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OfflineTannis
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Registered: 12/13/01
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To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ?
    #622081 - 04/29/02 10:57 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

So what does your belief or choice not to believe do for you?

What's your payoff...for say believing in God, or for not believing........or lets leave "God" out of it and discuss another topic...it really doesn't matter.....

Everyone has life experiences......we believers can't scientifically prove the existance of the God we believe in, or in any of our other beliefs.....can't show them to others outside our own perceptions, and experiences....information, whether presented to counter each other can be debunked by the other side with an arguement that begins with a different premise......
skeptics exist in a world of logic and "show me" experiences, and relate how they have tried to believe but found the evidence lacking.....believers sight personal experiences and state that "you had to be there".......

But reguardless of your position as believer or skeptic......there is a pay off of some sort.........we "get something" in return for our position......maybe hope for some, maybe safety for others.....maybe protection from being "taken".....or maybe finding hope in a hopeless situation....

What's your PAYOFF for the position you take?


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InvisibleSwami
Eggshell Walker

Registered: 01/19/00
Posts: 15,413
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #622094 - 04/29/02 11:17 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

maybe protection from being "taken"...
That would be the closest "payoff". Yet there is no emotional satisfaction in trying to cut thru any possible B.S. to find what, if anything, is real. However, I will not reverse my stance just to make myself feel good. No matter what you believe in, it can be shown to believer and skeptic alike, that self-deceipt is the norm rather than the exception. (See my latest response to LearyFans' "Being stared at" thread.) Because misperception is a large part of human nature, I require strong evidence, not merely fun stories.

I really see no difference between people getting taken in stock scams or by religious masters or fortune tellers; both want to believe and take what they perceive to be the shortest route to their goal.

Most skeptics are NOT party-bashers, and are just as sincere as "believers" in trying to find/touch the mysterious.


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



The proof is in the pudding.


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OfflineJPAtanat
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Registered: 04/17/02
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #622097 - 04/29/02 11:24 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I would like to share a quote regarding doubt and belief.
It is from the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche:

"I sometimes think that doubt is an even greater block to human evolution than desire and attachment. Our society promotes cleverness instead of wisdom, and celebrates the most superficial, harsh, and least useful aspects of our intelligence. We have become so falsely "sophisticated" and neurotic that we take doubt itself for truth, and the doubt that is nothing more that ego's desperate attempt to defend itself from wisdom is deified as the goal and fruit of true knowledge. This form of mean-spirited doubt is the shabby emporor of samsara, served by a flock of "experts" who teach us not the open-souled and generous doubt that the Buddha assured us was necessary for testing and proving the worth of the teachings, but a destructive form of doubt that leaves us nothing to believe in, nothing to hope for, and nothing to live by.
"Our contemporary education, then, indoctrinates us in the glorification of doubt, has created in fact what could almost be called a religion or theology of doubt, in which to be seen to be intelligent we have to be seen to doubt everything, to always point to what's wrong and rarely ask what's right or good, cynically to denigrate all inherited spiritual ideals and philosophies, or anything that is done in simple goodwill or with an innocent heart."

The type of doubt described here is pretty well embodied by some people here at the shroomery, and it pretty well sums up my feelings about it.


Peace.


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InvisibleSwami
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Registered: 01/19/00
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: JPAtanat]
    #622100 - 04/29/02 11:32 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Please post your take on the difference between belief and gullibility; or if you prefer: doubt and discrimination.


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



The proof is in the pudding.


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OfflineJPAtanat
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Swami]
    #622105 - 04/29/02 11:42 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I will use another quote for that:
"If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything. In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few." -Suzuki roshi, from Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind

Ideally, I keep myself empty and open to all possibilities, because systems of logic and doubt, or any mental formations whatsoever result in error. With an empty mind we may see clearly. It is a mind that is neither doubtful nor gullible, for it simply sees what IS. From that wisdom arises, and it terms of making discriminations, I would chose to have wisdom over even the greatest knowledge.

Peace.


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Anonymous

Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: JPAtanat]
    #622114 - 04/29/02 11:55 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

All of you are amusing in your own way. So very serious in trying to puzzle it all out.The part trying to grok the whole is so absurd, that it makes me laugh. Neither of you realizing that both sides are mistaken. I will give you a little secret: cosmic humor is the highest teaching.

If you ask ridiculous questions, then the answer must be equally ridiculous. Forget emphasizing your separateness. Look inside your brother and find that place where you touch.

Have a holy day!


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OfflineJPAtanat
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: ]
    #622220 - 04/29/02 02:07 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I was not trying to emphasize my seperateness, and I don't think the question was either. In fact I think that the question may have been attempting to find some common ground between the two ostensibly opposed "camps."

And for those of us who have not yet realized the highest teaching, we must content ourselves asking "ridiculous" questions, and at least on some level "try to puzzle it all out."


Peace.


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Anonymous

Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #622262 - 04/29/02 03:14 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Perceptions and experiences should not be confused with knowledge, they are but the beginning of knowledge. First of all, they are incomplete, secondly they are colored by perspective.

Logic is not a source of knowledge but a step in understanding. You can use perfect logic, but if there is an invalid premise the conclusion is meaningless.

Anyone that adheres to either perception or logic as a final determinant of truth may not find it. To avoid being deceived by your perceptions your gift of reason is essential. For logic to be valid, you must experience creation as fully as possible, you must seek out all that is. If you miss something, your logical conclusions will be grounded on incomplete foundations.

Do not find a beliefact and think that it is the answer, each beliefact is but a stepping stone on a continuous journey of exploration and growth. You cannot complete the journey in this lifetime. You're gonna' have to trust me on this one.


Love,

The Lord


Edited by Anonymous (04/29/02 03:18 PM)


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OfflinecHeMiCaLbLuE
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Registered: 04/07/02
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: ]
    #622633 - 04/29/02 11:20 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

I find that to drop every belief breeds a whole set of new ones which leads me to a point of no point, but it sure trips me out on the way.


--------------------
insanity with a plan, a plan to stop exercising truth as compared to breathing thin air, but to experience truth as all there is to experience, for what do i not already have that exsists? All i can do is enjoy the ride.


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InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: cHeMiCaLbLuE]
    #622849 - 04/30/02 04:29 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

What if belief is the only choice we have.

Free will vs. determinism.
We have to believe in one or the other.
Neither can be proved, so we have to take a leap.

I don't know if there is a benifit to believeing one or the other.
But most of us choose free will without any evidence.
I believe that the fact that most of us choose free will is evidence of its truth.

JPAtanat,
I enjoyed those quotes, especially the "theology of doubt"

God,
How do you know that you are not a "part trying to grok the whole"?



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OfflineTannis
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #622966 - 04/30/02 09:33 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Several people have pointed out that whether you believe or choose not to believe.......all of us are very alike and looking for something that is real.

Blind faith or actual proof enable us to believe in something we can align ourselves with......

Both skeptic and believer are sincere..........we are all searching for truth and seem to find it in different ways......

The question is, even when we find truth by either path, have we found the whole truth or a part of it?
Some would argue that there is no truth to find........
What's a life for.......???????????????

Different people. Different thoughts, perceptions, experiences both good and bad.......beliefs, doubts, attitudes, taking a stand for what you believe.......are we destined to be a warlike people because of our variations?
Will brother ever stand shoulder to shoulder with brother in anymore than an "I'll agree to disagree" frame of mind?

I miss my brothers and sisters.......


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OfflineLOBO
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Registered: 03/19/01
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #623329 - 04/30/02 04:52 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

"All truths are semi truth?s"
The Kybalion.

Perhaps the wise choice will be not to have an opinion at all, and let things unfold, in due time they will show there true meaning.
To deny or to believe are the same thing just opposite poles.


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


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Anonymous

Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: infidelGOD]
    #623700 - 05/01/02 01:59 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

infidelGOD,

In answer to your question, 'How do you know that you are not a "part trying to grok the whole"?'

Sometimes, like you, I am the whole trying to grok my part (in my earthly incarnations).


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InvisibleJellric
altered statesman

Registered: 11/08/98
Posts: 2,261
Loc: non-local
Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #623735 - 05/01/02 02:54 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

It seems to me that to "believe or not believe" is a false choice.
You need a balanced approach.

Cynic = unbalanced skeptic.
Zealot= unbalanced believer.

Each is one pole of a sphere.
Each unknowingly doubts its own correctness, attacking the other to see who "wins".
Opposites attract.
They attract because they seek balance.
Thesis + Antithesis = Synthesis
The one needs the other like a bird needs two wings.
Heaven = balance, a state of peace

The material world is in a constant state of unrest due to conflict between pairs of opposites.
See the duality for what it is and converge.
Or choose to continue fighting! The resistance will only push you to one end of the spectrum where you will experience an unending lack of peace.


--------------------
I AM what Willis was talkin' bout.


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OfflineJustFootsteps
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Jellric]
    #623798 - 05/01/02 06:28 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

HO!

that is the best post i've read in a while :smile:

fear breeds anger breeds violence breeds hate breeds <---repeat until it makes perfect sense and your head explodes and you stop striving

verbal violence is more dangerous than physical, because it is more insidious and slow-acting.  ben franklin said we should be most weary of tyrants with good intentions; anyone can recognize the danger of a big tough guy with a knife and muscles, but GWB is way fucking scarier to me.


--------------------
in peace,
just footsteps
http://www.whyvegan.org


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InvisibleSwami
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Registered: 01/19/00
Posts: 15,413
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: JustFootsteps]
    #623873 - 05/01/02 09:59 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

verbal violence is more dangerous than physical
Let's take the Swami Verbal Violence Challenge and test your theory. A believer gets the choice to

A. Get grilled by a roomful of skeptics on his pet belief.

B1. Walk through the roughest neighborhood in his city at 3AM on a Friday night.

B2. Wear an American flag while walking down the streets of Palestine.

Please choose.

anyone can recognize the danger of a big tough guy with a knife and muscles, but GWB is way fucking scarier to me.
Huh? This segue has NOTHING to do with verbal violence. I lost all respect for you (as a debater) with this completely erroneous example. GWB is scarier than a guy with a knife, not because of words, but because he has a Napoleanic complex and commands nuclear weapons and the best trained and equiped armed forces in the world. The threat of physical violence to any that oppose him is real.

You talk out of both sides of your mouth and make no sense.




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



The proof is in the pudding.


Edited by Swami (05/01/02 10:07 AM)


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OfflineTannis
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Registered: 12/13/01
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Last seen: 13 years, 8 months
Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Jellric]
    #624005 - 05/01/02 01:39 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Great post! I whole heartedly agree. You've hit on an important point.....but what happens when the balance is tipped?

What I mean is.....take me.....I see, hear, sense, and feel things that not many around me see, hear, sense or feel.
I walk into a place and "get" information about it, or see a person and know things that have happened to them or things about to happen.

I would have to say that I am definitely "tipped" in the direction of believer but can't prove my experience to others.
I didn't chose this end of the spectrum......it was thrust upon me.....


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OfflineJustFootsteps
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Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Swami]
    #624069 - 05/01/02 03:12 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

verbal violence is more dangerous than physical, because it is more insidious and slow-acting. ben franklin said we should be most weary of tyrants with good intentions; anyone can recognize the danger of a big tough guy with a knife and muscles, but GWB is way fucking scarier to me.

i dashed this post off on the cuff while slightly hung over and it's clear to me that i left out several steps in my thinking as i was in a somewhat poetical type mood and/or striving for concision to avoid having to type a lot.  :smile:  so i'll answer your remarks and then go into more detail...

verbal violence is more dangerous than physical
Let's take the Swami Verbal Violence Challenge and test your theory. A believer gets the choice to
A. Get grilled by a roomful of skeptics on his pet belief.
B1. Walk through the roughest neighborhood in his city at 3AM on a Friday night.
B2. Wear an American flag while walking down the streets of Palestine.
Please choose.


would it surprise you if i said B1, or would you think I'm being coy to annoy you? :smile:  i frequently do B1, and i quite enjoy it.  but that wasn't really my point.  the damage of a verbal violence is not its impact on the individual in the moment; it is a slower violence.  instead of getting stabbed and bleeding to death and dying, i get emotionally wounded into silence and complacency that can last a lifetime.  the danger of verbal violence is that it intimidates people during their efforts to express their fragile poetic inner sanctum.

verbal violence takes many forms.  underestimating someone's abilities is a violence, and so is lying, and so is bragging... anything that puts the other person on the defensive and transforms a conversation into a debate is a violence.  in a debate one person can be stronger and another weaker, and the weaker will usually be forced to leave the conversation in bewildered defeat.  this is not necessarily because he was WRONG but because he lacks the resources to 'win.'

[related anecdote]i went vegetarian in high school but didn't study about it.  i couldn't make my case and eventually gave up in the face of ridiculing challenges i lacked the information and poise to answer.  several years later i rediscovered compassionate consumption through a friend and studied voraciously on the subject; now the situation is reversed and i find i have to back off and not try to 'best' people while we're talking about this subject.[end]

in a conversation, the weaker can observe the stronger and learn his tactics for telling a good yarn about his opinion (i learned a great deal in this manner during long stoned conversations with a friend), but he will never be made to feel inferior because he hasn't mastered that skill yet, and so he will continue to try to contribute to conversations in the future because he thinks he might improve himself.

verbal violence, whether as quibbling, dominating a conversation, rigidity of viewpoint, or any of the other forms one might eventually conjure, is dangerous not because of the sting it causes at the time to the individual (ouch, i lost the conversation, someone thinks i'm stupider than they are, maybe i am, etc.).  adults get over emotional stinging.  it's harmful because it creates an atmosphere of exclusivity and insists that the intellectual arena, the world of words, is only open to the extremely rigorous, analytical/logical type and experts.  there are many other people with inklings of good ideas and useful stories whose personalities don't lend themselves to this kind of writing/speaking.  shouting them down, or tuning them out, etc. segregates discussion of an issue with several sides from the conversational mode that such things are best discussed in.  it moves us away from the DIY gumbo of a group think, where everyone shares their side, and moves us toward listening to one person bark out answers and take no questions.

Huh? This segue has NOTHING to do with verbal violence. I lost all respect for you (as a debater) with this completely erroneous example. GWB is scarier than a guy with a knife, not because of words, but because he has a Napoleanic complex and commands nuclear weapons and the best trained and equiped armed forces in the world. The threat of physical violence to any that oppose him is real.

it does have to do with verbal violence.  the point of the franklin quote is that anyone can recognize and oust an overtly selfish tyrant; his style of rule is all oppression and violence and divine right of kings stuff.  he looks and smells like a rat; people know him for what he is.  this is like the big tuff street thug.  a street thug is obvious, direct, to the point.  physical violence has its political counterpart in overt tyranny, like a street thug or a despot.  verbal violence is insidious; its counterpart is, for instance, the advertising doubletalk of Our Corporate Overlords or the pandering pablum of public politics.  GWB doesn't scare me because he has nukes or because he's going to start WWIII; a controlled perpetual low-level war is much better for the economy than an ideological schism type war, and what's good for the rich guys is good for GWB.  what scares me about bush is what scared me about reagan.  he says stupid, pandering, opiating things and people listen.  he is a great shield for Our Corporate Overlords, just like reagan, because he seems too oblivious and dundering to be involved in anything sinister or dangerous, even though he is.  the verbal violence of the Invisable Police State, the oligarchy, the no-don't-be-silly-there-was-no-one-on-the-grassy-knoll style of government, has counterparts in the individual world - scam artists, religious frauds, educators who squelch kids until they won't think... it's a form of mental rape.  but other forms of verbal violence manifest in different ways.  skepticism is like being mentally bludgeoned and robbed, slowly but surely losing your life force.  the only option is to fight back, but you risk further injury and losing more possessions if you don't run away.

i'm stoned and this post is way long. :smile:  i doubt if it will clear up what i was trying to express very well, but it was fun to write.

may day in london was AWESOME!  anarchist street carnival with toys, music, freaks, children, and kindbud.  oh, and a bunch of righteous anger at the podium *shrug*  stopped listening years ago, i just go and devil stick and entertain the peoples.

time to go do uh... i'm bored with typing :laugh:

WALNUT SALSA IN THE FRENCHSECTION!!!


--------------------
in peace,
just footsteps
http://www.whyvegan.org


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InvisibleJellric
altered statesman

Registered: 11/08/98
Posts: 2,261
Loc: non-local
Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: Tannis]
    #624344 - 05/01/02 10:11 PM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Tannis:
"I didn't chose this end of the spectrum......it was thrust upon me....."
-------
I take your point.
But I don't see you as someone who's rabidly trying to convert everyone to your world view.
Also, from what I have read of your posts, your experiences seem to be internally consistent with the beliefs you've expressed.
So I don't see you as being unbalanced at all.
And if you are "tipped" to the believers side..well that's okay too.
I'd rather hang out with a believer any day.
They're much more fun!


--------------------
I AM what Willis was talkin' bout.


Edited by Jellric (05/01/02 10:16 PM)


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Anonymous

Re: To Believe, or Not To Believe...That Is The ? [Re: JustFootsteps]
    #624481 - 05/02/02 01:07 AM (14 years, 7 months ago)

Verbal violence?

It seems like this is this just another way of saying that you lack the intellectual ability or strength of convictions to provide a sensible response to those who may doubt the truth or rationality of your words.

Do you want to be protected from the sharp piercing thoughts of those who question you? Are you afraid that your mind is too weak to handle the concept that you may be wrong? Do you tremble at the prospect that in the battle of wits, you are unarmed?

Welcome to the world of intellectual discourse. If you can't handle the heat, get out of the kitchen.


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