Sorry, I just didn't want to get hung up on how a god could create himself. Looking at it now, I think I misspoke. Really, I think God created the universe in himself, so he is the universe and is bigger than the universe. God himself either emerged from the void, I suppose you could say, or has existed forever or before time, or however is easiest to wrap your head around. Anyhow, arguing over these points are hardly relevant to the rest of the discussion, which is why I wanted to avoid it.Nath wrote:Could you clarify? I'm not sure what this means.
Ok, basically it comes down to what we all believe is true, which may or may not be true.Nath wrote:Right. That's why I had to follow it up with an actual explanation.theonlyjett wrote:If probability is an inherently subjective thing, than saying "the probability of god existing is low," is just a more "intellectual" way of saying "I don't believe god exists," rather than an actual explanation.
Bias - a particular tendency or inclination, esp. one that prevents unprejudiced consideration of a question; prejudice. Reading the definition does not make it sound "pretty accurate." If bias was accurate I could then believe that since there are more religious people than non-religious people, and since I have to assume that their biases must be "pretty accurate" since they also have no proof, then by taking the average of all bias in the world, being Christian must be the most accurate. I'm going to go ahead and say that that's not gonna fly with you guys. Despite already being a Christian, it doesn't sit well with me, either.Nath wrote:Right; that's why this is a bias, and not a deterministic fact. But it is usually a pretty accurate bias.
Really, you and I have been here before. You and I both believe what we do based on life experience and the evidence we personally have had available. Neither of us can fault the other for that. But it also means that probability, itself, is simply not a good enough reason to make a wager.
I do hope you realize that there is not a big point or argument I'm trying to make here. It's just fascinating to me just how much most religions have in common besides "love people." For instance:oxoiron wrote:My understanding is that the Three Pure Ones are representations of three facets of the Tao (compassion, humility and moderation), not literal deities. Of course, as with all philosophy, interpretation is open to debate, but as Wikipedia says in this very abbreviated section on the Taoist pantheon:Wikipedia wrote:Traditional conceptions of Tao are not to be confused with the Western concepts of theism and monotheism.
SJ Zero wrote:You Chrisitans who think you've got the only god are going to be shocked when you die and come face to face with Shiva the destroyer.
The trinity and god becoming a, or like a man to show us how to live.
The main text of the latter link is quoted here: (blue mine)
Wikipedia wrote:Most Hindus believe that the spirit or soul — the true "self" of every person, called the ātman — is eternal. According to the monistic/pantheistic theologies of Hinduism (such as Advaita Vedanta school), this Atman is ultimately indistinct from Brahman, the supreme spirit. Hence, these schools are called non-dualist. The goal of life, according to the Advaita school, is to realize that one's ātman is identical to Brahman, the supreme soul. The Upanishads state that whoever becomes fully aware of the ātman as the innermost core of one's own self realizes an identity with Brahman and thereby reaches moksha (liberation or freedom or salvation?).
Hindu epics and the Puranas relate several episodes of the descent of God to Earth in corporeal form to restore dharma in society and guide humans to moksha. Such an incarnation is called an avatar. The most prominent avatars are of Vishnu and include Rama (protagonist in Ramayana) and Krishna (a central figure in the epic Mahabharata).
So the array isn't quite as simple as Pascal originally made it. It's more like this:
believe/follow - not believe/follow
One True GodTM.......................infinite gain - either infinite loss or no loss
(Christian, Judaism, Islam)
atheism................................no gain - no loss
“mythological” religions.............good crops, healthy kids - no loss
(Greek, Roman, Norse Mythology)
most other major religions..........good life - do over or no loss
(Hinduism, Taoism, Wicca, etc.)
Cthulhu.................................destruction - maybe not destruction(but probably destruction)
other constructions...................no gain - no loss
(teapots, unicorns, pasta, raptors)
In order to minimize losses, one must choose the One True GodTM.
In order to maximize benefits, one must choose the One True GodTM.
Please note, that not all options are mutually exclusive. For example, one can choose the One True GodTM AND choose to oppose Cthulhu, again, to minimize losses.