Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
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18-12-2013, 06:05 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(18-12-2013 09:07 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  Okay, found it. I've shared this in several threads:

Evidence for me being elect:

Growing up, I was always embarrassed of Christianity and whenever my parents talked about Jesus. I thought church was silly, and I found the stories nothing more than fantasy.

I finally accepted agnosticism in college as my official belief, and I began to rip Christianity apart with the use of logic and rationality. I would combat Christians on the Internet via forums and use the aforementioned tactics against them to make them look like fools. I was good at it.

Driving home from work one day, my life changed. My heart was opened to a higher power; even though I didn't know whom. I'll try my best to explain this: I found myself suddenly and sincerely praying and listening to this higher power for guidance. This was wholly strange to me because up until that moment I didn't believe in a God that I could talk to.

My beliefs so drastically changed than I began to get angry with myself. I didn't understand how I could rationally accept that there was a higher power that I could converse with. It wasn't logical. Also, I never wanted to talk to a higher power, and I didn't understand how I was doing it if I didn't choose to. My knowledge of religion pre-empted the idea that I had to choose it.

The higher power led me to read and study the Bible. This was the first time that I’ve ever actually done it. It was at this time that I realized that the higher power I was talking to was the Christian God; however, I still didn’t understand why I didn’t get a choice. As my studying intensified, I began to learn about election. And then, it made sense. I realized that then reason I didn’t have a choice is because I was never planned to have a choice.

I knew that I was elect because I learned that those who are elect can hear the will of God and those that aren’t cannot even understand it.

So, that’s my evidence. I guess the most concrete part of it is the fact that my beliefs radically changed and became cemented by no choice of my own.

Ah yes, I remember this thread. It was either in this thread or a related one. You exposed yourself. I probed a little. We learned much about each other. *sigh*

Cigarette?

He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy! -Brian's mum
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18-12-2013, 06:58 PM (This post was last modified: 18-12-2013 07:03 PM by WeAreTheCosmos.)
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
I've had sleep paralysis and hypnagogic hallucinations... If I were religious or an idiot, I'd likely think it was demons, angels, or aliens. Very convincing and intense. Its like you're still dreaming but are awake (and occasionally paralyzed), and entities from the dream are projected on your surroundings. Like shadow figures around you moving in... Or more commonly, spiders. I prefer the spider ones (which seem to be incredibly common), because I'm not afraid of spiders (even cat sized gravity defying ones), but am afraid of ninjas in my room.
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18-12-2013, 07:35 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(16-12-2013 06:12 PM)thedudette Wrote:  
(16-12-2013 05:59 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  Wishful-thinking.

They so desperately want their bullshit to be true.

Notice how it is always the god they already believe in who they see.

I remember watching the magic sandwich show (For the life of me I can't remember what number the episode was) but a born again man called the show and was talking to DPR about how he was an atheist and his girlfriend brought up Jesus. Then he says that Jesus appeared before him... He says that his experience is different from those who saw other religious figures because his vision "changed his life."

I also remember watching a video on Youtube a while back about a girl who could paint Heaven. Her mother was an atheist so I suppose they were meaning to imply that the girl was freethinking at the very least.

I wish I had a nickle for everytime I heard that "I was an atheist until...." claim. It is a common jesus freak bullshit argument. Lying for jesus is an old trick with these fuckers.

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18-12-2013, 09:24 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(18-12-2013 07:35 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  
(16-12-2013 06:12 PM)thedudette Wrote:  I remember watching the magic sandwich show (For the life of me I can't remember what number the episode was) but a born again man called the show and was talking to DPR about how he was an atheist and his girlfriend brought up Jesus. Then he says that Jesus appeared before him... He says that his experience is different from those who saw other religious figures because his vision "changed his life."

I also remember watching a video on Youtube a while back about a girl who could paint Heaven. Her mother was an atheist so I suppose they were meaning to imply that the girl was freethinking at the very least.

I wish I had a nickle for everytime I heard that "I was an atheist until...." claim. It is a common jesus freak bullshit argument. Lying for jesus is an old trick with these fuckers.

Have you seen "the girl who can paint heaven" video?
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18-12-2013, 10:19 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
Quote:He saw no
contradiction between religion and neurology -- if God works on a man, or in a man, Cicoria felt,
He would do so via the nervous system, via parts
of the brain specialized, or potentially
specializable, for spiritual feeling and belief.

The lengths to which we go to just to keep belief in god is astounding. And god continues to be unfalsifiable.

8000 years before Jesus, the Egyptian god Horus said, "I am the way, the truth, the life."
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18-12-2013, 10:47 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(16-12-2013 03:36 PM)thedudette Wrote:  This a question that I've been wanting to ask for awhile.

If they aren't lying about the experience then what could it be?
Hallucinations?

If anyone has an article about this I'd be happy to read it!

I wouldn't say they are lying, they are just reading too much into things that have happened to them. Case in point: my mother fell asleep at the wheel while driving home one night. She veered into the next lane and woke up before she hit an oncoming truck. She claims she heard the voice of a woman tell her: "It's time to wake up, dear." She believes it was my dead great aunt, her so-called "guardian angel." She claims that is one of several "personal experiences" that let her know that God is real. However, she was most likely in lower level REM sleep where her body was asleep but her mind was aware enough to realize she was about to be in a crash.
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19-12-2013, 02:11 AM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
I'll tell you why people are so convinced that they've seen a deity; it's because we actually have photographs of her.

[Image: gwyneth-paltrow-max-factor-180413.jpg?itok=-5VzaH0u]

Gwynnies! Heart

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19-12-2013, 05:51 AM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(19-12-2013 02:11 AM)Vosur Wrote:  I'll tell you why people are so convinced that they've seen a deity; it's because we actually have photographs of her.

[Image: gwyneth-paltrow-max-factor-180413.jpg?itok=-5VzaH0u]

Gwynnies! Heart

She is beautiful! Drooling
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19-12-2013, 01:14 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(18-12-2013 10:47 PM)ghostexorcist Wrote:  
(16-12-2013 03:36 PM)thedudette Wrote:  This a question that I've been wanting to ask for awhile.

If they aren't lying about the experience then what could it be?
Hallucinations?

If anyone has an article about this I'd be happy to read it!

I wouldn't say they are lying, they are just reading too much into things that have happened to them. Case in point: my mother fell asleep at the wheel while driving home one night. She veered into the next lane and woke up before she hit an oncoming truck. She claims she heard the voice of a woman tell her: "It's time to wake up, dear." She believes it was my dead great aunt, her so-called "guardian angel." She claims that is one of several "personal experiences" that let her know that God is real. However, she was most likely in lower level REM sleep where her body was asleep but her mind was aware enough to realize she was about to be in a crash.

Hmmm. I might find her story more convincing if your dead great-aunt had screamed at her "WAKE THE FUCK UP OR YOU'RE GONNA DIE!"

He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy! -Brian's mum
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19-12-2013, 04:34 PM
RE: Why are people so convinced that they've heard/seen a deity?
(16-12-2013 04:52 PM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  
(16-12-2013 03:36 PM)thedudette Wrote:  This a question that I've been wanting to ask for awhile.

If they aren't lying about the experience then what could it be?
Hallucinations?

If anyone has an article about this I'd be happy to read it!

As i strive to understand how people can believe in astonishing things with little credible evidence, I have come up with a scenario...I call it the church of the purple unicorn...bear with me..

Lets say i approach you, we have been friends/co-workers for a long while, and I am visibly excited. I tell you how I was invited to a meeting, a group called CPU, and they showed me some exciting things, and I wanted to invite you to the next meeting. (no it isnt AMWAY ) So I convince you to come, and you meet a nice group of uber friendly people who give you hearty handshakes and beaming smiles. Once all the pleasantries die down, and some food has been demolished, they start telling you about how an archaeologist had discovered an ancient text in a cave, and it described a purple unicorn that flew across the sky, and farted rainbow sprinkles, bestowing wishes for all those who truly believed. he did this until the non beleivers found him, and killed him, but as the believers stood weeping around his body, it started to glow, and *gasp* rise into the air, and with a whinny and a toss of his tail, he rose into the sky and as he disappeared he said, I will return, and bring you to paradise. These 12 believers were astonished and told everyone the story, they gained followers here and there....people are always drawn to smiles and excitement, and will pretty much believe anything, or pretend to, so they can be part of the group.

Now years later, this secret group has decided to spread the good word to the world, and you can get in on the ground floor! With much fanfare and drama, they whip aside a golden curtain and show you a golden telescope, they reverently beckon you to look into it..."look, and you can see him for yourself"...you look incredulously into it, but alas, dont see anything but the sky. You tell them you dont see anything, they give each other knowing looks and say "ahhh he only shows himself to those who truly believe, think hard about your belief, suspend your doubt, look again" then you get a gathering of folk behind you, slapping you on the back and nodding their heads....you look through the glass again...and even though you dont see anything, you start to think, there must be something to this...maybe I am just not ready yet....but you turn and gasp aloud "oh my unicorn! I see him, and he is glorious!". they all circle you and much merriment happens. they give you a copy of the BOOK OF UNICORN to cherish and study. Be strong, the non believers will question your faith, they are the enemy, and strive to steer you off the course of true enlightenment.

--------------------------------

Now this was totally pulled out of my ( i ) obviously, but there is a valid point I think. Is this how people get sucked into these belief systems? psychologically I mean.. I understand the desire for fellowship, to belong to a group, to be part of something bigger than you....your thoughts? Why do people profess to believe such astonishing things.....with zero proof besides a book and some philosophy of those who were also members of the group? I have always wondered this, I have never felt the need to be in a group, a huge need for belief in something in order to be able to face our basic human fear of death..and the unknown...death will come, and then I will be in final rest as my body rots and my consciousness fails with my last breath...I dont need to clutch a belief of golden roads and condos on the beach in paradise, or 72 virgins if I die as a martyr for Muhammad, or any other reward for believing something that seems so astonishingly hard to believe. The fact that the book is loosely tied to actual historical timelines is just an attempt to make it sound believable.

I think that some people do have "visions" that they will not explain away, and since they perceive the "fruit" of such visions to be helpful and good they conclude the visions to be good and then accept them as literal representations of truth, not just some random or convenient concoction of the brain.

As long as they respect the autonomy of others to draw their own conclusions about their own experiences, and everything else that results from mutual respect, I think that them basing a such personal belief system on a vision is not unreasonable. I kinda consider that a (potentially lifelong) experimenting over a hypothesis.
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