Sick of asking why and having no answer
I've gotten to the point in my theological and philosophical self-study that I feel like I've kind of lapped myself. By this I mean that I am coming to a lot of the same conclusions that I had before I went through becoming involved with an Evangelical Christian church. I'm running into the same exclusivist mentality of others; the same "I'm right you're wrong" attitude that I rebel violently against. But I've also found that I'm sick of arguing about it. What's the purpose of trying to convince people that what they believe in might be true but isn't certain? Is there value in it?
I think there is always value in debate because it everyone to confront why they hold their belief even if you both believe the same thing. Do you accept something because you were told it or have you come to this conclusion by your own research?
The problem as I see it is that belief is not about looking at the evidence. Belief ends the debate in your own head about something.
So when there is no certainty in either direction I think the value of having someone explain their beliefs is less important than having them explain what led them to that conclusion.
If they can do that they must have considered both sides of the argument which should mean they are aware of the lack of certainty. So the question not longer becomes WHAT they believe but WHY they believe it.
And if someone is unable to explain that then that is where the value of the teaching comes in.
Feb 8, 2007 2:14 pm
When was the last time you talked to someone who could explain why they believed something when it came to matters of faith and spirituality? It's a tough question and I'm not ridiculing it or us but it's one that gets easily sidestepped.
I don't want to "go after" people and prove to them that they're blindly believing in something that they don't have a true cause for... but a part of me wants desperately for them to come to that conclusion on their own.
I hate talking to people who merely accept the generally held circular orthodoxy because they care more about what you believe than why. I want an answer to the why, too, regardless of what you believe.
This whole thing is just exhausting.
Feb 16, 2007 7:03 pm
I am unsure of why you would want to convince people of the lack of certitude in any given position but there is no value inherent in anything, value is something we ascribe to things. Value is up to you.
As far as coming to the same conclusions and perspectives, Nietzsche’s proclamation that “god is dead’ referrers not only to science usurping the power of cultural explanation of phenomena but also the omniscient perspective itself so if you are looking for the ‘right’ answer you will never find it because it is always couched in a perspective. However, in the end, you have to find YOUR truth not THE truth, and that will change with time and experience, something’s are affirmed and others disproved. Nevertheless, keep reading, thinking and exploring.
Feb 26, 2007 12:15 pm
I recommend doing some reading in the genre of philosophy of religion. Nietzche will not have the answers you are looking for. He denies all truth, let alone religious truth. If you read the great philosophy of religion authors (Anselm, Augustine, Wittgenstein) you will find that many of them will argue that spirituality is a completely non-rational idea. It cannot be argued for or against, because it is not the object of rationality at all. Instead, spirituality is an entire unique realkm of its own. Religious experiences are usually experienced entirely independent of traditional "senses" and cannot be discussed in terms of these senses. So, argument is useless in these cases. If someone says he had a religious experience or vision, there are no words in human language to properly convey the nature of that experience to you, because it was a non-sensory, or at least beyond sensory, experience. Really interesting stuff.
May 24, 2007 2:11 pm
I must adgree with sok2bametalhead, the fact that you need to find proof among the readers who actually believe in truth, rather than those who have no certainty in truth.
May 26, 2007 3:02 pm
Your perspective (both the "what" and the "why) is your own. Everything else derives from choices made or borne out of that perspective. Meaning arising from choice is individually derived and thus optional for the individual and meaningless, in and of itself, for everyone else.
Nietzsche was right, but not about dead gods and all (which assumes there was an over-arching, universal and provable concept of "God" to begin with, capable of some universal change of state)-- we are all better artists than we think.
Aug 1, 2007 3:15 pm