To those that believe in a god; Please help me believe

by AlmostAtheist 83 Replies latest jw friends

  • Undecided

    Hi Almost,

    I,m in the same place you are in my quest to find God. After giving up the JW faith I got on my knees and prayed and cried for God to show me the truth of life. So far I haven't found anything but questions. Answers are just the same old expierences of others feeling some inner emotion that convinced them it was a real being they were communicating with.

    My real question is why are we here along with all other forms of life, when everything alive dies in a few years. And why all the things to make life so much a struggle, viruses, bacteria, cancer, mental disorders, natural disasters etc. It seems as if God didn't do a good job or he likes suffering of all creatures, not just humans. Why all the many galaxies in space?

    I've come to the point where I don't like to think about it anymore, it's driving me crazy.

    Ken P.

  • Kenneson

    Why should anyone prefer evolution? If everything has evolved to what it is, than everything is as it should be. So why do we whine and cry when disasters and suffering and death occur? Doesn't evolution equal fate? And why should we do anything to try to change what is? What is it that prevents us from sitting idly by and doing nothing? What motivates us to reach out and help those who are suffering? Does it change anything anyway? What's the point? Why are we compassionate when (reality), (nature), (the universe) isn't? Why does shit happen?

  • groovycat.


    Yes, for an infinite period of time before conception and for an infinite period of time after death, you don?t exist (depending on your belief), so what is the point in this 70 years (or so) break. Paradoxically, being that there is infinitum before and after, it?s as if we have never existed.

    And yes, why the stellar bodies, far enough away to have no influence over the earth, it?s trajectories or to even be able to see them. Why are they there? There must be a reason ? mustn?t there?

    Well, ironically, it is probably this method of thought that got us here in the first place. There are endless questions to be asked in an attempt to qualify our beliefs, and most of them unanswerable. There were probably many (relatively) learned men pondered in this manner in the early days of civilisation, and in the absence of logical explanation, attributed what they queried to something now referred to as god.

  • Tashawaa

    Almost - I'm not here to convince you of "God", but to share my personal thoughts, which unfortunately somewhat conflict between what I "hope" and what I believe to be "true".

    I'm also agnostic. If I were to look for "God", the Christian God would be the last one in line. The God described in the bible goes against every grain in me of what I would imagine the creator to be. The bible (IMO) is just man's attempt to explain "God" and control humans. Like any other religion. For me, religion fails miserably at any level of drawing people to God. It serves some purposes, though, and I don't judge those that need religion to structure their spirituality.

    For me, the "creator" is simply the life-force in us. The life-force that grows a seed to a tree, a baby, animals, etc. I don't know whether this force has personality, or is just a power that has always existed in the universe. Its this unknown aspect of life that I feel motivates humans to worship and attempt to define the source of life.

    I also believe in evolution.

    There are some on this board that are very spiritual - James Thomas always strikes a cord in me when he posts. If "God" exists, then I believe things are exactly the way they are suppose to be. I don't believe the Creator made mistakes (eg. allowing imperfection to arise in humans that we need "saving" from). I also don't believe the Creator discriminates between indivduals of different faiths (Muslims are right, Christians are wrong).

    The major part of me believes death is the end... but a small part of me hopes that we "recycle". That with any natural cycle (water, air, etc) that our life-force continues on.

    I've accepted that none of us "know". We find a "comfort zone" of beliefs to aid us through this life. I find spirituality in human nature (by-and-large). The disaster in S. East Asia is horrendous, yet to see the human compassion and love expressed by those that give aid to the survivors is a source of comfort to me. To see humans assist one another. In your example of a neighbor slitting your throat, you may be able to call 911, and have medical attention, or if you died, a justice system would work on punishing your killer. All humans. All human spirit and justice and compassion.

  • LittleToe

    I don't believe it's possible for a human being to convince another on this subject, so I'm not even going to attempt to cause offense by offering any such thing.

    I will offer an observation/belief of my own, though:

    I think mankind was made "Lord" of this planet, and isn't doing a particularly good job.
    For some, when they abducate their "Lordship" to "God", He sometimes steps in and helps.
    I honestly don't know the mechanics of why/how/when that is, but I do believe that I've personally experienced it and see that others claim something similar...

  • Sunchild


    Considering all the things I've seen and felt in my life that I now know were not what I thought they were, I just don't trust personal experience. My own, much less anyone else's. This seems to fall into the "I feel Jesus in my heart" category. I'm glad it works for you, but it isn't something that could convince someone else.

    Oddly enough, what you've just said is exactly what I was telling you: I don't believe that any human being can convince another human being that God exists. I told you what did it for me, but I knew that it wouldn't mean much to you.

    It all comes down to one moment (or a series of moments) where, somehow, God convinces you; but it has to start inside yourself. If you're scared to trust your own perceptions, it's impossible to believe in God in any meaningful way.


  • czarofmischief
    or so I'm told. If I ever meet one, I'll ask him

    LOL! Let me know when you find him. I have a business proposition for him...

    Let me try to see what we can agree on before we shake hands and part. So we at least both agree that death is inevitable. It is part of the way we are made.

    But "painful, agonizing deaths" are simply not a necessary part of it.

    Fair enough. You know what Christian theology teaches about the nature of suffering, why it exists, why it is permitted. C.S. Lewis wrote a whole book on "The Problem of Pain." There isn't really a whole lot I can add to it.

    I can't buy the "we learn on the earth what we use later in heaven" argument since so many never get to learn anything

    Well maybe there is an assumption there about what the immortal soul recalls, remembers, learns to use. It may be more than we suspect.

    If heavenly rewards seem a bit too much, well, a lot of souls that live around the sick one learn to love a little bit more, feel a little bit more compassion, strive a little bit harder to find a cure, etc. I'm not being callous, I'm just pointing out that there positive outcomes to even the most horrible situations. And if we learn from our mistakes, we can prevent future suffering among ourselves.

    But there are lines that God himself should be able to draw between right and wrong without impinging on free-will.

    How would he draw them? How would he enforce them? How would he "stop" anybody? How would people be informed of the rules? Remember, according to Christian doctrine, the suffering of this life is only temporary, and the bad people are not permitted into the next life; ergo they must be a given a chance to prove themselves wicked in this life - because on what grounds could they be denied entry into Heaven except on the bad behavior they had exhibited when they had the chance?

    If you knew I was going to bash in somebody's skull with a bat because I want to see how it feels, you'd stop me.

    If I thought you were serious. If I had the power. But even the police can't do much about a threat. People have the inherent right to talk, even threateningly - and terroristic threats won't get you much jail time. Not nearly enough to protect your victim, assuming you were serious. Unless you want God to restrict free speech as well?

    IF the solution to crime is more power, ala "Minority Report" - well, just think about that. People today cannot be trusted with the power that they do have, if you gave the power to read minds, teleport, or cause earthquakes - you would immediately see wars that would tear the very fabric of the universe apart. From Cain brutally bludgeoning defenseless Abel on down to Uday and Qusay torturing the soccer team that failed them - mankind has utterly failed to control his violent impulses. The answer is not that man is powerless to control his neighbor. He is powerless to control himself.

    This reminds me of Jesus and the rich young ruler, who asked him, "How can I be saved." Jesus answered that he had the Law and the Prophets - and the ruler could sense that it wasn't enough. He was aware of his own connection to God - the need to somehow do more to "prove" that God was real. So Jesus then commanded a leap of faith - sell off everything, give it all away, and then be Jesus' follower.

    Maybe, just maybe, you might benefit from a leap of faith of some sort? Only God can prove Himself to you, as Littletoe said. I could gibber on this board all day - but never prove a single thing to you. You may very well know what a "leap of faith" in your own life could entail. Where do you think God wants you to go? To do? To be? Try leaping in that direction and see what happens.

    If the traditional religon isn't filling your spiritual need, then you must go and get it filled elsewhere.


  • logansrun

    Occam's Razor. Apply.


  • LittleToe

    Unfortunately, whilst it's an excellent tool, it doesn't always apply - it's not infallable...

  • logansrun

    Little Toe,

    I never said Occam's Razor was infallible. Nonetheless, in my experience the vast majority of people do not apply it at all. Most people, I dare say, are completely unfamiliar with the concept!

    To make the leap from seeing a baby behave in a similar fashion to one's mother (a very subjective report of experience I might add) to believing -- no, knowing! -- there is a God seems incredibly dubious and is blatently illogical. That's okay, I guess. Believe if you want. But don't offer that example as anything more than a very wild speculation.

    Humans are constructivist animals when it comes to their mental processes. We are pattern-building creatures by nature. To top it off we also have a tendency to believe what we want to believe -- and pattern our "knowings" according to our desires more than our elemental experiences -- experiences which are interpreted to fit our desires, of course. Unfortunately, this often gets us into trouble.


Share this