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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2012-11-01 05:31
Subject: [religion] If I were a theist
Security: Public
Tags:personal, religion
If I were a theist, I would want to believe in a deity who was better than me.

A deity who showed me how to love what I want to hate.

A deity who showed me the good in others, rather than reflecting my own fears in the faces of others.

A deity who expected me to see the world around me rather than denying it.

A deity who was above my prejudices and dislikes, and lifted me above them as well.

A deity who trusted me rather than testing me.

If I were a theist.

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jordan179
User: jordan179
Date: 2012-11-01 13:24 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I agree with you, which gets to the original reason I became an atheist: I didn't want to worship any god who did the things attributed to him in the Old Testament. The more intellectual reasons -- the contradictions implicit in omnipotence, omniscience and omnibenevolence; the Occam's Razor point that there's no reason to assume his existence -- all that came later. My basic reason was that I had learned growing up that genocide, especially insufficiently-motivated genocide, was the kind of thing the Bad Guys did, and I didn't want to side with a Bad Guy.
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2012-11-01 15:26 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword for me: "attributed." But boy, does that open a can of worms.
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jordan179
User: jordan179
Date: 2012-11-01 13:26 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
... and the obvious retcon that "Oh, that's just the God of the Old Testament, since Jesus came we've had a milder Covenant," didn't hold water for me. Not just because I was raised Jewish, but also because the degree of behavioral inconsistency implicit in that was hardly admirable. Yes, nations behave like this, but this is supposedly the same individual. Nor had he really repudiated his previous crimes, which implies that he might choose to do them again, the next time he had a millennia-long mood swing.
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2012-11-01 15:23 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Big fight in the early church over whether the Old Testament God is in fact the same God as Jesus' God. The church decided yes. (Which of course leaves us with your original problem.)
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a_cubed
User: a_cubed
Date: 2012-11-01 13:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Great. Now I've got "If I were a theist" running through my mind as an ear worm to the music of "If I were a rich man".
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2012-11-01 15:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Me too! Except I have to use a lot of "didle deedles" to make Jay's version fit.
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Jay Lake: signs-cemetery_recycling-center
User: jaylake
Date: 2012-11-01 14:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:signs-cemetery_recycling-center
And good for you sister. Sadly, that certainly isn't the God of Brand Christian in contemporary American politics and culture.
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2012-11-01 15:24 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yay for United Methodist ministers! (Oh wait, I is one.)
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2012-11-01 15:51 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
To the original post: I moved from agnostic to theist (Jesus-ist?) as a young adult, exactly because I began to understand God in this way. - Makes me sound flighty and ungrounded, when actually it felt exactly the opposite. Felt like finding something real to replace my incomplete childhood understanding.
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User: matt_doyle
Date: 2012-11-01 17:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Seconded. If I didn't believe in a God like this, I would not believe.
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User: mmegaera
Date: 2012-11-01 22:04 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Well, as I was told growing up, he is what he is whether you believe in him or not.

Saying you don't believe in God, I was told, is like saying you don't believe that you yourself exist.

Scary, huh?
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2012-11-01 22:07 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Saying you don't believe in God, I was told, is like saying you don't believe that you yourself exist.

Wow, does that fail the pink unicorn test hard. Nothing like self-reinforcing nonsense passing as logic.
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Max Kaehn: MAX ZEN
User: slothman
Date: 2012-11-02 00:14 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:MAX ZEN
Some of that matches up pretty well with what I’m learning in Zen, but deities are optional there...
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randy_smith2
User: randy_smith2
Date: 2012-11-02 23:07 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Actually, I am a theist and that pretty much describes the deity in whom I believe.
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