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Steve Ison

7/5/2008 3:37:05 PM ---- Updated 7/5/2008 3:51:47 PM

Life After Death
I've just read JP Sharpes blog about his dream song with his guide about reincarnation and it got me thinking..
This medium told me i developed alot of creative energy over many lives-tho i'd never actually been a musician before.She said i'd had a life as a slave too-thats why i'm so anti people having any authority over me.According to my Uncle (who really believes in it too)-we had a life together as monks in a monastery-and again according to the medium- i had a past life as an ascetic in India.Both of those last 2 past lives contribute to the fact i find it very easy and comfortable spending alot of time by myself..
I believe in reincarnation intuitvely pretty well almost 100%-whether i want to or not really..

I say that,'cos a part of me thinks it'd be alot better if you just died and you ceased to be totally-like a full on aetheist would believe..No being faced with the consequences of things you've done wrong,no more coming back to earth to learn difficult n painful lessons etc

Instant peace..

If you became nothing you wouldn't even know about it anyway-so if you believe there's no afterlife there's no reason to fear death(i mean for yourself-obviously you might be worried about how your death would affect those you left behind)

The most difficult belief i think would be that of the fundamentalist Christian who lives a life tortured by whether they're gonna be saved to go to heaven or condemned to an afterlife in an interminable firey hell with satan..

Its either one...........or the other

Try as i can i can't understand that idea at all...

The infinite complexities,3D colours,beauty,sadness,creativity,tragedy,joy and existential pain of being a human being reduced and compressed into a black and white still frame

strange...

Stranger still that i've more compassion in my little finger than the fundamentalist God has in his entire universe..

Could you judge and condemn someone to an eternity of unbearable suffering in the paedophilic monsterous hands of uncle satan-without giving them the opportunity to learn from their transgressions-for making the mistakes as a human being we all do?

No?

me neither..

In truth that has to be the strangest of beliefs..











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Kevin White

7/5/2008 4:03:55 PM ---- Updated 7/5/2008 4:05:22 PM


I believe all things spiritual are a simple reflection of the human animal's unique ability to think "around" things, and extrapolate accordingly. It's our brain at play, dealing with our knowledge of death; and the fact we just don't like the concept. Put simply, "We make the shit up to be more happy".

There is, and has never been, any concrete evidence of the supernatural. It doesn't exist. It's all "ordinary and natural".

I would never presume to say never ... for I don't know everything, but there has been no evidence to to support the concept.

And faith? Well, I also think faith is uniquely human. It runs stronger in gamblers than most, but it's basically the same thing ... banking on winning the unknown.

All life on this planet shares the same DNA ... separated by the arrangement triggered via the reproduction mechanism of the parent creating the offspring.

We're merely a unique form of "earth life" ... and when the next comet arrives, there will be no God swatting it out of the cosmos for us.

Grass has no supernatural, nor do we.

Kev-


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The Man With No Band

7/5/2008 6:01:50 PM


Very interesting post Steve ! ... and since today it seems we are all admitting to our madness ... I shall take a stab at expounding my beliefs ...
I'm not even sure how to communicate this into words, such as others on here that can explain things so eloquently, so I hope to convey this in the way it is intended ...
I do not believe in a "Heaven or Hell" in the literal sense that was taught to me in my youth ... but I do believe that we are all a part of a grand design and everything and everyone is connected. (The following Statements are just my opinion and just like reality they could change at any moment) ...
I do not believe we ever die ... although we cease to exist in human form (sort of,explanation later) ...We are units of energy, as is all around us ...
You cannot kill energy ...
If you run water into a glass and then freeze it into a solid and then melt it back into a liquid and then evaporated it into the air in a gas ... it still exist ...
So physically, all our ancestors and all that came before have never left ... they are in the rain, they are in the earth, they are in the sprouting flower ... they still exist ... so can reincarnation occur ? ... I think it does constantly with our physical being or energy ... What about our Spiritual being ? ... Does the spirit stay with the solid ? ... I think yes and no ... just as that oxygen, that was apart of water, seperates and might come back as water again does not guarantee that formation will occur ... it may mix with other elements and come back as something quite different ... and yet it is still there ...

Science has yet to explain the spirit ... so it does not recognize it ... IMO it's because it is so far above science that Science has not developed the tools to explain it ... but it is there ... and it is energy

... Balance is an intricate part of how it all works ... there is good energy and bad energy ... What ? that makes no sense ... if you need bad energy, is bad energy not then therefore good energy ? ... Now you are prepared ... :)

I believe that all the human qualities that we call "good or positive" (truth, Love etc. etc.) are an energy that has very strong attractions to it's side of the energy field.
I also believe all the human qualities that we call "bad or negative" (deceit, Hate etc. etc.) are an energy that has very strong attractions to it's own side of the energy field.

I believe that each can build to tremendous proportions ... Examples:
(Good) A team of players in a game are over matched in every way .. size, strength, abilities, etc. and are given no chance to win a game and yet if that group of players is in tune with each other and they feel they can win, the collective Positive energy can propel them to play better, be stronger, and have more ability than they ever had, and they can pull off the upset and win the game.

(Bad) The stock market crash here in the U.S. in 1929 ... the negative energy associated with fear, greed lies and deceit, sent a whole country into turmoil and economic depression for years.. caused by the effects of one massive negative day.

I believe if we die with more negative energy in us, that most of us helps tilt the world into a negative place ... Where as I believe if we die with more positive energy in us, that most of us helps tilt the world into a positive place ...
We already know that energy cannot die ... so it has to go someplace correct ?

I believe that in the end .... the world will either be destroyed by the gathering of all this negative energy (not killed mind you, but rather transformed into something that will not sustain animal or plant life)(AKA ...Hell) ... or it will evolve into a grander place, by the gathering of all this positive energy
(again transformed into something that will not sustain animal or plant life but will sustain our spiritual energy in a grand way. (AKA ...Heaven)

Well that touches on the basis of my current beliefs in the best way I know how to explain it ... What a Cracka Huh ?

Sam


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7/6/2008 1:54:06 AM


There is a mysterious place where a song sings itself into ones heart making itself manifest by way a structured form. I always thought we evolved in much the same way. We, who by all practical accounts ought to have created ourselves extinct by now by our own self destructive agendas and Frankenstein Monsters set loose about the world in our glorious honor have by some miracle remained in the evolutionary scheme of things... and that is a mystery by all accounts.

There is something at play... the closest adjective within my language that I can describe it as is magic, a divine synchronicity, and all we have is to gamble with such things... some win, many lose... but we are all here gambling, even those that seemingly play it safe ... exposing ourselves bit by bit, all having experienced a part and portion of this amazing wonder while writing a song... a moment that transcended our heroes... or worldly aspirations ... we all wrote at least one song that made us feel the eternity of our own soul if for even just one moment and we were fortunate enough to capture it and share it with each other. If we are in fact all magicians and gamblers at play... then we, my iac friends, are the manifestation of life beyond what we understand as solid matter. A brilliant and diverse symphony at play within each of us... and each of us a note within. I do not and can not believe this phenomenal thing called life is but a vain play, and if indeed that is the case, for who's entertainment was it sung into existence ? Perhaps we are the universe's need to whack off... but I do not believe that, and will not... music has never allowed me to.

Steve, there is a joy you've tapped into and every time I listen to your magic I feel less lonely and the world seems a more inviting place to visit.


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Conversation Suicide

7/6/2008 2:47:05 AM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 2:48:19 AM


Thank you Steve, Sam, Kevin and Crack*a*jack*crow for giving me some VERY deep thoughts about humanity, spirtuality, eastern philosophy and reincarnation for the day.

I see many folk of like mind on this site. Seems like "politics" is the only subject that can cause MAJOR contention.

Keep pursuing that which gives you peace and doesn't harm others. -phlegm


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Richard Scotti

7/6/2008 6:31:54 AM


I believe in karma and reincarnation. I do not believe in heaven and hell but there are metaphors for those places. If you have a bad karma when you die you will be reincarnated into a another person who will experience life as kind of a "hell on earth". Conversely, if you have agood karma when you die you will be rewarded in your next life by being in a very good situation. I also believe that if you are really a bad person you lose your soul and you don't move on to a next life. Read "On God"
which is an interview with Normal Mailer made into a book. Mailer attempts to answer the unanswered questions of our time. You may not always agree with him but it's really engossing and enagaging. It could change the way you see the world.


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fly on the wall

7/6/2008 7:34:20 AM


It's hard to think about life after death if you believe that every event within the continuum of history is permanent, still intact and alive. However I do believe there is some realm outside of life that allows all the things that should've happened in life to happen. A parallel history of all the possibilities.


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the kozy king

7/6/2008 8:14:35 AM



"The most difficult belief i think would be that of the fundamentalist Christian who lives a life tortured by whether they're gonna be saved to go to heaven or condemned to an afterlife in an interminable firey hell with satan.."

This hurts, Steve, because the true Christian belief is that access to heaven is absolutely FREE and absolutely GUARANTEED. God came to earth (as Christ) in order to pay the full price for mankind. Where's the torture in that? "While we we yet sinners, Christ died for us."

Also: "Stranger still that I've more compassion in my little finger than the fundamentalist God has in his entire universe. Could you judge and condemn someone to an eternity of unbearable suffering in the paedophilic monsterous hands of uncle satan-without giving them the opportunity to learn from their transgressions-for making the mistakes as a human being we all do?"

Steve, it is a common misconception that God choses to send people to hell. The truth (according to christians) is that all people have rejected God and have chosen hell for themselves. God, in His compassion, offers a way of salvation from hell that is absolutely FREE and absolutely GUARANTEED. Those that don't want to rely on God will be allowed to rely on themselves (as they have chosen) and will create hell for themselves just as we do here on earth whenever God slackens His restraints (in order to show us what we're really like).

I can't argue the highly creative points of view that are offered whenever these discussions come up, because I don't know anything about them.

But please consider possible inaccuracies when criticizing my faith. No bad vibes here with me, folks, I realize you are all sensitive and caring people. I was going to ignore this blog but my wife suggested it was perhaps my duty to speak up so I did.

Peace, love, understanding,

Terry


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7/6/2008 9:16:58 AM


Very interesting stuff but I would love to hear all of you write your feelings into songs because this blog will not last long but your songs will last forever.


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satch

7/6/2008 9:25:48 AM


Thanks Steve - and others - for such brave and thoughtful self-expression, eloquently put.

Here's a thought - ask yourself this "What is the opposite of life?" Many people say "death" - but that's wrong - the opposite of "death" is "birth", not "life". Life has no opposite, it is the only thing we know that has no opposite, and that is simply because it is eternal. We are born into physicality and we die out of physicality - but life exists before and after physicality.

Some people simply know this to be true - other people cannot accept this because they are stuck in the mind, in rationale, in logic. That's okay, they are in for a most pleasant surprise when they "die" and find out that they are still alive :)


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The Man With No Band

7/6/2008 10:23:59 AM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 1:32:47 PM


Satch .... Very well said ... and in such very few words too .... wish I could do that....


ooops Sorry Terry ... Here is the questions back .... after I posted them I thought I might have put you on the spot so I took it down before your answer ....

Terry .... I respect you and everyone else for their beliefs .... and I do not belittle anyone for their beliefs .... but I would like to get your thoughts on this .... According to Christian beliefs, there is only one way into the Kingdom of Heaven and that is through Jesus Christ .... So my questions are as follows ....
What happened to all the people before the man made religion of Christianity was born ? If, as you say God does not condemn people to Hell, then who decided their fate (Heaven or Hell) before Christianity ? Even after Christ died there were millions of people that had never heard the word of Christ, so were they all condemned to Hell ? Even today, I have a hard time believing that a child born into a Budhist family, or any other man made religion for that matter, that never hears the words of Christ are simply denied access to Heaven ... What makes a Christian believe that they have the sole monopoly of the Kingdom of Heaven ? Why would some folks get FREE and GUARANTEED access, and others not ? That makes little if no sense to me at all.


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the kozy king

7/6/2008 12:20:19 PM



Good questions Sam. These questions touch on the most controversial of doctrines and christians themselves can't agree. I'm gonna give you the long argument and then give you the short argument at the end. If you lose patience just skip to the end. OK?

But basically --

Before Christianity there was the Jewish faith which starts with "in the beginning God made the heavens and the earth" and then follows though with a few thousand years of history in the books from Genesis to Malachi. Then the story of Jesus unfolds as well as the birth of the christian church and the prophesies for the end of this world and the beginning of the next.

When God is referred to in the beginning of the bible He uses the term "god" just as you would for any god -- "a god" -- nothing definite. As the story progresses God gives His real name to Moses. More names, all explicit, define God's qualities throughout the "old testament". Also symbolism, ceremony, historic events and predictive prophesies all appear with greater and greater frequency to represent God's plan to save his people by sacrificing Himself. There is a lifetime of study here but it's all the same thing -- people are saved through God's grace before, during and after Christ's time on earth. The ancient Hebrews understood this through the words of their prophets who were under the influence of God's spirit. Christians, likewise, (supposedly) understand the events of Christ's life, as well as the words of the prophets, through the same spirit.

So, the bible is a systematic revelation of God that must be understood in its entirety and not just in fragments.

How does this God "choose" who is given the spirit to understand (and who isn't)? This is an extremely advanced doctrine which would be pointless to discuss here. I wlll e-mail exhaustively with you privately if you wish. Anyone who wishes to discuss this tricky subject can e-mail me at tornblom@sasktel.net.

OK! NOW THE SHORT ANSWER:

First, as I said before, all people are doomed by their own nature and not by God's selection. God is not the author of evil.

Secondly, you will never understand unless you accept God's sovereignty over all things to do as he pleases without ever making a mistake. God is not the author of evil.

Thirdly, we have every reason to believe that those who die in infancy without ever coming to an age of understanding are always among those saved as God does not require anything further of them than their birth. God is not the author of evil.

Fourthly, I have absolutely no idea of why God would choose one person for salvation and not another. But I can't deny His right to control His own creation. And my faith says He's always right whether anyone thinks so or not. God is not the author of evil.

There is a lot of debating to do here, and I admit that I wish I didn't have to do it, but I wlll answer everyone who contacts me privately for in depth discussion.

Promise.

TT


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Kevin White

7/6/2008 1:26:08 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 2:05:40 PM


For those questioning why an answer was given to no apparent question, the query was essentially:

If heaven can only be achieved through Judaic based religions (Jews, Muslim, Christianity ... through the path of Christ), are the other billions of people of other faiths simply fucked?

I'll take it one step further:

Where was God in the 20 billion years before humans arose to think him up? Will God still be there when we are inevitably not?

Bear in mind, at one point in the universe, there was no matter ... and when matter first formed ... all there was was essentially hydrogen, helium and lithium, the basic simple elements.

Between 3 billion to 13 billion years following the big bang, stars formed from hydrogen, burned it all up and died. The stars that died are responsible for ALL the heavier elements in the universe which were ejected into the cosmos upon their death ... including carbon, the essential ingredient for life ... us.

We are literally born of stardust ... but so is grass, bacteria ... dinosaurs etc ...

If God created everything, God questionably sure went through a lot of experimentation before winding up at us ... which causes me to wonder exactly who created whom ... and are we simply a function of the chain reaction started 20 billion or so years back?

And just WTF took God so long to get to humans when God is God for Christ's sake? Why create dinosaurs just to have them obliterated? Why the several mass extinctions/die offs along? Wrong faiths? Oops, God's mistake, hit the reset button and start over? If we are in fact created in his likeness ... what ... no mirrors in heaven until just a few tens of thousands of years back?

The most reasonable explanation is that it's just the universe acting as natural universe would. We're part of an explanable natural chain of events, which eventually led to the human animal. Nothing really more than natural evolution creating a brain that can question itself ... and has a natural ability deal w/ the abstract ... which ironically allows us both to create the abstract concept of the supernatural, and then study and question it.

Modern "God Systems" like "Thor, the God of Thunder!!!", and those we quaintly dismiss as "MYTHOLOGY" is a remnant of our early lack of understanding ... and our need to explain natural phenomena, like thunder/lighting, and dealing w/ the finality of death. Modern belief systems exist today predictably because they were more "compact and portable" (you mean I can believe in just ONE God vs 340?? Gimme THAT one, it's MUCH easier to remember) than "ancient" belief systems. Today's belief systems will likely inevitably move on to the mythology section of the library as future systems replace them.

I believe humans, given broader education and/or not slip sliding backwards into survival mode, will eventually "evolve" beyond requiring concepts of God. The evolution is happening already, as more and more people abandon all religious belief systems worldwide. As a whole, "non-belief" may be the world's largest religion.

The concept of God, all religious belief, is likely best explained as a human emotional crutch ... yet, that's in no way saying there isn't a need for crutches when they are needed. I believe people need God equivalents to get by ... for life is hard.

I also believe, since no one really knows what's what ... that "non-belief" also requires faith; for one will not be certain of anything until one is dead.

And the dead aren't revealing the secret, no matter what those who claim they can talk to them say ...

Best,

Kev-




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The Man With No Band

7/6/2008 2:00:16 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 2:07:59 PM


Terry ... I could buy your explanation if you told me God himself revealed these things to you ... but I would venture to guess that you were taught these things by way of human teachings ... from books written by humans themselves ... and humans that had something to gain by the creation of a religion at that ... I believe you are right about one thing ... God does not create evil ... Humans do though and as a fellow human, I can not understand why anyone would not question there faith, considered it was all created by the minds of men ... and probably evil men at that ...


Hey Kevin ... thanks for getting that message up and not leave Terry looking like he was talking to thin air ... :)

Your statement that ..."Stars formed from hydrogen, burned it all up and died. The stars that died are responsible for ALL the heavier elements in the universe which were ejected into the cosmos upon their death ... including carbon, the essential ingredient for life ... us."

That gets back to what I was saying in that ... the stars didn't die ... they are still here ... just reformed into new life ... everything is alive in my IMHO ... and we are all one in the same ... were just recyclable matter ... and both positive and negative energy flow through us all ..


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Kevin White

7/6/2008 2:17:14 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 2:24:59 PM


Agreed that we are creations of the natural universe Sam, and when we die ... we obviously return the elemental makings of our birth back to the natural universe.

I do not believe though, that we retain the ability of self consciousness and/or any lasting personality. Those constructs are unique to our brains; head injuries or degenerative brain disease proves that they're organic human traits. There's no "spiritual" to it. Damaged brain=compromised.

When we die, who we were dies with us. It's what we've done while alive that carries forward.


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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

7/6/2008 2:43:33 PM


thanks Steve------------------- for lifting the bar

I have read and fondled each word here---and nodded sagely, and squinted at times, I respect all the views expressed and do not wish to change anyones beliefs.

If I wished to control mankind through thought,
I would look for mans greatest fear,
and claim to be able to control this fear
through the actions of an omnipotent being

The obvious fear which has no master is death!

I would claim to be able to control or stave off death

--even give everlasting life!!

Who could resist?


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kranky king

7/6/2008 2:56:57 PM



It's obvious that kozy can't think for himself and must blindly follow some archaic system that doesn't explain anything.

He should leave the running of the universe to you guys.


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Steve April

7/6/2008 3:43:01 PM


Kudos to everyone...

Talking about matters like this, a bit like Plato's parable of the cave. Cavedwellers found it hard to believe there is a world outside the cave...




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Kevin White

7/6/2008 5:10:30 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 5:12:10 PM


Rob - In my youth, I callously referred to organized religion as "spiritual government".

I no longer think that way. I believe all beliefs to be intimate and personal ... to each person's need, for themselves.

I speak for no other but myself, as I've come to terms w/ my own existence. I comment as I see the physicality of the universe presented, but claim no truth in the matter. I realize I could be totally wrong. I just don't think so.

Kozy/Kranky/Terry ... plz read immediately above. I make no assertions about running the universe, bud. I'm a blade of grass, not God. I trust you to your own faith. In the end, it matters not. We all end up where we're going.

The truth of the matter, unknown still, is impervious to belief or opinion.

Best,

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/6/2008 6:12:06 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 6:15:27 PM


I forgot to add ...

What I value most from us human folk is our ability to think of shit nothing on the planet has ever been able to consider up until we did it. Art is similar to science, but it's not quite scientific ... as it's all hunch ... which, coincidently, is where science starts ... but must subsequently validate.

For instance ...

Monkeys can fly? I mean ... outside of the Wizard of Oz? Yet ... look at us!! I was the early guy off the roof breaking his neck doing the trial and error "wings" experiment. I'm glad I got reincarnated (kidding).

We're a formidable life form .... us humans ... hence our natural viral abilities to expand our numbers beyond reasonable planetary capacity ... and sorry ... I digressed beyond the scope of this thread w/ my ramblings ... but this stuff has weighed and preyed on me my whole life ... so I've devoted some think time to it.

Back on topic ...

Current scientific "inclination" (at a certain level, it's all mere guess until proven otherwise) boils matter down to vibrating strings (string theory) at the lowest level ...

I like that.

I've always felt spaghetti solves everything.

Okay ... maybe that wasn't quite back on topic ...


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The Man With No Band

7/6/2008 7:02:54 PM


I agree totally with Kevin's statement ...

"I speak for no other but myself, as I've come to terms w/ my own existence. I comment as I see the physicality of the universe presented, but claim no truth in the matter. I realize I could be totally wrong. I just don't think so."

.. and about man's ability to think ... We all have our own views, which is pretty awesome in my book ... It shows how much there is to learn ...
Terry believes in the Christian Scriptures ...
Kevin believes there is no God and no spiritual life ... (if I read his words correctly)
I believe in a God, but a far different God than what the __scriptures teach, and I also believe in the spirit but also in a different way than most ...

It does not mean that I am right, nor does it mean that I am not interested in what others have to say ... I believe the biggest limitation man puts upon himself is to shut things out and believe in anything without the possibility that something new might come to light ...

There is a lot more out there to learn than has ever come to light before ...
and it might just be in that plate of spaghetti ... :)


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Talkie Toaster

7/6/2008 7:15:32 PM


Toast goes GREAT with spaghetti!


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Conversation Suicide

7/6/2008 7:27:23 PM ---- Updated 7/6/2008 7:27:23 PM



mmmm... yummy -- especially garlic/parmesian toast with butter. YUM!

Now that's PROOF that there's some type of supreme being, and some sort of GREAT DANCE in the afterlife.... someday....

A tasty meal like that on this hunk of rock? Surely there's even MORE lovely things out there when we step off this mortal coil ! -phlegm


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Roach up your nose

7/6/2008 8:37:13 PM


It's great! ~ there isn't any shit in heaven. 0:-)


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LyinDan

7/6/2008 8:50:57 PM


All of this is all very well.

Some of you know things that can't be known. At least as well as I do. :P

Maybe all of you.


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satch

7/7/2008 1:52:21 AM


Pahaha - there is one innate flaw in the "logic" of the scientifically-based believers, which is that science is an evolving system - so, for example, if Kev was born some time in the distant past, he would have believed the science of the time which stated that the Earth was flat! If he had been born a mere 200 years ago, he would have believed the science of the time which stated that man could never fly in machines in the sky... or communicate down wires... or watch television... or use x-rays to see beneath the human skin... or create vaccines to combat mortal diseases... and on and on...

Science is the most humanly-created of all systems, being based on pure human logic, the mind creating constructs and "proving" them using similar human-created constructs, mathematics, physics, chemistry... all human constructs given empirical status by the human minds that created them...

Science only knows - and can only know - what it has proven (in its way) so far. Science does not know what it does not know - so to believe in science above any other form of human concept is to limit yourself completely to the non-creative world. Kev is the ultimate enigma, in that he claims to believe purely in the scientific process and knowledge, physicality only, and yet he persists in creating songs and musically expressing ideas which come from a place and a space that cannot be scientifically expressed or explained. Explain inspiration? Scientifically.


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 6:39:21 AM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 6:43:12 AM


Well, the fatal flaw to that point, Satch, is that science only bears minor relevance to the matter.

It's not a belief in science under discussion. Science is tangental to the issue.

It's a belief in the natural world vs supernatural world.

The belief that only the natural ... the here and now ... exists and the supernatural doesn't, is further proven as science advances it's knowledge base, but science is merely human study of the nature of the physical universe. One can then choose to believe or not believe what scientists say they've proven.

Ben Franklin was a non-believer LONG before science made the discoveries since. He believed in the natural world being the only world, and experimented with it accordingly. Non-belief in the supernatural isn't a new concept created by science.

Whether planes fly or the world is flat is irrelevant to the issue of God. The capabilities arose as a byproduct of man's continued study of the nature of the physical world around him. God didn't give man wings ... man figured out how ... because in the physical world, he could.

So it's not a belief in science, and what it continues to add to human's information pool about reality.

It a belief in reality, and a native suspicion that that's all there is to the universe.

That's a timeless concept, and the underlying basis for all scientific questioning.

Ongoing studies of the truth of things simply continue to strongly suggest that there is no unreal, only real. Science may eventually find a God too ... who knows ... but I don't think so.

I think we're all we've got ...

... and birds and whales sing too ...

:-D

Best,

Kev-


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satch

7/7/2008 10:11:57 AM


Yo Kev - science has proven that atoms and molecules exist, that neutrons exist, that quarks and anti-matter exist too. Is that all part of the natural world? And if so, how was "reality" before such things were even talked about, let alone proven?

My points are that this "reality" that you so believe in, is a changing and evolving thing... that science discovers and uncovers more of our "reality" all the time... and that the "we" that, according to you, is all we've got, is actually mostly space on a molecular level, that your physical world is a scientifically-proven illusion!

And the birds and the whales appear to us to sing, and I too love the sounds that they make. But in fact, they are communicating, that is, talking to each other, not singing - it is merely our perception that they are singing :)


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Hop On Pop

7/7/2008 10:32:29 AM


So many questions... none of which can be answered by any of us.

I tell my kids that all religions are just "different ways people have of talking to God." As far as an afterlife or some form of reincarnation, I am hoping that what we have now is not the End. I really don't think that it is.

Think about it: I am a firm believer in science, but even the most brilliant scientists, biologists, and philosophers cannot explain the mystery of consciousness. Just how is it that we are AWARE? And why?!?!?

Yes, it is the great mystery, which is what leads me to believe that there has to be something more. No matter what you and your chosen holy book has decided to call it.

It leads me back again to one of my favorite quotes.
From the mouth of the greatest mind of the 20th century:
"God does not play dice with the Universe."
-Albert Einstein


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qelizabeth

7/7/2008 11:26:44 AM


This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine.


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 11:37:10 AM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 11:40:04 AM


Jeff -

Einstein was agnostic ... he didn't believe in God, although he feigned belief to the public because of the times and made many popular statements referencing "God" (including the oft quoted above) ... but in his personal writings, he expressed serious doubts.

In fact, all he's saying above is that there is a natural order.

Einstein's own private words and letters on God:

"I get hundreds and hundreds of letters but seldom one so interesting as yours. I believe that your opinions about our society are quite reasonable.

It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it. "

"From the viewpoint of a Jesuit priest I am, of course, and have always been an atheist.... I have repeatedly said that in my opinion the idea of a personal God is a childlike one. You may call me an agnostic, but I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth. I prefer an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our being."

"I do not believe in immortality of the individual, and I consider ethics to be an exclusively human concern with no superhuman authority behind it."

Source (and there is extensive analysis out there): Einstein the agnostic

The "greatest mind of the 20th centery" believed only in the natural universe we know, and nothing beyond it.

Best,

Kev-


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Hop On Pop

7/7/2008 11:56:54 AM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 12:02:06 PM


So be it.
So please, explain the existence of consciousness.
And how did this natural order come into being?

Please, also understand, that I am by no means an evangelical anything. Nor, do i necessarily believe in an interventionist God, who watches over us all. But I am frequenly baffled by all that I see, and how and why it is all here.

I am also a staunch evolutionist, and believer in all things emperical.
But emperical data only stretches so far. And at that point you must know that there is something else. No matter what you choose to call it.

And I am not pointing to the Bible, the Torah, the Koran, the writings of B'hullah, or any other sacred text to prove my point. I am instead, pointing to the very same evidence as all the scientists, or rather the lack therof.

No matter what you think, no matter what you call it... even all scientists believe in God. They just call it by another name: "The Natural Order". And their dogma is that of the sacred text of Physics.

Whatever you choose to believe, I will not begrudge you your beliefs.

As to me, and my beliefs: all I can do is say "thank you", whether I am heard or not.


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 12:01:26 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 1:11:36 PM


Satch ... it doesn't matter if quarks or atoms or strings were discovered or talked about.

There is still VASTLY more to discover in the natural world, and science will go on exploring and discovering the physical realm ... the natural universe ... because that's what science does.

Discovery doesn't make anything exist ... because what exists already existed whether discovered or not. Science is merely the organized process of discovery.

Once unveiled though, said knowledge is added to our understanding of the nature of the universe ... additional pieces to the natural puzzle. I'm not made up of discoveries at the molecular level. The molecular level was there making me up already ... awaiting discovery.

It's not so much reality, as real ... what is physical, natural and present versus what is make believe or unreal. It doesn't become reality through discovery. It doesn't change ... for natural is/was and will always be what it is, was and will be. It exists as real outside of whether we currently know about it or not.

I know too many people for whom "make believe" is their personal "reality" to get too deep into the vague syntax of that term.

Science explores what is ... there already.

When I say "we're all we've got", I mean that the natural universe we study and see is probably all there is ... is all ... there very likely is no spiritual, no supernatural ... no Gods or Ghosts ... or other smoky manifestations of the active, superstitious mind.

And are you implying humans aren't communicating when singing or playing music? How is that so different from birds and whales, and more to the point ... how do you know?

:-D

Kev-




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Kevin White

7/7/2008 1:06:26 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 1:07:18 PM


Your consciousness, Jeff, is a gift of natural evolution ... like wings on a bird.

Why do birds have wings? So they can fly.

Why do we have brains? So we can think.

It's our special talent ... a natural evolutionary genetic mutational knack.

How the natural order came into being is still under exploration ... who knows if it will ever be appropriately explained?

We still know very little, but we also know a LOT more than we did. As I said above, maybe someday science will find "God" ... but I don't believe so. I think all they'll find is more order in the nature of things.

btw ... most studies put the number of scientists who believe in "God" at about 40% ... but such studies are considered flawed, for the questions themselves don't account for the myriad interpretations individuals define "God" as ...

... like you ... most all reject a "personal" God; what you labeled "interventionist" God ... yet, there are scientists whose dogma in the sacred text of Physics leads them to study it because they are in search of proof for the "greater" God ... the man behind the curtain ... the one who created the order of the universe ... more like Sam's interpretation.

So far, all that's been found is the natural universe ... but I guess we'll see, right?

Best,

Kev-


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satch

7/7/2008 1:14:31 PM


Riiiight Kev, so, you say "It's not so much reality, as real ... what is physical, natural and present versus what is make believe or unreal. It doesn't become reality through discovery. It doesn't change ... for natural is/was and will always be what it is, was and will be. It exists as real outside of whether we currently know about it or not."

I can see that things are the same whether or not we understand them, whether or not we have scientifically proven them. The point I am trying to get you to see is that the thing that you call "reality" is just as conceptual as anything else! The way we see and exist in the physical world changes and evolves as our understanding of that physical world changes...

But you did not answer my point that the physical world is a scientifically-proven illusion - according to molecular physics, we are mostly comprised of empty space - nothing is solid, it is an illusion! All, absolutely everything physical, is merely vibration and space.

And of course music is communication (except for certain mainstream artists who shall remain nameless for the sake of sanity), probably far more effective than words at evoking a response in receptive humans, but the birds and the whales are not making music, they are talking to each other, it's just music to our ears!


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 1:50:52 PM


Satch ... you and I must share a bottle of wine someday ... and have this long discussion.

We've just entered the philosophical realm of our program, questioning what is "real" and what is "illusion" ...

I'll offer that I'm substantial and real ... and when I sing, I'm confident that a sound is heard ... even if I sing while the tree is falling in the forest and no one is around.

:-D

I'm not an proven illusion of molecular science. I am.

To prove this assertion, I invite you to bang your head on the nearest wall. If, then, the physical world is mostly illusionary empty space, your head and the wall should be adequately able to avoid collision. Pls get back to me with the results of your experimentation! :-D

Hmmm ... by what you say about music, communication and talking ... what is rap, then?

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 1:58:18 PM


I'll just point out here that if you believe everything in the Universe is "Natural", then by definition the "Supernatural" (if what you're calling "Supernatural" is by your view merely some things that are as yet undiscovered and without a proper name or explanation) is "Natural".

Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know? And that of course such things would actually be "Natural" - since if they exist, they must be?


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 2:03:12 PM


Kev, if you're in the Matrix, then if you believe banging your illusory head against the illusory wall will hurt, it will. Everybody knows that if you die in the Matrix, well, it's really not good for you.

:p


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 2:11:13 PM


Actually, no. Supernatural means beyond natural ... which is no longer natural.

What we can say is that it is undiscovered or unknown ...

There is no question that there are physical laws of nature. Some are known, some are unknown.

The universive needs no proof, it is it's own truth. What is outside, if anything, of the universe is as yet undiscovered.

If it does not exist, then it will never be discovered.

:D

K-


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 2:14:46 PM


Kev, if you're in the Matrix, then if you believe banging your illusory head against the illusory wall will hurt, it will. Everybody knows that if you die in the Matrix, well, it's really not good for you.

:p


Neo ... I TOLD you to STAY OUT of this discussion ...

:-D

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 2:24:05 PM


Eh, I don't think you've quite followed my circular reasoning.

So, there's no such thing as the "Supernatural", huh? (What did I really say?)


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 2:37:28 PM


While I'm here, I'll extend your thinking a bit, though.

What is outside the Universe? Will things outside our Universe have the same physical laws that we know (or think we can discover), or could they be different physical laws? By what conceivable mechanism are these laws enacted, anyway? Did they just happen? Did some superadvanced civilization make them up? Where did that civilization come from and what laws did they obey? Was it God? Where'd he come from? Those laws of our Universe, have they always been the same? What's "always", anyway? How long is infinite time? Is it enough ( :p) )? Are those physical laws we know in our Universe always obeyed? What kind of a law is it that supposes a result based on probability? Does that law always result in the same exact result, given the same starting conditions? What's gravity? What's magnetism? What's light? What's my point?


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The Man With No Band

7/7/2008 3:01:13 PM


Well .... I'm sure looking forward to 200 years from now when were ALL sitting around laughing about this discussion ... Sure hope they get weed legalized by then ... :)


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satch

7/7/2008 3:55:17 PM


Kev, forget the wine, it dulls the mind, and it's not an assertion, it's a proven and well-known scientific fact - the atoms and molecules that are the building blocks of matter are comprised mostly of empty space. Ergo, all physical objects, including people, are comprised mostly of empty space.

You should go read here : Science Lesson 1 - The Building Blocks of the Universe (Grade 5) - it states clearly, among other things, the following:

"Everything you see and many things you can’t see are made up of matter."
"Atoms are the building blocks of matter."
"One of the most surprising findings about atoms is that almost all the space within an atom is empty space."


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Baby

7/7/2008 5:06:50 PM


Mr Steve, Baby is wondering. When you get that giant rush of glory from the sky, when you are playing, singing or writing, who is in charge of that? I some times feel like I am physically connected to conduits that bring me gifts of ability. Is that my uncle the giraffe or perhaps my father the squid. Baby is confused again.


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 5:39:38 PM


Eh, I don't think you've quite followed my circular reasoning.

So, there's no such thing as the "Supernatural", huh? (What did I really say?)


I followed it fine LD ... but you stepped outside the lines and made assumptions of terminology ...

One cannot assert supernatural means undiscovered by logic.

Supernatural cannot be redefined by logic, it means:

Main Entry: su·per·nat·u·ral
Pronunciation: \?sü-p?r-'na-ch?-r?l, -'nach-r?l\
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English, from Medieval Latin supernaturalis, from Latin super- + natura nature
Date: 15th century
1: of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe; especially : of or relating to God or a god, demigod, spirit, or devil
2 a: departing from what is usual or normal especially so as to appear to transcend the laws of nature b: attributed to an invisible agent (as a ghost or spirit)

Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary

It means what it means ... aside from any outside interpretation. Is all.


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Steve April

7/7/2008 5:55:31 PM


baby baby baby, good to hear from you!!!

hmm natural vs. supernatural?

einstein, a big proponent of the reality of the natural world also said "God does not play dice with the universe." His favorite muscian was bach.

einstein also called an aspect of quantum realities "spooky action at a distance."

He admitted quanum realities have mystery effects, that science could not explain (and cannot to this day).

string theory, the new wave physics, goes beyond eisnstein in a way that einstein would have loved. string theory unifies the four fundamental forces. however, for string theory to be right, there need to be 10--12 dimensions. that's a pillar of string theory.

where are the missing 6-8 dimensions? numerous hidden dimensions are coiled into the fabric of the cosmos, curled up into a ball, according to one version, or w macro dimensions out in space somewhere. in the latter version, our dimensions (4) are much like a video game and the "bulk" (the other dimensions) are beyond the screen.

what's more, string theory involves a "bounce" so that the smaller dimensions in effect are dual to the larger dimensions. kinda like rebirth, or the prospect of rebirth.




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Kevin White

7/7/2008 5:55:58 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 5:59:00 PM


While I'm here, I'll extend your thinking a bit, though.

What is outside the Universe? Will things outside our Universe have the same physical laws that we know (or think we can discover), or could they be different physical laws? By what conceivable mechanism are these laws enacted, anyway? Did they just happen? Did some superadvanced civilization make them up? Where did that civilization come from and what laws did they obey? Was it God? Where'd he come from? Those laws of our Universe, have they always been the same? What's "always", anyway? How long is infinite time? Is it enough ( :p) )? Are those physical laws we know in our Universe always obeyed? What kind of a law is it that supposes a result based on probability? Does that law always result in the same exact result, given the same starting conditions? What's gravity? What's magnetism? What's light? What's my point?


Your point is simplistic. No one knows or can explain everything. Sure ... okay ... of course.

What's mine? Please be specific to show you understand.

Also, please explain why mono-polar magnetism should be prevalent in this universe but isn't? What theory explains why it's not?

You sure you want to play this game? It will extend your thinking a bit ... or not ... for you might already know.

:p

Kev-


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Steve April

7/7/2008 6:03:56 PM


Oops, our posts crossed.

Post mine anew so kev may have a go at it...

einstein, a big proponent of the reality of the natural world also said "God does not play dice with the universe." His favorite muscian was bach.

einstein also called an aspect of quantum realities "spooky action at a distance."

He admitted quanum realities have mystery effects, that science could not explain (and cannot to this day).

string theory, the new wave physics, goes beyond eisnstein in a way that einstein would have loved. string theory unifies the four fundamental forces. however, for string theory to be right, there need to be 10--12 dimensions. that's a pillar of string theory.

where are the missing 6-8 dimensions? numerous hidden dimensions are coiled into the fabric of the cosmos, curled up into a ball, according to one version, or w macro dimensions out in space somewhere. in the latter version, our dimensions (4) are much like a video game and the "bulk" (the other dimensions) are beyond the screen.

what's more, string theory involves a "bounce" so that the smaller dimensions in effect are dual to the larger dimensions. kinda like rebirth, or the prospect of rebirth.



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Slimdog Productions

7/7/2008 7:02:53 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 7:14:06 PM


I rather believe in God and die knowing that I believed in Him, believing in Something greater and more loving than what we are than to not believe in Him and find out when I die that He does exists...There is a natural order to the universe. Example: The sun is 93,000,000 miles away from the Earth. Any closer, we would burn, any farther away, we all would freeze. What if 1 molecule was added to H2O, our most precious natural resource? Was this H2O just some random number made up by the universe? What about air? Just random? Why doesn't the galaxies just collide all the time in the universe if it's just random? Take 1 million marbles and just let them randomly roll around. Of course you would have some collide all the time. But as we know from science, the millions upon millions of galaxies colliding just doesn't happen very frequently in the universe. It does happen though... There is just too much "order" imo for randomness in the universe. My mom passed away and actually was revived back in 1991 and she has had the "life after death" experience. She actually saw the little boy of a family friend who had passed at age 5 while clinically dead. She also went their house and saw the family doing their everyday things. She tried to speak to them, but of course, they didn't hear her. She visited a friend of mine's mother in N. Mexico who was sick at the time. She has other experiences that were more personal to her, but she will not speak to us on them. Because of this experience, she is not afraid of death. I have living proof, with me, of a life experience after death. Some may say it's the brain at a certain state, but I believe otherwise.

My question is this: A child gets shot and killed by accident because of a drive by shooting in LA because she was at the wrong place at the wrong time. She was 4 years old (true story). So her life is just "over" as some of you say? She lived 4 years to just get randomly killed by some gang member? Or was there a plan for her, possibly to teach people like me to hear this tragic story and to live each day like it's the last, to say "I love you" to all my family every day whether I am mad at them or not before I leave on a flight? To know that there is a place where she is at now, in peace, where her short time on Earth to learn & to help others, by her death is revered?


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 7:07:32 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 7:08:55 PM


Forget the wine, Satch, it was metaphorical and has no flavor.

I already knew what you offered in the grade 5 link.

The space between atoms is so small as to be not relevant. It's fluff thought to the people that die in car accidents because theoretical physics harshly meets real physics in the collision. The space between atoms was of little import in context.

I don't mean to be insulting, but I'm not sure where you intended to land in your last comment.

K-


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 7:21:21 PM


Steve ...

The fact that science is an ongoing process that of course cannot currently explain everything is not proof of anything. Science, like humans, will learn ... change, and hopefully move forward in knowledge.

Science is only a process ... not the do all end all ... c'mon ... who thinks that? Are we so immediate gratification that we think that? (I don't think so)

There is not a god because science can prove it?

There is a god because science can't prove there isn't?

Science has it's faults, and there are complete HUGE gaps, but it's how we study the truth of things, isn't it?

Science has nothing to do with religion ... it's a process, not a belief ...

Which of the above statements is most reasonable?

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 7:32:42 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 7:37:48 PM


Slimdog ... in my life ... probably longer than yours ...

My mother in law claims she's seen a ghost.

My former drummer, a lawyer, has claimed he's seen a ghost.

I've stood on a lawn watching something with other people (8 to be exact) that very well could have been a UFO.

My former bass player claims to have been continually kidnapped by aliens and had experiments performed on him.

All true ...

I've personally seen and known a LOT of shit ...

All anecdotal and unexplainable ...

I've seen personal innocent friends die in car accidents, gun shootings, drug deals and other random unhappy circumstance.

My father, who I loved to the core of my being, was brought back from death ... and claimed simply that he was dead. He was a devout Catholic ... and still went into the dark unafraid ...

There's a whole lot of shit in the world.

It means nothing about God. It's just all the random shit that occurs whilst living.

Of course, it means what it means to you ... and that's fine.

My beliefs are proof of nothing and are not intended to be so. Yet, they seem to have hit a nerve that some folks feel a need to challenge ... yet they don't seem to hit the right wavelength ...

Best,

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 7:40:12 PM


Sure, I'll play! Woohoo! Everyone else will get bored, but we'll have a grand old time!

Let's start with the simple stuff

*******
"I followed it fine LD"

No, you didn't. You're an explicit, literal guy, Kev, here ya go.

---------
"I'll just point out here that if you believe everything in the Universe is "Natural", then by definition the "Supernatural" (if what you're calling "Supernatural" is by your view merely some things that are as yet undiscovered and without a proper name or explanation) is "Natural".

Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know? And that of course such things would actually be "Natural" - since if they exist, they must be?", I said.

To which, you replied, "Actually, no. Supernatural means beyond natural"[duh] "... which is no longer natural." [Wait for it...the punchline is usually in the last part of the exposition...oh, hell, I forgot I was supposed to be literal and explicit, not smartass. Ok. You clearly didn't read the second paragraph, or if you did, didn't follow it fine. I paraphrased your later dictionary definition of Supernatural before you even phrased it in the first place, so do you suppose I knew what the dictionary definition of Supernatural is? In my first paragraph, I defined Supernatural phenomena in the way that people who don't believe there is such a thing explain what people who DO believe in them are deluding themselves with. In other words, I said the Supernatural is simply a misinterpretation of natural phenomena.]

"What we can say is that it is undiscovered or unknown ..." [You've just said what I just got through saying. What a revelation.]

"There is no question that there are physical laws of nature. Some are known, some are unknown.

The universive needs no proof, it is it's own truth." [Stating the obvious. Why? With a superfluous apostrophe and a misspelling, even. The dictionary says there is no such word as universive. Perhaps you can teach me the meaning of it and broaden my thinking.] What is outside, if anything, of the universe is as yet undiscovered." [No shittski]

"If it does not exist, then it will never be discovered.

:D"
------
Then I say, "Eh, I don't think you've quite followed my circular reasoning.

So, there's no such thing as the "Supernatural", huh? (What did I really say?)"[Let me explain this literally, for the literal-minded. I mentioned circular reasoning, which should have been a clue for you. The closer is my last sentence here ("So, there's no such thing as the "Supernatural", huh?") You've said you don't believe there are any Supernatural phenomena, am I right? And you believe that what other people believe are Supernatural happenings, are simply misapprehensions of Natural phenomena?
When I said, "Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know? And that of course such things would actually be "Natural" - since if they exist, they must be?", what does that mean to you? Gobbledygoop? Or does it suggest that there is no such thing as "Supernatural"? (which is your own position, isn't it?) Supernatural=Natural=Supernatural, circular reasoning. If I have to interpret the distinctions between the definitions for you now, I will have to stomp my feet and make rude noises with my lips. In other words, I was saying what you have already stated, that there is no such thing as the Supernatural, because whatever actually exists and happens must by definition be Natural, since there is nothing which actually happens which is outside "Natural" phenomena, the distinction is merely semantic.

To which you replied, "I followed it fine LD ... but you stepped outside the lines and made assumptions of terminology ...[umm, no, since terms are indeed important, in my first paragraph first post, as I said (in case you haven't read all this, I'll repeat it (first you tell em what you're going to tell em,then you tell em, then you tell em what you done tole em), "I defined Supernatural phenomena in the way that people who don't believe there is such a thing explain what people who DO believe in them are deluding themselves with. In other words, I said the Supernatural is simply a misinterpretation of natural phenomena." That's not making assumptions, it's shining the glorious light of interpretation and enlightenment on some previously cloudy and indeterminate discussion]

"One cannot assert supernatural means undiscovered by logic." [I never said any such thing. Although, I have been known to argue that logic is a human invention, an assertion I'm very sure you can't possibly agree with, and one which I only assert under certain logically extreme circumstances :)]

Supernatural cannot be redefined by logic, it means:" - followed by a cut and paste of the dictionary definition of Supernatural which basically equates to my first post second paragraph ("Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know?")
**********
More to follow, unless you assert you give up now.

:D


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 8:10:48 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 8:14:47 PM


Love a lively discussion ... LD ... so hell, yeah ... I'm in.

What it boils down to is in your last paragraph ...

Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know?"

See above textbook accepted definition of supernatural.

It has nothing to do with having the conceit of thinking we know. We already know we don't know everything.

If it's outside of the physical laws, its conjecture ... make believe ... made up shit ... until proven or discovered otherwise. In the time of man, the supernatural remains stubbornly unsubstantiated.

Hence, it means nothing.

You have the floor.

Best,

Kev-


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fly on the wall

7/7/2008 8:14:46 PM


Then again, if you've experienced the supernatural, you might not feel the need to prove it to anybody.


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Kevin White

7/7/2008 8:18:43 PM ---- Updated 7/7/2008 8:26:06 PM


See above. I've stood on a lawn w/ others looking at what I still believe was a UFO. With a camera, I could have taken a picture of it.

Go figure huh?

I don't feel a need to prove the supernatural. Others seem to want to prove it to me ... but I've seen the questionable ...

And still ...

I don't believe in supernatural. Other life in this universe though ... even unproven ...

The distinction being?

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 8:48:06 PM


"1: of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe; especially : of or relating to God or a god, demigod, spirit, or devil
2 a: departing from what is usual or normal especially so as to appear to transcend the laws of nature b: attributed to an invisible agent (as a ghost or spirit)"

"Might we suggest that by calling something "Supernatural", we refer to something which operates or exists outside the physical laws which we have the conceit of thinking we know?"

You're arguing these definitions aren't equivalent? Please clarify. I believe they are in a broad sense.

You're just nitpicking if you're basing your objection on the clause "which we have the conceit of thinking we know". That's just a modifier making fun of you, not the meat. It changes nothing except to parabolize about the fact that we don't really know what the physical laws are in this universe. Our concepts of the governing physics of the universe have been changed and modified for literally thousands of years. Just in the last century, the change from Newtonian physics to Einsteinian was a tremendous jump, even though in the practical everyday close at hand world, you can't tell the difference in their implications. It would be asinine to think there won't be further changes in our understanding of the way the universe is built. Who's to say that future explanations of the way the world works won't open the door to what is now regarded as Supernatural "wishful thinking" and hoakum. If you're going to dismiss that possibility, then you're not really as open to the possibility that you may be wrong as you hint you are. And it's not even the fact that you dismiss most of this stuff out of hand as bs that aroused me, it's the self-assured manner you have when you do it.

Anyhow, I'm not here to stand up for wild-eyed religious beliefs (and I'm certain in my own mind that just about all religious structures (as opposed to religious ideas) are pure mindnumbing crowd controlling bullshit), nor am I an alien enthusiast or believer in Druidic pap, or peyote-induced clap. Actually, I were a physics major in college, yea so many, many years ago. And I'm aquainted with the usual explanations of "Supernatural" phenomena (your mind is fooling you is the most often used one - and it's often correct).

I'm merely here to pierce your blatant self-assurance. I've played the same role with religious nuts, so it's only fair to take some of their arguments as mine, turnabout. And there's only room for one egotistical, pompous asshole here - and that would be Moi.


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LyinDan

7/7/2008 8:50:50 PM


Oh, yeah, and since you didn't dispute any of the other points, I win those, right?


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Slimdog Productions

7/7/2008 8:51:49 PM


I feel that everyone has their own beliefs, mine included and I respect that, whatever the truth may be...Good topic of conversation. I also believe that because you have lived longer, doesn't necessarily mean you have "lived" longer...get my drift?


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The Man With No Band

7/7/2008 11:31:59 PM


The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true Art and Science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed ....
To know that what is impenetrable to us really exist, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their most primitive forms - this knowledge, this feeling, is at the center of true religiousness. In this sense, and in this sense only, I belong in the ranks of devoutly religious men.
- Albert Einstein


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Vincenzo Pandolfi

7/8/2008 4:12:24 AM


Where we came from is significant, as it helps us to understand who we are, but where we are going, is more important than where we were.

Where we will be is determined by our actions in the present.

VP


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Nerol

7/8/2008 4:42:45 AM


Satch, life has an opposite. A weed in my garden this morning was alive. I pulled it and now it is dead. It is no longer alive. "Not alive" is the opposite of alive. A brother of mine died almost two years ago. He is now the opposite of alive.

The concept of karma presents its own set of problems too. The stillborn baby, the woman who is raped, the child in Zimbabwe who starves to death....all getting what they deserve due to their karmic wheel? If you believe in karma, then that's what you're saying. Unless you're willing to say that karma doesn't always work the way it should. Just saying.


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Nerol

7/8/2008 4:47:16 AM


And also, "death" can be a noun or a verb, i.e., a process or a state of existence. The opposite of life, the noun, is death. The opposite of death, the noun, is life. The opposite of death, the verb, (the process), would be birth, as you say. So life, as a state of existence, most certainly has an opposite, and that would be the state of non-life or death.

It all comes together when you leave out the word play. :)


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 6:15:36 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 6:17:59 AM


I'm merely here to pierce your blatant self-assurance.

Can't be done on a bbs ... nothing has been presented that would shake my confidence or clarity of thought ... and because of the shallowness of the format, my full position to most is likely still general, uninformed and wispy of substance. I don't mind. I know what I think, and I've thought long and hard at it. I spent my youth reading volumes on ESP, magic and other parlor tricks ... wanting it to be true.

Heck, libraries have been written on this subject. Whomever thinks that the subject can be comprehensively discussed on a bbs would be quite mistaken.

Have I said humanity knows all there is to know? Of course not. Who thinks that?

Have I said it doesn't matter because the discussion isn't about any body of scientific knowledge in particular? Yup.

Can what once was considered supernatural be later found to be natural? Of course it can. Thunder and lightning was once considered supernatural. There were Gods involved! Remember?

Yet ...

What exists, exists. It's there. What's not there will remain not there ... never to be "discovered" ... because it's not there, and never has been ... forget natural or supernatural ... it will never be found because it never was.

It's a figment of the imagination ...

Ghosts ...
Vampires ...
Zombies ...
Any Dead returning to communicate ...
Fortune Telling ...
Spirits ...
Magic ...
Voodoo ...
Curses ...
ESP ...
ATT ... (you heard me right, I don't believe in them, either :-D)
A personal God ... and I doubt ... any God(s) ...

Kev-


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Hop On Pop

7/8/2008 6:22:35 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 6:22:52 AM


What's not there will remain not there ... never to be "discovered" ... because it's not there, and never has been ...

You mean like other planets? You mean like the laws of nature? You mean like God?
You don't know what is there and what is not there yet, Kevin.

For the very same reasons that you are espousing: WE DON'T KNOW (yet)!
Therefore, nothing is definitive. Because we don't know what we don't know.

Todd


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 6:26:30 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 6:29:26 AM


Oh, yeah, and since you didn't dispute any of the other points, I win those, right?

Of course not, I concede little ground. I will though, say that I misused the term "logic" ... causing confusion of point.

When one is holding 5 simultaneous conversations, plodding, point by point discussion just isn't possible, so I had to only directly address the heart of your post..

Otherwise, I'd have been up all night typing ... making me very grumpy this morning, instead of my natural sweet disposition.

:-D

btw ... on this bbs, we can be the two old codgers up in the balcony box on the Muppets, making trouble.

:-D

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 6:37:07 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 7:24:09 AM


Morning Todd!

Yes, there is a lot of unknown, but again ... the crux of the matter isn't what is unknown ...

Are more planets awaiting discovery? Yes. They are known to exist.

Are more "laws of nature" awaiting discovery? Yes. They are known to exist.

Is "God" awaiting discovery? Perhaps. God is not known to exist. I suspect we'll be waiting forever on this one though ...

Are Ghosts awaiting discovery? Perhaps. Millions are trying to prove them ... yet ... not a single credible shred of evidence. I suspect this is a dead end path of exploration too.

It is obvious that we don't know what we don't know. We also will forever remain uncertain about what's there and what's not. Otherwise we'll know all there is to know. Who knows? We may get there if we don't knock ourselves off (or some other external calamity occurs) along the way ...

If we're gone though ... what will God do with no one to know? (Remember, this is where I started the conversation.)

I wouldn't count on Cats to take our place. They worship nothing but themselves ...

If we take humanity out of the equation ... do we remove God as part of that? I think so ... along w/ ESP and all the other things I mentioned above.

There are certain things one can suspect and anticipate will never be able to be known ... all the while allowing that one might be totally wrong ... which I've said several times above. Yet, I don't think so.

Best,

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 6:48:34 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 7:05:36 AM


I also believe that because you have lived longer, doesn't necessarily mean you have "lived" longer...get my drift?

Depends on one's definition of "lived" doesn't it? And who is to judge one life over another? You? Me? God? lol ...

It would require observational judgments on things for which there are no right answers. So, yes, SD ... I believe I get your drift, and I think otherwise.

Best,

Kev-


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Hop On Pop

7/8/2008 7:19:25 AM


So your belief in science all comes down to faith in the process does it not?
Faith?

Hmmm.....

-Todd


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satch

7/8/2008 7:33:01 AM


"Everything you see and many things you can’t see are made up of matter."
"Atoms are the building blocks of matter."
"One of the most surprising findings about atoms is that almost all the space within an atom is empty space."

Kev - if you accept these facts, then you simply must also accept that all physical matter, though it appears to be solid, is in fact mostly empty space.

So, my point is that the physical world is illusory - it appears to made up of solid objects but these objects are in fact mostly space.

This anomaly is maintained by the fact we live within the physical world, we perceive this physical world through our five senses, our senses limit our perceptions of the world we live in.

Ergo, if your view off life is based on your physical perceptions, then your view of life is limited.


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 7:35:01 AM


I wish folks wouldn't keep harping back to what science knows and doesn't. It's missing the point.

It doesn't matter.

It's not about faith in the process of science or not. Science is a tool. Faith is not required in a hammer.

It doesn't matter.

It's about human nature ...

... the things we make up to comfort ourselves ...

... the incredibly varying interpretations of "GOD" various cultures have had over the millennium ...

... the continuing and evolving change of the face of "God"...

... Science is actually only mildly relevant in the conversation ...

Read my last post to you, bud, about when humanity is no more. Is God no more?

The core question is:

What has humanity simply made up for themselves that has little to no substantiation in a natural universe? For when we go ... it too passes along with us ...

(see above list)

Kev-


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Hop On Pop

7/8/2008 7:36:23 AM


At this pont, let me state, for the record that I adhere to no single religious creed or dogma or whatever you choose to call it.

I just have faith that there is a higher power out there, no matter what it may be.

Physics has proven that you cannot create matter from nothingness. So then, where did the matter in the universe come from? It could not have simply always existed... it had to come from somewhere. But... where?

Todd


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 7:51:01 AM


"Everything you see and many things you can’t see are made up of matter."
"Atoms are the building blocks of matter."
"One of the most surprising findings about atoms is that almost all the space within an atom is empty space."

Kev - if you accept these facts, then you simply must also accept that all physical matter, though it appears to be solid, is in fact mostly empty space.

So, my point is that the physical world is illusory - it appears to made up of solid objects but these objects are in fact mostly space.

This anomaly is maintained by the fact we live within the physical world, we perceive this physical world through our five senses, our senses limit our perceptions of the world we live in.

Ergo, if your view off life is based on your physical perceptions, then your view of life is limited.


Our physical perceptions ARE all we have to work with, Satch. What else is there? ESP? It doesn't exist. I've studied it extensively.

What you're discussing is theoretical abstracts. We can't see quarks or atoms, obviously, but we've been able ... through our innate ability to handle conceptual abstractions, to ascertain their existence.

We don't live in the abstract world where there's tons of space. We live in the real one where the neighbors keep each other up at night.

I need to eat, and if all my food is mostly abstract empty space, well ... that might explain why I eat so much.

Reality is not an illusion. It's real. What you're discussing is abstractions that are the building blocks of matter ... and matter is very real.

I understand your point ... that our senses limit us in what we can touch, smell, see, hear and taste ...

Yet our brain's ability to deal with the abstract allows us to know that ultraviolet light is there, even though we cannot see it.

Our brain takes us beyond our limited senses.

And the same ability of the abstract that allows it to extend beyond our five senses is the same ability that makes shit up that's not there.

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 7:54:02 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 7:55:12 AM


Now, now, Tod, we must pick and choose which points to respond to if we're to win at BB Ball - as has been amply demonstrated here. So, no talking about what's behind the physical universe or where all this stuff came from - it doesn't matter.

Let's deal instead with what we do know and dismiss what we don't know as unimportant and irrelevant, while admitting that we don't know a lot of things, including, as many have said, not knowing what we don't know about. Let's give lip service to what we don't know, while not discussing the implications of not knowing what we don't know, and let's mention some straw men, werewolves, dracula, zombies, etc. while we're talking about God - it's all the same.


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 8:03:19 AM


Physics has proven that you cannot create matter from nothingness. So then, where did the matter in the universe come from? It could not have simply always existed... it had to come from somewhere. But... where?

There is a whole discipline of Physics studying this very question:

Okay ... we believe there was a Big Bang ... the information present in the universe points towards it.

Nothing comes from nothing ...

So what did the universe look like before the BB? It's just looking back down the chain of events ... and we may never know the answer.

Theories are being suggested ... "The inflationary universe" where things got very hot and very cold ... but didn't cool evenly ... and then exploded and ...

Science doesn't substantially matter, it can only go so far in explaining so many things ... but we'll see ...

Everyone is fully entitled to engage in whatever belief they want while alive. And then we'll still all die. And then we'll know. Or not.

Best,

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 8:14:22 AM


As far as the space between matter, well, matter is only a distinction of energy, it's all energy out there. E=Mc2. Vibration. Waves. In that way, it is all illusion. That keyboard under your fingers is actually a collection of trillions of little waving flags bound together by some sort of affection for each other. We may eventually dissect the details of how all those little waves and vibrations interact, and that may help us to manipulate them, but it still won't tell us why they do what they do, why they are here in the first place, what they really are. Are they and we a fig newton of God's imagination? No way of telling from staring at them.

Maybe there's a little demon assigned to each teeny unit of energy/matter, and it's his job to enforce the law. No way of telling by looking at those those teeny little thingies.

In that way, a stark view of the universe as just mechanical interactions of little physical bodies and energy does require some faith that that is the way things are. You're not going to prove or disprove either the view of stark physical reality or the view of God(however you define Him, there are any number of ways of thinking about some higher Force behind the Universe)-driven events. There simply is no test to distinguish between the two (unless you define this God in some testable way, which would only be a set-up job).

So, yeah, God, no God, it does come down to faith either way, at its root. Faith that what you see and can test is all there is, or faith that God activates all this.

Now, there are certainly testable systems of religious belief, because those have been systematized by men, and they all will fail one test or another, most of them spectacularly. This says nothing about a Prime Creator or Motivator, it simply speaks to men's ideas about such a thing.


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 8:15:09 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 8:50:27 AM


Now, now, Tod, we must pick and choose which points to respond to if we're to win at BB Ball - as has been amply demonstrated here. So, no talking about what's behind the physical universe or where all this stuff came from - it doesn't matter.

Let's deal instead with what we do know and dismiss what we don't know as unimportant and irrelevant, while admitting that we don't know a lot of things, including, as many have said, not knowing what we don't know about. Let's give lip service to what we don't know, while not discussing the implications of not knowing what we don't know, and let's mention some straw men, werewolves, dracula, zombies, etc. while we're talking about God - it's all the same.


Or instead ... we could waste time talking about how we're talking, and then we'd be discussing how useless all conversation is ... because when it gets all about the players and their funny accents ... and silly snide attempts at ridicule are made ...

... then the one making silly snide attempts at ridicule, becomes subject to said ridicule themselves.

It's all about "winning" BB Ball? Winning what? You want to be champion?

Here's a medal ... wear it proudly.

You aren't paying proper attention to the crux of discussion ... You're too busy trying to "win argument points" ... via nitpicking minutiae.

Pls ... offer something ... that doesn't simply try to disassemble.

What's your actual opinion on the matter at hand? Then I can play your disassemble game with you ...


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 8:22:49 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 9:50:54 AM


lol ... and then you did ...

It's all about faith ... yes.

For no one knows the truth of the matter as I said several times above, until you die. Even then, who knows ... you're right again ... none of it is testable.

But ... I keep going back to where I started ...

I've always wondered what constructs disappear when humans do, and what 'truths" will remain in the universe outside of human ... what's the word ... interaction?

"God" is likely a human theoretical manifestation, explainable as a emotional psychological crutch to derive comfort in dealing w/ human awareness and comprehension of adverse circumstance and the finality of death ...

... to my mind ... all for which there is no applicable test available for.

I stick by my list ... straw man included.


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 8:51:57 AM


I like to talk about how we're talking. It's substantive, because until you define where you're coming from and why you're posting on a BB (which...technically, this is Ison's blog we're posting on, heh, not a BB, but ya know, by any other name, blah, blah) in the first place, you're having a muddled discussion. Dude, no one posts on a BB without at least subconsciously wanting reactions, and usually wanting some agreement or re-inforcement of what they're posting. It's a game of sorts, and denying it doesn't make it not so. I'm just blatant and explicit about it.

**********
" "God" is a human theoretical manifestation to derive comfort in dealing w/ our comprehension"

So is mathematics. I know you'll prolly disagree with that one, so I'll let you get that out of your system while I do other necessary stuff for a while. Then I'll revisit. Eventually, I even tell you what I think about life after death (shock!)


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Hop On Pop

7/8/2008 8:57:22 AM


Not (necesasarily) looking to "win"... ;-)

Just talking about thinking and how we think, because that IS what this topic is all about. It's an unwinnable arguement on all sides. And I, for one, love that it is. Because I love endless possibilities.

With agape...
Todd


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 9:14:37 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 9:30:41 AM


Loren .... We were all something before we were born ... We will all be something after we're gone ... therefore there is no death ...

If, as you say, death is the opposite of life ... then you are saying that before we were born, we were "not alive" therefore dead ...
so by your own admission ,"Death is the opposite of Life", you are saying there is Life after Death ... because we were the opposite of life "not alive or dead" and then we were born "alive or life" ...

... the cycle never ends ... so there can be no death


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 10:03:29 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 10:09:33 AM


I like to talk about how we're talking. It's substantive, because until you define where you're coming from and why you're posting on a BB (which...technically, this is Ison's blog we're posting on, heh, not a BB, but ya know, by any other name, blah, blah) in the first place, you're having a muddled discussion. Dude, no one posts on a BB without at least subconsciously wanting reactions, and usually wanting some agreement or re-inforcement of what they're posting. It's a game of sorts, and denying it doesn't make it not so. I'm just blatant and explicit about it.

Discussion on any bbs is always muddled to some degree or another. Pointing it out points out the obvious ... so I consider it pretty much a waste of space ... and thereby avoid doing it. It bogs things down. I'd rather just take what's said and run w/ it from there.

To whit:

So is mathematics. I know you'll prolly disagree with that one, so I'll let you get that out of your system while I do other necessary stuff for a while. Then I'll revisit. Eventually, I even tell you what I think about life after death (shock!)

I agree (shock!) :D

Mathematical constructs seek practical order out of the unknown.

God constructs seek emotional order out of the random chaos.

Same triggers of origination, different needs serviced.


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Andy Broad

7/8/2008 10:15:13 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 10:52:09 AM


"if you accept these facts, then you simply must also accept that all physical matter, though it appears to be solid, is in fact mostly empty space."

What make you think this so called space is empty?

It's full force fields (not the science fiction kind :-)) strong. weak, elctromagnetic, and gravitational.
As Einstein said:

"There is no such thing as an empty space, i.e., a space without field. Space-time does not claim existence on its own, but only as a structural quality of the field."





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Andy Broad

7/8/2008 10:17:42 AM


When Einstein said "God doesn't play dice with the universe" he wasn't talking about God, but expression is discomfort with the new concepts involved in quantum mechanics.


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 10:18:45 AM


I AM shocked. Most people think mathematics actually exists outside of peoples' minds, even that mathematics IS the physical law. Good for you!

You're a merciless player, Kev, and you know the rules of BBdom very well. But that's the last I'll say about that. It is now unmentionable.


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7/8/2008 10:30:11 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 10:33:12 AM


Damn, this is a zesty topic...

I wonder if anyone puts this much thought into their own sex life

Probably not, since it's not an eventuality for many of us



Anyone hungry for cod ? Quite frankly, I'm surprised and disappointed John Fry hasn't shown up with his photoshopped version of death. I keep checking, and checking, but no... nothing ! Sorry Steve you wicked thread-meister you, I creep back to the murky infested waters from whence I came. Here cod... coddie cod cod... c'mon little fishy... I can hear you gurgling...

it's all so fluid


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Jeff Allen Myers

7/8/2008 10:51:35 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 10:54:15 AM


"If it's outside of the physical laws, its conjecture ... make believe ... made up shit ... until proven or discovered otherwise. In the time of man, the supernatural remains stubbornly unsubstantiated."

Hence, it means nothing."

I think this quote is total bullshit. Kev, you are very smart and eloquent but wow does this quote suck :) we are naive, science is still infantile. There is still much we do not understand, and may never understand, and will never be substantiated.
There are miracles that surround us every day....Little things we may take for granted. Sight for one........the human eye is amazing. As is the human brain...billions of cells and neurons. Yes we can seek to explain the rods and cones of the human eye through medicine and science, but it is still a miracle.

This is a huge blog, many words....too long to read every thing, Kev's quote stuck out to me,not picking on you Kev, you have made many valid points, However, this whole debate is egocentric. It cannot be won as faith is personal. It cannot be proven or disproven. Faith.....you cannot take it away from those who believe.

There are many religions and supernatural beliefs. If I can believe I am here, thinking, writing, breathing,...It is not a stretch to believe...in something greater.

We are each living a miracle..if it was by accident, now that is harder to believe then anything I have read here.How was energy created? What was here before it? Does space ever end? and if so what stops it? And if there is a barrier, what is on the other side? (David St. Hubbins is a genious, I am paraphrasing :)

Science to many is a religion in which to attempt to understand. It is not much different then faith, as in the end all that is left are theories.

I choose to believe in something greater, and I am thankful to have been given the opportunity to Live....To each his own, I respect each and everyones faith.

Regards,

Jeff


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Jack Heinicke

7/8/2008 11:02:34 AM


I can't believe I'm doing this.
I've seen literally countless similar discussions like this one for years on the net that I can't believe I'm being sucked in again. I feel like Al Pacino in Godfather 3.
This time I'm going to go about it a different way because it is in my opinion an exercise in futility to get anyone in these forums to actually seriously consider something they disagree with. Plus trying to get people to see things my way is ridiculous. Who really cares what I think, besides myself and maybe (i stress the word maybe) my wife. Plus it seems to me that those who are asking the questions aren't really interested in what, let's say a Christian believes because the questioner already has their mind made up on the answer to the question and their just having fun baiting the hook.
Which is fine. These discussions are vastly interesting but eventually it just reminds me of my dog when she's chasing her tail.
Either way, I know what I believe and I'm sticking to it. Not because of anything anyone in a discussion forum stated but because of what I've experienced and have come to believe as the absolute truth. Call me arrogant for saying that, I don't care.
All I know is that I am an undeserving sinner saved by His grace; otherwise known as Jesus Christ.

OK, I'm good now.


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 11:08:00 AM


Jack, it's an oldy but a goody. Throw us some meat.


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Jack Heinicke

7/8/2008 11:31:38 AM


Dude quit trying to suck me in!
If someone wants meat they'll just search the __scriptures for it. Plus it helps to search with at least a mustard seed of faith.
Or else they'll just continue believing what they been believing. Which is probably more likely.


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 11:41:16 AM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 11:42:43 AM


Jack ! Quite to the contrary ... I and am sure others as well DO care what you think ... Sure there are those in the blog arena around the web that just want to be right and have closed minds ...

but others enjoy learning ...
Many of the views I have obtained through my life are from reading others words ...

That is one problem I do have with the larger part of anyone that is a devout Christian, Buddhist, Atheist etc. etc. ... They seem to have closed their minds to the possibility that their faith could be wrong ... and that they "KNOW" all the answers and everyone else is spreading the Devil's world .... They have no tolerance for learning unless it is taught to their belief system ...


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the kozy king

7/8/2008 11:45:04 AM



JACK: "The questioner already has their mind made up on the answer to the question."

DAN: "Jack... throw us some meat."

KOZY: "Don't fall for it, Jack." (:-)))))))))

For me the proof is in the pudding as they say. Let's have the same discussion next year and see who says the same thing again and who changes their "truth" by then.

I have enjoyed every word. A couple of people here are excellent at arguing in the classical sense. Some of us suffer from illusions of grandeur. And a couple of people have shown a bit of true humility.

Wow! What long blog. And no response from Ison...


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 12:05:50 PM


Terry I think you are wrong on this point ...

"For me the proof is in the pudding as they say. Let's have the same discussion next year and see who says the same thing again and who changes their "truth" by then."

I believe that I have changed greatly through the years ... no one is born with a set Right and wrong ideas ... and no one is born with a closed mind ...

The teaching of religion is usually a very early starting point for closing minds ...
Religion causes wars, unrest and upheaval ...

When you are taught to believe something so strongly you are shutting off the world and creating major tension between you and someone who has been taught completely different ... and it all is caused by closed minds ... people who KNOW that they are right and everyone else that doesn't believe the way they do is wrong ....

Most experts on any subject are later proven to be wrong ...
I choose to take my teachings from the whole spectrum ... not just one overly concieted book..


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Jack Heinicke

7/8/2008 12:10:34 PM


Crap. The hook is my mouth.
TMWNB- I appreciate your comment. I take it back that peoples words don't help us to change and alter our minds. Maybe I just didn't express myself on that one correctly. I just find it futile to try to change anyone's mind. And that's funny because I work as a counselor. HAH! Plus it was nice of you say that others do care about what I say. Your a nice guy.
On the topic of devout believers being closed minded I must say that I can't disagree with you. You are right about that. But part of the problem is that in order to be devout about a particular belief, doesn't that in itself rule out that person really allowing themselves to believe what is contrary to what they are devout about? I have had many times of severe doubt as a believer and have questioned the very core of my beliefs but at the end of the day I keep coming back to the same place. As Peter told Jesus when Jesus asked him, "who do you say I am" I keep coming up with same answer and that He is who He says He is; the Christ.
And yes, today I am closed minded about believing in anything else. Before believing this I spent about 3 years searching for some semblance of THE truth and I read and studied just about everything I could get my hands on. I even studied A Course In Miracles with people. All I can tell you is that once I encountered what (or rather Who I encountered) I have had no need whatsoever to look anywhere else. I found what I'd been looking for and it wasn't in a religion per se, but it was in the person/God; Jesus Christ.
And because of me having my personal experience I don't expect my words to do the same for another person. The words can and do help point someone in that direction but that's all I can attempt.
And I really hope that I don't even begin to think that it's about me being right. I know my thinking all too well and how flawed it can be. I just want to be aligned with what is right. And my very soul tells me it's Him.


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Jeff Allen Myers

7/8/2008 12:12:22 PM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 12:16:36 PM


For me, It is perfectly ok to have a faith so strong I believe I am right, .....

However, I believe I need to have tolerance and respect for those who have a differing opinion, even if I think they are wrong.

Respect is a two way street, if you want it...you must give it.


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 12:22:27 PM


Very nice Jack ... and interesting ... but let me put this out there for you ...

You happened to be in a place where the "right" books fell into your hands to lead you to your current beliefs ...

but why I say it makes no sense to be so strongly attached to one religion or the other is ... take the scenerio that you had been born into a devout Muslim family ... I can't say for sure but chances are ... would you not proclaim that the Muslim faith was the only correct faith ? ... and I use Muslim as an example ... it could be any religion ...

I have a hard time believing certain people are led to certain books and others are led to other books and that only one of those groups of people are "entitled" to a glorious after life and others are not ....


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Jack Heinicke

7/8/2008 12:37:11 PM


Once again I can't argue with you Sam. You are probably right about if one is born into a particular belief system then they probably would inherit that belief.
I also have had a very, very hard time with the "exclusivity" aspect of my beliefs. I know, it sounds like a prestigious country club where only the elite can enter into. And that idea really sucks! Thats why Jesus said I've come not for those who are well but for those who are sick. And that's me!
A large part of the whole point of Christianity is that NO ONE is entitled to a glorious afterlife. All He asks is one simple little thing.
Do you believe? If the answer is yes then it says you do get to enter now. If you say no then it's no go. I know exactly how this feels to someone looking in because I used to be there. It really sucks and pisses you off! At least it did for me. And it just doesn't seem right. I know how this feels because I remember where I came from. And I am in no way shape or form any more (or less) deserving of entry than anyone else. As Clint Eastwood said in The Unforgiven when he was about to blow Gene Hackman's brains out after Hackman said, " I don't deserve to die like a dog like this" ol' Clint said, "deserves got nothing to do with it". Man I love that line because it is so true! (plus the movie rocks).
So I agree with you as well that it is hard to believe that certain people are led and other's aren't. But I agree also with (I think it was Kozy Kings) that if God is actually doing that, then He must know what He's doing. Even if that means that I don't get in.


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Jeff Allen Myers

7/8/2008 12:45:06 PM


The problem I have with orgaized religion is it is full of contradiction, and things that just don't seem right at the core.

As for Christianity, I do not agree a murderer who has accepted jesus christ gets a free pass to heaven, when a Man who by all accounts has been a giving, gentle person is condemned to Hell because he chose to not to be a Christian.

I cannot speak for other religions as I am ignorant of them....

I am not an Agnostic, but I do not follow a religion. I do have faith in something bigger then us all, but I have too many questions. If there is a God, I would like to think goodness, free will, charity,kindness, etc mean something. We are all flawed...

I wish I did have an unweilding faith that I can rely and lean on. Whether it be Christianity, Muslim, Hindu, Buddah,........ It would certainly ease alot of anxiety I feel every day. I do know this, we are given one life to Live on this earth....here and now. We must all make the most of it, and be the best human we can be.

May each be blessed in their own way.

Jeff


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 12:54:53 PM


Jack ... This one is real hard for me to grasp ..
"A large part of the whole point of Christianity is that NO ONE is entitled to a glorious afterlife."

but the point is, that according to Christian beliefs, you get a choice to make ... choose Jesus and get in ... don't and no entry ...

but I have a hard time believing only certain people "get" that choice ... it is the same with "Allah" ... and other various religious icons ...

You are to make a choice with-in your religion ... everybody else is being led astray ? .. it doesn't compute in my eyes ...

The Bible has many, many, great lessons ... but so does the Koran and the Book of Buddha ... and the Jewish text ... and The Book of Mormon and on and on and on ...

The Bible has enriched my life, as well as these other doctrines as well, I feel those that do not (or are unwilling) to explore life and it's authors are cheating themselves out of all the glory that God has put on this Earth for us to see ...
and in the end ALL faiths will disappear into the vastness of one ...


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 1:03:07 PM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 1:05:32 PM


Well, there's always Unitarian Universalism. They're not exclusive.


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Jack Heinicke

7/8/2008 1:09:39 PM


Dang it Sam, you got me hooked!

I see where your coming from, I really do. It's just that no matter where someone is born or what belief/religious system they are born into, we all equally get to make that choice. And that's the funny thing to me man is that it is as simple as that. It's a simple little ol' choice! All those folks you mention from various beliefs, many of them regardless of their religious upbringing have made this very choice.
It's like, do I choose to wear white or black socks today. I know I'm trivializing the heck out of the sacred and what is the most important question that this post is addressing but when you boil it down it is a matter of choice.
So here's the rub...
What does someone have to lose by choosing to believe in Jesus Christ? I mean really, what do they really have to lose? Previous identity? Dearly held beliefs? Friends? Maybe some family? Getting drunk or stoned? Does it automatically place you in a cult of crazies who are obnoxious and wear funny hairdos and weird looking makeup? (I know, I know, I seen some of that nonsense on TV).
I could go on and on but I think these are valid questions. What does one have to lose and to gain? Methinks we take ourselves too seriously sometimes and what we hold near and dear and cherish about our beliefs sometimes needs to be thrown against a wall and shattered into zillions of little pieces and put back together again and again and again.
I don't know dude. Work a 3rd step or something. Turn your life and will over just to see what happens.


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The Man With No Band

7/8/2008 1:18:45 PM


Fair piece Jack ... I have turned my life over ... and to God ... just not quite the same way as Christian beliefs ... and I am very happy too ... but I will continue to seek and learn, cuz it's fun ... :)

I would like to address one more point to ponder and then I must log off for a bit ....

Early in this blog I brought up a question about a child being denied the right of Heaven if that child had never heard the word of God ....

Terry's response was something to the effect that in the Christian belief no child is omitted from the gates of heaven ...

Doesn't the Bible say that we are ALL God's children ? ... Where is the age of cut off ? ... Is it 18 because we say that is when one becomes an adult ? ... Is it 21 as that's when one is considered an adult in some places ? ... is it 16, 13, 30, 90 ? ... In the early days of the Bible people lived to be 800 years old ... Wouldn't that still make a 100 year old man a child ?

I've enjoyed this but must run ...


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 1:19:22 PM


"If it's outside of the physical laws, its conjecture ... make believe ... made up shit ... until proven or discovered otherwise. In the time of man, the supernatural remains stubbornly unsubstantiated."

Hence, it means nothing."

I think this quote is total bullshit. Kev ...


As a stand alone quote, out of context, I agree that it certainly sounds like complete B.S. Jeff.

Let me paraphrase myself in further clarification:

"That which does not exist, cannot be substantiated."

It's another way of saying, "there's no such things as ghosts ... no matter how hard or long people have tried to prove there are. In the time of man, even with all the technological advances, it hasn't happened ... and likely never will."

Kev-


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never never band

7/8/2008 1:30:22 PM


surrender , or even your "3 step" scenario is distinct from what modern Christians are talking about.
Surrender can be an agnostic act, it doesn't require that you believe in God Men who roll away stones and speak in riddles...
It just means that you accept that you don't know.
In a sense surrender is the opposite of "Faith" and "Faith" is what the christian is asking us to have.

Faith is accepting indefensible metaphysical propositions as fact,
a dangerous thing to do.....
It leads to cognitive dissonance at best and Monotheistic Bigotry at worst..
You'd think we'd have figure at least that much out by now.

As for life after Death..
That seems like a contradiction in terms on the face of it. We'll have to re-define both Life and Death for that question to even be meaningful...

S.


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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

7/8/2008 3:51:57 PM


this is interesting but haven't we come some way from the original thesis?

Not believing in "Religion" does not neccesarily mean not believng in----" a power that cannot be explained"

Natural vs Supernatural was fun------- and illuminating in some ways but too finite for me!

For me ---religious books be they the Bible or Koran or whatever have mans sticky fingerprints all over them!

As Kev said ---take man out of the equation---and what religion would the plants , insects, animals and bacteria follow??

---but I do believe there is something beyond science---like aroha ---OR LOVE--in an unambiuous sense -

love is light---light is truth ---truth is love-----Van De Velden


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SILVERWOODSTUDIO

7/8/2008 4:15:10 PM


---oops --left out the G--word

God is love---love is light----light is truth!


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Kevin White

7/8/2008 4:53:12 PM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 5:01:05 PM


What folks might find curious to learn about my background is that I was a devoted young Catholic altar boy for years and years ... the Irish family first born boy, on his way to the seminary ...

I loved the church in my youth .. which prompted me to devote study and thought to it ...

... bible school ... the works ...

Kind of a reversal ... don't ya think?

Kev-


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LyinDan

7/8/2008 5:58:36 PM


Sounds like you were jilted by God, thus the reason you've closed the door so tightly. Jilted by ESP, too, I guess.

Those bastards!


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never never band

7/8/2008 6:12:21 PM ---- Updated 7/8/2008 6:17:08 PM


:)

I was an Episcopalian alter boy and then at 13 I started trying different churches on my own..
Got Re-Baptised at Redeemer Temple, Got discouraged and started to doubt the existence of God, or Rather doubted that there was a God that gave a damn for Humanity... hung out with Hari Krishnas in Washington park,

at 14 I Discovered LSD and Psilocybin, which made religion look like kid stuff...
That led to looking for the actual mystical experience ,Hung out with New Age occultists and spent a year reading and studying...which in turn landed me in the "hospital" for 18 months between my 16th and 18th birthdays...
:-)

heh..

I think what I see now is that we don't even agree on the definition of the terms we employ when discussing this sort of thing and so we talk in circles.

When Jesus or Allah or YHVH ot Ahura Mazda etc. come into the discussion we begin to employ metaphysical propositions that aren't defensible by any conventional means so we're not really using Empircism, so in a sense we're not saying anything meaningful.
Trying to discuss something like this without making untestable or indefensible metaphysical assertions seems very difficult.

but we could try..
we may come up with something interesting.

I'm interested in the DMT molecule and it's role in what have come to be known as "near death experiences"
Also, having spent time with friends who were dying I've witnessed a fascinating process or internal reconciliation that I think is compelling mainly in that it has no obvious evolutionary advantage and yet seems to be widespread and may have been the inspiration for writings like "the book of the dead" etc.

I guess what I'm saying is there seems to be something really interesting going on with the death experience that crosses all cultural and religious boundaries and is likely more in line with a true natural process separate from moralizing and proselytizing. That's pretty important stuff to my mind because it seems to be our fear of death and our misunderstanding of the process that makes us so vulnerable to religion.
Really at a time like this when Competing religious dogmas threaten to destroy life on earth discussions like this deserve a great deal of attention.
I wonder if it can be discussed in strictly secular terms?


s.









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the kozy king

7/8/2008 10:42:23 PM



http://iacmusic.com/songs.aspx?SongID=63682&ArtistID=55165


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7/9/2008 12:45:21 AM ---- Updated 7/9/2008 12:47:03 AM


Is this where Kevin breaks down crying and finds God again ? I don't think so...


Stick it out Kev !!! I'm rootin' for ya !!! Yeah ! Go Kev Go Kev !!!!


I really think Kev would love to believe in all that stuff, but can't find a way to justify the fairy tale as there does seem to be allot of damage control needed in doing so. One may deny what one does not know by what one knows, but the more one knows, the more one doesn't, or is that a myth ignorance started to bring down the professors of the world because an A was never on the menu. Sounds clever, but may in fact be a load of donkey crap after the orgy.

I believe in life after life after life after life and before and sideways and beyond our linear understanding of time and physical nature. But that is neither here nor there... but the truth is that life is precious regardless of what may have come before or may be coming after... we must find a way to create our heavens right here and now while we are alive, and not just for ourselves, but for each other... and many atheists adhere to this value more than those that believe they might actually have another shot at it ... or so it would seem. In the end it doesn't really matter what we believe but rather how we live. Most people rarely live what they claim to believe, but I believe that how we truly live our lives is our greatest and most sincere prayer of all... much like how we all sing a song... the greatest singers are those that do so with their heart, and leave a little room in there for harmony. Hopefully, there is room enough for many diverse prayers... and ideas.

I respect your viewpoints Kev and admire your sticktuitiveness.

I can only discuss life and death for so long until one or the other will inevitably and quite forcibly come and make me experience it for myself. Both terrifying and equally necessary to maintain this flame that burns within.





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Conversation Suicide

7/9/2008 1:16:03 AM


I'm with you cracka! It's all about the here and now! Of course, easy to say, hard to practice, but I'm tryin' every day. Kind of an existentialist viewpoint. ACTION is what it's all about.

and Talking... IF IT'S in creative blog comments like yours! -phlegm


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Kevin White

7/9/2008 8:08:31 PM


Microsoft is the devil, and Vista is the spawn of the devil.

Over the last hour, I lovingly crafted a brilliant piece of writing that outlined my whole philosophy … pressed “submit” and …

Nothing … totally lost … I can only blame the devil wanting to avert publishing the truth of things … wait …

So, here in poor remembrance, is my second chance reply. This appears more as an outline of the first, than the really clever prose I used originally:

“Hi, I’m Kev, and I’d like to confess I’m a happy person.

I know that I will die, because I know it will happen. I don’t know what will happen after I die, but I suspect I’ll do what everything else does. I believe all life means “just life” … and my own life is similar to all other life on this wonderful world.

I do think, regardless, that being atop the food chain affords us luxuries of thought that we’d not be afforded further down.

I probably killed at least 4,000 other living things on the planet today by accident. I didn’t mean to, but I didn’t notice it either. I drove … I mowed the lawn … I walked … I swatted …

Yet, being atop said food chain allows an arrogance of thinking that we’re above all the rest of life on the planet. We’re not looking daily over our shoulder at what’s going to jump and eat us. Good for us.

I think we’re merely another point on the map of the natural. Eliminate all life, eliminate us. We’re part of the mix, not the mixer … for those who appreciate the analogy.

So what happens when we’re eliminated from the mix?

Well, same thing as the 4000 things I accidentally eliminated from the mix today. We become, like just about everything else on the planet … fertilizer … from which the next crop grows.

I really hope so, because if I end up in Beetle heaven, it’s going to be REALLY crowded!

Arrogance, and good for us that we might even understand the meaning of the word, leads us to believe we’re different.

We are. We’re not.

Speaking of fertilizer … this post should grow a few replies …

Anjuli, you are sweet of heart …

Go Kev!

Best,

Kev-


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Conversation Suicide

7/9/2008 8:47:07 PM ---- Updated 7/9/2008 8:49:29 PM


Wow Kevin. Heavy stuff. If we grabbed onto that everyday, how would we still function? The sheer arrogance it takes to survive in this world alone, would make being conscious of all the creatures & plants we are indirectly or directly murdering each day almost an impossibility.
You are totally right of course. But the only ones who can successfully live with social consciousness like this every day, DON'T drive cars, or eat meat, or play electric instuments and fritter away natural resources & glutonize on food, and are usually off on a mountain top meditating until they can reach the great nothingness or nirvana or somekind of oneness with the cosmos.

Uh... I love so many aspects of this life, but I'm a hypocrite like the rest of us, in that I can't LIVE with thoughts like your character's, invading my brain and inhibiting my actions for daily living.

BUT definitely good stuff. I suspect after we die which as you've established WELL already, we all will; this perplexing miasma of being a part of the horrible & selfish top of this world's food chain, will all make sense.

Or maybe a higher life form, that is at the top of the food chain within the solar system or galaxy or even UNIVERSE, which this rock is a part of, will come and devour/murder us, and the great dance of the afterlife & what lays beyond will ensue...

Reincarnation? I'm in you and you're in me? We're all part of the same Energy? Heaven/ HELL/ Nirvana/ Paradise or HADES? Don't know.

Just wanna make the best of what seems to make sense at this point in my growth as a human being. And I'm CERTAIN, as arrogant as that may be, that MUSIC/ART & listening to the muses for the creation of said artforms, is supposed to be a part of why I'm here. That and LOVE of family & friends, and at whatever level I can muster, Love of this l'il ole rock and ALL its inhabitants.

This being said, I Just WANNA ROCK! -Phlegm


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LyinDan

7/9/2008 8:50:24 PM


Well, you're the only life that can contemplate your own death. At least, as far as we know.

Or do you suppose those multitudes of blades of grass you massacred felt the same way?

So what, either way, eh?

As you pass from this mortal coil, and meld with all those blades, maybe they'll tell you what.

Well, I don't think we survive death as "us" either. But I'm not ruling it out.


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Conversation Suicide

7/9/2008 9:09:51 PM


yup. as usual succinct yet sarcastically on target. note to self: learn art of brevity from lyin dan.


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LyinDan

7/9/2008 9:19:08 PM


Have I ever told ya my dog story? This thread has everything else.


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Jeff Allen Myers

7/9/2008 9:23:30 PM ---- Updated 7/9/2008 9:26:22 PM


As I was snorkeling in Maui last week, I was quite aware I was not on top of any Food Chain. As I raised my head to clear my mask above water, I was attacked by my own flipper, of course at that moment I was sure it was a Tiger Shark wanting a late morning snack.

I could not enjoy snorkeling this trip....I think it has something to do with my Son and not wanting him to be a Fatherless child. Mortality is on my mind a lot these days, My Mom is valiantly fighting a Cancer that is slowly advancing. For this, I want to know there is something more after we leave this world.

Is it a blessing or a curse to be able to contemplate Life and death? I guess the best we can do is to leave on our own terms with no regrets. Live life, don't sweat the small shit....Breathe. We all swim with Sharks daily..... Learn to poke them in the eye, and if they bite, pray they miss an artery.

Jeff


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never never band

7/9/2008 10:42:27 PM


I mentioned this in my previous post but I think sometimes the way I write causes me to be misunderstood...

I have spent the last weeks and days with two dear friends as they died and what really struck me was an amazing process of reconciliation that took place within them.
This amazes me and makes me excited in a way because I can't explain it rationally. My atheism is challenged by this because the process serves no obvious evolutionary advantage.
I don't mean reconcile like paying debts or dealing out apologies, this is an entirely internal thing and it's followed by a peace and resignation that's really amazing.
why?
Why do we feel the need to resolve internal struggles before we die?
These people were both gentle and kind and lived good lives, so the process was about internal cognitive struggles.....I think.

One friend had so many people trying to save him, he was dying of leukemia that he had fended off once and had come back again and he had decided not to do Chemo but to try to just eat a macrobiotic diet and beathe and...see what happened.
His family were sort of hippies and they had some means, a lot of people tried to save him! shaman were brought by and Bhuddhist monks were consulted, Cuenderas mixed potions and what not and he bore all of this with a good deal of grace and kindness.
I remember telling him near the end, You're not gonna make it if you don't do the Chemo..He said "yea...I know, I'm ready to go now". I asked why he was seeing all these shaman and such then and he said "I just want everyone to feel they did all they could, I don't want anyone to regret...."
He was hanging on in considerable pain just to let all of his loved ones go through their process!!!
I'd be proud to die so gracefully, I wonder what level of courage I'll really muster in those last days...assuming I don't get snuffed out like a candle.
Right at the end he started to drift, this was that process I was talking about, he'd tell me about some things, but mostly I could just see that things were sorting out for him, he almost started to glow....

I know the DMT molecule plays a major role in our neuro chemistry at this point, and having had the most profound experiences of my life under the influence of that drug I have some inclination as to what might be going on...it's the "Why" that puzzles me.
Why does the brain use these recepter cells at this time?
Visions and incredible cognitive leaps, we've all heard the stories from "near death" experiences and some us have even picked these locks by ingesting these substances deliberately...
but why?
It seems there is a neuro chemical device for enlightenment wired right into us...but it's so bizarre to my way of thinking that it's so closely associated with the end of out lives...

?

Bizarre and curiously hopeful....
I love a good mystery, and this is the BIG one, I don't have any opinion as to what happens to us, if there is a continuity of consciousness or some manner of awareness that persists.
I am puzzled that our reactions and processes in our final hours seem so ....mystical...?

S.


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Conversation Suicide

7/9/2008 10:50:45 PM


Miraculous story. I've experienced similar moments of enlightment, and am always saddened by how easy it is to forget them.
These mystical meanderings, that most of us have experienced at some point in life, are what makes me believe each soul has something to offer the world. Including my own.

Truly touching blog comment from Never Never Band


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Kevin White

7/10/2008 5:55:06 AM ---- Updated 7/10/2008 6:19:47 AM


... and he said "I just want everyone to feel they did all they could, I don't want anyone to regret...."
He was hanging on in considerable pain just to let all of his loved ones go through their process!!! ...


My father's words to me, almost verbatim, as to why he endured on ... so everyone else could adjust to his passing. He was a devoutly religious man, and had long come to his own terms with the inevitable.

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/10/2008 6:16:18 AM ---- Updated 7/10/2008 6:18:46 AM


Well, you're the only life that can contemplate your own death. At least, as far as we know.

Or do you suppose those multitudes of blades of grass you massacred felt the same way?

So what, either way, eh?

As you pass from this mortal coil, and meld with all those blades, maybe they'll tell you what.

Well, I don't think we survive death as "us" either. But I'm not ruling it out.


I find it fascinating that the grass and I share the same DNA, separated by a mere few twists on the chemical chain.

There have been interesting shows recently on TV about the search for the origin of life ... how did life originate on this basically dead rock ... from the theories of spontaneous generation to the primordial soup ... intriguing stuff.

Regarding "surviving" death:

I recognize all things are possible ... but also that certain conclusions are more probable than others.

Best,

Kev-


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Kevin White

7/10/2008 6:38:21 AM ---- Updated 7/10/2008 12:17:32 PM


...I know the DMT molecule plays a major role in our neuro chemistry at this point,

Are you familiar with the research on the mushrooms as it relates to the God Network in the brain?

Perhaps that's the natural mechanism/process of the brain that kicks in in such times in order to deal w/ the harsh reality?

I've no idea, but it's intriguing ...

Kev-


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qelizabeth

7/10/2008 9:16:20 AM


I reached nirvana once, I think. It was really cool.


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LyinDan

7/10/2008 9:30:00 AM


Humans are built to reach conclusions, even when they aren't necessarily warranted.
Some people come to them at the least little evidence, some study hard to try and figure things out. Either way, a veritable multitude of wrong conclusions get fixated. Having reached a viewpoint, some will stick by them till you waterboard them into another one, and some are subject to change them like flies choosing dungheaps.

I try not to reach firm conclusions on subjects that have a basically unknowable taint to them. Insufficient data.

In such cases, it may make sense to choose the view makes you happier. As long as it doesn't make you do stupid stuff.


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qelizabeth

7/10/2008 10:55:25 AM


Where's Steve? . . . Steve?


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Kevin White

7/10/2008 12:28:52 PM


True ... our brains have a core need to organize, compartmentalize, and make quick conclusions ... in certain cases, pigeon hole.

For instance, just think of a person who approaches wearing plaid golf pants and a feather boa.

Quick conclusions ... but not necessarily correct conclusi