Are you more religious?

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cldlhd

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I am always amazed at the amount of bashing that some groups pull on christians. I frequent a group that endorses a higher power and still many bash the church. I have found that people of faith have direction and tend to be more at peace with themselves and the word.

I am truely thankful for the spirit of acceptance and tolerance on VR.com

Karlynn----- what type of guitar do you play? I have been playing for years and love it.

Tom
When you say "the church" which one do you mean?
 

cldlhd

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I would disagree that He leaves/forsakes His own. I say that, firstly based upon His promise. I say it, secondly, based upon my own life experiences.

I would also agree that there are people who lean upon their own selves for these types of matters. How that works out for them, I am unable to give that answer because I am not them. But, as a Christian, I can say that having trust and faith in our Creator and the hope for what is still yet to come, in the midst of whatever it may be... heart valve issues... oh, let's say, I dunno.. a worldwide virus situation, upon which many people also disagree..;). there is a peace and contentment to be drawn from one's faith. A person who believes in a Creator, an intended design to it all, versus someone who believes that everything came about from purely natural processes, somehow, is going to have extremely different foundational beliefs against which all other thoughts, decisions, perceptions, etc., etc, etc., are formed. It is only natural for a believer to rely upon their faith, especially when our own life and death are on the line.
I can agree with that even though I might not necessarily be a believer. In other words I can understand how believing there will be an afterlife then you will see your loved ones who have passed and live forever happily has an appeal. I can also see there being an appeal to thinking you are important enough to have been put here for a purpose by someone as powerful as God or a creator of the universe. That sort of thinking always struck me as arrogance disguised as humility and I don't mean that as an insult. Just the way it seems to me. I'm not saying there definitely isn't a God but it always just seems like wishful thinking to me because of the way people fear death and nothingness. I actually in a way envy people who are confident in their belief of a God and an afterlife. I've sort of always fell into the it's unlikely category but sometimes lean into Pascals theory on doesn't hurt you to believe and be wrong as much as it would hurt to not believe and be wrong to paraphrase. Furthermore I'm sure that a devout belief is helpful and difficult times like facing surgery or the loss of a loved one. I don't get offended by people's beliefs as long as they're not the type to get offended by those who don't believe in the same things or to judge them negatively. There is a lot of that by the way. Like when somebody is described as "same person of faith" which is obviously a meant as a high compliment which means that if you aren't a person of faith it is inherently a negative.
 

vitdoc

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Personally I don't think this discussion has anything to do with this forum. From a perspective of an atheist I found religion to be a relatively harmless mass delusion that made some people happy and content. Unfortunately as the years have gone by I have realized that religion is not so benign. Ultimately it is a force for tribalism and pulls people apart much more than the alternative. It is based on "faith" which is inherently not rational or scientific. So any discussion based on science or rational thought can not change an irrational mind set. In today's political climate it is impossible to ignore the influence of religion from birth control to gay marriage to Sharia law. So being an atheist means freedom from religion not necessarily a desire to ban or alter religion.
If believing in some mystical ideas makes people happy so be it. But please keep it to yourself and don't try to foist these antediluvian ideas on others. I expect to hear some comments about this but I don't expect to speak any further about this. I think this thread should be closed.
 

Meanjellybean

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Personally I don't think this discussion has anything to do with this forum. From a perspective of an atheist I found religion to be a relatively harmless mass delusion that made some people happy and content. Unfortunately as the years have gone by I have realized that religion is not so benign. Ultimately it is a force for tribalism and pulls people apart much more than the alternative. It is based on "faith" which is inherently not rational or scientific. So any discussion based on science or rational thought can not change an irrational mind set. In today's political climate it is impossible to ignore the influence of religion from birth control to gay marriage to Sharia law. So being an atheist means freedom from religion not necessarily a desire to ban or alter religion.
If believing in some mystical ideas makes people happy so be it. But please keep it to yourself and don't try to foist these antediluvian ideas on others. I expect to hear some comments about this but I don't expect to speak any further about this. I think this thread should be closed.
I do not believe that the thread should be closed.
If someone wants to connect and discuss faith or religion in the context of support and ideas then it is a great way to have that connection. I find it comforting knowing that people are praying for me in my circumstance and i am sure other believers would too.

It doesnt have to be a specific religion or God for some but more a belief in a that we are not all factors of random chance in an infinite cosmos.

If you dont believe or not interested in things of faith that cannot be reasoned by scientific reasons then 100% this is not a interesting thread for you. But it may be for others.
And to close the thread would be imposing your beliefs onto others more then the other way around.
 

dornole

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I guess I'll weigh in, I'm a progressive Christian and I always like folks to know that we at least exist. I'm highly educated and I have a ton of respect for science. My sister (and best friend in the world and spectacular human) is an atheist. I'm strongly supportive of LGBTQ rights and my church has an enormous rainbow flag flying outside it. I think it's a height of arrogance for anyone to think they are in possession of the whole and only truth about something as immense as God. I choose to go to the dance, "with the partner who brought me," and deepen a spiritual side that humanity has always acknowledged by engaging in a spiritual community. (Preface.)

The original question on this thread was, did your heart experiences make you more religious? I'd say yes because of an experience I had. Unlike many others here I found out I had a heart condition more suddenly, when I developed congestive heart failure and pulmonary edema due to previously undetected mitral stenosis while pregnant with twins, started coughing up blood, was admitted to the cardiac unit, then taken via ambulance to a different hospital for a C-section at 27 weeks gestation -- all within 24 hours. I was in the main OR with more than a dozen people and it was clear to me that they were stressed and worried and that I might not survive, or my babies might not survive. Yet I felt an overwhelming calm and assurance that things would be okay that I couldn't explain and did not generate or expect. I didn't perceive I would live necessarily, simply that things would work out and that I did not need to worry. It was very intense and unexpected. I remember thinking, "Hot damn! Guess it was worth waking up all those Sundays." I still don't pretend to understand God but this body-felt experience has left me unafraid of death and is helpful for other problems as well. I was left afterwards with profound gratitude to still be alive, for the skills of my care team and plain good fortune. The experience has helped be be more grateful overall, which along with compassion and awe I consider to be the religious emotions. That was my experience of heart stuff and religion and if the OP is even here still, I hope it helps her. May God, Marcus Aurelius, the flying spaghetti monster or whatever you all are into bless you all. You are a great group.
 
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Mister_James

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Indeed I became more religious but not in the traditional way. I dug deep into why do I believe what I believe.
I do believe there is an arrogance clothed in humility that mankind is special. That a particular group of mankind is special.
Since I cannot understand the divine plan, then focusing on it makes no sense. I will not comment on those who KNOW what God has planned for them.
I figured grow, find happiness, comfort and joy and spread the same as much as possible. Simply try hard not to be an asshole.
 

cldlhd

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I guess I'll weigh in, I'm a progressive Christian and I always like folks to know that we at least exist. I'm highly educated and I have a ton of respect for science. My sister (and best friend in the world and spectacular human) is an atheist. I'm strongly supportive of LGBTQ rights and my church has an enormous rainbow flag flying outside it. I think it's a height of arrogance for anyone to think they are in possession of the whole and only truth about something as immense as God. I choose to go to the dance, "with the partner who brought me," and deepen a spiritual side that humanity has always acknowledged by engaging in a spiritual community. (Preface.)

The original question on this thread was, did your heart experiences make you more religious? I'd say yes because of an experience I had. Unlike many others here I found out I had a heart condition more suddenly, when I developed congestive heart failure and pulmonary edema due to previously undetected mitral stenosis while pregnant with twins, started coughing up blood, was admitted to the cardiac unit, then taken via ambulance to a different hospital for a C-section at 27 weeks gestation -- all within 24 hours. I was in the main OR with more than a dozen people and it was clear to me that they were stressed and worried and that I might not survive, or my babies might not survive. Yet I felt an overwhelming calm and assurance that things would be okay that I couldn't explain and did not generate or expect. I didn't perceive I would live necessarily, simply that things would work out and that I did not need to worry. It was very intense and unexpected. I remember thinking, "Hot damn! Guess it was worth waking up all those Sundays." I still don't pretend to understand God but this body-felt experience has left me unafraid of death and is helpful for other problems as well. I was left afterwards with profound gratitude to still be alive, for the skills of my care team and plain good fortune. The experience has helped be be more grateful overall, which along with compassion and awe I consider to be the religious emotions. That was my experience of heart stuff and religion and if the OP is even here still, I hope it helps her. May God, Marcus Aurelius, the flying spaghetti monster or whatever you all are into bless you all. You are a great group.
I might not really agree but I wouldn't argue to have the thread closed as long as people aren't abusive towards each other. As to your thought about It being the "height of arrogance" to think one knows everything personally I think that is more a complaint to be lodged against religion. Science is of the mindset that we don't know everything but we continue to try to learn whereas religion has the good book handed down and those are the rules and that's that.
However ,I don't know if you read my post or not, as I said I can understand where having religious faith would be helpful through trying times like heart surgery. Going into it "knowing" or at least strongly believing everything will be all right because God is watching out for you and even if you don't make it through that's part of the plan and you will be in heaven would be much nicer than thinking if I don't make it it's eternal nothingness.... But the flip side is that doesn't necessarily make it a true story. For what it's worth I don't claim I know for certain either.
 

pellicle

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And to close the thread would be imposing your beliefs onto others more then the other way around.
I disagree.

this forum is about heart valve matters, to include such a well known divisive topic is essentially allowing your your personal views to be forced upon others.

There is any number of internet sites where you can go and sing the praises of your religion.

It is (or should be) as personal as politics and not be a forum topic.
 

tom in MO

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If discussing one's relationship with god in context of valve replacement surgery bothers anyone, don't read this thread.

Whether one believes in god, religion, animism, stoicism etc. that's cool. If it helps to handle life with valve replacement surgery and all that comes with it...that's good. Sharing that experience to help others is not bad.

I see many place science as above religion, but as a scientist, I can tell you that science is rarely absolute and objective. It's just as relative and subjective as religion or the many gods. Remember when eggs were bad for you? :)

It's a sad thing that some cannot believe that miracles are real and don't need to be related to religion, god or some unified theory or law of the universe. A belief in miracles and an existence other than the here and now is like water in a river, it lifts and moves you on. We cannot remember being in the womb, but we trust that we were there. Just because we cannot know what comes after death, doesn't mean there is nothing.

We are all stardust and cannot remember whence we came but can be assured we will continue on if only as stardust. Is matter a particle or is it a wave...no it's both...
 

pellicle

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I would disagree that He leaves/forsakes His own. I say that, firstly based upon His promise. I say it, secondly, based upon my own life experiences.
ok ...

I grew up in a religious home. My mother and father were both members of the church and we went to church every sunday. My mother also did work for the church such as sewing and clothing alterations on her own dime. My father was one of the men who helped gather doantations, he did many works for the church. We regularly had the clergy in our home. I used to believe in the whole thing and often discussed the concepts.

When I was at Uni in the 80's my best friend (whom I'd grown up with since about 6 YO) was diagnosed with cancer and over the course of a couple of years he died.
I lost a good friend and I struggled with that for some years. As I grew older I sawe that this was insignificant in comparison to his own family. His mother was bereft and father while more stoic suffered deeply. His sister went wild for a while but after some years recovered.

No parent should lose a child, if you think its trivial then I hope it happens to you, so that you understand it.

Was God clearly there to do something ... no.

I watched many people die over the years ... always having some reasons why it was "understandable".

My mother was very devout, but developed Alzheimers in her later years and after some years of withering to a husk died.

There can be no way to call that anything else than "forsaken". As her only child I cared for her but God didn't give a ****.

My Father too of course died ... of cancer.

Then my lovely wife dies of a brain tumor. Lets not discuss how I felt (I've written of that elsewhere) but lets look again at not just why a lovely character in her 30's dies of brain cancer, but lets look instead at her mother, her father, her sister. All deeply effected (still) by that.

Was God in any way there? Nope, forsaken. Her, her parents, her sister, her friends, me ... All of us.

Then there is my heart condition (oh, the almighty god had nothing to do with that) and my multiple surgeries ... God was not there for any of that it was science and human care.

The same science which all the religious folks through history have forsaken.

So when someone here comes through a surgery and first says "Praise be to God" I'm disgusted. Not first "thanks to the many people who have honed surgery, the iterative development of the techniques through human cooperation .... but a thanks to an imaginary image held by people who I believe are victims of a terrible meme, a hacking of the mind.

To me its easy to have a surgery (performed not by God but by humans) and attribute that to God. The reality is that God had nothing to do with it, instead it was the lessons learned from the hundreds of thousands of surgeries gone before, and somehow feel more religious. If your suffering had instead been the God gave it to you spiral of death perhaps you could simply die holding your rosary beads.

Now if people have some spiritual views (as indeed I myself do) then fine, but I'm quite clear about a few things

  1. God had nothing to do with why I'm still here
  2. God has not done a thing to help my family, my wife or her family
  3. Throughout my life it has been people who have helped me, and science that has given me a nice home to live in, a mobile phone for communications and machines to help my life.
The Christian centric view of the members of this site is a testimony to the appalling arrogance of humanity : its my view of God that's right.

Not so long ago the world was united against a disguting apparition of religion called ISIS. These religious zealots were quite sure that God hated everything that (probably almost) everyone on this site held dear, and if given a passive reception would have erased your society as well as the historical origins of their own (for the purposes of the purveyance of their own views of God).

If the members of this site think that Mech vs Tissue was a divisive topic, that's got nothing on the blood letting of Religion.

It only works if we all believe the same thing, that hasn't worked for human history.

So if you want to talk about how God has not forsaken anyone why not start with an honest dialog of those who have been forsaken. I believe this doesn't happen, and its seldom the case that those who have lost so many they love can stand up and explain why God took them and that is good. No that's usually side stepped into "God has a plan, its mysterious". Nice cop out.

I spent many many years after the death of my much loved wife and after recovery from the surgical infection (thanks to modern medicine I'm still here to think and to help others with their suffering) about this topic. I searched the views of many Priests and Rabbis (yep the Jews) and pondered this over the years as I fought back my health.

I can only conclude that of the Abrahamic stem the Jewish faith has the closest view to correct:

God made no promises, God demands your faith

that's it no hidden premises, no after life no "your sins are forgiven. Just obey me.

The idea that God offers salvation is the most perverted and insidious message one can imagine. Almost always used to pave the way for how the leaders of your flock deserve the power you give them and place no demands or expectations upon them.

So in a sense its correct ... God has forsaken nobody; because God never took you up. Just because God created you does not mean God knows about you, or will do anything in your favour. Only humans will do that.

And that folks is why we are all here ... trying to help each other. If you want to praise your religion go to your church and do so.

If you became more religious after surgery then great ... I would hope you perhaps also developed more appreciation of the efforts of the many humans who have helped keep you here. But I notice that seldom its that way.

And to @dick0236 I offer my apology that I stooped into the quagmire yet again. I offer only that if you haven't been tested as I have its perhaps hard to understand the passion I have for this vile political thing called religion.

I wish I could block this thread.

If anyone has anything specific to reply to this then I suggest that after you have been in my shoes, lost so many, lost so much, then you are welcome to discuss this with me. In the mean time please do go on with your discussion on how you've become more Religious and disrespect and diminish all the humanity that kept you alive to become that way.
 

cldlhd

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If discussing one's relationship with god in context of valve replacement surgery bothers anyone, don't read this thread.

Whether one believes in god, religion, animism, stoicism etc. that's cool. If it helps to handle life with valve replacement surgery and all that comes with it...that's good. Sharing that experience to help others is not bad.

I see many place science as above religion, but as a scientist, I can tell you that science is rarely absolute and objective. It's just as relative and subjective as religion or the many gods. Remember when eggs were bad for you? :)

It's a sad thing that some cannot believe that miracles are real and don't need to be related to religion, god or some unified theory or law of the universe. A belief in miracles and an existence other than the here and now is like water in a river, it lifts and moves you on. We cannot remember being in the womb, but we trust that we were there. Just because we cannot know what comes after death, doesn't mean there is nothing.

We are all stardust and cannot remember whence we came but can be assured we will continue on if only as stardust. Is matter a particle or is it a wave...no it's both...
Well I will agree with you in so far as if people don't want to discuss this subject they can avoid the thread So I'm not saying it should be removed but..... Science is far more objective than religion, your point about the eggs actually makes my point. Science changes its opinion when new information is discovered religion is the opposite. The ten commandments are written in stone not meant to be edited all of you read them clearly they are a bit dated..... Just like the parts about slaves behaving and listening to their masters but I won't get into all that.
Again I think it must be nice to have that unified theory and believe in miracles, I'm not saying it's 100% impossible but it just seems unlikely. I mean miracles are probably just misunderstood natural happenings. Like my great-great-great-grandfather would probably think Google maps was a miracle
 

cldlhd

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ok ...

I grew up in a religious home. My mother and father were both members of the church and we went to church every sunday. My mother also did work for the church such as sewing and clothing alterations on her own dime. My father was one of the men who helped gather doantations, he did many works for the church. We regularly had the clergy in our home. I used to believe in the whole thing and often discussed the concepts.

When I was at Uni in the 80's my best friend (whom I'd grown up with since about 6 YO) was diagnosed with cancer and over the course of a couple of years he died.
I lost a good friend and I struggled with that for some years. As I grew older I sawe that this was insignificant in comparison to his own family. His mother was bereft and father while more stoic suffered deeply. His sister went wild for a while but after some years recovered.

No parent should lose a child, if you think its trivial then I hope it happens to you, so that you understand it.

Was God clearly there to do something ... no.

I watched many people die over the years ... always having some reasons why it was "understandable".

My mother was very devout, but developed Alzheimers in her later years and after some years of withering to a husk died.

There can be no way to call that anything else than "forsaken". As her only child I cared for her but God didn't give a ****.

My Father too of course died ... of cancer.

Then my lovely wife dies of a brain tumor. Lets not discuss how I felt (I've written of that elsewhere) but lets look again at not just why a lovely character in her 30's dies of brain cancer, but lets look instead at her mother, her father, her sister. All deeply effected (still) by that.

Was God in any way there? Nope, forsaken. Her, her parents, her sister, her friends, me ... All of us.

Then there is my heart condition (oh, the almighty god had nothing to do with that) and my multiple surgeries ... God was not there for any of that it was science and human care.

The same science which all the religious folks through history have forsaken.

So when someone here comes through a surgery and first says "Praise be to God" I'm disgusted. Not first "thanks to the many people who have honed surgery, the iterative development of the techniques through human cooperation .... but a thanks to an imaginary image held by people who I believe are victims of a terrible meme, a hacking of the mind.

To me its easy to have a surgery (performed not by God but by humans) and attribute that to God. The reality is that God had nothing to do with it, instead it was the lessons learned from the hundreds of thousands of surgeries gone before, and somehow feel more religious. If your suffering had instead been the God gave it to you spiral of death perhaps you could simply die holding your rosary beads.

Now if people have some spiritual views (as indeed I myself do) then fine, but I'm quite clear about a few things

  1. God had nothing to do with why I'm still here
  2. God has not done a thing to help my family, my wife or her family
  3. Throughout my life it has been people who have helped me, and science that has given me a nice home to live in, a mobile phone for communications and machines to help my life.
The Christian centric view of the members of this site is a testimony to the appalling arrogance of humanity : its my view of God that's right.

Not so long ago the world was united against a disguting apparition of religion called ISIS. These religious zealots were quite sure that God hated everything that (probably almost) everyone on this site held dear, and if given a passive reception would have erased your society as well as the historical origins of their own (for the purposes of the purveyance of their own views of God).

If the members of this site think that Mech vs Tissue was a divisive topic, that's got nothing on the blood letting of Religion.

It only works if we all believe the same thing, that hasn't worked for human history.

So if you want to talk about how God has not forsaken anyone why not start with an honest dialog of those who have been forsaken. I believe this doesn't happen, and its seldom the case that those who have lost so many they love can stand up and explain why God took them and that is good. No that's usually side stepped into "God has a plan, its mysterious". Nice cop out.

I spent many many years after the death of my much loved wife and after recovery from the surgical infection (thanks to modern medicine I'm still here to think and to help others with their suffering) about this topic. I searched the views of many Priests and Rabbis (yep the Jews) and pondered this over the years as I fought back my health.

I can only conclude that of the Abrahamic stem the Jewish faith has the closest view to correct:

God made no promises, God demands your faith

that's it no hidden premises, no after life no "your sins are forgiven. Just obey me.

The idea that God offers salvation is the most perverted and insidious message one can imagine. Almost always used to pave the way for how the leaders of your flock deserve the power you give them and place no demands or expectations upon them.

So in a sense its correct ... God has forsaken nobody; because God never took you up. Just because God created you does not mean God knows about you, or will do anything in your favour. Only humans will do that.

And that folks is why we are all here ... trying to help each other. If you want to praise your religion go to your church and do so.

If you became more religious after surgery then great ... I would hope you perhaps also developed more appreciation of the efforts of the many humans who have helped keep you here. But I notice that seldom its that way.

And to @dick0236 I offer my apology that I stooped into the quagmire yet again. I offer only that if you haven't been tested as I have its perhaps hard to understand the passion I have for this vile political thing called religion.

I wish I could block this thread.

If anyone has anything specific to reply to this then I suggest that after you have been in my shoes, lost so many, lost so much, then you are welcome to discuss this with me. In the mean time please do go on with your discussion on how you've become more Religious and disrespect and diminish all the humanity that kept you alive to become that way.
That has always been the impossible question to me, not even to get into the scientific aspect of it, the fact that so many bad things happen to so many good people. Like a pedophile lives to a ripe old age and dies in his bed yet there's a child cancer ward in the hospital... Of course then you get the "works in mysterious ways" . I honestly don't know how people who go through that kind of stuff keep putting one foot in front of the other. There's an older guy down the street who is a great guy, He had a wife and four children, his wife recently died ( I'm not sure of their age but I'm pretty sure they're in their mid-70s so not entirely unexpected) But in addition to that they had four children together. Before his wife died many years ago their one daughter who was my age was shot to death by her boyfriend back when she was like 25 years old. That was probably about 27 years ago, before his wife passed away he lost his other daughter to cancer. He still has two sons left in the area though thankfully. But I think about him when I see him out mowing his lawn or I walk the dog past his house and the idea of losing two kids and your wife and now he's just living there by himself is just a horrible thing. So it does make you question as to why a God would take his only daughter he has left and his wife within a couple of years, why not take him first and spare him all of that?
I doubt we will come to a resolution of this subject out here though...
 

dornole

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Guess I shouda listened to Dick, I knew he was older and wiser than me!! Dammit!

Pellicle, I'm sorry that my experience opened a wound for you and I'll happily keep them off the forum in the future based on my respect and affection for you let alone any others. That is my commitment to you personally.
 

ddwheeler

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I live in Dallas, Georgia, in the United States. W
ok ...

I grew up in a religious home. My mother and father were both members of the church and we went to church every sunday. My mother also did work for the church such as sewing and clothing alterations on her own dime. My father was one of the men who helped gather doantations, he did many works for the church. We regularly had the clergy in our home. I used to believe in the whole thing and often discussed the concepts.

When I was at Uni in the 80's my best friend (whom I'd grown up with since about 6 YO) was diagnosed with cancer and over the course of a couple of years he died.
I lost a good friend and I struggled with that for some years. As I grew older I sawe that this was insignificant in comparison to his own family. His mother was bereft and father while more stoic suffered deeply. His sister went wild for a while but after some years recovered.

No parent should lose a child, if you think its trivial then I hope it happens to you, so that you understand it.

Was God clearly there to do something ... no.

I watched many people die over the years ... always having some reasons why it was "understandable".

My mother was very devout, but developed Alzheimers in her later years and after some years of withering to a husk died.

There can be no way to call that anything else than "forsaken". As her only child I cared for her but God didn't give a ****.

My Father too of course died ... of cancer.

Then my lovely wife dies of a brain tumor. Lets not discuss how I felt (I've written of that elsewhere) but lets look again at not just why a lovely character in her 30's dies of brain cancer, but lets look instead at her mother, her father, her sister. All deeply effected (still) by that.

Was God in any way there? Nope, forsaken. Her, her parents, her sister, her friends, me ... All of us.

Then there is my heart condition (oh, the almighty god had nothing to do with that) and my multiple surgeries ... God was not there for any of that it was science and human care.

The same science which all the religious folks through history have forsaken.

So when someone here comes through a surgery and first says "Praise be to God" I'm disgusted. Not first "thanks to the many people who have honed surgery, the iterative development of the techniques through human cooperation .... but a thanks to an imaginary image held by people who I believe are victims of a terrible meme, a hacking of the mind.

To me its easy to have a surgery (performed not by God but by humans) and attribute that to God. The reality is that God had nothing to do with it, instead it was the lessons learned from the hundreds of thousands of surgeries gone before, and somehow feel more religious. If your suffering had instead been the God gave it to you spiral of death perhaps you could simply die holding your rosary beads.

Now if people have some spiritual views (as indeed I myself do) then fine, but I'm quite clear about a few things

  1. God had nothing to do with why I'm still here
  2. God has not done a thing to help my family, my wife or her family
  3. Throughout my life it has been people who have helped me, and science that has given me a nice home to live in, a mobile phone for communications and machines to help my life.
The Christian centric view of the members of this site is a testimony to the appalling arrogance of humanity : its my view of God that's right.

Not so long ago the world was united against a disguting apparition of religion called ISIS. These religious zealots were quite sure that God hated everything that (probably almost) everyone on this site held dear, and if given a passive reception would have erased your society as well as the historical origins of their own (for the purposes of the purveyance of their own views of God).

If the members of this site think that Mech vs Tissue was a divisive topic, that's got nothing on the blood letting of Religion.

It only works if we all believe the same thing, that hasn't worked for human history.

So if you want to talk about how God has not forsaken anyone why not start with an honest dialog of those who have been forsaken. I believe this doesn't happen, and its seldom the case that those who have lost so many they love can stand up and explain why God took them and that is good. No that's usually side stepped into "God has a plan, its mysterious". Nice cop out.

I spent many many years after the death of my much loved wife and after recovery from the surgical infection (thanks to modern medicine I'm still here to think and to help others with their suffering) about this topic. I searched the views of many Priests and Rabbis (yep the Jews) and pondered this over the years as I fought back my health.

I can only conclude that of the Abrahamic stem the Jewish faith has the closest view to correct:

God made no promises, God demands your faith

that's it no hidden premises, no after life no "your sins are forgiven. Just obey me.

The idea that God offers salvation is the most perverted and insidious message one can imagine. Almost always used to pave the way for how the leaders of your flock deserve the power you give them and place no demands or expectations upon them.

So in a sense its correct ... God has forsaken nobody; because God never took you up. Just because God created you does not mean God knows about you, or will do anything in your favour. Only humans will do that.

And that folks is why we are all here ... trying to help each other. If you want to praise your religion go to your church and do so.

If you became more religious after surgery then great ... I would hope you perhaps also developed more appreciation of the efforts of the many humans who have helped keep you here. But I notice that seldom its that way.

And to @dick0236 I offer my apology that I stooped into the quagmire yet again. I offer only that if you haven't been tested as I have its perhaps hard to understand the passion I have for this vile political thing called religion.

I wish I could block this thread.

If anyone has anything specific to reply to this then I suggest that after you have been in my shoes, lost so many, lost so much, then you are welcome to discuss this with me. In the mean time please do go on with your discussion on how you've become more Religious and disrespect and diminish all the humanity that kept you alive to become that way.
Pellicle... I hear you loud and clear in all you have said. All of these things are indeed hard... difficult... especially if we have an expectation and desire that it should never happen. That tells us that we have an ingrained desire for there to be no death, no hurt, no loss, no anger, no a lot of stuff. That desire doesn't appear out of thin air. It is there for a reason and with purpose.

There is no way I can, or will, go through your entire post and answer every single topic/point, and you bring up a lot of good and legitimate and REAL questions. What I will say, to take it all to a foundational point, is that if and when somebody, anybody, can explain how all of what is in existence just came into being, and from nothing, and how we somehow came from that to this, surviving it all, then we can have a serious conversation about there being no God. If someone can explain how and why they have such a serious belief that life came from death (scientifically impossible), then we can have a serious conversation about there being no God. I believe that it is incredibly ludicrous to suggest such a thing, if we really look objectively at what is actually very simple and basic truths about what is staring us right in the face.

Nobody discredits a surgeon for their work if and when they thank God for their successful surgery. They simply see God at a more foundational level. The surgeon absolutely did what they did. But within the realm of the existence of God's creation. You can legitimately thank God and the surgeon, both at the same time.

We have a difficult time embracing God while all of the loss, hurt, pain, etc., is going on in this world. I would submit, though, that we probably have a bigger problem with the suggestion of sin, and what it entails, rather than actually having a problem with there being God. We are the problem, not God, and I mean that about every single one of us, myself being #1.

If there is no God, no basis of morality, no established right or wrong, then why do we even care what happens? Why does it hurt when we lose somebody, if there is nothing truly out there that gives us that ability to love, want, need? It hurts for a reason, and it isn't by random chance that it came about.

That suggests a lot of things. That suggests a lot of reality, things we cannot ignore or try to explain away. Interestingly, is that it is also our natural posture to first say "No" to a higher power, and all the while here we sit, existing, with a mind to even ask the question. We are ALIVE, a living, breathing soul, with the capability of loving someone enough that it would cause us that depth of pain, disappointment, hurt, for such a loss.

The fact that you and I are sitting here having this discussion is a suggestion that even in the face of such loss, there is still hope, still light in the darkness, still a reason to love just as deeply as you did before.

I appreciate that you shared the true depths of your heart in what you said. I read it and hear it, vividly. The fact that you said that you wish you could block this thread, that tells me of depth. I guess that's why I am here, right now, talking with you about it, Pellicle. I hope you understand the depth of what I mean in saying that. It isn't in any cynical nor negative sense, but quite the opposite.
 

tom in MO

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Joined
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Messages
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Location
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ok ...

I grew up in a religious home. My mother and father were both members of the church and we went to church every sunday. My mother also did work for the church such as sewing and clothing alterations on her own dime. My father was one of the men who helped gather doantations, he did many works for the church. We regularly had the clergy in our home. I used to believe in the whole thing and often discussed the concepts.

When I was at Uni in the 80's my best friend (whom I'd grown up with since about 6 YO) was diagnosed with cancer and over the course of a couple of years he died.
I lost a good friend and I struggled with that for some years. As I grew older I sawe that this was insignificant in comparison to his own family. His mother was bereft and father while more stoic suffered deeply. His sister went wild for a while but after some years recovered.

No parent should lose a child, if you think its trivial then I hope it happens to you, so that you understand it.

Was God clearly there to do something ... no.

I watched many people die over the years ... always having some reasons why it was "understandable".

My mother was very devout, but developed Alzheimers in her later years and after some years of withering to a husk died.

There can be no way to call that anything else than "forsaken". As her only child I cared for her but God didn't give a ****.

My Father too of course died ... of cancer.

Then my lovely wife dies of a brain tumor. Lets not discuss how I felt (I've written of that elsewhere) but lets look again at not just why a lovely character in her 30's dies of brain cancer, but lets look instead at her mother, her father, her sister. All deeply effected (still) by that.

Was God in any way there? Nope, forsaken. Her, her parents, her sister, her friends, me ... All of us.

Then there is my heart condition (oh, the almighty god had nothing to do with that) and my multiple surgeries ... God was not there for any of that it was science and human care.

The same science which all the religious folks through history have forsaken.

So when someone here comes through a surgery and first says "Praise be to God" I'm disgusted. Not first "thanks to the many people who have honed surgery, the iterative development of the techniques through human cooperation .... but a thanks to an imaginary image held by people who I believe are victims of a terrible meme, a hacking of the mind.

To me its easy to have a surgery (performed not by God but by humans) and attribute that to God. The reality is that God had nothing to do with it, instead it was the lessons learned from the hundreds of thousands of surgeries gone before, and somehow feel more religious. If your suffering had instead been the God gave it to you spiral of death perhaps you could simply die holding your rosary beads.

Now if people have some spiritual views (as indeed I myself do) then fine, but I'm quite clear about a few things

  1. God had nothing to do with why I'm still here
  2. God has not done a thing to help my family, my wife or her family
  3. Throughout my life it has been people who have helped me, and science that has given me a nice home to live in, a mobile phone for communications and machines to help my life.
The Christian centric view of the members of this site is a testimony to the appalling arrogance of humanity : its my view of God that's right.

Not so long ago the world was united against a disguting apparition of religion called ISIS. These religious zealots were quite sure that God hated everything that (probably almost) everyone on this site held dear, and if given a passive reception would have erased your society as well as the historical origins of their own (for the purposes of the purveyance of their own views of God).

If the members of this site think that Mech vs Tissue was a divisive topic, that's got nothing on the blood letting of Religion.

It only works if we all believe the same thing, that hasn't worked for human history.

So if you want to talk about how God has not forsaken anyone why not start with an honest dialog of those who have been forsaken. I believe this doesn't happen, and its seldom the case that those who have lost so many they love can stand up and explain why God took them and that is good. No that's usually side stepped into "God has a plan, its mysterious". Nice cop out.

I spent many many years after the death of my much loved wife and after recovery from the surgical infection (thanks to modern medicine I'm still here to think and to help others with their suffering) about this topic. I searched the views of many Priests and Rabbis (yep the Jews) and pondered this over the years as I fought back my health.

I can only conclude that of the Abrahamic stem the Jewish faith has the closest view to correct:

God made no promises, God demands your faith

that's it no hidden premises, no after life no "your sins are forgiven. Just obey me.

The idea that God offers salvation is the most perverted and insidious message one can imagine. Almost always used to pave the way for how the leaders of your flock deserve the power you give them and place no demands or expectations upon them.

So in a sense its correct ... God has forsaken nobody; because God never took you up. Just because God created you does not mean God knows about you, or will do anything in your favour. Only humans will do that.

And that folks is why we are all here ... trying to help each other. If you want to praise your religion go to your church and do so.

If you became more religious after surgery then great ... I would hope you perhaps also developed more appreciation of the efforts of the many humans who have helped keep you here. But I notice that seldom its that way.

And to @dick0236 I offer my apology that I stooped into the quagmire yet again. I offer only that if you haven't been tested as I have its perhaps hard to understand the passion I have for this vile political thing called religion.

I wish I could block this thread.

If anyone has anything specific to reply to this then I suggest that after you have been in my shoes, lost so many, lost so much, then you are welcome to discuss this with me. In the mean time please do go on with your discussion on how you've become more Religious and disrespect and diminish all the humanity that kept you alive to become that way.
Life is suffering and suffering is life. Every human relationship ends in tragedy (death, divorce, moving away); it's part of life. Most people take comfort in some spiritual things such as their religion, their god, their philosophy, nature, etc.. All humans have a coping mechanism, you have stated that yours is stoicism.
 
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pellicle

Professional Dingbat
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
Messages
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Location
Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
Hi

Pellicle, I'm sorry that my experience opened a wound
it wasn't actually anything you said. But yes discussions of this nature do open up wounds, especially the idea that God cares when all I see (looking around the world) is that its just full of suffering and God appears to do nothing about that. When I have never felt that care for me or anyone I've loved. That many of these people were devout followers of Christianity makes it even harder to comprehend.

There are many things I'd like to say in reply to various things, such things are freely discussed in Australia and Finland (and Japan, and Korea) yet there is a problem with me saying honestly what I feel. Telling me that "if I don't like it then don't read it" is not easy when it may not be confined to this thread. I wish it was.

Thankyou for your compassionate answer.

Best Wishes
 
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pellicle

Professional Dingbat
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
Messages
8,144
Location
Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
I doubt we will come to a resolution of this subject out here though...
indeed we will not.

To me the things I have gone through and the things I've seen (having lived in many places) make reconciling these things seem so complex as to make discussions about Trump vs Biden or Australian health care vs US Health care seem completely trivial, and yet there are some who get angry at me for making that discussion and yet I'm advised that if I don't like something don't read it.

Strange that it should always be me who is reported and have posts deleted for discussing facts (verifiable ones at that). It is bewildering to me that people who willing to discuss things so that are so visceral and so deeply felt with thoughtlessness are willing to call me names and report me for saying things about reality which are somehow offensive to them.

But I should just not read that.

Free speech and all that ...

:censored:
 

pellicle

Professional Dingbat
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
Messages
8,144
Location
Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
are you more religious now? I have to admit that over the years I have left the church and had even become cynical of organized religion. However, since my surgery I find that I am craving the experience of a church service.
No, actually my surgeries made no difference to my religious pathway. Like Michelle I became over the years more cynical of organised religion and see it as a political entity.

I have over my lifetime seen and experienced life events which have shown me that organised religion is nothing more than a political system; indeed worse its one which does almost no good that a proper liberal democracy does not do better (building roads, administering the law with human justice and providing health care).

I suppose this is because to me my surgeries were not "out of the blue" with no explanation. They were expected and I simply did what I had to do (which was less and less each time as more was done for me by the system). I did not pray at all for anything before any of my surgeries , although I was proudly shown by my mother the sheet from church where I was mentioned in prayers. I recall thinking at the time "well none of them actually helped you out" ...)

I have always had a spiritual side and felt that the only thing I took out of my Christian upbringing was that God is more complex than humans can understand. So I do not like to be told what the rules are for understanding God and how God may exist.

As an Australian there have been a number of taboos in social gatherings and one of them is discussing religion. Its considered personal and divisive. Perhaps this is because of the Irish heritage that looms large in an English Colony (and all the hatred and violence that has gone on and still goes on) in Ireland not least due to the Church of England vs Catholic issues. If you were to ask about religion in a pub in the UK you'd likely be met with strange looks.

Australians (and in my experience most people) are quite unlike the Americans who seem to think its proper to drag out such a subject and proudly vociferously announce their stance on such things. I guess its a cultural thing which it seems some feel comfortable with trampling over.

Yet I do detect a section of America (outside the bible belt) who wince at such things.

Were I to cry allahu akbar and declare my conversion to Islam and that I had a holy duty to slaughter unbelievers, adulterers and homosexuals, to either convert or subjugate the Children of the Book (which would be the Jews or the Christians) I would anticipate a bit of anxiety here. So "religion" is not as free as the naïve would like to think.

Some may think that being Stoic is a religion, it is not. It is simply a set of good psychlogical tools that help keep the mind focused.

Many things have occurred in my life which have led me to continue pondering the question of "is there more to life than simply to eventually die". I of course can't answer that question, but I have come up with questions but no answers.

Instead I focus my mind on what I can do, on how I can be a good person both to myself and to those around me. I do this because I believe its what has made humans successful creatures (yes, I appreciate the "creation" implication of that word). Understanding and developing my understanding is what I believe is what nature and society demand of us.

In my life I have witnessed many things, given aid to the dying, helped the living, been loved and loved, and have lost the most precious of gifts.

It is instead not my surgery which has had any influence on my being "religious ", its the experiences of life and death which have made me the antithesis of religious but remaining spiritual and open to my interpretations of what is Nature and Godliness.


To me to tell others what God is, is to pretend to understand what God is ... I am not that guy

Best Wishes
 
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