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Blueogre2

The True Meaning of Life

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I think if one actually tried to live on the streets for awhile, no matter how benign the climate, one would find it a horrible experience. One is subject to crime, harassment, the inability to get clean, undesirable food, all sorts of discomforts (insects, rocks for pillows, etc.), rain, loneliness and isolation, and the absence of a million little comforts we take for granted.

Last time I was homeless I camped, but I been camping all my life. When my dad took us on vacation we never rarely stayed in a hotel even when the weather got adverse. When my wife and I became homeless, I got away from the city and just lived in my tent. We did it for a year. My wife loved it. I had a hard time convincing her we needed to get a home when she got pregnant. I still go camping in my van but I couldn't do it all the time anymore. My health is not as good as it was.

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I have done so. I can see touch, hear, speak to, feel etc. god, just as I can my wife or dog. God leaves the same physical traces of hs interaction with the environment he engages in, as does my wife or dog. When god pushes me out of the way of a bus, it leaves bruises on my skin.

Personally I have as much and the same objective physical evidences for the existence of god as I do for any entity; like my wife or dog or house. One cant walk through a manifestation of god any more than one can walk through a solid brick wall.

Your idea of evidence obviously differs from mine,My idea of evidence is something that can be shown and demonstrated, not flights of the imagination

fullywired

Edited by fullywired

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Greetings forum. Today I had a random thought that I felt was good enough to write down and share. Many people have commented on the meaning of life, most of whom are far more qualified then I am to discuss such things, but nevertheless I felt I could throw my two cents in anyway. The real reason for living is not money, or pleasure, or even to serve other people. Neither is it found in devoting oneself to a god. No, the true meaning is in letting go of ones own humanity. Allow me to explain. Everything that has every been put forward as the goal of life is actually quite mundane when examined closely. Money is nice, but it won't satisfy all your needs. Pleasure is nice but it ultimately causes you to become intoxicated and lose sight of the big picture. Serving others is nice but in the end you will find that most people are not worth the effort. Devoting yourself to a religion is nice, but it can cause you to become disconected from reality. But what is truly good? Setting your sights on greater things beyond the limits of the human condition. Attempting to evolve into a higher state of being. How is this to be done? I myself do not know, but it seems to me that it would be worth investigating. But enough about my thoughts I want to know what others think

Not sure religion can be said to lead those who follow one, to lose touch with reality. It is like those nimrods who like to say believers are crazy or deluded....how would they know? People pretty much do the best they can, though usuallyi it is not too good. Of course I don't know what reality is in the first place......the purpose of life is to exist for as long as you can, reproduce and have the good sense to die before becoming a burden to everyone.....after saying that....I still want to live to be 150 years of age.

doug

Edited by dougeaton

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I really don't think there is an actual meaning to life, just life.

Edited by ancient astronaut
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Your idea of evidence obviously differs from mine,My idea of evidence is something that can be shown and demonstrated, not flights of the imagination

fullywired

This was my original comment

"There is as much individual objective evidence for the existence of god as for most things. I know, objectively, god exists in precisely the same way I know every object exists ie i have or take an objective view on gods existence i may alos take a subjective view as i could with any person or thing"

Note the bolded bits. You asked me to share this evidence with you. I did so by describing it to you. The evidences are perfectly clear and exaclt the same as the evidences for every thing inmy life

BUT your fall back position as usual is

not flights of the imagination.

In other words you chose to disbelieve me (which is your prerogative) despite me doing exactly as you asked.

Just because evidences are not transferrable, does NOT make them any the less evidences.

I can't walk through a brick wall but I cant prove that to you. I cant walk through an angel either, and i cant prove that to you either. None the less, the brick wall and the angel offer the same convincing evidentiary proof of their solidity.

If my wife pushes me hard enough, it leaves a bruise. If god/an angel pushes me hard enough, it leaves a bruise. Same evidentiary proofs of the reality and solidity of wife and god/angel.

All I can suggest is tha tnext time you encounter god r an angel YOU try walking through it and se what happens. If you can, then it was probably an hallucination. If you get a bruise and possibly a blood nose then it probably was real and had independent existence. That's EVIDENCE.

Edited by Mr Walker

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I really don't think there is an actual meaning to life, just life.

So you exist. Why?

Oh, that's right, you don't think there is an actual meaning to life.

So you exist. Why? Habit?

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Perhaps this will help, for some. It is on online book free to read. I am quite sure there are some here that as usual will have something negative to say about it.

http://archive.org/stream/The-Real-New-Testament-The-Talmud-of-Jmmanuel-Person-Known-Nowadays-as-Jesus-For/The-Real-New-Testament-The-Talmud-of-Jmmanuel-Person-Known-Nowadays-as-Jesus-Forgery-in-Christianity#page/n0/mode/2up

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This was my original comment

"There is as much individual objective evidence for the existence of god as for most things. I know, objectively, god exists in precisely the same way I know every object exists ie i have or take an objective view on gods existence i may alos take a subjective view as i could with any person or thing"

Note the bolded bits. You asked me to share this evidence with you. I did so by describing it to you. The evidences are perfectly clear and exaclt the same as the evidences for every thing inmy life

BUT your fall back position as usual is

not flights of the imagination.

In other words you chose to disbelieve me (which is your prerogative) despite me doing exactly as you asked.

Just because evidences are not transferrable, does NOT make them any the less evidences.

I can't walk through a brick wall but I cant prove that to you. I cant walk through an angel either, and i cant prove that to you either. None the less, the brick wall and the angel offer the same convincing evidentiary proof of their solidity.

If my wife pushes me hard enough, it leaves a bruise. If god/an angel pushes me hard enough, it leaves a bruise. Same evidentiary proofs of the reality and solidity of wife and god/angel.

All I can suggest is tha tnext time you encounter god r an angel YOU try walking through it and se what happens. If you can, then it was probably an hallucination. If you get a bruise and possibly a blood nose then it probably was real and had independent existence. That's EVIDENCE.

I have been down this road before with you , you never provide evidence ,you always fall back on telling us what you believe,what you believe is not in question,

that is faith and we know what Mark Twain said about that Faith is believing what you know ain't so. Why you insist on bringing brick walls into it I don't know,,I don't require evidence of their solidity nor evidence that when your wife pushes you, you bruise these are things that are self evident but at least you spared us the platypus .Your right, my fall back position is "no flights of the imagination" because you do strain the bounds of credibility at times

fullywired

Edited by fullywired

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I have been down this road before with you , you never provide evidence ,you always fall back on telling us what you believe,what you believe is not in question,

that is faith and we know what Mark Twain said about that Faith is believing what you know ain't so. Why you insist on bringing brick walls into it I don't know,,I don't require evidence of their solidity nor evidence that when your wife pushes you, you bruise these are things that are self evident but at least you spared us the platypus .Your right, my fall back position is "no flights of the imagination" because you do strain the bounds of credibility at times

fullywired

It isnt faith to know I am alive. It is not faith to know I can't walk through a wall, or fly in physical form.

It is not faith to know my dog or my wife are real.(i reject descartian philosophy as mistaken)

AND IT IS NOT FAITH to acknowledge the physical presence of real powerful and sapient entities around us, which humans traditionally define as god, or in christian terms, angels.

Faith is only required where one does not know and have adequate factual physical evidences TO know.

For example YOU would require faith to acknowledge god. I have no choice in the matter and so it isn't belief or faith, any more than the knowledge that my wife and dog have independent physical existence is belief or faith. How do you know you can't walk through a brick wall ? By faith or by tested knolwledge?

Well, I know the nature of gods and angels via exactly the same tested knowledge. I DO continue to test the solidity of brick walls and my ability to fly. I do continue to test the physical reality and existence of god angels and other things. I take Nothing on faith, not even that I cannot walk through a wall or fly, just because someone tells me it is impossible, and certainly not the existence/non existence of god angels etc.

The platypus is directly relevant. It had solid physical existence and aboriginal people were well aware of its existence, yet european experts of the time refused to believe in its existence, even when confronted with carcases Their disbelief overrode the reality.

In their experience the characteristics and taxonomy of the platypus were not just unknown but impossible You are in the position of a European expert of the time i am the indigenous austrlain. I know the platypus exists (And it does) but i can't prove it to you from where i am. In part because of your state of mind, in part because of the practical difficulties of doing so. (When confronted with the carcase of a paltypus, the expert conclusion was that it had to be a fake, because obviously such an animal could not possibly exist in real life.)

It not only strained, but totally exceeded, their "bounds of credibilty", and yet it existed.

Ps i am not familar with twains precise quote but it is wrong.

Faith can only exist in the absence of knowledge. No rational man can hold a faith where they also accept knowledge. So once you KNOW, faith is impossible to a logicla rational being. To know in ones mind one thing, but to believe another contradictory thing is impossible to a sane and functioning sapient being.

Edited by Mr Walker

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I agree with most of this except the bit I bolded There is as much individual objective evidence for the existence of god as for most things. I know, objectively, god exists in precisely the same way I know every object exists ie i have or take an objective view on gods existence i may alos take a subjective view as i could with any person or thing.

And the last bit is also wrong inmy opinion although it is certainly an opinion. Every human employs psychological props to survive the self -aware state in which we exist it might be; self denial, irony, or simply not thinking about death or the future. It might be materialism, hedonism altruism or any other ism.

But a sense of the human spirit, and even a codification of that human sprit into group religions, is not a prop or a sign of weakness; it is an evolved coping mechanism which works, is useful, and for many may allow them to live rather than commit suicide or live a life of depression, at the ultimate pointlessness of life. So, real god or god construct, the connection of god and man is much more positive than you describe

MW, Can you expand on the bolded please. What do you mean by self aware, How are you defining self aware? Or are you applying an established psychological theory, if so which one? Just seeking clarity. Thank you.

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I live in Florida, shelter is a hammock and a couple of trees. zzzz.....

Lucky.

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MW, Can you expand on the bolded please. What do you mean by self aware, How are you defining self aware? Or are you applying an established psychological theory, if so which one? Just seeking clarity. Thank you.

Not a specific psychological theory but a general psychological point of view.

it requires a certain level of sapient self awreness to, for example, know that we are mortal and hold that knowledge as a conceptual reaility within our minds

The knowledge of our inevitable death creates tensions in any human mind between conflicting needs and desires, and so we also invent /create mental constructs to reduce or eliminate that tension. One such prop is the belief that we might, perhaps, live forever, in one way or another.

In a totally different area, we know when we do wrong. We sometimes know it is wrong yet we continue to do wrong. ANd so our mind creates constructs which, through different mechanisms help us to get around that guilt eg justification, denial or confession and ritualised forgiveness.

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It isnt faith to know I am alive. It is not faith to know I can't walk through a wall, or fly in physical form.

It is not faith to know my dog or my wife are real.(i reject descartian philosophy as mistaken)

AND IT IS NOT FAITH to acknowledge the physical presence of real powerful and sapient entities around us, which humans traditionally define as god, or in christian terms, angels.

Faith is only required where one does not know and have adequate factual physical evidences TO know.

For example YOU would require faith to acknowledge god. I have no choice in the matter and so it isn't belief or faith, any more than the knowledge that my wife and dog have independent physical existence is belief or faith. How do you know you can't walk through a brick wall ? By faith or by tested knolwledge?

Well, I know the nature of gods and angels via exactly the same tested knowledge. I DO continue to test the solidity of brick walls and my ability to fly. I do continue to test the physical reality and existence of god angels and other things. I take Nothing on faith, not even that I cannot walk through a wall or fly, just because someone tells me it is impossible, and certainly not the existence/non existence of god angels etc.

The platypus is directly relevant. It had solid physical existence and aboriginal people were well aware of its existence, yet european experts of the time refused to believe in its existence, even when confronted with carcases Their disbelief overrode the reality.

In their experience the characteristics and taxonomy of the platypus were not just unknown but impossible You are in the position of a European expert of the time i am the indigenous austrlain. I know the platypus exists (And it does) but i can't prove it to you from where i am. In part because of your state of mind, in part because of the practical difficulties of doing so. (When confronted with the carcase of a paltypus, the expert conclusion was that it had to be a fake, because obviously such an animal could not possibly exist in real life.)

It not only strained, but totally exceeded, their "bounds of credibilty", and yet it existed.

Ps i am not familar with twains precise quote but it is wrong.

Faith can only exist in the absence of knowledge. No rational man can hold a faith where they also accept knowledge. So once you KNOW, faith is impossible to a logicla rational being. To know in ones mind one thing, but to believe another contradictory thing is impossible to a sane and functioning sapient being.

A nice ramble full of irrelevant statements( brick walls your wife etc) but still you don't provide any evidence lets get back on topic remember this bit " There is as much individual objective evidence for the existence of god as for most things." Please share this evidence with us

fullywired.

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Not a specific psychological theory but a general psychological point of view.

it requires a certain level of sapient self awreness to, for example, know that we are mortal and hold that knowledge as a conceptual reaility within our minds

The knowledge of our inevitable death creates tensions in any human mind between conflicting needs and desires, and so we also invent /create mental constructs to reduce or eliminate that tension. One such prop is the belief that we might, perhaps, live forever, in one way or another.

In a totally different area, we know when we do wrong. We sometimes know it is wrong yet we continue to do wrong. ANd so our mind creates constructs which, through different mechanisms help us to get around that guilt eg justification, denial or confession and ritualised forgiveness.

Oh, I see what you are saying, one can rely on schema's that deny ones eventual death. I'd say that is accurate, but I'd add that one can use the shema of facing the reality of death without denial/projections too.

I defintely observe that some 'constructs" think they are teaching self accountability and self responsibility when they really just teach the use of guilt as a method of self correction. The problem with this method is one only feels bad for a denoted amount of time and never addresses the mistake and how to correct it. For me-- and what I teach my kids is to explore the mistake(s) and think/discuss ways to correct/fix them so they are not repeated. Period.

Edited by Sherapy
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A nice ramble full of irrelevant statements( brick walls your wife etc) but still you don't provide any evidence lets get back on topic remember this bit " There is as much individual objective evidence for the existence of god as for most things." Please share this evidence with us

fullywired.

See the bolded bit. I have shared with you the individual objective evidences by which i ascertain the existence of an independently existing, real and powerful entity humans call god.

They are PRECISELY the same evidences by which i ascertain the objective independent existence of all things in my world.

Why treat the reality of god any differently to that of a dog, for example? How do i know a dog exists? By using the same individual objective evidences as i apply to know god exists.

Touch, sound, shared vision, solidity, abilty to interact with and alter the rest of our objective reality, and behavioural characteristics. Plus, referring my observations to a standard categorisation, or set of parameters, by which god is defined. Just as i do with a dog.

You chose not to believe me.

Now I will ask you. If you met an angel (or indeed a dog) alone on a dark night, or in a crowded hospital, what individual objective evidences would YOU use to ascertain its objective independent existence or lack thereof, in order just to satisfy your own mind.

Further, having established its physicality, what logical/shared taxonomic categorisations would you use to attach an appropriate label to such an entity??

Edited by Mr Walker

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Frank Merton

It occurs to me that maybe one of the reasons for religion is not so much fear of death as fear of being meaningless.

And Joseph Campbell once remarked (in a famous interview with Bill Moyers, first session)

People say that what we're all seeking is a meaning for life. 1 don't think that's what we're really seeking. I think that what we're seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.

Campbell also quoted Jung (and I am unsure that it really is a literal quote; Jung expressed parallel thoughts and would agree with the sentence attributed to him, I think, but I cannot actually find where he said quite this)

Religion is a defense against the experience of God.

When you consider what Jung meant by "God,"

It is an apt name given to all overpowering emotions in my own psychical system subduing my conscious will and usurping control over myself. This is the name by which I designate all things which cross my willful path violently and recklessly, all things which upset my subjective views, plans, and intentions and change the course of my life for better or worse.

it seems to me that the experience of Jung's God is very much Campbell's "rapture of being alive." I conjecture, then, that people who have the experience of living as they ought to be living don't much worry about the meaning of it.

Sheri and Mr W

The knowledge of our inevitable death creates tensions in any human mind between conflicting needs and desires, and so we also invent /create mental constructs to reduce or eliminate that tension. One such prop is the belief that we might, perhaps, live forever, in one way or another.

As the remarks from Campbell and Jung illustrate, not all constructs for dealing with tensions are created equal.

Perhaps we do live forever, I wouldn't know. I do know we die, and that death is the end of some personal participation in this world. The unknown is whether it is also the end of all personal participation in any world. The possibility is not a construct, but fantasies about what it might be like afterwards are constructs.

The possibility that there is more to life than this life has little, if any, usefulness in helping to discern a "true meaning of life."

There is a line in the movie Gladiator, part of a "St Crispin's Day" speech given by Maximus, and a line which I believe his boss, Marcus Aurelius, would approve of,

What we do in life echoes through eternity.

Maximus presents that as an assertion of fact. I think there is something to it. Compare Campbell's "that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality."

I suspect if that, or something like that, were part of someone's internal compass, then the "meaning" of life would sort itself out. What do you want echoing through eternity? Do it.

Edited by eight bits
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Frank Merton

And Joseph Campbell once remarked (in a famous interview with Bill Moyers, first session)

People say that what we're all seeking is a meaning for life. 1 don't think that's what we're really seeking. I think that what we're seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.

Campbell also quoted Jung (and I am unsure that it really is a literal quote; Jung expressed parallel thoughts and would agree with the sentence attributed to him, I think, but I cannot actually find where he said quite this)

Religion is a defense against the experience of God.

When you consider what Jung meant by "God,"

It is an apt name given to all overpowering emotions in my own psychical system subduing my conscious will and usurping control over myself. This is the name by which I designate all things which cross my willful path violently and recklessly, all things which upset my subjective views, plans, and intentions and change the course of my life for better or worse.

it seems to me that the experience of Jung's God is very much Campbell's "rapture of being alive." I conjecture, then, that people who have the experience of living as they ought to be living don't much worry about the meaning of it.

Sheri and Mr W

As the remarks from Campbell and Jung illustrate, not all constructs for dealing with tensions are created equal.

Perhaps we do live forever, I wouldn't know. I do know we die, and that death is the end of some personal participation in this world. The unknown is whether it is also the end of all personal participation in any world. The possibility is not a construct, but fantasies about what it might be like afterwards are constructs.

The possibility that there is more to life than this life has little, if any, usefulness in helping to discern a "true meaning of life."

There is a line in the movie Gladiator, part of a "St Crispin's Day" speech given by Maximus, and a line which I believe his boss, Marcus Aurelius, would approve of,

What we do in life echoes through eternity.

Maximus presents that as an assertion of fact. I think there is something to it. Compare Campbell's "that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality."

I suspect if that, or something like that, were part of someone's internal compass, then the "meaning" of life would sort itself out. What do you want echoing through eternity? Do it.

As a teacher, and a human being i know well that what I do echoes through eternity. If i was a parent I would feel this in a different and more personal way.

I dont chose to believe in life after death although i know our consciousness is preserved within the cosmic consciousness, but we may not be self aware of this.

Any way, the point is that both realities such as the results of our physical deeds in life; and our beliefs which may shape those physical deeds reshape the world which comes after us, as well as the world in which we exist today.

We are all shapers of our world. So i know hundreds of people are alive today because of me who would not otherwise be. Thousands are better off, educated, healthier and with productive work. Manyy animals and the environment are improved by my actions and words.

My influence comes in two areas. In my work as a teacher, counsellor and mentor to young people, and via the distribution of close to a million dollars in aid to individuals and communities around the world, over 40 years, to improve food supply, education, sanitation, health etc. There are also the twenty or so young and elderly people we have personally cared for, supported and fostered in our home, over those forty years, and continue to do so

I know that my teachings, words and deeds, have inspired and motivated very many people. Lots of them have come up to me and told me so, including some who actually said, "your teaching changed my life around and set me on a much better path. " At least one has told me that the support and love of my wife and I, was all that stopped him commiting suicide.

This is a great responsibilty and a privilege. It is also easy to do great harm and to fail those for whom you are a teacher or a carer.

We are shaped equally(in my experience) by external experiences, and by the internal experiences we create for ourselves.

Thus, two people can have an identical external experience, but their internal reactions, understandings, conclusions etc., can cause very different changes within each one.

Edited by Mr Walker

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See the bolded bit. I have shared with you the individual objective evidences by which i ascertain the existence of an independently existing, real and powerful entity humans call god.

They are PRECISELY the same evidences by which i ascertain the objective independent existence of all things in my world.

Why treat the reality of god any differently to that of a dog, for example? How do i know a dog exists? By using the same individual objective evidences as i apply to know god exists.

Touch, sound, shared vision, solidity, abilty to interact with and alter the rest of our objective reality, and behavioural characteristics. Plus, referring my observations to a standard categorisation, or set of parameters, by which god is defined. Just as i do with a dog.

You chose not to believe me.

Now I will ask you. If you met an angel (or indeed a dog) alone on a dark night, or in a crowded hospital, what individual objective evidences would YOU use to ascertain its objective independent existence or lack thereof, in order just to satisfy your own mind.

Further, having established its physicality, what logical/shared taxonomic categorisations would you use to attach an appropriate label to such an entity??

Still no evidence please provide some

fullywired

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Still no evidence please provide some

fullywired

Is it wilful misunderstanding, or do you just not get it?

I HAVE provided MY evidences for MY rational conclusions about the existence of god. They are not transferable to you any more thanmy evidences for the existence of my wife or dog are, if you refuse to accpet them

But tha tis NOT what we were discussing (offering evidences YOU would find accepetable at a third hand removal from an experience)

This is not about what you believe. It is about whether I have logical and rational reasons, based on the existence of objective evidences to know god is real. Do you get that or not? I mean if you see a butterfly fly past you, what evidences do YOU use to ascertain that it is a part of the shared reality of our world and not a delusion tha texists only in your mind.

The same methods procedures and evdences can be applied to anything real and physicla from tha tbutterlfy to god or an angel There is only one certain method for a individual to KNOW something which is not taken on faith or belief in the word of others.; observational experience and logical deduction.

If the butterfly can be touched, photographed etc. then it is rea.l One doesnt need to produce the photos to know it is real. If one can feel it alight on your hand, if it casts a shadow, if it is suddenly swooped on and eaten by a bird which then poops on your face, then it has a real physical, objective existence.

And yes. A real angel or a manifestion of god, because it is physical, should be able to be photographed. It can certainly be observed by human senses and it inter-reacts physically with its surrounding environment, so as far as i can see, it should be able to be photographed. But then, a photograph of an angel would mean nothing to you either, and would not constitute transferrable objective evidence.

A question. If you do not, or cannot, trust the senses of your own body, and the abiilty of your mind, then how can you know that any singular thing you observe while alone is real? Surely you do not simply believe the word of others?

If you saw an angel, surely you would not refuse to accept its existence, just because it was "common knowledge" that angels are not real, or because, to do so would destroy a carefully constructed belief system integral to your whole world view.

ps are you actually reading each of my posts before you reply to them? Asking for evidence already given, and completely misunderstanding misrepresenting wha twe are debating suggests not.

My evidence for knowing an angel is solid, for example, is that i can touch a solid object, and know it is real. That IS scientific evidence, but there is no way i can prove to you that, when I touch an angel it has the same physical solidity as when I touch my dog or my wife. An angel can light up hundreds of square metres of night landscape and be seen by many witnesses from a distance.

And if i had a camera, i could possibly provide you with a photo of a 2 metre tall incandescent pillar of light lighting up my front yard as bright as day, casting shadows etc. But would you believe it was an angel? Of course not. You were not there to see it and hear it, and that is the crux of the problem Ii KNOW such a thing is real solid and physical, just like/for the same reasons based on evidence, that i know a 2000 watt spot light in my backyard is real. But you dont believe me.

Funny thing is; If i took a photo of such an angel and told you it was a spot light, you would probably believe me. But when i tell you it is an angel you probably could not bring yourself to believe it, because the lie fits your bias while the truth denies it.

Edited by Mr Walker
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Is it wilful misunderstanding, or do you just not get it?

I HAVE provided MY evidences for MY rational conclusions about the existence of god. They are not transferable to you any more thanmy evidences for the existence of my wife or dog are, if you refuse to accpet them

But tha tis NOT what we were discussing (offering evidences YOU would find accepetable at a third hand removal from an experience)

This is not about what you believe. It is about whether I have logical and rational reasons, based on the existence of objective evidences to know god is real. Do you get that or not? I mean if you see a butterfly fly past you, what evidences do YOU use to ascertain that it is a part of the shared reality of our world and not a delusion tha texists only in your mind.

The same methods procedures and evdences can be applied to anything real and physicla from tha tbutterlfy to god or an angel There is only one certain method for a individual to KNOW something which is not taken on faith or belief in the word of others.; observational experience and logical deduction.

If the butterfly can be touched, photographed etc. then it is rea.l One doesnt need to produce the photos to know it is real. If one can feel it alight on your hand, if it casts a shadow, if it is suddenly swooped on and eaten by a bird which then poops on your face, then it has a real physical, objective existence.

And yes. A real angel or a manifestion of god, because it is physical, should be able to be photographed. It can certainly be observed by human senses and it inter-reacts physically with its surrounding environment, so as far as i can see, it should be able to be photographed. But then, a photograph of an angel would mean nothing to you either, and would not constitute transferrable objective evidence.

A question. If you do not, or cannot, trust the senses of your own body, and the abiilty of your mind, then how can you know that any singular thing you observe while alone is real? Surely you do not simply believe the word of others?

If you saw an angel, surely you would not refuse to accept its existence, just because it was "common knowledge" that angels are not real, or because, to do so would destroy a carefully constructed belief system integral to your whole world view.

ps are you actually reading each of my posts before you reply to them? Asking for evidence already given, and completely misunderstanding misrepresenting wha twe are debating suggests not.

My evidence for knowing an angel is solid, for example, is that i can touch a solid object, and know it is real. That IS scientific evidence, but there is no way i can prove to you that, when I touch an angel it has the same physical solidity as when I touch my dog or my wife. An angel can light up hundreds of square metres of night landscape and be seen by many witnesses from a distance.

And if i had a camera, i could possibly provide you with a photo of a 2 metre tall incandescent pillar of light lighting up my front yard as bright as day, casting shadows etc. But would you believe it was an angel? Of course not. You were not there to see it and hear it, and that is the crux of the problem Ii KNOW such a thing is real solid and physical, just like/for the same reasons based on evidence, that i know a 2000 watt spot light in my backyard is real. But you dont believe me.

Funny thing is; If i took a photo of such an angel and told you it was a spot light, you would probably believe me. But when i tell you it is an angel you probably could not bring yourself to believe it, because the lie fits your bias while the truth denies it.

It is you that doesn't get it .,You stated that there was objective evidence for the existence of God and I asked you to share it with us but instead of providing us with it ,you filled your post with irrelevant chatter about not being able to walk through walls and bruising from hard shoves..Your right this is not about what I believe because I have not mentioned any of my beliefs, it is all about your beliefs which you are trying to pass off as facts,When you have some factual evidence ,not your beliefs provide us with them

fullywired

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It is you that doesn't get it .,You stated that there was objective evidence for the existence of God and I asked you to share it with us but instead of providing us with it ,you filled your post with irrelevant chatter about not being able to walk through walls and bruising from hard shoves..Your right this is not about what I believe because I have not mentioned any of my beliefs, it is all about your beliefs which you are trying to pass off as facts,When you have some factual evidence ,not your beliefs provide us with them

fullywired

I clearly stated there was personal objective evidence for the existence of god, exactly the same as for the existence of any indpenedent entity or artefact. I went on to explain how one could establish and verify those evidences.

I also got a bit testy because, like so many, you confuse personal concrete evidences with transferable evidences. For me to know something, it only requires concrete evidences available to me not to anyone else. That is the way humanity and our interaction with our environment works from evolutionary force of circumstance. We learn by physical interaction with our envronment..

To see if you understood this difference (and out of interest, i asked a couple of times if you would explain what objective evidences you use to establish the objective existence of anything in your own environment. The fact that you have not replied suggests you are well aware of the difference but are trying to maintain an argument that i never engaged in Of course my personal objective evidences may not be transferrable to you but that doesnt make them less real or less concrete or applicable.

And vice versa for your own concrete evidences. You KNOW certain things based on the evidences of your interactions with the environment around you. If you do not, you are in real trouble. If you had a tuna and lettuce sandwich for lunch, there is no way you can prove this objective reality to me, unless I accept your own word for it, and for any evidences like photos which you submit as proof For example i would not even know if a person in a photo was you, but YOU would.

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Is it wilful misunderstanding, or do you just not get it?

I HAVE provided MY evidences for MY rational conclusions about the existence of god. They are not transferable to you any more thanmy evidences for the existence of my wife or dog are, if you refuse to accpet them

But tha tis NOT what we were discussing (offering evidences YOU would find accepetable at a third hand removal from an experience)

This is not about what you believe. It is about whether I have logical and rational reasons, based on the existence of objective evidences to know god is real. Do you get that or not? I mean if you see a butterfly fly past you, what evidences do YOU use to ascertain that it is a part of the shared reality of our world and not a delusion tha texists only in your mind.

The same methods procedures and evdences can be applied to anything real and physicla from tha tbutterlfy to god or an angel There is only one certain method for a individual to KNOW something which is not taken on faith or belief in the word of others.; observational experience and logical deduction.

If the butterfly can be touched, photographed etc. then it is rea.l One doesnt need to produce the photos to know it is real. If one can feel it alight on your hand, if it casts a shadow, if it is suddenly swooped on and eaten by a bird which then poops on your face, then it has a real physical, objective existence.

And yes. A real angel or a manifestion of god, because it is physical, should be able to be photographed. It can certainly be observed by human senses and it inter-reacts physically with its surrounding environment, so as far as i can see, it should be able to be photographed. But then, a photograph of an angel would mean nothing to you either, and would not constitute transferrable objective evidence.

A question. If you do not, or cannot, trust the senses of your own body, and the abiilty of your mind, then how can you know that any singular thing you observe while alone is real? Surely you do not simply believe the word of others?

If you saw an angel, surely you would not refuse to accept its existence, just because it was "common knowledge" that angels are not real, or because, to do so would destroy a carefully constructed belief system integral to your whole world view.

ps are you actually reading each of my posts before you reply to them? Asking for evidence already given, and completely misunderstanding misrepresenting wha twe are debating suggests not.

My evidence for knowing an angel is solid, for example, is that i can touch a solid object, and know it is real. That IS scientific evidence, but there is no way i can prove to you that, when I touch an angel it has the same physical solidity as when I touch my dog or my wife. An angel can light up hundreds of square metres of night landscape and be seen by many witnesses from a distance.

And if i had a camera, i could possibly provide you with a photo of a 2 metre tall incandescent pillar of light lighting up my front yard as bright as day, casting shadows etc. But would you believe it was an angel? Of course not. You were not there to see it and hear it, and that is the crux of the problem Ii KNOW such a thing is real solid and physical, just like/for the same reasons based on evidence, that i know a 2000 watt spot light in my backyard is real. But you dont believe me.

Funny thing is; If i took a photo of such an angel and told you it was a spot light, you would probably believe me. But when i tell you it is an angel you probably could not bring yourself to believe it, because the lie fits your bias while the truth denies it.

I would think as a teacher you would know the difference between scientific evidence and anecdotal evidence. What you are using is anecdotal evidence, in other words it won't stand up in court.

Scientific evidence is evidence which serves to either support or counter a scientific theory or hypothesis. Such evidence is expected to be empirical evidence and in accordance with scientific method. Standards for scientific evidence vary according to the field of inquiry, but the strength of scientific evidence is generally based on the results of statistical analysis and the strength of scientific controls.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_evidence

The expression anecdotal evidence refers to evidence from anecdotes. Because of the small sample, there is a larger chance that it may be unreliable due to cherry-picked or otherwise non-representative samples of typical cases.[1][2] Anecdotal evidence is considered dubious support of a claim; it is accepted only in lieu of more solid evidence. This is true regardless of the veracity of individual claims.[3][4][5]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anecdotal_evidence

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I (on the other hand) think that life has great meaning. That's why we die.

Hi Lilly. :)

After giving your reply some thought I'd like to amend my post somewhat. While I still maintain that life has no specific meaning (unless one counts the primal and inherent instinct for survival as a meaning), I suspect that it's what we mean to others that is of greater importance here. In other words, it's not what we individually think of our own lives, but what we give and do for others that gives our lives meaning. It's through interaction (either good or bad -- and yes, I know those are subjective terms as well) with others that inspire and/or motivate us to go on living. Those that we love and admire, the children that we nurture and protect, the needy who we help in some way, even those who we dislike or even hate -- they all give meaning to our lives.

What I'm trying to say (struggling with a pain medication addled brain) is that without others in our lives, either loved ones or enemies, we are meaningless, and therefore dead.

But I still don't think we are born with any specific, definable, and preconceived meaning to our lives.

My apologies if any of this didn't make any sense.

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I would think as a teacher you would know the difference between scientific evidence and anecdotal evidence. What you are using is anecdotal evidence, in other words it won't stand up in court.

Scientific evidence is evidence which serves to either support or counter a scientific theory or hypothesis. Such evidence is expected to be empirical evidence and in accordance with scientific method. Standards for scientific evidence vary according to the field of inquiry, but the strength of scientific evidence is generally based on the results of statistical analysis and the strength of scientific controls.

http://en.wikipedia....ntific_evidence

The expression anecdotal evidence refers to evidence from anecdotes. Because of the small sample, there is a larger chance that it may be unreliable due to cherry-picked or otherwise non-representative samples of typical cases.[1][2] Anecdotal evidence is considered dubious support of a claim; it is accepted only in lieu of more solid evidence. This is true regardless of the veracity of individual claims.[3][4][5]

http://en.wikipedia....cdotal_evidence

You arent reading the debate correctly either.either. It is about How I know something is real, and has objective independent existence. I use the same evidences to determine the reality of an angel or an appearance by god, as i do for anything. If i walk down a lane and se a horse I can determine it is a horse and has indepnednt physical existence ( ie is not a delusion or hallucination) by a number of personal processes of examining the evidences available. This is true for a god or an angel, if either of them appears in physical form.

But i cannot prove i saw either the horse or the angel to someone who was not there at the time. And tha tis Not and never was my point. You can't change the nature of evidence required or the standard of proof just because you see an angel rather than a horse you have to apply equal standards to both.

My grandmother used to see rabbits running round her ceiling once she reached her ninelties (she knew they were not real)and my mother in law saw a n ocean liner many times sail past our front gate through the middle of a ripe wheat crop (she did not accept that it was not real because she was suffering from alzheimers and did not believe it was a whaet crop she saw but ocean waves.)

Applying evidences shows these visions were not real. For example No one else could see them they had no physicla evidence of ther existence and left no physicla traces of their appearnace into our world. etc.BUT for everything, from a rabbit, through an ocean liner to an angel or a god, one must always apply both the same standards and qualities of evidence AND the same aplication of logic and rational thought to decide if they are real/have independent objective existence.

Your comments on anecdotes while accurate have no relevance to how I determine what is real or not, only on what you chose to believe. I am not interested in convincing anyone of the reality of my experiences (that is impossible for any thing i do in my life even having a cup of coffee) only in pointing out that i use evidence and logic to determine that they ARE real. And eveidence existed long before science How does anyone KNOW they cant walk through a wal.l Not because someone tells them or because science explains the comparative molecular structure of a wall and a human being, but because of the evidence of their senses.

To take an extreme but correct position. We know EVERYTHING that we know, via the evidences provided by our personal senses. Anything not personally experienced is believed in faith because one accepts the word of a book or a film or an expert or some other person.. So i know the earth is curved because i live on the coast and can see that curvature in effect. I believe it is an oblate spheroid because i have seen photos from space and read the encyclopedic statistics on its size and shape.

But that is not knowledge because i have to accept the second hand data from other sources. It could ALL be false.

And actually, of course, anecdotal evidence has always been accepted in court, and still is. At least in the british/australian justice system. Iv'e been in court as an eye witness (to a robbery) and had my testimony accepted, largely because it was sworn under oath and with substantial penalties if i lied.. As it happens the evidences I am talking about ARE empirical evidences. One does not have to be in laboratory or under scientific observation to utilise empirical evidences One simply applies that scientific method you were speaking of, in the field. Empirical evidence is nothing more than evidence gathered by observation or experiment And that is just what i am talking about. Of course it is important how you use and apply that evidence, and how you treat it. But empirical is nothing more than observation and experimentation, which I apply to all my life experiences.

Edited by Mr Walker

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Faith is an excuse for believing things you really have no grounds for believing except that you want to.

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