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 LJane_6
Joined: 6/10/2015
Msg: 295
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the harder it gets, the righter it isPage 13 of 13    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Only claims of a supernatural being require evidence. Atheism requires no evidence because it doesn't make a claim, it's simply the absence of superstition...Therefore, atheism requires no faith.


The way I see it, atheism is a belief that there is no God. Theism is belief that there is a god (or gods). Since neither belief can be tangibly "proven," both require some degree of faith. I would say that agnosticism is the one position that makes no claims, as it doesn't commit to either side.


No, the presence of god as defined by your Biblical belief. And, to me, that is the arrogance of almost all religions. - to define god and god's (or gods') likes and dislikes.


When it comes to faith, believing intellectually and experiening God's presence are two different things. The former requires a conscious decision, and the latter involves emotions. Yes, most believe that to be a Christian means to define God by the bible (as we see it as the word of God). However, there are other ways to define and experience God (through nature, music, relationships, etc). Lately I've been leaning more toward the belief that people can experience God in different ways (as @Coma_White mentioned, there are so many religions that are equally convinced of the reality of their "God.") I do believe there is a God, and I believe he lived in human form as Jesus. But it makes sense to me that people could connect with God in other ways, as an all-powerful God could take on different forms and interpretations.


(God dislikes sinners so - we must drive them out of town/burn them at the stake/destroy their homes and families/etc.). Or 'god says this and science says that so we must burn books and not let our children learn anything we don't teach them'.


There are certainly many examples in history of religious extremism that resulted in evil and violent acts. I do not believe this is the nature of God. I do believe that people take religious writings out of context and twist them around to further their own agendas. Followers can get caught up in these "religions" and brainwashed by them.


It's not that old saying, 'seeing is believing' (or 'experience leads to belief') but rather 'believing is seeing' (what is believed is experienced).


As for whether that applies to myself, it's hard to be objective about your own experiences, or to defend them to others as reality. The God I believe in is a God of love. That's the best way I can summarize it. The bible is confusing to me. I've read many powerful truths in it, but also struggle with parts of it.
 Coma_White
Joined: 9/15/2013
Msg: 296
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 1:59:35 AM

The way I see it, atheism is a belief that there is no God. Theism is belief that there is a god (or gods). Since neither belief can be tangibly "proven," both require some degree of faith. I would say that agnosticism is the one position that makes no claims, as it doesn't commit to either side.


Atheism can't be a belief because a belief requires a suspension of logic and reason. Religion makes a positive claim that God exists while atheism doesn't make claims, it's just a way of describing people that don't follow that. Most people are atheists toward something like the Easter Bunny, Bigfoot, unicorns, fairies, Zeus, Apollo, etc. If a person or religion makes the claim that something exists, they have the burden of proof, the people that don't believe have no responsibility to prove it's false. I'm not an atheist myself, but I usually pick "atheist" or "agnostic" when I'm given the option because I don't follow religion and my concept of God is very abstract. I can't make claims that my idea of God can be proven though because it's just an idea without evidence.
 LJane_6
Joined: 6/10/2015
Msg: 297
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 4:03:02 AM
If you have a concept of God, but aren't sure of his existence, I'd say you are an agnostic, not an atheist. Of course, we seem to have a different idea of what that word means. So, I'm just curious...I know we are taking the thread way off topic, but if you don't mind expanding on it, what is your idea of God (a person, creator, force)? and is it based on an experience you've had, something you've seen/heard/read, or just a sense of who God is?
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 298
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 8:37:49 AM
Getting off track a bit, but relating to the belief in something that's not tangible or visible: I was watching a reality TV show about a guy who is able to channel the dead and relay messages to the living. Unless it was staged, it seemed pretty realistic and he was able to tell people details about their personal lives that only the person involved would know, since supposedly, the medium and the other person have never met before.

With that being said, do most religious people believe that when a person dies, their spirit is still around, and some people could possess the skills to communicate with them? Or is communicating with the dead unrelated to religion?
 Butterchickenchuck
Joined: 9/18/2015
Msg: 299
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 8:43:53 AM
According to Anita Moorjani, a woman who had a Near Death Experience, " God " isn't a being but a " state of being ".


https://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/17267641-dying-to-be-me-my-journey-from-cancer-to-near-death-to-true-healing


“Religion is just a path for finding truth: Religion is not truth. It is just a path. And different people follow different paths.”
 Chromis1
Joined: 9/9/2015
Msg: 300
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 8:53:28 AM

With that being said, do most religious people believe that when a person dies, their spirit is still around, and some people could possess the skills to communicate with them? Or is communicating with the dead unrelated to religion?


I don't believe that's a necessary tenet of most religions. But since many religions are underpinned by a belief in the afterlife, many people would like to believe that their dearly departed are still "around". I'm skeptical. I dream about my dead wife almost every night and I know plenty of folks who believe she's "talking" to me. I don't believe this. I think my subconscious is trying to heal my mind.

To answer your question - communicating with the dead seems to be mostly unrelated to core religious beliefs. Fatima may be one of the rare exceptions - where seeing into the other side has been put forth as proof that core beliefs are sound. But then again, Mary never really was "dead". Splitting hairs.
 freemanrebel6
Joined: 12/21/2015
Msg: 301
Finding the Right Person is Hard and Getting Harder, Particularly, if You are a Person of Faith
Posted: 3/14/2016 10:38:12 AM
I am a Christian myself. You either are or you aren't. Christ made it very clear when he said turn from all things take up your cross and follow me. God called me to do that several years ago. Since then He has drawn me to himself continually. I have had plenty of sex and plenty of women in the past but no longer desire it most of the time; save for a few fleeting moments of temptation from time to time. God has put a new spirit in me. I also now believe that sex is best left for marriage and I am pursuing marriage. I would invite you all to check out a youtube video entitled "The Truth About Sex: Facts You Won't Believe Are True!" by Stefan Molyneux. He isn't a Christian but he presents data showing that there is a direct correlation with the number of sexual partners and success in marriage among other things. Typically the more sexual partners a person has the less likely they are to be successful in marriage or long term relationships. Unless of course; I believe; God steps in and transforms a person supernaturally. But honestly if you are a Christian POF just leaves much to be desired. It is a wasteland of over sexed profiles with miles of cleavage always attempting to short circuit a mans mind for his penis. It is so easy to date and get laid in this culture. What is amazing and truly supernatural is when God changes your heart to the point that you don't want to. Even now that is hard to get my head around. I will say I have met a few really great Christian women on POF though. It just didn't work out for other reasons of compatibility. I tried the Christian dating sites too but what I found was a lot of identifying Christian women who where in fact not. I found if I would say I was a godly man and desired to wait they would do even more to throw their vagina at me just to prove to themselves that I wasn't the real deal and I think maybe unconsciously to prove to themselves deep down that God was a liar. It worked a few times and I would fall into a physical relationship and have to taper it back and push it away. I don't know what to say elsadora it is very difficult.
 Chromis1
Joined: 9/9/2015
Msg: 302
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Finding the Right Person is Hard and Getting Harder, Particularly, if You are a Person of Faith
Posted: 3/14/2016 12:03:57 PM

they would do even more to throw their vagina at me just to prove to themselves that I wasn't the real deal and I think maybe unconsciously to prove to themselves deep down that God was a liar.


But ...


It worked a few times and I would fall into a physical relationship and have to taper it back and push it away.


I honestly have no idea what the takeaway from this is meant to be.
 cassie2425
Joined: 3/4/2016
Msg: 303
Finding the Right Person is Hard and Getting Harder, Particularly, if You are a Person of Faith
Posted: 3/14/2016 12:25:34 PM
"...throw their vagina..."

Is that like dwarf tossing?

I'm only asking because I'm female and I'm short and I'd hate to think that either of these will become a new fad.
 Coma_White
Joined: 9/15/2013
Msg: 304
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 12:37:50 PM

If you have a concept of God, but aren't sure of his existence, I'd say you are an agnostic, not an atheist. Of course, we seem to have a different idea of what that word means. So, I'm just curious...I know we are taking the thread way off topic, but if you don't mind expanding on it, what is your idea of God (a person, creator, force)? and is it based on an experience you've had, something you've seen/heard/read, or just a sense of who God is?


I usually say I'm atheist because I don't feel like explaining I'm non religious and this and that, but agnostic works too even though it technically means "not knowing."
I feel that religion is just someone else's concept of spirituality, that's why I don't follow it. There's no evidence for my idea or their idea, so I don't expect anyone to believe me, it's just a personal idea I have of what may or may not exist.
For me, God is everything. A soul or consciousness would have no human traits, it would be more like thoughtless awareness. There would be no punishment or reward after this life because actors that play good guys or bad guys in plays don't get rewarded or punished after the play for what their character did. Going to the afterlife would be like waking up from a dream. I don't believe in ghosts hanging around because when you wake up from a dream, you don't feel like you have to go back to building that house you were building in the dream or spending time with the people in your dream, you just wake up and start doing things.
I also think "reality" is an illusion that's similar to watching a movie. You're not the movie, but you get to experience the movie and you're back to where you started when the movie is over. When you think beyond that, everyone is really one soul. Like the comedian Bill Hicks used to say, we're all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. My ideas have been influenced a bit by shamanism and how they work with things like Salvia Divinorum and Sinicuichi to receive visions of the spirit world. An interesting book on the topic is Peopled Darkness by J.D. Arthur. Beyond that, I'm aware that my ideas are just ideas and aren't worth a pile of beans to anyone else without proof. I'd also encourage people to read something like Initiation into Hermetics by Franz Bardon if they want to understand the more gnostic or mystical aspects of existence.
 norwegianguy456
Joined: 6/11/2015
Msg: 305
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 12:51:01 PM

Theism is belief that there is a god (or gods).

Correct.

The way I see it, atheism is a belief that there is no God.

No. Atheism (a-theism) is merely not holding that belief. You're defining atheism = anti-theism. Atheism = non-theism. There's a difference between something being anti-bacterial (kills germs) and abacterial (without germs). Culturally, people want to push people to believe in a God (namely more or less their own version), so it becomes an "Either you're for us or against us," mentality. Hence, instead of holding the belief that there is no God being a subset of "not theistic" -- they're trying to say those who aren't theistic are anti-theism. :)

believing intellectually and experiening God's presence are two different things

Believing and experiencing are two different things, yes. But if you Believe an experience is one of God's presence, then they're not so different. :) One just has a (good, I hope) experience attached to it!

But it makes sense to me that people could connect with God in other ways, as an all-powerful God could take on different forms and interpretations.

Sure. I mean, this all-powerful "God" isn't all-loving as described by others (or has a totally different view of love that would Not set well in the parental or dating scene), but sure, It could exist, sure. Many non-religious people see the universe itself as "God" but don't see it as an old middle-eastern guy, but then one's really stretching the definition. I think when you take the supernatural part out of it, and an eternal Paradise after life if you were nice and not naughty -- most folks who are religious will understandably see that vast difference and it'll be hard to equate the two, especially if their religion is by-the-book.

The God I believe in is a God of love. That's the best way I can summarize it. The bible is confusing to me. I've read many powerful truths in it, but also struggle with parts of it.

I don't think there's much controversy with one believing "there's a loving God out there" letting us play out life ourselves, without any intervention or maybe really rare intervention that doesn't affect life on Earth much if at all. But you do have to realize that you're following a Middle Eastern religion -- and that 12 disciples, a son of a God being cruxified and rising from the dead 3 days later -- isn't original. The NT borrowed stories from elsewhere. But, as one of my Catholic friends who understands this says, the Bible's just his vessel for peace and being a good person that's true to God out there.
 2ufo
Joined: 2/28/2015
Msg: 306
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/14/2016 2:26:10 PM

...what is your idea of God (a person, creator, force)? and is it based on an experience you've had, something you've seen/heard/read, or just a sense of who God is?


Trying to get a (verbal) description of what god is (or, as you phrase, 'you God is') is limiting, once again trying to define and put god in a box. People can barely describe their emotions to each other and you want a description of their concept of god?


The bible is confusing to me. I've read many powerful truths in it, but also struggle with parts of it.


Confusion is good; if followed, it leads to information/intelligence/enlightenment - you know, that sort of thing.
 browneyesboo
Joined: 8/14/2015
Msg: 307
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/15/2016 12:27:54 PM
I don't usually get involved with threads about god, but for some
reason I scanned a post and I saw something about throwing vaginas.
That's something I'd like to hear more about.
I wonder if that happens before or after they pay for dinner?
 Chromis1
Joined: 9/9/2015
Msg: 308
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/15/2016 12:46:54 PM
^^^ I think the poster who wrote that was sorta confused. He might have been thinking about the Cornhole game; similar concept, but it's not the vagina that's being thrown - instead, a scrotum-like bag is thrown into a hole. For points, of course.
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 309
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/15/2016 1:58:31 PM

...what is your idea of God (a person, creator, force)? and is it based on an experience you've had, something you've seen/heard/read, or just a sense of who God is?


Since there's difficulty describing what God is and means to each person, let's try it from the other end of the spectrum. What is the devil? Did the bible or any other holy book describe him as human male form that wears a red jump suit with a tail on it who has a pitchfork fetish? Is that suppose to be a fashion statement? Is Satan trying to be hip and sexy looking? Maybe that painting of the older farmer couple standing in front of their farm house, where the guy is holding a pitchfork was actually Satan in disguise, since Jesus came to earth as a human male figure.

If Satan's main job is to stoke the fires in Hell, that brings up another question: Are souls flammable? If people's dead brains are left on earth buried in a pit in the ground, how would they know they're being punished? And where does the fuel and burning material come from to keep the flames going forever? And the most important questions is: If God is so wonderful, why would he be punishing some people by sending them or letting them go to Hell instead of saving them by giving them a free pass to Heaven? Shouldn't God love all people equally, or is he like Donald Trump who hates certain segments of the population for no particular reason, and God has built has a divine wall to keep the two sides divided-to keep the people he likes on one side and the people he doesn't like on the other side? If Adolf Hitler or any other mass murderer suddenly became religious in the last few days of their lives and begged a God for forgiveness, would they be on the Heaven side of the wall?
 gtomustang
Joined: 6/16/2007
Msg: 310
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/15/2016 4:34:25 PM
I can't vouch for the validity of this article, but its interesting:

http://truthmagazine.com/archives/volume40/GOT040120.html


I figure Satan was created in a time when humans didn't have a real scientific answer for why things went bad.

Brains can feel physical and emotional pain, usually thru chemical reactions if I remember correctly. if I also remember correctly, somewhere in the Old Testament we weren't coming back from the dead until the End of Times, so we might get something of our body back. Why does God punish us? Tough love, i suppose. the nuns used to teach, however, that like the Prodigal Son, true repentance at the last moment was a ticket in.
 FullMoonGuy
Joined: 3/7/2014
Msg: 311
Finding the Right Person is Hard and Getting Harder, Particularly, if You are a Person of Faith
Posted: 3/15/2016 7:56:31 PM

It is so easy to date and get laid in this culture.


LOL.
Good one.

Oh, you were serious??


I found if I would say I was a godly man and desired to wait they would do even more to throw their vagina at me just to prove to themselves that I wasn't the real deal and I think maybe unconsciously to prove to themselves deep down that God was a liar. It worked a few times and I would fall into a physical relationship


Well, that was convenient.
 LJane_6
Joined: 6/10/2015
Msg: 312
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the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/29/2016 1:11:26 AM

Trying to get a (verbal) description of what god is (or, as you phrase, 'you God is') is limiting, once again trying to define and put god in a box. People can barely describe their emotions to each other and you want a description of their concept of god?


I was curious to know what his beliefs were as he could best describe them. (Since he referred to himself as an atheist/agnostic but "having a concept of God.") If someone asked me that question, I could make the answer either very complicated or very simple. If I had to describe my concept of God in one word, I would say He is Love.


“Religion is just a path for finding truth: Religion is not truth.


I completely agree that religion is not truth - God is. And everyone's path will be as different as we are. My path is even different from other Christians who believe in the same version of God as I do.


It worked a few times and I would fall into a physical relationship and have to taper it back and push it away.


I understand that it's hard for people trying to abstain to resist temptation. But I think you know that while these women may have been trying to tempt you into a physical relationship, both people are equally responsible for being in one.


Since there's difficulty describing what God is and means to each person, let's try it from the other end of the spectrum. What is the devil? Did the bible or any other holy book describe him as human male form that wears a red jump suit with a tail on it who has a pitchfork...Maybe that painting of the older farmer couple standing in front of their farm house, where the guy is holding a pitchfork was actually Satan in disguise, since Jesus came to earth as a human male figure.


The bible actually does not state that Satan is red or has a pitchfork. It says he was originally an angel, one of the most beautiful angels in heaven. He wanted to be God and rebelled against him, so God cast him out of heaven. The bible describes Satan in many ways, and I believe he can take on different forms, such as in the Garden of Eden when he turned himself into a serpent.


If Satan's main job is to stoke the fires in Hell, that brings up another question: Are souls flammable? If people's dead brains are left on earth buried in a pit in the ground, how would they know they're being punished? And where does the fuel and burning material come from to keep the flames going forever?


This is another common misconception of Hell. The bible also describes Hell in many different ways; for example, it describes it as both a lake of fire and eternal darkness. Since eternal fire and darkness cannot coexist, these cannot both be true. I believe they are metaphors and not accurate physical descriptions. I'd say the most literal description of hell is "eternal separation from God."


And the most important questions is: If God is so wonderful, why would he be punishing some people by sending them or letting them go to Hell instead of saving them by giving them a free pass to Heaven? Shouldn't God love all people equally, or is he like Donald Trump who hates certain segments of the population for no particular reason, and God has built has a divine wall to keep the two sides divided-to keep the people he likes on one side and the people he doesn't like on the other side?


The way this has been described to me is that God gives everyone a choice whether to accept or reject him. If someone chooses to reject God until the end of their life, they choose separation from Him. Though he will give us chances in this life, and show himself to people in different ways. I personally don't believe that hell is a place of eternal suffering, though. I think the "eternal separation" may just mean the person dies and doesn't live on.


If Adolf Hitler or any other mass murderer suddenly became religious in the last few days of their lives and begged a God for forgiveness, would they be on the Heaven side of the wall?


I don't know. I really can't say who goes to heaven and who doesn't. I do know that even Christians, though we are forgiven, have to be accountable for our deeds. The bible says that when Jesus returns, we will not be judged for our salvation, as a believer that can't be taken away. But we will be judged for how we chose to live our lives as Christians. Therefore, those who "prayed the prayer" but were not earnest won't get a free pass. If a person is sincere, their lives should show proof of transformation in the form of the fruits of the spirit. (Not perfection, but a true heart change).


you do have to realize that you're following a Middle Eastern religion -- and that 12 disciples, a son of a God being cruxified and rising from the dead 3 days later -- isn't original. The NT borrowed stories from elsewhere.


There are different theories on this. The link below provides some interesting discussion on the topic of the resurrection:

https://youtu.be/mNYWwlk_R3A
 LJane_6
Joined: 6/10/2015
Msg: 313
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Finding the Right Person is Hard and Getting Harder, Particularly, if You are a Person of Faith
Posted: 3/29/2016 1:26:59 AM

But honestly if you are a Christian POF just leaves much to be desired...I tried the Christian dating sites too but what I found was a lot of identifying Christian women who where in fact not.


Totally agree with this, I've tried POF and Christian Mingle and it is very hard to find like-minded people. Not everyone who calls themselves a Christian really is, and not all Christians share the same views on premarital sex, some are totally fine with it. I've pretty well given up on online dating altogether, and not just because of the sex thing. Even with that aside I haven't met anyone online that I really clicked with.
 IgottaName
Joined: 3/29/2014
Msg: 314
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/29/2016 2:56:48 AM

The way I see it, atheism is a belief that there is no God. Theism is belief that there is a god (or gods). Since neither belief can be tangibly "proven," both require some degree of faith. I would say that agnosticism is the one position that makes no claims, as it doesn't commit to either side.

A negative cannot be proven, therefore there is no logic in asking an atheist to prove there is no god. On the other hand believers should not only be prepared to prove that their god does exists AND prove that their god is THE god.
Agnosticism is for fence sitters.
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 315
the harder it gets, the righter it is
Posted: 3/29/2016 6:56:40 AM
"...AND prove that their god is THE god."

Wouldn't that require proving that other versions of God and religions are false? Isn't that how religious wars started throughout history? It's a moot point, since everybody feels their version of God/higher power is the right one, and everybody else in the world is worshiping a false God.
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