Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
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04-03-2017, 10:48 PM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
Nope. To me that feels fuzzy-minded and a bit twee.
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05-03-2017, 02:10 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(04-03-2017 01:40 PM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  So when I first joined on here, I questioned if I could still be considered an atheist....

So basically, a rose by any other name?

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
Banjo.
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05-03-2017, 06:22 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(04-03-2017 07:22 PM)Unbeliever Wrote:  The brain-as-receiver hypothesis does not fit the data.

While I realize this hypothesis is not the simplest and is therefore is less likely, I would be interested in how it doesn't fit the data.
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05-03-2017, 08:08 AM (This post was last modified: 05-03-2017 08:26 AM by Celestial_Wonder.)
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(04-03-2017 08:12 PM)mordant Wrote:  
(04-03-2017 01:40 PM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  So there's that, my question is now, do any of you believe in something divine? If yes or no, why or why not?
There is a concept that some people use called (usually capitalized) The Divine, which is to be distinguished from "divine" the adjective. It is sort of a metaphor for something that provides subjective feelings of transcendence of the human condition. It means different things to different people. It might pull in various new-agey concepts like nondual awareness or egolessness. It may or may not involve specific beliefs in deities, but it tends to be wooish and subjective and involves some form of disengaging the intellect.

Personally I see no need for such things. I see the concept as a way of clinging to one's status of special snowflake that is often drummed into people by religion, and/or clinging to overdetermined idealism in general.

The only way you can actually transcend human limitations is to not be driven all over the map by the rampant confirmation bias and cognitive distortions and primal emotion-laden drives that is part of being human -- but rather to systematically control for these as much as possible. To be fooled as little as possible. I wish people would focus on reality rather than try to escape from it.

If the brain perceives consciousness or as others have said here 'act as a receiver' that would mean 'consciosness' exists outside of the body and therefore would not be subject to the mortality of the body. In such a case, and if it were the base element of the entire universe. There would be no escape from reality. Consciousness will be perceived perpetually, even if your body dies, and it will continue to be perceived for all eternity. An eternity full of hardship, pain, and suffering, and everything you've worked for in this life, all the knowledge and experiences you've accumulated will be lost, who 'you' are which are concepts made by your brain will be lost, and this will happen time and time again.

It is a future I find bleak and futile. However it does serve to do one thing for me, on the off chance that 'I' become aware once more on this planet as a human being, it drives me to try and make the world a better place, that way if I am to become aware again in the future here, it will be a little easier on that variation of awareness.

But yes I can see how appealing being dead forever has a certain appeal and charm to it especially when you see the current affairs of this world and the prospect of being born as an impoverished homeless person who is always hungry and has only the clothes on their back, can't afford medicine or treatment if they catch a disease or injure themselves, living in the cold and the rain. I understand how one might much prefer to be dead rather than to 'live' like that.

To be perfectly honest with you, my beliefs kind of scare the hell out of me. Because if I'm right then this awareness does not limit itself to 'the human condition' but to all sorts of animals. Deer have it relatively good in the animal world, their deaths are either from disease, getting hit by a car, or shot by a hunter. Two of those deaths are usually very painless. However if I were aware again as someone's pet... I know just how cruel some people are to their 'pets' or their livestock. Especially their livestock. I think the fact that I am aware right now as a human being in a first world country with a comfortable job must have been like winning the fucking lottery in terms of whatever hell kind of roulette this awareness bases itself off of. You would be incredibly lucky to hit a jackpot even once. Say something like the powerball, but you would likely not hit it a second time for a very very very long time.

What I do know is that my odds of being aware as a human being twice in a row are not very good.

Best case scenario I'm aware again as a mosquito, then I can bug the shit out of someone as they try to sleep.
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05-03-2017, 08:32 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  If the brain perceives consciousness or as others have said here 'act as a receiver' that would mean 'consciosness' exists outside of the body and therefore would not be subject to the mortality of the body.
Maybe, but it could also mean other things. Some conceive of consciousness like a vast ocean in which we are but drops. In that scenario, a variant on what I call "the cosmic sock puppet" scenario, whatever is distinct (makes you, "you") about your consciousness is subsumed into this ocean on death, like a raindrop falling in the sea. At some point, some bits and pieces of you may find expression in some other human but there would be no coherent memory of your past life and in fact that would not even be meaningful to talk about because the exact piece of consciousness you are now will never express itself again.

See how easily you can spin that all sorts of ways?
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  In such a case, and if it were the base element of the entire universe. There would be no escape from reality. Consciousness will be perceived perpetually, even if your body dies, and it will continue to be perceived for all eternity. An eternity full of hardship, pain, and suffering, and everything you've worked for in this life, all the knowledge and experiences you've accumulated will be lost, who 'you' are which are concepts made by your brain will be lost, and this will happen time and time again.

It is a future I find bleak and futile.
This is exactly why I always say that any eternal afterlife eventually (rather quickly, really) becomes its own hell. At least it does unless hedonic tone and other things that make us what we are, are altered in ways that would alter US beyond recognition. Since most people are interested in preserving their humanity and individuality as-is, I think this pretty much decimates the value proposition behind afterlife beliefs.
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  However it does serve to do one thing for me, on the off chance that 'I' become aware once more on this planet as a human being, it drives me to try and make the world a better place, that way if I am to become aware again in the future here, it will be a little easier on that variation of awareness.
I find the same drive despite not expecting it to benefit a future post-death self that I don't believe is at all likely. Because I care about my children and grandchildren and people who will survive me in general. I can still have empathy for them, if not for myself.
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  But yes I can see how appealing being dead forever has a certain appeal and charm to it especially when you see the current affairs of this world and the prospect of being born as an impoverished homeless person who is always hungry and has only the clothes on their back, can't afford medicine or treatment if they catch a disease or injure themselves, living in the cold and the rain. I understand how one might much prefer to be dead rather than to 'live' like that.
That is basically my take on it. I find oblivion to be comforting. Not least because I am a creature of time. Creatures of time need narratives with beginnings, middles, and, yes, ends. I don't want to keep having new experiences without limit. It's beyond my ken.
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  What I do know is that my odds of being aware as a human being twice in a row are not very good.
No, so bad in fact that they are functionally zero. But be careful what you wish for ;-) As I said, every eternity becomes its own hell.
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05-03-2017, 08:57 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
I don't believe that such terms have any objective meaning. I am awe struck by it, but that doesn't translate into a property.

If it was designed, I'd be a lot less awe struck. I'd be unimpressed.

I have a website here which discusses the issues and terminology surrounding religion and atheism. It's hopefully user friendly to all.
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05-03-2017, 08:58 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(05-03-2017 08:32 AM)mordant Wrote:  This is exactly why I always say that any eternal afterlife eventually (rather quickly, really) becomes its own hell.

Consciousness was made for life, so it would be maladapted to any static afterlife.
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05-03-2017, 09:22 AM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(05-03-2017 08:32 AM)mordant Wrote:  
(05-03-2017 08:08 AM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  If the brain perceives consciousness or as others have said here 'act as a receiver' that would mean 'consciosness' exists outside of the body and therefore would not be subject to the mortality of the body.
Maybe, but it could also mean other things. Some conceive of consciousness like a vast ocean in which we are but drops. In that scenario, a variant on what I call "the cosmic sock puppet" scenario, whatever is distinct (makes you, "you") about your consciousness is subsumed into this ocean on death, like a raindrop falling in the sea. At some point, some bits and pieces of you may find expression in some other human but there would be no coherent memory of your past life and in fact that would not even be meaningful to talk about because the exact piece of consciousness you are now will never express itself again.

See how easily you can spin that all sorts of ways?

This is exactly why I always say that any eternal afterlife eventually (rather quickly, really) becomes its own hell. At least it does unless hedonic tone and other things that make us what we are, are altered in ways that would alter US beyond recognition. Since most people are interested in preserving their humanity and individuality as-is, I think this pretty much decimates the value proposition behind afterlife beliefs.

If there was one redeeming quality behind my belief, it is that there wouldn't be a single trace of my old awareness left. As you said it would be a new expression entirely. Which would be the only thing keeping all those aware from going absolutely mad with insanity or their brains exploding. And honestly given the extreme potential for the sheer amount of how many expressions one could remember, they may find a lot of those memories absolutely horrifying which would haunt them for eternity.

Quote:I find the same drive despite not expecting it to benefit a future post-death self that I don't believe is at all likely.

Not likely, but not impossible.

Quote:No, so bad in fact that they are functionally zero. But be careful what you wish for ;-) As I said, every eternity becomes its own hell.

I don't believe this because it comforts me, I believe it because I think it is the most likely answer. What I do know is that it has happened once for me at least, this awareness, and there is nothing going against it happening again. Perhaps even supporting the opposite.

For there would be as many expressions as possible, and that possibility is infinite. Ergo there would be an infinite amount of expressions. And therefore an infinite amount of chances for this phenomenon which happened to me when I was born, to happen again.
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05-03-2017, 03:45 PM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
(04-03-2017 01:40 PM)Celestial_Wonder Wrote:  Granted my beliefs don't exactly make nature divine, they are just my preconceived notions. Limited in their articulation by a limited vocabulary.

Not so much a limited vocabulary... more like a limited number of brain cells LOL.

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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05-03-2017, 04:00 PM
RE: Do you believe in the divinity of nature/life?
I have never seen any credible evidence to support the notions that the universe is divine or that it is a living entity.
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