Rational religiousness, oxymorons all of you!

I still don’t understand why people feel they have to choose between Judaism, Christianity or Paganism, or any other supernaturally-based religion. If you believe in a God or Gods at all, why not believe in them all?

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I can understand atheists: if you don’t believe that any God or Gods exist, you just don’t believe. This is actually rational and sound, regardless whether you’re right or wrong in the end. You have a fair, 50/50 chance of being right. But non-Christian Paganists, or non-Pagan Christians, or any combination of the various God-worshipping religions … to believe in the possibility of even one God at all is a tremendous leap of faith, but to believe that you, personally, are able to accurately discern which of the many religions is correct and which God or Gods actually exist is either ignorant hubris or outright stupidity.

This all might sound like an argument in favor of atheism, but I feel that’s a cheap exit that shouldn’t be taken by anyone of intellectual integrity. What I actually wonder is why more people don’t argue in favor of omnitheism.

I have generally self-identified myself as an igtheist Lutheran. However, I’m not fully committed to that label, as igtheism is a very strong position that simply defers the conversation of God’s existance. More accurately, I’m an apatheist Lutheran: I enjoy being part of a community of Christians who value a personal understanding of faith and their relationship with God. It just so happens that my relationship with God is one of irrelevance. But, the people I commune with, many of the values we individuals share, our concern for the world and each other … these things I value.

However, pushing forward from apatheism to omnitheism is a huge leap. Am I “missing” something by not incorporating Gods into my life? How will I ever know if I don’t try? What do I have to lose by trying?

Apatheism is a very convenient position, but life without risk yields little reward. Clearly, I need to do more deep thinking about this and make some decisions.

Do you identify as an apatheist? Have you wrestled with the conundrum of whether to make the leap to omnitheism? Do you have a story to share? I’d love to hear from you.

Comments

  1. Hi Dossy,

    Just as a reminder, I’ve met you at a Meetup meeting in Fairlawn several weeks ago. I knew you were an opinionated sob in technology in general but didn’t realize you have the vengeance to piss off people of beliefs and non-beliefs 🙂 Awesome!

    I am enjoying your “ramblings” quite a bit.

    Coincidentally, I have been giving a lot of thoughts to this particular topic as well. I also have been questioning the notion of mono-god recently. Why do we automatically assume one god is better than two, or three? Why was there a unanimous agreement that all religion should believe in only one god (maybe except for Hinduism) around two thousand years ago. Is there a false assumption that we humans always change for the better? I’m sure my scholar inspiration Karen Armstrong will know but unfortunately I don’t.

    For me, given the context of relatively newer concepts like anthropological psychology and just plain fact that we are clueless about even the next level of dimension (i.e. time), I think we have absolutely no clue about anything especially when it comes to “god”.

    Even the concept of what god is, is a question for me. Is everything driven ultimate by fear of death? Maybe?

    Anyway, you have an awesome blog. BTW, your last post was also very interesting. Given all the tools that we have now as programmers, do you not see an app or another website somewhere to accomplish what you want to do?

    Looking forward to your next post and our next meet up where ever it may be.

    Kon

  2. Sorry, never mind.

  3. For me, I can’t see not believing specifically in beings bigger than me who can do shit for me because I do shit for them. I had believed this in Catholicism, but for me, Christian God must be, like, *massively* busy and has no time to hear my piddling requests for ponies and Scott Rainer when I was 13.

    I like the orishas and the hindu gods especially because the system is set up for hamsters/geeks like me: If you do x, then y god will give you z. Cause, effect. I’ve gotten into spellwork lately because it’s constantly little scientific experiments to see if I can make shit happen.

    But more than any of this, to me, god is about love. The love we have in ourselves, for each other, and in the divine. And when I’m not having a crazy day and I can really tap into that and really be aware of the divinity in myself and others, it’s pretty fucking awesome.

    It’s scary to believe because it’s a leap of faith. But if you can close your eyes and jump, not just off a cliff but *towards* something, it’s worth it, to me at least.

    • For me, Jim Morrison’s succinct lyric sums up my attitude towards the Judeo-Christian “God” —

      “You cannot petition the Lord with prayer.”

      A God, any God, who is so moved by my prayer is no longer more powerful than me. I should bend to God’s will; God should never bend to mine. You cannot petition the Lord with prayer.

      I don’t understand why the cause-effect process requires an intermediate God. If I do x, y happens. Belief that there’s a middling God in between gives people something to blame for undesirable outcomes and that’s a cop-out. It’s important to own your actions and be accountable for what happens; don’t take the escapist route of assigning that responsibility to some God-thing.

      In the end, I agree, all of this should lead us to love, that intangible thing that is a cause and effect itself, cannot be seen or often defined, captured, objectified but is all around us even when we don’t believe it. God is Love.

  4. Well with things such as all the deaths in Haiti, and al the other things going on, all those people who never thought they would die that day, hopefully it makes people think. I’ve heard that an estimated 150,000 die every 24 hours, and 42,000 a year in car accidents in the U.S. My fiance actually died in a car accident two weeks after we got engaged. We never really think that each time we get in a car or whatever it could be the last…

    So what do you think happens when you die?

    Let me please share with you that if you have ever lied, stolen, lusted (which Jesus said is adultery in heart), or hated (Bible says if you hate you are a murderer). Then the Bible tells us that God is so good and his standard so high that you are a liar, thief, and an adulterer and murderer at heart. If you have broken any of the 10 Commandments, of which we’ve covered only 4, then you will be guilty on Judgment day, and when you die you will go to Hell. God is perfect and holy, a human judge wouldn’t be a good judge if he let a rapist and a murderer go free, and God is a good Judge, but he won’t only punish murderers and rapists, but liars, thieves, drunkards, etc. However, God is not only good and just, he is also merciful and loving. He sent his Son, Jesus, to be beaten and slain on the cross. He then rose from the dead the third day defeating death. It was a legal transaction. You broke God’s law, but Jesus paid your fine. Turn from all sin today and trust in Jesus Christ alone (not in any deeds you do, etc.) and God will legally dismiss your case, he will forgive all your sins and grant you everlasting life. Please read the Bible daily and obey what you read. Thank you so much for reading this. (needGod.com is a great site to check out)

    Jesus himself said that he is the way, the truth, and the life, and that no man comes to the Father, but by him. You see the difference between Jesus of Nazareth and Buddha, etc. is that Jesus Christ actually, truly, and literally, rose from the dead, with over 500 eye witnesses and infallible proofs to prove it. Even historical and non-Biblical records shows this to be true.

    The other difference? Only Jesus Christ has power to forgive sins, he said that the he had the power to forgive sins on earth, and God testified to that fact.

    But we so often have a wrong undersatnding of God, in fact we break the 2nd of the 10 Commandments, we create a false God in our minds, that suits our sins, and that will not punish us.

    A judge that turns a blind eye to the mafia is not a good judge, but a corrupt judge. The goodness of God that is justice is carried out.

    The Bible says in I believe 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God. It says be not deceived, for neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor covetous, nor extoritioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

    Jesus said that there would be many who would say Lord, Lord, thinking they would get into heaven, but he would say depart from me I never knew you, and they will go into everlasting punishment.

    He also said that it is not they that say Lord, Lord, that will inherit the kingdom of God, but those that do the will of his Father in heaven.

    It is easy enough to prove that God exists. When you look at a building how do you know it has a builder? The building itself is 100% scientific proof there was a builder. The same thing is true of a painting. How can you know there was a painter? Well the painting itself proves there was a painter, even if you have never met him, seen him, or don’t even know his name. You couldn’t want better proof.

    Creation proves that there is a Creator.

    And Hell is completley reasonable. Do you think Hitler shoudl be punished for all the murders he is responsible for? Would it be just to just let him go free? Of course not. God will punish all sin, which is all violations of his law. The Bible says that you will have to give account of every idle word you’ve spoken. God knows every secret sin you have done.

    Also most people, even most professing Christians, aren’t really saved, they don’t understand what Christianity is. Christianity isn’t a philosophy, or a way of life, or a belief.

    The Bible says that eternal life is to know God and to know his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible says he who has the Son has life.

    Christianity is to know Jesus Christ, not to believe that he exists, or that he is the Son of God etc., but to actually know him.

    Think of this story. I child is sitting in a room next to a space heater. His dad tells him not to touch it because it is hot. The kid says okay, the heater is hot. He now has a head knowledge that the heater is hot. After the dad leaves the room, the kid decides to see if it really is hot. He reaches out his pink little fingers to the red heater bar, and as soon as he feels it burn his tender flesh, he has now experienced it, he now knows the heater is hot. A scientist could come right in and explain scientifically why it is impossible for the heater to be hot, but the kid isn’t a fool, he has experienced it.

    Someone once said that the man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with an argument.

    Want to work the works of God, to do his will, so that you can be saved? Want to see if the claims are true? Then obey God, repent, turn from all your sins, and put your trust in Jesus Christ alone.

    Don’t just believe in him, trust in him with all your heart.

    If you were going to jump out of an airplane, you wouldn’t just believe in the parachute, you’d put it on. The Bible says put on the Lord Jesus Christ.

  5. couldn’t really read through all the replies… I guess because you are not jewish you have no idea what Judaism is all about.. Simply put…. I will never leave the faith; it is part of me just like my arm is part of me.. I can counter-analyze till the end of time that’s just the way it is. If you don’t know who you are then search, search, search, and perhaps change. If you do know who you are and where you came from then you have no reason to change.

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