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View Diary: Is the World Ready for a God-Embracing Atheist? (172 comments)

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  •  That seems impossible (0+ / 0-)

    because a prerequisite to believing in a god is to at least have thought of it before or heard of it.  Even if you were the most knowledgable world-wise traveller, you're still not going to be aware of every single culture there has ever been on Earth and every single god they ever proposed.

    At most you can only believe in every god you've heard of.  You can't possibly believe in gods you don't even have any conscious thought of, and the set "every god that has ever been worshipped" is definitely going to include a lot of gods you've never heard of.

    •  Why should that be a prerequisite? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      leftyparent

      A tenet of this syncretic religion is there are no false gods.  You can believe that, and that everything ever worshipped as a god in human history is a true god, without necessarily knowing who all of those gods are/were.

      What you can't do is worship a god you've never heard of, but that doesn't seem to be a necessary part of it.

      •  To believe a thing exists (0+ / 0-)

        you have to have heard of that thing.  Doesn't matter whether it's a god or a bicycle or a dinosaur.  First you have to know what the concept even IS before you can say you believe in it.

        Otherwise you might as well be saying:
         "I believe in all Grokzifins"
         "Uh. what's a Grokzifin?"
         "It's a word I just made up.  For now it will be a generic placeholder for all the things anyone in the world might label a Grokzifin."
          "So you're saying you believe in all of them even though you don't know what all of them are?"
          "yeah.  As long as they use that word, I believe in it."

        It's not just logically impossible, it's bad semantics.

    •  One could view every "god" as a metaphor... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Batya the Toon

      for a deeper level that is truly unknowable that we attempt to model awkwardly with our anthropomorphized figures.  One could accept that all these metaphors are glimpses from different POVs of that deeper level that defies full understanding.

      Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

      by leftyparent on Tue Mar 19, 2013 at 08:17:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  In other words, you don't actually (0+ / 0-)

        believe in them.  You just believe that other people believe in them.

        No wonder you're a fan of Karen Armstrong.  This deliberate obfuscation is her bread and butter.

        •  You're right I don't "believe" I "accept"... (0+ / 0-)

          that they place a deity in their overarching story of life, the universe and everything.  Their take on that deeper level that none of us can (or at least not been able) to define.

          Steven... I think you and I just need to agree to disagree.  I sense your passion for your position and you kind of push my buttons to defend mine, which does not really move dialog forward!

          You talk about me "pretending" and Armstrong "deliberately obfuscating" like we have some hidden agenda beyond being perhaps just naive or deluded.  Can you reveal more about our hidden agenda?

          Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

          by leftyparent on Wed Mar 20, 2013 at 07:29:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Your agenda is to pretend there is less (0+ / 0-)

            disagreement than there actually is by pretending that statements religious people make in earnest are simply metaphorical (a metaphor for WHAT exactly?) when clearly they are not.  For them to be purely metaphorical that would have to mean the people claiming to believe in them know that they're not really true and are just stories to illustrate some point.  This does not describe the mindset of a religious person at ALL.

            If a person claims that Jesus didn't really do all that stuff in the bible and that prayers aren't really answered by an actual god, but that instead these things are just metaphors then that person would basically be an atheist who refuses to admit it.

            And when Armstrong pretends this is what religious people are doing, she's lying.

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