t evil the absence of good?”

The professor’s face has turned an alarming color. He is so angry he is temporarily speechless.

The Christian continues. “If there is evil in the world, professor, and we all agree there is, then God, if he exists, must be accomplishing a work through the agency of evil. What is that work, God is accomplishing? The Bible tells us it is to see if each one of us will, of our own free will, choose good over evil.”

The professor bridles. “As a philosophical scientist, I don’t view this matter as having anything to do with any choice; as a realist, I absolutely do not recognize the concept of God or any other theological factor as being part of the world equation because God is not observable.”

“I would have thought that the absence of God’s moral code in this world is probably one of the most observable phenomena going,” the Christian replies. “Newspapers make billions of dollars reporting it every week! Tell me, professor. Do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?”

“If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, young man, yes, of course I do.”

“Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?”
The professor makes a sucking sound with his teeth and gives his student a silent, stony stare. “Professor. Since no-one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor, are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you now not a scientist, but a priest?”

“I’ll overlook your impudence in the light of our philosophical discussion. Now, have you quite finished?” the professor hisses.

“So you don’t accept God’s moral code to do what is righteous?”
“I believe in what is – that’s science!”

“Ahh! SCIENCE!” the student’s face spits into a grin. “Sir, you rightly state that science is the study of observed phenomena. Science too is a premise which is flawed…”

“SCIENCE IS FLAWED..?” the professor splutters.

The class is in uproar. The Christian remains standing until the commotion has subsided. “To continue the point you were making earlier to the other student, may I give you an example of what I mean?”

The professor wisely keeps silent.

The Christian looks around the room. “Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen the professor’s brain?”

The class breaks out in laughter.

The Christian points towards his elderly, crumbling tutor. “Is there anyone here who has ever heard the professor’s brain… felt the professor’s brain, touched or smelt the professor’s brain?”

No one appears to have done so.

The Christian shakes his head sadly. “It appears no-one here has had any sensory perception of the professor’s brain whatsoever. Well, according to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says the professor has no brain.”

The class is in chaos. The Christian sits… Because that is what a chair is for.

The professor, amused at the student’s antics, asks the student whether he’s ever read anything about science.

“No,” says the student. “I only know what I’ve heard in church.”

“That explains your ignorance about what science is, young man,” says the professor. “Empirical knowledge of something does not always entail direct observation. We can observe the effects of something and know that it must exist. Electrons have not been observed, but they can create an observable trail that can be observed, so we can know they exist.”

“Oh,” said the Christian.

“No one has observed my heart, but we can hear it beating. We also know from empirical knowledge of people that no one can live without a heart, real or manufactured, or at least not without being also hooked up to some medical equipment. So we can know that I have a heart even though we have not seen it.”

“Oh, I see. That makes sense,” said the Christian student.

“Similarly, we can know that I have a brain. I wouldn’t be able to talk, walk, and so on unless I had one, would I?” said the professor.

“I guess not.”

“In fact, if I had no brain I couldn’t do anything at all. Except maybe become a televangelist!”

The class broke up with laughter. Even the Christian laughed.
“Evolution is known to be true because of evidence,” continued the professor. “It is the best explanation for the fossil record. Even prominent creationists admit that the transition from reptiles to mammals is well documented in the fossil record. A creationist debate panel, including Michael Behe and Philip Johnson, conceded this on a televised debate on PBS. It was on Buckley’s “Firing Line” show. Did you see it?”

The Christian student cleared his throat and said in a low voice, “My mom won’t let me watch educational TV. She thinks it will weaken my faith.”

The professor shook his head sadly. “Knowledge does have a way of doing that,” he said. “But in any case, evolution is also the best explanation for phenomena that have been observed.”

The Christian student sputters, “You–you mean we HAVE seen it?”
“Of course. Evolution has occured within recent times, and it continues to occur. Birds and insects not native to Hawaii were introduced just a couple of centuries ago and have evolved to take better advantage of the different flora. So this evolution has taken place within recorded history. Recent history. Did you know that?”

“Uh, no.”

“Viruses other diseases evolve to become resistant to medicine. This is not only observed but it is a major problem that science must confront every day. Mosquitos in the tunnels of London’s underground have evolved to become separate species because of their isolation from other groups of mosquitos. But enough about evolution. That doesn’t have anything to do with our issue, evil, does it?”

“Well…”

“What does it have to do with our issue?” asked the professor.

“Well, if you don’t believe in god, then you must believe we came from apes.”

The professor laughed. “Evolutionists don’t believe that people came from apes or even monkeys. They believe that humans and apes had a common ancestor.”

“Wow!” said the Christian. “That’s not what they told me at church.”
“I’m sure. They can’t refute evolution so they have to spread misinformation about it. But don’t you know that many Christians believe that god made humans by evolution?”

“I didn’t know that.”

“In fact, of the four people who debated the evolution side on PBS, on William F. Buckley’s ‘Firing Line,’ which I just mentioned, two of them were theists. One of them is a reverend, in fact.”

“Really?”

“Really. Many denominations of Christianity embrace evolution.

Catholicism, the largest denomination of Christianity, is compatible with evolution. So evolution is not relevant here, is it?”

“I guess not.”

“Even if it were true that you have to be an atheist to believe evolution, which is not the case, and even if it were the case that evolution was unsupported by evidence, which is also not the case, this would not explain evil at all, would it. It is irrelevant.”

“I see that now,” said the Christian. “I don’t even know why I brought it up. I guess I thought it was an example of how you believe something without evidence.”

“Well,” said the professor. “As you can see, it is not. There is plenty of evidence for evolution. And even if there were no evidence, this has no bearing on the issue of evil. As we proceed through the philosophy course, you will see how to use your reasoning ability to separate important issues from irrelevant ones.”

“I’m guess learning already,” said the student, looking at the floor.
“But back to the problem of evil,” said the professor. “You stated that evil is the absence of good. How does that solve the problem of evil?”
The student said lifelessly: “If evil is the absence of good, then god did not create evil.” It was evident that this was something the student had learned by rote and had often repeated.

The professor shrugged his shoulders. “Okay, let’s suppose for the moment that this is true. This still does not explain evil. If a tidal wave wipes out a whole town, and 100,000 people die, is that evil?”
“There is the absence of good,” said the student.

“But so what? The problem is why god did not prevent the disaster. If god is all-powerful he can prevent it, and if he is all-knowing he knows that it is about to happen. So whether he created the tidal wave is not relevant. What we want to know is why he did not do anything to stop it.”

The student looked confused. “But why should he prevent it? It’s not his fault.”

“If a human being had the power to prevent a tidal wave wiping out a town, and this person intentionally failed to stop it, we would not say that the person is good. Even if the person said, ‘It’s not my fault,’ we would be appalled that someone could stand by and do nothing as thousands die. So if god does not prevent natural disasters, and he is able to do so, we should not say that god is good by the same reasoning. In fact, we would probably say that god is evil.”

The Christian student thought for a moment. “I guess I’d have to agree.”

“So redefining evil as the absence of good does nothing to solve the problem of evil,” said the professor. “At best it shows that god did not create it, but this does not explain why god does not prevent it.”
The Christian student shook a finger at the professor. “But that’s according to our human standards. What if god has a higher morality? We can’t judge him by our standards.”

The professor laughed. “Then you just lost your case. If you admit that god does not fit our definition of good, then we should not call him good. Case closed.”

“I don’t understand,” said the student, wrinkling his brow.

“If I go outside and see a vehicle with four tires, a metal body, a steering wheel, a motor and so on, and it fits the definition of a car, is it a car?” “Of course it is,” said the Christian student. “That’s what a car is.”

“But what if someone says that on some other definition it could be considered an airplane. Does that mean it’s not a car?”

“No,” said the student. “It still fits the definition of a car. That’s what we mean by saying that it’s a car. It doesn’t fit the definition of an airplane, so we shouldn’t call it that.”

“Exactly,” said the professor. “If it fits the definition, then that’s what it is. If god fits the definition of good, then he is good. If he does not, then he is not. If you admit that he does not fit our definition of good, then he is not good. It does no good to say that he could be ‘good’ in some other definition. If we want to know whether he is good by our definition, you have answered that question. God is not good.”

“I don’t believe it!” said the Christian student. “A few minutes ago I would have laughed at the suggestion that god is not good, but now I actually agree. God doesn’t fit the definition of good, so he’s not good.”
“There you go,” said the professor.

“But wait a minute,” said the student. “God could still be good in some other definition even if we don’t call him good. Despite what we think, god could still have his own morality that says he’s good. Even if we couldn’t call him good, that doesn’t mean that he isn’t good on some definition. He could have his own definition anyway.”

“Oh, you would not want to push the view that god might be good in some other definition,” said the professor.

“Why not?” “Well, if he has definitions of things that are radically different from our own, he might have a different definition of lots of other things. He might have his own definitions of such things as eternal reward, or eternal life. Your supposed eternal life in heaven might just be a year, or it could be a thousand years of torture. God could just say he has a definition of reward that includes excruciating torture as part of the definition.”

“That’s right!” said the Christian, jumping up. His eyes were wide open. “If god can redefine any word, then anything goes. God could send all believers to what we call hell and say that it is heaven. He could give us ten days in heaven and say that that’s his definition of eternity!”

“Now you’re thinking!” said the professor, pointing a finger at the student. “This is what a philosophy class is supposed to do for students.”

The Christian student continued. “God could promise us eternal life and then not give it to us and say that’s his definition of keeping a promise!”

“Yes, yes,” said the professor.

“I can’t believe I used to fall for this Christianity stuff. It’s so indefensible,” said the student, shaking his head. “Just a few moment’s thought and all the arguments that my church gave me in Sunday school just collapse.”

“So it would seem,” said the professor.

“I’m going to go to my church tonight and give the pastor a piece of my mind. They never tell me about important stuff like this. And they sure didn’t tell me the truth about evolution!”

The student, who stood up as a Christian, now sat down as an atheist. And he started using his brain–because that’s what it’s for. The other students in the class sat there, stunned, for a few moments. They knew they had witnessed the changing of a person’s life, the redirection of a young mind from falsehood and religious dogma to the honest pursuit of truth.

The students looked at each other and then began applauding. This soon gave way to cheering. The professor took a bow, laughing. When the students calmed down he continued his lecture, and class attendance was high for the rest of the semester.

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What Return Can I Make?


Here is something I wrote back when I still considered myself a liberal theist. Although I’m now practically a deist who is rather skeptical about a Creator’s intervention beyond causing the Big Bang, I still stand with most of what I said albeit not quite as smugly. More importantly, I believe there are a few noteworthy points here that the freethinker might find interesting.

* * * * *

Lately I’ve been renewing my spirituality (I did not say “religion”) and what’s rather ironic about it is that it all started when I stumbled upon some atheist blogs and a discussion about the Problem of Evil.

Although I have always maintained that I am a Christian albeit a non-traditional one, I do admire the atheists’ and agnostics’ attitude towards the search for Truth by practicing Freethought – a philosophical viewpoint that holds that beliefs should be formed on the basis of science, logic, and reason, and should not be influenced by authority, tradition, or any other dogma. (Wikipedia)

Ah, science, logic, and reason instead of authority, tradition, or dogma. One thing the atheists mock about the fundamentalists is the latter’s preference to dogma over reason. And that’s the same reason why so many young Christians question their beliefs and then feel guilty for not being steadfast in their faith. Some of them take the first scary step in the journey seeking Truth while others abandon science in favor of authority and end up still feeling guilty and thirsty for answers.

I am going to share something I read from Scott Peck’s book several years ago because it attempts to answer the questions begged by the previous paragraph. Of course I could also just direct you to the link here but that would be plain laziness on my part. Besides, it’s a rather long article and I do not want to take so much time and energy from my dear readers, and so I will try to paraphrase and condense it from what I understand, interjecting my own personal experiences. It’s called the Stages of Spiritual Growth.

Stage 1: Chaotic, Antisocial

All children are born into this stage, but some reach adulthood without ever leaving it. These are the people who submit to nothing but their own free will and have no beliefs or principles, and their relationships with other people are often manipulative and self-serving.

Stage 2: Formal, Institutional, Fundamental

Because of the chaotic life in Stage 1, some people experience intense psychological pain or get into trouble and end up converting into Stage 2 by joining or being committed to an institution – military, school, an organization, jail, a church. Stage 2 people follow rules but do not care to think about the reasons behind them. They do not want to hear anyone question the beliefs they hold so dearly especially if it is a logical, valid question, because the institution with its dogma is the only thing preventing these people from falling back into the chaotic life in State 1, and they especially do not want that. (Some criminals, when caught and imprisoned, quickly turn into model prisoners and given early paroles, only to commit another crime on the first day of their release. That’s because they rely solely on the institution – prison – and have no principles of their own.)

Stage 3: Skeptic, Individual

When Stage 2 people marry and raise a family, their children often become Stage 2 at a very early age. But as they grow into their teens they become so used to order that they tend to take for granted the rules and beliefs of their parents and even question these beliefs. Here they are already into Stage 3, the truth seeker. For the Stage 2 people, Stage 3 is the same as Stage 1 – non-believers – and so they would try to convert them with their doctrines, only to end up getting ridiculed. But Stage 1 and Stage 3 are very much different even though they both do not submit to an institution or dogma. Because while Stage 1 people submit only to their own free will, people in Stage 3 submit to something higher: Truth.

People in Stage 3 are often atheists or at least agnostics because they are very logical and scientific. Let’s face it: until now we still cannot scientifically prove that there is a God. There are many personal testimonies about experiences with Grace of course, but they are never enough to let us arrive at a conclusion based on scientific method, which demands that the outcome must be repeatable in a laboratory-controlled experiment (like water always boiling at 100 degrees Celsius at sea level or at one atmosphere of pressure). Now there are many who claim that God took away their cancer, but not all who pray are healed.

Stage 4 – Mystic, Communal

Since this is a rather complicated stage, I would like to quote directly from the book instead of using my own words:

If people in Stage III seek truth deeply and widely enough, they find what they are looking for–enough pieces to begin to be able to fit them together, but never enough to complete the whole puzzle. In fact, the more pieces they find, the larger and more magnificent the puzzle becomes. Yet they are able to get glimpses of the “big picture” and to see that it is very beautiful indeed–and that it strangely resembles those “primitive myths and superstitions” their Stage II parents or grandparents believe in. At that point they begin their conversion to Stage IV, which is the mystic communal stage of spiritual development.

Now the problem with some atheists is that they automatically assume that all religious or spiritual people are in Stage 2: ignorant and superstitious. This should not be the case because while Stage 2 people think of God as a sky daddy who will always rescue them, for the people in Stage 4 it is more of a personal relationship. As Scott Peck explained about how all the great religions have the ability to communicate with both Stage 2 and Stage 4:

In the Christian example: “Jesus is my savior,” Stage II often translates this into a Jesus who is a kind of fairy godmother who will rescue us whenever we get in trouble as long as we remember to call upon his name. At Stage IV, “Jesus is my savior” is translated as “Jesus, through his life and death, taught the way, not through virgin births, cosmic ascensions, walking on water and blood sacrifice of reconciliation – man with an external daddy Warbucks that lives in the sky – mythological stories interpreted as literal accounts, but rather as one loving the whole, the outcasts, overcoming prejudices, incorporating inclusiveness and unconditional love, this, with the courage to be as oneself – that is what I must follow for my salvation.”

Personally, I do not think that I am already in Stage 4. Most likely I am still on Stage 3 and just beginning to approach Stage 4. And that is why I kept quoting from the book instead of using my own words when explaining Stage 4.

And although I could never scientifically prove to anyone that there is a God, I do have many experiences with what I would call Grace. These experiences may not be enough (and especially not repeatable in a laboratory-controlled experiment) in order to arrive at a conclusion based on scientific method, but the blessings are far too many and far too gracious to be attributed to mere chance alone – or I must be a very lucky guy.

Yes, I know there is so much unnecessary suffering in Africa and in other parts of the world, even right here in our own country. Yes, I recognize that there is the Problem of Evil. But I still believe in God, and although His Grace may not be consistent or even predictable, I believe that when one keeps his life open to Grace, he will be able to catch it when it comes.

And considering myself blessed beyond what I think I deserve, I could now only ask, “What return can I make?”

innerminds.wordpress.com

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Will to be Whole


Oh you being of the heavens, I am praying
In the middle of the battlefield of my soul
I am crying, can you hear me?
Can you see me in pain?
Holding on to the will to be whole

I’m not asking for mercy or forgiveness
Or to help me out of the darkness I’m in
I’m not asking for strength
Or for some kind of courage
Not even to deliver me from sin

Here I’m standing proud like the sun
Hidden behind the gray clouds of rain
I am standing to show you
That despite all my tears
I am willing to endure all these pain

I don’t blame you for the fire that I’m treading
For the evil companions serving guide
Save me if you wish to
Yet I shall not praise you
But I’m grateful that you’re always by my side

Watch me, I shall show you I am worthy
Of the friendship you endlessly give
It might take a while
But someday I shall smile
Not afraid to continue to live

Oh my friend in the heavens, I am saying
I’m standing on the battlefield of my soul
While I’m crying and bleeding
While I’m drowning in my pain
I shall hold on to the will to be whole

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I Just Want Him Safe


I call to you to keep him safe
Are you listening to me?
I want you watching him
Because I can’t
I’m just a helpless girl
Who doesn’t know a thing
About prayer
Well, I’m praying now
Desperately

I call to you to keep him safe
Are you listening to me?

Do I have the right to pray
So doubtfully like this?
There’s no one else to turn to
And I’m afraid
Please make him strong enough
To be alright
Please get him through the night
While I pray in half-belief
To the one he trusts completely

Do I have the right to pray
So doubtfully like this?

Allow me to pretend
To believe and trust you
That’s the best I could attempt
To fight the haunting thoughts
Of his body on the pavement
Lifeless, breathless, cold
Imagination unfolds
And I’m trembling
I’m afraid to lose him

Please allow me to pretend
To believe and trust you

Allow me to embrace
This flicker of faith
There’s this hollow feeling
Of not knowing
And I can’t find someone else to run to
So pardon me if I call you
I mean no disrespect
I’m just a helpless girl
Who’s so afraid

So allow me to embrace
This flicker of faith

I just want him safe.

(This poem was written in September 2003, when I was struggling with being an Agnostic. Photo was taken by me on one of my trips to Japan.)

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Forsaken


I don’t even know you’re there
But somehow you show me that you care
Forsaken – what I ought to be
Yet without you there, you seem to comfort me

I’ve committed terrible disgrace
Can’t excuse myself with “It’s only a phase”
Forsaken – what I ought to be
Yet for countless times you seem to shelter me

I find myself in the dark
And I won’t even call your name
But for some unknown reason
You give me something to breathe on
And I realize you’re there just the same

People treat you like a king
People see you as some sort of savior
I don’t see you that way
Would you be mad
Or would that be okay?

I criticize those who praise you
Don’t even know if I believe you’re true
Forsaken – what I ought to be
I don’t call, yet you’re there for me

Don’t know if I consider you a friend
I even laugh at you every now and then
Forsaken – what I ought to be
And what exactly did you see in me?

I find myself in the dark
And I won’t even call your name
But for some unknown reason
You give me something to live on
And I realize you’re there just the same

People treat you like a king
People see you as some sort of savior
I don’t see you that way
Would you be mad
Or would that be okay?

I don’t know what I am to you
Don’t know if I even give you what is due
Why aren’t you forsaking me?
Perhaps you’re really who I believed you to be

People treat you like a king
People see you as some sort of savior
I don’t see you that way
Would you be mad
Or would that be okay?

But I know for sure that it would be okay.

(This poem – meant to be a song – was written in April 2003, when I was struggling with being an Agnostic.)

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Can you justify by mere faith?


can-you-justify-by-mere-faithIn a recent debate that I have in Luneta, a “Born-Again” pastor has the guts to engage me on this tautology about the existence of his god. Well…if you asked me personally, I’m getting sick and tired of the issue since even if it took us all night till morning on the squabble, there will still be no fruitful proof this pastor can show me. Anyway, in the length of our debate, the pastor told me that “faith” is required to confirm the existence of God.

Asked any Christian on the definition of “faith” and he will gladly state the verses found on Hebrew 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
They interpret this verse (just like always) that to have faith is confirmation on an invisible God.

Unfortunately, the word “faith” in this verse is more of a disproof on the existence of God and these unwilling clowns haven’t cared to notice it. Remember that the New Testament was written in Koine Greek. The word faith is translated as “pistis” which means “reliance” or “trust”. A guarantee of something hoped for ( Grk: elpizo – Expect and wish. Something you are wishing in the near future.) WHAT!!!!???? Wait a minute there? If God already exists, then why are you still hoping about it? You said that this god already exist and you firmly believe that this god is already here, watching me typing and defying its existence, if so, why are you sounding like you are still hoping that someday in the near future, this god might exist?

That’s what the problem with faith. The word justify that today this god concept doesn’t really exist and believers are still in the dark…hoping that someday this god might come into being. Now, if we use faith as a proof about god, then we are just telling the non-believers that “Hey there brother, my God doesn’t exist today but maybe tomorrow (and I’m hoping that this day will come true…*crossing his fingers and wishing on shooting stars.) That I will personally bring Him here and then both of you will debate about His existence.” Now isn’t that proof a baloney?

Now back on the debate. The pastor tried to retaliate by saying that God is so far away (Uhum…) and that they are “hoping” that he will come. HAHAHAHAHA! Now is that an excuse or what? Are we talking about a man in a red cape flying somewhere out there in the wide blue yonder? What happened with God is everywhere?

So I recommend to my Christian friends…never use “faith” in justifying your stand on the existence of your god concept. Remember, any person that tried to use faith as evidence on the existence of God has tacitly admitted that his god concept doesn’t exist.

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Sorry guys, I'm reconverting…


You can forward my message below to both believers and non-believers alike.

There are many kind hearted people, some are educated some aren’t, or they do not care they are living with rational people. Belief in a great many mysteries and things is good but now that I try to think about it, oftentimes I feel most enlightened overall. Of course to them (rationalists) I become foolish and irrational for believing and for being defensive of religion. When I began it (faith), it comes as revelations to me in matters of hopes concerning the true religion. We ask why believe it? Must you ask religion to not be at all special? Of course one must be very polite to likely impart a reason since, this is faith. Perhaps because non-believers think most believing people, of course including us Bible readers, were not well taught in logic, and that we indoctrinated and convinced as many innocent children we’d found. To believe and not ask any question about the matters of God, of our heavenly faith. You and I are brothers. Can’t religion triumph? Prevent it not. Myself included, we’re from this moment questioning not faith, my personal revelations, beliefs, nor God. Every moment is time well spent, I think, to reflect on God, on his mercy. My skepticism’s now past. Returning to religious status, my convictions have changed. I now solemnly arrive to serve at God’s feet. The one true conclusion is such that of mine. A loving, forgiving, personal, and merciful God the almighty, is certainly not absurd.

Or is it?

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