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What is Truth?

It's not true if I don't experience it

Postby Newbie » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:30 pm

I must say that I don't wish to spend my life in fear of God and feeling empty because I'm waiting for Him to respond. It is much easier to get on with life believing He doesn't exist. When I try seeking Him, I get as much from Him as I do when I don't. It must mean He doesn't exist. It is possible that the Bible is false, and I think my experience of God (or lack thereof) confirms that it is.... What do I care if God really exists when He isn't present in my life? I'm sorry, but no matter how much you rant and rave about God, I will never believe in Him. He doesn't reach out to me -- or should I say as Christians do: He does reach out to me, but I simply don't recognize it. Amazing that such a big and powerful God exists, and it seems as though He doesn't. But, if He exists, I'm not interested in a God I can't relate to -- in a God who cannot reach me.

That's the bottom line. And, if I end up eternally separated from Him in total blackness with weeping and gnashing of teeth, so be it. But, I am going to enjoy the only life I'm guaranteed (this one), and not worry about "tomorrow." Unlike so many religious folks, I will be thankful for this life I have and not be greedy for more.
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Re: It's not true if I don't experience it

Postby Newbie » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:33 pm

Why the hell do I want to have anything to do with a God who is as silent in prayer as something that does not exist?

You Christians are talk about "a personal relationship with Jesus." That's bullshit! You're all the most deceived people I've EVER come across! Idiotic, pathetic, stupid. How can I take you seriously?

The bottom line for me is that God is not a reality -- EVEN WHEN I WANT HIM TO BE. So, f*** off, please. (Sorry). I'm tired of your bullshit, and the bullshit of all other Christians. God is supposed to be more than seemingly nothing. But, if God doesn't actually exist, how would you know in your blind faith that you're defending an idea that doesn't have a reality?

Frankly, I don't care about historical evidence of God, miracles accounts, etc. All that means NOTHING if God doesn't reveal Himself to a person. Think deeply on that... I know Christians will explain away what I'm about to say, but please hear me out... I want more than anything for God to be personal -- to relate to me like He did with Adam and Eve in the garden, or like He did with Abram or Moses.... But, if He doesn't do that, and if I'm left with just an ancient text and an idiosyncratic band of followers, I would be tempted to f***ing just end my life if atheism weren't an attractive option.

You must realize this -- AND PLEASE F***ING LISTEN (!) -- Christianity has been nothing to me but heartache and absolute misery. I yearned for a God who never showed up (at least, apparently)... I cannot be a "Christian" without f***ing losing my mind. And, if you can't understand that, then you're cruel, and NOT a blessing to me at all. A world in which God exists is a world in which I'd commit suicide. But thankfully, it is much easier to cope with life thinking He doesn't exist. ...You may secretly deep down despise me for making this choice, and may even act on that by threatening me with my eternal destiny like some know-it-all southern baptist/fundamentalist preacher. Well, I've got to say that, if you're wrong about God, you have wasted the majority of the only life you'll have before "lights out." ...But, you're not strong or smart enough to entertain that possibility with any level of seriousness, because, once you do, you know very well you will start to backslide. Best to maintain your defense mechanisms.

Do you know your religion makes me want to brutally f***ing murder myself? Like I said, that's why I don't hold to it. It's nothing but misery, and slavery. And, regarding your journal entry, your experience of God in prayer is my experience of God period. ...In short, I want a personal relationship with God, and that ain't happening.

P.S. I apologize for the swearing and name-calling... I'm just so deeply hurt at the thought of God. No philosophical or historical evidence will ever make up for the absense of God I feel in my life. Please understand that. I have no way of knowing this God in any personal way. He may exist. But, I seriously don't think He does (and that's not me being rebellious). This is me being lost. ...I would like to say a prayer and invite God into my life. ...But, sure as shit, I better not be expected to do ANYTHING apart from Him taking a major initiative. He better be present, or I ain't doing shit. That's only fair. Screw discipleship. I ain't following until I've come to know the dude -- not simply read about Him. Think on it....
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Re: It's not true if I don't experience it

Postby jimwalton » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:37 pm

First of all, Newbie, you should know right off the top that I'm not offended by anything you've said. Thank you for being honest and upfront with me. It's really the only way to talk.

Really, your letter made me think of the song "In This Moment," by Blood, that's on the radio now:

I hate you for the sacrifices you made for me
I hate you for every time you ever bled for me
I hate you for the way you smile when you look at me
I hate you for never taking control of me
I hate you for always saving me from myself
I hate you for always choosing me and not someone else
I hate you for always pulling me back from the edge
I hate you for every kind word you ever said
I’ll bleed you dry now

Blood blood blood
Pump mud through my veins
Shut your dirty, dirty mouth
I’m not that easy
Blood blood blood
Pump mud through my veins
I’m a dirty, dirty girl
I want it filthy

I love you for everything you ever took from me
I love the way you dominate and you violate me
I love you for every time you gave up on me
I love you for the way you look when you lie to me
I love you for never believing in what I say
I love you for never once giving me my way
I love you for never delivering me from pain
I love you for always driving me insane
I’ll bleed you dry now

Blood blood blood
Pump mud through my veins
Shut your dirty, dirty mouth
I’m not that easy
Blood blood blood
Pump mud through my veins
I’m a dirty, dirty girl
I want it filthy

I hate you, I hate you
I’ll bleed you dry now


Your letter of today is filled with emotional resentment. The agony is just dripping out of it. It sounds like what you really want is a God who responds directly with you in ways that are sensorily obvious and personally fulfilling. You want to pray and see some kind of clear result to let you know it was heard and acted on. You want to have some sense, but not in a mystical way, but more real than that, that God is with you, acting in your world, giving you help in undeniable ways, and intervening in your circumstances, not just as you wish necessarily, but for your ultimate good. Am I listening?

I'll say this: I understand that. I want that too. I honestly do.

Maybe we can take our conversation in a different direction for now. I want helpful conversation, not one that drives you to murderous rage.

As to your first letter to me, the point isn't that it's easier to get on with life believing God doesn't exist. I might even possibly agree with that: it probably is. Certainly we can also agree that one's belief about something doesn't make it so or not so. You wouldn't be feeling this so deeply if you didn't believe in objective reality. I can tell that's what is driving you to such expansive anger: you believe in objective reality, and God doesn't seem to fit into that frame for you. I understand that. But it's a bit of a leap from there to conclude that because it's outside of your sensory network, it's evidence of non-existence. I just can't buy that your experience is the foundation of truth—that whatever you experience is true, and whatever you don't, isn't. I'm trying to be respectful here, but I think you're working with a false set of presuppositions. Let me explain.

I believe that objective truth is the only rational presupposition, and cause-and-effect is the way to perceive it. You, in contrast, if I am listening well, are starting with yourself, and trying rationally to build out from yourself, having only yourself as your integration point, to find all knowledge, meaning, and value. Kierkegaard championed your existentialist viewpoint, but Sartre explained how it makes everything meaningless: you just choose, and act, because your experience is all that matters. There is no objective truth, reality, or morality, because existence is centered in you and you alone. It's as if you've given up all hope of achieving a rational, unified answer to knowledge and life. My religion, you say, or any thought of God or faith, makes you want to brutally murder yourself. You, for lack of the objective reality you seek, find more peace in the idea that everything is chance, and the meaninglessness that underpins it is all you have to go on.

Christianity, working with a different set of presuppositions, says that a real, external, objective world exists, and that humans as real, personal beings exist. Descartes taught, "I think, therefore I am." Sartre mourned, The basic philosophical question is that something is there rather than that nothing is there. Christianity teaches what you have discovered: that if there is no truth, there is no hope.

The Bible teaches the reality of individual personality. It teaches a God who communicates to humankind in verbalized form through the written word, not by direct speech to each individual. It teaches true moral absolutes that rest on the character of God, which results in man's culpability for not conforming to His character. It teaches the existence of a good God, hope of a solution to the dilemma of man, and a sufficient basis for morality. It teaches an adequate reason for fighting for the truth, and for the good.

In your despair you have cried out, and rightfully so, that you want proof that is existentially verifiable. OK, let's try:

1. Cause and effect are real dynamics in our objective world and they help us truly understand our reality.
2. A natural, objective world exists that is verifiable by our senses, the scientific method, and rational thought. The external world, remarkably, has form and order. It is not a chaotic world even though randomness is part of its form.
3. Objective truth is verifiable based on cause and effect, our senses, the scientific method, and rational thought.
4. Objective truth, then, is potentially outside of the range of any individual's personal experience and is not subject to it.
5. Our search, consequently, is to find that objective truth, whether it is within our immediate experiences or not.
6. All sources of truth are to be considered in our search for proof, from whatever discipline or arena.
7. Truth is observed, then, from a unity of knowledge from all objective sources, whether or not they are within the range of our immediate experiences. Sartre himself argued that no finite point has any meaning unless it has an infinite reference point.
8. Thus truth can possibly encompass abstractions such as love, morality, freedom, and significance (all of which would give evidence of something other than a chance, impersonal beginning), regardless of my experiences of them. Plato asserted that unless you have absolutes, morals do not exist.
9. The presence of positive, objective abstractions in the universe speaks to the possibility, at the very least, of the existence of a beneficent deity who exists outside the range of our immediate experiences.
10. If there is even the most remote possibility that a God is actually there, who is the source of truth...
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