Is God all in the head?

by sleepy 16 Replies latest jw friends

  • singsongboi

    as a witness, i used to pray fervently -- sometimes for long periods.
    and i had certain emotional/spiritual feelings as a result...

    now, as a gay man i have the same feelings when having sex with my partner.... (wish it was for the same lengthy times). btw -- didn't happen that way with str8 sex.

    do you think my thalamus is too close to my temporal lobe??

  • sunscapes

    Hi sleepy!

    In fact it seems that many people experiencing epilectic seizures originating in that part of the brain (temporal lobes) can have intense, spiritual experiences and become preocupied with religious and moral issues.

    Well, here's the thing...the electromagnetic device you mentioned seems to me right on considering current metaphysical studies...

    Evolved? I would tend toward us being DEvolved over time, when it comes to matters about our using our natural psychic and remote viewing abilities. Whether we were seeded here extra-terrestrially or created directly or indirectly, etc., the fact remains that these extra-sensory perceptions exist, and tie in to our spiritual nature.
    Ever heard of Dr. Gary E. Schwartz's work?

    but for me "spiritual experiences" and "religious and moral issues" are quite separate and distinct. Humans who muddle these up often cause more trouble than good, IMHO.

    In fact, even religious issues and moral issues can be separate and distinct from each other, as well...

    Especially when the "religion" consists of organizational control group settings that force alignment of these to one's spirituality and morality. Then such regulated structure steam-rolls over one's own natural spiritual inclinations.

    Morality, as opposed to religiosity, flows NATURALLY from a true spiritual person. Christ taught this as essence of Christianity; as opposed to the established organizational control groups at the time, who were works- and numbers- based.

  • Hyghlandyr


    Fredhall said

    Like you all, God is a real person. I wander how would YOU feel if Jehovah believes you "all in the head?"
    My friend Robert has talked to God quite often. Robert has on many of these occasions tried to convince god that I exist. But god has told him that he simply does not have faith in me.

    Sleepy and others:

    I read a great disertation a while ago. It posited that there were essentially two groups of people in religious surroundings. Peak Experiencers, usually the founders of a religion. And non-peak experiences.

    Essentially it held the idea that there were certain emotional/spiritual aspects to religion. Experiences that the Peakers had, which they then tried to explain to the non-peakers. Do to the mystical nature of the experiences, non-peakers are not able to related to or understand these experiences, having never had them. Thus Peakers have throughout history used allegory and symbolism to assist those who just dont get it.

    Over time, the allegory, symbolism, and rituals, becomes important for the sake of itself. Because non-peakers, are not realizing that they are simply a step to something else. Peakers will understand that there is something behind all of the window dressing. An experience. Whatever that IT is, they get it. Those that don't simply, dont.

    Turls and I were talking in chat today, about this board and yahoo. Usually most of the people on yahoo 'get' me. Most of yall dont yet, but you will. When you do it will be a divine experience, believe me. And this paper suggested we all could have these sorts of divine experiences. That even atheists were entitled to use terms such as divine, prayer, sanctity, holy, and so on about things in their lives. That these terms did not have to be restricted to one group or another, or only believers.

    This now leads to something I have been thinking about for a long time. Christians will believe that what I am about to say is merely proof that god exists and is trying to reach me, or trying to get me to reach him. Atheists, might think I am loonie. But most simply wont 'get' it. A wild Irish person would. Not even all Irish would, certainly not those trying to be a part of polite society.

    I am an unbeliever. I have un-believed things I used to believe. I was pentacostal before and had great numbers of Peak-experiences. When I was a witness I had a lot of peak experiences. Now that I am amoral, calculated, cynical, downright wicked, and all the other things that some of you spout about me and that I spout about myself, I still have peak experiences.

    Sometimes these are of god. Sometimes of other worlds. No I am not speaking of visions here. I am however speaking of an overal reality. You believe what you see touch and smell, etc. I also do. I am able to see and touch and smell whatever I choose, whenever I choose. I can feel myself eating a slice of cheesecake right at this moment. Oh yeah:)

    But, harkening back to my christian days, there are times, sometimes an entire day, a few hours, or a couple of minutes, when I am absolutely a person of faith. I simply believe in god at those moments, christ, the apostles, ressurection, and so on.

    I am not deluding myself, because I know what instances bring on those moments. When I am listening to a person of faith, who is simply relating, honestly, their experiences and their sincere belief in those, without any expectation that I should convert. When I am singing songs of faith. Jehovah Jireh, My provida, his grace is good enough for me!...Or when I am simply empathizing with someone, whose life may be similar to mine, or vastly different.

    When I have my moments of clarity, that is to say when I lack faith, I know that it is simply something in my brain. When I am having those moments, rare, of faith, I know it is god. I also know at those moments that eventually, probably within a few minutes, I will cease believing. But I do not object either believing, or not believing. In any state I find myself in, I am usually fairly content.


    NO. Years ago people were considered possessed by the devil when they had a seizure. People did not understand it was a medical condition.
    Thank you! And thank you for all of your posts, and the highly detailed information about seizures. My younger sister fell at a track meet of mine when she was seven and had epilepsy. The drugs of course were very difficult for her to bear causing a lot of mood swings, and grumpiness, among other things, until they settled her on something more beneficial.

    And whether it is epilepsy, or religion... We do not have to think of it as a brain disorder. Many people, perhaps most? Simply believe because that is what they were taught. And if there is anything to this temporal lobe or peak experiencers thing, and few are experiencing such, then it is most likely that most are just going along with the program. In any case, even if it is a temporal lobe magnetic box device thingy that causes people to believe in god, so what? Are orgasms also a brain disorder?


    If we Irish keep mixing with you Adamites, then we will most certainly devolve. <wink> (is that clue enough for osmet that that is a joke? (really it isnt a joke, you adamites need to get off our planet)) (I mean it) (now) (I told you it wasnt a joke GO) (Oh for goodness sake! Are you still on my planet!?) (Listen BUCKO, I said this planet is not for the adamites, now go!)


  • rhett

    Hi Puffs,
    I'm sorry if you thought my comments about the mental health of religous followers were meant to be a joke about people with epilepsy. Nothing could be further from the truth. Different people have different things wrong with them physically and I totally understand that. My apologies if I offended you in any way as my comments were not about epilepsy at all.
    My comments were a joke about how religous feelings could be caused by activity in a certain area of the brain that I'm assuming is responsible for more things than just epileptic seizures. If I've offended anyone by suggesting that overly religous people may be slightly crazy which would explain their religous leanings, well, go talk to a nice counselor about it. Hopefully while you're there you'll talk about a few other things while you're at it.

  • sleepy

    Hi Puffs rule

    My brother also has epilepsy.

    "The issues of having an ephiphany afterward to make someone more religious is a crock of bull. Perhaps people who already have a belief in God will have a stronger faith, however, I do not think having a seizure disorder makes one happy. It sucks. Your life is turned upside down by the meds, the lack of understanding and the discrimination"

    I think the point was slightly missed.Its not that people with epilepsy will have more or greater experiences of god but that if a certain part of the temporal lobe in any person is stimulated (which can happen also in certain people with cetain types of epilepsy), they have under scientific test been known to experience "God" and religious euphoria.(As well as hightened sensory perception)

    So this points to a part of the brain being directly involved with forms of religious beliefs and feelings.
    What is amazing is that it was/is believed that religious belief is constructed by man , not related to a specific brain function.

    On the lines of Hyghlandyr, I think it is possible that some people have a higher level of religious fervour than others.
    Which , if you havent got it you carnt relate too.
    This could be due to increased activity in the temporal lobes.
    Some of us have less or none at all.

    But what causes this activity?

  • Satanus

    I may be checking out ramachandran and schwartz.

    Some people who experiment w alternate brain states see the brain as a valve that controls how much or which parts of reality are let into perception. If so, then drugs, electrical stimulation, or damage could result in greater or lessened inflow of realities from this dimension or other dimensions. I suppose there could be warped perceptions and false ones as well.


  • teenyuck

    Rhett, sleepy, Hyghlandyr...

    Sorry if I misunderstood. I think I took too many pills on Friday night!

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