• PoeticUniverse
    733
    So, from there definitely being something, a lack of anything is precluded, and from existence having no opposite that can be, we get that there is an Eternal Existence, this matching God's nature as First and Fundamental, with all else then being of it; but, we can't reason the desired jump from the Eternal Existence to be a complexity of a system of Mind, for only the partless simplex can be elementary, such as the simple continuous wave of a field.

    Compounding the above, what is eternal has no input, making its outputs to be random, as we note in Quantum Mechanics, but which we can still presume as everything possible happening from it, this granting creatorship and the resultant transitions by laws that get formed at higher and higher levels.

    In the superpositions of all that is possible, as our logical and new 'God', although reduced from our ultimate imaginings, all the paths get followed, but some don't amount to much, while others continue on, this brute force necessity of a method not having to impossibly foresee any specific, workable direction, but still ensuring that one will be found, as ours was.

    This new 'God' works for the essential notions as a kind of a lowercase god but at least the contradictions are gone, making for more satisfaction.

    Let us praise the creative potential of the Eternal, if that still does something for us, or at least be awed.
  • S
    11.8k
    I can't take you seriously at all.uncanni

    I can't take you seriously at all, either, because you say things like this:

    God is a state of mind. God is praxis. God is not institutionaluncanni

    And this:

    Rejection of God = human violence/sadism. Absence of God = complete self-engrossment, psychopathic narcissism. Instant gratification at any cost. Because the strongest and most aggressive can.uncanni

    And this:

    I'm in the process of coming up with a post-patriarchal, post-gendered, kabbalistic/buddhist/pagan/derridian feeling of the oneness, the echad.uncanni

    And this:

    My favorite French Psychoanalytic Feminist Philosopher Luce Irigaray wrote that women's language must disrupt and confound until men are able to tune into a different frequency and understand.uncanni
  • uncanni
    251
    Let us praise the creative potential of the Eternal, if that still does something for us, or at least be awed.PoeticUniverse

    Compounding the above, what is eternal has no input, making its outputs to be random, as we note in Quantum Mechanics, but which we can still presume as everything possible happening from it, this granting creatorship and the resultant transitions by laws that get formed at higher and higher levels.PoeticUniverse

    I will drink and vape to that. Essentially, infinitely and eternally, God is quantum mechanics and so much more.
  • S
    11.8k
    But then you are just not using the word God in its normal sense. Someone who refers to their teapot as God and insists that on their definition the teapot qualifies is simply using a common term with a well understood meaning in a misleading way.Bartricks

    Yes, you're absolutely right. It irritates me when people do that. Do you think that they think that they're being clever or inventive?
  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    I will drink and vape to that. Essentially, infinitely and eternally, God is quantum mechanics and so much more.uncanni

    Yes, indeed, hail to the Source. We didn't arrive at 'infinite' though, at least not yet.
  • uncanni
    251
    You're just too irritable, probably bilious. You have a lot of anger, and maybe you're really angry at women. You probably hate feminism; it probably makes you really angry.

    But I don't really believe that you're angry about these things; there's something else, underneath, that governs your anger and cruelty. You could have asked me a question at any time, and I would have been glad to clarify. But if I'm correct and you hate women--or you just hate me specifically--, then there's absolutely nothing that I can say.

    All I want to do here is dialogue with people, have my ways of thinking transformed and influenced by the brilliant thoughts of others. This isn't graduate school anymore; this isn't a job where people treat you like shit; this isn't the family in which you were perhaps treated like shit. So it's all you know: how to hate and try to get others to hate you.

    I refuse to hate you; as a matter of fact, you no longer have my pity. You have my compassion and you even still have my desire to dialogue with you.

    One final thing that needs clarification, because I can see that you are correct and some of what I posted wasn't clear at all: I think I've sketched my current feelings and perceptions of what God could be, and I agree with what Poetic Universe has written as well.

    What I didn't explain is that part about what goes on with humans, which isn't about God, but about human behavior and psychology. When people express a lot of anger and hostility, it's like an addiction, and it gets worse and they need more and more anger and hostility. One of the many biblical stories like it is the Israelites making the calf of gold as soon as Moses trundled up the mountain. There are all of these things that can take me away from love, which I really like to practice with others, and they are all false idols which, in the past, have alienated me from myself, from authentic relationships with other people and from Everything (i.e., God).

    When I've been mean to others, it's like a loss of soul, a process of dehumanization and a concurrent ability to dehumanize others. Then I'm a bit demonic. On one end of the spectrum, you get psychopaths like Dahmer, and towards the other end, you get, for example, professors and parents who take pleasure in demeaning and belittling the people over whom they have power. I've been teaching college students since the end of the 70s, and while I've lost my temper and my patience many times, I was never one of those professors who took pleasure from putting down grads or undergrads. I've always been appalled by that type of bullying.

    This is my definition of human evil (in a nutshell, I could expand, but not here): the desire to inflict harm and suffering on others; the derivation of pleasure or a sense of satisfaction from such behavior. I could go on, but this is long enough. Talk to me, S.
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    To some peoples it is as you have variously described and to others "god" is a quite small bit player. The elements Zhoubotong lists only refer to a subset of candidates for "God" even with a capital G.Fine Doubter

    Nope. Just attempting to separate 'god' from everything else THAT WE ALREADY HAVE A NAME FOR.

    Otherwise, you get any powerful or knowledgeable entity counting as 'gods'. Once they count, why wouldn't, say, a pharaoh, or Stalin, or 'the internet' count? This has been addressed in nearly EVERY sci-fi show/movie. If everyone wants to be vague and metaphorical in their descriptions, fine...but it seems cowardly.
  • Hanover
    5k
    Can we come to an agreed description of God, or is that just a pipe dream?Pattern-chaser

    I'm reading a book about the curious religion of Mormonism, where they describe a corporeal anthropomorphic God, fully endowed with all human attributes, including not just eyes and ears, but emotions. The trinity to them is that there are three separate gods, making it polytheistic. God is not actually the creator to them, as they believe matter has existed for eternity, with God simply organizing what there has always been.

    So what is God universally? I don't think there is such a thing. Even within religions, you have disagreements, especially as religions evolve over time. There was a time when Judaism was not monotheistic, although today it rests upon that as its defining characteristic.
  • S
    11.8k
    ...and maybe you're really angry at women.uncanni

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha.
  • uncanni
    251
    We didn't arrive at 'infinite' though, at least not yet.PoeticUniverse

    I thought we did arrive at Infinite. I don't think infinity is all the same; I think there's probably infinite variation.
  • fresco
    549
    :smile:
    These disputes about the viability of description of 'God' are of course grist to the mill for those who base their atheism on the potential social perniciousness of the concept.
  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    perniciousnessfresco

    Holy smokes! An obscure word! And just after the pleasant old country mill image. What a shock.

    In this thread, I guess we mostly aim only for the plans for a workable 'God' for all, but perhaps the grinding of the axe at the mill toward religious belief's harm ever slips in. I think that 'God' is highly improbable. Live and let live, unless asked for an opinion.
  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    I think there's probably infinite variation.uncanni

    Or at least all that's possible, which is still a heck of a lot.
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    I don't seek consensus--especially not about God. I explain my terms as best I can and will be glad to expand and clarify.uncanni

    Hmmm, based on the thread title, I thought "consensus" was the whole point of this thread. After Pattern-chaser's responses, I had to re-read and I am now aware I read the whole thing wrong (not sure why he went with that title), but anyway...

    If we are not seeking consensus (some sort of shared understanding), why would I be interested in the explanation? I really don't mean that dismissively or rhetorically. I am sure you are a wonderful person, but I am not here to get to know people. If I am not trying to get you know you, and we are not seeking a shared understanding...what other reason would there be for an explanation?
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    One needs to establish a sound ground first, such as the necessity of eternal existence, and build on it from there, which informed us that there can be no information coming into what had no beginning and was never made.PoeticUniverse

    Please be patient with me. I struggle to understand you. I will try to restate in words I understand...

    So you are saying one necessary description of 'god' is that it must be eternal? And "complete' throughout all of eternity?

    On a side note, apparently, I am a VERY literal thinker. I have largely hated poetry my whole life. That doesn't mean that others don't appreciate it, so I tend to just avoid getting in discussions with you, as I have been amazed at how well you live up to your screen name. Whether written in stanzas or not, all of your writing seems rather poetic to me.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.5k


    I think a place to start is can we say that God can be a metaphor for "what is" (aka metaphysics)? Does God have to have a telos (a universal end or goal)? Does God have to involve some sort of mystical understanding?

    If God is simply a metaphor for "what is", then I think that is a starting place. From here we can perhaps examine things like point of view. What is the world without the point of view of a self? In other words, what is the view from anywhere, everywhere, and nowhere? So far we can only imagine views from a subjective self, but not anywhere, everywhere, and nowhere.
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    Perhaps belief just spreads too far to accommodate in one description? :chin:Pattern-chaser

    As that is CLEARLY the thrust of your argument, the OP seems a bit disingenuous?

    The whole thing just seems designed to make fun of atheists who are interested in the concept of god. How dare they. You certainly got me :smile:
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    I think a place to start is can we say that God can be a metaphor for "what is" (aka metaphysics)?schopenhauer1

    First, I am interested in all this, but I want to get right to the point. Feel free to call me stupid, but please don't get offended and stop arguing (same goes for @PoeticUniverse, @Pattern-chaser, @uncanni and everyone else).

    Ok, but if 'god' is a metaphor then it doesn't actually impact our reality (at least not any more than any other fictional being that one might believe is real), right?

    Does God have to have a telos (a universal end or goal)?schopenhauer1

    Not a requirement for me.

    Does God have to involve some sort of mystical understanding?schopenhauer1

    Not sure. Can you give me an example of mystical understanding? I am probably making it far more complicated than it needs to be

    If God is simply a metaphor for "what is", then I think that is a starting place. From here we can perhaps examine things like point of view. What is the world without the point of view of a self? In other words, what is the view from anywhere, everywhere, and nowhere? So far we can only imagine views from a subjective self, but not anywhere, everywhere, and nowhere.schopenhauer1

    Correct me where I am wrong...doesn't this line of thought start with admitting there is no god? If it is JUST a metaphor for 'what is' then it is ONLY a metaphor....? I am fine with this, but I doubt many of the theists will be?
  • schopenhauer1
    3.5k
    First, I am interested in all this, but I want to get right to the point. Feel free to call me stupid, but please don't get offended and stop arguingZhouBoTong

    I wasn't arguing, at least in this thread or yet rather :).

    Ok, but if 'god' is a metaphor then it doesn't actually impact our reality (at least not any more than any other fictional being that one might believe is real), right?ZhouBoTong

    Well, I should say a "stand in", a synonym maybe for "what is the case". As for being not real, it depends on how we want to limit the concept. For example, Plato had a concept of "The Good" but Zeus, Hera, Apollo, Dionysus, Pan, and all the other Greek deities and demigods were floating around too. Plato's The Good seems more like a metaphysical statement and the Greek deities (pre-Socratic at least) seemed more like traditional gods of some transcendental kind that looks after human affairs and creates the universe and all that. So are we rejecting things like metaphysical statements and keeping deities, or is the field relatively open?

    Not sure. Can you give me an example of mystical understanding? I am probably making it far more complicated than it needs to beZhouBoTong

    Oh prophetic visions, some divine communion sensation, otherworldly beings, otherwordly trances, otherwordly visions, revelations, feelings of oneness, out-of-body experiences, things like that.

    Correct me where I am wrong...doesn't this line of thought start with admitting there is no god? If it is JUST a metaphor for 'what is' then it is ONLY a metaphor....? I am fine with this, but I doubt many of the theists will be?ZhouBoTong

    Right, theists generally believe there to be an aspect of a transcendent being usually to be considered "God". But if we are in the realm of something like Plato's The Good, or Spinoza's God, Schopenhauer's Will, Whitehead's process theology, and other metaphysical foundational ideas, then the field is opened up to more than just "some transcendent being that creates and cares what humans do".
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    I wasn't arguing, at least in this thread or yet rather :)schopenhauer1

    Haha, well once I am in the picture, it is only a matter of time.

    Well, I should say a "stand in", a synonym maybe for "what is the case". As for being not real, it depends on how we want to limit the concept. For example, Plato had a concept of "The Good" but Zeus, Hera, Apollo, Dionysus, Pan, and all the other Greek deities and demigods were floating around too. Plato's The Good seems more like a metaphysical statement and the Greek deities (pre-Socratic at least) seemed more like traditional gods of some transcendental kind that looks after human affairs and creates the universe and all that. So are we rejecting things like metaphysical statements and keeping deities, or is the field relatively open?schopenhauer1

    Now that I am starting to understand you (I think?), I think I am on board. You are getting into all of the concepts or ideas that god or gods have ever represented and including them in a potential description of god...right?

    Oh prophetic visions, some divine communion sensation, otherworldly beings, otherwordly trances, otherwordly visions, revelations, feelings of oneness, out-of-body experiences, things like that.schopenhauer1

    oh. Duh. I was thinking of how to describe god in a mystical way, vs "learning" about it using mystical methods.

    Right, theists generally believe there to be an aspect of a transcendent being usually to be considered "God". But if we are in the realm of something like Plato's The Good, or Spinoza's God, Schopenhauer's Will, Whitehead's process theology, and other metaphysical foundational ideas, then the field is opened up to more than just "some transcendent being that creates and cares what humans do".schopenhauer1

    I think this sounds rather interesting and I have never considered looking at 'god' from this perspective. But rather than referring to it/them as god, couldn't we just say "metaphysical foundational ideas" and our communication would be more clear?

    I like it, but I really don't see any theists (or even many agnostics) agreeing to this description of god?
  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    So you are saying one necessary description of 'god' is that it must be eternal? And "complete' throughout all of eternity?ZhouBoTong

    Yes, as not a smart evolved alien but as Fundamental and First, intact and complete, with no beginning and no end, as eternal, since something exists, obviously, and that Existence has no alternative that can be. Even if we were only philosophically discussing what 'IS', not 'God', those attributes would still apply, and so it's a good starting point. It's like Parmenides’ unity in multiplicity idea sort of.
  • ZhouBoTong
    507
    Yes, as not a smart evolved alien but as Fundamental and First, intact and complete, with no beginning and no end, as eternal, since something exists, obviously, and that Existence has no alternative that can be. Even if we were only philosophically discussing what 'IS', not 'God', those attributes would still apply, and so it's a good starting point. It's like Parmenides’ unity in multiplicity idea sort of.PoeticUniverse

    Logically...isn't there no more reason for an eternal god as there is for one that just popped into being? If this paragraph was supposed to provide that logic, I am not seeing it. Seems more like fancy restatements of your position?

    How do we know that all that 'is' is eternal?

    Hypothetically, IF (big if, I get) the big bang was the start of the universe then your argument would be that the permanent nothingness that existed before that was 'god'? And because by your definition 'god' is 'all that is' then after the big bang, all of that is still 'god'? Couldn't the lower case 'existence' capture everything you are saying in simple everyday language?
  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    How do we know that all that 'is' is eternal?ZhouBoTong

    Since it cannot be made from the impossible 'Nothing' nor can it make itself, it just 'is', as ever, without beginning or end. If we still really want to have something from nothing, then there had to be some way, some potential or capability, which is something, and so we didn't really have nothing in the first place as we claimed. That's just to doubly close the idea, for 'nothing' cannot even be meant, which is Parmenides' great claim.

  • PoeticUniverse
    733
    And because by your definition 'god' is 'all that is' then after the big bang, all of that is still 'god'?ZhouBoTong

    Yes.

    Couldn't the lower case 'existence' capture everything you are saying in simple everyday language?ZhouBoTong

    Yes, and that is looking more and more as what 'god' really boils down to, without us making big unwarranted jumps to more. Instead of "I am what I am", "Existence is what it is."
  • schopenhauer1
    3.5k
    I think this sounds rather interesting and I have never considered looking at 'god' from this perspective. But rather than referring to it/them as god, couldn't we just say "metaphysical foundational ideas" and our communication would be more clear?

    I like it, but I really don't see any theists (or even many agnostics) agreeing to this description of god?
    ZhouBoTong

    Yes we can. This is why I ask these questions.
  • fresco
    549

    :grin: 'Existence is what is'...is a phrase that would have the 'E-Prime movement' rolling in the aisles since their philosophical mission statement was to proscribe the word 'is' !

    If interested in 'existence', I invite you to visit or revisit my entry discussion ...
    https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/5901/existence-is-relative-not-absolute
  • uncanni
    251
    Hmmm, based on the thread title, I thought "consensus" was the whole point of this thread.ZhouBoTong

    Did you really think there would be consensus about this topic? If I'm limited to express what I think will fulfill the expectations of the readers, then my writing will be subject to all the wrong influences. I must express my understanding of God and see how it connects--or not--to others' ideas.
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    Hmmm, based on the thread title, I thought "consensus" was the whole point of this thread. After Pattern-chaser's responses, I had to re-read and I am now aware I read the whole thing wrong (not sure why he went with that title), but anyway...ZhouBoTong

    I thought consensus, or something close, was the idea too. I called it what I called it because that's what I was looking for, if it was/is there to be found?
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    The whole thing just seems designed to make fun of atheists who are interested in the concept of god. How dare they. You certainly got me :smile:ZhouBoTong

    No, it wasn't/isn't. I'm sorry if it seems that way to you. :yikes:
  • uncanni
    251
    I thought consensus, or something close, was the idea too. I called it what I called it because that's what I was looking for, if it was/is there to be found?Pattern-chaser

    So does this restrict the kinds of propositions about God that one can put forth? I thought I was getting close to consensus with at least some folks, while others were never seeking consensus.
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