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Why do people believe in God?
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Leonard James
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Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 3963


Location: Spain

PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:11 am    Post subject: Why do people believe in God?  Reply with quote

I have outlined what I think are a few of the reasons here :-

http://www.telefonica.net/web2/ljw/god1.html

Any other suggestions?
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Samuel Vimes
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Joined: 18 Oct 2009
Posts: 852



PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I believe there are various reasons why some people are Christians (or members of other religions) and others are not, and they are all due to nature/nurture.........each of us has a unique combination of personal traits.

The following are a few which I think influence whether we believe or not.......

1) The ability to believe without objective evidence. This varies from total credulity to absolute scepticism.......

2) Dependence. Varies from total dependence to complete independence. Some people are self-sufficient, and have no need to lean on others when it comes to making decisions, others are less certain, and need the support/advice of other people to help them in making up their minds..........

3) Response to indoctrinative methods. Varies from immune to susceptible. Some people are easily influenced........


So according to you people believe because they are more credulous than non-believers, are less independant than non-believers and are more susceptible to indoctrination than non-believers.

How very patronising of you.


Do you have any objective evidence to present in support of these conclusions of yours?
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Leonard James
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Joined: 19 Jan 2009
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Location: Spain

PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Sammy,

What a surprise to see you!  

Have a nice day!  
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Samuel Vimes
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Joined: 18 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leonard James wrote:
Hello Sammy,

What a surprise to see you!  

Have a nice day!  



So, do you have any objective evidence to present in support of these conclusions of yours or are they simply based on your subjective interpretation of reality?
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Shaker
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Joined: 25 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lenny, seems like you've picked up your very own stalker  
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Samuel Vimes
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Joined: 18 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

admin. wrote:
Lenny, seems like you've picked up your very own stalker  


Sorry, didn't realise that new discussions were limited to certain contributors only. Must have missed that rule here: http://nglreturns.myfreeforum.org/about86.html


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LornaDoone40
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Joined: 26 Aug 2008
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Location: Where He Leads...

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
1) The ability to believe without objective evidence. This varies from total credulity to absolute scepticism. People vary enormously in their ability to take things on trust, which is one reason why confidence tricksters are able to flourish. Their victims are highly credulous, and prepared to accept promises without prior investigation. Of course, if a personal desire is fulfilled, they are even more vulnerable, as in the case of rich men or women being preyed on by gold-diggers of the opposite sex, professing love for the victim, who needs to be loved regardless of his/her wealth.


It strikes me Leonard that there are a number of problems here: first you perpetuate the idea that spiritual faith must be supported by material and/or scientific evidence for it to have value. Faith falls outside the boundries of material and physical science and therefore the assertation that having faith is in the same vein as being susceptible to fraud is deeply flawed.

Quote:
2) Dependence. Varies from total dependence to complete independence. Some people are self-sufficient, and have no need to lean on others when it comes to making decisions, others are less certain, and need the support/advice of other people to help them in making up their minds. Most people, when young, are very dependent, and need guidance and instruction on how to live, but as they mature and are able to reason fully for themselves, they become more independent, and able to apply logical thought and past experience to the task.


Again this is not only a flawed presumption but a rather cold idea of humanity: to propose that if you are 'self-sufficient' you have 'no need to lean on others' and therefore are less likely to be religious, not only assumes that human fraility and fallibility are faults to be pitied but comes across as rather heartless, with respect.

Of course people take comfort in faith: but I'm afraid your argument thus far is over simplistic.

Quote:
3) Response to indoctrinative methods. Varies from immune to susceptible. Some people are easily influenced. If they completely trust the instructor, they can be induced to believe and do things they would not normally consider sensible or moral. Constant repetition of phrases can lull their will, and make them subject to the operator's own. If the person they are listening to has great charisma, and is a master at oration, the subjects will believe what he says without question, particularly if it boosts their ego. This is clear from the way mobs can be incited to violence by manipulation, and in extreme cases like the Nazi control which caused its followers to commit the most outrageous acts, believing them to be justified.


Again, you put people of faith into simplisitic box which takes no account of personal journey. I was brought up by a virulently anti-christian mother and agnostic father, yet I am a christian and it is not as though I am entirely unique in this. Nobody 'indocrinated' me.

I don't necassarily disagree that there have been, and are, charismatic religious leaders of dubious morality who persuade people because of clever oration and manuipulation of facts, but this is, like your other points, a rather broad and inprecise brush by which to make a point which is anyway flawed.
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Shaker
Site Admin


Joined: 25 Aug 2008
Posts: 8694



PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samuel Vimes wrote:
admin. wrote:
Lenny, seems like you've picked up your very own stalker  


Sorry, didn't realise that new discussions were limited to certain contributors only. Must have missed that rule here: http://nglreturns.myfreeforum.org/about86.html



More likely you missed this:

Quote:
Messages which could be deemed purely to cause offence/distress to others or which are considered to harass another poster may be removed, and persistent offenders in this regard will receive a warning and ultimately may be banned.

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There’s no reason to be agnostic about ideas that are dramatically incompatible with everything we know about modern science. - Sean M. Carroll
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Samuel Vimes
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Joined: 18 Oct 2009
Posts: 852



PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

admin. wrote:
Samuel Vimes wrote:
admin. wrote:
Lenny, seems like you've picked up your very own stalker  


Sorry, didn't realise that new discussions were limited to certain contributors only. Must have missed that rule here: http://nglreturns.myfreeforum.org/about86.html



More likely you missed this:

Quote:
Messages which could be deemed purely to cause offence/distress to others or which are considered to harass another poster may be removed, and persistent offenders in this regard will receive a warning and ultimately may be banned.


I see, so how exactly is engaging with the topic that has been introduced by another poster by asking them for the evidence that supports the basis of the position that they have expressed "harassing another poster"?

If someone expresses a point of view or opinion on this messageboard is it considered "harassment" by the admin and the moderators to challenge that point of view?

I have limited myself to challenging those views expressed by Leonard with which I disagree and, unlike some other members, have not engaged in any sort of personal attack.

If you're truly interested in "stalking" and "harassment" on this messageboard I suggest that you look elsewhere.  
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You did something because it had always been done, and the explanation was "but we've always done it this way." A million dead people can't have been wrong, can they?
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LornaDoone40
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Joined: 26 Aug 2008
Posts: 1605


Location: Where He Leads...

PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mmm. Have to say admin, you are not exactly coming across as being particularly even handed right now. I pretty much made the same point as Sam (except in a slightly more long winded fashion!)


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