Sunday Faith Blog

An Atheist is confused about GOD….. HERE is the article;  please read till the end.

The title of the article is:  I’M AN ATHEIST.  SO WHY CAN’T I SHAKE GOD?

Do you believe it’s God tickling and cajoling this ex believer, or do you believe, as said in the article,  “All of this is potentially a matter of neuropsychology.”?

I thought this was interesting and would love to hear your thoughts.

“Never will I leave you;
    never will I forsake you.”  
Hebrews 13:5

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Let’s talk!

Happy Sunday!

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19 Responses to Sunday Faith Blog

  1. bocopro says:

    Beth quite obviously has hacked into my hard drive and been reading my stuff. She touches on an explanation I’ve been working with for decades, that the human brain is hard-wired for belief in a supreme intelligence or being or some kind of eternal force . . . a need for answers to the unanswerable, solutions to the insoluble . . . and especially a belief that when our bodies give out, our spirits won’t dissipate like a charge of temporary static electricity created at random by natural phenomena over which we have no control.

    I’ve written hundreds, perhaps thousands of pages summarizing and analyzing Greek, Norse, Sumerian, Hebrew, Egyptian, Indian, and even native American belief systems. Also, I’ve dug into Zoroaster and Buddha and Jesus and Muhammad to try to discover what it’s all about, this instinct we’re born with for faith in something greater than ourselves.

    As a teacher, I learned that the best way to fully understand a concept is to try to explain it to others; if you can’t make it clear to them, then you don’t quite get it yourself. That’s apparently what I’ve been trying to do since the late 60s. I’ve even written several short stories on the topic, knowing full well as I did so that since virtually nobody would ever read them, I was just going through self-analysis to let contrived characters explain to me what I couldn’t do for myself.

    I keep coming back to the persistence, the dogged INsistence of faith systems to pop up independently and automatically in virtually every human culture ever developed. Scandinavia, Mediterranean, West Asian, East Asian, Central American, sub-Saharan Africa . . . regions with no mutual contact, yet they produce creators and theologies and trinities and systems remarkably similar to each other’s.

    Gotta be somethin there. GOTTA be. Point is, though, that I’m not sure exactly what that something is or why it would be interested in me, or a Muslim, or a Buddhist, or a Sikh, or a Jew . . . or even a sparrow, for that matter.

    We can put men on the moon, televise it live, and show evidence of their having been there . . . but there still will be those who refuse to accept it, who consider it all a big scam somehow, a fraud, a deception. But when Mayans come up with a pantheon so close to that which the Egyptians, or the Greeks, or the Norse, or even the bushmen of the Kalahari believed was real, that’s just too much co-inky-dinky for there NOT to be somethin drivin it.

    What is it? Donno. Don’t pretend to know. Doubt I ever will. But it’s been great mental calisthenics tryin to ‘splain it all to myself so that I can lay it out for everybody else. And once again, I consider a culture which adheres to a humble, moderate system of belief in and worship of forces far beyond human control or comprehension to be far better than one with no belief system at all except science or self.

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  2. As Jesus told Paul, “It is hard to kick against the goads”.
    God is there, and we struggle to explain why He isn’t.
    In Paul’s case, it’s not “God” he struggles against believing in, but the correct explanation of God. Jesus.
    That woman’s struggle reminds me of the struggle my stepson is going through.
    Raised in Christianity (pentecostal even, which is somwhat experiential), then rejecting it because it doesn’t line up with the world’s view, and a reasonsble defense was not presented or accepted.

    Raised Catholic, I fell away, but had a tug, knowing there was a God, like her and many.
    I rejected Christianity because I’d been inoculated as a youth.
    But if there is a God, wouldn’t discovering if He had a will for you, and what it was, be the most important thing you could do?
    That’s what I decided.

    Yet many shake their head and say. “It’s above me.”

    Romans 10:6
    6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) 7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) 8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach.

    It’s not rocket science.

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  3. Silverfiddle says:

    It’s hard to add anything to the last Ed and Bocopro’s excellent comments/

    God IS, and we can’t get around that.

    I am not qualified to go all Kantian on everyone, but religious and secular philosophers have filled libraries with writings about how there is more beyond reason and our five senses.

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  4. jerrydablade says:

    REALLY good stuff. I believe we were created, or “wired” with a need for God, and that a pursuit of wealth, power, pleasure and honors will not long satisfy. It is my fervent prayer that those close to me who have fallen away and now as a result – struggle with life (and happiness) – that they turn back to seek His Truth and are once again filled with the Holy spirit.

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  5. Neuropsychology is one of my hobbies (so to speak).

    Neuropsychologists will admit that they don’t really have an explanation for the spiritual side of our beings.

    Not everything is science!

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  6. AOW: Like I said “It’s not Rocket Science”. 🙂
    There may be a “science” behind it.
    A pattern. A cause and effect.
    But it’s probably best it’s out of our reach, or we’d be manipulating it.

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  7. geeez2014 says:

    “the human brain is hard-wired for belief in a supreme intelligence or being” Bocopro
    “but had a tug, knowing there was a God,” Ed
    “about how there is more beyond reason and our five senses” Silverfiddle
    “a pursuit of wealth, power, pleasure and honors will not long satisfy” Jerry
    “they don’t really have an explanation for the spiritual side of our beings.” AOW

    “But it’s probably best it’s out of our reach, or we’d be manipulating it.” Ed…
    And that’s why they call it FAITH……….

    Great responses and, obviously, I didn’t expect an “AHA” Moment of eternal truth and discovery but you covered the basic questions….and still no answers….except the pasting I did above here in this comment, from yours, really encapsulates the main ‘arguments’ and confirms more my “God’s tickling and cajoling” hypothesis in my post….

    I hope more weigh in and that you continue to…Great stuff!
    WHAT ‘hard wires us’ for belief? What’s that “tug?” What’s “beyond our five senses”?
    WHY is that not satisfying, Jerry? Scientists don’t have an explanation?

    Faith won’t be needed when we’re clearly seeing truth, and that’s when IT IS OVER. Amen and Amen. (I mean the “BIG OVER” :-))

    How about you?

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  8. Let’s say it’s neuropsychology.
    That “God shaped hole”.

    “What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace?

    This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself.” [Pascal, Pensees #425]
    Is that God drawing?
    A Calvinist will say that you only come to Jesus when the Spirit chooses to draw you.
    I believe we are all drawn, and some resist better than others.

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  9. Mal says:

    This reminded me about what a late friend of mine replied years ago when I asked him if he believed in God. After a short pause, he replied “Well, I believe in SOME THING. We all laughed.

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  10. Kid says:

    It’s hard to look around this beautiful planet and universe and think it is all an accident.

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  11. Mal says:

    True, Kid. Whenever we see photos taken of other planets, thus far they have all been barren. No foliage or other beauty. No mountain lakes. Nothin’. However, that’s not to say there aren’t any out there, given the endless possibilities of space. Certainly not in our Solar System, anyway. And if there are any they would also have been created by our God.

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  12. geeez2014 says:

    “That “God shaped hole”.
    That’s right, Ed…..I’ve had people say “What about the Big Bang Theory”..>Fine, bring it on…who ELSE could cause the Big Bang??!!! “Get your own dirt”…

    Kid, my pastor talked this morning a little about his Meyer lemon he grows in his yard…how just looking at that is such a pleasure (he’s a big time great cook, too)…the beauty of the gorgeous fruit, with deep dark leaves surrounding them….I’ll admit that would probably only appeal to the cooks you and he and I are, maybe, but he mentioned BEAUTY and how that is the goal and so Godly…Beauty in relationships, in the planet, in truth and grace…you’re so right. What accident?

    Mal….super comments there….yes, “SOMETHING!” 🙂

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exoplanet-census-suggests-earth-is-special-after-all/?WT.mc_id=SA_DD_20160218
    Check that out….it reminds me of what some of you have discussed above….WOW!!

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  13. Baysider says:

    This is a key to a deep problem in how our faith gets ‘experienced:’ “Franciscan nuns, Tibetan monks and Pentecostals all showed similar brain activity …; blood flow changed between different lobes of the brain, inducing powerful emotions.” And for many that problem is experience uber alles.

    There’s a reason Paul emphasizes “let your mind” etc. Humans love to wander off to these ‘experiences’ – and chemicals – that affect the brain like this. I believe we lived at a higher state like this before the fall and will again. It’s part of that hole left in us waiting to be completed, and we only get glimpses of it now in exercise, quiet meditation, sex, music, etc.

    There are good answers to the questions she posed as a teen which are asked either out of rebellion or genuine growth and exploration. We all need to be equipped to the genuine to answers as part of being prepared to give an answer for the faith in us. And, surprise!, that brings the mind back into the picture. Both mind and heart are essential. In balance.

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  14. Baysider says:

    That would be “equipped to lead the genuine to answers .”

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  15. geeez2014 says:

    Something special a friend asked me to post:

    Hi friends and family,
    My dad knows a Belgian 8-year old kid that has a very bad brain cancer and loves receiving old fashioned postcards from all over the world.
    I will send him a postcard from Los Angeles and am asking you to send him one from where you live.
    You may also pass along this email to all your friends.
    His name and address: Noa Derumier, Rue du Bois, 56, 7900 Leuze en Hainaut, Belgium
    Thank you!!

    Z: Please do that!!! Thanks so much

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  16. geeez2014 says:

    Baysider “exercise, quiet meditation, sex, music, etc.”…I couldn’t agree more.
    Glimpses of an ecstasy that has no explanation. Accident? I don’t think so.

    I agree she had excellent questions…and I think most of us have had the same questions.
    What makes me cringe is Christians quoting Scripture by which to bring an atheist or agnostic to faith. Yikes.
    It’s EXPERIENCE; recounting stories of totally changed lives of drug addicts, alcoholics, other types of addictions, misbehaving youth and adults, bad character, bad choices, anger, etc etc., which are totally reversed with prayer and belief………it’s almost uncanny and THAT is the most convincing persuasion available…
    The older I get, and the more mature and well read in my faith, I see that God just WANTS US….simply wants us. It’s the only true explanation of prayer; Otherwise, he’d be the “Big Butler in the Sky” answering all our prayers just as we ask”….

    EVERYBODY: One of my two Orson Bean favorite stories (from Breitbart…Orson was Andrew Breitbart’s father in law but this is after Andrew died) “Perhaps Bean’s most uplifting story was that he had sought a 12-step group to help him when he was using alcohol too much at one point in his life. Bean recounted that he told someone at a meeting he didn’t believe in God, so he didn’t know how to reach out to a “higher power.” His friend told him to get down on his knees and “thank God for the day.” Bean asked, “but why do I have to get on my knees to pray?” The man answered “because He likes it.”

    Orson started getting down on his knees and thanking God for the day, and his life began to change for the better. Through his reading of C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity and his continual prayer, “My life has gotten better and better and better and better.”

    Z: I love that “because He likes it”…..He wants to be praised, He wants our secrets, He wants our trust, He wants our souls and our lives….He wants US and we so often say “I came to Christ..” (to which I often say “THAT was BIG of you!” 🙂

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  17. Mal says:

    Z, the answer my friend gave wasn’t “something”. It was “SOME” (pause) “THING”, with accent on
    “thing”. That’s what made it so funny. (I didn’t make that very clear, did I?)

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  18. geeez2014 says:

    Mal…ah, a “THING”>>that’s even funnier! But, I can understand his thinking; it’s hard to believe in something you can’t touch or see, isn’t it. Until you see the fruits of that belief!

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  19. Pingback: My Article Read (2-21-2016) – My Daily Musing

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