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Posts Tagged ‘belief’

It’s been two years since I finally admitted to myself that I was not struggling with doubt any more; I no longer believed in God. The creed below is what I can say with some confidence that I believe in today. I got a little silly with the language, and I did so on purpose, to help me remember to hold my new beliefs lightly.

Proposition 1: I believe that there is an objective reality; that what is, is; that a = a.

  • Clarification of the above Proposition: I believe that what is, is neither as good, as bad, or even as easily defined or comprehended as it first seems.
  • Corollary of the above Clarification: I believe that labels, like all nouns and symbols, are useful tools- if you remember they are not what actually is.
  • Addendum upon previous three statements: I believe that observation, experimentation, reason, and logic are the best tools we’ve yet found to learn what actually is.

Proposition 2: I believe that actions have consequences.

  • Corollary on Proposition 2: I believe that what we think, say, do, and choose matters.
  • Conclusion drawn from above Corollary and previous Clarification: What we think, say, do and choose matters, but rarely in the manner we expect or intend.
  • Corollary on above Conclusion and previous Addendum: We don’t really know what we’re doing, but that’s no reason not to do our best. Please refer to Corollary two statements previous.

Proposition 3: I believe that value is extrinsic.

  • Addendum on Proposition 3: I believe that we attribute value through ritual and sanctification (blessing, or intentionally making sacred/holy).
  • Corollary on Propostions 1 through 3: I believe that we create what meaning and purpose there is, and can, through changing our choices, change what meaning and purpose we create.
  • Addendum on above Corollary: I believe that empathy, introspection and reason are the best tools we’ve found yet for choosing what meaning and purpose to create, and that the ethic of reciprocity (popularly summarized as the Golden Rule) is the best starting point from which to employ our empathy, introspection and reason, with special attention paid to the resources we have to draw on and the needs which we can fill (including, but not limited to, our own).

Overly simplistic, yet still valid Conclusion drawn from everything said thus far in this creed (much to my pleasant surprise): I believe in love.

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Over on A Life Reviewed, Joe posted a link to an article of mine. I started speaking to someone in the comments of that post, but don’t want to clog Joe’s Blog with an unrelated conversation. But Karin asked me over there, “I’m also wondering what sort of God you no longer believe in Quester? When you had faith, in whom did you have faith?”

This can be a worthwhile question to answer.

I believed in a God who was unlimited and unmodified by either space or time, and was the creator of both. I believed in a God who (more…)

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When I was a child, they taught me that the sky is blue. I looked up and I saw blue above me. I sat down with my crayons and some paper and I coloured the bottom inch of the page green and the top inch blue. In between, I drew a house with four-paned windows, and a stick figure family that was bigger than the house.

As I grew older, I saw other drawings. Other people did not draw the sky at the top of the page and the grass at the bottom, with so much white space in between. In their drawings (more…)

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Mathew Paul asked me once, in a comment thread over on the De-conversion blog what I think the human situation is. I’m not sure how serious he was, but I gave the question a few minutes of thought and wrote,

The human situation, as I understand it:

Humans have remarkable potential within definite limits, though it is within their potential to change those limits.

Within that situation is a challenge to use that potential to increase the potential of other humans. Also within that situation is the option to add limits to yourself or others. There is also the option to misuse potential or ignore the benefits of limits. Nonetheless, there is always potential.

Not exactly a thorough declaration of faith, but it’s someplace to start.

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